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Tag: Kitchen Wisdom

How To: Make a Roux

Roux - Stolen Image (allrecipes.com)

Roux – Stolen Image (allrecipes.com)

I was asked by a member of the extended family circle about a recipe requiring a roux.

So let’s make a “Roux“… Ahh… yeah, right. Sure. Of course. This is french. It’s pronounced ( /ˈr/ ) and this sounds sooo much better than the german Mehlschwitze, which – honestly – sounds more like a sore throat 🙂 .

A roux is used as a basis for things like heavy sauces, soups or stews. It thickens them up and makes them creamy and rich. Since it’s a base-ingredient, it is very versatile and can be used for a wide variety of cooking tasks from the standard french cuisine mother sauce Béchamel up to New Orleans Gumbo. Google “roux usage” and you’ll see what I mean.

Some people find making a roux a little intimidating because, yes, you can absolutely screw it up, but if you follow these simple steps here, I promise you’ll nail it every time. It’s no magic.


Pasta Cooking for Dummies

These are my 5 commandments for cooking italian pasta that I’ve gathered over the last years and that have proven useful. It’s not that hard anyway but not everyone is a routined chef and I would have been happy if I had known some of these seemingly plain tips in the beginning.

These basic steps and fundamentals will hopefully help you nail it as much as they helped me 🙂

If you’re still pondering with pasta to cook, have a look at Jamie Oliver’s pasta shapes guide.


Farcyde’s Personal Pantry Essentials

Neatly ordered and organized for your viewing pleasure!

What do I need to keep in my cabinets and drawers to be “safe” for most situations when I have to feed some people or scratch up something for two “out of nothing”? This is what I always have in stock and refill reliably, just to have it available without having to think about it.

This is my personal roundup, it may lack a lot of stuff that other people deem indispensable, but it’s a list of staples that I think mostly anyone can get along with fairly well. If you like, you can also have a look on what I deem essential kitchen equipment. Read on…


Tips on Cold Smoking

I plan on smoking some meat again shortly, so I find it’s a good idea to gather and sum up my experiences on cold smoking a little. I will not describe the actual processes and mechanisms of smoking foods here, but if you’re interested, read on on wikipedia. It’s worth the time.

There are three types of smoking:

Hot smoking (60 – 110 °C / 140 – 230 °F):
This is what you do in a BBQ smoker. More delicious cooking than actual smoking.

Warm smoking (25 – 60 °C / 77 – 140 °F):
The intermediate thing. Some Proteins begin to denaturate at these temperatures.

Cold smoking (10 – 25 °C / 50 – 77 °F):
The “original” way of smoking, used for centuries to conserve goods. The only method discussed here.


Stir Frying 101- Chinese Stir Fry Techniques

Have a look at this guys cool YouTube Video:

Yes, it is nicely made, it’s informative and yes, I did learn from it… But the actual hammer is this elaborate article that guy wrote on reddit as a complement for the movie. This is downright premium content – if you’re even only slightly interested in asian cooking, this is a must read!


Cooking Rice without a Rice Cooker

I don’t know anymore where this is from. I Did it once and it worked absolutely well. Nonetheless, I have a rice cooker now 😀


Notes on Flour

Stolen from here

(Updated) Stolen from here

Hey! In reaction to my recent post on yeast I’ve been asked “what about flour”? Well, I’m not a baker, I’m not into cake, cookies and pastry – just baking bread from time to time.

So here’s my (very condensed and one-sided) information on flour types that I have learned over the last couple of years, with special focus on the differences / translations between american and german. Good sources for more information are cheatsheet.com and weekendbakery.com.

(Concerning that Image: I’ve actually never heard of “Flour Type 812” here in Germany…)

 

 


Common Slow Cooker Fuck Ups

Ahhh… tonight’s Dinner will be some hearty stew from the Crockpot! To me, my slow cooker is a hassle-free, easy and convenient way to prepare food. It’s really hard to completely ruin a slow cooker meal, it’ll most probably come out at least edible.

However, it’s not completely idiot-proof, so here’s a comprehensive but most certainly uncomplete list of “slow-cooker-don’ts” for information. Some of them are widely available on the internet (for example here) and some of them I’ve experienced by myself, purely and completely on my own 🙂


Notes on Baker’s Yeast

I like baking my own bread from time to time. Recently, I came across some useful information on baker’s yeast that I want to share here:

As you all know, there are two types of yeast being sold in supermarkets – fresh yeast and dry yeast. They’re to be handled a little different each since they come in different forms, but they’re both the same organism (“Saccharomyces cerevisiae” – which derives from its origin from brewing beer). They also both do the same thing: They give your dough fluffiness, airiness and volume by natural fermentation.

Fresh Yeast comes in the form of little cubes, always weighing 42g
Dry Yeast comes as a powdery substance in little packages, always weighing 7g


Private Parts Burning

I was making a new batch of chinese chili oil yesterday. And – since it was an urgent matter – I went to the toilet WITHOUT washing my hands thoroughly before. Thai chili flakes touched by hand and your private parts REALLY don’t mix!!! That shit burns like hell…

Don’t try this at home.


 

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