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Share your knowledge with the community by creating a cooking "how-to" tutorial/guide.

48 how to submissions by the ChefTalk.com community.

Making Creme Brulee

  • by PeteModerator

  I've never understood analogies that compare vanilla to something plain and simple.  Vanilla is exotic, spicy, floral, and comforting and in no way simple, plain or boring.  Sure, it gets used in just about every baked dessert, but just because it's use is widespread doesn't make plain or simple.  Vanilla is the second most expensive spice in the world, after saffron. This is because growing, harvesting and getting vanilla to market is a time-consuming, labor intensive undertaking.  First off, the orchids, that vanilla comes from must be hand pollinated.  The pod... read more

Orange Sherbet

Orange Sherbet The ninth in a series on ice creams, custards and sorbets Jim Berman CCI     Just in time for those fun holiday party punch bowls, I offer you orange sherbet. Yes, that bobbing mass of Titanic-sinking glacial mass of sweetened ice creamy goodness swimming in the overly-sweet, fruit juice and 7-up concoction that makes its way, front and center, to office parties, church bazars and uncomfortable family gatherings. Mispronounced as sher’bert, sherbet is a lower-fat version of the ice cream that we relish in the warm summer months (or on the occasional... read more

Basic Turkey Brining

          Enough with the twenty ingredient roast turkey recipes!  It happens every year as the holidays approach.  Magazines, television programs, and even celebrity chefs, push and prod the cooking public into spending far too much time and money on recipes and ingredients that only marginally improve their turkeys.  This year, take a stand and focus on the basics done right.  Instead of adding one-eighth of a teaspoon of this herb, and one-half teaspoon of nineteen other spices, just know that you can roast a juicy, very flavorful turkey with only three common... read more

Making Sauerkraut

  • by PeteModerator

  Sauerkraut, it's one of those foods that you either love or hate, at least from my experience.  I've never met anyone that has a lukewarm opinion about it.  It's one of those foods that always seems to illicit a strong response.  I happen to fall into that category of those that love the stuff.  While I've always liked sauerkraut, at least as far back as I can remember, it wasn't until I learned to make my own that I came to truly love this German staple.   Here, in Wisconsin, making sauerkraut has been an autumn tradition for generations, with families often... read more

Not Your Mother's Creamed Corn

  • by PeteModerator

Not Your Mother's Creamed Corn The second in a series examining the foods of the New World and its vast influence on cuisines around the globe.   By Peter Martin   Today corn is the world's largest grain crop, by weight, with over 815 million tons harvested in 2009.  This surpasses both rice and wheat, corn's biggest rivals by over 100 million tons each.  While the top 3 producers of corn are the US, China, and Brazil, every continent has a representative in the Top 10 producers of corn.  Yet, 500 years ago this important grain was unknown outside of North America. ... read more

Cherry Ice Cream

Frozen Summer: Cherry Ice Cream The eighth in a series on ice creams, custards and sorbets Jim Berman CCI       My homage, if you will, to the Prunus Avium, that dangling orb of summer lovin’ comes in the form of delicious cherries hugged and squeezed and nestled in a lovely frozen amalgam of cream, milk and sugar. You see, I owe much of my interest in cooking to my mother’s aggressive avoidance of the kitchen and all it represents. There were to be no dirty dishes, hence we used paper plates almost exclusively. There were to be no spots upon the stove,... read more

Pesto v3.0

Pesto v3.0 Jim Berman CCI   Back in February, 2010, I came out with a couple of pieces on Pesto, that beloved amalgam of green, summer goodness. Since then, through many iterations, revisions and interpretations, I have changed my ways. Below is the original recipe, with a few changes in latitude and longitude. And there are some pictures thrown in, as well. My reflections are duly noted will make for more fodder when I circle back after even more recapitulations. No verbose history, origins of the ingredients and the like. Rather, a head-on recipe that works... read more

Tomato Concasse - How to Peel and Seed a Tomato

  • by PeteModerator

Tomato Concasse - How to Peel and Seed a Tomato The first in a series examining the foods of the New World and its vast influence on cuisines around the globe.   by Peter Martin   "In 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue..." and the culinary world was forever changed.  It's hard to imagine Italian cuisine without tomatoes, Indian and Thai food without the kick of chile peppers, or the numerous cuisines that rely heavily on the potato, but before Columbus's voyage the rest of the world, except for the Americas, did without these foods and many, many more.  This... read more

Brussels Sprouts

by: Chef Jim Berman I distinctly recall the first time I saw a Praying Mantis. I was certain that something was terribly wrong in the world. Images of giant bugs, like I would see in imported ‘70s sci-fi films were dancing around in my 6-year old brain. Giant tarantulas, the size of a Volkswagen would join allegiance with building-size scorpions and take over the world. Well, I was sure that this Praying Mantis was a super-sized grasshopper preparing for world domination, right here in my backyard. Somebody came to my rescue, I am sure, with a laser gun to zap that... read more

Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream

Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream The seventh in a series on ice creams, custards and sorbets Jim Berman CCI       Fall. Halloween. Pumpkin. And ice cream is always on the calendar. This installment in the series on frozen desserts covers a genuine fall staple. Pumpkin shows up in everything as of late, but I have always been a fan of pumpkin pie ice cream. From back in the day as a wee, curly haired chubby kid causing general mayhem on the streets of Pittsburgh, I used to wander in to Baskin Robbins and ask for a sample of their Pumpkin ice ice cream. And ask for... read more

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