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Cooking |OT| If you can read, you can cook!

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Gr1mLock

Passing metallic gas
Dec 12, 2008
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Subscribed. If/when i burn my building down Im blaming this thread and everyone in it.
 

levious

That throwing stick stunt of yours has boomeranged on us.
Jun 7, 2004
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What would you use to clean actual burns inside a stainless steel pan? Just soap and hot water?


bon ami or cameo would work too, although I would wash again with regular dish soap after.

Again, stainless steel, I wouldn't think it's safe for any non-stick surface.
 

cryptic

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Guys, I've applied to Johnson and Wales in Rhode Island but I'm seriously considering going to CIA if they don't get me set up for the March 6 semester as I don't want to wait while I'm unemployed and going nuts.
If anyone has any reasons why I should stick with Johnson and Wales or why I should go CIA I'd appreciate any comments. I have no money and will need to stay on campus as I don't have a car while at the same time as going I'd like to be working on or at a restaurant around campus. Once again money is an issue as I'm not eligible for financial aid due to both my parents total income being over the limit however they cannot afford to lend me a dime; it suck's that the FAFSA doesn't look at net income.
Any help is appreciated.
 

beat

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Jun 22, 2006
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Guys, I've applied to Johnson and Wales in Rhode Island but I'm seriously considering going to CIA if they don't get me set up for the March 6 semester as I don't want to wait while I'm unemployed and going nuts.
If anyone has any reasons why I should stick with Johnson and Wales or why I should go CIA I'd appreciate any comments. I have no money and will need to stay on campus as I don't have a car while at the same time as going I'd like to be working on or at a restaurant around campus. Once again money is an issue as I'm not eligible for financial aid due to both my parents total income being over the limit however they cannot afford to lend me a dime; it suck's that the FAFSA doesn't look at net income.
Any help is appreciated.
I know the restaurant life isn't for me, so I can't recommend either school over the other*, but: have you worked in a restaurant before? And liked it? Have you read the book "The Making of a Chef" by Michael Ruhlman? (He spent a year at the CIA.)

* Although I do know those two are definitely reputable schools, not like a certain horror story.
 

Zyzyxxz

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Guys, I've applied to Johnson and Wales in Rhode Island but I'm seriously considering going to CIA if they don't get me set up for the March 6 semester as I don't want to wait while I'm unemployed and going nuts.
If anyone has any reasons why I should stick with Johnson and Wales or why I should go CIA I'd appreciate any comments. I have no money and will need to stay on campus as I don't have a car while at the same time as going I'd like to be working on or at a restaurant around campus. Once again money is an issue as I'm not eligible for financial aid due to both my parents total income being over the limit however they cannot afford to lend me a dime; it suck's that the FAFSA doesn't look at net income.
Any help is appreciated.

As someone who's worked in restaurants please don't go to school before you've worked as a line cook in a busy restaurant for at least a year first. I just hope you aren't going to be one of those fools who are hopeless romantics and think you will love your job because more than likely you won't.

Also have you considered instead of going into school why not intern somewhere or even try to find a job doing something basic like working on prep/dishwasher? Because you will most likely be making minimum wage. When you get out of culinary school you will most likely being making minimum wage +1/2. Pay does not increase easily in this field.

You really want to spend $60,000 or more to cook? You can start for free instead. Your financial situation sounds shitty and most likely it won't improve much after school.

Now if you really must go to culinary school go for the one that will cost you less money. Both are good schools and they are at least not Le Cordon "Bullshit". If you haven't worked at least a year in the industry CIA might not take you but then again most culinary school will take suckers willing to take out a loan which is all too easy to get these days.
 

joe2187

Banned
Jul 25, 2011
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Guys, I've applied to Johnson and Wales in Rhode Island but I'm seriously considering going to CIA if they don't get me set up for the March 6 semester as I don't want to wait while I'm unemployed and going nuts.
If anyone has any reasons why I should stick with Johnson and Wales or why I should go CIA I'd appreciate any comments. I have no money and will need to stay on campus as I don't have a car while at the same time as going I'd like to be working on or at a restaurant around campus. Once again money is an issue as I'm not eligible for financial aid due to both my parents total income being over the limit however they cannot afford to lend me a dime; it suck's that the FAFSA doesn't look at net income.
Any help is appreciated.

As someone who's worked in restaurants please don't go to school before you've worked as a line cook in a busy restaurant for at least a year first.

Listen to this mans sageful advice, DO NOT SPEND MONEY ON Culinary Schools, the ones that are urging you to get loans or file for loans dont care about you or your financial situation, do some work first.

Get a part time job, and continue getting a degree in college, hone your skills at home and find a job at a catering company or small restaurant.

If all else fails try a trade school in your area, i'm sure they have a culinary program that could give you a head start.
 

cryptic

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Alright, I worked five years at a hospital as a dishwasher and that's where I was introduced to batch cooking through observation. I then did dish washing/light prep at a French restaurant in my area of Western Mass owned by a pair of two people who once had a Michelin star restaurant in New York. I learned a lot through talking with the head chefs and through simple observations that I've applied at home, and although the work for me was ridiculously hard I enjoyed the camaraderie and the feeling at the end of the day. I then went on to try working at a place where I was to be doing mostly prep and found my knife skills were inadequate for really finely dicing things but the short time I was there I loved being out of the dishwasher room and really loved the job.

The head chef there went to CIA, I talked with them about skills, and they mentioned why bother going to a trade school, which I had lined up, when you can go to something with a name like CIA or J&W. Also, I had my other chef tell me he was making about 28 dollars an hour out of school in Oakland working at a hospital and on Christmas he made about 70 dollars an hour getting double pay and a half.

So, I'm just thinking the name will get me farther and even if I'm only starting at 15 dollars an hour the loan should be very low, hopefully, and I'll be able to comfortably pay it back.
 

joe2187

Banned
Jul 25, 2011
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As far as I can tell the name of the school really doesn't matter the "Le Cordon Bleu" name In Los Angeles as far as I can tell from working with all types of different places has become degraded to the point nobody wants to hire the students.

I've volunteered at many great high class events, working in hollywood, working with the food Network stars at their own red carpet events, cooking BBQ with Guy fieri, feeding the Veterans at their holiday events, working catering with Wolfgang pucks crew, and working backstage at the WB studio I've all come away asking them about students from the culinary schools, they don't have a problem with them besides the kids from "Le Cordon Bleu" None of them really want to work with them, even on volunteer events!

I'm not saying CIA is bad, or their name is tarnished, I would very much love to have an oppurtunity to go to CIA. Just dont count on the name to be the deciding factor on why you get hired.

People want a hard, dedicated chef in the kitchen that knows what he's doing and knows when to take charge when the pressure mounts, there really isnt any amount of money in the world that can buy you that.

Also try to be on time and never miss a day, I've gotten fired from a job just because I called in sick once! and Iwas doing great at that job, no problems or anything I just happened to catch a cold on one of their busiest days and, it pretty much fucked them over.
 

Zyzyxxz

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Alright, I worked five years at a hospital as a dishwasher and that's where I was introduced to batch cooking through observation. I then did dish washing/light prep at a French restaurant in my area of Western Mass owned by a pair of two people who once had a Michelin star restaurant in New York. I learned a lot through talking with the head chefs and through simple observations that I've applied at home, and although the work for me was ridiculously hard I enjoyed the camaraderie and the feeling at the end of the day. I then went on to try working at a place where I was to be doing mostly prep and found my knife skills were inadequate for really finely dicing things but the short time I was there I loved being out of the dishwasher room and really loved the job.

The head chef there went to CIA, I talked with them about skills, and they mentioned why bother going to a trade school, which I had lined up, when you can go to something with a name like CIA or J&W. Also, I had my other chef tell me he was making about 28 dollars an hour out of school in Oakland working at a hospital and on Christmas he made about 70 dollars an hour getting double pay and a half.

So, I'm just thinking the name will get me farther and even if I'm only starting at 15 dollars an hour the loan should be very low, hopefully, and I'll be able to comfortably pay it back.

Well if you want to get into corporate chef-ing the pay and benefits are great but regular restaurants no. Just beware once you go corporate cook it can be hard to switch tracks to restaurant cook. No matter what you do decide you got to work hard to move up and get noticed but don't be a robot and get use to cooking in a line doing the same thing everyday. You got to make time to learn extra skills and improve your craft.
 

levious

That throwing stick stunt of yours has boomeranged on us.
Jun 7, 2004
27,487
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hmm i just tried some baking soda, there's a few marks left but so much better than before

baking soda might be a good cheap alternative, I think I've been told that Comet is too abrasive though.


On pizza dough, I would just recommend wet yeast if that's feasible for you, and I don't like any recipe I've used that involved eggs. I used to toss pizzas for Sutton Gourmet if anyone remembers that chain of fancypants grocery stores. I wish I had bothered to convert their recipe, it was very good and consistent.
 

darkwing

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On pizza dough, I would just recommend wet yeast if that's feasible for you, and I don't like any recipe I've used that involved eggs. I used to toss pizzas for Sutton Gourmet if anyone remembers that chain of fancypants grocery stores. I wish I had bothered to convert their recipe, it was very good and consistent.

yup, don't like eggs, I don't know what's the right ratio to flour/water/yeast though lol
 

Ether_Snake

安安安安安安安安安安安安安安安
Dec 2, 2006
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Guys...

With most things I do repeatedly in life, I get better at it.

Not with cooking.

Is there any sort of guide to follow to become a better cook? Not some long ass read, just basically a series of recipes that I could do, where each will help me become better at cooking and not merely at making those particular recipes?

Help:(
 

DietRob

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Wow I can't believe I missed this thread. Great OP. I really enjoy cooking and getting in that zen state of mind it provides me with.

I made some great Roasted Rosemary Potatoes to bring to my dad's for dinner tonight.
 

squidyj

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help GAF, trying to make a pizza dough, I remember a pizza thread but can't find it, or does anyone have a nice pizza dough recipe?

I like this:

1 cup warm water
2 cups Bread Flour
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Salt
2 teaspoons white sugar
1 package of yeast

dissolve yeast let stand yadda yadda. Mix everything together. Rise. Etc.

The recipe is wrong though, you'll need a fair bit more flour to get a decent dough. If I wasn't a lazy bastard I'd probably figure out just how much more I needed but meh.
 

giri

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Jul 16, 2009
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Guys...

With most things I do repeatedly in life, I get better at it.

Not with cooking.

Is there any sort of guide to follow to become a better cook? Not some long ass read, just basically a series of recipes that I could do, where each will help me become better at cooking and not merely at making those particular recipes?

Help:(

Jamie Olivers "Cook" cookbook is basically this. In each section he starts with simple recipes, and gets more complex / complicated.

Though nothing in there is that dificult at all.
 

beat

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Jun 22, 2006
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Not with cooking.

Is there any sort of guide to follow to become a better cook? Not some long ass read, just basically a series of recipes that I could do, where each will help me become better at cooking and not merely at making those particular recipes?

Not really... but the books I would recommend genuinely are helpful. Alton Brown's "I'm Just Here For The Food", Michael Ruhlman's "Twenty" are two good places to start. Neither requires being read from start to finish; you can pick up a chapter as necessary.

What in particular do you think you need to get better at? Prep work? Prep speed? Quality of the finished product?
 

TheExodu5

Banned
Nov 27, 2007
38,093
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I think the absolute key thing, and it's one that takes practice, is knowing how to cook meat properly. I'm working on that one myself.

I'm moving out shortly and will have a chance to focus more on cooking for myself. I'm going to practice frying steak, chicken, and fish. I'll try to learn how to deglaze a pan and make a sauce. I'll learn how to make gravy. All the basics. From there, I'll get to experiment with different spices and see what goes well together. Hopefully I can start putting some stuff together by myself after a bit of practice.

I like this:

1 cup warm water
2 cups Bread Flour
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Salt
2 teaspoons white sugar
1 package of yeast

dissolve yeast let stand yadda yadda. Mix everything together. Rise. Etc.

The recipe is wrong though, you'll need a fair bit more flour to get a decent dough. If I wasn't a lazy bastard I'd probably figure out just how much more I needed but meh.

Yeah, I made that pizza dough a few weeks ago. The day before, I made pretzels which used roughly the same amount of flour and the dough was just right with just under 1 cup of water. The two tablespoons of olive oil is what's skewing things, I think. I'd put probably 3/4 cup of water + 2tbsp of olive oil with 2 cups of flower...I think that might do the trick.

If you don't like the taste of olive oil, then substitute it for something more neutral.

If you do like the taste of olive oil, I highly recommend sprinkling some italian spices over the cheese before you bake the pizza. Adds a really nice flavor that goes great with the olive oil.

Guys...

With most things I do repeatedly in life, I get better at it.

Not with cooking.

Is there any sort of guide to follow to become a better cook? Not some long ass read, just basically a series of recipes that I could do, where each will help me become better at cooking and not merely at making those particular recipes?

Help:(

What's going wrong, exactly?
 

beat

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Jun 22, 2006
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I think the absolute key thing, and it's one that takes practice, is knowing how to cook meat properly. I'm working on that one myself.
Baking aside - because doughs and batters are IMO harder than cooking meat, veg, etc - I think the factors you generally have to understand are heat, salt, browning, and moisture, and all of those are interrelated.

Heat cooks food, and it also dries food out. Sometimes you want this -- say, when you want non-slimy okra.

Salt is crucial to taste. It can pull moisture out of food. Brining or dry-salting your food (with enough prep time) can actually help your food hold on to moisture better, though. Salting your food as it cooks seasons it more deeply and thoroughly than salting at the table. You cannot substitute the effect of 1 or 2 tsp of salt on a roasting chicken 8 hours ahead with the same amount of salt at the dinner table. Salt your food as it cooks.

Water only goes up to 100 C, but foods only start browning at significantly higher temperatures*, so food you want to brown should be dry on the surface: if you've brined chicken, for example, thoroughly pat it dry. You can also help browning along by adding sugar or adjusting the pH.

* well, technically browning can occur below 100C, but only in extremely long cooking times.

Consider the desired amount of moisture in the cooked food. We usually want juicy steak and tender green beans, but beef jerky is thoroughly dried, potato chips are completely dried, braised or stewed meats are thoroughly soaked through with the sauce. How do we keep juicy meats juicy? Salt them properly, don't overcook them, don't squeeze/press them during cooking, let your meat rest after cooking.


A couple of other things:

- balance your flavours. That doesn't mean you need to taste sweet, salty, bitter, sour, and umami all in equal proportions, but a couple drops of lemon juice to a stew might be helpful. Worst case, take a small ladleful out, add a drop or two of lemon juice and see what you think.

- taste as you go along, if you can. Taste it, then think about what it needs. Is it lacking any sweetness? Any acid?

- A basic understanding of meat cuts will help: you shouldn't braise a steak, and conversely, a tough piece of meat shouldn't just be thrown on a grill. Basically it has to do with how much connective tissue is in the particular cut of meat.

- If you buy whatever meat and produce are on sale, that can be a good way to force yourself to learn new recipes. But learn how to shop for food. Some meat on sale is a bargain, and some meat on sale is best avoided. It should have a pleasant colour, no signs of imminent spoilage, and ideally it's not processed with added salt or brining agents. (I love salt, but I think you're better off controlling your salt level yourself.) But a lot of supermarkets only sell "enhanced" pork, for example.
 

Pachterballs

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Jun 2, 2010
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I just bought a electric pressure cooker over the weekend and I've used it twice since. AMAZING.

throw in curry power+onion+garlic and 3 pounds of chicken + season. 20 minutes. A whole vat of nice hot tender chicken curry.

Its so amazing.

I'm going to do a beef stew of sort next.
 

TheExodu5

Banned
Nov 27, 2007
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How do we keep juicy meats juicy? Salt them properly, don't overcook them, don't squeeze/press them during cooking, let your meat rest after cooking.

Also, make absolutely sure your pan is hot enough to not boil the meat. As soon as you start hearing that boiling sound, you've probably ruined the meat.
 

Zyzyxxz

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Also, make absolutely sure your pan is hot enough to not boil the meat. As soon as you start hearing that boiling sound, you've probably ruined the meat.

Actually that just means your pan isn't hot enough or you put too much meat in a small pan.

Your meat boiling in its own juices isn't ruined to say but it just means you don't get proper browning.
 

DietRob

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Excuse the crappy cell phone pic and the fact that I use paper plates, lol, hey it's easier on the cleanup.

Here is some tortellini and homemade Cajun alfredo sauce. Making the sauce was so easy and turned out very rich, creamy, and delicious.



Alfredo Sauce : I don't usually measure ingredients so these are rough guesstimates but should produce awesome results.

Mince 3 to 4 tablespoons of fresh garlic, saute garlic in 2 tablespoons of olive oil. After about 2 minutes of sauteing pour in around 3 cups of heavy cream and a little over a 1/4 cup of White wine. Let that reduce down to about half of what you started with. After reducing add in half cup of roughly chopped sun dried tomatoes, and 1 cup of shredded parmesan stirring constantly until the cheese is melted. (Now is also when you can add cooked chicken if you want to make this chicken alfredo). After cheese is evenly melted add salt and pepper to taste then toss your favorite pasta in it and EAT LIKE A KING!

I added cajun seasoning instead of salt to make mine "Cajun Alfredo"
 

Maklershed

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^ That picture kind of reminds me of when I lurked this thread before I was a member of GAF and drooled over Onkel's picture of spaetzle. (and It think maybe a side of veal or something too but I forget)
 

TheExodu5

Banned
Nov 27, 2007
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Actually that just means your pan isn't hot enough or you put too much meat in a small pan.

Your meat boiling in its own juices isn't ruined to say but it just means you don't get proper browning.

A few weeks ago, I was frying up some steak brochette meat (obviously, off the brochette). I goofed during the first batch and my pan wasn't hot enough (and since I have a nearly 30 year old electric stovetop, I wasn't able to get the pan hot quickly after that). The meat was boiled and was incredibly tough as a result. I did my second match with the pan hot enough, and seared it quickly. Incredibly juicy and tender by comparison.

Same thing happened to chicken earlier this week. First day I accidentally boiled it and it was tough as hell (even though it was still pretty juicy). Second day I attempted again with a hotter pan and had no issues.

If you're asking why I'm constantly boiling meat, it's because I'm trying different pans out at home while I search for something to replace the nonstick pan I used to use. One of the stainless steel pans I have, I have determined, is far too thin and doesn't retain any heat, so putting too much meat on there just cools it instantly. Thankfully I found an old stowaway that's much thicker and does the trick perfectly.
 

beat

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Jun 22, 2006
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A few weeks ago, I was frying up some steak brochette meat (obviously, off the brochette). I goofed during the first batch and my pan wasn't hot enough (and since I have a nearly 30 year old electric stovetop, I wasn't able to get the pan hot quickly after that). The meat was boiled and was incredibly tough as a result. I did my second match with the pan hot enough, and seared it quickly. Incredibly juicy and tender by comparison.

Same thing happened to chicken earlier this week. First day I accidentally boiled it and it was tough as hell (even though it was still pretty juicy). Second day I attempted again with a hotter pan and had no issues.
A pan that's not hot enough doesn't necessarily mean you'll end up overcooking your meat; it just means you have to cook for texture rather than colour. A lower temp pan will take longer to cook meat but lower cooking temperatures also mean the meat will cook more evenly.

That said, you don't want even cooking for a rare/medium rare steak; you want a nice sear and a much less cooked interior. Hence high heat and a short time on the heat.

(the rule of thumb I've heard is to test it by prodding it - http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/the_finger_test_to_check_the_doneness_of_meat/ - though you should definitely consider using a thermometer as well.)
 

DietRob

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Oh my god GAF. I just made the most delicious pizza I've ever created and I have made hundreds of them over the years. I had some leftover Alfredo sauce (recipe a few posts above) and decided to make a Chicken and Bacon Alfredo Pizza. So incredibly good!


Drool GAF, drool. This deserves it.


I've got a good, simple dough recipe if anyone is looking for one, let me know.
 

darkwing

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Oh my god GAF. I just made the most delicious pizza I've ever created and I have made hundreds of them over the years. I had some leftover Alfredo sauce (recipe a few posts above) and decided to make a Chicken and Bacon Alfredo Pizza. So incredibly good!


Drool GAF, drool. This deserves it.


I've got a good, simple dough recipe if anyone is looking for one, let me know.

me me me been looking for dough recipes
 

DietRob

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me me me been looking for dough recipes

Ok. I don't really do measurements but it's very simple. I also don't have a nice fancy mixer so I do this by hand.

Stir up a packet of yeast and about a teaspoon or two of sugar in a cup of warm water. Let that mixture sit for about 10-20 minutes until it's bubbly and frothy.

Slowly stir in around 2 cups of Bread Flour, and 2 tablespoons of olive oil, it is important to use bread flour. All of my attempts using AP are not as good.

Once your dough ball starts to form take it out of the bowl and start kneading it on a well floured surface.

Add flour while kneading so that you create a soft and just a tad bit sticky ball you'll want to knead it for about 10 minutes.

Oil a bowl throw the dough in there and let it rise for about an hour, or whenever it's doubled in size.

Take the dough out of the bowl and knead again for around 5 or 10 minutes. Finally shaping it into a ball throwing it in a plastic bag and tossing it in the fridge, preferably over night but a few hours will work too.

Take your dough out of the fridge about an hour before you are wanting to cook so that it can come to room temp.

You can also substitute honey, agave or other sweeteners for different flavors instead of sugar. You can also add herbs or whatever else you want too. Once you get the base dough down start experimenting.

edit: If you guys end up using this come back and post about the results!
edit 2: I forgot about salt, add a pinch or two of salt as you add the bread flour. If you want to that is, some people don't like using salt since usually your pizza topping will have enough salt to carry your pizza.
edit 3: Damn I suck at typing out recipes forgot about adding olive oil. See the directions for that edit.
 

darkwing

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when you toss it in the fridge, its not in the freezer part right? lol

btw is bread flour the same as cake flour? i don't think i've seen bread flour around my area
 

levious

That throwing stick stunt of yours has boomeranged on us.
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darkwing,

They might label it as high-gluten flour as well. I think they're the same but not sure.
 

beat

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btw is bread flour the same as cake flour? i don't think i've seen bread flour around my area

Bread flour is the OPPOSITE of cake flour! From low protein content to high, it goes cake, all-purpose, and bread. Though these aren't standardized terms and so one manufacturer's all-purpose could be significantly higher protein than the next.

(Wheat protein becomes gluten, so high-gluten flours would probably be high-protein.)
 

DietRob

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when you toss it in the fridge, its not in the freezer part right? lol

btw is bread flour the same as cake flour? i don't think i've seen bread flour around my area

Cake flour has the lowest amount of gluten and will likely produce a flaky type of crust. Bread flour has the highest amount of gluten and will produce a crisp but chewy pizza crust. The reason I use bread flour is because that is the type of crust I prefer. I guess you could give it a shot with cake flour if you like, I've never tried.

Yep, when you toss it in the fridge put it in the fridge section. The recipe I listed for the crust should make 2 large NY style pies . If you have some left over you can always freeze that and use it another time. Just make sure to take it out of the freezer the day before you want to use it and transfer it to the fridge to defrost.
 

darkwing

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thanks guys, lol though I wonder what might happen if cake flour was used lol I'll try to find this bread flour/high gluten flour instead

btw can you substitute non stick spray/baking spray with just vegetable oil that you paint/smear on the baking pans?
 

IrishNinja

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okay, so - what's good fish-wise? i think i can do a salmon and not fuck it up (shrimp's even easier) but i was thinking of branching out - any recommendations, as well as spices/sauces?
i need more b vitamins!

sub

Any knife recommendations? Particularly for cutting vegetables.

mean to ask this, too! looking for a good cooking knife set, i dont wanna go crazy on it but id like to buy a set that lasts for a long time too. i just barely missed a great deal on groupon sadly.
 

Timedog

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Ok. I don't really do measurements but it's very simple. I also don't have a nice fancy mixer so I do this by hand.

Stir up a packet of yeast and about a teaspoon or two of sugar in a cup of warm water. Let that mixture sit for about 10-20 minutes until it's bubbly and frothy.

Slowly stir in around 2 cups of Bread Flour, and 2 tablespoons of olive oil, it is important to use bread flour. All of my attempts using AP are not as good.

Once your dough ball starts to form take it out of the bowl and start kneading it on a well floured surface.

Add flour while kneading so that you create a soft and just a tad bit sticky ball you'll want to knead it for about 10 minutes.

Oil a bowl throw the dough in there and let it rise for about an hour, or whenever it's doubled in size.

Take the dough out of the bowl and knead again for around 5 or 10 minutes. Finally shaping it into a ball throwing it in a plastic bag and tossing it in the fridge, preferably over night but a few hours will work too.

Take your dough out of the fridge about an hour before you are wanting to cook so that it can come to room temp.

You can also substitute honey, agave or other sweeteners for different flavors instead of sugar. You can also add herbs or whatever else you want too. Once you get the base dough down start experimenting.

edit: If you guys end up using this come back and post about the results!
edit 2: I forgot about salt, add a pinch or two of salt as you add the bread flour. If you want to that is, some people don't like using salt since usually your pizza topping will have enough salt to carry your pizza.
edit 3: Damn I suck at typing out recipes forgot about adding olive oil. See the directions for that edit.

Putting it in the fridge isn't going to do much if you do it for a few hours and not overnight. The point of the fridge is to slow the yeast reaction while letting taste-creating bacteria grow.
 

darkwing

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thanks for the dough in the ref tip, amazing! I wrapped the dough in cling wrap, and it burst open after a few hours, we love the pizza after, crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside
 

DietRob

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Putting it in the fridge isn't going to do much if you do it for a few hours and not overnight. The point of the fridge is to slow the yeast reaction while letting taste-creating bacteria grow.

Yea, that's why I said preferably overnight. A lot of people don't want to start preparing their meals a day ahead of time so a few hours won't be horrible but won't be the best it could either. Happy median.

thanks for the dough in the ref tip, amazing! I wrapped the dough in cling wrap, and it burst open after a few hours, we love the pizza after, crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside

I'm glad you liked it! That is exactly how I like my dough nice crispy outside and chewy inside. I think I'm going to start thawing some dough now so I can enjoy some homemade pizza later.
 
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