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What's cooking in the L.A. Times Test Kitchen

February 1, 2011 |  5:31 pm


Not to give you any hints about upcoming recipes or anything, but that apple butter cake being photographed above is probably one of the best cakes I've ever had. In my life. The recipe, from Huckleberry Bakery & Cafe, was a reader's request for a possible Culinary SOS recipe. The finished product incorporates almond meal and cornmeal with whole wheat and all-purpose flours for a dense but wonderfully crumbly texture. Not too sweet, it's wonderfully rich, with no shortage of butter and a nice tang from generous apple chunks.

I don't have a run date yet, but I'll keep you posted when this future Culinary SOS is scheduled to run.

Today, the Test Kitchen has been testing and vetting potential Culinary SOS recipes, with possibilities ranging from a mushroom barley soup to warm apple butter cake (above), lamb lasagna and a truffled macaroni and cheese dish. We've even made a couple of attempts at one restaurant's veggie burger.

Culinary SOS is a weekly column where readers write in requesting their favorite restaurant or bakery recipes. We receive around 100 reader requests a month, and do what we can to track down each recipe. Recipes we receive are tested -- and frequently retested (as many times as needed) -- as we adapt and fine-tune them for the home kitchen. Finally, one recipe is selected to run every week. 

In addition to managing our Test Kitchen, I also write and manage the Culinary SOS column. If you have a favorite restaurant recipe you'd like to request, feel free to e-mail me at noelle.carter@latimes.com. I'll do my best to track down the recipe.

 -- Noelle Carter

twitter / noellecarter

Photo: Noelle Carter / Los Angeles Times