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Barkeeper's Friend Scratched My Aluminum

My relatively new shiny aluminum loaf pan remains shiny though I wash it with dishwashing liquid every time I use it (and I've used it about 4 times now). Same with my shiny aluminum coffee pot, which I've used for years and occasionally wash with dishwashing liquid or baking soda.

Feb 14, 2014
reptilegrrl in Cookware

Barkeeper's Friend Scratched My Aluminum

The thing is, people are always recommending BKF for aluminum. The BKF website even recommends using it for uncoated aluminum. I don't think in that case my expectations (that it not damage things) were too high. I posted this, though, hoping that other people won't make the same mistake I did.

From now on I will just use soap and water, maybe cream of tartar if necessary.

Feb 14, 2014
reptilegrrl in Cookware

Barkeeper's Friend Scratched My Aluminum

I'm posting this just because I didn't think this could actually happen or was even a concern, and I think other people should know. I received a new baking sheet yesterday, and I had a hard time getting the adhesive from the label off of the sheet. So, I scrubbed at it with a little BKF, and as a result the area where the BKF was is now scratched up (it had a mirror finish before) and darkened in color.

I've always had BKF recommended for using on non-anodized aluminum, and I use it on SS all the time without problems, but I've never seen this happen before. (The only aluminum piece I've used BKF on before was already damaged because my partner put it in the dishwasher.)

I definitely won't use BKF on aluminum again, and I am going to contact the company too.

Feb 13, 2014
reptilegrrl in Cookware

Pan Release Makes Brownies Greasy

I was tired of hand-buttering pans for baking, so I made a batch of the pan release that I see all over the internet. Equal volume shortening, vegetable oil, and flour. I used rice flour.

I used it for brownies tonight and though it released fine, the brownies had a greasy sheen left on them. Is this normal? It's pretty unattractive.

Jan 29, 2014
reptilegrrl in Home Cooking

Stainless steel proofing buckets?

Wow, great suggestion, thank you. And the buckets have lids?

Jan 22, 2014
reptilegrrl in Cookware

Stainless steel proofing buckets?

I found many bowls searching with that phrase, but unfortunately google interprets ceramic and proofing together to mean someone looking for oven-proof ceramics.

Jan 22, 2014
reptilegrrl in Cookware

Gluten/Wheat Free Bread Issues

I use an oven thermometer :) It usually agrees with my oven, but every once in awhile the oven will spike.

Jan 21, 2014
reptilegrrl in Special Diets

Stainless steel proofing buckets?

I'm baking a lot of (wheat-free) bread and I am at the point where I need proofing buckets for bulk fermentation. I can't find any that are not made of plastic. I am trying to avoid plastics in the kitchen as much as possible (for a lot of reasons).

I need something that doesn't have a huge footprint in the fridge.

I did find "pizza dough pans" made of stainless steel, but I am not sure they would work for breads that rise up a lot, they are not very tall. I have also found a few cylindrical stainless steel bowls with lids, but the large ones never seem to be sold separately.

Jan 20, 2014
reptilegrrl in Cookware

Gluten/Wheat Free Bread Issues

They call for "any gluten free all-purpose blend", and say to add xanthan if the flour doesn't have it. I thought the guar gum would stand in for xanthan gum, but it really doesn't. Psyllium helps.

I do think these recipes have too much moisture, which is just one of the many problems with this books.

Jan 20, 2014
reptilegrrl in Special Diets

using sorghum flour in biscuit recipe

I think the kind of biscuits you are talking about were not made with sorghum flour; they were called sorghum biscuits because they were sweetened with sorghum syrup. White sugar was a luxury, and sorghum syrup was the sweetener of rural poor folks. Appalachia has a long tradition of using sorghum as a sweetener.

Jan 02, 2014
reptilegrrl in Home Cooking

How much blood should be in a chicken carcass?

Update: I wrote to the chicken people and they told me that they recently realized that, because of the cold weather, the blood is congealing in the chickens faster than it did when the weather was warm. They are going to try to make their slaughter floor warmer.

Dec 06, 2013
reptilegrrl in General Topics

Gluten/Wheat Free Bread Issues

jvanderh- I always use a scale when baking.

I don't use xanthan gum, at least not right now. I use Pamela's Artisan Flour blend, and since making this post, I've started adding a tablespoon of psyllium husk powder to the flours when I make a loaf of bread. I've also started adding a second rise (first rise overnight in the fridge, second just before baking). I'm also baking at a slightly lower temp and a bit longer (to make sure the bread gets cooked in the center and bottom without the outside burning), and letting the breads cool for about 10 minutes in the oven with the burner off and the door propped slightly open. I might add a bit extra flour next time.

Unfortunately, what I think it really comes down to is that the recipes in the book I am using (the first "Gluten Free On A Shoestring" book) were not adequately tested. I tried a recipe from Land O Lakes the other day and it had a much much better texture.

Thanks for your comment!

Dec 06, 2013
reptilegrrl in Special Diets
1

How much blood should be in a chicken carcass?

Yeah, it is kind of gross. I just squeeze the congealed blood out of the veins where I can see it. I use a napkin to blot off visible surface clots. WHen I cook it it's fine.

Nov 30, 2013
reptilegrrl in General Topics

How much blood should be in a chicken carcass?

The thing about whole chickens is that unless I want to roast a whole chicken, there aren't a lot of things to do with it. If I want to make chicken and rice, or stir-fry, or ramen, or etc, parts are more convenient than the whole thing. I always use bones and scraps etc to make stock.

Thanks!

Nov 30, 2013
reptilegrrl in General Topics

How much blood should be in a chicken carcass?

I buy these vacuum sealed, and also, this is chicken. Myoglobin is more of an issue in red meat.

Nov 30, 2013
reptilegrrl in General Topics

How much blood should be in a chicken carcass?

I just don't know how drained they are supposed to be, what is in the realm of acceptable, etc.

Nov 30, 2013
reptilegrrl in General Topics

How much blood should be in a chicken carcass?

I thought buying whole birds would be cheaper and easier, but it's really not. The only time a whole chicken is easier is when you want to roast a whole chicken. If I want to make chicken and rice or chicken and dumplings or stir-fry or ramen, a pack of thighs is much easier.

Nov 30, 2013
reptilegrrl in General Topics
1

How much blood should be in a chicken carcass?

Local chicken farmers who sell their own meat at local shops and farmer's markets. (A big box store is by definition not a local outfit.) I am not sure if they process their own or not.

Nov 30, 2013
reptilegrrl in General Topics

What To Do With A Already Roasted Acorn Squash BESIDES Soup

Mash it and make squash gnocchi. Or serve it mashed with butter and your choice of spices. Or make squash risotto. Hell, make squash risotto and then stuff the squash with it.

Cube it, toss it with a leafy green veggie and spices. Or put the cubes into a soup, like with leafy greens and white beans, or into a spicy soup with chunks of beef, tomato, etc.

Make pumpkin bread/muffins.

Nov 30, 2013
reptilegrrl in Home Cooking

How much blood should be in a chicken carcass?

I would think that too, except that it's not just little bits near the cut bones, but congealed in the veins as well. I squeeze it out like toothpaste. Some parts of the flesh are also quite red. And to be clear, I am talking about the raw product.

Nov 30, 2013
reptilegrrl in General Topics

DO NOT DISCARD THE TURKEY CARCASS(ES)

In your shoes, I would go ahead and start cooking the turkey stock. A crock pot is great for this. Use as little water as possible. Once it's done, reduce it if you must and then freeze it. This reduced stock will take up much less freezer space than will a whole carcass.

Nov 29, 2013
reptilegrrl in Home Cooking

DO NOT DISCARD THE TURKEY CARCASS(ES)

I simmer the carcass for a little while, which loosens the remaining meat. It's then excellent for enchiladas or anything really. THEN I simmer the bones and skin for hours and hours.

Nov 29, 2013
reptilegrrl in Home Cooking

DO NOT DISCARD THE TURKEY CARCASS(ES)

I say yes. I've made it once now and it turned out to be very delicious. Turkey has a lot of connective tissue, so you get a very silky stock. Also many tiny bits of meat will reveal themselves in the first part of simmering; you can remove those and either use them in soup, or have turkey salad, toss them with pasta, etc.

Nov 29, 2013
reptilegrrl in Home Cooking

How much blood should be in a chicken carcass?

I buy my chickens from two different local outfits. One sells only whole chickens, one sells chicken parts as well. The one who sells parts is actually the one I usually buy from because I've figured out that a whole chicken is kind of a pain in the butt.

I have noticed recently that in the parts I have been getting (usually bone-in thighs), there's a lot of retained blood. It is congealed in the blood vessels and also evident in the flesh, which is in parts very red. This is not the case with the whole chickens I buy from the other guy, but I have only been eating meat for a year now so to be honest I am not sure what is "normal". I just know that lately I have been seeing much more blood in these thighs than I have in any chicken in the last year.

Nov 29, 2013
reptilegrrl in General Topics

Oxidized sweet potato dough? Have you ever seen this?

It might be possible, but it would have been on the other dish too.

Nov 21, 2013
reptilegrrl in Home Cooking

Baking Gluten Free

I have been using psyllium husk powder instead of xanthan gum and it works very well.

Nov 21, 2013
reptilegrrl in Special Diets

Oxidized sweet potato dough? Have you ever seen this?

I made up a batch of wheat-free sweet potato biscuits the other day. I put the dough in the fridge to chill, using two bowls: one a covered Pyrex loaf pan, one a RUbbermaid glass bow. The next day, the dough in the Pyrex bowl had turned blue-green (see attached pic.)

It has only gotten blue-er since then. The discoloration penetrates about an inch into the dough mass from every edge except the bottom, and while at first it only reached about halfway down the pan, now it reaches to the bottom and only the bottom surface is still orange.

I know it's probably oxidation, but it's really weird to me because while the Rubbermaid bowl was more airtight than the Pyrex one, it still had air in it. I don't get why the dough in the Pyrex bowl oxidized so very badly. I have also stored this same kind of dough in a non-airtight, Corning casserole for a week before, without this kind of discoloration.

I tasted the dough and it has lost the sweet taste it had before. So I'm going to toss it, which is really disappointing.

ETA: I know sweet potatoes can oxidize when peeled and raw, but this dough uses cooked sweet potatoes. They had been cooked and in the fridge for a few days before I made the dough.

Nov 21, 2013
reptilegrrl in Home Cooking

Baking Gluten Free

I actually am using Pamela's Artisan Flour blend for bread and such. So far I like it, but it's a little soft for bread, I have to add psyllium.

Nov 16, 2013
reptilegrrl in Special Diets

Gluten Free Flour Blends WIth Sorghum and Almond?

I'm pretty good at making GF bread, and I make it frequently. I am using Pamela's Artisan Flour Blend, because it is easily available to me and has no xanthan gum. I really don't like the smell of the bread, though, and sometimes the taste leaves a bit to be desired. I am trying to capture that nutty sweetness that wheat bread has.

So I am thinking of jumping into making my own blend, with sorghum and almond flour included (at least for the purposes of bread.) What do you think? Are there any recipes for this that you would recommend?

I would also welcome recipes for any flour blend that you think approximates the taste of wheat flour in bread. That is what I am trying to do: get close to the good flavor of real bread.

Nov 16, 2013
reptilegrrl in Special Diets

Gluten-free Baking--How to get started?

Some of the GF AP flours are good for certain applications and some for others. I have been using the Pamela's Artisan flour blend because it's available at my local Sprouts and it has no xanthan gum (which I avoid, though a lot of GF people use it.) It's great for cakes and such, but it's a little too starchy for pie crust (comes out too dry) and for bread (I am experimenting with adding psyllium for that.)

To make things easier for yourself, look for a GF recipe instead of trying to convert one of your old ones. Once you have more experience with GF baking you can try converting.

Nov 10, 2013
reptilegrrl in Special Diets