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Ditching the mircowave?

Cooking without a microwave? I forgot how!
It is certainly the best way to cook fresh veggies - including potatoes for mashing. Put them in a microwave-safe covered dish; add a couple of tablespoons of water; and nuke them until they are the desired doneness.

Feb 21, 2014
condie in Cookware

Are expensive/gourmet coffee beans worth it?

That is good information. I appreciate it. That article also indicates that if the coffee is to be kept longer than two weeks, freezing it is okay one time only. Repeated freezing, however, is bad news. Thanks again.

Feb 15, 2014
condie in General Topics

Are expensive/gourmet coffee beans worth it?

All people who truly love coffee are experts in the coffee they love. Millstone Columbian Supremo is a good middle priced quality coffee that I like. It is available at Sam's Club at a lower cost than you will find elsewhere. Store it in the freezer except for a small container that you keep in the cupboard near your grinder. Don't grind it until you are ready to make a fresh pot. Enjoy!

Feb 15, 2014
condie in General Topics

Looking for a cookbook recommendation: topic = SOUPS!

There are lots of different soups - all wonderful, but I have never seen a soup recipe book. The best soup is one in which you can toss any of yesterday's leftovers and call it 'chili' or 'minestrone'.

Jan 17, 2014
condie in Home Cooking

Ground Chuck = Boring Burger

I traditionally use grass finished beef which is much leaner then that from the stockyards, and have found that mixing 1/4 cup of olive oil into the ground beef works quite well.

Nov 01, 2013
condie in General Topics

A less-sweet pecan pie

Most of the responders assumed that we were discussing pecan pie - the filling of which is almost candy. Caramelized pecans (with less than the recipe amount of sweetner), however makes a wonderful topping for pumpkin and sweet potato pie.

Nov 01, 2013
condie in Home Cooking

A less-sweet pecan pie

Maple syrup is by itself a subject for discussion. There are many producer sources from which to order. I buy a gallon every year or so from Branon Family Maple Orchards in Vermont: www.branonmaple.com

Nov 01, 2013
condie in Home Cooking

10" and 12" Knives

Of course the size of the knife depends on the size and shape of the cook; the size and shape of the cutting board; the kitchen facilities; and the job that is being done. It is all very individual.
For the average situation, I would think that 12" is a bit long.

Oct 12, 2013
condie in Cookware

whole wheat flour gone bad????

White flour is more convenient in several ways. But the goodness and flavor of things made with white flour comes from the yeast and other ingredients, not from the flour. You can't replace the freshness, wholeness and wholesomeness of whole wheat. You can only substitute the flavor.

Sep 14, 2013
condie in General Topics

whole wheat flour gone bad????

Rancid is rancid. It draws bugs, tastes bad, smells bad, and is bad for you. Throw it out.
Fresh, on the other hand, is wonderful! Fresh ground flour placed in a plastic bag and quickly frozen will retain its freshness indefinately.
If you know someone with a flour grinder it is worth a premium price to obtain this freshness. Take it directly from the grinder to the freezer.

Sep 14, 2013
condie in General Topics

Tomatoes: what are you doing with them?

How do I use tomatoes? Let me count the ways.
The ways are virtually unlimited as the responders are showing us.
One of our favorite things for breakfast is toast and peanut butter topped with sliced tomatoes.

Aug 31, 2013
condie in Home Cooking

Recipes that use up honey?? Recommended recipes, please....

Honey is the only additional sweetner that I use for fruit pies. In addition to fresh fruit, I also include dehydrated fruit in the pies to absorb the extra moisture.
Note: If the fruit is frozen, the honey must be very warm or it will not stir in well.

Aug 31, 2013
condie in Home Cooking

Lids for frying pans, useful or a waste of money?

Universal lids work fine for stovetop cooking. They are lighter and easier to handle than heavy cast iron lids. If, however, you are using your frypan in the oven, a universal lid with a plastic handle is a definate no-no.

Aug 16, 2013
condie in Cookware

knife storage

Knives are at the same time the most used and the most dangerous tool in the kitchen. They should always be cared for and handled with care. Magnetic strips used with reasonable caution are convenient for you and easy on the knives. They, of course, should be out of reach of children and pets. Be sure to place the knives solidly on the strip, and remove them with reasonable caution.
I have two sets - one for the smaller knives and scissors, and one for the larger knives. I recommend them as a part of every well equipped kitchen.

Aug 09, 2013
condie in Cookware

Do you marinate your steak?

The flavorings that you use are limited only by your own tastes and imagination. If you happened to have access to fresh herbs and spices, so much the better.
I like to finely mince garlic and herbs (rosemary, sage, oregano, etc.) together in a bed of salt; I also like citrus and rosemary; and I especially like jerk spices. But I believe my favorite is simply fresh ground black pepper and kosher RealSalt (Redmonds).

Jun 21, 2013
condie in Home Cooking
1

Do you marinate your steak?

Yep. Acid (vinegar or lemon juice) and oil are basic for tenderizing meat. Everything else is flavoring.

Jun 21, 2013
condie in Home Cooking

Do you marinate your steak?

I have adapted my own variation from the former Recipezaar, now @ http://low-cholesterol.food.com/recip...
It is a good recipe, but never be afraid to 'wing it'. That is the only real way to learn what works and what doesn't.
Yes, I admit to adding a bit of whiskey to that recipe.
Unfortunately, my lips have become allergic (acid burns) from fresh tropical fruits, so I must use canned or cooked.

Jun 21, 2013
condie in Home Cooking

Do you marinate your steak?

That is strictly a personal preferance call. I like good steaks. I like them marinaded and I like them simply salt-and-peppered. I get grass-fed, grass-finished beef that is normally a bit tougher than store-bought. I usually marinade them in a bit of oil and flavorings. Daddy Hinkles is great and convenient.
I have never tried Jack Daniels on meat, but normally I prefer my whiskey straight and my steaks pure.

Jun 21, 2013
condie in Home Cooking

Are Herb Scissors Necessary?

Sounds like another gadget that I probably don't need to take up drawer space that I don't have to spare.

May 24, 2013
condie in Cookware

Tips for Juicy Burgers

Olive Oil mixed carefully into extra lean ground beef works very well. I use the naturally lean ground beef from grass-fed, grass-finished cattle. By mixing in at least 1/4 cup of olive oil and flavoring ingredients to 2 pounds beef, I get wonderfully juicy and flavorful burgers without the saturated fat.

May 22, 2013
condie in Features

What's Hot, What's Not, in Pots and Pans

I'll pitch my smoothtop stove before I'll discard the cast iron cookware. :-)

Mar 01, 2013
condie in Cookware

Vertical Roasting - Yay or Nay

I appreciate the videos. It gave me the confidence to try it. It worked great roasting it upright in a 5 quart dutch oven. That allowed me to add some veggies around the base. It was just a tad underdone at 15 min. per pound of meat. Probably the veggies absorbing some of the heat.The next time I'll go for 20 minutes per lb.

Feb 15, 2013
condie in Home Cooking

Use for cranberries that ISN'T sauce

I add as much a one half cup of cranberries to every fruit pie that I am making. It perfectly offset the super sweetness of the other fruits and honey.
I have also used cranberries successfully by mixing them with the pecans that I am caramelizing to top pumpkin or sweet potato pies.

Dec 07, 2012
condie in Home Cooking

Recipes for cooking with coconut oil?

Coconut oil should not be stored in the fridge. Neither should anything that is made using coconut oil. A large pie, for example takes some folks at least a week to eat. Made with coconut oil and kept at room temperature is fine if you like moldy pie. Keeping it in the fridge turns the coconut oil crust into concrete.
Butter is best.

Sep 21, 2012
condie in Home Cooking

Crock Pot versus Dutch Oven cooking

There are advantages to both, but if you can have only one, get a nice quality slow cooker crock pot. For the modern home cook an electric crock pot is a virtual necessity. A Dutch oven is a nice luxury.
I use a Dutch oven for searing, for cooking large batches of ground beef, or for baking soda breads. I use a slow cooker for large roasts, or for many things that I may be transporting to a covered dish dinner.

Sep 07, 2012
condie in Home Cooking

Pie thickener

You've got that right! For Thanksgiving pies, I even prefer to mash pumpkins and sweet potatoes with a potato masher rather than pulverize them with a blender.

Aug 09, 2012
condie in Home Cooking

Pie thickener

You wouldn't recognize them.
Sour cherries, cranberries or gooseberries that have been dehydrated and then rehydrated with the juice from sweet fruit or honey will become sweet, while offsetting the super sweetness of the pie.
I wish I had a treefull of sour cherries.

Aug 04, 2012
condie in Home Cooking

Pie thickener

I also prefer tapioca for fruit pies, but do not use very much of it. Much of the fresh fruit juices can be absorbed by simply adding dried (dehydrated) fruit to the filling. No one knows that some of the wonderful whold berries or sliced apples were previously dried.

Aug 03, 2012
condie in Home Cooking

Grinding coffee beans

Hold the grinder against your belly with a pillow before pressing the grind switch. It sounds like a purring kitten that won't even awaken anyone sleeping in the same room.

Jul 28, 2012
condie in General Topics

Garlic powder & onion powder vs garlic & onion

I sometimes like to add some garlic powder and salt to the pasta water that I am using for cooking, but the pasta must be cooked without a lid and watched fairly closely or it will boil over. I also sometimes mix it with some ingredients that I will be using for pre-coating the turkey for baking.
There is little reason to use dried or powdered anything except for convenience. It's good to have dried garlic, onion or herbs on hand when there is snow on the garden and the grocery store is not handy.

Apr 20, 2012
condie in Home Cooking