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17

Ah, One Pot Pasta.... As loads of bloggers, authors and cooks - possibly inspired by Martha Stewart and her team - have confirmed: dumping the pasta, sauce ingredients and a carefully meassured amount of liquid in one pot or pan will give you a "pasta and sauce" dish in ten to fifteen minutes. And it works. Sort of. Your instinct matches my experience: ...


5

Generally, browning meat is done at high heat, with a preheated pan well over 400°F, and will leave a bunch of tasty brown stuff (fond) stuck to the bottom of the pan. Vegetables contain a lot of water, which will dissolve the fond off the bottom of the pan, bringing its flavor in to the dish. If you did it in the other order, you'd have maybe have some ...


2

Meat first - adds some of the meat fat to the pan, and adds flavors from the meat to the pan, which carries them onto the vegetables. Other direction - veggies don't pick up meat flavor, oil or butter has to provide all the fat for the veggies to sauté in. Preferred - whatever you prefer, you're creating the recipe, or try it both ways and see what you ...


1

You do not add fat to sugar when caramelizing it, you add it to the pan dry. Sugar has water suspended in it, and it comes out when heated. The caramel will transfer the heat to the onions just fine - anyone who's ever gotten splattered with hot caramel will attest to that.


1

I've watched how hey do it at some restaurants by cooking the beans first and then putting them in a bowl and tossing them with garlic that is added at that point. This eliminates the potential of the garlic getting overcooked and ruining the dish while also making it easier for the garlic to stick.


1

I use a microplane zester/grater to essentially reduce my garlic to very fine shreds, almost a paste: This produces fine enough pieces of garlic that they essentially become part of the sauce. It also really maximizes the flavor because of the increased surface area. The only issue with this method is that the very fine pieces of garlic can burn easily, ...


2

I'm going to guess that you're using fresh garlic, because I had that problem with another dish. I solved it by toasting my chopped fresh garlic for five minutes at 250°F on a pre-heated cookie sheet first lightly sprayed with Pam with Olive Oil. That way, it's dry on the outside (and thus more prone to sticking), but still moist and tender on the inside.


1

A quarter teaspoon of calcium hydroxide (slaked lime) will neutralize acid nicely, without adding a nasty flavor as does sodium bicarbonate. Found this out while nixtamalizing corn for tortillas. It works well for over-acid tomatoes, but you want to avoid adding too much as the base itself is not very soluble. You can buy the stuff at any Mexican or Latin ...


2

Usually when sauteeing (or more precisely, sweating) vegetables meant to form an aromatic base, you're doing three things: Breaking down cell walls Developing new flavors through mild caramelization Driving off moisture The first of these is really the most important; driving off moisture is a natural result of doing so. The cell walls in vegetables act ...


3

You can' "cook off" acidity, but you can balance it. Typically in marinara, that is done with a small amount of sugar, or, better yet, half of a grated carrot per 28 oz can of tomatoes, sweated with your onion.



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