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December 16, 2021
Top 20 Stories of 2021
Article-STORIES 2021

We picked a few highlights from a very memorable year, including the new rules of nonstick, the great soda awakening, kimbap, carbonara, and asking the question “Was cast iron almost canceled?” 

In early 2022, we will be celebrating our fifth birthday. We’ve got some fun things planned, and we’ll be looking back at some of our favorite stories through online reflections and on the TASTE Podcast. This milestone gives me and my colleague Anna Hezel a feeling of incredible gratitude to our writers, photographers, amazing copyeditor (hi Amelia), illustrators, audience development editor (hi Elora), and the team helping us put out stories and newsletters each and every week. This year was a really memorable one, and we had writers tackling subjects big and salade. Was cast iron almost canceled on Twitter? It’s possible. Should somebody call the carbonara cops? No way, if you ask Sara Jenkins.

We published stories about the world’s most invisible spice, and we made it very clear that the Asian pizza does not need to apologize. Our Cook in Residence, Amethyst Ganaway, wrote about the sometimes-overlooked Southern charcuterie plates of her youth, and Anna wrote a sweet story on one of the great salty foods, about the year’s great American ham wave. We covered topics as big as food companies fighting the background check, and as small (though sillily important) as the ranch dressing renaissance. Picking 20 favorite stories is impossible. We love them all, like we love tinned fish and Italian chile condiments. But here goes. – Matt Rodbard

Just Like Brandma Made

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Just Like Brandma Made

Your most beloved “family” recipe just might have been dreamed up by a corporation in order to sell products. That’s not necessarily a bad thing.

The Invisible Spice

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The Invisible Spice

It may fade into the background of bechamels and batters, but white pepper can be the subtle difference between a good spice cookie and a great spice cookie.

Who Called the Carbonara Police?

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Who Called the Carbonara Police?

Traditional Italian dishes like Bolognese and carbonara are being rethought by creative recipe writers around the world. But what does this mean for the Italian traditionalists hitting social media with a few spicy takes?