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The Quintessential eG Kitchen Tips/Trucs

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interesting thought.  I of course don't have an ice maker.

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44 minutes ago, dcarch said:

Depends on what else you have in the freezer. In the winter, there is very little need for ice cubes. I have used ice cubes that are more than a month old, with no off-flavor.

 

dcarch

 What a very strange statement. I use ice all year long. I use ice in my drinks, I use ice to shock my vegetables, I use ice to chill my Sous Vide dishes.  I doubt a day goes by that I do not use ice cubes in one way or another.

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

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We, too, use ice year round. But this time of year, it's often easier to head outside to grab some snow if the ice doesn't touch the food. (This time of year, the walk-out is also often a handy blast chiller, albeit not today when it's supposed to get up to about 40 °F and rain.)

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MelissaH

Oswego, NY

Chemist, writer, hired gun

Say this five times fast: "A big blue bucket of blue blueberries."

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I learned to wear gloves when I rubbed my eye after mincing chilies for pico de gallo.

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41 minutes ago, Chris Ward said:

@rotuts You're welcome. They're pretty common here in France, I've been using them for, well, since I arrived 20 years ago, and I seem to recall using them in the UK too. Perhaps they're less common in the US because so many fridges have ice makers?

They're in pretty much every Canadian supermarket. I suspect they're probably widespread in the US as well, but they're an easy product to overlook if you aren't specifically aware of them and looking for them. 

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"The only questions that really matter are the ones you ask yourself."

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"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

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14 hours ago, dcarch said:

Depends on what else you have in the freezer. In the winter, there is very little need for ice cubes. I have used ice cubes that are more than a month old, with no off-flavor.

 

dcarch

 

Just a moment ago I refilled and replaced four of the five ice cube trays that live in my freezer year round.  And that's an every two or three day ritual in my kitchen.

 

But as to stock, I sometimes freeze a tray of low calcium cubes that I then bag for preparing kombu broth sous vide for making dashi.

 

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13 hours ago, rotuts said:

interesting thought.  I of course don't have an ice maker.

Ice makers are a mixed blessing. When they work...great, But often not. The most frequently malfunctioning thing in a fridge. Mine currently has gone South.

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When you’re making mayonnaise, or stirring crème anglaise, or holding a baby on your hip while working in the kitchen, you may wish you had an extra hand or two.

I learned this trick while trying to make mayonnaise in one of my first restaurant kitchens; the example you see here is me making crème patissière at home. The problem with both these recipes is that you need one hand to do the whisking, a second hand to pour the oil (for mayonnaise) or hot milk (for set custards) and a third one to hold the bowl into which you’re pouring stuff still.

So. Take a heavy saucepan and set it on a teatowel on your work surface. Line it with another teatowel. Jam the mixing bowl into the teatowel-lined saucepan so it stays put.

Now, you can pour with one hand and whisk with the other without the bowl moving around.

IMG_6168.jpg

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Chris Ward

http://eatsleepcookschool.wordpress.com

I wrote a book about learning to cook in the South of France: http://mybook.to/escs

 

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Good one. 

 

Guests at my cooking classes are always amazed when I put the damp tea towel under my cutting board to keep it from moving...you can almost hear the cumulative sound of the pennies dropping. Inexpensive plastic cutting boards often have a textured back, in the pious belief that this helps keep them from slipping, but -- as the Gerswhins put it -- it ain't necessarily so. 

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"The only questions that really matter are the ones you ask yourself."

Ursula K. Le Guin

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

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I frequently Steam_Bake in the CSB.  on its rack above the pan that came w the Cuisi.

 

the meat frequently drops a little between the rack's metal grid , and is hard to then remove when done

 

I now cut a pice of parchment paper slightly smaller than the meat , and slash it here and there but not all the way so it holds up.

 

the meat still drains into the pan below  but no longer cooks itself to the rack.

 

I saw this on the fantastic series  Great British Menu   and more recently , of all places , America's test kitchen

 

I hope you get the idea.

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26 minutes ago, chromedome said:

Good one. 

 

Guests at my cooking classes are always amazed when I put the damp tea towel under my cutting board to keep it from moving...you can almost hear the cumulative sound of the pennies dropping. Inexpensive plastic cutting boards often have a textured back, in the pious belief that this helps keep them from slipping, but -- as the Gerswhins put it -- it ain't necessarily so. 

 

My life changed for the better when I learnt this a few years ago. Great tip.

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my poly boards are always on a dish towel.

 

but it doesn't have to be wet , works fine dry.

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32 minutes ago, chromedome said:

Guests at my cooking classes are always amazed when I put the damp tea towel under my cutting board to keep it from moving...you can almost hear the cumulative sound of the pennies dropping.

 

My mother, the world's worst cook, taught me this about 50 years ago.

And yes, I find dry towels work just as well.


Edited by liuzhou (log)

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I like a piece of nonskid shelf liner instead of a towel, which reduces the amount of laundry the kitchen generates. (The shelf liner can still get thrown in the washing machine if it gets really gross. I air-dry it, which doesn't take long.)

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MelissaH

Oswego, NY

Chemist, writer, hired gun

Say this five times fast: "A big blue bucket of blue blueberries."

foodblog1 | kitchen reno | foodblog2

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Quick tip: To cover or not to cover a saucepan?

I got into a conversation the other day about warming plates. Nowadays it's automatic and I always do it. Before I cooked professionally, it was pretty rare - special occasions only, and then only if I remembered.

Something else that mystified me was: When should you put a lid on saucepans? When boiling potatoes? When making soup? When browning onions for soup? When making stew? And if so, why? Or why not?

In fact, all it takes is a little common sense, like so much in cooking. If you're heating things up to cook them - boiling potatoes, making soup - then put the lid on. It reduces the cooking time and reduces the energy you need. If you're trying to colour something, or reduce it down - caramelising onions for soup, or thickening a sauce - then leave the lid off to let the steam out. If you keep the lid on then, duh, it won't reduce.


Chris Ward

http://eatsleepcookschool.wordpress.com

I wrote a book about learning to cook in the South of France: http://mybook.to/escs

 

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On 10/02/2017 at 5:48 PM, Chris Ward said:

Quick tip: To cover or not to cover a saucepan?

I got into a conversation the other day about warming plates. Nowadays it's automatic and I always do it. Before I cooked professionally, it was pretty rare - special occasions only, and then only if I remembered.

Something else that mystified me was: When should you put a lid on saucepans? When boiling potatoes? When making soup? When browning onions for soup? When making stew? And if so, why? Or why not?

In fact, all it takes is a little common sense, like so much in cooking. If you're heating things up to cook them - boiling potatoes, making soup - then put the lid on. It reduces the cooking time and reduces the energy you need. If you're trying to colour something, or reduce it down - caramelising onions for soup, or thickening a sauce - then leave the lid off to let the steam out. If you keep the lid on then, duh, it won't reduce.

 

Lids are excellent tools.  I use them all the time - for most vegetables, I cook them à l'étuvée, just in oil and covered until done.

 

They're also useful as shields when you need to manipulate things that have a tendency to splash hot fat at you :)

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7 hours ago, jmacnaughtan said:

 

Lids are excellent tools.  I use them all the time - for most vegetables, I cook them à l'étuvée, just in oil and covered until done.

 

They're also useful as shields when you need to manipulate things that have a tendency to splash hot fat at you :)

The French also call this "legumes à la greque", no idea why.

Also handy shields when fighting off dragons.


Chris Ward

http://eatsleepcookschool.wordpress.com

I wrote a book about learning to cook in the South of France: http://mybook.to/escs

 

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I recently found out I could remove 75% of the salt from canned veggies just by draining the water and rinsing the veggies.  Excellent.  


Edited by Smithy Adjusted title (log)
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Plus, some grocery stores carry "no salt added" canned veggies. You usually find them on the shelves next to the regular (salt added) canned veggies. I find that even if I add salt to the "no salt added" veggies, it's far less salt than what you find in the regular canned veggies.


 

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On 27/03/2017 at 11:23 PM, Tammy said:

I recently found out I could remove 75% of the salt from canned veggies just by draining the water and rinsing the veggies.  Excellent.  

 

 

Yes. If you discard most of what you buy you usually get rid of at least 75% of whatever it contained.

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Make a drink and start!  Some new and some old.  I find the spaghetti hotdog dish silly but great for involving kids in the cooking process.xD

 

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Darn, maybe the moderator will move my post to one of there.

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3 hours ago, Okanagancook said:

Make a drink and start!  Some new and some old.  I find the spaghetti hotdog dish silly but great for involving kids in the cooking process.xD

 

 

Thanks. Is that onion or fennel in the container with the half of an avocado?


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