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What am I doing with these things?


tafkap4d
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We are moving and I am emptying my cupboards and cabinets and here is a sampling of what I found:

steel cut oat groats? Why and what for?

Soy vinegar

Ginger vinegar

I also found some saffron - quite a bit - I don't remember where I bought it or why but it nicely sealed. What is the shelf life on this?

Any recs for using these products - of course not necessarily together.

Edited by tafkap4d (log)
Whoever said that man cannot live by bread alone...simply did not know me.
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We are moving and I am emptying my cupboards and cabinets and here is a sampling of what I found:

steel cut oat groats?  Why and what for?

Make Steel Cut Oatmeal, aka Irish Oatmeal. Its very hearty!

Soy vinegar & Ginger vinegar

When I have an unusual vinegar flavor I don't care for in regular usage I thin it out with fruit juice and/or water to use as a deglazing liquid.

I also found some saffron - quite a bit -  I don't remember where I bought it or why but it nicely sealed.  What is the shelf life on this?

Can't help you with this one. I have some saffron myself that I bought who-knows-how-many years ago and have never used. :sad:

SB (would be afraid to clean his cupboards :unsure: )

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I have toyed with the idea of doing a foodblog along the lines of "I'm cleaning out my cabinets. Help me make something with this stuff." It sounds like I'm not the only person in this boat!

Saffron is lovely in certain breads or in risotto. Most recently I've been mixing it with paprika and whatever other spices grab my fancy (always garlic and salt) and oil, smearing that on a chicken and roasting said chicken. Try it, you'll like it!

...and if you don't, you can send that saffron to me. :wink:

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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I have toyed with the idea of doing a foodblog along the lines of "I'm cleaning out my cabinets.  Help me make something with this stuff."  It sounds like I'm not the only person in this boat!

Saffron is lovely in certain breads or in risotto.  Most recently I've been mixing it with paprika and whatever other spices grab my fancy (always garlic and salt) and oil, smearing that on a chicken and roasting said chicken.  Try it, you'll like it!

...and if you don't, you can send that saffron to me.  :wink:

I just dug into my cupboard and found my saffron. It's Kashmir Mogra Cream Saffron I got from Penzeys.

I think it's reputation as exotic and expensive must have intimidated me? Today it sells for $11.49/gram. Not cheap, but no big deal either. I have a recipe for Saffron Bread somebody gave me, so I left the package out where I can easily find it again.

SB (also found a bag of nutmegs I forgot I had, and a lot of birthday candles and muffin cups)(saffron and nutmeg birthday cupcakes anyone?)

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A recent cupboard cleaning revealed not one, not two, not three but FOUR containers of cream of tartar. One so old it bears a price sticker of $.11. I'm on a mission (to get rid of stuff that's old, that is).

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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I don't even want to look in my cupboards to see what might be there, but I do know I also have a bag of saffron, brought to me from Egypt by friends who travelled there. I also have no idea what to do with it.

Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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I also found an ancient can of cream of tartar last week along with a jar of sour salt purchased around 1960 for a stuffed cabbage recipe given to me by my late Aunt Ida. I've moved several times since 1960 and for the life of me don't know why I keep taking the sour salt with me. :wacko:

Ilene

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I don't even want to look in my cupboards to see what might be there, but I do know I also have a bag of saffron, brought to me from Egypt by friends who travelled there.  I also have no idea what to do with it.

I hate to say this, but given the source it's probably really dried marigold petals. It's actually difficult to get Real Saffron in Egypt unless you know exactly where to look, whom to talk to and what it really looks like. I've brought back Egyptian "saffron" in the past and know whereof I speak. It adds nice color but little else. An easy test is to drop a bit of it into boiled water and see how much color and smell you get from it. Saffron threads are very fine; marigold petals a bit fatter for their length; saffron threads will give you odor and color; marigold petals the color only.

I still blush at the memory of bringing back a large bag of "saffron" from Egypt and sharing the bounty with a friend who is a good and curious cook. Eventually I realized my mistake, but by then he'd probably lost all respect for me. :blink:

FOUR containers of cream of tartar.  One so old it bears a price sticker of $.11. 

Sell it on eBay!

SB :wacko:

Absolutely! :laugh:

I still remember opening up my treasured can of baker's ammonia (a.k.a. hartshorn), bought one year from King Arther Flour for the express purpose of baking some Norwegian cookie or other. By the time I got around to it, all the contents had sublimated from the sealed can. :raz:

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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Maybe you can help me with this one -- I placed an order with Zingerman's and it took so long to come they threw in a bag of wild rice for free. Very nice except that I've never been able to find a recipe that appealed to me. It's intimidating stuff. Dark and HARD looking.

Ha, I went amok in Aswan with the spices, too, and bought saffron. I kept it for years before I threw it out without ever attempting to use it. But I have to say, that was back in the day when I had an exposed spice rack and I used to love looking at the colors, so I think I got my money's worth.

I once discovered a cache of about a hundred little packs of Taco Bell hot sauce. I had already discovered a recipe for a hot sauce I make and freeze for these occassions by then, but the container smelled really good.

I like to bake nice things. And then I eat them. Then I can bake some more.

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Use the sour salt for borscht.

Boil the wild rice in plenty of water until it's puffed up and opened. Use it in soup (a turkey broth with vegetables and wild rice is great - or the creamy version) or make a salad with it. We make one with toasted almonds, dried cranberries and oranges - the dressing is olive oil and a vinegar (balsamic, red wine, a mix, fresh oj), fresh herbs (oregano or basil), honey, S&P.

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We are moving and I am emptying my cupboards and cabinets and here is a sampling of what I found:

steel cut oat groats?  Why and what for?

Soy vinegar

Ginger vinegar

I also found some saffron - quite a bit -  I don't remember where I bought it or why but it nicely sealed.  What is the shelf life on this?

Any recs for using these products - of course not necessarily together.

Sprinkle either of the vinegars over warm rice or steamed vegetables

Make salad dressings with them (perhaps add a bit of sesame oil)

Add to mayonnaise and use in an asian-themed sandwich (banh mi?)

Make dipping sauces to serve with fresh vegetables or salad rolls

Oats are oats. Make oatmeal.

Unless there is a whoosh of aroma from your saffron toss it or use it to color rice or easter eggs! :biggrin:

Shelley: Would you like some pie?

Gordon: MASSIVE, MASSIVE QUANTITIES AND A GLASS OF WATER, SWEETHEART. MY SOCKS ARE ON FIRE.

Twin Peaks

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I don't even want to look in my cupboards to see what might be there, but I do know I also have a bag of saffron, brought to me from Egypt by friends who travelled there.  I also have no idea what to do with it.

Marlene, I have a hard time believing there could be ANYTHING in your cupboards that you don't know about and have labelled! I envy your pantry organization (I've said it before, and I'll keep saying it).

I have only lived in this house for two years, so there isn't anything truly old or odd lurking about. I do have a package of some type of dried vegetable which I bought because I thought it was a certain seaweed I wanted, but turns out to be a type of flower petal or some such. I have no idea what to do with it, but I can't bring myself to just throw it away either.

Does anyone know how long sauerkraut keeps? I'd think kind of indefinitely, but I got a Ziploc bagful from my CSA last October and it got shoved to the back of the fridge and forgotten. If it smells good, is it safe to assume it is good?

Jennie

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I have only lived in this house for two years, so there isn't anything truly old or odd lurking about.  I do have a package of some type of dried vegetable which I bought because I thought it was a certain seaweed I wanted, but turns out to be a type of flower petal or some such.  I have no idea what to do with it, but I can't bring myself to just throw it away either.

A few years ago when the renters moved out of my old house, they left behind a bunch of foodstuffs. I scored a wonderful huge bag of rice that we've worked our way through. There was also a small bag of teeny dried fish. Desiccated sardines? Petrified anchovies? The label was in a language I couldn't begin to read. I kept that bag for the longest time, trying to work out what to do with the little guys. I think I finally just got rid of it, since I had no resources like eGullet back then to steer me in the proper path.

Of course, when I go to move and finally clean out my pantry, I may still find them lurking back there... :rolleyes:

Does anyone know how long sauerkraut keeps?  I'd think kind of indefinitely, but I got a Ziploc bagful from my CSA last October and it got shoved to the back of the fridge and forgotten.  If it smells good, is it safe to assume it is good?

If the bag isn't puffed up of its own accord before you open it, and the sauerkraut looks and smells good after you open the bag, I'd say you're good to go. If there's a hint that this stuff is generating its own gases, I'd pitch it. (I had to do that the other day with some formerly fresh mozzarella. Boohoo!)

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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I keep saffron a long time and buy it by the oz ..just keeping it in an airtight can keeps it safe and fragrant ..it has never lost its aroma and I have had my current can for over a year now...

re finding wierd stuff you forgot about...

I found some dried lobster mushrooms in my pantry today and they smell ..well lobstery?

any suggestions I remember buying them ages ago and whatever I did with them I did not like so they got pushed to the back of the shelf ...now that they have resurfaced and seem to be ok ..I guess I should try to make something ..so if you have any ideas ...please share with me ..or they will get shoved back again!

why am I always at the bottom and why is everything so high? 

why must there be so little me and so much sky?

Piglet 

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Lindacakes - I adore Zingerman's! My partner is from A2 and grew up on Zingerman's and introduced me to them when we first started dating...and I still can't get enough.

Whoever said that man cannot live by bread alone...simply did not know me.
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How funny it seems to find eGullet subscribers not knowing anything to do with saffron! Here is my favorite (and incredibly easy) recipe for heavenly saffron flavor:

CHICKEN VELVET SOUP WITH SAFFRON

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/3 cup butter

1/2 cup flour

Quart of chicken broth (preferably homemade, but low-salt canned works fine)

One to two cups half-and-half

1/2 to one teaspoon saffron (I always use the whole package, which I think is one teaspoon)

Salt and pepper to taste

Heat broth to boiling, simmer chicken until not pink. Do not overcook, but do be sure there is no pink left. You can cook it more in the soup, but it will not have the same fluffy texture. Remove chicken from broth and let cool.

Make a roux of the butter, flour and half-and-half, over very low heat. Stir until smooth. Add slowly to chicken broth.

Put cooled chicken in a food processor and process until very fine. Add to blended broth and milk. Stir in saffron and salt and pepper. Serve with homemade croutons.

For additional body and food value, you can blend one or two raw eggs with about 1/2 to one cup of cooked rice, blend until fine and add at the end. I use more chicken broth if I am going to do this.

A friend once kept me alive on this when I was in the hospital and couldn't eat the hospital food. Since then it is what I always take people when they have been in the hospital.

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Yesterday, inspired by this thread, and reunited with a package of saffron that had lurked in the back of my cupboard for at least a couple years, I decided to make saffron bread.

Since I also have some preserved lemons I've been meaning to try, I Googled up a few recipes, and decided on this one.

Only trouble is, I was out of yeast! :angry:

SB (can't braid anyway) :rolleyes:

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I don't even want to look in my cupboards to see what might be there, but I do know I also have a bag of saffron, brought to me from Egypt by friends who travelled there.  I also have no idea what to do with it.

How about some paella?

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I keep my saffron in the freezer; I think it will retain its flavor longer that way.

My favorite way to use it is in a baked rice pilaf recipe in Madhur Jaffrey's World of the East Vegetarian Cooking.

You bloom the saffron in a bit of milk (or other liquid- coconut milk works great) first- that way, the color and flavor go further in the finished dish.

Then, you can add the saffron milk to any liquid used in soup, stew, rice, etc. for the beautiful color and somewhat weird flavor.

Now, what am I doing with 12 cans of green beans and two cans of treacle?! Waiting for a neighborhood canned-food drive, I guess...

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I second the votes for both risotto and paella. I just used some old (but still good!) saffron threads to beautifully color and scent some risotto with sundried tomatoes, prosciutto, and mahon cheese last week. A little goes a long way. (From Trader Joe's in a tiny corked glass bottle.)

David aka "DCP"

Amateur protein denaturer, Maillard reaction experimenter, & gourmand-at-large

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Well now I know what to do with my saffron :biggrin: We do put some in rice occassionally, and this stuff is actually still good, it was very well sealed, so I'll have to use it now I guess. :biggrin:

Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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