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484 article submissions by the ChefTalk.com community.

Dry Brining

Dry Brining is about salting for flavor and moisture retention ahead of cooking instead of wet brining and the sort of diluted flavor some perceive from that technique.   This technique is best used on cuts of meat that have not been presalted, either with a salt solution, or koshering. You need to be in complete control of the amount of salt. You'll need to seek out minimally processed meat, poultry especially, for this technique. Generally speaking, poultry and lamb work best with this technique.   First, some definitions of terms, paraphrased or copied from... read more

How To Clean Scallops In The Shell With Photos

When I was training in some of the great restaurants in France, I was amazed that all the scallops we purchased were in the shell, much like you would buy an oyster or mussel. They were beautiful specimens--tight and extremely sweet. It was all a romantic picture until I had to open and clean several cases of them as fast as I possibly could (the only working speed in these kitchens). Don't be misled--it's a tough job that ultimately yields a proportionally small amount of scallops.   But what a prized delicacy it is. What we actually eat is only a small part of the... read more

How To Tell If A Lobster is Male or Female

About a year ago I was asked to teach a class on how to buy, kill and prepare fresh lobster. This is part two of the series and the first part focuses on how to buy, when to buy and how to store lobster. You can read that here:  ​  When buying lobster, females are preferred because you get the roe (the eggs). The roe tastes quite good and is often used when preparing lobster. Telling a male from a female is pretty simple. Once you have a firm grasp, turn him/her upside down and look at the mid section where the tail meets the thorax [main body which the crawler (small... read more

How To Buy and Store Lobster

About a year ago I was asked to teach a class on how to buy, prepare lobster and this article and others to follow are a result of the notebook I put together for the class. This is part one of the class. Part two is  ​ I hope they are useful to members of ChefTalk.com   Best way to buy Lobster: Alive There are three ways to purchase lobster: Fresh Frozen Cooked   Important: Warning: Never buy raw uncooked lobster. All shellfish spoils rapidly once it dies.   When buying lobster, females are preferred because you get the roe (the eggs). The roe tastes... read more

Embed That Thread!

So you are responding to a discussion and want to link to another thread that is along the same lines. Or maybe you want to reference a product or article on cheftalk well then the way to go is to "EMBED" that thread baby. It is cool, looks so much nicer and is easy to do.     When you are responding to a post and want to insert a link to another cheftalk resource such as another discussion thread follow these steps.     ** Click on the images to see them full size so you can really get how cool "embedding" your links is.     1.) Open up the full options on the... read more

Life After Culinary School Career Change Part II

(Devil on my left shoulder)  180 days into the job I received my 90-day review.  Unfortunately the raise was only retroactive one pay period.  Back in my high tech days a 4% raise wasn't too shabby.  It doesn't carry the same wallop when you make $12.00 an hour.  I have reached a point where I am finally able to reflect on my career change.  The newness of Seattle has dulled and the excitement of being out of school is gone (however my first loan repayment check written tonight reminds me of the good times I had).   I would be lying if I didn't say once a week I think,... read more

Best Practices in Tagging

Now that you're equipped with the mechanics of tagging, you might be wondering, "This is really awesome, but what's the best way to put this into practice?" Glad you asked.   Below is a list of Best Practices to tag intelligently and efficiently.     Pick your forums wisely. Don’t open up the New Posts page and haphazardly tag across the whole site.  Pick the most popular, most product-oriented forums and start there.     Look for threads with product names in the title. To get a lot of bang for your buck, if you can first tackle threads that mention specific... read more

Finding Comfort Between Two Slices of Bread

Finding comfort between two slices of bread   Jim Berman   There is probably more in print - and on television - about Pittsburgh's Primanti Brothers than every James Beard Award winner. Combined. And that is the last the time "James Beard Award" and "Primanti Brothers" will appear in the same sentence. In case you missed the article in National Geographic, the spots on Man vs. Food and the Jon Stewart Show or are not a 'burgh resident, then you probably do not know about Primanti's goodness. From the wall-hung catalog of about 20 meat/fish choices, the rest is... read more

Barbecue, Macarons, Pizza & Burgers

Exploring A few days in Georgetown & Glover Park, Washington, DC Jim Berman   While on hiatus from my day-to-day calling, I have explored some locales that I had not really ventured to and through. Going back to sixth grade, my long-time friend, David, is a gracious host and even more generous with the space in his Glover Park home. Invited to explore the area around Washington, DC, I bounded for the iconic Wisconsin Avenue strip with its (seriously) countless restaurants, dives, bodegas, "gentlemen's clubs" and Whole Foods. Over the years, I had done the usual... read more

How To Make Pheasant Stock

For any of you who follow me on ChefTalk.com know that I am an avid upland game hunter and in particular pheasant hunting. A few fun threads regarding my antics are:             One of my biggest goals when actually hunting and animal for sport is to respect it completely by eating what I kill and using all of the bird as much as possible. A direct result of this has been using all of the bones to make stock and I have to say not only is it very simple I find it is not as strong as chicken stock. Also the stock seems to me to come out much clearer than chicken... read more

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