Monday, December 14, 2015

Microwave Poached Eggs

YouTube Link: Microwave Poached Eggs
More Videos: Helen's Kitchen Channel

The dielectric constant is the ratio of the permittivity of a substance to the permittivity of free space. It is an expression of the extent to which a material concentrates electric flux, and is the electrical equivalent of relative magnetic permeability. Adding salt to water makes it less permeable to the microwave radiation. This means the egg cooks more gently and is less likely to overcook in spots.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Holiday Gifts for Cooks and Bakers 2015

There is a reason why professional chefs don't cook with Cutco knives and Pampered Chef gadgets. If you want to buy a gift for a cook or baker in your life this holiday season, why not make it good?

You can see all the kitchen equipment and cookbooks that I love in my Amazon Store.  Here are some fun packages you can put together for your culinarian.

Why isn't this list different from what I recommended last year?   Because I only recommend cooking tools that last :)

Meat Lover's Package
Stainless steel skillet (All-Clad or Tramontina)
Thermometer (Thermapen or Thermopop)
Roasting Rack
What to do with all this:
Cooking Technique for Tender Cuts
How to Wash a Stainless Steel Skillet

Baker's Package
Pizza Stone (it's not just for pizza anymore :)
Digital Scale
Pastry Scraper
One of Rose Levy Beranbaum's books
What to do with all this:
Thin Crust Pizza
Pie Dough

Vegetarian (or Bean Lover's) Package
Pressure Cooker
Rancho Gordo Bean Sampler
Hip Pressure Cooker Book
What to do with all this:
How to Use a Pressure Cooker
How to Cook Beans

Knife Package 
(for normal people, not for Knife Geeks)
Chef's Knife
Paring Knife
Boning Knife
Accusharp Sharpener
What to do with all this:
Knife Skills Videos

Bostonian Package

If you are shopping for a cook located in the Boston area, there is no need to guess what cooking equipment they have and don’t have because you can give them a gift certificate to a cooking class with Helen.

Scrambled Eggs in a Microwave (Video)

YouTube Link: Microwave Scrambled Eggs
More Videos: Helen's Kitchen Channel

The two magic ingredients here are milk and flour!  The addition of milk produces a custard like mixture and the addition of flour allows you to cook it quickly over high heat because it slows down egg coagulation.  Flour or cornstarch is what prevents pastry cream from curdling even when brought to a boil.  Add a bit to scrambled eggs and there is no need for low heat.

1/3 cup whole milk
2 tsp all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
1.2 g salt (slightly heaping 1/4 tsp of Diamond Crystal Kosher salt)*
black pepper (pinch)
1-2 tsp chopped chives (optional)

* for other salts (including Morton's Kosher) the volume will be very different.  Use the nutrition info on the side of the box to figure out what 1.2 g of your salt is in teaspoons or experiment and figure out how much you like to use.