Posts Tagged ‘tips’

Handy holiday hint

November 22, 2008

I’ve been on a cream gravy kick lately and, with the gravy-making potential of Thanksgiving just days away, wanted to share this tip for smoother, faster gravy:  have your liquid as hot as possible, before you add it to the roux.  Whether it’s stock, or milk, or wine, or coffee, or some mixture, heat it up.  Adding hot liquid to hot roux helps keep things smooth and thickens things up quicker.  Adding cold milk or whatever to hot fat-n-flour is a recipe for lumps and longer stirring.


Rub your hands on the pan

March 11, 2008

Today’s tip:  Get rid of the smell of garlic or onions from your hands by rubbing them on wet stainless steel.  A pan, the sink, the faucet, the knife blade (carefully).  I don’t know why it works, but it does.  Some fancy kitchen place actually sells a block of stainless to keep at the sink; no need to spend $ on that, just fondle a utensil.

Dry before you fry

March 8, 2008

Tip for today: Whether it’s mushrooms you want to saute, cabbage you want to stir-fry, steak you want to sear, or potatoes you’re deep-frying, dry it as thoroughly as possible before you fry it. Reasons: Spattering will be reduced. When there’s moisture on the surface, it will boil into steam and insulate the surface of your food from the oil. (If your steaks and stew beef end up more gray than carmelized brown, this is probably why.)

It’s also a good idea to let the food come to room temperature if possible. Moisture condenses more readily on the surface of cold things, the lower differential temperature between the food and the oil means faster cooking, and since you are going to be cooking it at a high temperature, surface bacteria will be destroyed. A bad idea for any ground meat though, unless you are going to cook it very thoroughly.