Fantastic wireless thermometer for the BBQ or grill

Digital thermometers are a great tool when slow cooking meat.

It is pretty easy to under or overcook meat on the grill. Monitoring the internal temperature of your food, as you cook it, is a really good way to be sure that food is as done as you want it and no more. This affordable ThermoPen set-up does the trick for me.

I like to use one probe at the grate and one inside the item I am cooking. That way I know what is going on!

ThermoPro TP-08S Wireless Remote Digital Cooking Meat Thermometer Dual Probe for Grilling Smoker BBQ Food Thermometer - Monitors Food from 300 Feet Away via Amazon Read the rest

Honey whole wheat sourdough pizza dough

Last night I made honey whole wheat sourdough pizza crust. It was quite good.

As a kid, there was a pizza place in my hometown that made a deep-dish pizza with a whole wheat crust. It was great, I tried and I couldn't replicate it. Then I substituted honey instead of sugar.

This simple crust is good.

Honey Whole Wheat Sourdough Pizza Dough

1 cup bread flour 1 cup whole wheat flour ½ cup sourdough starter 1 ½ tsp salt 3 tbs honey 1 ½ tbs olive oil ½ cup water

First: Mix ½ cup water, ½ cup starter, oil and the honey. Let sit while you measure out the dry goods and combine them all. Depending on your flour, and your starter, you may need to add a little flour to the mix to get a good consistency. Stop when it feels like the dough that you want to roll out.

Second: Leave it alone, probably covered, for 45-60 minutes. Refrigerate to store or use right away.

Bake at 475F or higher for 20 min, deep-dish. Probably the same for thin crust.

I have been using this dough for the crust of my deep-dish pizza, but you can easily roll it out for super-thin, Neapolitan stuff too.

Unless you do roll it super thin, I doubt this crust is going to get super cracker crisp, as it is sourdough and will retain more chew the longer you let it rise. Read the rest

Christopher Walken shows us how to cook an upright chicken with pears

This clip is from 2007. I have yet to prepare Christopher Walken's upright chicken with pears but I have enjoyed this video several times.

(via r/ObscureMedia) Read the rest

My old Lodge chicken roasting pan bakes sourdough loaves, pizza and fries chicken

I gave my mother my treasured 5-quart Lodge deep skillet and lid when I found a lovely antique to restore. I've been using it while visiting with them.

It was no easy thing when I gave my Mom my Lodge chicken pan. I had been using it for ages as my primary skillet and perfected fried chicken in it, as many of my colleagues here at Boing Boing will attest.

I have been instructed that his style skillet be called a chicken ROASTING pan and the lid's stalactite-like points are what makes it a 'self-basting' lid. Evidently 1 roaster size chicken (3-5lbs iirc) will fit in it, and with the lid on the bird will roast up nice and juicy.

I have never done this. I bought it to fry chicken. I learned it was awesome for frying eggs, bacon, pancake and sauteeing things. It became the most used item in my kitchen. Then I started baking in it like a Dutch Oven.

The Lodge ended its daily use, however, when I found a larger Wagner pan at the Goodwill and restored it. I started baking in my dutch oven. It is a bit easier to maneuver. When cast iron sits and isn't used, it needs to be used and this pan was truly special. I tried alternating between it and my Wagner, but the extra space and smoother finish of the Wagner kept it on my stove. It was a little easier to fry bacon and sear steaks and fish in the #9 vs the #8 pan. Read the rest

My mother makes perfect rice in the microwave with this steamer lid

Mom put this lid over a glass bowl and nuked the shit out of that rice for 20 minutes. I'm pretty sure there was water in there.

It was effortless and perfect.

These are easy to clean, amazingly reusable, wonderful in place of plastic wrap over a bowl and all kinds of great as a frisbee.

Agile-Shop Steam Ship Silicone Steamer Lid Food Covers, Pack of 3 via Amazon Read the rest

My first attempt at smoking meat on a compact bullet smoker

Smoking my dinner is the latest in slow 'n low cooking for me.

My brother, the actual bonafide chef in the family, got me addicted to smoking meat. While I've long been an enthusiast of sous-vide cooking, Brother Ben swears by his offset smoker. After visiting with his family for a bit, and eating a lot of barbeque, I was sold.

Smoking uses the same principles as sous-vide and also imparts a smokey flavor to your food. Thick, tangy and overpowering smoke, or just very delicate -- the choice is yours, sort of. Rather than immersing your food in a temperature monitored water bath, ala sous vide, smoking surrounds the food in warm smoke. You can find temperate controlled systems to make it a lot easier but that removes the fun of playing with fire for hours and hours.

Sous vide is easy, however, you plug in a circulator, put your meat in a plastic bag and away you go. Can smoking meat be as easy? After eating a few delicious meals of smoked salmon, turkey, pork and beef at my brother's, I wanted to spend my long days hanging around a campsite, living la vida Vanagon, smoking meat.

Offset, upright, pellet, gas, electric? What kind of smoker was the right one for me? My brother and I started watching lots of YouTube videos and it looked like a 'bullet smoker' also known as a 'water smoker' was the right way to go, for me. Bullet smokers have a fire right at the bottom, a water bath in the middle and a smoke/cooking chamber up top. Read the rest

Stove top pressure cookers are still awesome

The classic pressure cooker was the instant pot before there was an instant pot.

Want to turn shoe-leather style brisket into a wonderful pulled-beef sandwich filling in 25 minutes? Get out the pressure cooker. Simply throw food in the pot, make sure you've got a good seal, and let it cook.

This pressure cooker easily stores with your pots and pans. It is simple to clean, easy to use and I haven't found anything that makes me wish for an instant pot.

A pressure cooker has been a fantastic addition to my car camping kit.

T-fal P2614634 Secure Aluminum Initiatives 12-PSI Pressure Cooker Cookware, 6-Quart, Siver via Amazon Read the rest

Is this the best way to peel garlic?

Hold a bulb of garlic in one hand, a paring knife in the other. Jab the knife into a clove and lever it out of the husk.

Image: Twitter Read the rest

Howto: make better salads

Bon Appetit's 20-tip roundup of salad-making tips is full of culinary wisdom, from the mechanical (how to use a salad-spinner properly and how to apply dressing for a good, even coat that doesn't turn delicates to mush) to the chemical (using salt to tenderize raw cabbage) to the culinary (toast your nuts, put chopped veg in your dressing, mix your vinegars). It's a great and timely piece for anyone getting ready to enjoy the summer's garden veg or anyone trying to get kids to eat more veggies. (via Kottke) Read the rest

Do not bring a duffel bag full of 40 vacuum-sealed frozen piranhas into LAX

A famous chef tried to haul a duffel bag full of 40 vacuum-sealed, frozen piranhas into Los Angeles for a cooking competition. Read the rest

Justin Wilson's "gar-on-tee"

I had misassigned the "Gar-On-Tee" to Chef Paul Prudhomme for some reason. Justin Wilson is the chef who filled my kitchen with empty promises. Read the rest

I want to go to the cast iron market in Brimfeld, Mass

I want to go there.

My favorite pan is a Wagner I got at Goodwill in San Francisco.

I especially like to refinish cast iron waffle irons.

(Thanks, David Wolfberg!) Read the rest

Of pasta and patents

According to the Encyclopedia of Pasta, there are hundreds of pasta shapes. At Smithsonian, Elizabeth Chu and D. Lawrence Tarazano of the US Patent Office look at relatively recent machinery to crank out the floury forms. From Smithsonian:

The various shapes can be categorized based on the means by which they are formed: by hand, rolled into sheets, or extruded. For each pasta making method, there have been a number of inventions to ease and mechanize the process.

Pastas formed by hand have been the most difficult to replicate by machine because of the complexity of the actions done by hand. Cavatelli, gnocchi and orecchiette, for example, are made by rolling pasta dough by hand into a long snake shape, cutting it into equal sized dough pieces, and dragging the dough to form a cup like shape. With cavatelli and gnocchi, the dough is dragged against a fork or grooved surface with a thumb to form a curled dough piece in the shape of a hot dog bun; the only real difference between the two is the dough. Gnocchi is made from a dough containing eggs, flour and cooked potatoes, whereas cavatelli are typically made from an eggless semolina wheat dough. Orecchiette, Italian for “little ear,” are made by dragging the dough pieces against a flat surface using a small spatula or knife, followed by a little hand shaping to round it out.

Italian inventors Franco Annicchiarico and Adima Pilari, who received U.S. patent no. 4,822,271 on April 18, 1989 for “an improved machine for manufacturing short cut varieties of Italian pasta (orecchiette, etc.),” developed a machine for making these cupped pastas.

Read the rest

Celebrity chef attempts DIY Pringles

Pringles are my favorite chip. In this Bon Appétit video, chef Claire Saffitz attempts to make them herself. Even if she nailed the form and the flavor, I don't think her technique would scale in my household. Admittedly, once I pop, I can't stop. Read the rest

Epicurious has a video explainer on brownies that takes the cake and delivers the fudge

I wanted to make fudgy brownies. Read the rest

Holy fudge is there conflicting information online about inducing brownie 'cakeyness'

I want fudgy brownies. Read the rest

Hot Cheetos Thanksgiving Turkey

Do you like Flaming Hot Cheetos? Well, heck. Why not enjoy a Flaming Hot Cheetos Thanksgiving turkey dinner with the whole family this year. Read the rest

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