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41
votes
13answers
235k views

What's the Ideal Coffee to Water Ratio for a French Press?

What's the ideal amount of coffee to use per cup of water in a French press? I've looked at various online resources, which all gave me a different amount. Some call for 2 tablespoons per 6 oz of ...
27
votes
6answers
32k views

When boiling water, why start from cold?

A question about probably the most mundane subject in cooking: boiling water. For cooking techniques where you drop ingredients in simmering or boiling water - such as for vegetables, pasta, many ...
21
votes
3answers
1k views

Does water that's been left to sit and then reboiled taste different from fresh water boiled once?

This may sound like a silly question, but I've always wondered: If I boil some water and use some of it and leave the remainder in the kettle, and then a few days later boil that same water again, ...
20
votes
7answers
13k views

Does adding salt help water boil faster?

I've always heard adding salt to water makes it boil faster. Is this true? If so, why? If not, why do people do it?
20
votes
2answers
5k views

What causes water to boil over?

What are the mechanics of water boiling over? How can you stop it from happening? Is it more likely to happen with certain ingredients? Which? How does the amount of water effect the likelihood of ...
19
votes
2answers
9k views

Does Boiling Water, Instead of Warm Water, Hurt the Flavor of Tea/Hot Chocolate

I have a counter-top water kettle that I frequently use to boil water for tea, hot chocolate, and powdered drinks (e.g. chai). I don't think anything of it when the water starts boiling and keeps on ...
17
votes
7answers
2k views

Is it safe to cook with rainwater?

Is it safe to use rainwater as an ingredient versus tap water - or even cooking things in it like pasta? Would there be any differences in measurements or cooking times - the thought being that there ...
17
votes
6answers
3k views

Can food be boiled “extra fast/hard” in water?

Once water is boiling you can either leave the heat on quite high, or turn it down a bit so that it just keeps boiling. Apart from extra water vaporating, does this have any effect on the taste of ...
16
votes
1answer
3k views

Why do some powders clump in hot water?

Why do some powders like flour or green tea causes lumps in hot water while other powders like sugar or cocoa readily dissolve? Cocoa: http://imgur.com/ncmN1ki.jpg
15
votes
3answers
6k views

At what point is water considered “at a boil?”

Lots of recipes call for waiting for the water to come "to a boil." However I have never been sure when that is. From my viewpoint it could be at three different points: First start to see small air ...
14
votes
2answers
6k views

Why is water often added to the eggs when making omelettes?

Why is water often added to the eggs when making an omelette? Also, is there a recommended amount of water?
13
votes
4answers
8k views

What is the white foam that builds up when I make tea?

I microwave water in order to make tea. After it is microwaved and I drop the tea bag(green tea) into the water, thick white foam builds up on the top. What is it and should I worry about drinking ...
12
votes
8answers
11k views

How can I maximize the caffeine content of my coffee?

Like many people, I rely on coffee in the morning to really get me going for the day. I always use more than the directions require to get more caffeine for that extra morning jolt. How much ground ...
12
votes
2answers
22k views

Does water boil faster with the lid on?

When bringing water to a boil from cold water, what effect does a lid have on the time to boil? Does it increase or decrease the time? How much? Why?
11
votes
3answers
9k views

Is it safe to reheat old water in an electric kettle?

I usually throw away the remaining water in the electric kettle before refilling it if the water is more than about a day old. In theory wouldn't boiling kill any impurities the old water might have? ...
10
votes
3answers
1k views

Boiling things using salt

Since recently i have to cook for myself and a lot of products mention i should boil some water with salt and when it boils add the product. Why on earth do you have to add salt to the water?
10
votes
2answers
7k views

How much warm is warm water?

I'm following a recipe for making dough for a challah recipe, and the recipe calls for warm water. How warm should the water be (in degrees)? Do I need to heat it, or is room-temperature good enough? ...
10
votes
1answer
8k views

Can I fix a box cake recipe where I added oil instead of water?

I screwed up and put 1 1/4 cup veg oil instead of water in my box cake recipe. Is there any way to fix this? Can I add flour or something? Or is it doomed for the trash can?
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Why does sauce go watery after freezing?

If I freeze a sauce, particularly something with mince in it, when defrosted it produces excess water. The sauce before frozen is nicely thickened. I think it might be because the proteins in the ...
7
votes
5answers
1k views

How do I stop my pans boiling over?

Yesterday the wife and I decided to boil some potatoes in a normal non-stick pan. We added salt, potatoes and boiling water. We put this on an electric hob, with no lid at maximum heat (marked at ...
7
votes
2answers
5k views

Is hot tap water safe for cooking?

I'll typically bring hot water from the tap to the boil instead of waiting longer for cold water. This hot water comes from water heater with a large storage tank. Is this considered safe? For ...
7
votes
4answers
3k views

Is it necessary to rinse Chinese or other tea before first brew / steep / infusion?

I've been told that I should be rinsing Chinese tea with the boiled water before the first full infusion intended for drinking. I make the occasional very-expensive tea from Taiwan and I feel it is a ...
7
votes
1answer
4k views

How do you smoke water?

Roux mention in this answer smoking water. How do you do this? What does it taste like? How do you use it? Sounds fascinating!
6
votes
6answers
636 views

My water is boiling too fast

Every time I try to boil a pot of water to make spaghetti, I leave the kitchen to go do something else (I am very busy lol). Sometimes I come back to find the pot boiling over and a mess on my stove! ...
6
votes
1answer
237 views

What property makes a liquid soapy/bubbly?

Is there a scientific or food industry term for what makes a water solution behave like a detergent, and perhaps an associated unit of measure? For example, the pH of a solution measures its acidity; ...
5
votes
1answer
327 views

What's the purpose of adding water to an egg wash?

Many recipes I've seen call for beating a tablespoon or so of water in with the egg for an egg wash. What is the effect of adding the water to the egg wash when baking?
5
votes
6answers
10k views

Could rice or pasta be cooked without hot water?

I moved in a brand new house. I have no stove, microwaves or hot water for a week or two. I'm vegetarian and I've already prepared fresh veggies wrap, salad, hummus, sandwichs, .. but I'm wondering ...
5
votes
4answers
720 views

Is it ok to keep reusing a water bottle indefinitely?

I have a 1.5 liter plastic water bottle (the disposable kind) that I keep on a shelf by my bed. I fill it every night before bed, and generally nearly finish it by the morning and refill it when I ...
5
votes
1answer
669 views

Why do crisp bread rolls have more water than soft bread rolls?

I was wondering why my recipe for crisp bread rolls needed more water than soft bread rolls.
5
votes
3answers
2k views

How much CO2 does it take to carbonate water using a household Soda Siphon?

A soda siphon seems to be the de facto device for carbonating water at home. A search of reviews and comments on the consumption and cost of CO2 yields the following results: 70 cents or one ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

What's the best option for water for tea in the office?

When making tea at home, I have all the equipment I need to make a fine cup of tea. In the office, however, my options are more limited. It seems my sources for hot water are: Straight from the tap ...
4
votes
4answers
239 views

Using noodle cooking water to loosen sauce?

One of my guilty pleasures is perusing my wife's Real Simple magazine for recipe ideas and cooking tips. In the March 2013 issue one of the cooking tips has me a bit confused. In the Three Steps to ...
4
votes
4answers
373 views

How to absorb/remove excess water that you've added to a dish?

My cooking style involves putting a bunch of ingredients (e.g. chicken, rice, mushrooms, tomatoes) in a pot, adding water and seasoning, turning on the heat, and coming back half an hour later. ...
4
votes
2answers
192 views

How to saute without oil on stainless steel pots/pans?

In an effort to reduce oils from my diet, I've been trying to saute without oil, but I'm not sure how to do it. In doing so, my pans now have a brown residue that is impossible to wash off. I have ...
4
votes
1answer
84 views

A question on the level of water when making tea in an electic kettle?

Suppose I boil water in an electric kettle in order to add hot water in a cup containing a tea bag. Should I cover the metal ring with water or is it ok if the level of water is halfway through the ...
4
votes
2answers
377 views

Whiskey and Water

In his answer http://cooking.stackexchange.com/a/24354/6279 @user5561 indirectly makes the claim that it is 'preferable' to mix whiskey with water from the same source as the distillery. So the ...
4
votes
2answers
72 views

Why do salt flakes start building up in a bottle of mineral water after it was first opened?

I noticed that mineral water with high mineralization doesn't have salt flakes floating on the bottom of the bottle on store shelves, but when I open one, after some time they start accumulating. Does ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

What to do when too much liquid added to flour mixture?

I seem to have a bad habit of mis-calculating ingredients, particularly the liquid ones. Can I just boil off excess water that I've added to a flour mixture (in this case a pizza dough)? Any other ...
3
votes
2answers
873 views

Do I need to adjust recipes when using hard water

Our well water tastes very good but is extremely hard (220 mg/L). Do I need to make any adjustments when cooking or baking or will it work fine?
3
votes
2answers
558 views

Can I use reverse osmosis water for cooking?

I am considering buying an in-line reverse osmosis (RO) filter for our new house, as #1, I like to drink good water, and #2, I like to brew with good water. Somewhere in between those two, however, ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the purpose of vinegar in this lollipop recipe?

I found a recipe for lollipops. It uses 2:2:1 ratio of sugar:water:vinegar. What exactly is the role of vinegar in it? The recipe was: 10 spoons of granulated/crystalic sugar 10 spoons of ...
3
votes
2answers
522 views

How can I create a drinkable ice slurry?

Based on the idea behind this question on the physics sister site to this site, how can I process ice to create a drinkable ice slurry? When I stick ice cubes and water in the blender, the ice shards ...
2
votes
5answers
2k views

Steel Cut Oats: cooking in milk vs. water

Most of the recipes I've seen (including Good Eats') recommend simmering the oats in 4 cups of liquid for 1 cup of oats. AB recommends 3 cups of water for ~25 mins and then (1/2 cup of milk + 1/2 cup ...
2
votes
4answers
2k views

Boiling eggs on an electric or gas stove: why the boiling time difference?

Having fairly recently moved from a country where cooking on gas is the standard (the Netherlands) to a country where cooking electrically is the standard (Sweden), I've noticed that I need to boil my ...
2
votes
3answers
793 views

Is there a difference in tepid water and lukewarm water?

Is there a difference in tepid water and lukewarm water? Are the terms interchangeable?
2
votes
2answers
114 views

Water boiling and cooking time

Will there be a difference in the time for which it will take for eggs to be prepared in the cases mentioned below? A. Cooking eggs in a pot on full gas power until the water reach boiling point - ...
2
votes
1answer
91 views

What happens when you add warm water to yeast?

I understand that the yeast activates, but why does this happen? Is the water simply absorbed into the yeast?
2
votes
2answers
184 views

Using other liquid than water when making stock

I got to thinking... I usually hear chefs (particularly Alton Brown as of late, since I am watching Good Eats) say that water is neutral and should only be used as a last resort, serving only to ...
2
votes
1answer
252 views

Oil-like stain when cooking with gas

I've been boiling water with some new pots on a gas stove and it leaves (left) a stain on the bottom (on the inside) that has the same color pattern as when oil drifts on water. What could be causing ...
2
votes
3answers
256 views

Are there culinary uses for the water left from peeling almonds?

Is there a possible use for the water used for peeling almonds? (Throw the almonds in boiling water and let them soak for a couple of mins before peeling them: the water left is yellowish and almond ...