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Cooking for the left-brained

Is your culinary expertise limited to boxed mac 'n cheese and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches? For those with minds for engineering but who don't know the difference between cumin and coriander, there is hope. A Web site called Cooking for Engineers will help the culinarily challenged find their way around a kitchen and whip up some impressive dishes. From Thanksgiving turkey to tiramisu, analytically minded cooks will appreciate the detail with which hardware application engineer Michael Chu describes the cooking process. Each recipe comes with clear, step-by-step instructions with pictures taken along the way, and--for those visual learners--an ingenius little chart that breaks down the recipe's ingredients and cooking steps.

In addition to recipes, the site has features such as a breakdown of the parts of a knife and an in-depth look at what common container materials are microwave-safe. Readers can even find the occasional kitchen experiment, such as a two-part assessment of six different ways to cook bacon.