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Old 12-08-2018, 04:03 PM
lingyi lingyi is offline
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Does anyone actually do everything cooking shows tell you to do?

Especially Alton Brown's instructions on Good Eats (which is on right now). I understand he's just being informational, but goodness man, I want to eat today, not tomorrow! This is especially true for things that need to rest or marinate overnight. I often don't know what I want to eat until that day or even an hour before I start cooking.

And between tasting and munching on what's being made, I sometimes don't really feel like eating it once it's done.

Last edited by lingyi; 12-08-2018 at 04:03 PM.
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Old 12-08-2018, 04:08 PM
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I especially ignore the instructions to repeatedly salt, salt, salt, and re-salt everything. And then arrange it nicely in a serving bowl and salt again.
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Old 12-08-2018, 05:45 PM
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I leave out the salt in most recipes, too.

I love that the cooks insist on using unsalted butter, then add salt anyway.
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Old 12-08-2018, 05:55 PM
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Originally Posted by lingyi View Post
Especially Alton Brown's instructions on Good Eats (which is on right now). I understand he's just being informational, but goodness man, I want to eat today, not tomorrow! This is especially true for things that need to rest or marinate overnight. I often don't know what I want to eat until that day or even an hour before I start cooking.

And between tasting and munching on what's being made, I sometimes don't really feel like eating it once it's done.
You dont watch Alton Brown so he can tell you what you can whip up in the next 20 minutes. Thats Rachael Ray.

Browns show is about giving you a deep understanding of materials and methods.
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Old 12-08-2018, 05:57 PM
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I don't even do what microwave ready meals tell me to do. Stop stir restart, fuck off.
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Old 12-08-2018, 06:06 PM
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I love that the cooks insist on using unsalted butter, then add salt anyway.
That's generally because they want to control how much salt there is, and they don't know how much is in your particular brand of salted butter.

What drive me crazy is that I once saw a cooking show that said to dissolve kosher salt into the broth, but then sprinkled regular-grain salt on top of the dish. If you're dissolving salt, you might as well use the cheap stuff, because it makes no difference. The only reason to use kosher salt in a broth is because you use it so often that you don't bother to keep the regular-grain stuff on hand, which they clearly did because they used it later.
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Old 12-08-2018, 07:01 PM
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Yep, pro chefs are all about their salt. My SIL is exec.Chef and he tastes and salts constantly while cooking. Rarely is it oversalted, though. Hes a great cook. I love his food. He pisses me off running everyone out of MY kitchen when they are here. He wants no help cooking. He will give us all prep duties and then shoos us out. I love hanging around watching someone cook.
I do try to do things tv cooks tell me. I feel like they know way more than me. I am not cooking lobster thermador or some fancy dessert. So there's that. You have to take their advice with a grain of salt ( heh!).

Last edited by Beckdawrek; 12-08-2018 at 07:02 PM.
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Old 12-08-2018, 07:16 PM
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Interesting that you mention Alton Brown, because if I had an idol, it would be him. He turned me into a competent cook. I know enough now, though, that I never follow anyone's recipe at all, because I know enough about most types of cooking to just do it instinctually.

I'll point out that baking is an exception. That's chemistry, and needs to be pretty accurate for good results.

I also don't have the instincts for Asian cooking, yet. I'm getting there, though.
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Old 12-08-2018, 07:19 PM
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I dont know if its still on, but I used to watch Rachel Rays 30 Minute Meals. Id think to myself, some things sounded really good, then Id look up the ingredient list. Usually, it would be as long as my arm and require quite a few items Id never use again.
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Old 12-08-2018, 07:36 PM
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To be clear, I like and appreciate Alton Brown. As I stated, I understand that he's being informational and educational, but some of his techniques, always measure your flour by weight not volume are a bit extreme. Will an extra teaspoon or two of flour really make difference in a recipe. Will letting something rest for 3 hours instead of at least 4, ruin the dish? Do I really need to put that much black or chili pepper in something when I don't really like black or chili pepper?
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Old 12-08-2018, 07:37 PM
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My answer to the OP is: Julia Child taught me how to make plain old-fashioned omelets.
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Old 12-08-2018, 07:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr Shine View Post
I don't even do what microwave ready meals tell me to do. Stop stir restart, fuck off.
Xkcd guy explains microwaves, including those overly complex directions (not in a cartoon):
Quote:
This starts to explain some of the weird instructions commonly seen on microwavable food.
When instructions say let stand for 1-2 minutes, it's not just to protect your mouth from hot foodit's giving the hot and cold spots time to equalize, so the whole thing will be sufficiently heated throughout. And if some part of the food doesn't conduct heat well (e.g. rice) or contains a lot of chunks of ice (e.g. frozen fruit or meat) they also might tell you to stir midway through cooking. This helps to transfer the heat more evenly into the food, move food away from cold spots, and also break up chunks of ice and mix them with warmer pockets of water to help melt them.
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Old 12-08-2018, 07:48 PM
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To be clear, I like and appreciate Alton Brown. As I stated, I understand that he's being informational and educational, but some of his techniques, always measure your flour by weight not volume are a bit extreme. Will an extra teaspoon or two of flour really make difference in a recipe. Will letting something rest for 3 hours instead of at least 4, ruin the dish? Do I really need to put that much black or chili pepper in something when I don't really like black or chili pepper?
I don’t recall his ever saying that you couldn’t deviate at all from his recipes or use ingredients you don’t like the taste of.

And when he’s making a precise recommendation, he says why.

Last edited by Acsenray; 12-08-2018 at 07:49 PM.
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Old 12-08-2018, 11:29 PM
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What drive me crazy is that I once saw a cooking show that said to dissolve kosher salt into the broth, but then sprinkled regular-grain salt on top of the dish. If you're dissolving salt, you might as well use the cheap stuff, because it makes no difference. The only reason to use kosher salt in a broth is because you use it so often that you don't bother to keep the regular-grain stuff on hand, which they clearly did because they used it later.
WAG: That might be because the kosher salt has no iodine, and therefore will not impart any off-flavors into the broth the way the regular iodized table salt could. Just a guess.
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Old 12-08-2018, 11:57 PM
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My answer to the OP is: Julia Child taught me how to make plain old-fashioned omelets.
I loved the time she was in rural France showing an elderly local how to make a light and fluffy omelet. The woman dismissed the method because the result would come apart in her husband's pocket while he worked in the fields. Her omelets were lots sturdier.

When I was a kid I watched Julia and Graham Kerr etc and learned some stuff. My daughter watches nearly nothing but cooking shows and knows nearly nothing. It's embarrassing.

Brown has some annoyingly complex recipes, or they would be if I paid any attention. I like the tech stuff, but I know how to cook and find his endless measuring tedious. Y'know, you take a lump of something, add "about yea's" of stuff, and heat until it seems done. Fast and easy.
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Old 12-09-2018, 12:18 AM
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MAybe I should watch more Alton Brown? People seem to like him. But I feel like the few bits I've seen give bad (or silly) advice. Like putting popcorn in the salt shaker instead of rice.
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Old 12-09-2018, 12:38 AM
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Originally Posted by lingyi View Post
Especially Alton Brown's instructions on Good Eats (which is on right now). I understand he's just being informational, but goodness man, I want to eat today, not tomorrow! This is especially true for things that need to rest or marinate overnight. I often don't know what I want to eat until that day or even an hour before I start cooking.

And between tasting and munching on what's being made, I sometimes don't really feel like eating it once it's done.
Cooking foods that take over 24 hours to prepare might be a problem from a planning perspective, but foods that take a few hours where a lot of the time is spent waiting actually isn't too bad once you come to accept it. You just get used to setting a timer and then going back to watching the TV or whatever else you're doing.
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Old 12-09-2018, 01:34 AM
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The waiting is the part I don't like. It's in the back of my mind all the time, like knowing the morning alarm is going to go off, but don't know when. I don't like doing laundry for the same reason, especially because I live in an apartment and use the community laundry. You don't want to forget it or else the next person can't use it. My ex and I made bread once. Never again. Too much waiting and effort for the final product.
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Old 12-09-2018, 07:39 AM
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The one time I followed Alton Brown's advice was when I used apple jelly to make an apple pie, because the pectin in it was supposed to help the filling (apple slices and raisins) firm up.

Uhm, no it didn't. I got some of the runniest liquid pie filling I've ever seen. I'd've been better off sticking to butter, brown sugar, and spices.

A few years ago, I tried some of Jamie Oliver's tips on making Christmas dinner. Braising chicken wings and then mashing them to add to the dressing was a terrible idea. Better I should have stuck to boiling and chopping the giblets---much less effort and almost no waste.
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Old 12-09-2018, 09:14 AM
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I go both ways. I don't watch cooking shows, but if I find a recipe I want to try, I'll follow it pretty close. At least the first time.

On the other hand, I like winging it too. I have eggs, flour, lemon, garlic, asparagus, and cherry tomatoes. Oh, and parmesan. Got to have parmesan.

Hmmm... I wonder if there is a lemon garlic spaghetti recipe? Sure enough, there are. So I'll read a few recipes to get some ideas. I put the recipes away and then just go for it. Yeah, those tomatoes and asparagus would work in there.
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Old 12-09-2018, 09:56 AM
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I especially ignore the instructions to repeatedly salt, salt, salt, and re-salt everything. And then arrange it nicely in a serving bowl and salt again.
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Originally Posted by RealityChuck View Post
I leave out the salt in most recipes, too.

I love that the cooks insist on using unsalted butter, then add salt anyway.
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Originally Posted by Chronos View Post
What drive me crazy is that I once saw a cooking show that said to dissolve kosher salt into the broth, but then sprinkled regular-grain salt on top of the dish. If you're dissolving salt, you might as well use the cheap stuff, because it makes no difference. The only reason to use kosher salt in a broth is because you use it so often that you don't bother to keep the regular-grain stuff on hand, which they clearly did because they used it later.
You salt during cooking because layering in the salt ends up with better-tasting food and less salt used overall. Salting at the end of cooking simply doesn't end up with the same depth as when you salt all the way through the cooking process. Salt allows flavors to penetrate into meat and vegetables in a way that won't happen without it.

As far as using kosher versus regular, I use kosher 99% of the time because the bigger grains make it easier to measure. I keep a little dish of it by the stove and grab 2-finger or 3-finger pinches to easily add to food as I cook. It's a lot harder to judge if you're using a shaker, and I don't want to have to pull out a measuring spoon all the time. And if you're Kosher Salt is expensive, you're buying the wrong stuff. Looking at the WalMart website, 26 oz of Morton table salt is $1.48; 3 pounds (48 oz) of Morton Kosher is $2.44. It's cheaper.

As far as the OP - I don't really cook from cooking shows, so no real opinion there. I watch 'em sometimes, but when it comes to actually cooking I either wing it or pull out a recipe.
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Old 12-09-2018, 10:03 AM
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I guess I'm in the minority. I enjoy spending time in the kitchen, leisurely putting a meal together.

Mondays are often one of my days to cook. It's not unusual for me to be working on Monday dinner on Saturday or Sunday, say making rice for eventual use in fried rice. I then cut out of work early on Monday to get ready for a meal I'll serve at 8.
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Old 12-09-2018, 10:12 AM
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To be clear, I like and appreciate Alton Brown. As I stated, I understand that he's being informational and educational, but some of his techniques, always measure your flour by weight not volume are a bit extreme. Will an extra teaspoon or two of flour really make difference in a recipe. Will letting something rest for 3 hours instead of at least 4, ruin the dish? Do I really need to put that much black or chili pepper in something when I don't really like black or chili pepper?
Seven billion bakers can't be wrong. Volume can vary wildly. Weighing the flour gives the exact same results every time. Dipping a measuring cup into a bag of flour compacts it into the cup, which can make the measurement off by way more than a a tsp or two, which then changes the amount of liquid added. Multiply the error times four cups for a loaf, and you're changing the texture of the bread. I keep a scale in the kitchen just for this purpose. Also, different flour brands have different weights, so it helps to be consistent with the brand. I use King Arthur, which is 120g/cup.
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Old 12-09-2018, 10:13 AM
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Whenever I first try a new recipe, whether I got it from Tasty, or Pinterest, or a cooking show, or whatever, the first time I follow the instructions to. the. letter. I am NOT skilled enough in the kitchen to wing it. So if Celebrity Chef tells me to light an incense and invoke the Harvest Goddess before I add my potatoes, then I shall.

Once I've got it down, then I'll experiment if/when I make it again.
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Old 12-09-2018, 10:35 AM
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To be clear, I like and appreciate Alton Brown. As I stated, I understand that he's being informational and educational, but some of his techniques, always measure your flour by weight not volume are a bit extreme. Will an extra teaspoon or two of flour really make difference in a recipe. Will letting something rest for 3 hours instead of at least 4, ruin the dish? Do I really need to put that much black or chili pepper in something when I don't really like black or chili pepper?
For flour, it depends on the recipe. For all baking recipes, I use a scale, as I have for over twenty years. It's much easier and more consistent. I know, for example, for my bread and pizza crust I want a 70% hyrdation dough. I could put any arbitrary amount in the mixing bowl, weight it, multiply by .7 (I weigh in grams) and add that much water, plus salt (that I usually eyeball at around a teaspoon per cup of water, or 2% by weight if I really feel like weighing it out--but that requires the smaller scale for its precision.)

But no, an extra teaspoon or two won't ruin the bread, but you might be off by more than just a teaspoon or two using volume measures. Still, it's just faster and easier for me to just weigh & go.

For the most part, I do follow instructions when making a recipe for the first time, unless I'm putting together a hybrid recipe using ideas from several recipes.

And yes to salt, salt, salt. I'm checking and adjusting at various stages in cooking (always keeping in mind that the longer the cook, the more the salt is concentrated by the end, so to be careful not to oversalt in the beginning.) My mother-in-law was raving about my goulash soup and wondering how I made such a nice broth. There was no secret to it. It was just water and beef shank stewed with onion, to which later a few root vegetables were added. Dead simple. Except she always undersalts the heck out of her soups and stews, so when served one that was salted to my liking, it was like a flavor explosion to her. Now, yes, I get not everybody has the same tolerance to salt, but I seem to have a very middle-of-the-road sensitivity to salt that works well with other diners. My wife, though, will still add extra salt to her dishes. But there does need to be a base level for the flavors to come through (except for those people who have weaned salt almost completely out of their diet.) Most people I know, when they complain about their food being bland, simply didn't salt it enough. That's it. (Or, yes, sometimes a splash of acidity is also helpful.)

Last edited by pulykamell; 12-09-2018 at 10:37 AM.
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Old 12-09-2018, 11:23 AM
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Most people I know, when they complain about their food being bland, simply didn't salt it enough. That's it. (Or, yes, sometimes a splash of acidity is also helpful.)
Totally agree, but want to emphasize acid more since more folks don't seem to realize that it's as important as salt. Have a bland dish? 90% of the time you can fix it by adding salt and/or acid (lemon or lime juice, vinegar, wine, etc). Not sure how to do it? Take a spoonful of the food, sprinkle a little salt on it. Taste. Is it better? Add more salt to the dish. Is it not better? Do the same thing with a little acid. Voila, dish has flavor.

re: weighing over measuring. IMO the only reason people think weighing is more fussy is because they haven't tried it or aren't used to it. Once you get used to working with a kitchen scale you'll start cursing recipes that don't have weight measurements. It's faster, easier, and you end up with a ton fewer dishes since you're not having to pull out measuring cups & bowls for everything. One bowl on the scale, add the correct weight for ingredient #1. Reset weight to zero, add ingredient #2. Rinse and repeat. One dirty bowl, no guessing about ingredients that are hard to measure (1 cup of diced carrots can be very different depending on how small of a dice you're talking), and in general, things just go faster.
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Old 12-09-2018, 12:46 PM
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Totally agree, but want to emphasize acid more since more folks don't seem to realize that it's as important as salt.
Yes!

I just gave my gf the book Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat. Very interesting read.
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Old 12-09-2018, 05:43 PM
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Alton Brown has done some rebooting of his original shows. They're pretty good. Hes changed a few things. I love Alton.
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Old 12-10-2018, 01:09 AM
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Alton Brown has done some rebooting of his original shows. They're pretty good. Hes changed a few things. I love Alton.
Has he corrected his egregious mispronunciations? Plantain, arthropod, oligosaccharide, and astaxanthin come to mind. It always amused me to hear him butcher certain terms. Since he's from Georgia, I'm surprised he got salmon right!

I enjoyed Good Eats, and other shows, but no way do I put every little ingredient into its own tiny glass bowl!
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Old 12-10-2018, 03:58 AM
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To be clear, I like and appreciate Alton Brown. As I stated, I understand that he's being informational and educational, but some of his techniques, always measure your flour by weight not volume are a bit extreme. Will an extra teaspoon or two of flour really make difference in a recipe. Will letting something rest for 3 hours instead of at least 4, ruin the dish? Do I really need to put that much black or chili pepper in something when I don't really like black or chili pepper?
I'm a chemist; the ultimate reference of any measurement I ever took in a lab was always a weight. The only times I measure by volume is when I have a recipe in which everything is by volume. The scale sits on my countertop; the measuring glass lives in a high shelf with the flan molds, flan being one of the few things I use it for.
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Old 12-10-2018, 04:37 AM
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My partner's favorite meal is fettucine carbonara, and I could never get it right. It was always an eggy mess. Marco Pierre White had a segment on Masterchef where he demonstrated how to make it. I started following his method and now my results are much better. It's not a complicated dish, though. Australian chef Matt Moran gave risotto tips on Masterchef that improved my risotto tremendously as well.

I've heard so much about Alton Brown, but he's not on TV here.
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Old 12-10-2018, 05:02 AM
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The point of following a recipe to the letter isn't so you get something passable, it's so you get something as close as possible to the same taste as the example you're following. If you want to settle for "near enough", that's fine too.
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Old 12-10-2018, 06:06 AM
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I scarcely watch TV; but in the matter of recipes written-down / in print / on the Net -- my brother and I are at opposite poles on the "follow meticulously" / "wing it" continuum. We share a house, and approximately, cook alternately -- we both enjoy cooking, with him rather more of an impassioned and knowledgeable "foodie" than me.

He is very much of the "wing it" school, and (affectionately) twits me on being a hide-bound, ridiculously slavish recipe-follower down to the smallest particulars. For me, that's the way I like doing it -- I figure that there is room for both approaches, and "pros and cons" to each.
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Old 12-10-2018, 07:02 AM
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Totally agree, but want to emphasize acid more since more folks don't seem to realize that it's as important as salt. Have a bland dish? 90% of the time you can fix it by adding salt and/or acid (lemon or lime juice, vinegar, wine, etc). Not sure how to do it? Take a spoonful of the food, sprinkle a little salt on it. Taste. Is it better? Add more salt to the dish. Is it not better? Do the same thing with a little acid. Voila, dish has flavor.
Lots of people don't realize that up to a certain point, adding salt to something doesn't make it taste salty, but rather makes it taste more like itself. Salt is first and foremost a flavor enhancer.
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Old 12-10-2018, 10:59 AM
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Lots of people don't realize that up to a certain point, adding salt to something doesn't make it taste salty, but rather makes it taste more like itself. Salt is first and foremost a flavor enhancer.
Yep, I hear that a lot.

Another thing I hear - "eewww I don't want THAT much salt in my diet!" Unless you are on a totally-no-salt-diet (and I realize some folks are), you're going to put some salt on stuff. If you salt while you cook, you will end up with less salt in the food overall, because (as Alessan says) it's a flavor enhancer. Anyone who wants to try this for yourself, make some scrambled eggs with and without salt, and measure how much salt you have to add to the unsalted eggs as you eat them; it's 1) almost impossible to make them taste good and 2) you end up using a whole hella lotta salt (and they still don't taste good.)

Fat, too, acts to spread flavor throughout the dish, and adds a certain depth that you can't get in fat-free foods.
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Old 12-10-2018, 12:38 PM
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Lots of people don't realize that up to a certain point, adding salt to something doesn't make it taste salty, but rather makes it taste more like itself. Salt is first and foremost a flavor enhancer.
Your tongue can detect five tastes. Salt is one of them, so adding salt (or sugar, acid, bitterness, or umame) can enhance the perception of flavor. Other things we think of as flavor are experienced through the olfactory, not direct contact with the food.
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Old 12-10-2018, 12:47 PM
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Regarding measuring vs. weighing flour:

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J. Kenji Lopez-Alt, the managing editor of the blog Serious Eats, once asked 10 people to measure a cup of all-purpose flour into a bowl. When the cooks were done, Mr. Lopez-Alt weighed each bowl. “Depending on how strong you are or your scooping method, I found that a ‘cup of flour’ could be anywhere from 4 to 6 ounces,” he said. That’s a significant difference: one cook might be making a cake with one-and-a-half times as much flour as another.
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Old 12-10-2018, 01:20 PM
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You don’t watch Alton Brown so he can tell you what you can whip up in the next 20 minutes. That’s Rachael Ray.

Brown’s show is about giving you a deep understanding of materials and methods.
I remember a show where Rachael Ray was making some kind of Caribbean jerk chicken. And she said, 'I'm going to use SOME OF THE FLAVORS to make this dish'. That comment stayed with me, I then felt even if I lacked some of the ingredients (allspice berries or juniper berries), as long as I had the mains (scallions, thyme, cinnamon, hot sauce or peppers), it would come out ok. I've always been the type to realize I lacked an item and dropped everything and ran out to buy fennel or two habanero peppers. As I'm not cooking for goor-mays here, close is good 'nuff. (even easier: buying a bottle of jerk sauce or marinade).

Last edited by salinqmind; 12-10-2018 at 01:23 PM.
  #39  
Old 12-10-2018, 02:38 PM
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Regarding measuring vs. weighing flour:
I think people get too excited about this.

I have a scale and a lot of volume measuring implements. The only food where I find it significantly better to use the scale is flour. (And even there, I can get consistency by "fluffing" my flour before measuring it.) The only food where it's a lot more accurate to use volume is brown sugar (the amount of water can vary quite a lot, affecting the weight much more than the volume or the sweetness.) Pretty much everything else, whichever seems easier is likely better.

If I already have the scale set up to weigh the flour, I'll weigh the white sugar, too. And it's nice to weigh out the molasses or honey or vegetable shortening, and not dirty a dish. I have a strong preference for measuring spoons for small quantities -- you need to measure those separately so you can adjust if you go over, so you are already dirtying a dish, why not just measure in that dish. Besides, my scale isn't all that accurate for tiny amounts. Butter and eggs come with their own measurements (number of eggs, or the tablespoon/oz marks on the side of the stick of butter)
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Old 12-10-2018, 03:11 PM
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Of course, eggs vary considerably, even more so than volumes of flour, so if it ever actually really matters (hint: It often doesn't), you probably want to measure those, too. The easiest way to get it right is to get the approximately-right number of eggs, measure those, and then scale everything else to match.
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Old 12-10-2018, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by salinqmind View Post
I remember a show where Rachael Ray was making some kind of Caribbean jerk chicken. And she said, 'I'm going to use SOME OF THE FLAVORS to make this dish'. That comment stayed with me, I then felt even if I lacked some of the ingredients (allspice berries or juniper berries), as long as I had the mains (scallions, thyme, cinnamon, hot sauce or peppers), it would come out ok. I've always been the type to realize I lacked an item and dropped everything and ran out to buy fennel or two habanero peppers. As I'm not cooking for goor-mays here, close is good 'nuff. (even easier: buying a bottle of jerk sauce or marinade).
But allspice is pretty much one of the defining flavors of jerk. I would say the defining flavor. After that, you have habanero/scotch bonnets/hot peppers, and then thyme, but if I order "jerk" I expect allspice as the main identifiable flavor in it.
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Old 12-10-2018, 04:31 PM
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As I stated, I understand that he's being informational and educational, but some of his techniques, always measure your flour by weight not volume are a bit extreme.
Weighing ingredients isn't extreme. Just put a single bowl on the scale and dump multiple ingredients in until the number on the scale says what you want. Dirtying up twelve different types of measuring spoons and cups, for both liquid and dry ingredients, and then leveling them off, and packing them down, and yadda and yadda... that's extreme.
  #43  
Old 12-10-2018, 09:05 PM
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Of course, eggs vary considerably, even more so than volumes of flour, so if it ever actually really matters (hint: It often doesn't), you probably want to measure those, too. The easiest way to get it right is to get the approximately-right number of eggs, measure those, and then scale everything else to match.
The ratio of yolk to white varies some, but eggs are sorted by size before they are sold. A large egg (in the US) is between 2 and 2.25 ounces. That's not a huge range.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicken_egg_sizes

I see the potential variance in egg sizes (within a size category) is larger in the EU, maybe 19% for a "large" egg rather than a maximum range of about 12% in the US and Canada.
  #44  
Old 12-10-2018, 09:27 PM
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I get a kick out of reading the online reviews that give a published recipe a low rating and claim it didn't work - then explain how they didn't follow it at all, substituting ingredients, messing with technique/timing/equipment, etc.
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Old 12-10-2018, 09:59 PM
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I get a kick out of reading the online reviews that give a published recipe a low rating and claim it didn't work - then explain how they didn't follow it at all, substituting ingredients, messing with technique/timing/equipment, etc.
Drives me up a wall, that.
  #46  
Old 12-10-2018, 10:15 PM
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Regarding measuring vs. weighing flour:
He's the man.
  #47  
Old 12-11-2018, 06:38 AM
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The ratio of yolk to white varies some, but eggs are sorted by size before they are sold. A large egg (in the US) is between 2 and 2.25 ounces. That's not a huge range.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicken_egg_sizes

I see the potential variance in egg sizes (within a size category) is larger in the EU, maybe 19% for a "large" egg rather than a maximum range of about 12% in the US and Canada.
Eggs from our small flock of hens vary from medium to jumbo. I use the large eggs for cooking and the outliers for our dogs.
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Old 12-11-2018, 08:42 AM
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Weighing ingredients means you can cook a whole lot faster without measuring anything. If I dump 250g of flour into my bowl, then I need .75 of that in water, about half a gram per 100 for yeast, and a gram and a half of salt per hundred, and I've got a great Detroit style pizza dough.
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Old 12-11-2018, 08:57 AM
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Eggs from our small flock of hens vary from medium to jumbo. I use the large eggs for cooking and the outliers for our dogs.
Sure. I don't have access to hens, I need to buy eggs at the market. Essentially all US recipes are based on US "large" eggs. I buy "large eggs" unless something else is significantly cheaper, and then I just use the published standards to adjust how many eggs I will be using. (e.g., 5 jumbo ~ 6 large) I'll pay a small surcharge to buy "large" eggs and not need to make that adjustment. I don't ever actually weigh (or volume measure) eggs. I go by what the box says. I am a successful baker, and this seems to work well enough for pretty much everything I've tried.
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Old 12-11-2018, 12:20 PM
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But allspice is pretty much one of the defining flavors of jerk. I would say the defining flavor. After that, you have habanero/scotch bonnets/hot peppers, and then thyme, but if I order "jerk" I expect allspice as the main identifiable flavor in it.
I had no allspice powder or berries, but I looked up 'allspice substitute' - pinch of cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg - and used cloves and cinnamon (didn't have nutmeg). It came out fine, no one complained.
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