Wednesday, June 1, 2016
Hen eggs are most commonly found in the West and come in a range of colors from white to light brown, dark brown or speckled dark tan. Hen eggs are great for baking and young children dishes.
Quail eggs are only about ¹/₃ the size of an hen egg and are the smallest of the commercial eggs found in stores and on farms today. Quail eggs have a delicate, light flavor with a creamy texture and dark speckled, pale shells. Often used as an attractive garnish, quail eggs can also be boiled an served on a half shell.
Wednesday, April 27, 2016
There are several different types of stock, here are a few of them I use.
*Simple stock- combine flavoring ingredients with water and simmer for a specific amount of time (cooking times may very according to the type of stock your making). Chicken stock, vegetable stock and fish stock are examples of simple stocks. They are normally used to prepare soups, grains and vegetables. Skim often.
*White stock- a neutral flavored stock made by blanching the bones in water before marrying them with water, vegetables and herbs. The most common whites stocks are made from beef or veal. White stocks are great for adding body to certain dishes without changing the flavor much.
*Seafood stock- made from shrimp and lobster shells, some fish heads or bones. The remainder of the ingredients may include different types of vegetables, herbs and cold water.
*Brown stock- cook on stove top or roast bones and vegetables until deep in color before adding cold water and aromatics. For more flavor and color you may add tomato paste to the bones before roasting and/or you may add a oignon brûlé (burnt onion) for additional flavor and color.
*Fumet- a white stock typically made of lean, white flat fish bones, such as flounder or sole. Cooked gently with vegetable aromatics typically a white mirepoix (onions, celery, parsnips, leeks and mushrooms). For added flavor you may also add a small amount of white wine after the vegetables have been cooked. Cover the pot in order to capture as much flavor as possible, creating a liquid that is not normally as clear as other stocks.
Thursday, April 7, 2016
Gathering and making sure you have the right equipment and ingredients (mise en place) is very important when making a good stock. The size and shape of the pot used to cook the stock plays a major role in assuring that your stock is rich in flavor, full-bodied and have a great color. The stockpot used should hold all of the ingredients and the liquids and still have at least 3 inches of space left over at the top of the pot. Stockpots are always taller than they are wide because the shape helps to create a good stock. The smaller suface area helps to better extract the flavors from the ingredients and it encourages convection by bringing all of the impurities to the top of the stock to be skimmed away more easily.
The best selection of the ingredients determines if you are going to have rich flavorful, full-bodied stock or not. There is nothing like having a delicious stock to flavor soups, stews and sauces.
Friday, April 1, 2016
Sunday, March 27, 2016
⅔ C Extra Virgin Olive Oil
5 Whole Garlic Cloves
5 Sprigs fresh Thyme
1 Tbsp Salt
1 Tbsp fresh Cracked Black Pepper
Once peppers are cooled, remove from pan and place peppers in a bowl. Remove stems, seeds and outer skin from the peppers and discard. Place peppers in a tightly sealed container along with any oil in the bottom of the bowl. Store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
Saturday, March 26, 2016
2 Garlic Cloves (chopped)
4 C Spinach (chiffonade)
2 oz White Wine
1 tsp Salt
½ tsp Black Pepper
6 Soft Flour Tortillas Shells
20 oz Enchilada Sauce (previous recipe)
10 oz Mozzarella Cheese (shredded)
10 oz Cheddar Cheese (shredded)
Bake enchiladas in preheated oven for about 15 to 20 minutes, or until cheese has melted nicely over the enchiladas.
Remove from oven and serve.
Friday, March 25, 2016
1 Red Bell Pepper (medium dice)
1 Yellow Bell Pepper (medium dice)
1 medium Yellow Onion (medium dice)
1 Jalapeño Pepper (small dice)
4 Garlic Cloves (chopped)
3 oz White Wine
1 C Water
1 gl Tomato Sauce (previous recipe)
⅔ C Cumin Powder
⅔ C Chili Powder
¼ C Paprika
⅛ C Garlic Powder
⅛ C Onion Powder
2 Tbsp Salt
1 Tbsp Black Pepper
¼ C Fresh Basil (chopped)
¼ C Green Onions (chopped)
Sauce is ready for use or refrigerated for up to 4 days.
Thursday, March 24, 2016
Wednesday, March 23, 2016
2 Whole Crabs (cooked and cleaned)
1 oz Red Onions (small dice)
4 Green Onions (finely chopped, discard stems)
¼ C Green Bell Peppers (small dice)
¼ C Yellow Bell Peppers (small dice)
¼ C Red Bell Peppers (small dice)
½ C Mayonnaise
2 tsp Salt
1 tsp Black Pepper
½ C Bread Crumbs
½ gl Buttermilk
1 C A-P Flour
1½ C Panko Bread Crumbs
Let crab cakes rest for about 5 to 7 minutes or until they are cool enough to eat, before serving. Serve with a side of remoulade sauce (my choice) or any sauce you would like for dipping.
Sunday, March 13, 2016
Basic Aïoli Recipe
2 Garlic Cloves
1 tsp Dijon Mustard
1 cup Olive Oil
2 tsp Lemon Juice
¹/₂ tsp Salt
TT Ground White Pepper
In a food processor, combine garlic cloves, Dijon mustard and egg, process until mixed for about 10 seconds. With food processor still running, slowly add olive and lemon juice until smooth and creamy. Add salt and pepper, season to taste. Let sit for about 30 minutes and refrigerate immediately.
Saturday, March 12, 2016
Basic Mayonnaise Recipe
3 Egg Yolks
1 fl oz White Wine Vinegar
1 Tbsp Water
2 tsp Mustard
24 fl oz Vegetable Oil
1 tsp Salt
¹/₂ tsp Sugar
¹/₄ tsp Ground White Pepper
1 fl oz Lemon Juice
Whisk egg yolks, vinegar, water, and mustard in a bowl, until slightly foamy. Slowly add oil, constantly whisking, until oil is incorporated and mayonnaise is smooth and creamy. Add salt, sugar, pepper and lemon juice, adjust seasonings to taste. Refrigerate immediately.
Friday, March 11, 2016
Thursday, March 10, 2016
1 large Yellow Onion (medium dice)
1 large Red Pepper (medium dice)
6 Roma Tomatoes (seeded and diced)
5 cloves Garlic (chopped)
2 Tbsp Tomato Paste (previous recipe)
½ C Water
18 oz Tomato Sauce (previous recipe)
1 C Ketchup
1 Tbsp Dark Chili Powder
2 tsp Ground Cumin
1 tsp Salt
1 Black Pepper
1 tsp Sugar
1 tsp Onion Powder
1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
Serve hot over hot dogs, with cheese, onions, mustard and relish.
Wednesday, March 9, 2016
4 oz Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 small Yellow Onion (fine dice)
3 Cloves Garlic (chopped)
⅓ C fresh Basil (finely chopped)
¼ C fresh Oregano (finely chopped)
1 tsp ground Cumin
1 tsp Dark Chili Powder
½ tsp Smoked Paprika
½ tsp Salt
½ tsp Black Pepper
Use the other 2 oz of olive oil to coat the bottom and sides of a 13 × 18 inch baking pan with a timed edge. Spread purée evenly on baking pan and bake for 2½ to 3 hours until most of the liquid has evaporated, turning every 25 to 30 minutes with a spatula, until dark in color. Reduce heat to 250° F and cook for about another 20 minutes until thick and resembling a brick color.
Cool and refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 4 weeks or freeze for up to 6 months in plastic wrap.
Tuesday, March 8, 2016
Chuck Pot Roast
Chuck Eye Roast
Top Loin Steak
Tenderloin Steak (filet mignon)
Tenderloin Steak (filet mignon)
Eye Round Roast
Boneless Rump Roast
Monday, March 7, 2016
Sunday, March 6, 2016
fl oz = fluid ounce
Tbsp = tablespoon
tsp = teaspoon
C = cup
pt = pint
qt = quart
gl = gallon
# or lb = pound
¾ C = 12 Tbsp
⅔ C = 10 Tbsp
½ C = 8 Tbsp
⅓ C = 5 Tbsp
¼ C = 4 Tbsp
⅛ C = 2 Tbsp
1 Tbsp = 3 tsp
½ Tbsp = 1½ tsp
1 qt = 2 pts = 32 fl oz
1 pt = 2 C = 16 fl oz
1 C = 16 Tbsp = 8 fl oz
1 Tbsp = 3 tsp = ½ fl oz
¾# = 12 oz
½# = 8 oz
¼# = 4 oz
Saturday, March 5, 2016
½ C Smoked Paprika
¼ C Cayenne Pepper
¼ C Onion Powder
3 Tbsp Garlic Powder
3 Tbsp fresh Ground Black Pepper
2 Tbsp White Pepper
1 Tbsp dried Basil
1 Tbsp Dark Chili Powder
2 tsp Dry Mustard
1 tsp Ground Bay Leaves
1 tsp Filé Powder
½ tsp Ground Cloves
1 tsp Ground Thyme
½ tsp dried Rosemary
½ tsp Ground Ginger
½ tsp Cumin Powder
¼ tsp Ground Allspice
Friday, March 4, 2016
Hard woods such as, hickory, maple, pecan wood has a very specific flavor and are common for smoking. Softwoods such as pine, spruce an evergreen wood should never be used, they produce a very resinous and bitter flavor.
Smoking meats requires indirect heat whereas the fire and meat are in separate chambers, cooked between 225°F and 250°F, to produce a smokey flavor. Barbecued meats are more charred flavor where direct heat is used, placing the meats over an open flame and maintaining a temperature between 300°F and 350°F.
The seasoning of the meat varies depending on the region it is cooked in and the cook that prepares the barbecue. The most common types of seasoning for barbecue are dry rubs (containing no moisture), wet rubs (containing just enough moisture to make a paste) and marinades (containing oil, acid and seasonings). Styles of barbecue in the United States are Carolina style (where a whole hog or pork shoulder is cooked enough to pull the meat apart and served on bread), Memphis style (ribs, that's all I need to say), Texas style (beef is introduced, preferably brisket) and Kansas City style (where a thick, tomatoey style barbecue sauce is used. There are other places where barbecue is prepared differently, such as Hawaii and Jamaica, those are just the most common.
Whether you call it barbecue, barbeque, BBQ or bar be que, it is still one of the most enjoyed methods of cooking around the world. Having a barbecue is best ways to get together family and friends, meet new people, and/or even develop marriages.
Thursday, March 3, 2016
Steps for sautéing:
1. Heat the pan over medium-high heat, then add the oil (allow the pan to get very hot to ensure you get a great caramelized color)
2. Season and flour, if using meat.
3. Carefully add food to the pan (sear the presentation side first to give it a proper amount of time to develop an even golden brown color)
4. Carefully turn item so that the fat doesn't splash.
5. Check temperature (remember the food will need a few minutes for the carryover temperature to finish cooking the food).
6. When food is done, carefully remove from pan (place on a paper towel to soak up access fat from cooking).
7. Deglaze pan with wine, stock or broth and make the sauce
Don't confuse sautéing with pan frying, the amount of oil used plays an important role in how the food turns out.
Wednesday, March 2, 2016
Steps for roasting:
1. Pre-heat oven to desired temperature for roasting your specific food.
2. If you are cooking a roast, sear it first to lock in the juices before roasting.
3. Roast foods uncovered (leaving it uncovered will help the food to develop a good texture).
4. Use a thermometer to check if the food is ready (if so remove from the oven, if not continue roasting until done.
5. Carefully remove from oven and let the food rest for about 10 to 15 minutes (resting allows carryover cooking and even distribution of the juices).
7. Deglaze pan with stock, wine or broth to prepare the sauce.
Be careful not to get roasting confused with baking. Baking is a technique used when referring to baked goods such as bread, cakes and pies.
Tuesday, March 1, 2016
Before deep frying you should trim the food and cut into uniform pieces for even frying and season food before applying the breading, flour or batter. Be careful while using this technique as hot oil may pop when certain foods are place in the oil. Note, this is a quick cooking method for certain foods, so different foods frying times may vary.
Steps for deep frying:
1. Bring oil to desired temperature (usually between 325°F and 375°F, depending on what foods are being fried).
2. Apply breading or coating to food.
3. Carefully place food into oil and cook until food is done.
4. Carefully remove food from fryer (place on a paper towel to absorb the access oil)
5. Check the temperature and quality of the food
6. Serve immediately (be very careful when eating foods right out of the oil, may be extremely hot)
Monday, February 29, 2016
Steps for braising and stewing:
1. Preheat pan and oil
2. Sear meats on all sides (to lock in flavor and add flavor to the cooking liquid)
3. Remove seared meat from pan and add aromatics.
4. Add a small amount of the cooking liquid (stock or brown sauce) to deglaze the pan.
5. Add the appropriate amount of liquid to the pan (covering about ²/₃ of the protein)
6. Cover with lid and finish braising.
Sunday, February 28, 2016
Steps for poaching:
1. Heat liquid to a full boil, than reduce heat slightly (between 160°F and 185°F)
2. Carefully add food to the liquid and return to correct temperature (adding the food to the liquid will reduce the temperature of the poaching liquid)
3. Maintain the temperature of the liquid, skimming the top as necessary (careful not to boil the liquid as the food may begin to break up)
4. Cook food until properly done, then carefully remove food from the liquid (to stop the cooking process remove food from the liquid and place on a cooling rack, careful not make food fall apart)
5. Evaluate food and serve
Careful not to confuse with Shallow-Poaching, where the food is not completely submerged. The food is covered halfway by liquid and the top is cooked by steam. Shallow-poaching is normally done with a cartouche (a parchment paper lid), to trap in the steam and cook evenly.
Saturday, February 27, 2016
1. Heat the pan and the oil (always use fresh oil with a high smoke point such as olive oil or animal fat).
2. Season and batter the protein (coat with seasoned flour, egg wash and then breadcrumbs).
3. Test the oil (try placing a corner of the breaded protein in the oil, when oil reaches 350° F it will bubble around the food and begin to brown)
4. Carefully place protein in hot oil (cook until it browns and forms a beautiful crust)
5. Carefully turn food (cook until food has reached a desired temperature and is equally browned and crusted on both sides)
6. Remove food from pan (place on a paper towel to absorb the access oil)
7. Serve immediately
Friday, February 26, 2016
Thursday, February 25, 2016
1 large Yellow Onions (medium dice)
2 stalks Celery (medium dice)
1 medium Bell Pepper (medium dice)
4 cloves Garlic (minced)
1# Crawfish Tail Meat
2½ tsp Spice Blend (previous recipe)
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Black Pepper
½ tsp White Pepper
1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
1 tsp Hot Sauce
2 oz A-P Flour
1½ C Seafood Stock (previous recipe)
⅔ C Green Onions (chopped)
¼ C fresh Parsley (roughly chopped)
2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
4 oz Butter
Cook, stirring constantly for about 4 minutes, then slowly add stock a little at a time, stirring to incorporate.
Let dish cook for about 20 minutes, over medium-low heat, stirring often to prevent sticking. Add green onions, parsley, lemon juice and butter, stir well for another 3 minutes. Remove from heat and adjust seasoning with spice blend. Serve hot, with cooked white rice.
Wednesday, February 24, 2016
Black peppercorns have the most pungent and rich flavor of all. They are green peppercorn that have been dried from weeks until they turn black and wrinkled.
White peppercorns have a less earthy, pungent and rich than the black peppercorns. They are black peppercorns with the husks removed and is used to flavor light colored sauces without changing the color.
Green peppercorns are fresher than the others with a lighter more delicate flavor. They ate normally pickled in a brine or vinegar and jarred or canned and sometimes freeze-dried.
Pink peppercorns are often available in a brine or dried (my choice), they have a mild, sweet aromatic flavor.
A mix of all four of these Peppercorns creates a fresh peppery flavor for any dish, mainly delicate fish dishes.
Tuesday, February 23, 2016
There are many different varieties of salt:
Standard table salt with iodine or starch added to prevent clumping.
An additive - free salt with a wonderful flavor and texture. Kosher salt has larger crystals with a jagged shape.
A fine-grained, additive - free used to prepare pickles and sauerkraut.
A grey is colored salt with very large crystals that is very rarely used in cooking. Mainly used to make ice melt faster in older model ice cream makers.
A fresh flavored salt available fine- or course - grained that is mainly used by chefs for its pure flavor.
A highly refined, fine-grained salt that contains additives to make it flow freely when poured.
Monday, February 22, 2016
In the Spanish culture the peppers are first smoked, then dried calling it Smoked Paprika (one of my favorite spices). Paprika is very
Store paprika in a cool, dark place, in an air tight container. If it begins to turn brown and loses its smell and flavor, then it's time to replace it.
Sunday, February 21, 2016
Equipment Used in the Kitchen
Pots and Pans
Then you have slicers, blenders, mixers, food processors, grinders. These tools are much needed also, some of them you can get by without using, but it will make you smile to have them.
A chef should be able to choose the right tool, in order to produce high quality foods. With that being said, a chef should also know how to properly clean and maintain their tools. You should know your tools and how the quality of your tools can either make or break your dish.
Saturday, February 20, 2016
Friday, February 19, 2016
Thursday, February 18, 2016
Wednesday, February 17, 2016
Tuesday, February 16, 2016
Monday, February 15, 2016
Sunday, February 14, 2016
Soft and Rind-ripened Cheeses
Hard and Cheddar-type Cheeses
Saturday, February 13, 2016
Peppermint being the second most popular form of mint with longer, darker leaves and a stronger flavor is a cross between spearmint and water mint. Peppermint oil is a very popular ingredient in toothpastes, chewing gums, sweets and aftershave. It is also considered to be an effective decongestant and antiseptic agent. Apple mint is also a popular form of mint, just not as popular as spearmint and peppermint, with softer green leaves and a more subtle fruitier flavor. Lemon and pineapple mint also have a soft, fruity flavor and is good for making summertime beverages.
Friday, February 12, 2016
The spice coriander seed or ground coriander comes from the seed of the plant. Coriander is a relative of the carrot family, with a sweet, musky flavor. Coriander is a great spice for gingerbread, cookies, cakes, biscuits, stuffing, pork dishes, and cheese dishes.
Thursday, February 11, 2016
It is easily deserved to be on or our most popular herbs today. Tarragon was also thought to be an aid against flatulence.
Wednesday, February 10, 2016
During the medieval times sage was used for treatment of colds, fever, epilepsy and constipation. It was also used by country folk to make sage wine and tea, cheese flavoring and in sage tobacco. People also used it as a mouthwash, a hair tonic and for teeth whitening.
Tuesday, February 9, 2016
Monday, February 8, 2016
Sunday, February 7, 2016
A delicious aromatic Mediterranean herb that grows wild and best on Rocky ground. It has small greyish-green leaves with purple flowers. It's aromatic leaves have antiseptic properties cultivated and used by the ancient Egyptians in oil form for embalming, perfume baths and the purification of rooms as well as its culinary usefulness. There are a number of varieties of thyme (around 28) including Lemon thyme, English thyme and silver thyme.
Thyme is one the most commonly used kitchen herbs particularly used in soups, stews and stocks, adding a earthy, sweet pungent flavor. Thyme is mainly used in the French cuisine as the key ingredient of bouquets garni and herbes de providence. It pairs very well with Mediterranean vegetables like tomatoes, bell peppers, zucchini and eggplant. It is widely used in marinades for beed, pork, lamb, game and baked fish.
Saturday, February 6, 2016
Makes a beautiful garnish.
Friday, February 5, 2016
It is most commonly used as the main ingredient in Pesto:
4 C Basil (tightly packed)
5 Garlic Cloves
⅓ C Pine Nuts
⅔ C Parmesan Cheese
¼ tsp Salt
⅛ tsp Black Pepper
⅔ C Olive Oil
Thursday, February 4, 2016
Not only does basil make a great, so does parsley.
3 Roasted Garlic Cloves
3 Green Olives (pitted)
½ Cup Walnuts (shells removed)
½ Cup Parmesan Cheese (grated)
2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
½ Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Wednesday, February 3, 2016
Tuesday, February 2, 2016
Rosemary adds a great flavor to lamb, pork, chicken and salmon as well as several soups and sauces. A native of the Mediterranean region, rosemary grows wild on dry shrub and is cultivated all year round.
Monday, February 1, 2016
Types of Knives Used in the Kitchen
Also known as the cook's knife or a French knife, this all-purpose knife is used for a number of reasons. This is possibly the most important knife you can own, as a chef or cook. Normally has an 8 to 12 inch blade, used for a variety of chopping, slicing, and mincing. Some blades come as small as 6 inches long. 8 inch is the most common used chef's knife.
This short multi-purpose kitchen knife, is necessity thatevery kitchen should have. Perfect for paring and trimming small fruits and vegetables. With a blade length of 2 to 4 inches, this knife comes in a few different varieties such as, the
tourné knife, bird's beak, trimming knife, and fluting knife.
This knife is like smaller, lighter version of a chef's knife and a larger, heavier version of a paring knife. With this knife being 4 to 8 inches long, it is normally excluded from a lot of kitchen usage. It's basically too short to do a chef's knife job and too long to do a paring knife job. Not always needed, but a very good tool to have.
Now, this knife has a serrated edge, designed to slice through soft breads without crushing it. Not much to say about this knife except, be careful while using. With a 6 to 10 inch serrated blade it is also great for cutting certain fruits and vegetables. This is also a must have knife in your kitchen.
Also known as the fish knife (one of my favourites), this knife is great for filleting fish. With it's flexible 6 to 11 inch blade, this knife is great for moving along the backbone or underneath the skin of a fish.
This is just a few very important knives that can do just about any cutting job in your kitchen. As you continue to cook and work more in the kitchen, you will accumulate more interesting and different knives. There are several different varieties and sizes of knives out there, my favorite is the Santoku knife.