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80

Apart from water, rice is mainly made from starch. Starch is initially packed in a crystalline structure that is not soluble. However if you soak it for long enough or expose it to heat, the starch slowly 'unpacks' and binds with water, resulting in a soluble compound. This is called starch gelatinization, and is what you are aiming for when you soak your ...


21

Arsenic reduction To add to what @ShiftyThomas said Now, some ways of cooking rice reduce arsenic levels more than others. We carried out some tests with Prof Meharg and found the best technique is to soak the rice overnight before cooking it in a 5:1 water-to-rice ratio. That cuts arsenic levels by 80%, compared to the common approach of using two ...


19

Soaking beans will not soften them. If done for a very long time (i.e., days), some beans will eventually begin to sprout or ferment, at which point they will become softer. But that is generally not desirable for basic cooking. Instead, you'll need to cook the beans to get them to soften. Bring to a slow boil and then simmer until the interior is the ...


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Summary: Baking soda is mostly used to soften the beans faster and decrease cooking time by increasing pH. In some scenarios, it has been shown to aid in breaking down gas-causing sugars as well. Higher concentrations of baking soda and/or pressure cooking may be needed to make this latter effect significant. In most cases, an increased soaking time will ...


13

As others have said, soaking mostly decreases cooking time. That's the main reason to do it. With some beans, the difference in time is minimal, but with tougher beans that take longer to cook (e.g., black beans), soaking can reduce cooking time significantly, particularly if the beans are a little older and more dried out. The reason is because the ...


12

The actual action of soaking is what does most of the work. Most legumes have complex oligosaccharides, a type of complex sugar. Digestion of this complex sugar is what causes flatulence. By soaking your beans will help remove some of this excess sugar. Be sure you discard the soaking water. Though it is often said that adding baking soda helps I've yet ...


11

According to this extensive bean cooking guide from University of Alaska Fairbanks, the secret is to simmer the beans gently. Unfortunately, they have little more to say on the matter. Kenji Lopez-Alt, in his column on Food Myths at Serious Eats says (emphasis added): Most of us have been told at some point in our culinary careers that salting beans ...


10

Washing fruit and vegetables in water is less an exercise in sterilisation and more a case of simply washing off any mud or debris. Soaking in still water does nothing to clean, well, anything really. Even if you sterilise the water and container, the fruit itself will still be teeming with bacteria which would be perfectly happy to multiply in stagnant ...


9

It may be the case that soaking beans without salt has negligible effect. However, Cook's Illustrated has found that soaking the beans in a brine solution has a significant benefit to the beans, and all of their recent recipes using dried beans call for this step. Here's what they have to say: Brining isn’t just for meat. When you soak dried beans in ...


9

The Christmas cake recipe I use (from Mary Berry's Fast Cakes) soaks the fruit in sherry for 3 days (and doesn't call for refrigeration). It comes to no harm at all. I have tried less time, and that's OK but either way it needs a couple of stirs to ensure even soaking (this is more important for shorter soaks).


7

In addition to what rheone said, I have noticed that using baking soda kind of softens food. A characteristica example of this is Use baking soda in green vegetables to keep them green after cooking is done which isn't the best solution because just a minute is enough to miss it and eat a soup instead of green vegetables. I have also noticed that if ...


7

Rinsing the rice is always suggested, it removes the leftover husk, powder from the rice being handled and/or processed, insect fragments (you'd be amazed!) and more. Soaking the rice is part of the cooking process. Wild and brown rice benefit from this because they'll more evenly cook 'to the tooth (al dente)' with less liquid and time; this is how you get ...


6

Well, it looks like I found my answer: Field corn is used for creating masa de maíz (see this link for my source). Field corn includes a few types of corn (dent, flour, flint, waxy). I'm not sure if all types of field corn are used for masa de maíz, however. So, if anyone has a more specific answer, feel free to give it. I'm guessing really any kind of ...


6

It doesn't really matter much one way or the other, if you do it on the counter. Oj16 is making the case for preventing an insect getting in - at least where I live, this basically never happens. The other concerns in that answer are for me misplaced - some dust will fall in, but it is the same dust I breathe when I walk around in the kitchen, and if it is ...


5

Although we often think of beans as a long-shelf life product, you'll occassionally run across some older beans, cook them, and they just never get soft. The US Dry Bean Council mentions in their FAQ: How long can I store dry beans? Dry beans keep up to a year in an airtight container in a cool, dry environment, away from direct sunlight. During storage, ...


4

I just finished a Pinto bean recipe found in Cooks Illustrated Jan Feb 2015 edition titled Drunken Beans. They suggested: 3 Tbsp of salt for ever 4 quarts of water used during a soak. Duration 8 - 24 hours, drain and rinse. Dispose of soaking water and use a moderate oven 350 degrees to cook the beans. Oven use allows the bean to cook gently. Duration ...


4

Main ingredient for making a traditional dosa is rice. Rice can't be substituted. Although you can definitely reduce the amount of rice you are using. From what you've mentioned, you are using 3:1 rice to black lentil ratio. Using 2:1 rice to lentil ratio can also yield you similar batter without compromising the crispiness. I am assuming that you only use ...


4

Assuming food-safe seeds (are there basil seeds that aren't?), yes it is safe, both to drink the water and to eat the seeds. That's the point. Just now I have been experimenting with different ways to drink soaked Sacred Basil seeds. Other types of basil seeds seem to work just the same way, as evidenced by the results of an Amazon search for "basil seeds ...


4

If the basil seeds are safe, the water should be also safe. If you have food-grade basil seeds (i.e. non-teated seeds) and didn't soak them for too long (so pathogens had enough time to grow), this should be safe. I think soaked basil seed last as long as soaked chia seeds, 2 weeks. There are even desserts / drinks with basil seeds and the water in which ...


4

For the actual numbers you asked for, I found rather a large variety, even from a small number of papers. All I really feel like I can say is that something like 12 hours probably gets you a substantial reduction (25-50%), and it depends on the bean. Based on this paper which soaked for 3 and 12 hours, it looks like for many beans, including lentils and ...


4

You made something what in Poland we call tincture Nalewka . But we usually use 160 proof spirit. Fresh fruits in alcohol will infuse it with it's taste and sweetness. Very good with clean alcohol. Not so great with one that already have some aroma in it. May produce strange things as whiskey wood may not go well with some fruit freshness (for me anyway). ...


4

I assume you’re not mixing the terms rinsing and soaking: Rinsing is for geting rid of excess starch on the surface of the rice. This way it won’t be sticky or be less sticky. Soaking rice does two things: It will, hydrate the rice grains; thus they will cook slightly faster (dry rice also cooks pretty fast) You extract the surface starches into the ...


4

Rice is going to cook okay even if you don't soak it. You do, however, want to wash it until the water runs clear so that you get rid of excess starch and so that it doesn't stick together. However, if you're worried about arsenic - and apparently this is a thing - soaking the rice would reduce the arsenic levels significantly. It is not something that's ...


4

You don't even need to cook them, let alone soak them. They form the bulk of most mueslis, to be eaten raw. However, if you're going to be making porridge... The basic recipe has as many variations as there are people who cook it, but take any or all of Water Milk Salt Sugar [or honey or anything sweet] Oats Use approx 300ml liquid to 50g oats per person ...


3

According to Ask A Chef the cornmeal is not necessary. It is the salt water that actually causes the clams to purge themselves: The thought behind using cornmeal is that it is an irritant that causes the clam to "cough" and expel all sand that may be in its shell. There is also a thought that it helps to change the flavor of the meat and make them ...


3

If you have "hard water" (mineral-rich water, most common in well water, but my town water is this way) no amount of soaking or cooking is going to soften them. If you go the "long soak" rehydration route, three tablespoons of salt per gallon of water will prevent the beans from toughening. For the "quick soak" method, a quarter to half a teaspoon ("a ...


3

Coating fruit pieces in cornstarch, tapioca starch etc. can bind juices into a jelly around them instead of letting them seep into fillings; experimentation is needed to check whether it works well with your intended texture.


3

I have soaked mine many times up to 2.5 days until I could get to them. I always plan to soak for 1 to 1.5 days (overnight then cook the next evening would be 1.5 days) but life happens so I just change the water and soak (on my countertop) another 24 hours without any problems. I do soak my beans in water with some apple cider vinegar and salt, the ...


3

I usually let it soak overnight, though it isn't necessary to soak that long. You should soak it till it forms a paste/gel like consistency and it would take at least 2-3 hours, though this website claims under ten minutes (time might vary depending on the batch of the seeds). You could also soak it in any juice or fruit extract as well. Additionally, you ...


3

Why we add fenugreek leaves in dishes: Normally in Indian dishes we used to add herbs for removing common health issues,the benefits of adding fenugreek leave and indian herbs while cooking can be seen here: http://chefinyou.com/ingredients/what-is-fenugreek/ (for new users: what is it and what uses it has) http://www.indiamart.com/glittoexports/spices-...


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