12
votes
3answers
451 views

Good breads for evening cooking?

Are there good bread styles or techniques for baking bread in the evening after a day at work? Specifically, there's a couple of us who have taken to bringing food for a meeting every couple of ...
25
votes
5answers
17k views

Is “until juices run clear” a valid test for poultry doneness? Why or why not?

I've come across this particular recommendation many times in various recipes and cookbooks and probably even given it out myself once or twice. Poultry is sufficiently cooked when the juices run ...
25
votes
12answers
57k views

Slow cooking without a slow cooker

I frequently hear people telling me about how wonderful their slow cookers (AKA "crock pot") are. In many cases they're right - meat that tends to come out tough in normal cooking comes out very ...
20
votes
4answers
4k views

How do you properly clean a cutting board and knife to prevent cross contamination?

I have one very nice cutting board that I like to use with my chef's knife. Because I only use this single cutting board and chef's knife, if I have a recipe that calls for cutting raw meat as well ...
19
votes
6answers
7k views

Is it worth tearing lettuce for salad?

I have read that cut lettuce is more likely to brown on the edges than torn lettuce. The stated reasoning is that the lettuce leaves will tear between cell boundaries whereas if they are cut the cells ...
18
votes
13answers
17k views

Induction range vs gas

In the next few months I have a kitchen remodel planned. One item to be replaced is the range/oven. Currently we have a "vintage" electric stove. I am undecided as to whether to choose gas or an ...
16
votes
3answers
6k views

What makes a bread either close or open crumbed/textured?

What causes the texture of bread to be open, ie with lots of large holes, or close, ie a regular, uniform tender crumb with no large holes? How can I achieve either?
13
votes
12answers
954 views

Uses for stale bread?

Community wiki question. I'd like to compile an index of uses for stale bread. Here's a couple off the top of my head. Feel free to just go ahead and edit this list: Panzanella salad (with tomatoes, ...
6
votes
3answers
12k views

What is the correct flour, sugar, butter ratio for crumble?

Looking through a number of fruit crumble recipes I see that there is a wide range of ratios used for crumble topping. Some use equal amounts of flour (or other dry ingredient), sugar and butter. ...
5
votes
3answers
6k views

What are some good substitions for alcohol in cooking?

One of my favorite recipes these days is making a good bananas foster dessert. Everyone I know enjoys it, to some extent, so it's a go-to dessert, for me. One of my concerns, however, is that since ...
23
votes
3answers
8k views

Never ending soup; is it actually safe?

In the poor student or youth worker days it was popular to have never ending soup; a large pot on the stove that was topped up with new and leftover ingredients when available. Normally the pot was ...
23
votes
8answers
7k views

Why not put knives in the dishwasher?

What is it about the dishwasher that harms knives? The only reasons I've found are: You could get cut... I personally have a greater change of getting cut by trying to wash them by hand. The blades ...
22
votes
1answer
4k views

Why should a stock be simmered and not boiled?

Anthony Bourdain's Les Halles cookbook says that a stock should NEVER be boiled, why is this? Does the higher heat extract bitterness or something else undesirable? It seems a little strange because ...
21
votes
6answers
2k views

How can you melt chocolate without it getting wet?

I've tried a (few times) to melt chocolate but am obviously doing something wrong: Put a pot of water onto the boil Place a metal bowl over the pot Put chocolate into the bowl Wait for chocolate to ...
20
votes
10answers
9k views

How do you cook grass-fed beef so it is not tough?

I recently went to a farmers market and bought some grass-fed beef. I went with what we normally buy, and got a couple of bone-in thick cut ribeye. I typically prepare this by liberally applying ...
20
votes
5answers
13k views

Ways to learn to season food correctly?

What is a good way of learning how to season food correctly? Are there some foods which are particularly bland until seasoned correctly that can be used to 'educate' your palate as to what is ...
20
votes
3answers
2k views

Buttermilk substitute?

I've got a recipe that calls for some buttermilk, but none on-hand. Is there some way I could use some common ingredient(s) as a substitute?
17
votes
4answers
757 views

Is there any way to remove stains (e.g. from curries and pasta sauces) from plastic containers?

I like using microwaveable plastic containers to bring my lunch in as they are my lighter than the Pyrex/glass versions. However, reheating my food up creates unsightly stains.
16
votes
3answers
4k views

How can I reheat a roux-based (alfredo) sauce in the microwave without separation?

I made an alfredo sauce last night using a roux made with ghee instead of regular butter, since that's what I had on hand. The ingredients were: ghee, flour, heavy cream, garlic, pecorino romano, and ...
13
votes
15answers
71k views

What oil to use when cooking steak, and what difference does it make?

When cooking steak, I have always been told groundnut oil is the best to use. But what difference does it make? Is it the best? And if it is the best, what's the next best?
12
votes
6answers
29k views

Making cake icing look professionally smooth

So you've got a nice, flat-topped cake after learning on Seasoned Advice how to eliminate doming and now you wish to ice it as perfectly smooth as you see it sometimes done commercially: no ridges ...
12
votes
4answers
735 views

Is unnecessary refrigeration problematic?

Our local grocery store's produce section has a few areas of refrigerated produce along the walls--mostly "wet" vegetables like lettuce, squash, peppers, green beans, etc. The rest, in the middle of ...
12
votes
9answers
35k views

What's the best way to tell that pasta is done (when boiling)?

I've tried a number of different ways to tell when spaghetti, capellini and other pasta types are done, but I'm curious if there are more specific rules of thumb. With regular spaghetti, I've tried ...
12
votes
11answers
18k views

How can I choose good avocados at the supermarket?

I've been trying to ignore my burning desire to make some guacamole because every time I go to the supermarket to buy avocados I can't manage to pick out good ones. They always either become too soft ...
11
votes
10answers
13k views

How to imitate commercial fried chicken?

I'm trying to develop my own "secret" fried recipe, something that is similar to Popeye's or Church's. I'm a LONG ways from getting there. Here's what I did in my last experiment: Chicken was ...
11
votes
3answers
7k views

Gummy residue from baking spray/oil

I'm sure everyone's seen this - that brownish stuff left behind when you grease an area of a baking dish that gets left exposed to the heat. Soap doesn't bother it too much, and it likes to gum up my ...
10
votes
5answers
687 views

What are good references for Gluten free baking

I have several members of my family who are GF. Baking for them has become a real challenge. I'm looking for good references to learn to understand how to work with this limitation in my baking. What ...
9
votes
3answers
4k views

What's the best approach to get runny-yolk sunny side up fried eggs?

I like my eggs Sunny-side up, and ideally, with runny yolk but fully firmed up whites (including a millimeter-thin film of cooked yolk/whites on top of the yolk - not sure if there's a technical term ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

Standard weight conversions for converting cups of flour to grams of flour?

I hate the idea of measuring flour using something as imprecise as measuring scoop. What numbers do you treat as definitive/authoritative/canonical for doing weight conversions for different types of ...
9
votes
5answers
2k views

How to look after non-stick cookware so it lasts?

Over the course of the last 4 years I think I seem to have been working my way through non-stick pans at a ridiculous rate, I think I'm on my 3rd frying pan and 4th wok - or something of that nature. ...
8
votes
2answers
283 views

How does velveting work?

The Chinese technique of velveting works. It creates a lusciously tender bit of meat, and I'm a complete advocate of making the small additional effort. If you've ever done it, you're already a ...
8
votes
2answers
760 views

How can I make yogurt at home?

What are the requirements for making yogurt at home. Is there a solid recipe for making yogurt?
7
votes
3answers
13k views

What to do about yeast that doesn't work?

I am using a new container of yeast from the store; I keep it well-sealed (it's a small jar) and refrigerated. I make sure to use warm water in bread recipes - I check the temperature using a ...
26
votes
3answers
51k views

What is the internal temperature a steak should be cooked to for Rare/Medium Rare/Medium/Well?

I'd like to know when to take my steaks off the grill and please everybody.
20
votes
3answers
4k views

Can I freeze roux?

Is it possible to prepare a (large) batch of roux and then freeze it, or will the texture and flavour be destroyed in the process?
17
votes
2answers
2k views

Best chopping board material for meat

I've heard that using a wooden chopping board for cutting meat is not very hygienic as it is a porous material. If that is the case, then what would a chopping board ideally be made out of when ...
16
votes
3answers
6k views

Does adding salt when soaking dry beans toughen or soften the skin of the bean?

I have heard opinions on both sides of this. The the latest answer on this site, says salt softens bean skins quoted Cooks Illustrated (I can't see the article, but I trust CI), while another answer ...
15
votes
5answers
4k views

Is it really necessary to wash a skillet that will be heated up again soon?

I made some eggs in a cast iron skillet yesterday and didn't wash the skillet. Today I want to make eggs again. Is it really necessary for me to wash the skillet before making more eggs? It would ...
15
votes
6answers
23k views

How should I prepare dried chickpeas?

I've never used dried chickpeas before, but I'm not wanting for chickpea recipes. The bag of dried chickpeas I got contains no instructions for cooking. I know that I need to soak them in water for a ...
14
votes
6answers
2k views

What to look for when purchasing a blender?

I currently don't have a blender after purchasing my own home and am looking to get one for making smoothies primarily, but also for pureeing for soups, etc. I had a smoothie maker that I won as a ...
13
votes
1answer
2k views

How can I grow my own yeast (sourdough starter)?

I would like to always have my own culture of yeast (sourdough starter) in my fridge at home. Does anyone know how to grow yeast and keep it alive?
13
votes
15answers
12k views

Why does my chicken breast become so dry?

When I roast a whole chicken, I always make sure that my chicken is cooked to the proper temperature. Quite often, this results in juicy legs and thighs, but dry breasts. Is there a reason the ...
12
votes
2answers
777 views

Is it possible to temper chocolate at home?

I've read that tempering chocolate is the only way to get glossy, 'snappable' results. I've also read that it can be a complicated process involving precise temperatures. Is it possible to temper ...
12
votes
3answers
11k views

Why skim “scum” from the surface of a simmering stock?

I've been reading various Googled recipes and techniques for stockmaking, as I made my first stock tonight using raw chicken bones. Just about every article/recipe I read says to skim the surface of ...
12
votes
8answers
1k views

What oils are “required” for a decent home kitchen?

What different varieties of oil are really needed in a decent home kitchen? I ask because I've only two right now (olive & sunflower) that I try to use "correctly" but sometimes use ...
12
votes
3answers
25k views

How do you make pork rinds?

The little bit I currently know is that they're fried pig skins. However, beyond that it's just a bunch of hand-waving on my part. Do you buy pig skin from a butcher? Is there a special type you ...
11
votes
6answers
20k views

How to avoid getting the pizza all watery?

When I cook pizza it gets all watery. There's literarily water formed on top of the dough. I believe it's released by the mozzarella, but I'm not totally sure. Any ideas how to avoid this? Some more ...
11
votes
4answers
6k views

What is the purpose of sifting dry ingredients?

What is the purpose of sifting dry ingredients (esp. with flour)? I heard in one place that it was because this is the best way to mix them well. I heard somewhere else that this is a carry-over from ...
10
votes
3answers
3k views

Can I sous-vide meat (at a temperature between 40ºF and 140ºF) for more than four hours?

According to the USDA cooking chicken at 145ºF (63ºC) for 13 minutes (i.e. maintaining an internal temperature of 145ºF for that long) will bring about a "7 log10 relative reduction of salmonella". A ...
8
votes
5answers
7k views

Why does whip cream dispenser sometimes produce “ragged” cream?

Sometimes I make whipped cream in my ISI cream whipper and it comes out beautifully fluffy and smooth, and other times when I dispense it, the cream looks "ragged" for lack of a better description. ...

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