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Recommendations for a French Tian recipe?

Lacking responses for some time, I had to go assume that hardly anyone else has heard of this one, either (me to me). Here's some pics. Will report back on flavor:

about 8 hours ago
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

Recommendations for a French Tian recipe?

First time effort for me today at making French Tian. I have some questions at the end. But first: it's a generally vegetarian kind of gratin or thin casserole of carefully layered uniform slices of 3 or more things like tomato, potato, summer squash, eggplant and various approaches to integrating onion, garlic, olive oil herbs, etc. Heard about this first last weekend when the Splendid Table radio show had actor Stanley Tucci sharing this recipe, which he calls, with his Italian focus, vegetable parmesan:

http://www.splendidtable.org/recipes/...

Ina Garten has several where the elements are similar, although the cut is different and the cheese, e.g. (note here, the photo shows before cooking, and you need to watch :

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/in...

Any thoughts about my current plans?

1. Mean to season and perhaps give a light oiling to the sliced vegetables before they are tightly layered against each other.

2. I mean to take the onions to a big darker stage than is shown on the Ina Garten video before assembly.

3. While the main idea of this dish is that moisture from the vegetables is part of what binds this together, I think I'l presault or even par-hake the eggplant to reduce the bitterness of its moisture.

4 Finally, I wonder if anyone knows how suitable this is as a make-ahead dish for a day or two later? It seems possible that the veggies, esp. if already salted, might start to cure or deconstruct in a way that, who knows, could be great, but different.

Thanks for any thoughts.

about 15 hours ago
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

Reheat shoulder for pulled pork?

I'd cook it covered in the oven to facilitate occasional temperature checking, esp. if you have a probe thermometer. Some broth or water cannot hurt, unless you're after bark. When it's very fork tender, it's done. 190-195 degrees.

Nov 24, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

Very best sausage for cassolette?

Same kind of problem with bouillabaisse: sourcing the traditional seafoods here is close to impossible, but also not necessary. It's a kind of prep rather than just an ingredient list in each case.

Nov 24, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

How to avoid mold on bread?

Not sure. We just observed that all the cheeses molded but the Kraft, which was the only one mith natamycim (itself described as a "natural" mold inhibitor, but an additive all the same.

The soft cheese like brie molded quickest and most fully. Harder cheeses were slower to mold. We didn't take/have enough time to see when the Kraft cheese would mold at all.

On looking back, I now recall that the feta also didn't mold in 10 days.

Nov 22, 2014
Bada Bing in General Topics

How to avoid mold on bread?

Things like natamycim and calcium propanoate.

Some years ago for a science experiment with my son, we put several types of cheese on plates and observed how quickly they would mold at room temp. The one that would not mold at all within ten days was shredded Kraft mozzarella, treated with natamycin.

These things are used in commercial breads. Ever wonder why hot dog buns can just sit on the counter for two weeks and not even get stale, much less moldy? :)

Nov 22, 2014
Bada Bing in General Topics

How to avoid mold on bread?

What's the ambient temperature where you live, and is it humid?

Nov 22, 2014
Bada Bing in General Topics

Sourdough starter not rising - help!

You make good points, maria! My starter has been going so long (15 years?) that I do not recall what flours I used. But on looking into it, it does seem that whole wheats are often recommended at the outset, and rye especially for its readiness at fermenting.

Also, I agree that the fermenting temperature of the prepared dough (as distinct from the temperature of the starter getting started) is crucial. Once a starter is started, it's temperature is going up and down all the time, what with the fridge. Still, I wouldn't wish to keep my starter out for a day or longer at 90 degrees (32C) or the like. Haven't tried it. And I won't.

Nov 22, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

Turkey Defrosting Disagreement

Just saw I gave the same response. Sorry for duplicating. The bathtub's a cool idea for those without double sink.

As for water use, we have well water that costs nothing, and live in an area where there's no shortage of water at all. So we're lucky.

Nov 22, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking
1

Turkey Defrosting Disagreement

Depending on fridge temp., a frozen 15lb turkey, especially if left as packaged should be expected to take about 4 days to thaw, at least. The speediest way to thaw a large bird is to use a double sink and water convection.

The method requires a level sink: plug one side of the sink, put the bagged turkey in that side, and then fill the sink. Thereafter, keep a light stream of water going and leave it for an hour or so at least. If the sink is level, the water will not overflow onto the counter but instead, as the sink is designed to do, it will flow into the adjacent (unplugged) sink first and drain away.

I don't know the science explanation, but the circulation of water does accelerate thawing significantly compared to a static water bath.

Nov 22, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

Sourdough starter not rising - help!

Good to hear you're persisting. A few points to add.

You're feeding too often. Sourdough, indeed fine bread in general, asks for patience.

I do not suggest using whole wheat for the starter, as its virtues are probably not in keeping with what the yeasts wish for, which is the white part of the flour. You can use whole wheat in breads, of course; but use AP or Bread flour (preferably unbleached, unbroamted) for the starter.

It is normal and not a problem for a starter to separate with a watery layer on top, although I'm surprised it would do so that quickly. Just stir it all back in. Don't pour off the water.

Additionally, you didn't mention that it's warm where you are. How warm? Sourdough actually varies in flavor and bacterial varieties at varying temperatures. According to Peter Reinhart (I think it was him), a temp not much over 70 degrees (21 celsius) is ideal for the most flavorful yeasts to predominate in the dough. If you're in a warmer climate, consider putting your starter into a cooler with some ice in a container on the side. Not frdge temp, but whatever gets you to 65-70 degrees (19-21C).

Nov 22, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

Which foods do you wish were more popular?

I love tendon in pho, too. As an American, I understand that it's one of those commonly off-putting ingredients, like the octopus I mention above. Too bad.

Nov 21, 2014
Bada Bing in General Topics

Bread Dough: Food Processor vs. Stand Mixer

If you have time, consider the no-knead approach, which can be googled up and followed. The main benefit isn't lack of kneading time, but superior flavor from longer fermenting of the dough, which forms strong gluten bonds not through kneading but through a passive process called autolyse.

But you do need 20 hours or so lead time, and 12 hours at a minimum

Nov 21, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

2nd entree that would compliment lamb (also 7hr lamb - leg or shoulder)?

Compliments to you for orthography!

Nov 21, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

2nd entree that would compliment lamb (also 7hr lamb - leg or shoulder)?

I'd want both!

Nov 21, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

What are your 3 favorite cuisines to cook other than your own?

What are some quintessential USA WASP dishes? Lobster Thermidor? Tuna a la King?

Nov 21, 2014
Bada Bing in General Topics

2nd entree that would compliment lamb (also 7hr lamb - leg or shoulder)?

That looks amazing.

Nov 20, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

2nd entree that would compliment lamb (also 7hr lamb - leg or shoulder)?

Eggplant's an awesome idea. I'd go Moussaka myself.

Nov 20, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

Thanksgiving with a small single oven

That's what I thought--I just persist in calling it stuffing regardless. Haven't actually stuffed a bird for at least a decade.

How do you make it in a crockpot? Is it the same as what you'd bake in casserole form?

Nov 20, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

Thanksgiving with a small single oven

By dressing do you mean the same as "stuffing"? Interesting approach that I've never thought of...

Nov 20, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

Thanksgiving with a small single oven

A turkey benefits from 20-40 minutes of resting (I usually layer a kitchen towel atop or a lid or some insulation. You should be able to reheat premade sides in that time. And as you have a crockpot and maybe a microwave, I think you're golden.

Nov 20, 2014
Bada Bing in Home Cooking

Rule #1...always...

Wash your hands before cooking, and often during.

For whom still does Receipt = Recipe?

I think "Quittung" is the most typical word in German today for a retail receipt. "Rezept" in German also means what Americans call "prescription" (in the medicine context).

Nov 20, 2014
Bada Bing in Not About Food

What are your 3 favorite cuisines to cook other than your own?

Nice to see some folks stepping up for German food!

Nov 20, 2014
Bada Bing in General Topics

What type of cuisine do you NOT like?

Funny video on the topic:

http://www.movoto.com/mn/minnesota-fo...

Nov 20, 2014
Bada Bing in General Topics

Would you shop at Walmart Neighborhood Market?

I don't frequent our nearby Walmart, but for mixed reasons. Part of it is that I am not obliged to be price-driven in the extreme. Another part is that I simply don't like going to big stores with generally a middling level product (not just food, but cookware, etc.).

I do have to give them some credit for their more recent efforts to work with local foods in their various locations and to use their clout to make more eco-friendly packaging.

I haven't watched the video link that someone put up here, but I'll try.

If Walmart has a tactic of underpricing local competition until they're starved to death and then jacking up prices, that would seem reprehensible to me.

Nov 19, 2014
Bada Bing in Chains

Would you shop at Walmart Neighborhood Market?

Gosh, I wonder where you live to be 80 miles from the nearest Latin or Asian market! I am sorry.

Nov 19, 2014
Bada Bing in Chains

Is My Chicken Soup Spoiled? Help!

People will hesitate, as I do, to say it's okay. How can we know. But I can say that I have in the past done a similar forgetting.

Sometimes I toss it out with chagrin. But in circumstances where I know that it was heated enough to kill bacteria and where I know that it has not been exposed while cooler to non-sterile utensils, I have reboiled the mixture, used it, and not become ill. That is, if it was more or less sterile when last touched, then I have been willng to gamble, on the view that bacteria will not grow quickly where all bacteria are dead.

A remaining issue is toxins generated by spoilage when bacteria do find their way in, which they will. If I caught it first thing in the morning, I'd boil. Later in the day, toss it.

Nov 19, 2014
Bada Bing in General Topics

Baking Soda to Reduce Acidity of Tomato Sauce

What a shame. Maybe you could counteract with some lemon juice or other acid?

Nov 19, 2014
Bada Bing in General Topics

What are your 3 favorite cuisines to cook other than your own?

Thai, Italian, Indian.

Nov 19, 2014
Bada Bing in General Topics