July 15, 2013

10 Food Rules Worth Breaking

Some food rules are worth breaking says Adam Roberts, a chef and cookbook author. For example, you no longer have to rinse chicken before cooking it as the heat kills germs and rinsing just makes it soggy. Even better, he discusses the rules on using wine in cooking in a common sense way: the wine should be something slightly “less good that the one you’d want to drink with dinner, but certainly better than Two Buck Chuck”. The same logic applies to chocolate. Roberts showcases 10 food rules cooks no longer have to follow including photos and links to recipes.

Read the full article here:
10 Food Rules Worth Breaking

food rules

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July 3, 2013

Your SMART Kitchen is Closing — Time to Buy What You Need

It was not an easy decision, but Your Smart Kitchen, your online source for both quality cookware products and information regarding cooking and kitchens, is in the process of shutting down.

The term “Your SMART Kitchen” means more than just how and what to cook. Smart cookware, cutlery and kitchen appliances make a smart kitchen. It is the kind of kitchen where people can gather to talk, to help and to cook, or the center of the social activities for your home. Time to buy what you need.

Two sizes of frying pans. These may be stainless steel (we suggest Fissler), cast iron or non-stick ( with PFOE a free finish such as Woll Diamond’s Plus). Typically, starting with one non-stick and one stainless steel and adding others as your requirements grow is recommended.

romertopf

One Dutch oven that is able to go from the top of the stove into the oven. There is more versatility with enamel coated Dutch ovens and they will not affect soups, sauces or other long cooking dishes.

romertopf

One small and one larger stockpot for pasta, poaching chicken, and other items. While the are a number of cheaper aluminum options, stainless steel pots with a substantial base will provide better results and last a lot longer.

Sauté or sauce pans can fill these requirements for needs up to around 3 or 4 quart sizes.

A large stainless steel or non-stick roaster is useful for holidays and large family gatherings.

romertopf

One item that is not frequently thought of but is quite versatile and useful is a clay baker which can be used for a wide array of meat and fish dishes as well as vegetables, bread for even deserts.

Grab the 13% off on already discounted prices on pots and pans, cutlery, bakeware, kitchen appliances and related kitchenware specializing in FISSLER, MARIO BATALI, CHASSEUR, WOLL Nonstick, and other leading brands. Visit Your SMART Kitchen now.

Chefwannabee

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June 1, 2013

Five Cooking Mistakes to Avoid in the Kitchen

In many instances, the urge to get cooking leads people to start preparing a dish without a clear sense of the exact steps they should take. Hot pans or a grill, for example, the heat from the pan or grill is transferred to the food through direct contact or touching. The food has to reach a certain temperature (depending on what you’re cooking) in order to reach doneness.

Hot pans are cool, unless your recipe gives you specific instruction to do otherwise, give your pan (and any oil you’ve added) a little time to heat up before adding any food. There’s a simple solution for the many mistakes .

gas-burner

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Seasonal Foods : Spring’s Healthiest Swaps

Spring marks the first sign of summer produce – cherries and strawberries all begin as early as April, with a very brief apricot harvest following in May, and ending by June. Plums, apriums, and pluots all begin their harvest in May and June as well. New potatoes begin to crop up around this time as well. Fresh pastured eggs should become more plentiful, since hens unexposed to artificial light will produce more eggs as the days lengthen.

The bounty of greens arriving at farmers’ markets this time of year makes it a great time to trade in your tried-and-true healthy foods for something new.

spring

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May 26, 2013

Reviewing Stew Pots – A May Special

You want each and every stew stewed…overflowing with great chunks, intense flavors and a large helping of appetite! What’s more, homemade one pot meals like these are endless! Stock pots or stew pots are a necessary tool to make all this possible. It’s the type of cookware with a multitude of uses from making soup stock, of course, to preparing stews, tomato sauces and chili.

The best thing about a stock pot is the possibility of cooking just about anything on it. A larger stock pot will be able to better serve larger recipes and a wider variety of entrees for your friends and family. Stock pots are the predecessor to crock pots and provide a handy implement for slow cooking and wonderful winter meals and dinners.

Fissler Solea Stockpot

afissler

Our Solea high stew pot (click here to see product video) produces a stock pot that can cook perfect meals in a busy household. The stainless steel construction ensures durability and long life. An aluminum core allows for even heat distribution and even cooking over the surface area. This Solea high stew pot has a fully encapsulated cookstar all-stove base which is comprised of a pure aluminum core and high-quality 18/10 stainless steel, ensures that the base will never separate or warp. The energy-saving base also provides quick optimal heat distribution and diffusion without any hot spots. Safe for use on any kind of stove, including induction.

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Chef Batali’s extremely versatile cast iron Dutch oven is another great addition to your kitchen. When used for slow simmering stews or roasts your meat will come out fork tender. It also is excellent for frying and searing at high heat. It’s unique lid with interior spikes insures a continuous natural basting. Mario Batali cast iron Dutch oven collection are great for starter cooks and experienced chefs. Experiment with some new recipes and discover the joys of stock pot cooking. Stocks are not only used for soups but can be incorporated into sauces and roasts to keep in moisture and add a new dimension to your entrees and recipes.

If a 12-qt stock pot is too large for your needs in the kitchen then get an 8-qt capacity featuring the same construction and heat retention. Regardless of size, these stockpots are highly polished and designed for the aesthetic beauty of your kitchen. Remember presentation is very important. They are also oven proof; meaning you can place the stock pots directly in the oven to create new and exciting entrees and recipes at home. Not to mention they are ergonomically designed to provide greater comfort during preparation.

From the very beginning, my kids wanted every pot of stewed meals. It makes them feel so homemade; delicious, full of proper chunks and really gratifying.

At Your Smart Kitchen we are trying to think a bit beyond normal to make every day a bit easier in the kitchen. In addition, for our newsletter readers we are make it 13% off the discounted price through the use of a coupon available only for you.

Before deciding to buy your next cookware, I think this is a good read to help you decide. Basic Tips When Buying a New Cookware for Your Home

Good luck!

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May 17, 2013

Why Cooking with Your Grandkids Matter

Cooking a dish or even a whole meal from scratch with grandkids offers benefits beyond just the tasty results. It imparts all sorts of important knowledge about math, science and basic cooking techniques; it teaches them about good food; it’s a great way to bond; it fuels creativity and builds their confidence in and out of the kitchen; and it gives them lifetime values.

Taking the lead comes naturally for many grandparents, who tend to have more patience than parents. Kids are free to dip fingers in the frosting bowl and flour on the floor before, so they can let kids feel like they’re getting away with breaking the rules without suffering any consequences. Read more.

grandkids

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May 7, 2013

The Most Energy-Efficient Cooking Method

You can implement a couple of simple ideas to save on your bills by changing the way you cook, as well as using energy-efficient cooking appliances that can reduce the amount of energy you use and cut your energy bills in the process.

The most basic steps that I can recommend are: turning down the ring or burner once the cooking temperature or state is reached; simmer food rather than boiling it. Another is to keep the oven closed while you’re cooking. Why? Because each time you open the door the oven loses heat and requires more energy to get back up to temperature.

Basic yet so interestingly helpful. In fact, those basics are what we need to understand and why. Read the tips.

energy efficient

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April 10, 2013

Chicken Tagine with Dates Recipe

This cracking spicy stew from Angela Harnett, combines different types of meat and fruit. This flavor-rich recipe is perfect for slow-cooking cuts – so try replacing the chicken with lamb shanks or beef shin.

Angela Hartnett's chicken tagine with dates.
Half a teaspoon each of the following:

-Ground cumin; dried chilli; ginger powder; ground coriander
-8 chicken thighs
-30ml vegetable oil
-2 cloves of garlic, chopped
-1 bunch spring onions, sliced
-200g dates, pitted
-1 400g tin of tomatoes
-Fresh coriander, chopped

Directions:

Combine the dried spices, rub half of the mix over the chicken and cover for 10 minutes. Warm the vegetable oil in a pan, season the chicken and colour it for around five minutes. Remove the chicken, add the garlic and the spring onions and saute for three minutes.

Add the remaining dried spices and cook for a further two minutes. Add the chicken, dates, tomatoes and, if needed, a little water to cover the chicken. Simmer for 20 minutes. Pierce the chicken to check it’s ready. If the sauce looks too wet, remove the thighs for a few minutes while you reduce it. Sprinkle over the coriander. Serve with couscous and flatbread.

For a variation, toast almonds in a small nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, stir about 3 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pan at once. Let cool before adding to other ingredients.

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April 8, 2013

Roasted Asparagus with Anchovy Panko-Garlic Topping

Roasted Asparagus with Anchovy Panko-Garlic Topping is another veggie treat to enjoy. You need two pounds of asparagus, olive oil, seven anchovy fillets in oil, two minced garlic cloves, and 1 cup of panko bread crumbs. Preheat the oven to 42 degrees, toss all the items together and cook for twenty five minutes. Let cool and enjoy. A dish served in a Manhattan fine restaurant, there must be something unbelievable coming from this dish!

Read the full article here:
Roasted Asparagus with Anchovy Panko-Garlic Topping

asparagus

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March 31, 2013

Cooking in Ceramic, Enamel or Glass – Their Plain and Simple Differences

Taking time to choose between ceramic, enamel or glass for your cookware material is worth-spending. Why? Because these materials can hold heat for a long time.

ceramic

Typically, a ceramic cookware is either made of clay, or comes with a safe, non-scratch ceramic glaze with a bacteria-resistant surface. It specially emits far-infra red heat that is beneficial for cooking. Ceramic is a good heat conductor that distributes heat evenly. Its exceptional ability to resist cracking on both high heating and cooling, recognized the cookware as extreme temperature units. Ceramic is highly durable and very versatile for use in any conventional cooking from a stove top, microwave or toaster, under broiler, or on a barbecue grill.

dutch oven

Cookware made of enamel basically comes in two versions, the enamel on steel, and the enameled cast iron. Enamel is a porcelain-fused coating that is non-reactive and non-stick metal giving the shiny and often-colored surface of pots and pans. Enamel prevents the core metal from leaking into the food during the cooking process by acting as the hard barrier between the food and the iron base. The heat diffusion properties of enameled cast iron pots range it as an energy-efficient cookware. It can retain heat for longer periods with only a moderate amount of heat used. Enameled cookware is very durable and works well with every type of cooking from conventional to oven to the grill. It is among the easiest to clean cookware that is even dishwasher-safe.

Cooking in glass - courtesy of Chariza Collection

The see-though glass ceramic material allows you to handily monitor what you’re cooking with a less tendency of overcooking food. Even though glass does not distribute heat evenly, it can stand extreme temperatures, and is very efficient in warming food up in a toaster or oven. Heat-resistant glass cookware is practically a smart suggestion for mixing, cooking, storing and serving. It saves time by doing away with additional food storage containers. The only thing to bear in mind is the fragility of glass that can break under impact.

Regardless of what material you pick for your pots and pans, knowing what you like best and determining what you need most, are two most basic elements for a worth-picking choice. New styles of ceramic, enameled, or glass cookware can be all-around and attractive to have and use. If you finally have found an attractive, heavy-duty, convenient to clean, and efficient to use cookware that fits your budget, you would not want to pass up such an offer.

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