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26

Onions always benefit from a few minutes on their own to soften and start sweetening. Garlic burns easily, especially when finely chopped or crushed, so in general should not be fried as long as onion. Having said that, when doing a quick stir fry or similar dish, you can throw in the garlic first for 10-20 seconds so that it flavours the oil.


21

There's a great experiment on Cooking Issues that deals with this very problem. The general advice is to not crowd the pan because of the concomitant release of water; however, the guys found that doing this is actually beneficial because, although a lot of water is initially released, by the time the liquid has eventually evaporated the mushrooms have ...


18

Onions The more you cook an onion, the sweeter it is going to get; heat breaks down the volatiles and complex starches and converts them to sugars. When an onion is completely brown then it is basically caramelized. The point of sweating onions is to draw out some of the pungency, but not all. If you cook them 'til they're brown (caramelized) then they ...


16

Pan frying means letting the food sit in the pan and occasionally stirring or flipping. It tends to be done with larger pieces of food, and at a medium to medium-high heat. Sautéing means shaking the pan back and forth - making the food "jump", if you're translating directly. It's done at a high heat, for a short time, usually with thinly-sliced or ...


14

The boiling point of most cooking oils is much higher than their smoke points. The boiling point of olive oil, for example, is around 300°C (572°F), which is hotter than the temperature of a pan on a typical residential range/cooktop. With that said, alcohols and esters which make up the flavor and fragrance of the oil will have lower boiling points and ...


14

The coating you are talking about is potato starch that is browning on the bottom of the pan, similar to what happens to roux when it is prepared. If you deglaze the pan using alcohol, it will come right off without any effort (water works too, though more is needed). As for how to get the potatoes not to stick, it's important that the pan and the oil are ...


14

Examining your questions in order: The general rule is onions first. Sauté the garlic towards the end for 30-ish seconds before removing from the heat. As ElendilTheTall correctly pointed out, garlic can scorch quickly, especially if you tend to sauté on the hot side (as I do). Starting your sauté with onions first has two advantages: it allows you to ...


13

Also, you can get uncoated steel a lot hotter than you can get teflon (which will break down -- it's basically plastic). So you can sear meats at a much higher temperature than you can cook them on teflon. For some things it doesn't matter, like sweating vegetables, but anything where you want to get some real heat involved to develop browned flavors, you're ...


13

It depends some on technique, and some on what you're cooking. And it depends on your definition of "sticking." Foods that are high in protein (especially those low in fat) are more prone to sticking. So a really lean white fish, which is almost all protein, will want to stick. Likewise, egg whites can stick. To some extent, almost any food that doesn't ...


13

Indian food is commonly cooked with ghee (clarified butter), for both religious and flavor reasons. Where ghee is not used, coconut or refined palm oil are common. I can also tell you from experience that Indian food can be made with unflavored vegetable oils (canola, sunflower or soy), without a deleterious effect on flavor or texture.


12

The advantage of using stainless steel is the fond (tasty brown bits) that form in the pan. It both flavors whatever you are sauteing and is often used as the base for a pan sauce.


11

I would do it the other way round, I'd fry the sausages first, then add the veg. This has a few benefits as I see it:- The sausages will brown more evenly, purely aesthetic but some people will think they are not cooked if they are not brown. You'll get the oil out of the sausages so you'll have a better idea of how much oil to add when you add the veg, ...


11

A few tips: Marinate the meat first (after chopping, before stir-frying); Mix the sauce first - don't just dump the ingredients separately into the wok; Add corn starch or tapioca flour to the sauce to thicken it. I wouldn't even call it a sauce without any thickening agent. About 1 tbsp per cup of sauce should be alright. (Note: The sauce should be ...


11

Perhaps a bit of over-analysis going on yes. Generally I'd toss the pan if I was frying a lot of small items such as croutons, or toasting nuts, in order to turn a lot of them over at once. To toss the pan, first tilt it up so that some of the contents slide to the opposite end and rest against the lip of the pan. Then tilt it back level while ...


11

The flip answer is that sauteed food will taste good, and the microwaved version you're describing will not. A more useful answer, however, would consider physics and chemistry. Microwaving excites molecules, resulting in heat, presuming an adequate supply of water molecules to excite. Sauteeing conducts heat from the heat source to the food by way of the ...


9

North American cookware companies seem to use the terms "saute" and "sauteuse" interchangeably, but technically, the saute pan is the straight-sided one, and the sauteuse or "fry pan" is the slope-sided one. In French cooking equipment terms, the straight-sided one is called a "sautoir", and the sauteuse has higher sides and while angled out, they are not ...


8

I disagree with Daniel, you can absolutely eat the "vein" in a shrimp. Whole un-peeled shrimp are called peel-and-eat and that's exactly what you can do. Basically, when you are first cooking the shrimp you get the make the shells on/shells off decision and if you go with shells off, you should de-vein, otherwise you just serve as is. As for preparing ...


8

The big difference is that oil can get to a higher temperature than water can. Water turns to steam at 212F, while most oils won't start smoking until 300-400F. Caramelization doesn't happen until 320F (for sucrose and glucose, 230F for fructose), while browning (the Maillard reaction, to be specific) doesn't happen until 375F. Now when you "saute" like ...


8

Supermarket 'stew beef' is notoriously unreliable. Its often just scraps of beef that the butcher or market can't sell otherwise. My stews were hit and miss for years while I tried to tweak cooking time and such. But then one day I watched a movie on rouxbe.com (paywall, sorry) and they talked about not using 'stew beef' - its often too lean and doesn't ...


8

I wonder where you have read it. Your link doesn't help, maybe you linked the wrong question? It talks about using a stainless pan with oil. If you are talking about true saute (very quick movement of bite-sized pieces of food on a very hot pan), it is completely impossible without oil. If you are misusing the term to mean shallow frying, you can do it ...


7

Not long at all. Usually 1 minute is enough. If it starts to turn brown, it's been in there too long.


7

The foaming is caused by the water in the butter boiling away. The main reason you wait for it to subside is simply because that means the butter has had long enough to reach a proper temperature for cooking: too cold and the food will absorb the butter rather than fry in it. However, this usually applies more to recipes that require relatively fast cooking. ...


7

Mushrooms contain a lot of water, so you'll never be able to avoid it completely. However, you can reduce it by: Frying in smaller batches, which prevents too much water being released at once, which prevents efficient evaporation. Not stirring the mushrooms too vigorously, especially early on in the process. The tendency is to add the mushrooms to the pan ...


7

There are no real doneness rules on mirepoix per se (even raw is used in some dishes). However, the recipe designer may say sweat versus sauté to give an indication of colour and flavour depth to match the 'headliner' of the dish (usually the meat). Although not a rule, you may generally see sweat used more for lighter meats like fish and fowl and sauté ...


6

According to Wikipedia, the preparation of a wat begins with chopped onions slow cooked, without any fat or oil, in a dry skillet or pot until much of their moisture has been driven away. Fat (usually niter kibbeh) is then added, often in quantities that might seem excessive by modern Western standards, and the onions and other aromatics are sautéed ...


5

I don't know how to explain this well in words, but there's at least two different methods for flipping stuff in a pan, because you have either curved or straight sides on the pan. I personally find it easier to do in a curved sided pan: I extend my arm forward, then quickly flip the back of the pan up while pulling back at the same time. The curved side ...


5

I have found that pan size, shape, and amount of food in the pan makes a big difference in how you can toss and roll the pan. I find myself most comfortable tossing omelette pans (I use the Calphalon line - like this one). The shape of the edge of the pan makes it very easy for me to toss anything from large to small, thick to thin. I still find it ...


5

I've never really considered there to be a real difference between sautéing and frying. They both mean to cook in a hot pan with a little bit of fat. However there isn't a lot of consistency online. It doesn't look like there's any sort of definitive answer here. Some points of view: They're the same, although frying might involve slightly more oil. The ...



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