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Thread: The Cooking Thread

  1. #3571
    Member insbordnat's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Couple of things off the top of my head:

    Check your firmness. For curries you could probably go firm/extra firm so that it holds together.

    Season the shit out of it. Tofu needs a lot of seasoning. I would have salted (even marinated) the tofu and then done a cook to give color, and then add to sauce. Your sauce alone won't impart enough flavor/salt to let the flavors shine. I don't know if the first cook with curry powder was done with salt, but that could have been a factor that would have hampered the curry flavors from coming out.
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  2. #3572

    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Any other Japanese knife brand suggestions other than Miyabi or Takayuki?
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  3. #3573
    Member insbordnat's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Not from me unfortunately. I've seen a lot of brands at my local knife shop but can't really remember names.
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  4. #3574
    The Encyclopedia bmack86's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    I have armfuls of fresh tomatoes coming in from the garden right now, specifically a decent amount of tasty little romas. Anyone have a tomato sauce and/or pizza sauce recipe they enjoy that I could use some of these in?
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  5. #3575
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    If they are really good and you want to preserve the flavor, I'd personally make a conserva. But you're gonna need a shitload, like >10 lbs or so. Not sure what your garden is yielding.

    Otherwise, if smaller quantity, I wouldn't cook them, I'd make a checca and toss with pasta. Scoop out seeds and gel and dice the rest. Toss with good olive oil, fine garlic, fresh basil, salt, pepper. Make your favorite pasta, and toss with checca.

    For me, the better my tomatoes, the less cooked/adulterated my sauce becomes.
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  6. #3576
    The Encyclopedia bmack86's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Do you need paste tomatoes for the conserva? I only have one roma bush, but it just yielded about 2-3 pounds of fruit. The rest of the bushes (7-8) are more juicy heirloom varietals, and I could easily pull 20-30 pounds.
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  7. #3577
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Yeah, I wouldn't use the heirlooms, only the romas or other similar varietals.
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  8. #3578

    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    did design-your-own Dia de los Muertos, although that theme was vastly open, cookie design the other night. They sell it at World Market and it's a fun group thing even if there obviously featured only one grand artiste. But would really like to know the best, most delicious way to make a quick batch of saurkraut.

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  9. #3579
    Member insbordnat's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    I suppose you could make a brine and do somewhat of a fresh sauerkraut, but typically it should ferment for over a week. Not sure what you had in mind re: "quick".
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  10. #3580
    Coachella Junkie stinkbutt's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    I've been making tons of krauts, pickles, and other ferments. Really fun stuff. Also been making pates a lot, which I highly recommend. Fairly easy, really cheap, and ridiculously delicious. Does anyone know how to make them get that mousse like texture? I can't seem to get them really light like some of the better ones I've had.
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  11. #3581
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Stink - a lot of things can go wrong so it's difficult to know what's preventing you from getting the texture you want, but here's a few tips I picked up along the way when making forcemeats:

    1) Everything isn't cold enough. Almost all of your equipment, i.e. grinder, blades, bowls, etc. should be frozen or over ice when used. Think of trying to keep everything at 40 degrees at all times. When I make sausages/forcemeats/etc. my grinder parts (feeder, auger, dies, cutting knife) are all in the freezer for an hour before I start grinding. After grinding (and if I have to do a second grind) it'll go back into the freezer. When mixing the meat with seasonings, do so over a bowl that's in ice.

    2) Food processors are ok if you don't have a suitable grinder, but you run the risk of over processing in order to get the fine consistency. At the very least, work in small batches, and keep putting that blade in the freezer. The bowl won't really matter if frozen.

    3) make sure your meat and fat prior to grinding are also super cold, even semi frozen. The biggest risk you have here is that the combination of fat and meat, i.e. the emulsion, can break, leaving you with a bad consistency.

    4) you may not be using enough fat, or the quality/type of your fat may be not ideal. Jowl or leaf fat (or other types of organ fat) is preferred, but if you can't get that I suppose quality back fat is ok if you have to. Never used commercially prepared lard. Make sure the fat you're using is white as possible, firm, and can break apart easily if possible. Note that back fat doesn't have these characteristics and is more difficult to cut/work with.

    5) Not sure if you're using a binding agent, such as dry milk or a panada etc. but those can help achieve a smoother, finer, more bound mass, as can cream - that will add to the richness/fullness. Just remember that the emulsion you're making is delicate, it is susceptible to over mixing/heat so don't worry about babying it too much and then once you get the hang of it you can dial back your amount of caution.

    In a perfect situation, you'd rely on a good grinder to get your meat ground twice while still cold (almost the consistency of slightly frozen peas) , and then a food processor for a final smoothing. An all-food processor method in my mind is a difficult way to go about it.
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  12. #3582
    ankle biter guedita's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    So MissBellaHell hooked me up with a free week of Blue Apron and I've continued to order meals from them mostly because I feel like I've learned a lot by being sort of forced into having to use ingredients/cook things that I've never done before. I feel like it's given me a lot of confidence -- I used to always look at recipes and pass because some thing or another seemed too daunting to attempt. I definitely keep fucking up on minor parts of recipes, and when I read through the comments on their FB page a lot of people seem to have similar issues and it seems as though it is in part because of poorly written directions on their behalf (and a lack of knowledge/experience with these ingredients on mine).

    So with that being said, I got some frozen chicken thighs. Anyone have a favorite recipe for that? I'll totally try it.

    Also, thanks for the earlier discussion of knives in this thread. I'm going to get a couple for xmas based on these recommendations.

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  13. #3583

    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Made lamb tagine the other day, and hot damn it was delicious.

    http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/fo...pricots-367761
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  14. #3584
    old school cansei de ser sexme's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    I've been using my parents big green egg a lot, it's a great for so many applications. But the biggest hit with the family has been smoked trout. Such a cheap fish and the depth of flavor from smoking likens it to a delicious jerky.

    Any smoking wiz's out there? Been looking for a great rib recipe.

  15. #3585
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by guedita View Post
    So with that being said, I got some frozen chicken thighs. Anyone have a favorite recipe for that?
    these are some of my favorites
    http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1...-with-shallots
    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/23/di...jerusalem.html
    http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/e...-fried-chicken (time consuming, but worth it)

  16. #3586

    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by cansei de ser sexme View Post
    I've been using my parents big green egg a lot, it's a great for so many applications. But the biggest hit with the family has been smoked trout. Such a cheap fish and the depth of flavor from smoking likens it to a delicious jerky.

    Any smoking wiz's out there? Been looking for a great rib recipe.
    http://www.amazingribs.com
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  17. #3587
    Coachella Junkie locachica73's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by guedita View Post
    So MissBellaHell hooked me up with a free week of Blue Apron and I've continued to order meals from them mostly because I feel like I've learned a lot by being sort of forced into having to use ingredients/cook things that I've never done before. I feel like it's given me a lot of confidence -- I used to always look at recipes and pass because some thing or another seemed too daunting to attempt. I definitely keep fucking up on minor parts of recipes, and when I read through the comments on their FB page a lot of people seem to have similar issues and it seems as though it is in part because of poorly written directions on their behalf (and a lack of knowledge/experience with these ingredients on mine).

    So with that being said, I got some frozen chicken thighs. Anyone have a favorite recipe for that? I'll totally try it.

    Also, thanks for the earlier discussion of knives in this thread. I'm going to get a couple for xmas based on these recommendations.
    I don't cook a lot of thighs, I prefer white meat chicken. I do use them when making chicken cacciatore. I hate this woman's show, listening to her speak makes me angry for some reason, but her written recipes seem to be written very clearly, still annoying but I can skip all the extra words. This is my favorite: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2...en-cacciatore/

    I also use thighs for chicken mole, but I don't make mole sauce from scratch, there are way too many ingredients. I buy the dona maria brand at the grocery store, and I mix in a bit of peanut butter to add some sweetness. You just mix one jar of the mole paste with the broth after you boil the chicken thighs. Then you shred the meat and mix it in with the sauce and serve over white rice.
    Last edited by locachica73; 11-10-2014 at 08:18 AM.
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  18. #3588
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by cansei de ser sexme View Post
    I've been using my parents big green egg a lot, it's a great for so many applications. But the biggest hit with the family has been smoked trout. Such a cheap fish and the depth of flavor from smoking likens it to a delicious jerky.

    Any smoking wiz's out there? Been looking for a great rib recipe.
    What kind of ribs do you like? Dry rubbed or marinated? Are you in the "meat falling off the bone" camp or do you like a slight tug off the bone? Do you like spares or baby backs? I can give you some direction.
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  19. #3589
    Coachella Junkie jackstraw94086's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by locachica73 View Post
    I don't cook a lot of thighs, I prefer white meat chicken. I do use them when making chicken cacciatore. I hate this woman's show, listening to her speak makes me angry for some reason, but her written recipes seem to be written very clearly, still annoying but I can skip all the extra words. This is my favorite: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2...en-cacciatore/

    I also use thighs for chicken mole, but I don't make mole sauce from scratch, there are way too many ingredients. I buy the dona maria brand at the grocery store, and I mix in a bit of peanut butter to add some sweetness. You just mix one jar of the mole paste with the broth after you boil the chicken thighs. Then you shred the meat and mix it in with the sauce and serve over white rice.
    I also generally prefer white meat, and only use thighs for things like curries and or braising in whatever. I can accept that some folks genuinely prefer dark meat, but I hate when chefs go out of their way to turn up their nose at the idea of cooking chicken breasts. Feels very trendy with all these petulant shits on Food Network shows huffing and complaining how boring chicken breasts are. Oh wouldn't a chef's life be so grand if it weren't for all the annoying unsophisticated palettes they have to cook for.
    Last edited by jackstraw94086; 11-10-2014 at 04:27 PM.

  20. #3590

    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by cansei de ser sexme View Post
    I've been using my parents big green egg a lot, it's a great for so many applications. But the biggest hit with the family has been smoked trout. Such a cheap fish and the depth of flavor from smoking likens it to a delicious jerky.

    Any smoking wiz's out there? Been looking for a great rib recipe.
    For baby backs I do:

    -Dry rub with brown sugar, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper, salt, pepper (I never measure)
    -2 hours at 225-250-
    -2 hours wrapped in foil at 225-250 (use foil to envelope the racks, pour a little beer or apple juice in it to help steam)
    -Unwrap the ribs and baste with sauce and cook uncovered until preferred done-ness (usually another hour at 225-250).

    For sauce, I make a bourbon based bbq sauce that works really well.

  21. #3591
    ankle biter guedita's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by bleep View Post
    What kind of white wine do you use for this? I just made it and used some Chardonnay I had open in the fridge - I know I should be using a dry wine but I went for it anyway cus I forgot to pick one up at the store. The end result was way too sweet for my liking. I've also got to get better at actually frying/browning chicken before letting it simmer in a sauce.

    Loca, I'm going to try that chicken cacciatore later in the week thanks!
    Last edited by guedita; 11-10-2014 at 07:43 PM.

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  22. #3592
    Coachella Junkie jackstraw94086's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    crisp dry whites like some Sauvignon Blancs or Pinot Grigios generally are best for cooking IMO.

  23. #3593
    Coachella Junkie locachica73's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    That's good to know. I have the same trouble cooking with wine. There is a garlic shrimp scampi I have been wanting to try that calls for wine. I might try that this week. Thanks!
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  24. #3594
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by guedita View Post
    What kind of white wine do you use for this?
    pinot grigio, my standby white for cooking.

  25. #3595
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    i'd like some tips and/or recipes for making mashed potatoes. i don't care if they have chunks, but i do like them somewhat creamy. thank you
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  26. #3596
    Coachella Junkie locachica73's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    I start with 3-5lbs of baby reds (depending on how many leftovers I plan to eat) I peel half and just scrub the rest, boil in heavily salted water, and a spoon full of the canned roasted garlic they sell in the produce section at the grocery store. Once the potatoes can be stabbed easily with a fork I drain and put in 1/2 - to a whole stick of real butter, a little more garlic, salt, lots of pepper and enough milk and/or cream to get to the correct consistency.
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  27. #3597
    Member insbordnat's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    ^that's pretty much it, you'll have some telling you Yukon golds are better, I personally use russets without any problems. I'll peel all though. I'm also in favor of a ricer or food mill to make sure all chunks are gone.
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  28. #3598
    Coachella Junkie jackstraw94086's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    I swear by Russets. I go cheese instead of garlic. Parmesan and gouda.
    When I do go garlic I add a boatload of chives.

  29. #3599
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    I usually add onion and chive cream cheese into my mashed potatoes.

  30. #3600
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    Default Re: The Cooking Thread

    thanks, everyone! i found that i preferred the yukon gold for gnocchi, but that is probably a different consistency. maybe i will try both! also, i now have a ricer.
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