From the humblest pea to the immensest squash.

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24
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2answers
616 views

Which vegetables to use for stock?

Which vegetables and/or fresh herbs should be used when making vegetable stock? Are there any vegetables/herbs that should be avoided? Can parts of vegetables that would otherwise be discarded be ...
20
votes
2answers
5k views

Is it possible to preserve color in steamed vegetables?

When I steam green vegetables, like broccoli, they come out bright green. A few minutes later though, and they have darkened and dulled. Is this a symptom of cooking them for too long or is there some ...
20
votes
4answers
5k views

What are the differences between different types of onions, and when do you use them?

I used a recipe for a mean black-eyed-pea salad this past weekend which called for a red onion. Since I wanted extra onion flavor in the salad anyway, I decided to pick up a Vidalia onion to throw in ...
19
votes
2answers
12k views

Food safety of meat vs. veggies and fruit with mold on them

Obviously, it's bad to eat moldy food, so I don't do so. However, the other day I was presented with both an old pot roast and asparagus in the fridge, both of which had grown mold. Of course, I ...
18
votes
1answer
19k views

What does the refrigerator crisper compartment actually do?

In most refrigerators you will be able to find a compartment for your vegetables and fruits. This compartment is called the crisper and it is supposedly able to keep your vegetables and fruits fresh ...
17
votes
4answers
2k views

How to wash vegetables without running water?

I live in a subtropical climate where most people cook vegetables, rather than eat them raw, so when making green salads, I must be careful to ensure that everything is clean. I have seen ...
16
votes
9answers
2k views

What to do with broccoli stalk?

It is kind of annoying to buy broccoli and pay per weight when there's this huge and heavy stem, so I was wondering what I could do with it? I know that it can be cut and steamed/cooked like the rest ...
14
votes
4answers
1k views

Is asparagus generally recognized as the best vegetable, and why? [closed]

In Germany, everybody knows that asparagus is "the king of vegetables", especially the white variety. When the season starts, there is an asparagus craze, spilling over to unexpected areas like ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

Why blanche vegetables before freezing?

I have a bumper crop of french beans, runners, and (earlier in the summer) peas. I know that we're supposed to blanche vegetables prior to freezing and my general purpose cookbooks tell me how long to ...
13
votes
5answers
5k views

Ham and Pea Soup with whole dried peas instead of split peas?

I am making Ham and Split Pea Soup, however I only have whole dried peas. Will the shell on the whole pea make the soup more difficult to digest? Will the shell spoil the flavor? Or is it just adding ...
13
votes
1answer
5k views

How do I duplicate these chips?

Fell in love with some green bean chips I found at the local health food store. It doesn't have any info on the packaging about how they're made, but they're just green beans that look full (not ...
12
votes
3answers
19k views

Are Green Potatoes OK?

Sometimes when peeling a potato, I find that areas of it are a bright shade of green. Does this mean that: A) The potato is OK to eat? B) The potato is OK to eat, as long as the green parts are ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

Why sweat but not brown?

Many recipes require that you sweat vegetables (celery, onions, etc). Why not saute them and brown them a little instead? Would not that develop the flavors even more? Why would you not want that?
12
votes
1answer
1k views

Why does roasting vegetables before pureeing into soup affect the flavour?

Last night I made a butternut squash soup. The recipe said to roast some squash and onion for 45 mins before boiling with stock for 15 and then pureeing. Is anyone able to explain (in moderate depth) ...
12
votes
4answers
357 views

How do you efficiently clean a leek?

I've often found dirt deep within a leek, under several layers. Going through it all can be a very tiresome process. Is there any trick you can use to clean a leek, without cutting it up and ruining ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Do vegetables ripen like fruit?

This may be a silly question, but I've never seen an unripe vegetable. Is the growing of a vegetable different from a fruit's? I could pick a carrot up from the dirt whenever, and eat it, but I would ...
12
votes
3answers
19k views

How do I clean kale and other leafy vegetables for cooking?

I'm eating a lot of kale and other leafy vegetables lately, and I'm concerned about removing pesticide residue. Is thoroughly rinsing the leaves in cold water enough?
10
votes
4answers
5k views

Why would you Parboil Some Vegetables Before Stir-Frying them?

An example would be green beans - some recipes call for parboiling green beans before stir-frying while others do not? Is there a reason behind this?
10
votes
2answers
2k views

Can I can vegetables using sous-vide?

My girlfriend and I were talking about the summer produce season approaching and hit on the idea of canning sous-vide. That is, rather than sterilizing by high heat for a short amount of time, you ...
10
votes
4answers
5k views

Seasoning steamed vegetables (in particular potatoes): advisable?

We're going through a healthy-eating phase at the moment, and this includes eating a fair few steamed vegetables. Unfortunately I find steamed vegetables (especially potatoes) can be painfully dull ...
10
votes
5answers
2k views

Are there culinary applications for carrot tops/greens?

The family members who taught me to cook have always tossed carrot tops/greens into the compost pile or the trash (and my regular grocery store carries carrots without tops), so I've never really ...
10
votes
3answers
21k views

Difference between boiling and steaming vegetables?

I have eaten both boiled vegetables and steamed vegetables (e.g. broccoli, carrot, zucchini etc.), and I cannot tell the vegetables are cooked in one way or the other, whether by texture or by taste ...
10
votes
3answers
31k views

Which fruits and vegetables should be kept in a fridge, and which outside?

I'm a bit unsure about which fruits and veggies should be kept outside the fridge and which inside. It seems that apples, oranges, and bananas, are normally kept outside, and melons, watermelons, etc ...
10
votes
2answers
995 views

How do you wash fruit and veggies effectively?

When eating or preparing fruit and vegetables, you should wash them beforehand to get rid of pesticides, bacterias, fertilizers, etc. However, I notice that I (and others I know), just put the thing ...
9
votes
4answers
23k views

How does boiling remove vitamin C from food?

It's generally known that boiling vegetables removes a large fraction of vitamin C, but in what way? Does the high temperature destroy it? Is it merely absorbed by the boiling water?
9
votes
3answers
658 views

How to keep fruits and vegetables fresh

I enjoy fresh fruits and vegetables, but the problem is that they seem to go back extremely quickly. It isn't realistic for me to go shopping multiple times a week. Are there any tricks to keeping ...
9
votes
2answers
493 views

Why are non-orange coloured carrots so uncommon?

Carrots come in a great variety of colours, from almost white to dark purple. However, the most ubiquitous colour variety is orange, and often the only to be found in regular supermarkets. Why is ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

Is there an easy way to trim the ends off green beans quickly?

A staple in our house is green beans. It's not uncommon that I'll buy 5-10 lbs and blanch or cook them all in one session, to reheat or eat cold in lunches all week. I also buy fresh beans in bulk ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

Can you start a small mushroom farm at home without using commercial start-up kits? [closed]

Does anyone have any info on starting a small household mushroom farm in a little converted tool shed to grow a variety of mushrooms without using the commercial box start-up kits?
9
votes
4answers
3k views

How can you prepare turnips to make them less bitter?

I peeled and quarted turnips, then roasted with carrots and onions in olive oil and maple syrup, but the turnips were really bitter. Is there a way to roast them (or even another cooking method) to ...
8
votes
9answers
8k views

How do you steam vegetables?

Assuming you don't have a "vegetable steamer" that you received as a wedding gift, how do you steam vegetables?
8
votes
10answers
522 views

What do I do with a kohlrabi?

I've recieved several kohlrabi from my CSA, and I have no idea what to do with them. I found a recipe for a curry using kohlrabi, but it wasn't great. Does anyone have suggestions on how to get the ...
8
votes
6answers
6k views

Should asparagus be peeled before cooking?

I have it from two sources that asparagus should be peeled before being cooked in simmering water (Julia Child) or fried in butter (Heston Blumenthal). I tried Julia's method once and I've been ...
8
votes
6answers
1k views

Preparing eggplant with less oil

I love cooking with eggplant (or aubergine/brinjal in your specific English flavor). However to get rid of the bitter taste and slightly spongy texture, I end up using huge amounts of olive oil, ...
8
votes
3answers
940 views

Will vegetables and fresh herbs last longer in the refrigerator in a plastic bag?

Is there a difference between how long fresh herbs and vegetables last if they are in a plastic bag or in the open? If it does, is there a break-down of which ones it does make a difference for - ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

How good a substitute is callaloo for spinach?

I have seen some good recipes using spinach and have heard over and over that callaloo (amaranth) can be used in place of it. There is confusion about callaloo the plant and callaloo the dish I am ...
8
votes
1answer
9k views

How should I prepare Bok Choy before I cook it?

I just bought a pack of bok choy that I want to steam inside a bag along with some halibut. How should I cut it up before putting it in the bag? Would the preparation be different if I was cooking ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

What are the correct simmering times for chicken/vegetable stock?

I recently read that cooking stock for more than about 2 hours negatively affects the flavor, and eventually vitiates the vitamins due to heat degradation. This seems to conflict with advice I've ...
7
votes
3answers
12k views

Why would cooked spinach contain more iron than raw?

I've been researching the nutrient content of various foods and I've found that cooked spinach appears to have more iron than raw spinach (3.57 mg / 100g vs 2.71 mg /100g). Intuitively, I would have ...
7
votes
5answers
21k views

When should I add spinach to homemade pizza?

When making pizza, do you put the spinach on raw or cooked? I would prefer to put it on raw, but I am concerned that the high water content in the spinach will release in the oven and make the crust ...
7
votes
2answers
712 views

What are the major differences between yams and sweet potatoes?

I was just wondering what the major difference between yams and sweet potatotes. I know yams are more orange and I love yams!
7
votes
4answers
11k views

Why do cauliflower or brussels sprouts sometimes taste bitter, and (how) can I avoid it?

Cauliflower or Brussels Sprouts sometimes taste slightly bitter after cooking. Is this some mistake in the way they are cooked or is that just the vegetables themselves?
7
votes
4answers
4k views

Is it really necessary to properly heat oil in a pan before frying veggies?

As an example, we often lightly fry onions in (preferably) Olive Oil before adding them to any number of dishes, such as scrambled eggs for breakfast. My talented cooking friends frequently remind ...
7
votes
3answers
957 views

How to effectively drain frozen vegetables?

When using frozen vegetables, even if I let them unfreeze overnight, I am finding that they then render quite a bit of water when cooking. How can I drain vegetables more effectively, especially when ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Blanching time for different vegetables

Well my rule of thumb is to boil the following vegetables for that time before putting them in the ice bath: 1 minute for broccoli 3 minutes for carrots 2 minutes for beans 1 minute for flat beans 4 ...
7
votes
2answers
855 views

How do I glaze vegetables?

I'm looking to glaze some carrots, maybe some beets, and a decent chunk of the rest of the season's worth of farmshare. I'm sure there's plenty of recipes on the internet, but I'm looking for some ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Is there some trick to vacuum sealing broccoli?

In Sous Vide for the Home Cook Douglas Baldwin gives a recipe for broccoli. In brief, blanch the broccoli, cool in an ice bath, then vacuum seal as a single layer in a bag with salt, pepper, and ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

How can I keep my split pea soup from becoming too thick during storage?

Every time I have made split pea soup, I have to try to estimate the amounts to be finished in one meal. If I store the leftover soup (in the refrigerator or the freezer), the soup thickens to the ...
7
votes
2answers
147 views

Which end of the cucumber should I save for later?

When using only half of a cucumber, which end of the cucumber should I save for later use - the stem end or the blossom end?
7
votes
3answers
3k views

Can you freeze chopped zucchini?

I know that I can easily freeze shredded zucchini for long-term storage if I stored it in a vacuum sealed freezer bag. However there is a recipe that I really want to make over the winter that ...