Hot answers tagged

62

Poorly. Pasta doesn't absorb all that much flavor from spices in the water, other than maybe salt (and even then you must add excessive amounts of salt to make the resulting pasta evidently salty.) Add spices to whatever sauce you pour on the pasta, otherwise you're wasting like 90% of them. An alternative would be kneading the spices into the pasta dough. ...


51

"Hotness" is a quite vague description which can be caused by a number of chemical compounds and is percieved by various receptors. Chili peppers (capsicum) contain the alkaloid capsaicin. If your restaurant insisted that there were no chilis included, there is a slight possibility that they used it under another name (ethnic restaurants or other regions of ...


46

Cinnamon is the bark of a tree. It is either sold as rolled strips of bark (=cinnamon sticks) or ground. It will not dissolve, neither in water nor in alcohol. What you want to do is basically the same as was done commercially with the vanilla extract you are already using: Extract the taste, then discard the bark itself. Alcohol is a good choice for ...


45

If you premix to make a rub, it's easier to apply spices evenly. Otherwise, you must individually apply a small amount (for example, 1/4 tsp) of several spices evenly. With a rub, you make the spice mixture with the desired proportions, and there is a larger aggregate amount to spread.


42

It's convenience, and actually doubly so: It helps to find the cloves (biting down on a clove is horrible, imho, much more than on a stray peppercorn) and it especially if you are using onions with the skin on helps in keeping the onion together. Not as much as leaving the root plate intact, but at least prevents the papery brown skin from drifting off. If ...


38

They may have been trying to describe "salt and Japanese pepper". Japanese pepper is unrelated to black pepper, but closely related to Sichuan pepper; its flavor has been described as "lemony" and it has a "numbing" quality. It's also known as "sansho". Mixtures of pre-ground sansho and salt are readily available in Asian grocery stores. This mixture is ...


30

One important fact to note here is that many spices are oils or oil-soluble. Pepper, for example, will dissolve effectively in oil, and thus the flavor of pepper can be imparted into other things thereby; however, if you attempt to dissolve it in water, you'll mostly end up with the pepper just staying in the peppercorn (if whole or large pieces) or ...


28

I cannot +1 Peter V because of my poor reputation, but he is right: in Italian cooking you don't go for mix, what you look for is a balance between a few ingredients, normally one from different kind of foods: one cereal, one vegetable, one spice for example. The main spice (or fresh herb) is parsley: it is so common that it is used in figurative language ...


27

I'm aware of three reasons that you might not want to do so: You tie up spices that you might want to use in other dishes individually You don't always want to add the spices at the same time. You can't always keep spices well-blended. If you only tend to cook one dish or you leave some of each spice in reserve, the first one isn't really a problem. The ...


25

I'm pretty sure it's just crushing the husks a bit so they crack open - that's how I do it when I see "lightly crushed" for cardamom pods. It gives access to the seeds inside so flavor can infuse out of the pod and into the dish. The whole pod should be visible in the recipe, and removed before eating (would be a woody bite, else). If you crush the husk ...


24

Dried bay is sometimes left in, for example this herb mix from Schwartz includes bay leaves (at less than 3%). Dried they can easily be crushed and added as a powder, but you don't often want a lot of dried bay as the flavour can be quite overpowering. I only use fresh bay as I have a plant outside the kitchen door and it's evergreen. Fresh, I have been ...


23

I tend to just stick the spices in a tea egg I do this whenever I think the spices will get in the way during my process or when I want to remove them before serving, such as in case of a bouquet garni, cloves or juniper berries. Should you be reluctant to use metal in your recipe you can of course use loose leaf tea bags. Either way you can just lift ...


19

It's nutmeg. The author of that blog is from Switzerland, so I imagine that term is used there, but I had never heard used culinarily until now. I Googled "Grated Musk", and still had to look around to be sure. Thanks for teaching me something. EDIT As of an hour after the question was posted: Click the "Grated Musk" link now! This question is now the top ...


18

The spice you are looking for is called Allspice or Piment, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allspice. The Greek name is μπαχάρι, pronounced bakhari.


18

This recipe list chili powder as: 2 tablespoons paprika 2 teaspoons oregano 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder 3/4 teaspoon onion powder 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste (optional) There are other mixtures, but this one seem basic enough. The "heat" comes from the cayenne pepper. The other spices round out the flavor. So I'd mix ...


18

An additional factor is prep time. You can make a large batch of spice mix quickly, spooning tablespoons rather than quarter teaspoons and then it's made ready for many portions. Dry mixes keep as well as unmixed spices so you really can make big batches even if you don't get through it very fast.


17

The amount of salt that would stick to a dry mill is very small. Salt is also quite abrasive, cheap and water soluble. So to get pepper out I'd grind salt. For most savoury mixes a little salt won't hurt -- in fact you may well put a fair bit in the mix. If you really want to remove the salt, then wash it; just be sure to get it really dry before ...


16

When you cook a vegetable, such as a cut up onion, it will release water. The water initially will create an emulsion with the oil in the pan, so you won't see them as clearly separated elements, but the water will also be evaporating. When enough (perhaps all) of the water has dissipated, the emulsion breaks and you see the oil separate from the rest of the ...


16

According to my research, the effect of capsaicin that causes the burning sensation is indirectly responsible for the pleasurable release of endorphins, which are the brain's way of counter-acting the pain sensation. If you don't feel any burn, then you probably haven't consumed enough capsaicin to trigger the endorphin rush. This source from Northwestern ...


16

Lard is the fat of choice in many "el cheapo" canned refried beans, and could be what you are missing.


15

I think it's nutmeg. The author of that blog is from Switzerland, and nutmeg is muscade in French and Muskat in German. It's also something that'd taste fine in the dishes she uses it in.


15

One clove is "the berry part", as you describe it, and the "stem". Use the whole thing.


14

First of all, if you're seasoning tilapia, you'll want to add some oil to it, since tilapia has almost no fat. So, here's the steps: Drizzle oil over the tilapia (both sides). Sprinkle it lightly with the spice mixture, all over Let sit 10-15 minutes. Sprinkle with starch (e.g. flour) at this point if you're frying them. Optionally, you can also add some ...


14

In my book, this is pretty trivial. Wasabi is absolutely a spice - it's something with a very specific flavor, derived from a plant, that can be used in fairly small quantities to add flavor to something. It's not spicy (spicy hot, piquant) in the normal sense, though. It doesn't contain capsaicin. It is hot in some sense: it contains allyl isothiocyanate, ...


14

I don't think it will ever dissolve in an edible solution. However it will readily infuse to both water and alcohol. So instead of trying to retain the cinnamon itself in the solution, just infuse it. Once the flavor has made it's way into the alcohol or water then sieve through a fine mesh. You'd be better off doing this with cinnamon sticks as they are ...


13

It sounds like you're assuming that recipes are scientific creations carefully engineered to achieve a precise result. But most "recipes" are an attempt to relay a rather imprecise series of steps based on available ingredients, familiarity, superstition, and habit in a way that is approximately reproducible by someone else. Even within the bounds of ...


13

The reason it tastes sweet is the presence of sugar, ie because it is sweet. Cinnamon is thin tree bark, and it is not uncommon for tree bark, or the layer near the bark to be sweet because of sap. Birch is another example of a tree that is sweet, you can suck on a peeled birch branch for the same reasons as stated in your question.


13

Assuming you're using spices which are all dried and ground, there should be no problem. In the middle-east, there are always several spice mixtures available in shops. The most famous of which are Ras-al-Hanout and Baharat. These are spice mixtures sold as pre-mixed combinations by the shopkeeper, who is usually the one who grinds the spices.


12

In most instances I've seen, in American cookbooks, "red pepper" refers to cayenne pepper or chili powder (not the spice mix designed for making chili con carne, but dried, ground chilis). It is usually spicy rather than being red bell pepper. Edit to add: I'm talking about this type of product: McCormic Ground red pepper Source


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