Every few weeks, someone goes viral on Twitter for complaining that the free recipes they find online are “too wordy.” Even Mindy Kaling recently tweeted, “Why do all online recipes have endless pages of the chef’s whole life story about the recipe and then on the 12th page is the actual recipe? I just want the recipe!” But here’s what the haters don’t realize: The text that comes before the recipe is not mindless filler—it’s meant to improve your experience of the food. Sometimes it helps to contextualize the dish, or amazes you with fun facts, or schools you in culinary history. And just as often, those opening paragraphs will teach you a brand-new technique to help you master that particular recipe and, by extension, master the art of cooking.
The recipes in this slideshow are more than just recipes. They contain tips, tricks, and techniques that will make you a better cook, and they might even open your mind (and palate) to a whole new world of delicious possibilities.