Parallel processing: Couscous cooks in the coffee maker's carafe while broccoli and cauliflower steam in the basket. Morgan Walker/ NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Morgan Walker/ NPR

Cooking on gas and electric stoves can create indoor air pollution. The best way to avoid it is to buy a good range hood that vents outside, experts say. iStockphoto.com hide caption

itoggle caption iStockphoto.com

Food writer Dan Pashman says poached pears are great in the dishwasher. We're not sure about the asparagus, but we'll let you know after the cycle finishes. Maggie Starbard/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Maggie Starbard/NPR

Lump charcoal can burn hotter and can be made with specific woods that impart desirable flavors on food. Andy Ciordia/via Flickr hide caption

itoggle caption Andy Ciordia/via Flickr

For a "Cooking With Snow" class taught through Knowledge Commons DC, instructor Willie Shubert made baobing, a shaved ice dessert from China. Courtesy of Rachel Sadon hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Rachel Sadon

Called a boyo or bulema, this Turkish-style pastry was traditionally made for the Jewish Shabbat. Today, boyos are mostly reserved for holidays like Hanukkah. Deena Prichep for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Deena Prichep for NPR

The mortar and pestle can be found in kitchens around the world, including Thailand. In the United States, chef Tanasapamon Rohman uses the tool to grind up chili paste and pulverize rice at her Thai restaurant. Jessical Spengler/Flickr hide caption

itoggle caption Jessical Spengler/Flickr

In another era, this plate of Spanish mackerel topped with wild tamarack, basswood leaves, garlic mustard, fiddlehead ferns, and knotweed might seem cheap. Not anymore. Courtesy of Leif Hedendal hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Leif Hedendal

Linh Nguyen teaches the traditional Vietnamese recipes she learned from her mother and aunts to students at a Culture Kitchen class. Deena Prichep for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Deena Prichep for NPR

Students of the the Dawes School Edible Garden Project, a program of Slow Food Chicago. Dawes School Edible Garden Project via Slow Foods USA hide caption

itoggle caption Dawes School Edible Garden Project via Slow Foods USA