Tips and Notables That Make it Fun and A Bit Easier….Cooking That is

Jul 24


DID YOU KNOW THAT?  * Making Fondue and the cheese gets stringy and won’t melt…add a few drops of lemon juice and stir-it will smooth out and be creamy . *Cooking a pot of beans…pintos, black , or ? When the liquid get low, make sure you had hot or boiling H2O..otherwise the pot has to get back up to temp. *Who puts hot food on a cold plate? Lots of people…warm them in the microwave, set 1 or 2 on a pizza pan over an elec. burner set very low or just run under the hot water for a bit and dry them. It works.*Keep frozen peas ( petite pois are my favorite ones ) to use in your pasta and salad dishes ; just run under hot water for a minute and drain . *Dried egg yolks on your breakfast plates? Sprinkle with table salt and let sit a bit. It will wash away easily with the wash water or in the dishwasher.* Buy big fat asparagus…they are better. The skinny ones have no better flavor, get too limp when grilled or blanched. Only good when raw and sliced in salads…. in my opinion. (Julia Child felt the same)* Making waffles ! My mom would lay a slice or two of thin bacon on top of the batter . Boy was that good when the maple syrup hit that juicy, crispy bacon surrounded by lovely “waffle valleys”. *Do not use extra virgin olive oil to saute or heat it in any way- except to drizzle on a dish! It is from the first pressing of the olives and the flavors rely on no use of heat in processing. Heat is applied to the 3 RD and 4 Th (usually) pressing of that batch of olive pulp. One is destroying the essence of it’s unique quality. Use a good olive oil -not extra virgin instead. (ask Bobby Flay) Pancakes for breakfast only? Not always . Take your favorite batter and vary the recipe…add some corn cut from the cob and some sliced scallions for a light meal or appetizer ; or add some shredded red onion and raw carrots. When they brown up they are aromatic, golden and delicious. You can top either with a fruit spiced chutney or herb butter. Very nice. Use your imagination. *Baked potatoes need not be limited because of butter, sour cream and bacon. Have them often. Just split open after baking, sprinkle with sea salt, fresh ground pepper, juice of one quarter to one half lemon and a sprinkle of freshly grated Parmesan cheese. Light, and really delicious. Low in calories . *Safety tip in the kitchen. Do like the old time chefs did in their kitchens. Keep a container (a one half gallon crock works well) in your area filled with ordinary table salt . If a dangerous fire develops on the stove or in a pan , a quick dump of salt will take away the oxygen and the fire is out. Clean up is not too bad afterwards. *Peeling fresh garlic. This from SAVEUR Magazine-put several separate cloves in a stainless steel bowl, invert second bowl over the first; grasp both tightly and shake hard for 10 seconds; most skin will have come off…any left is easy removal.         Let me know some of your favorite tips.

QUICK and HEALTHY BACHELOR SNACK…. Steam four fresh corn tortillas in a clean towel in the microwave. Fill each with 2 kinds of your favorite shredded cheeses (like Sharp Cheddar and Monterey Jack – or Blue and Swiss ) -each tortilla and fold in half. Lay in baking dish overlapping each, about one third. Dice one half avocado over the top ; spoon 1/4 cup or more of your favorite salsa ; add some pickled jalapenos and a thin layer of the cheeses. Cover with plastic wrap and heat in microwave for 2 minutes or so. Top with fresh chopped cilantro and chopped green onion if desired. Drink a beer too; maybe one while making the dish and one with it also.



COMING SOON: Messy Fingers… etc. Vol.2D ; an introduction to the six gals that help me here ; More Dirt Road Ramblings, and Features on “The Hamburger-King of American Food” and “Summertime Fruit Butters and Spreads”.


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