Melissa Maedgen, Recipe Tester

A list of all the recipes Melissa Maedgen has tested.

Melissa Maedgen

Melissa Maedgen owes her passion for cooking and gardening to her parents. Like her mom and dad, she’s fond of improvisational cooking with a focus on fresh produce from her garden or from local farmers. She enjoys cooking outdoors, sometimes in a particularly rustic manner—she once roasted a goat on a spit (actually just a piece of rebar) over a fire in a field in Texas. Maedgen was raised to be a DIYer, so she often makes her own tofu or beer. She’s been following Leite’s Culinaria since 2001, when she was studying Portuguese and developed an interest in Brazilian and Portuguese food. She became a tester in 2009 and loves that she gets to cook foods she might not otherwise make.

Skewers of thinly sliced Thai grilled pork or Moo Yang, on a metal tray in a street food vendor's cart

Thai Grilled Pork | Moo Yang

We can certainly understand why street food has catapulted into trendiness. Assuming, that is, it all tastes as soulful as these skewers that are hawked on seemingly every street in Thailand.

  • Quick Glance
  • 10 M
  • 1 H, 40 M
  • 13
A plate of zucchini slaw two ways with strips of zucchini, yellow summer squash, bell pepper and two dressings

Zucchini Slaw Two Ways

Never give zucchini away again with these equally tempting yet uniquely different slaws. You get to choose—rich and creamy or tart and sweet.

  • 25 M
  • 25 M
  • 8
A white plate of zucchini linguine--with pasta, zucchini, garlic, capers, mint, dill, and cheese with a fork

Zucchini Linguine

This zucchini linguine is a panoply of summer abundance with summer squash and herbs crowding out the usual pasta sauce suspects. No complaints here.

  • Quick Glance
  • 30 M
  • 30 M
  • 0
Blue pot of chunks of pork, authentic carnitas, with a bay leaf and wooden spoon on top

Authentic Carnitas

This Mexican carnitas recipe is authentic braised and fried pork that’s fall-apart-tender pork goodness ready for tacos.

Grapefruit Campari Popsicles

Campari and Grapefruit Popsicles

After trying these, you just may need to purchase a second popsicle mold—one to keep separate and at the ready for mommy’s special popsicles.

  • Quick Glance
  • 15 M
  • 1 D
  • 0
Spiced Chicken with Roasted Cauliflower Tagine

Best Negroni

We upended the proportions of gin, vermouth, and Campari to create a better, stiffer, spiffier negroni cocktail.

  • Quick Glance
  • 5 M
  • 5 M
  • 4
An empty pot and spoon with just a little spicy bourbon barbecue sauce at the bottom on wood

Spicy Bourbon Barbecue Sauce

The secret ingredient to this spicy sauce? Nope. Not bourbon. We said secret. It’s smoked ketchup. (Yup. You heard correctly.) Bacon, too.

  • 10 M
  • 2 H, 40 M
  • 8
Fork with lobster salad and tomato salad, two small leaves of basil

Lobster Salad

A tumult of sensations, this cool, creamy, simple salad juxtaposes tastes and textures to fancy schmancy effect.

  • Quick Glance
  • 45 M
  • 1 H
  • 9
Perfect Baked Bacon

Baked Bacon

A ridiculously easy way to cook bacon for a crowd. No fuss. No standing at the stovetop. No spatters.

  • 5 M
  • 25 M
  • 46
Carrot Hot Dog

Carrot Hot Dog

The taste of this fantastic carrot hot dog recipe is going to upend everything you thought you knew about being vegan.

  • 30 M
  • 3 H, 30 M
  • 20
Grilled Flank Steak With Chile Spice Rub

Grilled Flank Steak

If you can master this über basic recipe, you can grill a steak waaaaay better than any of your friends. Promise.

  • 30 M
  • 1 H, 40 M
  • 4