First Time Chef

Life long foodie

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To sweat or not to sweat
What the hell is sweating an Eggplant? 
So today I decided to make baked eggplant parm. Mmm. So I looked up a recipe, just to make sure my steps were in step. 
http://allrecipes.com/recipe/eggplant-parmesan-ii/
I seem to use the site a lot. I always read the comments to see how people changed the recipe. I think that’s a really good idea, because most of the time, people who have changed the recipe, either by adding something in or taking something away, are right. 
One comment said, “Sweat the eggplant.”
What ? Now, I have eaten a lot of eggplant in my day. I’ve watched my mom make eggplant. Not once, ever, have I heard her or seen her “sweat” an eggplant. 
So I did some research. As always, someone had already asked the infamous users of yahoo this question:
http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20080102143255AAm8dJS
“Best Answer - Chosen by Voters
You can enhance the tenderness and flavor of your eggplant through “sweating”, a process that reduces water content, making the eggplant less permeable to absorbing cooking oil. To sweat, first cut to the desired size and shape, salt, then let sit for approximately 30 minutes and rinse to remove excess salt. ”
So I have decided to try this. It’s quite easy to do. I’m letting the eggplant “sweat” while the sauce is simmering right now. Looking forward to tasting the “sweated” eggplant. I’m curious to see how it is different.

To sweat or not to sweat

What the hell is sweating an Eggplant? 

So today I decided to make baked eggplant parm. Mmm. So I looked up a recipe, just to make sure my steps were in step. 

http://allrecipes.com/recipe/eggplant-parmesan-ii/

I seem to use the site a lot. I always read the comments to see how people changed the recipe. I think that’s a really good idea, because most of the time, people who have changed the recipe, either by adding something in or taking something away, are right. 

One comment said, “Sweat the eggplant.”

What ? Now, I have eaten a lot of eggplant in my day. I’ve watched my mom make eggplant. Not once, ever, have I heard her or seen her “sweat” an eggplant. 

So I did some research. As always, someone had already asked the infamous users of yahoo this question:

http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20080102143255AAm8dJS

Best Answer - Chosen by Voters

You can enhance the tenderness and flavor of your eggplant through “sweating”, a process that reduces water content, making the eggplant less permeable to absorbing cooking oil. To sweat, first cut to the desired size and shape, salt, then let sit for approximately 30 minutes and rinse to remove excess salt. ”

So I have decided to try this. It’s quite easy to do. I’m letting the eggplant “sweat” while the sauce is simmering right now. Looking forward to tasting the “sweated” eggplant. I’m curious to see how it is different.

Filed under Sweating eggplant eggplant parmesian

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So I have made this pie 3 times and this is the worst it has ever looked - but this is the best it has ever tasted. My dough, my dough my dough…i waited to long to use it, I think.It wouldn’t roll. I tried more ice water, but to no avail. So I did the best I could with what I had.
I always use this recipe:
http://allrecipes.com/recipe/apple-pie-by-grandma-ople/
The pie on the site looks somewhat better than mine, but I bet mine tastes better. I change the recipe each time I use it. I tried to look at the reviews and see what other people did to it. The first 2 times I made the pie I followed the recipe. The first time, the pie looked similar to this. The second time, I used all of the apples in the recipe and it came out like a big mound. So this time, I thought I would use a little less apples to see what happened. I think it’s better tasting without the monstrous amount of apples.
This time, I also added some things that I hadn’t previously. To the syrup, I added nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves. I think they really changed up the way the pie tastes. Those ingredients SHOULD ALWAYS be used. DO NOT FORGET THEM. In my opinion they are what make the pie.
I have to work on my presentation (and my lattice top - I know, I know, it’s not lattice, but because the dough was so  messed up, I had to do it this way). Surprisingly, even though the dough was EXTREMELY hard to work with, it ended up tasting pretty good. I brushed the top of the pie, the “lattice” part with butter and I think that’s what ended up saving it.
This recipe is amazing, as long as you add the few extras to it. Good luck. 

So I have made this pie 3 times and this is the worst it has ever looked - but this is the best it has ever tasted. My dough, my dough my dough…i waited to long to use it, I think.It wouldn’t roll. I tried more ice water, but to no avail. So I did the best I could with what I had.

I always use this recipe:

http://allrecipes.com/recipe/apple-pie-by-grandma-ople/

The pie on the site looks somewhat better than mine, but I bet mine tastes better. I change the recipe each time I use it. I tried to look at the reviews and see what other people did to it. The first 2 times I made the pie I followed the recipe. The first time, the pie looked similar to this. The second time, I used all of the apples in the recipe and it came out like a big mound. So this time, I thought I would use a little less apples to see what happened. I think it’s better tasting without the monstrous amount of apples.

This time, I also added some things that I hadn’t previously. To the syrup, I added nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves. I think they really changed up the way the pie tastes. Those ingredients SHOULD ALWAYS be used. DO NOT FORGET THEM. In my opinion they are what make the pie.

I have to work on my presentation (and my lattice top - I know, I know, it’s not lattice, but because the dough was so  messed up, I had to do it this way). Surprisingly, even though the dough was EXTREMELY hard to work with, it ended up tasting pretty good. I brushed the top of the pie, the “lattice” part with butter and I think that’s what ended up saving it.

This recipe is amazing, as long as you add the few extras to it. Good luck. 

Filed under apple pie

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Easy delicious pie crust

Every time I make a pie I use this recipe. It’s easy and it is delicious. It’s a classic. It can be found here:
http://m.crisco.com/Recipes/Details/1242
Right now, I’m getting ready to make an apple pie. Usually, I go apple picking in the fall and make a pie from those apples. Obviously, it’s not apple picking season, so I’m going to have to use store bought. After I make the actual pie I will post the recipe. I like to overnight the crust in the fridge before I use it.
I’m making the pie for Easter. Although, I don’t know if Easter is known for apple pies like thanksgiving is. I was in the mood and someone always brings a crappy store made apple pie to every holiday, so I figure I’ll make a nice fresh one instead. 

Tip: put the water in one tsp at a time. The recipe says to put half of 8 in and then see if you need more. Put it in one at a time and mix. I only used 5 and a half tsp of water. Sometimes it is more, sometimes less. I don’t know why that is. Maybe it has something to do with the weather.

Easy delicious pie crust

Every time I make a pie I use this recipe. It’s easy and it is delicious. It’s a classic. It can be found here:
http://m.crisco.com/Recipes/Details/1242
Right now, I’m getting ready to make an apple pie. Usually, I go apple picking in the fall and make a pie from those apples. Obviously, it’s not apple picking season, so I’m going to have to use store bought. After I make the actual pie I will post the recipe. I like to overnight the crust in the fridge before I use it.
I’m making the pie for Easter. Although, I don’t know if Easter is known for apple pies like thanksgiving is. I was in the mood and someone always brings a crappy store made apple pie to every holiday, so I figure I’ll make a nice fresh one instead.

Tip: put the water in one tsp at a time. The recipe says to put half of 8 in and then see if you need more. Put it in one at a time and mix. I only used 5 and a half tsp of water. Sometimes it is more, sometimes less. I don’t know why that is. Maybe it has something to do with the weather.

Filed under crust pie dough easy

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Chorizo and kale

I love kale. I love chorizo. Put them together and you have a marriage made in taste bd heaven. 

1/2 pound chorizo
8 oz of kale
A coating of olive oil on the pan
Salt and pepper to taste 
1/4 cup chicken stock
Garlic!

So simple. Heat up a skillet And coat it with olive oil. Throw in some garlic  i like ALOT of garlic so i threw in about four cloves diced  Throw in the chorizo. Cook for 3 mins.

Add the chicken stock and kale. Cook for 5 more minutes. Season with salt and pepper. 

Easy. 

I decided I was in the mood for tacos. I thought, what’s better than chorizo and kale tacos? I cut up some tomatoes (I like the gourmet medley ones…they have yellow, red, purplish and orange tomatoes). I mixes the tomatoes up with half an avocado. 

I heated up shells in the oven. I piled the chorizo and kale in then topped it off with the avocado and tomato mixture. Tada! Delicious. No need for lettuce, in my opinion because the kale is like a substitute for that.

Chorizo and kale

I love kale. I love chorizo. Put them together and you have a marriage made in taste bd heaven.

1/2 pound chorizo
8 oz of kale
A coating of olive oil on the pan
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup chicken stock
Garlic!

So simple. Heat up a skillet And coat it with olive oil. Throw in some garlic i like ALOT of garlic so i threw in about four cloves diced Throw in the chorizo. Cook for 3 mins.

Add the chicken stock and kale. Cook for 5 more minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Easy.

I decided I was in the mood for tacos. I thought, what’s better than chorizo and kale tacos? I cut up some tomatoes (I like the gourmet medley ones…they have yellow, red, purplish and orange tomatoes). I mixes the tomatoes up with half an avocado.

I heated up shells in the oven. I piled the chorizo and kale in then topped it off with the avocado and tomato mixture. Tada! Delicious. No need for lettuce, in my opinion because the kale is like a substitute for that.

Filed under chorizo kale homemade dinner easy tacos

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Extremely easy corn beef and cabbage recipe! I only had 2 pounds of corn beef, but the recipe I used says it’s for four pounds. I played with the numbers a little. http://allrecipes.com/recipe/guinness-corned-beef/ I used about 3/4 cup brown sugar and 6 fl oz of Guinness. The most important thing is to cook the corn beef in the Guinness. Also, I used that much brown sugar, because I like it sweet. Use less if looking for something less sweet. I like how the sweetness cut the saltiness. I had noticed in the comments that someone said not to use the spices that come with the corn beef. I read it too late and had already used the spices. I think it came out good with the spices. I think without the spices it may have been too sweet. I’m curious to try it that way. I slow cooked it on high for 8 hours. About 7 hours in, I chopped up the cabbage and places it in the slow cooker with the corn beef. That was an amazing decision, because that was the best cabbage I had ever had. This is probably the only recipe I would ever use. I am looking forward to having a leftover corn beef and cabbage sandwich. Yum!

Extremely easy corn beef and cabbage recipe! I only had 2 pounds of corn beef, but the recipe I used says it’s for four pounds. I played with the numbers a little. http://allrecipes.com/recipe/guinness-corned-beef/ I used about 3/4 cup brown sugar and 6 fl oz of Guinness. The most important thing is to cook the corn beef in the Guinness. Also, I used that much brown sugar, because I like it sweet. Use less if looking for something less sweet. I like how the sweetness cut the saltiness. I had noticed in the comments that someone said not to use the spices that come with the corn beef. I read it too late and had already used the spices. I think it came out good with the spices. I think without the spices it may have been too sweet. I’m curious to try it that way. I slow cooked it on high for 8 hours. About 7 hours in, I chopped up the cabbage and places it in the slow cooker with the corn beef. That was an amazing decision, because that was the best cabbage I had ever had. This is probably the only recipe I would ever use. I am looking forward to having a leftover corn beef and cabbage sandwich. Yum!

Filed under Corn Beef Guinness Cabbage Beer Recipe

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Sea food fra diavolo I was in the mood for scallops, but ended up buying shrimp too. I needed a good recipe for both of those items, so I thought about my favorite shrimp pasta and added the scallops to it. I started by making the sauce first. I sautéed some garlic and added 1 can of whole tomatoes. I like my sauce thick, so I added 1 whole can of tomato paste, but it wasn’t necessary. I added about 1/2 cup of red wine, some oregano, basil, salt and pepper to taste. I usually use fresh basil but I didn’t have any so I had to substitute with dry. With the dry basil, I just use extra, in order to get that basily taste. I also added two more pieces of garlic and one packet of Splenda, because that was the only sugar I had. That cuts the acidic tas. I let the sauce sit while I peeled and deveined my shrimp. I hate veiny shrimp. One time I heard that the vein was shrimp poop. I dont know if that is true or false, but I need to devein mine now. This was the first time I cooked shrimp, but I knew that I just needed them to turn pink on each side. I chopped some more garlic and sautéed the shrimp. When they turned pink, I dumps them in the sauce. Then I sautéed the scallops and dumped them in the sauce, too. I tastes he sauce and noticed it was a tad too fishy for my liking, so I added a little more wine and another packet of Splenda. Viola! Perfection. I let it simmer and got the pasta ready. Usually people use linguini or spaghetti or angel hair, but I’m starting to get Adventurous with my pastas. I used gemelli. I started to boil the water. I threw in oil and salt. I like my pasta real al dented, so once the water boiled, I added the pasta and cooked it for 10 minutes. Once the pasta cooked, I took a ladle of the water and mixed it in the sauce. I drained the pasta and I was done! I paired it with a Pinot Grigio ( love the Grigio) and enjoyed that delicious meal!

Sea food fra diavolo I was in the mood for scallops, but ended up buying shrimp too. I needed a good recipe for both of those items, so I thought about my favorite shrimp pasta and added the scallops to it. I started by making the sauce first. I sautéed some garlic and added 1 can of whole tomatoes. I like my sauce thick, so I added 1 whole can of tomato paste, but it wasn’t necessary. I added about 1/2 cup of red wine, some oregano, basil, salt and pepper to taste. I usually use fresh basil but I didn’t have any so I had to substitute with dry. With the dry basil, I just use extra, in order to get that basily taste. I also added two more pieces of garlic and one packet of Splenda, because that was the only sugar I had. That cuts the acidic tas. I let the sauce sit while I peeled and deveined my shrimp. I hate veiny shrimp. One time I heard that the vein was shrimp poop. I dont know if that is true or false, but I need to devein mine now. This was the first time I cooked shrimp, but I knew that I just needed them to turn pink on each side. I chopped some more garlic and sautéed the shrimp. When they turned pink, I dumps them in the sauce. Then I sautéed the scallops and dumped them in the sauce, too. I tastes he sauce and noticed it was a tad too fishy for my liking, so I added a little more wine and another packet of Splenda. Viola! Perfection. I let it simmer and got the pasta ready. Usually people use linguini or spaghetti or angel hair, but I’m starting to get Adventurous with my pastas. I used gemelli. I started to boil the water. I threw in oil and salt. I like my pasta real al dented, so once the water boiled, I added the pasta and cooked it for 10 minutes. Once the pasta cooked, I took a ladle of the water and mixed it in the sauce. I drained the pasta and I was done! I paired it with a Pinot Grigio ( love the Grigio) and enjoyed that delicious meal!

Filed under Pasta shrimp scallops sea food homemade sauce italian