Elsa M. Jacobson, Recipe Tester

A list of all the recipes Elsa M. Jacobson has tested.

Elsa Jacobson

Elsa M Jacobson is the child of a Swede and an Eagle Scout, which, as her pal Breadman has said, “explains everything.” Her father the Eagle Scout was also Jewish, so she had the pleasures of a dual dining culture growing up. She has been vegetarian since the age of nine, and has never looked back. After graduating valedictorian with a BFA in Fiber, she worked for the National Endowment for the Arts, the Brooklyn Academy of Music, and Merce Cunningham Dance Company, followed by Event Managing AIDS Walks nationwide, and subsequently serving as Regional Director for Chicago’s Green Festival. She loves to study and has taken Swedish classes wherever she can find them, including both Columbia and Harvard. She currently manages three neighborhood farmers markets in Chicago, and vends arguably the nation’s finest tofu at three others, while also providing tofu education to customers and staff trainees. She has a deep interest in cheese of all types, has taught cheese and cheese making, and assisted chefs at cooking schools, among them Sur La Table, as well as testing recipes for other publications. Elsa is an avid environmentalist, a Chicago Conservation Corps leader, has worked for the Chicago Park District, serves for an organization that upcycles plastic grocery bags into sleeping mats for the homeless, as well as on the operating committee of the Chicago Volunteer Expo. She has a passion for seniors, and has served on the board of multiple senior homes for the past two decades. Elsa additionally has a strong passion for community, and lives in an intentional community dedicated to greening and sustainability. She is curious, nerdy, enjoys process and details, has a quirky sense of humor, loves being of service, and is, at her core, 100% an introvert. She was accepted into the ranks of LC testers on December 7, 2006 after taking a food journalism class with the fat daddy himself, David Leite.

A loaf of applesauce bread in a parchment-lined loaf pan

Applesauce Bread

Comfort finds us in unexpected ways. And thank goodness for that—and thank goodness for this not-too-sweet, subtly apple-y, kid-friendly quick bread.

  • (24)
  • 10 M
  • 1 H, 30 M
  • 68
A white oval platter topped with fresh mozzarella with roasted stone fruit and toasted bread pieces.

Mozzarella with Roasted Stone Fruit

Sensual. Sumptuousity. Sexy. Just a few of the lovely words we’re hearing in conjunction with this stunner of a summer supper. Can’t quite be described. Just experienced.

  • Quick Glance
  • 20 M
  • 40 M
  • 0
A white oval serving dish filled with pickled carrots.

Pickled Carrots

Perhaps the quickest pickles ever, these tongue-tinglingly tangy specimens stack flavor on flavor all in the span of a few minutes of work and a few hours of waiting.

  • (2)
  • 5 M
  • 45 M
  • 6
A person mashing avocado into a bowl of easy guacamole on a table with salt, avocado, cilantro, lime, and chiles.

Easy Guacamole

Easy as heck, this guacamole takes a minimalistic approach that keeps ingredients to the essentials yet doesn’t disappoint. Sorta tricky to come by that these days. And yet here we are.

  • (1)
  • 15 M
  • 15 M
  • 14
A couple slices of plum-blueberry upside-down cake on a white plate with a knife resting on the edge of the plate.

Plum-Blueberry Upside-Down Cake

This purple-stained cake—er, what’s left of it—calls for just old-fashioned goodness and the season’s most compelling fruits. Got milk?

  • (2)
  • 20 M
  • 1 H, 30 M
  • 11
A white bowl filled with sautéed summer squash with a sprinkle of Parmesan on top and a small bowl of Parmesan on the side.

Sautéed Summer Squash

Five ingredients. Fifteen minutes. And with just that you’re rewarded with an enticing side that doesn’t make you dread being healthy. Quite the opposite, actually.

  • (2)
  • 15 M
  • 15 M
  • 4
A ball of burrata for burrata with grilled bread sitting in a few tablespoons of oil in a white bowl.

Burrata with Grilled Bread

This is less a recipe and more a reminder as to the fact that some nights, simple cheese and bread and olive oil makes a perfectly respectable—enviable, even—supper.

  • (1)
  • 10 M
  • 15 M
  • 8
A basting brush with chipotle maple barbecue sauce

Chipotle Maple Barbecue Sauce

This indescribably must-have-more-of-this sauce boasts the complex sweetness of maple syrup and the smoky spice of chipotle peppers. Slather it at will.

  • (2)
  • 5 M
  • 40 M
  • 6
Almond and coconut granola scattered on a baking sheet with a spoon resting in the center.

Almond and Coconut Granola

An inspired take on a classic, this simple, sassy granola recipe is yours to follow to the letter or tweak to your (or your most picky family member’s) content.

  • (5)
  • 15 M
  • 55 M
  • 15