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What's the best hint/tip you found this year?


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On Jan 2 2009, 12:58 PM, Toliver said:

On Dec 31 2008, 02:36 PM, dockhl said:

somewhere here I found the suggestion to cut the tendons on your drumsticks before cooking. What a difference! I used to hate the little buggers and now they are one of my favorite tender little morsels.


I think this trick was originally posted in either a discussion about spatchcocking or cooking Thanksgiving turkies by eGullet member slkinsey. And it is a great tip, indeed.

:blush: This is perhaps my single greatest contribution to eGullet (originally appearing here as part of an offhand comment in a discussion about chicken skin). Edited by slkinsey (log)

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On Jan 4 2009, 09:36 AM, slkinsey said:

On Jan 2 2009, 12:58 PM, Toliver said:

On Dec 31 2008, 02:36 PM, dockhl said:

somewhere here I found the suggestion to cut the tendons on your drumsticks before cooking. What a difference! I used to hate the little buggers and now they are one of my favorite tender little morsels.


I think this trick was originally posted in either a discussion about spatchcocking or cooking Thanksgiving turkies by eGullet member slkinsey. And it is a great tip, indeed.

:blush: This is perhaps my single greatest contribution to eGullet (originally appearing here as part of an offhand comment in a discussion about chicken skin).



We MUST preserve this as the KINSEY TECHNIQUE from now on. So be it.
:wink:
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Abra, I'm with you. That was the first thing that I thought about when I read the posts. I won't heat up leftovers in plastic containers anymore. We purchased Pyrex containers that have plastic lids. I don't put the lids in the microwave. I just use glass.

"My only regret in life is that I did not drink more Champagne."

John Maynard Keynes

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Ok, this is off topic, but, help me understand the no plastic usage.  No non-stick pans either?  Have they been proven unsafe?

They havent been proven safe, that's the issue as I understand it.

Happy Feasting

Janet (a.k.a The Old Foodie)

My Blog "The Old Foodie" gives you a short food history story each weekday day, always with a historic recipe, and sometimes a historic menu.

My email address is: theoldfoodie@fastmail.fm

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My favorite new tip involves de-seeding/watering tomatoes before dicing.  Cut the tomato in half through the stem, cup it in your hand, and scoop out the seeds/watery stuff with your fingers, as if you were "shaking hands with the tomato."  That either came from someone here, or Marcella Hazen, I can't figure out which.  It's so simple, but thinking- shake hands with the tomato - de-soggified many a dish involving diced tomatoes.

Great tip, but this is easier if you cut the tomato in half the other way (i.e., not through the stem, but through the equator, as it were) -- it opens up all the seed pockets and they all just pop right out.

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I am trying to find a way to reasonably cook 150 individual eggs at once, so the egg poaching tip intrigued me. (They could also potentially be baked or fried, just not scrambled or hard boiled, if anyone has suggestions)

Since I already use the heavyweight Vaccuum sealer bags for the boil-in-bag cooking technique, and figure thaat since they're marketed for this application they should presumably be "safer" than the clingwrap, I tried varying the method by putting my eggs into little vaccum bags. They did indeed cook perfectly, so the tip is awesome from that perspective, but they came out as scary looking industrially square pillow shaped eggs :shock: just not appetizing!

I'm going to try baking eggs in muffin tins & then reheating them stovetop for my next round of "eggsperiments" since we will not have spare oven space at the time we want the eggs

Do you suffer from Acute Culinary Syndrome? Maybe it's time to get help...

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Eden:

Can we see a picture of one of the square eggs?? That sounds interesting looking. You could build a foodscape of a bed with a poached egg pillow...

Reminds me of the hyper-hybridized square watermelons that Japanese farmers created for better shipping and easir storage.

Katie M. Loeb
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I am trying to find a way to reasonably cook 150 individual eggs at once, so the egg poaching tip intrigued me.  (They could also potentially be baked or fried, just not scrambled or hard boiled, if anyone has suggestions)

Since I already use the heavyweight Vaccuum sealer bags for the boil-in-bag cooking technique, and figure thaat since they're marketed for this application they should presumably be "safer" than the clingwrap, I tried varying the method by putting my eggs into little vaccum bags.  They did indeed cook perfectly, so the tip is awesome from that perspective, but they came out as scary looking industrially square pillow shaped eggs  :shock:  just not appetizing!

I'm going to try baking eggs in muffin tins & then reheating them stovetop for my next round of "eggsperiments" since we will not have spare oven space at the time we want the eggs

I50 is a lot of eggs. I have cooked 48 individual eggs in coddlers (the ring on the lids of the coddlers were "strung" on metal rods.

I have tried muffin tins - nonstick - using a pat of butter and 1/4 cup of water added after the egg - to cook eggs in the oven (also a similar application with the larger muffin tins with the eggs on a layer of corned beef hash).

However there are now tins that are a lovely half round that should be perfect for eggs - I have been intending to buy some but not yet gotten around to it.

like these half ball pan

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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It seems like you could poach the eggs in batches to the right doneness, then cool them in an ice-water bath instantly (you can trim or pull off any stringy white mess at this point), then reheat them when needed in a warm-water bath (not hot enough to further cook the yolk).

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An old trick for keeping the white from feathering out is to briefly dip the unbroken egg in very hot water - not boiling - before breaking the egg into the poaching liquid.

Back when I was doing some catering, I used the poachers similar to #s 5 and 6 on this page:

egg poachers

mine are very old and there are four fastened together with a center lifting shaft.

I used one or two electric roasters to cook the eggs and held them at serving temp in a large electric chafer.

poached eggs can be transfered to and held in cold water (or even in milk, which was a technique I was taught when I took a class from a French chef back in the early '70s) in the fridge for 2-3 days.

There is some very good information on the following page:

poached egg info

A check on ebay turned up this and I have seen the full size ones for a steam table at a restaurant supply

steam table poacher

by Volrath: Steam table egg poacher

Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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That's interesting. I always, before poaching, bring my eggs up to temperature (from the fridge) in tap water as hot as the sink will make it. It always seems the whites set faster this way without stringing.

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I am trying to find a way to reasonably cook 150 individual eggs at once, so the egg poaching tip intrigued me.  (They could also potentially be baked or fried, just not scrambled or hard boiled, if anyone has suggestions)

Since I already use the heavyweight Vaccuum sealer bags for the boil-in-bag cooking technique, and figure thaat since they're marketed for this application they should presumably be "safer" than the clingwrap, I tried varying the method by putting my eggs into little vaccum bags.  They did indeed cook perfectly, so the tip is awesome from that perspective, but they came out as scary looking industrially square pillow shaped eggs  :shock:  just not appetizing!

I'm going to try baking eggs in muffin tins & then reheating them stovetop for my next round of "eggsperiments" since we will not have spare oven space at the time we want the eggs

If you were serving a "breakfast meat" with these eggs I remember something form a childrens cookbook.....take a slice of salami...or whatever and push into muffin tin - add egg and bake...the nice greasy meats dont stick to the tin

Mmm baked taylor ham and eggs

tracey

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Not the best trick in the world but still a nice discovery to me: you can freeze toasts. I can buy a nice loaf of bread and partly grill them on a grill-pan to get nice char marks, then freeze them. You can then pop them in their frozen state in the toaster oven to defrost them and finish toasting them... this way you can get nicely charred toast will the grill marks and all and that wonderful campfire smell without getting the grill-pan out. I find it is a great way to use extra bread.

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Eden:

Can we see a picture of one of the square eggs??  That sounds interesting looking.  You could build a foodscape of a bed with a poached egg pillow...

Reminds me of the hyper-hybridized square watermelons that Japanese farmers created for better shipping and easir storage.

Funny it was reminding me of the old Japanese square egg widget.

If I make another batch this way I will post photos, but yes it would work perfectly in said foodscape :laugh:

there are now tins that are a lovely half round that should be perfect for eggs - I have been intending to buy some but not yet gotten around to it.

like these half ball pan

You're killing me! I just got rid of an easter egg muffin pan like this one, but without the decorations, that would have worked beautifully because "I was never gong to use it" :wacko:

Do you suffer from Acute Culinary Syndrome? Maybe it's time to get help...

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Not the best trick in the world but still a nice discovery to me: you can freeze toasts. I can buy a nice loaf of bread and partly grill them on a grill-pan to get nice char marks, then freeze them. You can then pop them in their frozen state in the toaster oven to defrost them and finish toasting them... this way you can get nicely charred toast will the grill marks and all and that wonderful campfire smell without getting the grill-pan out. I find it is a great way to use extra bread.

you can also reheat in the oven if you're making more than your toaster will hold.

Do you suffer from Acute Culinary Syndrome? Maybe it's time to get help...

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Now, if you could poach eggs in perfect triangle, then they'd fit nicely on a slice of toast.

It can be done! I saw someone once use the plastic wrap trick and then place the egg into a triangle made from heavy-duty aluminum foil shaped to toast-half dimensions. Follow the rest of the directions, peel off everything (saving the foil triangles), and viola!

My best tip from last year, prompted by too many good experiences with Rancho Gordo dried beans, showed up in Mark Bittman's Minimalist article today. Each week, cook a batch of dried beans and keep them in the fridge. It's cheaper and much better than using canned, and if you have a Food Saver they last for a long time in there.

Chris Amirault

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My best tip from last year, prompted by too many good experiences with Rancho Gordo dried beans, showed up in Mark Bittman's Minimalist article today. Each week, cook a batch of dried beans and keep them in the fridge. It's cheaper and much better than using canned, and if you have a Food Saver they last for a long time in there.

And, if you are not going to get through all of them in a week, stick them in the freezer. Next time you need a dip, just puree the thawed beans and add whatever. Dip out of something you would have just otherwise pitched.

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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Now, if you could poach eggs in perfect triangle, then they'd fit nicely on a slice of toast.

You can do it easily in one of the cornbread, "scone" or "mini-scone" bakers that are divided into triangle shape sections.

Simply line with the plastic wrap and proceed as usual.

Mini-scone pan by Nordicware

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Am I the only person who worries about plastics leaching into my food?  That clingfilm idea gives me the willies.

Not at all! In addition, I will never reheat an item in plastic containers in the microwave - even though they swear it's microwave safe. That stuff *does* leach into your food. Just do a quick search on bis-phenol-a (PBA).

Also, I no longer automatically reach for the non-stick pan. I only use one if absolutely necessary - and would really prefer to eliminate the use of one altogether.

John DePaula
formerly of DePaula Confections
Hand-crafted artisanal chocolates & gourmet confections - …Because Pleasure Matters…
--------------------
When asked “What are the secrets of good cooking? Escoffier replied, “There are three: butter, butter and butter.”

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Just the other day, reading the minimalist kitchen thread here, I learned that when you're camping/fishing, the boat's paddle makes a fine cutting board! Not that I can foresee using this bit of info any time soon, but it's good to know.

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Am I the only person who worries about plastics leaching into my food?  That clingfilm idea gives me the willies.

Also, I no longer automatically reach for the non-stick pan. I only use one if absolutely necessary - and would really prefer to eliminate the use of one altogether.

I actually just purchased 2 carbon steel skillets for this exact reason. We'll see how the seasoning goes.

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I am trying to find a way to reasonably cook 150 individual eggs at once, so the egg poaching tip intrigued me.  (They could also potentially be baked or fried, just not scrambled or hard boiled, if anyone has suggestions)

Since I already use the heavyweight Vaccuum sealer bags for the boil-in-bag cooking technique, and figure thaat since they're marketed for this application they should presumably be "safer" than the clingwrap, I tried varying the method by putting my eggs into little vaccum bags.  They did indeed cook perfectly, so the tip is awesome from that perspective, but they came out as scary looking industrially square pillow shaped eggs  :shock:   just not appetizing!

I'm going to try baking eggs in muffin tins & then reheating them stovetop for my next round of "eggsperiments" since we will not have spare oven space at the time we want the eggs

For "Fried" eggs, use muffin-top pans if you have them. A place I worked at bought them for just this reason when we made large amounts of breakfast sandwiches. Crack the eggs into the in-dents (spray with pan spray first), then bakin the oven until done. Eggs can be cooled and the sandwiches can be assembled and re-heated to melt the cheese as necessary.

Oops - just saw that oven space will not be available! Oh well, I got nothin' then!

Edited by LizD518 (log)
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