My oven is bipolar: when I follow the instructions for frozen pizza, it's done in about 66% of the time, i.e. instructions say 18min, it's done in 12, usually less - 18min would burn it to a crisp. Thicker things, like pork roasts or heating a pre-cooked ham, are barely tepid in the center at the time in their instructions, i.e. instructions say 45min, takes over an hour to get to the recommended temperature. The oven is a generic, in-every-apartment-I've-ever-had kind of stove. What's it's problem? [more inside]
I have about 1/4+ cup of sourdough starter to use up. Tell me what I can make that I can eat today. [more inside]
I have made a lovely bolognaise. I think it would be even lovelier with parmesan. If I buy some parmesan I won't use up the whole wedge. Is there anything interesting I could use the leftover parmesan for? Or alternatively, something other than parmesan that is dynamite on a bolognaise sauce. [more inside]
Where can I get plain (par-cooked) ramen noodles in NYC? I'm talking about frozen/refrigerated, not dried. I work in Midtown, so I'm near some Japanese groceries, but all I've seen are frozen packages that include soup- is there a better option than buying those and throwing out the broth? Also, are there particular brands to look out for?
It just occurred to me that the reaction that makes key lime pie doesn't actually depend on citrus, just on acidity. This means, hypothetically, one could make this kind of pie filling with things more interesting than lime or lemon juice. I need a sanity check on this idea, and some suggestions of delicious low-pH liquids. [more inside]
So I've got a two-pound tenderloin defrosting in my fridge, and I'd like to make pulled pork out of it. I've never made pulled pork at all, but I understand it generally calls for pork shoulder, so I feel like I need some extra-special hand-holding to help me figure out how to make it work with a totally different cut of meat. [more inside]
I'm cooking this recipe and it calls for one 7-oz can of fire roasted chilis. Can I substitute a NM dried red pepper? I also have crushed red pepper, but I'm not sure if either would be a good option.
My fridge is starting to bulge open with the sheer amount of produce I'm accumulating from my weekly farm box. Please help me come up with ideas to use some of it! Seeking ideas specifically for 1) beets 2) zucchini/summer squash and 3) fennel (possibly looking for help modifying a potato gratin recipe). More inside! [more inside]
I am planning to cook Hugh Fearfuller-Whittingstall's Donnie Brasco pork shoulder to be served tomorrow evening. [more inside]
So I can actually cook, and pretty well. It's the rest of the logistics of getting food on the table (meal planning, figuring out how to make balanced meals, even grocery shopping) that I struggle with. I need help learning to feed myself better than the frozen foods aisle can! [more inside]
I have two packages of ground lamb that I bought for making some spicy lamb burgers. I got them on Saturday, and the sale by date is for the 21st. I pulled them from the meat drawer just now and the plastic wrap sealing the top of each tray of lamb was very taut and bulging. I pierced the wraps and a really foul smell came from each package. The problem is- the lamb is still a healthy looking bright red and it is not past the freshness date. The meat does have an odor, but not as strong as the air that escaped the package at first. Would you go ahead and cook it up or toss it?
We have a container of this Miso paste at the back of our fridge, but it's straight shiro rather than shiro + aka. The ingredients are water, soybeans, rice, salt - 2% alcohol by volume. It looks fine and smells great, and the texture seems normal, maybe a little dried out. There's a "best before" date of 30 June 2013, but no "expiry" date. Is there any reason I shouldn't use this to baste roasted vegetables? [more inside]
Help me support my teen daughter with her health efforts... [more inside]
It’s been a stressful year thus far and I really need to get away for a few days, but alas, none of my friends are available for a trip right now. I’d love to go somewhere in mid/late August. I have a bunch of requirements, of course! [more inside]
We're closing on a house that has a very nice and spacious kitchen. What are we missing to make it Chris Kimball approved? [more inside]
I just got one of those round glass tabletop convection ovens. Now what? [more inside]
My family will be vacationing with another on a houseboat. Total of 4 adults and 5 kids, all good eaters (but the kids are kids, too). We are trying to optimize our food and seeking wisdom from those with experience. [more inside]
Give me your crunchy, your cool, your refreshing flavors yearning to breathe free. Favorite dinner salad recipes and ideas, please? [more inside]
What are basic pieces of kitchen science that would be helpful for me to know? I'm most interested in baking but cooking is okay too. Things like the effect of salt or liquid on a recipe or whether I want my bread dough to rise in a dry or humid area and why would be really great. I'm okay at following recipes but I'd absolutely love to know why different ingredients and combinations have different effects and how I can use that to my advantage. [more inside]
What can I do with common and grey morels?
I am going to a cabin in Maine for the summer. When I am in this cabin I like to spend many hours cooking and fussing over meals. The fussier the better. Problem: there is no oven. What are your best ovenless recipes suitable for two people in the middle of nowhere with lots of time on thier hands? [more inside]
Recently I've been buying Trader Joe's marinaded chicken tenders, and using the bag throughout the week to prepare stir-fries, fajitas, and other simple dishes for dinner. I really like having a marinade I can pull from for a quick meal, but I'm getting tired of the flavors that Trader Joe's offers. What are your favorite chicken marinades that I could start at the beginning of the week and use throughout the week to make dinner? My taste is pretty wide, but I'd prefer stuff that uses fairly common ingredients.
I have bought the most expensive, most organic and local and mollycoddled pork chops in my life. I do not want to waste this experience. Please tell me how to make the perfect pan-fried pork chop in agonizing detail. I own cast iron pans and I'm going to serve it with asparagus - that's the only limitation. Otherwise anything goes. Teach me the wisdom of Pork Chopery.
Cooking for a group of 12 foodies whilst on vacation, three of whom are strict vegetarians. The other 9 people have expressed the desire not to eat vegetarian food all week. So I'm looking for entree recipes that A: can have meat added on separately at the end, but are also satisfying sans meat B: are easy to make for a large group aka not very time-intensive/time-sensitive/complicated and C: are super-duper tasty. Unimaginative casseroles aren't going to cut it, here. Difficulty: no appliances available other than stove and a BBQ.
I have 6 free hours. Give me your most labour intensive yet ultimately compelling/yummy recipes. [caveat: I have access to all ingredients] [more inside]
After stumbling across the blog Georgian Recipes (and specifically this recipe for Acharuli - Ajarian Khachapuri) I realized I've got a lot of eating to catch up on. If you know about Georgian food, please give me your tips, tricks, substitutions for hard to find ingredients, ingredients that should never be substituted, links to your favorite Georgian recipes, and basically everything you think I should know about it. [more inside]
I'm organizing a bake sale that will take place in a record store; we'll be selling baked goods while a couple different bands perform. It's a benefit for an all-ages nonprofit performance space, so the crowd is going to be more "denim vests and cheap beer" than "PTA fundraiser cake walk." I'd like suggestions for recipes that don't require me to buy an ingredient that I'm only going to use a small portion of, are fairly simple to make, and easy to make into sturdy single servings that don't require plates or forks. Bonus questions: vegan suggestions, jello shots, and savory items. [more inside]
The other day, I was at a restaurant where the chef cooks the food directly in front of customers. I realized that by watching her, I was able to observe certain things that I don't normally glean from recipes and cooking videos. I could see not only the techniques she used to cook the food, but also how she organized herself to make the process so efficient. This got me thinking of how I can organize my cooking for maximal efficiency, especially when preparing food for groups: [more inside]
Over the past 6-8 months, I've fallen into a lot of bad habits that affect how I feel in my body. I want to improve, but there is so much that needs improving that I'm not sure where or how to start, and I don't have a lot of motivation. How do I begin to turn things around? [more inside]
I've got a 9lb / 4kg pork leg which was set to cook at 225F /110C for around 14 hours (based on guidelines of 1.5 - 2 hours per pound). I discovered the temperature was wrong and now I'm not sure the best way to recover the situation. [more inside]
The wife and I got a gas grill a while back, but have procrastinated with actually starting to use it, since we'd like to learn to use it properly first. What are the best grilling resources you know? [more inside]
I am having some friends over to my house for chill night of catching up and watching movies. I very rarely socialize in my home, so I am somewhat clueless about hosting people. There will be four of us, and one person is breastfeeding so no alcohol for her. I am thinking about daiquiris since they are delicious and can easily be made with no alcohol. But I am stumped for food. [more inside]
I accidentally cooked pearl barley instead of brown rice in the rice cooker. What can I do with three cups of cooked barley?
We have two delicious 17 lb. direct-from-the-farm country hams to do up for our wedding in June, and are seeking advice on best ways to prepare them. Hams are frozen, cured, with hocks already taken out, and with the rind left on. Suggestions? Tips? Tricks? Glazing options?
I'm going to be making Rillettes following Anthony Bourdain's Les Halles cookbook recipe and everything is great except that I'm confused by one of the last instructions. It says to "Top each portion with a slice of two of pork fat to completely cover it, fold the mixture together a bit then . . .". That's the part that's confusing me. Am I supposed to use raw pork fat just cut into thin strips? What does it mean to cover and then fold the mixture? I'm just having a hard time visualizing that that means for me to do.
So I just ran across this recipe in an older cookbook (the 1962 edition of Better Homes & Gardens); it's for stewed chicken, and specifies different cooking times for chicken and "bro-hens" --- it was printed just like that, with quotes marks and a hyphen: "bro-hens". What in the name of Betty Crocker is a "bro-hen"?!? Is it just another term for a capon, perhaps? Because I've gotta tell ya, I've been cooking for over half a century now, plus I spent several years living next door to a chicken farm, and I've never heard of "bro-hens"!
I'm at the point in life where I can start affording some small luxuries, and one of my longstanding dreams has been to have the ability to cook restaurant quality steak and stir-fries indoor in my home kitchen via a proper commercial grilltop. What do I need to get, and who should I talk to? Has anyone ever done this before? [more inside]
Seeking ideas for stunning desserts. Please share with me your tried and tested recipes that impress! [more inside]
Is it safe to heat water on the stove with an enameled cast iron teapot? [more inside]
15 of us are planning our annual weekend trip in a few weeks. I'm responsible for menu planning. We have a variety of different dietary restrictions, and I'm looking for ideas for great meals that can feed these people. [more inside]
I'm new to cooking with cast-iron, and recently bought this Lodge pan. After the first use (scrambled eggs), I scrubbed it gently with warm water (no soap). I then coated it with vegetable shortening (this brand, which says it has a smoke point of 450°F), and placed it in the oven at 400°F. After about 15 min., I noticed smoke coming out (and smelled somthing burning), so I lowered the temp to 350°F, and left the pan in the oven for an hour. Now that the pan has cooled off, it has a very sticky residue. Is this normal?
Late last year a few friends and I started an informal bartering club. My contribution is baked goods, usually bread of some kind, but as the first heatwave of the season kicked in I realized I’m going to need an alternative to oven baking. Cooks and bakers of MeFi, hope me some bready recipes that I can make during red flag season. [more inside]
The first salsa I ever had was delicious. Chopped fresh tomatoes, lots of coriander/cilantro. I was introduced to it in Petaluma in 1990. A plastic tub. It may have had a picture of a parrot on the top. I'm not sure if I bought it (regularly) at the Safeway or the organic/health food store. Do you remember this salsa? Have you re-created it? Know a close approximation? Please share.
I was an idiot and added liquid that wasn't warm enough to my Le Creuset stoneware roasting dish. It now has a hairline crack in the glaze. Can it be saved? I can't really afford to replace it.
I was making yogurt, but forgot that I was doing it. Instead of heating the milk to 180, I heated it to boiling. And then...left it there for a while. I have almost a gallon of freshly boiled milk, and can't stand to throw it away. What on earth can I do with it? [more inside]
A local Chinese restaurant makes the best tom yum vegetable soup I've ever tasted. I'd like to make it at home, but I don't have the recipe. [more inside]
Looking for a new range cooker for our dream kitchen. I like Rangemasters, my wife likes FANTASTICALLY expensive Falcon ranges. Are they really that different? They're both made by Aga aren't they? [more inside]
I have family coming in for a funeral this week. Our house is the hub, so I'm going to be feeding a group of 10-12 for 5 days. Any thoughts on comforting foods, that are relatively easy to prepare for that many? I am a good cook, but will have to spend some time at work this week, so I won't have tons of time to devote to this.
After some great success with a lavender and blueberry sauce I was thinking it would be fun to have a whole party based around flower/flowering food and drink. I've got blooming flower tea and rose-infused vodka on the list, and my local market occasionally sells edible flowers around this time of year - but what are some other flower-based dishes I should be looking at? What should I be looking out for in terms of safety and not accidentally poisoning my guests? What kind of springtime courses would be in season? (For the sake of my sanity I'm going to try for buffet style small plates) And is there anyplace online or in the NYC area that specializes in edible flowers? [more inside]
Hi, me and mrs.chasles and the two littlest chasleses all eat rice, and how! we cook a LOT of white rice in the rice cooker but for flavored rice (think uncle bens type stuff) we switch to the boxes. they are great and savory but very high in sodium and quite a bit more expensive than white rice in the cooker. so how do we migrate from boxed to recipes in the rice cooker (or slow cooker)? the flavors we usually buy are like chicken and herb, wild mushroom, that sort of thing. nothing cheesey etc. In other words is it as simple as "throw some mushrooms in with the rice" or do we need to get more complex? Now with the background out of the way here is the question distilled down: how do we get that intense creamy flavor in a rice cooker? we are both good in the kitchen, so complexity or make-in-advance are all ok for us! thanks for helping!