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BS: Recipes - what are we eating?

Steve Shaw 23 Jan 20 - 06:01 PM
Steve Shaw 23 Jan 20 - 05:51 PM
Stilly River Sage 23 Jan 20 - 04:47 PM
Donuel 23 Jan 20 - 07:16 AM
Steve Shaw 23 Jan 20 - 06:52 AM
BobL 23 Jan 20 - 03:37 AM
Donuel 22 Jan 20 - 08:02 AM
Donuel 22 Jan 20 - 07:51 AM
Steve Shaw 22 Jan 20 - 07:00 AM
Donuel 22 Jan 20 - 06:42 AM
Steve Shaw 22 Jan 20 - 05:49 AM
Stilly River Sage 21 Jan 20 - 09:36 PM
Charmion 21 Jan 20 - 08:13 PM
Donuel 21 Jan 20 - 08:01 PM
Steve Shaw 09 Jan 20 - 07:05 PM
Steve Shaw 09 Jan 20 - 11:11 AM
Charmion 09 Jan 20 - 07:18 AM
Steve Shaw 09 Jan 20 - 05:47 AM
Stilly River Sage 09 Jan 20 - 02:27 AM
Steve Shaw 08 Jan 20 - 09:23 PM
Steve Shaw 08 Jan 20 - 09:21 PM
Charmion 08 Jan 20 - 08:44 PM
Charmion 08 Jan 20 - 08:18 PM
Steve Shaw 08 Jan 20 - 06:00 PM
Charmion 08 Jan 20 - 02:37 PM
Steve Shaw 08 Jan 20 - 05:37 AM
leeneia 08 Jan 20 - 01:41 AM
Steve Shaw 07 Jan 20 - 12:52 PM
Stilly River Sage 07 Jan 20 - 12:38 PM
Mrrzy 07 Jan 20 - 10:50 AM
Donuel 07 Jan 20 - 08:54 AM
Donuel 07 Jan 20 - 07:39 AM
Charmion 07 Jan 20 - 06:29 AM
Steve Shaw 06 Jan 20 - 04:58 PM
Stilly River Sage 06 Jan 20 - 04:14 PM
Raggytash 06 Jan 20 - 03:57 PM
Stilly River Sage 06 Jan 20 - 01:37 PM
Steve Shaw 06 Jan 20 - 12:54 PM
Raggytash 06 Jan 20 - 07:36 AM
Charmion 06 Jan 20 - 07:34 AM
Charmion 02 Jan 20 - 09:51 AM
BobL 02 Jan 20 - 02:37 AM
keberoxu 01 Jan 20 - 04:42 PM
Stilly River Sage 31 Dec 19 - 10:30 AM
EBarnacle 31 Dec 19 - 12:06 AM
Steve Shaw 30 Dec 19 - 07:07 PM
EBarnacle 30 Dec 19 - 12:25 AM
Steve Shaw 28 Dec 19 - 06:32 AM
Dave Hanson 28 Dec 19 - 02:52 AM
Stilly River Sage 27 Dec 19 - 10:04 PM
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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 23 Jan 20 - 06:01 PM

Actually, I do have a bit of an issue with bay leaves. I do have a bay tree I can raid for fresh leaves, but I do wonder what the leaves actually contribute to any dish. I know that I've overdone bay at times and have had to trash the dish. So if I use less, I can't detect their influence. Hmm. I tend to leave them out these days. Other spicy additions I'm suspicious of are cinnamon and fennel seeds. Tiny amounts only of the former and none of the latter. Overdone rosemary can be a bit of a hooligan too. Someone gave me some pistachio biscotti they'd made the other day. I had to spit out the first mouthful as it was overwhelmed by cinnamon. Mrs Steve is eating them so mebbe it's just me!


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 23 Jan 20 - 05:51 PM

I'd use about eight peeled garlic cloves, squashed with my fist and slightly busted up, and leave them out of your holy trinity. It sounds great but I'd have to use whatever chillies I could find. I do live in remote Cornwall, y'know!


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Jan 20 - 04:47 PM

Here's one a friend shared on Facebook recently. The text at the beginning describes the author's experience with the dish. From Texas Monthly magazine: Carne Guisada, a spicy meat stew that goes down well in a tortilla.

Sylvia Casares’s Frontera Carne Guisada
Serves 8

  • 3 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 3 guajillo chiles, stems and seeds removed
  • 1 chile de árbol, stem removed
  • 1 cup chopped white onion
  • 1 cup chopped tomato
  • 1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup tomato sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Holy Trinity*
  • 1/4 teaspoon Mexican oregano
  • 2–3 bay leaves
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

*In a spice grinder, combine 3 peeled garlic cloves, 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin seeds, and 1 1/4 teaspoons peppercorns, along with 1 tablespoon water. Process into a smooth paste.

In a large saucepan, combine the meat with 4 cups water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Skim the froth, then cover and simmer for 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the chiles with 1 cup water. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes. Let cool.

In a blender, process the chiles and their liquid until you have a smooth sauce, about 1 minute. Pass the sauce through a strainer, and reserve 1/2 cup of the liquid.

To the meat in the saucepan, add the onion, tomato, and bell pepper. Stir in the 1/2 cup chile
liquid, tomato sauce, Holy Trinity, oregano, bay leaves, and salt.

Simmer for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and stir until golden in color. Remove from heat and add a small amount of liquid from the stew pot and stir to remove any lumps.

When the meat is tender, whisk in the flour mixture. Stir occasionally while simmering for about an hour, or until the stew is thickened. Serve immediately.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Donuel
Date: 23 Jan 20 - 07:16 AM

Separation by hours of the two should be enough

There are many interactions that are worse or unknown.

Life: you pay your money and you take your chances with medicine.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 23 Jan 20 - 06:52 AM

Grapefruit contains a chemical that inhibits a gut enzyme that breaks down certain medicines. Doses are calculated taking into account the fact that some of the drug will be broken down by this enzyme before it can act. So, if you've eaten grapefruit you may get an overdose of the drug because your gut isn't breaking any of it down. I understand that the grapefruit chemical is also present in Seville oranges. It is absent from other citrus fruits. You can find lists of medicines that are affected online. Most medicines aren't affected, but better safe than sorry, eh!

I can live without grapefruit but not without Seville orange marmalade...


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: BobL
Date: 23 Jan 20 - 03:37 AM

If you're taking grapefruit-incompatible medication (as my partner is), you should have been advised accordingly. If in doubt, ask a pharmacist.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Donuel
Date: 22 Jan 20 - 08:02 AM

Don't drink grapefruit juice if you're taking any of these medications,

Some statins (cholesterol-lowering drugs): lovastatin (Mevacor), atorvastatin (Lipitor), simvastatin (Zocor, Vytorin). ...
Antihistamines: fexofenadine (Allegra)


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Donuel
Date: 22 Jan 20 - 07:51 AM

The action of grapefruit on medicine is partly in the stomach lining changes and not the time release mechanism alone.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 22 Jan 20 - 07:00 AM

Well I hadn't heard that, but I take two time-release medicines...


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Donuel
Date: 22 Jan 20 - 06:42 AM

Grapefruit causes time release medicines to release all at once.
Cantlopes and mellons are sometimes brought to rapid ripening
with traces of arsenic.

The new apple is called cosmic crisp. It is not as tart as honey crisp but never turns brown when cut in half even after a week.
The traditional McKintosh is my next best favorite.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 22 Jan 20 - 05:49 AM

Not sure about grapefruit. I've heard bad things...


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Jan 20 - 09:36 PM

There is a local grocery store (high end) that does various promotions, and about now is their citrus fruit one. All of that stuff is harvested and at a reasonable price. I get a bag of ruby red grapefruit at my local discount grocery, leftover from the high end grocery promotion.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Charmion
Date: 21 Jan 20 - 08:13 PM

Half mandarin, half navel? I’ll look out for those.

The only good thing about food availability in January is the abrupt appearance for a very short time of citrus fruits at a price that feels not quite as ruinous as usual.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Donuel
Date: 21 Jan 20 - 08:01 PM

I tried a new hybrid fruit purchase. They are 1/2 Mandarin Oranges and 1/2 Navel orange. They virtually peel themselves, are large and more reliably sweet than Navals.
Sumos:^)


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 Jan 20 - 07:05 PM

If that puts you off, try this instead. Boil up your frozen peas until done to your liking. Drain and add a small knob of butter and a sliced garlic clove. Use your spud masher to bust them up. You don't have to go mad. If you like (I don't), add a small quantity of finely-chopped baby mint leaves. There you go. Rich man's mushy peas!


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 Jan 20 - 11:11 AM

Some pub mushy peas are terrible, which is a shame. Bad texture, dodgy added colour (absolutely not needed). They're easy to make. You start with those starchy marrowfat peas. You can soak them overnight, or, around here, you can buy cheap kilo bags of frozen part-cooked ones for a pound in Morrison's. One bag does the two of us around four times. You can't do much cheaper than that. With those, all you do is simmer them in just a bit of water for about 20 minutes, once they're warmed up (you start from frozen), with a bit of salt. When they start to break up, help them along with a fork or your spud masher. You may need to adjust the liquid a bit to get them mushy enough. That's it. The soaked ones need simmering for a bit longer, otherwise just as easy. They're great with fish and chips.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Charmion
Date: 09 Jan 20 - 07:18 AM

Yes, Steve, I was quite a treat for the eye back in the day. I still have an ancient snapshot of myself on the open ramp of an M113 armoured personnel carrier, and it is proof that at that time of my life I was tired, not very clean, and dressed by somebody who either did not care or failed to notice that I am not male.

As you say, pulses are the other exception to the rule against canned veg, although I buy only chickpeas in cans, probably because they are not usually the principal ingredient in a dish.

I used to buy bottled tomato-based pasta sauce, but stopped when I discovered Marcella Hazan.

I know all that about the nutritional value frozen veg, but I can’t get past the texture. Also, there’s the memory of military cooking to contend with — vast pans of peas mixed with diced carrots boiled from frozen and set out on the serving line in the junior ranks’ mess. Oy.

When on holiday in England some years ago, I was treated to a pub lunch of pie with mushy peas. The pie was okay, I guess, but I had a very hard time with the peas, which came from a can and tasted like all my worst memories of youth. Fortunately, the local cider was strong enough to cancel the effect.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 Jan 20 - 05:47 AM

I never use bought pasta sauces. Rustling up a quick tomato sauce is pretty simple, and I find the creamy ones in the shops to be too claggy/starchy/oddly thickened. I do use Spice Tailor curry packs though. Questionable authenticity at best, but a lot better than those ones in jars. Frozen peas can be pretty good. I can ever understand why frozen broad beans are never anything like the ones I grow and freeze myself. They're always very small with thick, tough skins and starchy middles. I'm one of those people who can't be arsed to shell broad beans. I've used frozen broccoli to make broccoli and Stilton soup, not especially successfully. The problem with most frozen veg is the watery/floppy/soggy texture. I've always been an aficionado of slightly-undercooked, fairly firm, slightly crunchy veg. I think I was conditioned by my parents boiling coarse, dark green cabbage to within an inch of its life in incredibly salty water, and by an aunt of mine many years ago who used to boil up the cauliflower in advance until very soft then reheat it just before plating up. Can you imagine that....


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Jan 20 - 02:27 AM

Actually, I've heard several nutritionists and popular cooks discuss frozen fruit and vegetables. Typically the produce in those bags or boxes was picked ripe and frozen very close to the field; this in contrast to fruit or vege picked early enough that it will ripen while travelling to wherever it will be stored. It never has the full flavor of vine-ripened when it is treated that way. If you're cooking with fruit or vegetables and choose to use frozen, you'll typically get good quality.

Process foods, there are very few I use. Pasta sauce (and I'm picky about the one I use) is about it, an acceptable shortcut.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Jan 20 - 09:23 PM

Now there's an image. You in wet combat clothing. I'm just off to start dreaming...


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Jan 20 - 09:21 PM

I suppose. Peanut oil is our go-to for very hot frying, mainly for oven chips. I didn't know you could get Bisto over there. I'd rather hack off me dangly bits with a blunt hacksaw than use Bisto. Its presence in our house would constitute an immediate divorce issue. I don't use canned veg either, but I'm assuming that you're not including pulses there. Ideally I'd soak all my beans and chickpeas overnight but I don't. I use canned or tetrapacked every time. Chickpeas especially are pretty good out of cans. I won't buy anything like that if they're salted or in a mix with chilli and herbs. I'll control all that meself, thanks!


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Charmion
Date: 08 Jan 20 - 08:44 PM

Things I won’t use:

Shortening — that is, solid vegetable fat (e.g., Crisco) for use in frying and pastry. I use lard or butter for pastry, on the rare occasions when I make it, and oil for frying.

Also margarine. It took me ten years to convince Himself that the stuff is awful, and he’s better off eating butter. Science eventually caught up with me.

Macaroni and cheese mix. Yuck. Just yuck.

In fact, pretty well any kind of mix. If there’s a mix on the market, I can make it better and cheaper from scratch. The one exception to this rule is angel food cake, which takes a dozen eggs and a lot of skill and luck to make with real ingredients — and then what do you do with a dozen egg yolks?

Instant anything. Coffee, iced tea (I mean, really?), hot cereal, soup from a sachet, pot noodles, gravy (e.g., Bisto), Minute Rice, mashed potatoes in a box, Bisquick. Most of the stuff they sell in the middle of the supermarket.

Most frozen veg. I agree with Steve about peas and, when I butcher a Hubbard squash, I usually dice it and freeze half for future reference.

All canned veg, except tomatoes, which are technically fruit. In my dreams, I sometimes find myself back in Germany during an exercise, which I know is going on because I’m dressed in wet combat clothing and facing a Melmac plate of alert rations: canned sausage with instant mashed potatoes and canned creamed corn on the side.

Unlike Steve, I use canola (rapeseed) oil. Too many people are allergic to peanuts these days.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Charmion
Date: 08 Jan 20 - 08:18 PM

The kitchen scale just died, following the computer into electronic oblivion.

F*** my life.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Jan 20 - 06:00 PM

I have a mandoline but I can't be arsed with it. I find that slicing my veg with a good sharp knife to be very therapeutic, especially if I stick some Mozart on and stay mindful while I'm slicing. I too am in a post-Christmas coma. There's stuff in the freezer to keep us eating well. And there's always cheese.

As a diversion, here's a new angle: stuff I never use. I've already trolled SRS about her despicable resort to dried basil. ;-). I'll add to that soy sauce, any oil infused with something (I'll infuse it myself, thanks), fennel seeds, ready-ground pepper, sticky jasmine rice, tomato purée, olive oil that isn't extra virgin, sunflower oil, canola oil, margarine, anything that says low-fat on the label, instant coffee, any shop-bought frozen vegetables except for peas, and calabrese. Calabrese. Ye gods, tasteless mush!


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Charmion
Date: 08 Jan 20 - 02:37 PM

The salad shooter is a mechanical slicer-dicer that I last saw in a TV infomercial back in the days when we still had TV — a very long time ago. Think of a crank-action mandoline.

We are still in a food coma from New Year.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Jan 20 - 05:37 AM

A "salad shooter?"


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: leeneia
Date: 08 Jan 20 - 01:41 AM

I invented a new chicken dish yesterday.

Save the grease from cooking breakfast pork sausage. Chill it, and the burned bits will sink to the bottom. Don't use them.

Cut chicken thighs in half, warm up on low power in the wave. (They brown better when warm.)

Cut up and saute an onion in some of the sausage grease

Remove the onions, set aside in a pretty bowl

Brown the chicken thighs on one side.

Meanwhile, use salad shooter to slice up carrots and celery

when the chicken is browned on one side, turn it over and start browning that side.

put the carrots and celery in a ring around the meat

put lid on, simmer till meat is tender, maybe 30 minutes more

(I find I have to cook chicken much longer than recipes say.)

Remember those onions? Shortly before it's time to eat, stir 1 tsp sage into the onions, then return them to the skillet to heat through.

You'll notice there is no salt. The DH doesn't like it. Let diners salt it themselves at the dinner table.

Remove the food with a slotted spoon (so fat drains off) and serve. This was GOOD.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 Jan 20 - 12:52 PM

Damn. You posted that ten minutes after I'd just polished off a huge box of fudge... :-(


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Jan 20 - 12:38 PM

Good idea, Don!

This - Make 2020 the Year of Less Sugar is what I need to work on. It includes a link to a lecture I need to listen to. (If the article doesn't open across the pond let me know and I'll do some cut and paste).

Whether you are thin or fat, you can benefit by reducing the sugar in your diet. “It’s not about being obese, it has to do with metabolic health,” says Dr. Robert Lustig, professor of pediatric endocrinology at the University of California, San Francisco, and one of the first to raise the alarm about the health risks of added sugar. (His 90-minute lecture called Sugar: The Bitter Truth has been viewed more than nine million times since 2009.)

“Sugar turns on the aging programs in your body,” Dr. Lustig says. “The more sugar you eat, the faster you age.”


https://www.nytimes.com/programs/sugar-challenge.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Mrrzy
Date: 07 Jan 20 - 10:50 AM

I live in Philadelphia.

Sorry.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Donuel
Date: 07 Jan 20 - 08:54 AM

The 'soup' was worthy of a Shel Silverstien poem.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Donuel
Date: 07 Jan 20 - 07:39 AM

I tried to invent a sesame vegetable soup with Tons of hearty ingredents. It grew bigger and worse.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Charmion
Date: 07 Jan 20 - 06:29 AM

When it has cheese in, it becomes Mornay sauce.

If you care.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 06 Jan 20 - 04:58 PM

Ah, Raggytash is right. She makes the béchamel then stirs cheese into it, which I suppose makes it not béchamel any more. We all have our ways...


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Jan 20 - 04:14 PM

Of course it does - if you add it. "White sauce" - the basis of so many recipes. At my house, many of them have cheese.

I mean, really, WHAT would you want it FOR if it didn't have cheese added?


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Raggytash
Date: 06 Jan 20 - 03:57 PM

Ah hem ………………. Bechamel doesn't have cheese in it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Jan 20 - 01:37 PM

Our family holiday gathering was yesterday and my fridge is stufffed full of leftovers. There won't be any original dishes prepared until some of that is drawn down or frozen. That said, I do have a bowl of chick peas soaking to make a batch of falafel tomorrow; this is to test the new food processor (higher capacity - my old one was woefully under-powered and had a tiny bowl) and take some of the patties over to family who contributed this new tool to my kitchen. (I made a couple of batches of falafel balls last week with the small deep fryer, but this time I'll use shallower oil in a pan and cook flattened patties to eliminate the cleanup involved with the fryer.) The falafel comes now because the son who gave the food processor flies back to the West coast later this week.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 06 Jan 20 - 12:54 PM

We made a huge lasagne two nights ago. It's a collaboration, strictly speaking, as I let Mrs Steve make the béchamel ( we use strong cheddar mixed with parmesan and I don't care what anybody thinks) and assemble the thing. We are somewhat at odds over the ragù. She thinks I should be adding garlic-crusher garlic and I think garlic shouldn't go anywhere near. I compromise by chucking in a few peeled cloves that I've bashed with my fist. Over the years I've secretly removed dried herbs from the mix altogether. I'd rather hack off the family jewels with a rusty machete than add dried basil. As it's Christmas I did add a little sprinkle of dried oregano this time. A sprig of thyme wouldn't hurt. I always start with a soffritto in which I include some chopped unsmoked bacon or pancetta. The soffritto is equal parts chopped celery, carrot and onion in extra virgin olive oil, sautéed until the veg is softened. I brown the meat separately, not too much at once, by dry-frying in a big stainless steel frying pan I've inherited. The meat is half minced steak and half minced pork. Once browned it goes into the soffritto along with a bit of chicken stock, tomatoes (one 400ml tin of plum tomatoes fewer than the number of pounds of meat) and some seasoning. Maybe a splash of wine. That needs a good hour or more at a simmer. Two hours wouldn't hurt. Adjust for correct sloppiness with a bit more stock or tomato. Adding water is far too disappointing. Then it's over to the assembly dept. We cook it for about 40 minutes in a 180C oven. Leftovers are perfect microwaved for breakfast the next day. Either you serve it up with a drizzle of your finest olive oil on top or you're wrong. Some garlic bread and salad goes well. I've seen it on offer in pubs with chips. If you see that, call a constable immediately.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Raggytash
Date: 06 Jan 20 - 07:36 AM

Another batch of Marmalade has just been bottled.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Charmion
Date: 06 Jan 20 - 07:34 AM

Have you lot quit cooking, or what?


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Charmion
Date: 02 Jan 20 - 09:51 AM

BobL, maybe it's the subtlety of my taste buds, but I can tell the difference between boeuf Flamande, a stew of beef and onions made with Belgian-style light ale, and a beef stew made with onions and Guinness. Boeuf Flamande has a sharp, winy flavour, and the Guinness-based dish is sweeter, with a distinctly caramel character. Evidently you are getting different mileage.

For Hogmanay, after I paid the bills and tidied the house, I made faisan à la Normande for the first time. Pheasant is available from our favourite farmer, Mrs McIntosh, and Himself took it into his head that it would be kinda nice. So there I was, looking for crème fraîche in the dairy case at Sobey's -- and I found it, tucked in beside the cottage cheese. I guess the foodies have completed their take-over.

The technique of braising the pheasant was rather messy, as it involved two birds that had to be rolled over every fifteen minutes in a snug-fitting casserole that also contained apple slices and diced shallot simmering in cider. Also, like many French recipes, it preoccupied me to the extent that I barely remembered the other items on the menu, such as veg. Fortunately, Himself's sister had given us a pie, so dessert was taken care of. When all was done and dished up, the pheasant was fine but the sauce was a bit bland; it could have done with a dash of cider vinegar. I'll know better next time.

The fun part was pouring 50 ml of flaming Calvados over the birdies in the casserole, and extinguishing the trussing string when it caught fire. What larks!


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: BobL
Date: 02 Jan 20 - 02:37 AM

Adding beer to a beef casserole never fails, but it doesn't seem to make much difference what sort of beer - lager, light ale, bitter or stout, all give similarly excellent results. Does anyone else find this?


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: keberoxu
Date: 01 Jan 20 - 04:42 PM

Time to visit the Irish-American restaurant
and order
some Guinness beef stew.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 31 Dec 19 - 10:30 AM

I live in a state that is smack in the middle of the US, on the southern border, and it has several layers of tradition. I'm in the Northern part of this Southern state that is more anglo than the Southern portion of this Southern state (where it has the huge influence of Mexico.) This time of year, it is typically lumped with the "Deep South" which are states on the SE corner of the US. In that part of the South, there is a tradition of eating black eyed peas on New Years Day, but I grew up in the far upper NW corner of the contiguous US in Washington, so I don't bother with the peas, they have no appeal or tradition for me. I don't put gravy on my baking powder biscuits, either (another rather loathsome practice down here, especially when it is totally bland "milk gravy" with no flavor to speak of.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: EBarnacle
Date: 31 Dec 19 - 12:06 AM

Steve, I can also cook by smell. It works. A thermometer is more reliable and lets you vary the cooking conditions to meet you needs that day.
Have you ever tried an Empire frozen turkey? It might change your opinion about frozen birds.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 30 Dec 19 - 07:07 PM

I have a rusting old oven thermometer for checking the accuracy of the oven. I may have used it five years ago and I haven't a clue where it is. Other than that, I'm not interested in sticking probes in lumps of meat to find out if they're "done." I know when they're done by appearance and by experience. I've never poisoned anybody and I don't serve up underdone or dried-out meat. I've cooked two 5kg turkeys in the last five days. The rules are:

Don't stuff the turkey

It must be fully at room temp before cooking

Don't use one of those throwaway foil cooking tins. Get a proper baking tin with lots of room in it

Cover the breast with lots of streaky bacon

Put foil over the bird

Turn up the oven to 180C (fan). Put in the turkey on a lower shelf

The 5kg bird needs three hours, then 45 minutes to rest. After an hour and a quarter, take off the foil

After another hour, take off the bacon and baste the bird

Keep an eye on it for the remaining 45 minutes. Baste it once or twice and, if the breast is going a bit too brown, put a small piece of foil on just the breast for a few minutes. You might decide that it can come out a few minutes early

Here's what you don't do:

Never compromise on the quality of the turkey. Genuine free-range and a slow-growing breed are the minimum. Most frozen turkeys are very poor

Never turn the turkey

Never fiddle with the oven temperature. Leave it alone

Never try to cook a huge turkey in a normal oven. Attempts to cook a twenty-pounder in a little oven are doomed to failure. You're far better off with two smaller birds (and you get four drumsticks and four wings...mmmm...) 5kg/12lb is tops for me

I had two perfect turkeys this Christmas. I've made all the mistakes I've mentioned above but, after fifty-plus years of turkey cooking, I'm getting there.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: EBarnacle
Date: 30 Dec 19 - 12:25 AM

Sorry to take so long getting back, Charmion. We use an external digital thermometer but I see no reason for the integrated unit in your oven not to work.

We put the probe into the breast in the middle of the meat as it seems to give consistent readings.

By observation, we have figured out why stopping the cooking at a few degrees before it's officially done works well. The temperature in the outer meat is hotter and averages itself with the temperature in the middle of the meat. If you bring the core temperature to the officially declared "done temperature," it is overcooked and dry.

Check the thermometer calibration by using water at several known temperatures. Most likely it's accurate but it's nice to be sure. Trust but verify.

We did a prime rib in the oven this weekend and put several potatoes in the roasting pan, where they could pick up some of the flavor. A few onions went in, too. When the meat was done, we pulled the potatoes and onions. We pulled the skins off and mashed them with chopped up onions, added eggs and made potato pancakes [latkes]. Delicious! The texture is different from latkes made with shredded potatoes but, when fully cooked, is quite acceptable.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 28 Dec 19 - 06:32 AM

I agree. Leave that to the chippies. SRS, mine can't be called fries because they are first boiled then baked.

If you can get firm little salad spuds that you know will hold their texture, a very simple way of cooking them is to wash them, cut them in half, coat them in extra virgin olive oil with a pinch of salt, stand them on their cut ends on a baking tray and put them in a hot oven (200C fan) for half an hour. You can easily make them Mediterranean style if you want to. Just throw in a sprig of rosemary and a handful of unpeeled garlic cloves. I might wait ten minutes before adding the garlic as it's nice to have the cloves soft and sweet for sucking instead of burnt. One toss half way through is good.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 28 Dec 19 - 02:52 AM

Life is too short to cook chips 3 times.

Dave H


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Dec 19 - 10:04 PM

I've seen television programs that demonstrated how to make chips (what we call "fries" here) with two cooking steps - fry for a bit in the oil, take it out, then put it back in a few minutes later. That's also the way to make tostones, a related kind of fried food made of plantano or plantain bananas. When they're green you can make them into fries, when they're ripe you can bake them and they're sweet and very good with butter and cinnamon sugar. For tostones you fry them a couple of minutes, then each cross-sectioned piece is flattened a bit, put in salty water for a minute, drained, and then back in the oil till it's finished frying.


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