The light has been shining on podcasts ever since Serial became a hit last year. That attention is extremely well-deserved, if not a little bit late. Podcasts are digital audio downloads for computers and portable devices. They’re often available in a series, and you can subscribe to get new installments downloaded automatically. The best part? They’re, more often than not, FREE. (Don’t know how to listen? Ira Glass spells it out for you in this adorable video.)
Podcasts are a wonderful way to keep up with culture and learn more about all kinds of topics. There are podcasts out there about practically everything, but lately I’ve been listening to a lot of cooking podcasts. Here are 5 cooking podcasts to listen to this summer as you bake pies and take hikes. I recommend them highly. // susannah
The Dinner Party Download is perhaps one of my favorite podcasts ever, simply for its unabashedly fun and different structure, which is set up in acts like a dinner party. Each week, they interview quirky celebrity guests like Wes Anderson, Amy Schumer or Aubrey Plaza. There’s discussion of food, music and culture — plenty of conversation fodder for your next dinner party. The playlists and recipes are my favorite.
The same folks behind Cook’s Illustrated and the America’s Test Kitchen TV show put together an amazing podcast each week. Host Christopher Kimball and his team taste-test supermarket products in their test kitchen, like gluten-free bread or lemonade, in an effort to find the best taste and value you can buy. They also test recipes for common household dishes, like roasted potatoes or chocolate chip cookies. My favorite part is when the hosts answer listeners’ cooking questions.
American Public Media’s Splendid Table is a Saturday car ride favorite of mine. From host Lynne Rossetto Kasper, this show is all about amazing food ‘for people who love to eat.’ Kasper brings in guests ranging from chefs to cookbook authors to discuss everything from bananas to wine to pasta. There’s also a call-in section during which Kasper herself gives away cooking advice and recipes. This show is awesome for beginner cooks and old chef hats alike.
4. The Sporkful
Dan Pashman’s The Sporkful offers an interesting look at food. As the tagline says, ‘It’s not for foodies, it’s for eaters.’ On a recent episode, Pashman interviewed a North Carolina peanut farmer and talked about the best way to eat peanuts in the shell. (Hint: Take the shell off! I 100% endorse that tip.) There’s a lot more, such as essays on light beer, discussions on sandwiches and questioning the top food trends.
5. Spilled Milk
This is one — I’ll admit — I haven’t listened too as much as the others. Alas, there is only so much time for podcasts! Spilled Milk is hosted by Matthew Amster-Burton and Molly Wizenburg (one of my food blogger idols who opened a restaurant in Seattle!) This one is fun because they pick one type of food per episode and discuss. Pudding, nut butters, scrambled eggs, doughnuts, orange soda — they do it all. And it’s funny.