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Food Talk
Do you like food? If so, you came to the right off-topic section. Discuss your favorite food topics here!

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Old 09-22-2011, 07:33 PM   #1
Goughie
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Little hints and tips?

What little hints and tips do you have that just pep up a dish that little bit more? Can be really simple like this:

Add Tabasco to your eggs when making scrambled eggs - yum!
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Old 09-22-2011, 07:43 PM   #2
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Cooking with alcohol, adding ground chiles, worcestershire sauce is also a very under-used seasoning.

Making things in a non-traditional way is also something that keeps people on their toes.

Oh, and the obvious... Bacon. Add it to everything.
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Old 09-22-2011, 08:47 PM   #3
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A little garlic powder never hurt anything
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Old 09-22-2011, 08:52 PM   #4
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I use garlic powder, onion powder, Nature's Seasoning, and crushed red pepper on almost everything before I cook it.
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Old 09-23-2011, 04:23 AM   #5
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MSG makes all asian dishes taste better.
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Old 09-23-2011, 10:04 AM   #6
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its all about that hotshot seasoning

i love sesame oil too. i add it in my ramen and it taste so good
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Old 09-24-2011, 01:06 PM   #7
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Add worcestshire to tuna salad along with some hot sauce to your regular tuna salad ingredients
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Old 09-24-2011, 08:56 PM   #8
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Last edited by accolade; 09-24-2011 at 08:57 PM.
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Old 09-25-2011, 07:16 PM   #9
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I typically get a relatively traditional dish and and one component to it to stir things up a bit

Basil puree mixed in with mashed potatoes

Sweet mashed casserole, and some mashed roasted bananas

Tomato sauce, always add a cup of red wine, always wait until the end to season with additional salt... the more I cooks down, the more flavor, adding too much salt at the beginning might screw in the end

Be VERY aware of temperature control... you'd be surprised how many things cook better with less heat rather than torching the f out of whatever is on the stove

Cook bacon low and slow and you will be rewarded

Know your oils and their smoke points

Always let meat rest 5 or so minutes before you serve, slice, etc.. season liberally 10 min before cooking, room temp meat is a must, so leave it out for an hour before cooking

Be conscious of textures in a dish.... for example, I made pan seared scallops on little "islands" of a sweet potato leek puree. For added texture and a little refreshing addition, I added very thinly juliened slices of red and green apple tossed in a little lemon juice on top of each scallop, something so simple and subtle took that dish to a whole other level
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Old 09-25-2011, 07:28 PM   #10
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crushed red pepper. use it one everything
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Old 09-25-2011, 07:53 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by accolade View Post
Cooking with alcohol, adding ground chiles, worcestershire sauce is also a very under-used seasoning.

Making things in a non-traditional way is also something that keeps people on their toes.

Oh, and the obvious... Bacon. Add it to everything.
big fvcking on the alcohol and ground chiles... i'll give the worcestershire sauce a go as well...

i typically use a few dashes of liquid smoke from time to time
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Old 09-27-2011, 01:07 PM   #12
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Mix a healthy splash of basalmic vinegar into your ground beef if you're making burgers - add some crushed garlic and salt and pepper, too.

Mustard makes an excellent marinade for beef - especially roasts and ribs. Mix up equal parts butter and dijon mustard and slather it on the meat, then let it sit overnight uncovered in the fridge so that it dries out a bit. Will give meat a bit of zing and a lot of flavor, but will NOT taste much like mustard. People won't taste mustard unless you tell them. (I've heard that Brits traditionally use lots of mustard in cooking, so Goughie probably knows that . . but using tons of mustard in cooking is a strange concept in the US)

Buy crushed red chilis in bulk at the asian store and use it with everything.

Cook beef roasts at 250 degrees until you hit an internal temp of 130 degrees, then remove, cover and wait an hour. Perfect medium rare beef throughout without the medium/well edges that you get at higher temps. Same with cooking ribs or other slow cook items - lower temps are better.

In almost any dish that involves chopped meat and/or veggies, if you cut the meat and veggies into extra small pieces, the dish will taste better.

Buying (and using) an instant-read thermometer like this: http://www.thermoworks.com/products/thermapen/ will make you a better cook, guaranteed.

Brining meat will flavor it and keep it from drying out. Wonder how good restaurants are able to perfectly cook pork chops and chicken breasts without them turning into those hard dried out pieces of meat you make at home? They brine their meat. Mix 1/2 cup of kosher salt with 1/2 gallon of water, then add seasoning, like pepper, bay leaves, garlic, chilis, etc. Soak your meat for 2-3 hours for chops to 12-24 hours for tenderloins and whole birds. Osmosis will cause the the salt and spices to be drawn into the meat. The meat will now retain moisture when cooking, so it won't dry out and it will be seasoned throughout.
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Old 09-27-2011, 05:09 PM   #13
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(I've heard that Brits traditionally use lots of mustard in cooking, so Goughie probably knows that . . but using tons of mustard in cooking is a strange concept in the US)
Yep, but we don't use the ***** French mustard - we use the hot English stuff!
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Old 12-07-2011, 11:26 PM   #14
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I know this is late, but just have to add this...
I've been a chef for 30 years and do not subscribe to brining meat. Brining is a type of curing not cooking. I know a lot of people and chefs are into it but I am not.
It's like deep fried turkey, why do it? You could deep fry pig sh*t and it would taste good, just add some ranch dressing!
The best restaurants don't do it, some restaurants do but the good restaurants keep it simple, natural and healthy.
Brining leaches out the natural juices and replaces it with salt. Yes, Salt does add flavor but you can always add salt later if needed.
Dry meat is overcooked, learn to cook the meat, and fish properly and you will appreciate the natural flavors more.
Buy Free Range or Natural Poultry because it tastes like Poultry should.
I do prefer corn-fed beef over grass-fed though.

My helpful hint: Boiling eggs and want to know if they're done without cracking them?
Pull one out, place the fatter end down and try to twirl it like a top.
If it spins upright, without wobbbling, it is done.
If it wobbles or falls over and won't spin, it is not done, put it back in.
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Old 12-08-2011, 04:55 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by BDK-ZHP View Post
I know this is late, but just have to add this...
I've been a chef for 30 years and do not subscribe to brining meat. Brining is a type of curing not cooking. I know a lot of people and chefs are into it but I am not.
It's like deep fried turkey, why do it? You could deep fry pig sh*t and it would taste good, just add some ranch dressing!
The best restaurants don't do it, some restaurants do but the good restaurants keep it simple, natural and healthy.
Brining leaches out the natural juices and replaces it with salt. Yes, Salt does add flavor but you can always add salt later if needed.
Dry meat is overcooked, learn to cook the meat, and fish properly and you will appreciate the natural flavors more.
Buy Free Range or Natural Poultry because it tastes like Poultry should.
I do prefer corn-fed beef over grass-fed though.

My helpful hint: Boiling eggs and want to know if they're done without cracking them?
Pull one out, place the fatter end down and try to twirl it like a top.
If it spins upright, without wobbbling, it is done.
If it wobbles or falls over and won't spin, it is not done, put it back in.
Brining does not leach out the natural juices. Osmosis causes the meat to pull salt in in order to balance the salinity of the meat with the salinity of the water. As a result, meat will retain more natural juices during cooking.

Deep fried turkey is awesome. It stays moist and juicy - leftovers will stay moist longer in the fridge.

And as the son of a chicken farmer, I can say that "free range" means nothing. The vast majority of free range chickens are raised 100% indoors and never see the light of day. "Free range" technically means that the chickens have access to the outdoors, which means that their indoor cages have passageways to outdoor cages . . . however they are only fed in their indoor cages so they never actually bother to go outside.
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Old 12-08-2011, 05:01 PM   #16
JJR4884
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BDK-ZHP View Post
I know this is late, but just have to add this...
I've been a chef for 30 years and do not subscribe to brining meat. Brining is a type of curing not cooking. I know a lot of people and chefs are into it but I am not.
It's like deep fried turkey, why do it? You could deep fry pig sh*t and it would taste good, just add some ranch dressing!
The best restaurants don't do it, some restaurants do but the good restaurants keep it simple, natural and healthy.
Brining leaches out the natural juices and replaces it with salt. Yes, Salt does add flavor but you can always add salt later if needed.
Dry meat is overcooked, learn to cook the meat, and fish properly and you will appreciate the natural flavors more.
Buy Free Range or Natural Poultry because it tastes like Poultry should.
I do prefer corn-fed beef over grass-fed though.

My helpful hint: Boiling eggs and want to know if they're done without cracking them?
Pull one out, place the fatter end down and try to twirl it like a top.
If it spins upright, without wobbbling, it is done.
If it wobbles or falls over and won't spin, it is not done, put it back in.

so where are you a chef?
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Old 12-10-2011, 09:58 AM   #17
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adding milk/cheese/bouillon to scrambled eggs makes it taste a lot better

i like mixing sriracha with cream-based soups (e.g. clam chowder); gives it a nice kick

bacon on everything
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Old 12-10-2011, 11:17 AM   #18
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The only way I make toast....

I know what you're thinking. Toast? Put it in the toaster, apply butter, done. Right? That will surely make toast for sure... if you like some less than interesting toast.

In a small skillet melt as much butter (not margarine. that stuff is plastic. throw that crap away.) you would normally apply to a side of bread.
Slap your bread in the skillet and set the heat to a little less than medium.
Apply a little butter to the top side of the bread and allow to soften.
Spread the soft butter evenly across the top of the bread.
Flip the toast to cook the other side.
Allow to cook for approximately the same amount of time.
Vuala! You have some awesome toast.

Bonus points:
At this point I use the same skillet to over easy a couple eggs that will be placed upon that toast.
Top that with some shredded cheese and a splash of Sriracha and some Jane's Crazy Mixed up Salt.
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Old 12-10-2011, 11:34 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by joeski3d View Post
The only way I make toast....

I know what you're thinking. Toast? Put it in the toaster, apply butter, done. Right? That will surely make toast for sure... if you like some less than interesting toast.

In a small skillet melt as much butter (not margarine. that stuff is plastic. throw that crap away.) you would normally apply to a side of bread.
Slap your bread in the skillet and set the heat to a little less than medium.
Apply a little butter to the top side of the bread and allow to soften.
Spread the soft butter evenly across the top of the bread.
Flip the toast to cook the other side.
Allow to cook for approximately the same amount of time.
Vuala! You have some awesome toast.

Bonus points:
At this point I use the same skillet to over easy a couple eggs that will be placed upon that toast.
Top that with some shredded cheese and a splash of Sriracha and some Jane's Crazy Mixed up Salt.
That's a great idea. I know what breakfast tomorrow is going to be...
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Old 12-10-2011, 11:40 AM   #20
evolved
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joeski3d View Post
The only way I make toast....

I know what you're thinking. Toast? Put it in the toaster, apply butter, done. Right? That will surely make toast for sure... if you like some less than interesting toast.

In a small skillet melt as much butter (not margarine. that stuff is plastic. throw that crap away.) you would normally apply to a side of bread.
Slap your bread in the skillet and set the heat to a little less than medium.
Apply a little butter to the top side of the bread and allow to soften.
Spread the soft butter evenly across the top of the bread.
Flip the toast to cook the other side.
Allow to cook for approximately the same amount of time.
Vuala! You have some awesome toast.

Bonus points:
At this point I use the same skillet to over easy a couple eggs that will be placed upon that toast.
Top that with some shredded cheese and a splash of Sriracha and some Jane's Crazy Mixed up Salt.
Um, I'm making this right now, brb.

Edit: It was focking awesome.

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Last edited by evolved; 12-10-2011 at 12:33 PM.
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