I have spent hours scouring the internet for good cooking websites. With all that time spent I only ever found one website that really was what I was looking for. I'm sure the millions of people who are trying to teach themselves to cook know what I'm talking about.
You want a site that has great instructions, good visuals, gives you confidence in the quality of their recipes, explains unknown culinary terms, and while their at it, they might as well give it all to you in a easy to use attractive interface.
That website Rouxbe is so good that even now that I am enrolled in a culinary program I still get excited every time I receive an email telling me there is a new recipe posted.
The site was created by Chefs from the western part of the country (that would be Canada) and for every recipe they have a video with audio step by step instructions as well as text recipes. Some of the extras that make this site so great include opt in video's of special techniques or culinary terms that the user might or might not be familiar with, as well as funky music that somehow always matches the feel of the meal being prepared.
This week they came out with a very adventurous project: they have created videos and recipes guidelines for creating a multiple course thanksgiving dinner. They have everything from the turkey to the pumpkin pie. They allow you to customize what recipes your interested in, provide you with a planning checklist and even break down each step from what you should do 2-3 days before, right up to plating and carving the turkey.
I'm a little disappointed that they didn't have this out for the Canadian thanksgiving (not that I would have been able to justify creating such a feast) but at least it's out with plenty of time for Christmas. Everything looks so amazing, and it looks like so much fun to coordinate all of the dishes that I'm considering doing a scaled down version for two.
The recipes they've compiled include:
Pumpkin Pie with Maple Whipped Cream
Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake
Cassis Cranberry Sauce
Garlic-Proscuitto Baked Brussels Sprouts
Buttery Mashed Potatoes
Roasted Turkey with GravySigning up initially is free, to continue after a certain period you have to hook yourself up with a sponser, but this is pretty stress free (it pretty much involves clicking a few links and having a small banner at the top of the page when you visit) , and its well worth it.
And another exciting thing about Rouxbe, they are actually opening up the first ever online cooking school in 2008. It looks like its going to be really great. I wish I had had that type of resource before I paid the money to attend a brick and morter version.