Cooking Experiments!

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Liriodendron_fagotti
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by Liriodendron_fagotti »

Made a second batch of bagels, this time with a 50:50 white:whole wheat flour ratio. They turned out pretty great.
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Lethal Interjection
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by Lethal Interjection »

I cooked my first turkey yesterday.
I didn't want to, but a situation arose. In that I was de-icing my freezer on Friday morning, and took everything out and put it all back in. Well everything but the turkey, a sad discovery I made when I got home that evening. It was fine, but quite thawed and not re-freezable.
So, knowing that Sunday was my only real option for cooking within a reasonable time, that was what I did.
Did a rough semi-dry-brine for a few hours in the morning, and basted with a pound of butter I infused with chili powder.
It turned out fine. It wasn't what I wanted to do with it (I wanted to wet-brine for a few days) and it was a little dry. It was okay, though, especially for a first attempt.

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Astrogirl
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

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Yay turkey!

I can't figure out what wet-brining is.
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by DonRetrasado »

Astrogirl wrote:I can't figure out what wet-brining is.
A wet-brine involves immersing the bird in Nackle water, whereas a dry-brine is massaging Nackle (and other ingredients) directly into the bird, and relies on the moisture inside the bird to absorb the Nackle and flavour.
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Liriodendron_fagotti
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by Liriodendron_fagotti »

I made a couple batches of potato chips yesterday. They were amazing. Professional-quality. I used slightly older, going a little soft potatoes, and I wonder if that helped at all.

Today I made pretzels. They're really similar to bagels (the recipe I used was actually adapted from a bagel recipe). The main difference is there's no malt extract in the pretzels while there is half a stick of butter. You also prep the yeast and let the dough rise a lot more. First batch is about to come out of the oven.
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Apocalyptus
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by Apocalyptus »

Today I made scrumpy buns with scrumpy I got from a cider festival yesterday! They are made with a combination of white, wholemeal and barley flours and taste pretty darn good.
They turned out a lot larger than expected though so I might divide the dough into more buns next time.

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Astrogirl
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

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This doesn't look half bad. What is scrumpy?
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by Kimra »

She got it from a cider festival... I assumed cider.
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Apocalyptus
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by Apocalyptus »

Yes, it is a kind of rustic cloudy apple cider. They were selling 4 litre jugs at the festival for $25, which is pretty darn reasonable.

When I bought it the ferment was still active, so as it sits in my fridge it continues to ferment and becomes more and more alcoholic. I am also thinking about experimenting with buying cloudy apple juice, mixing a little bit of scrumpy in and seeing if it becomes more scrumpy.
Having a continuous supply of scrumpy for drinking and breadmaking for the price of apple juice would be pretty boss. It would be great to make mulled cider once it gets really cold in wintertime.
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by Liriodendron_fagotti »

Going to make madeleines tomorrow. I made ..."crumpets"... the other day. They tasted great, and had the same consistency as ones I've had before, but I didn't make the batter thin enough so the bubbles didn't stay popped open. The recipe said to make the pan/griddle (I used a cast-iron skillet) very hot, so I did. A "bit" too hot, since the bottom cooked way too fast. A fair number looked ...decent.

I'll try again.
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by Liriodendron_fagotti »

I made crumpets for real this time and they are wonderful! Perfect holey top and everything. Just the right chewy-to-crispy ratio.
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by DonRetrasado »

Liriodendron_fagotti wrote:Today I made pretzels. They're really similar to bagels (the recipe I used was actually adapted from a bagel recipe). The main difference is there's no malt extract in the pretzels while there is half a stick of butter. You also prep the yeast and let the dough rise a lot more. First batch is about to come out of the oven.
Do you have a recipe you can share for this one? I got a hankering to make a pretzel...
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Apocalyptus
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by Apocalyptus »

Also I would like the crumpet recipe.
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Liriodendron_fagotti
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by Liriodendron_fagotti »

DonRetrasado wrote:Do you have a recipe you can share for this one? I got a hankering to make a pretzel...
I sure do!

Some things not in the recipe:
1) When boiling the pretzels, I ladled the water onto the tops so they developed a good crust. They're too unstable to flip like bagels.
2) Don't overboil them too much.
3) I only had a couple eggs when I made them and didn't want to waste one on an egg wash. Still came out fine but I want to try it with the wash, too.
4) If you don't have parchment paper, just oil the baking sheet and you'll be okay. Do not use wax paper.*


*I don't know what your baking experience is, but I've made the stupid mistake of replacing parchment paper with wax paper 5-6 too many times.

And here is the crumpet recipe!
X-tra pro tips:
1) When the recipe says to thin the batter so it forms holes, listen to it.
2) Do not make your pan crazy hot. I had my (gas stove) on the lowest setting and it was perfect. I think the recipe assumes we're cooking over peat.
3) Get more than one ring to make them in, because it took me a few hours all told because I had to cook them one at a time.
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Lethal Interjection
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Re: Cooking Experiments!

Post by Lethal Interjection »

Not really cooking, exactly, but I harvested my first bit of gardening.*
Picked nine Thai chilies. Quite pleased. I've never cooked with Thai chilies, so I tasted the end of one to get a sense of the heat. I was surprised and delighted. I hadn't intended on growing Thai chilies (I meant to grab two jalapeno plants) but enjoyed the taste and heat of the Thai chilies.
I ended up making a weird Thai pasta with several of them. It was a supremely bastardized fusion dish that, if I had them, any Italian or Thai grandmother would have disowned me for. But it was quite delicious.
Thankfully I noticed the very early beginnings of a jalapeno from that plant. Nothing yet from my two bhut jolokia (ghost pepper) plants, but there are a few blooms which I'm hoping will produce.

Semi-relatedly, my new digs don't have enough sun for me to continue the plants through the winter. However, the other weekend my dad told me he has a UV light for plants that is collecting dust at his work that he can give me. Hopefully that'll be enough for me to keep them producing through the winter.


*Well, second round, but clipping some herbs (basil and mint) is far from exciting. Especially since herbs are really low-maintenance.


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