Pink Lentils

Pink lentils, although smaller and thinner than the garden variety light brown lentil, absorb more water quicker, fluffing up more like rice than legumes.

The first time I saw these in the market, many years ago, I was awed. Wow. Pink legumes. Of course I had to have some, only to be disappointed to see them lose their salmony pink color to a yellow pea hue when cooked. Actually more beige than yellow. But they are tender, they are flavorful and they blend into velvet smoothness when processed in a blender, not requiring any oil to achieve that smoothness.

When adding pink lentils to a soup broth the texture will feel rough. It’s only when you blend them that the smooth emerges. So that’s how I would recommend serving them. Test them out though and see for yourself. Maybe with the right veggies the rough texture of the lentils, when left whole, won’t matter. We’re not talking tough here. Pink lentils are tender. They just have a rough mouth-feel. That’s probably why most chefs add oil to the mix, and then blend some, not all, of the lentils to help with that rough feel throughout the soup.

Here’s a recipe for PINK LENTIL CREAM I know you’ll like.




 

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Softening Up Non-Dairy Ice-Cream

My freezer temperature has only one setting that has no bearing on anything else. If the refrigerator is plugged in, no matter the setting for the refrigerator part, the freezer acts the same way – like a blast of cold arctic air. We never have to worry about waiting for ice.

It’s not just that vegan ice-cream is harder than dairy ice-creams, because I really don’t know if it is, based on the way my freezer acts. It freezes everything rock solid.

That being the case, I always have to soften up the dairy free ice-cream. I remove the cover and a few seconds in the microwave does it. Start from ten seconds and work up, so it doesn’t actually melt.

Otherwise, if you don’t have use of a micro-wave, set the container in a larger container of hot tap water, about an inch from the top with the top closed tightly, again for a few seconds, working up in time to where it’s just right.






 

Every Day Is The Only Way

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Some of the filthiest shoes I’ve seen are worn by chefs, cooks and other kitchen staff.

The first runners-up are nurses and hospital staff.

In the two places where clean shoes should be a high priority, they’re at the bottom of the list.

A woman will be all groomed up – perfect hair, make-up, nails – till your eyes drop to her feet and you see garbage pails where shoes ought to be, bacteria bins substituting for shoes.

Covered with barnacles like smelly fish, announcing to the world by their very presence, here we come ready or not, we’ve got wheels, your shoes, and we’re going to infect everybody we see everywhere we walk with new and exciting infectious diseases made to order just for you by your health care professionals and favorite chefs.

Some of the dirtiest people wearing some of the scummiest clothes I’ve ever seen on human beings are preparing your food right now at your favorite high-end, low-end and every where in-between restaurants.

Aprons, jackets, pants – all dirty – caked with grease, flour, sauces, dressings, meat juices, batter, eggs, barbecue, mayonnaise, ketchup wiped directly onto the clothed body day after day night after night without the thought of a clean change of clothes.

Every day is the new and only way.

Every day – in hospital or health care setting, in restaurant or food service setting – you apply a clean set of clothes (washed and ironed). You wash your shoes with big cloth soapy wipes every day when you go home if it is the only thing you do before falling into your oblivious addicted life-after-work routine.

You’re like your own walking door mats, wiping your dirty paws on yourselves, thinking you’re keeping everything you touch clean, except yourselves.

You’re not keeping yourselves clean either. You’re not keeping anything clean.

All these intricately designed tattoos and multi-layered, multi-colored hair set-ups on dirty bodies and dirty heads? Take a bath, wash your hair.

Every day is the only way.

Stay away from my food and administering me health care if you’re not clean according to a prearranged and agreed upon standard.

Every day is the only way.

Once you let one day slide, you’ll let a week or more slide – just because you’re comfortable with your own dirt and don’t consider it unhealthy. You’re not sick so why should you think you can get anybody else sick?

You’re wrong. Appearances count – the way you look is as important as the way the food looks. Do you want to serve ragged, dirty, smelly food? If you do, then get out of the food business. Do you want your food prepared and served to you by a ragged, dirty, smelly person? If you do, then don’t ever get into food service.

Everyone knows when you’re covering up the dirt with fragrance and make-up so why do it? The cover-up takes almost as long.

T.V. chefs this applies to you too. Clean yourself up. And stop dripping your sweat into the customer’s plate of food like you’re proud of it. It stinks and so do you. I don’t want your waste as a part of my meal. Sweat is waste – like shit and piss. Keep it off the plate.

Dirty fingernails? Cut them off if you can’t keep them clean.

Brush your teeth for Christ sake. I don’t care if you only have one. Make that one shine like a pearly gold nugget. Clean it yourself. You only have one to worry about and you’re still complaining? Get away from my food. Don’t apply for a job at the hospital I go to or the doctor’s office I visit. Dirty people need not apply.

All these competing chefs on T.V. all running their hands through their sweaty hair and all over their sweaty faces, then touching all the food? Dipping their fingers into sauces and then licking them, then touching the food again? Who raised you? That mother everybody always says they’re cooking for in their mind would be appalled at the lack of clean technique demonstrated on these shows.

This shouldn’t be as difficult as it appears to be for almost all of you. Did you just slide into these jobs out of bed one day out of the blue? And since you work mostly out of view you thought you could stay dirty all the time and no one cared? What bothers me is that you didn’t care.

Grooming 101.

Every day is the only way.






 

SMOKED PAPRIKA

SMOKED PAPRIKA is the key ingredient added to animal-free recipes tasting of blood. Other additives that enhance the smoked paprika thus the blood taste are garlic powder, dry mustard, turmeric and sea salt.

~ Sharon Lee Davies-Tight






The X-MAS TREE effect in plate presentation

When a chef is critiquing a plate of food one of the things they look for is color – all the major food colors.

You get so accustomed to that x-mas tree of colors on your plate, that if one is missing you go into x-mas tree withdrawal. Oh my God, I lost the  cooking contest because I didn’t put any green on my plate! Horrors!

Stop the insanity on the plate. If all colors belonged on every plate, then all food would look like a rainbow. Who made up that rule anyway?

When you dress yourself do you always have to add a touch of green or red or yellow? Stop the color insanity. Every plate doesn’t have to have the same colors on it.

Make the plate of food look good. Make it look beautiful if you want to create a work of art on the plate. Just be sure it tastes as good as it looks.






 

FENNEL SEED – the perfect plant meat spice

It’s not the same as star anise. It’s close, or should I say star anise is close to fennel seed – a cousin, seems like the same DNA, but is it really? I mean, do I really want to be putting licorice into my savory sauces? That’s what star anise is, basically, the taste of licorice – whatever makes licorice licorice, that’s what star anise tastes like.

Fennel on the other hand – a whiff of something like licorice, but until somebody pointed it out decades ago, I never connected the two – fennel with licorice. I connected it with Italian sausage. Pizzelles (an Italian pastry made on something that looks like a fancy waffle iron), now that’s made using star anise.

Fennel is a savory spice, not a dessert spice. Though now that I’m thinking about it, I think I will make a dessert out of fennel seed. Some day.

There’s a complexity to fennel seed that star anise lacks. Umami is what I’m talkin’ about here. Fennel seed and allspice – yeah I couldn’t leave that other mami out. Team those two and explosions occur in the kitchen, in the pot, in the sauce, in the plant meat…whoa.

Sorry Asians, but soy sauce doesn’t hold a candle to fennel and allspice in the umami department. I don’t know why cooks are putting soy sauce into everything they make. Cream soups even. Take it out.

Of course allspice is not exactly considered a savory spice. Sweet as in dessert is where it is most often used.

I use ground fennel in sauces, soups, salad dressings, plant meats, appetizers, veggie dishes and on and on.

I buy fennel seed in bulk and grind my own. If you live near an Italian grocery store, they’ll probably sell it finely ground, which is just as good as you doing it, since they do it from the seed just like you would. And they only grind what they know they’ll sell.

I use a coffee grinder with good results. It’s best to have two grinders, one for spices and seeds and one for coffee.






 

WASH BEFORE YOU ZEST

If you don’t wash your oranges and lemons before zesting them, and by wash I mean a thorough rub under running water, then you’re feeding your customers poisons through pesticides. Nobody wants neurotoxins served up on their savory and sweet dishes.






 

GRILLING VEG CHEESE SANDWICHES

Before grilling veg cheeses in a sandwich, always bring cheese to room temperature before assembling and grilling.

The cheese will melt quicker.

 

http://chefdavies-tight.com/2016/01/04/potato-bread-quesadilla/






 

PRE-SLICED MUSHROOMS

PRE-SLICED MUSHROOMS. It’s always best to buy whole mushrooms and to slice your own. It’s not difficult, nor does it take much time. This way you control the thickness, and if you want to cube or quarter them, you have that option. More often than not, groceries slice them too thin, then keep them too long on the produce shelf, whereby they turn brown. Brown mushrooms smell and taste fishy – an aroma and taste you don’t want to spoil a dish over.

I always wash my mushrooms, unlike T.V. chefs who keep telling you not to. Wiping them with a towel is ridiculous, since most towels have been used for other stuff. Washing them is quicker than wiping each one down. They dry quickly in a colander and you don’t have any residue from what they were grown in enter your recipe.



 

TASTING

TASTING. Taste and/or smell each ingredient before you add it to a dish, then taste and smell the dish to which you’ve added it, so that you become familiar with the way in which the flavor, texture, color and aroma achievements progress. Cooking is not only an art, but a science as well. Knowing how one ingredient in a particular form, under certain conditions interacts with another, and how those two interact with a third, and so on, will give you a solid foundation from which to begin the creative, more artistic aspect of cooking.

Keep in mind that the flavor, texture, color and aroma achievements are not complete until you serve the dish. This means that while the recipe is in progress it will not taste, feel, look or smell perfectly. Due to our impatient, pleasure-seeking natures, we frequently expect the full flavor, etc. achievement from the beginning, and when we don’t get it we become discouraged and begin altering the recipe, which inevitably leads to further frustration. Be patient; take your time and wait till the end for the full maturation of your achievements to occur.

SIMMERING

SIMMERING generally means to cook just at or below the boiling point. When it makes a significant difference, you will be instructed as to the precise level required for any given recipe. For instance, we can simmer at a slow boil, just barely at the boiling point or just below the boiling point.

If we need to redefine these points further, you will be instructed to simmer at the breaking or rupture point (at that point when the bubble becomes just large enough to break–which is more like a hiccup than a boil–usually occurring in thick sauces); or just below the breaking or rupture point (when the bubble rises up from the sauce, but instead of rupturing, it subsides, and then rises again).

Simmering at the fizzle point refers to lots of tiny boiling bubbles in the liquid, giving the appearance of carbonation.

SEEDING CANNED TOMATOES

SEEDING CANNED TOMATOES. Hold each tomato (one at a time) under cold, slowly running water. Slit lengthwise with your thumb nail. Open tomato; pull pulp up and out, rinsing pulp and seeds into sink. Drain tomato meat that remains, and either chunk, dice or chop for your recipe. This is a very simple procedure that makes a vast, positive difference in your final dish.

SEEDING AN AVOCADO

SEEDING AN AVOCADO. Using a long, sharp knife, cut lengthwise (from tip to tip) all around the avocado, through the skin and far enough into the meat to touch the seed. Insert blade of knife into the cut you’ve made, then twist the knife to separate the two halves.

Take the knife and smack the sharp blade into the enter of the seed. Twist and pull out seed.

Now, using a paring knife, start at the tip of each half, and peel lengthwise till all skin is removed. There is a clear division between skin and meat, so skin will peel off easily. Cut off any brown spots. Some chefs prefer to cut the avocado into cubes while it’s in its shell, and then scoop it out with a spoon. That’s fine if there are no brown spots on it, which is rare for an avocado. Once the cubes are in the bowl you’ll, more often than not, find yourself picking through them to nick off the brown spots.

SCALLIONS

SCALLIONS. Just because you have scallion in the refrigerator doesn’t mean you should garnish every dish with it. However, if you really like scallion with everything, then try varying the cut: some tiny, thin rings, some sliced the long way into 2 inch long matchstick width or smaller.

Try frying up thick round disks of the white part of the scallion. Fry them hard without stirring them in the skillet. Flip gently, fry on the other side, then top whatever you’re topping.

When washing scallions, wash out the inside of the tubes by placing them under the faucet and filling them with water. Rinse several times. Peel off the sticky outer membranes, cut off the tops and store in a jar in refrigerator with a little water in the bottom and a baggie over the tops.

For cilantro or parsley: Wash well, shake dry, place in jar with water, place baggie over the top and refrigerate. Change the water every few days just like you would do a vase of flowers.

SALT

SALT. There’s a difference between Morton’s (or similar) table salt and sea salt. To achieve the same salt taste, it takes a little more sea salt.

You be the judge, since there are also differences among sea salts.

Re: Kosher salt–the rock kind. All the chefs on the food network use it. I’ve tried it, and don’t like it for two reasons.

1.  It’s too difficult to discern measurement. You can’t really measure it accurately. And since measurement is the primary way I communicate a recipe to you, I stay with the granulated/grain variety.

2.  It doesn’t always melt, especially in quick saute dishes, and ends up feeling like bits of glass in the mouth. That’s a texture achievement I don’t wish to achieve.


SALTING THE WATER. Don’t sprinkle a little salt over a large pot of water and expect the water to be salty. For large amounts of water, you need large amounts of salt, especially when cooking pasta, which without salt is especially bland.

 

Many chefs reduce the salt in recipes and some never use it, preferring instead to let the diner salt to their own tastes.

Personally, I prefer the dish come out to me finished, whereby I don’t need a salt shaker.

If I taste a dish and it needs salt, then my first impression of the dish is that it’s lacking something. I prefer a good first impression.

However, people can often adjust to a lower salted dish and actually like the change, whereby too salty cannot never be forgiven by the palate.






 

QUALITY

QUALITY. The quality of the dish you prepare is only as good as the quality of the ingredients that go into it. But, the finest ingredients can be ruined by careless cooking practices. So, shop for quality and cook conscientiously.

PLATE PRESENTATION

PLATE PRESENTATION. How does your plate look after you’ve arranged your food on it? Garnishing illuminates a dish, but be sure that you want what’s on your plate illuminated. Food piled or thrown on like slop gives an undesirable appearance; and appearances do count. No matter what you’re serving, arrange it on the plate in a way that pleases the eye. Then wipe the edges of the plate clean of food droppings and smears.

PEACHES AND NECTARINES, HOW TO CUT INTO SEGMENTS

PEACHES AND NECTARINES, HOW TO CUT INTO SEGMENTS. Do this by holding the peach/nectarine in the palm of your hand, then using a small sharp knife, running the knife from end to end against the pit, making a crescent size slice that measures about 1/4 inch, or any size you want, at the widest part of the individual slice. Do this around the entire peach. Separate the slices from the peach and discard pit.

PASTA

PASTA. Cooking pasta need not require oil added to the water. It’s more important that you use lots of water, and the pasta is stirred continuously from the time of insertion until past the initial melting stage (when the starch softens and individual pastas tend to stick together). Beyond this and in the presence of a roaring boil further stirring is not required. However, I like to add a couple tablespoons of oil to the water. Even though chefs tell you that it doesn’t touch the pasta, since it is drained out, I believe that everything in the pot, when drained passes through the water and the oil, and that it does make a difference.

If served immediately after draining, rinsing pasta is not necessary, but if you still prefer to do so (as I do), then rinse very quickly under just a little cold water. If you like to toss it with a little melted margarine or olive oil, this is the time to do it.

If serving family style, reserve the hot water that the pasta was cooked in by draining pasta over another large pot. Put the water on the stove to reheat while you serve and eat. If, by the time second helpings become imminent, the pasta has gummed up and stuck together in the serving bowl, take it to the kitchen; submerge it in heated water; redrain and return it to the table. Your guests should enjoy all aspects of their meal–even seconds.

In pasta salads as well as hot pasta and vegetable tosses use at least as many vegetables as pasta. If not, the blandness of the pasta will overwhelm the dish and you will see your guests searching through it for more flavorful morsels.

Regarding fettucini: Fettucini, a popular pasta, is not a recipe, but a shape. Translated from Italian, fettucini means tape-or ribbon-shaped, thereby classifying any flat noodle, regardless of the thickness, length or width as fettucini. Consequently, there is great variation in the market place, ranging from short, thin, narrow noodles to long, thick, wide noodles with varying sizes in between. Some are sold fresh; some prepackaged dried. When called for in a recipe where the dimensions are not given, take into account the other ingredients and select a noodle accordingly. Hearty, robust ingredients and sauces go best with hearty noodles; and delicate ingredients and sauces go best with delicate noodles.

Salting pasta. Always salt your pasta water before cooking pasta. Pastas which are not cooked in salted water are bland and flavorless.

PARTIALLY WILTED

PARTIALLY WILTED. This term is used to describe the cooking of a vegetable or fruit till it just begins to soften, that is, when the firm, crisp cellular structure breaks down and becomes pliable. This is not cooking to very soft, only till partially tender.

PARTIALLY COVERED

PARTIALLY COVERED. This term refers to placing a lid slightly ajar on a pot, saucepan or skillet. The lid should be ajar by approximately 3/4-1 inch, allowing for either: the escape of excess steam or vapors, or the trapping of a portion of the steam or vapors.

ORDER IN WHICH EACH DISH IS SERVED

ORDER IN WHICH EACH DISH IS SERVED. In some meals the order in which each dish is served is critical to the enjoyment of each dish. In other meals the order makes no difference whatsoever.  In this collection, I have noted when it does make a difference. For instance, some salads work best within the framework of the meal when served last. Some work best when served first, or midway, or on the same plate as the main dish. The specific flavor, texture, color and aroma qualities of each dish, and their potencies determine what will go with that dish, and in what order.

Generally, the meal is like a bell curve. You serve the blander dishes at each end of the curve, meaning the appetizer and dessert. The appetizer and/or soup work up to the salad in flavor potency to lead you to the entree, the most complex dish in flavors and textures. The sweet of dessert then eases you down from the excitement of the meal, leaving you contented.

ONIONS

ONIONS. When onions are called for in a recipe, if it doesn’t specify the type, then use any type you like. However, when it does specify, then those recommended have been found to work the best in that recipe.

Sweet vs hot: When sweet onions are called for in a recipe, it refers to large Spanish yellow onions, Maui, Texas, Vidalia, Walla Walla, or others that taste comparably sweet. By using a hot or strong onion in a recipe that calls for sweet, you will be injecting too much onion flavor into that recipe.

However, many so-called sweet onions in the market these days are essentially hot, so when a sweet onion is called for it also refers to the texture and size, since sweet onions are larger than the small garden yellow variety, with thicker petals/layers and a broader bulb.

OLIVE OILS

OLIVE OILS range in flavor from very mild to clearly distinct, with mild dishes generally requiring a mild oil, and spicy dishes a more flavorful one. But experiment with different varieties and combinations to discover your own preferences.

In Italy, olive oils are graded according to their pressing and acidity level. The first pressing, if done without heat or any other treatment is classified as virgin. This is the highest grade. Within the virgin category the oil is also graded for acidity. Extra virgin olive oil, considered to be the finest of the virgins, contains the least amount of acid found naturally in the oil: 1% or less. In Greece 1% or less is sometimes referred to as extra, extra virgin.

Store olive oil at room temperature. Cooling the oil congeals it, so if you make a dressing that needs to be refrigerated, bring to room temperature to melt before using.

NON-DAIRY LIQUID CREAMER

NON-DAIRY LIQUID CREAMER. I use non-dairy liquid creamer freely in my kitchen. It is a superb product, tasting much like real cream.

Depending upon where you live in the country, brand names will vary. Locate in the dairy section of the market.

Much to my dismay, this product is no longer available in Cleveland, Ohio. There is a product called Rich’s Coffee Creamer that is sold frozen in some markets. It can substitute for skim milk, regular milk or cream depending on whether you add water to it.

It thaws well, but again it’s not in all grocery markets.

Animal-free chefs need a non-dairy creamer to make white sauces and puddings. Soy milk, cashew milk and almond milk, although great for many uses, isn’t generally rich enough for vegetable sauces or desserts. And, they usually are sweet and have a vanilla component, which aren’t conducive to savory cream sauces.

In whole food markets I’ve seen occasionally a suitable creamer, but it comes only in pints, and isn’t always available in the same market, and readily available elsewhere.

COFFEE RICH CONVERSION CHART 2

rich's creamer

RICH'S WHIP CREAM 1

http://richwhip.com






ALTERING RECIPES

ALTERING RECIPES. There are two common temptations to alter a recipe. First: If we have a little bit extra of an ingredient we’ll add it to the dish rather than discard or store it. Please don’t add a little extra of anything no matter what the reason. Freeze it, store it, dump it. Do anything but upset the balance of the recipe. It’s not worth ruining a dish over, and an extra handful of some ingredients can do just that. If you feel strongly about throwing bits of food away, then store them in a covered container in your refrigerator throughout the week. At the end of the week challenge yourself by doing something creative with them.

The second temptation to alter a recipe is that we have preconceived notions of how much spice we’re going to allow ourselves to use in any given recipe, regardless of the recommendation. For instance, we’ll say to ourselves.”Oh, I don’t think I’ll like that much curry, so I’ll use just a dash”, instead of the recommended tablespoon. By doing this we deprive ourselves of new taste experiences, which is what cooking animal-free is all about. I understand that for some of you, trying something new will take a little or even a lot of courage. But accept the challenge and develop a sense of adventure by allowing yourself the freedom to try something different. You might just like it. Let your palate be the judge.

More importantly though, by changing the amount of spice in a recipe to suit what you think you’ll like or dislike, especially if you change it by a significant amount, you attempt to convert a spicy dish to a bland one (if you reduce the amount of spice), or a bland dish to a spicy one (if you increase the amount of spice). Frankly, this cannot be done successfully without altering the other ingredients in a recipe. Why is this so? Because a spicy dish is built around ingredients that support the spice, and a bland dish around ingredients that depend more upon the ingredients than the spice for flavor. So, it’s best to keep a bland dish bland, and a spicy dish spicy. Then you pick and choose those which you like.

Now, to get back to measurement of a different sort. It is a good idea to keep a ruler in the kitchen in case you forgot what 1/4, 1/2, or 1 inch looks like; and that’s pretty easy to do, especially when you get down to very small measurements. Get accustomed to measurement, since this is my primary way of communicating with you.

LIQUID SMOKE

LIQUID SMOKE. Liquid smoke is one of an animal-free chef’s greatest friends.

Use to add a rich smoky dimension to dips, spreads, salad dressings, soups, sauces, main dishes.

Always keep on hand. Buy in small bottle in grocery store, or as I do now, a larger bottle from GFS (Gordon’s Food Store).

LIQUID FLOUR

LIQUID FLOUR. You may notice that when using a thickener for a sauce or soup, I do not use a roux (the cooking of margarine with flour till thick and golden brown). Instead, I use a liquid flour, obtained by combining a measured amount of water or broth and flour in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. It is shaken vigorously till blended, then added to the sauce or soup, which is then stirred continuously over medium heat till thickened. I find this method easy, convenient and trouble-free.

When combining the water and flour in the jar, always add the water first so that the flour won’t stick to the bottom of the jar.

Do not put hot liquid in the jar; it could explode when shaken. Rinse jar immediately after using to make cleaning easier.

LEGUMES

LEGUMES. You might think that dried split peas or lentils are all the same because they look the same, and consequently will all cook up the same. Not true. Split peas are as different as any other vegetable is to its own kind. Not all tomatoes are the same, so why should we expect all legumes to be the same? Some lentils, for instance, take a shorter time to cook than other lentils. Some are more tender, moist, flavorful and fragrant. It’s the nature of all grown food. So, the pea soup that cooked in one hour this week, may take one and a half hours or more next month, when using peas from a different harvest.

When cooking legumes or any dried bean, don’t add salt to the water until the legume/bean is thoroughly cooked to your liking. It’s not the same as cooking pasta.

Once the legume/bean is plump, adding salt will not draw moisture from the legume/bean.

Adding salt before they’re plump will lengthen cooking time, as the salt simultaneously tries to draw liquid from the legume/bean as the legume/bean is trying to draw the water into them.

HEATED PLATES

HEATED PLATES enhance the quality of cooked meals. Heat oven to 275 degrees and place oven-proof plates in oven till ready to use–a minimum of 10 minutes. Use pot holders to remove, and alert guests to hot plates.

GUESTS

GUESTS. Since eating is one of the most important functions in life (eating is what keeps us alive), we approach it with a desire to make each experience–whether for 1 or 21–the happiest and most healthful experience ever. Therefore everyone is treated as a guest–including family.

GRATING HORSERADISH

GRATING HORSERADISH. Always peel horseradish before grating it, whether you use it in a dish or to garnish one. Grate on small holes of the grater as you need it. If grated ahead it will dry out. When peeling, peel only the section you will be grating. The remainder of the horseradish will stay fresher longer that way.

CRYSTALLIZED GINGER

CRYSTALLIZED GINGER. Sugar-coated dried ginger slices, also called candied ginger, are called for in some recipes. Purchase anywhere they sell dried fruits in containers usually packaged by the supermarket chains.

It also makes a great snack food – good way to get the benefits of ginger in a tasty treat.

SQUEEZING GINGER FOR GINGER JUICE

SQUEEZING GINGER FOR GINGER JUICE. When you don’t want to insert the texture of fresh ginger into a recipe, but still want the fresh ginger taste, this is an easy way to juice the ginger!

Wash extra large piece of ginger. Break into 2 or 3 pieces, breaking pieces off at the joints. Place in tightly sealed plastic bag and freeze. When you need ginger juice, remove one of the segments from the freezer and place in bowl to thaw. When totally thawed ginger will be soft. Simply squeeze the ginger over the bowl and the juice will squirt out. Keep squeezing till all liquid has been removed. Either use immediately or pour into small covered jar and refrigerate till ready to use.

Use in salad dressings, stir-fries, rice dishes, soups, desserts etc. in place of fresh chopped ginger or ginger powder.

To make ginger tea, boil water, fill tea cup, then add as much ginger juice as you like.

COOKING SURFACE

COOKING SURFACE: When doubling or tripling a recipe, expect all the ingredients to take longer to cook. In large recipes the amount of ingredient surface exposed to direct heat is less than with smaller recipes where a greater percentage of  ingredient surface is exposed to the heat, thereby cooking the ingredients faster. Any time you have food setting on top of food, or deep pots of soups or sauces, cooking times of all ingredients and throughout each step of the cooking process lengthens.