Cooking

Whether you can whip up flambé with ease, or you just learned how to boil water, Central Market is your recipe mecca. Learn how to use fresh and interesting ingredients, plus score tips from our experts. Wow the crowd with dishes that delight and excite. The best part? You get all the bragging rights.

Your Secret Weapon to Grilling Success: Fennel Pollen


San Francisco Chronicle food writer Peggy Knickerbocker once described fennel pollen as “the spice angels sprinkle on their wings.” Back then, more than a decade ago, fennel pollen—yes, the pretty yellow dust that falls from fennel when it flowers—primarily was found in Italy. These days it’s a rather trendy ingredient, popping up on the menus of high-end restaurants. According to James Beard nominee Hank Shaw, who wrote about gathering his own fennel pollen in The Atlantic, “it has a beguiling anise flavor that is unlike that of the rest of the plant. The pollen tastes warmer and rounder than either the seeds or the bulb.”

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White Wines for Spice


We know how you chile heads love your spicy foods, and Central Market certainly knows how to bring the heat. But we also know a thing or two about what wines complement the spice to make it nice. Here are a couple of suggestions:

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Barramundi: A Better Fish


Also known as Asian sea bass, barramundi has long been regarded as a premier fish in its native waters, from northern Australia up to Southeast Asia and west to the coasts of India and Sri Lanka. Because of its mild, buttery flavor, meaty texture and cooking versatility, it’s been catching on as a culinary trend in North America and Europe.

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Hake, the Other White Fish


Hake is the Rodney Dangerfield of the white fish world. It just can’t get any respect. At least that has been the story in America, where hake has been simply sold as whitefish or simply “fried fish.”

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A Stone Fruit Primer


Stone fruit season is upon us, and we have an amazing variety of peaches, plums, nectarines, apricots, pluots and apriums. In fact, there are so many varieties that even we get confused sometimes, so here’s a little lesson in fruit, with help from the California Tree Fruit Agreement and from Fruit and Veggies: More Matters. We’re reaching the peak of season, so be sure to hurry into Central Market and pick up these sweet, juicy fruits.

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Raw Milk Cheese vs. Pasteurized Milk Cheese: Which Is Better?


Lately, we’ve heard a lot of buzz on the virtues of raw milk cheese, but does it really taste better? Raw milk cheeses are not pasteurized. Milk is taken directly from the cow and brought to the correct temperature for culturing—which varies from cheese to cheese—without the use of any heat pasteurization. Pasteurized cheeses use milk that has been brought up to a high temperature to kill bacteria according to legal limits set by the FDA and then undergoes culturing.

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Shrimping with Central Market


Have you ever walked up to our Seafood counter in awe at the variety of finfish and shellfish? We certainly do, and we see it every day! One thing we do know: there is a right way and a wrong way to cook shrimp. We’ve all had the unfortunate experience of trying to eat tough, rubbery, overcooked shrimp. To prevent that from happening, we’ve compiled some fool-proof tips for shelling, deveining, storing and cooking shrimp.

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How To Cook Central Market Signature Sausages


At Central Market, we make our sausage fresh in-store every day from high-quality cuts of pork, beef and chicken, flavoring it with a wide array of spices, herbs, cheeses, vegetables and other tasty tidbits. Look for up to 20 varieties on any given day.

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How Do You Like Your Asparagus?


Asparagus season is getting into full swing, and Central Market has all three sizes right now: small, standard and large. So what do you do with each?

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How To Store and Cook Live Lobster


The North American Lobster is available year round, though the best fishing seasons are late spring and fall. Lobsters are found from Eastern Canada down to North Carolina, but the bulk of the U.S. lobsters come from Maine, where size limits are enforced.

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