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Cookin again


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Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
By sheer random luck, I managed to get a lead on those bourbon peaches I was talking about earlier. I couldn’t remember the city listed on the label, so I looked it up again. And there in the corner of a thumbnail was a picture from my local Farmers’ Market from 2015 was a familiar looking jar. The label had different fonts, but the info was the same.

It’s still a mystery as to WHO sold it to me, but now I know WHERE I bought it. Now I just have to check out the various sellers.
 

prabe

Aspiring Lurker (He/Him)
Supporter
By sheer random luck, I managed to get a lead on those bourbon peaches I was talking about earlier. I couldn’t remember the city listed on the label, so I looked it up again. And there in the corner of a thumbnail was a picture from my local Farmers’ Market from 2015 was a familiar looking jar. The label had different fonts, but the info was the same.

It’s still a mystery as to WHO sold it to me, but now I know WHERE I bought it. Now I just have to check out the various sellers.
There are worse fates than wandering a farmers' market. There might be operational differences, for contagion safety, but it should still be more pleasant than a sharp stick in the eye.
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
There are worse fates than wandering a farmers' market. There might be operational differences, for contagion safety, but it should still be more pleasant than a sharp stick in the eye.
On the one hand, I hate getting up in the actual mornings of my Saturdays, but on the other, I’ve found so many yummy things to eat!
 



Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
Tonight’s dinner was tilapia crusted with ritz crackers, pecans, and parrano cheese, served with California mix veggies and homemade tartar sauce. The fillets were cooked on a bed of onions, which caramelized nicely.

Before:


After:
 


Vael

Adventurer
I made pretzels this week, the first batch, the oven wasn't quite hot enough, so they expanded into buns. The second tray turned out a lot better, got the nice dark color and shape to stay.
 


Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
A couple nights ago, I got some white beans and some red beans out of our freezer to eat as sides to things like some rotisserie chicken and some ham steaks- all supplied by relatives, so no cooking for me to do!

The guy who cooked the beans gave us a batch of tasty but soupy reds. I didn’t notice until my “beanberg” had been fully reheated in the microwave. I hadn’t planned on eating the beans with rice, so I didn’t cook any, which meant I was looking at a quarter dark chicken afloat in a sea of red bean “soup”.

Now, sometimes, when we have beans, we’ll have some buttered bread or toast, but I didn’t want to do that either...but I had just picked up a big cornbread from a local grocery’s bakery and thought...what the heck. Warmed a wedge of the cornbread in the toaster oven, buttering it immediately after it came out, Then I just plopped it in the Sea of Beans alongside Chickenleg Island, letting it soak up some of the liquid.

Gotta say, even though it’s not traditional creole, using the cornbread as a sop was damn good. Never did it before, but I’ve since done it a second time, and intend to try it with the white beans next.
 

prabe

Aspiring Lurker (He/Him)
Supporter
A couple nights ago, I got some white beans and some red beans out of our freezer to eat as sides to things like some rotisserie chicken and some ham steaks- all supplied by relatives, so no cooking for me to do!

The guy who cooked the beans gave us a batch of tasty but soupy reds. I didn’t notice until my “beanberg” had been fully reheated in the microwave. I hadn’t planned on eating the beans with rice, so I didn’t cook any, which meant I was looking at a quarter dark chicken afloat in a sea of red bean “soup”.

Now, sometimes, when we have beans, we’ll have some buttered bread or toast, but I didn’t want to do that either...but I had just picked up a big cornbread from a local grocery’s bakery and thought...what the heck. Warmed a wedge of the cornbread in the toaster oven, buttering it immediately after it came out, Then I just plopped it in the Sea of Beans alongside Chickenleg Island, letting it soak up some of the liquid.

Gotta say, even though it’s not traditional creole, using the cornbread as a sop was damn good. Never did it before, but I’ve since done it a second time, and intend to try it with the white beans next.
I use dried beans to make soups, one pound of beans at a time (because that's the recipes I have, and they're plenty for my wife and me). I'm getting the itch to do that again.

As to the cornbread thing--first, I like cornbread, and being from Maryland I'm see the appeal of the entire spectrum of sweetness; second, even if it's not the most-traditional accompaniment for the beans you had, it shows up in enough cuisines for that to be a hint that it'll probably work; third, "authentic" only matters as much as you want it to (not that you were implying anything else, of course).
 


prabe

Aspiring Lurker (He/Him)
Supporter
I'm with you. I'm beyond pleased that (for example) there's a really good and really authentic Indian restaurant nearby. I'm perfectly happy to pilfer from their cuisine for my own cooking, with the full understanding of what I'm doing (at least the pilfering; there are times when my cooking is a W.A.G.). My wife has a recipe for a very simple curry that she got from an Indian friend when she was in grad school, and I've cooked it more or less as-is, and I've riffed on it a bit.
 


Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
Back to this...
I use dried beans to make soups, one pound of beans at a time (because that's the recipes I have, and they're plenty for my wife and me). I'm getting the itch to do that again.
While I do like bean soups, in creole cooking, you're more likely to find beans cooked to a creamy consistency. The trick is, as they cook and start to soften, crush some of the beans against the side of the pot and continue to reduce the liquid over low heat. This releases their inner contents out into the liquid where they will thicken the broth into a creamy texture.
 

prabe

Aspiring Lurker (He/Him)
Supporter
While I do like bean soups, in creole cooking, you're more likely to find beans cooked to a creamy consistency. The trick is, as they cook and start to soften, crush some of the beans against the side of the pot and continue to reduce the liquid over low heat. This releases their inner contents out into the liquid where they will thicken the broth into a creamy texture.
I use a potato masher, closer to the end than it sounds as though you're describing, to a similar end--the soups I make are more like stews, and I like the thicker texture. I also do the long part of the cooking (the bit after the beans go in) in the oven. There are things my radiant cook top does pretty well, but low-and-slow is ... not playing to its strengths.
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
Huh. Never did one in the oven, really.

I recently watched a couple of videos in doing chicken soup in a pressure cooker- including one from ATK- and I’m really going to have to give it a go. That’s one of those comfort foods I haven’t mastered to my personal satisfaction- especially with the clari of broth- and the pressure cooker recipes look nearly foolproof.
 

prabe

Aspiring Lurker (He/Him)
Supporter
Huh. Never did one in the oven, really.

I recently watched a couple of videos in doing chicken soup in a pressure cooker- including one from ATK- and I’m really going to have to give it a go. That’s one of those comfort foods I haven’t mastered to my personal satisfaction- especially with the clari of broth- and the pressure cooker recipes look nearly foolproof.
I don't own a pressure cooker at this point. In principle I'm willing to be convinced, but I'm neither running into the sorts of problems it solves nor sure where I'd store it. I do stew-type soups (mostly bean stews and chilis) in the oven, simply because the oven is better at maintaining a constant low temperature. Pot roasts and baked beans, too, for the same reason.

The only chicken soup I make (and it's been a while since I've made it) is one that's a riff on a beer and onion soup recipe. The major logistical hurdle for that beer is that it requires one 12-oz. bottle of beer, and my wife and I are both beer nerds and we consume beer in twos. I suppose we could double the recipe, but that'd be a lot of soup.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Gotta say, even though it’s not traditional creole, using the cornbread as a sop was damn good. Never did it before, but I’ve since done it a second time, and intend to try it with the white beans next.
Cornbread as a sop has been a regular thing for me with chili for a couple of decades now.

I have found changes in cooking in the age of covid... specifically, a significant reduction in our food waste has been a practical upshot of the whole thing.
 

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