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Posts by thatchairlady

My mother died when I was about 8 (brother 5 and sister 2).  Dad's mother, Nana, stepped in and pretty much ran the ship until we were old enough to be left "home alone" while Dad worked shift work at an oil refinery.  She was a great cook... tho had a bit of a rep for occasionally burning something & then laughing about it.  Nothing "fancy"... basic stuff.  We 3 kids had ALL the basics of cooking down pat before even close to moving out on our own.  Coulda made...
In a perfect world, I'd freeze all tomato products!?!  I put peeled/chunked/sauced tomatoes in quart freezer bags.  I lay them on counter (sorta) to allow as much air to escape as possible before closing.  Freeze FLAT if at all possible and then you can almost "file" them in freezer.
Another yes for vac sealer.  Made  MAJOR yard sale fiinds at 2 separate places on FoodSaver.  Spent $10 (total) and came home with at least $50 worth of bags AND a Foodsaver unit!     I'm cooking for one so FS is ideal for me.  Almost every meat/poultry package in supermarket is way too much for 1-2 servings.  It takes a little time (but worth it) to repackage stuff before freezing.  A rock-hard, frozen hunka just about anything is ready to cook/heat/eat after 20-30...
The rubbery/orangy seal on inside of 2-piece canning lid set ups is meant to be heated up a bit before canning to soften it a bit.  Beside boiling/sterilizing jars and rings, "they" tell you to give lids a certain amount of time (check directions for specifics) so seal gets pliable.   I'm a yard sale & thrift store fan, and ALWAYS interested in canning jars... especially WIDE-mouth quart ones... obviously with NO chipped edges or even smallest cracks.  If you have a Food...
Seem to remember seeing thin sliced potatoes (for scalloped or gratin-ed) getting a 2-3 minute boil/blanch first... Maybe on Cooks Country or ATK??  Something to do with preventing that watery thing that sometimes happens?  You would THINK, if you can bake a big one in maybe an hour, thin sliced should cook faster??
I'm NOT an expert, but do have "mad scientist" moments.  I know you can by magnetic sheets... like stuff fridge magnets are made of.  What if you cut a piece a bit longer than blade and twice as wide.  Do a light score (with exacto or something similar)... JUST deep enough to allow  nice easy fold, but not deep enough to cut thru.  Then you could just fold over blade edge.
First thought is OLD peas??  Have had same results with legumes of unknown age??   Whenever I have a nice ham bone, totally torn...split pea or navy bean soup?!?  I NEVER soak split peas??  Just put bone and veggies (onion, celery, carrots) in big pot of water and dump in a bag-o split peas.  results are what we call"exorcist" soup... thick and creamy.
I know some people totally SHUN non-stick, but I have to praise Calphalon.  Bought a 2-pack of skillets at BBB for maybe $50.  Was pretty good to them for SEVERAL years.  If I did use metal utensils, was VERY careful/gentle.  Usually hand-washed but did put in dishwasher on a few occasions.   A year or so ago, was noticing that they werent quite as non-stick and had heard about C's return/replace policy and decided to give it a try.  Did have to pay a few dollars to send...
Went a little "mad scientist" and decided to try to smoke my own.  Found a 1 lb bag of sea salt at favorite little Asian market... for CHEAP.  Have one of those stove-top smoker thingies... one with lid that slides over pan... a never used, yard sale find.   Had NO idea how long it would take or which of the 4-5 little containers of chips to use, so just had at it.  Results looked like slightly "dirty" salt and I didn't notce any serious smoke taste or aroma??  Figured...
RARELY discard bones from any kinda chicken without making some stock.  WHole chicken, pieces (roasted/grilled)... there's  sone pretty much FREE stock in there.  Bones, water, celery/onion/carrots and a simmer.  No real WORK involved and if I get 3-4 cups... that's great!  From frozen, can go into about ANYTHING that needs more liquid... AND flavor.   Wish I had $$ & room for a MASSIVE freezer... would have nice neat shelves with stock ready to go.  I PRESSURE can...
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