Random Food Questions Thread

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by kwilkinson, Apr 8, 2010.

  1. ChicagoRon

    ChicagoRon Senior member

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    Yeah.. those are the kinds of things I buy dirt cheap in chinatown
     


  2. gomestar

    gomestar Super Yelper

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    I'll take a gander down, any particular streets you suggest wandering?
     


  3. ChicagoRon

    ChicagoRon Senior member

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    I'll take a gander down, any particular streets you suggest wandering?
    You'll have to ask a local... I can tell you where to go in chicago c-town. My guess would be to start on canal and head south right in the middle on Mott or Elizabeth
     


  4. jpeirpont

    jpeirpont Senior member

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    Why do they cook everything in La Cucina with extra virgin olive oil? They even use it to fry.
     


  5. why

    why Senior member

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    Why do they cook everything in La Cucina with extra virgin olive oil? They even us it to fry.

    That's generally how it's done in Italy.
     


  6. jpeirpont

    jpeirpont Senior member

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    That's generally how it's done in Italy.

    I've fried things in EV olive oil, I didn't like it much.
     


  7. ChicagoRon

    ChicagoRon Senior member

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    OK... here's a random food question...

    what's the difference between an "oil poach" and a "fry" or "Sautee"
     


  8. kwilkinson

    kwilkinson Having a Ball

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    Oil poaching means the object is completely submerged in fat and cooked at a lower temp (usually 160-180F)
    Fry can be shallow fried, with the object sticking out of the oil, or deep fried, with the object entirely submerged, but denotes a much higher temperature.
    Sauteeing is a small amount of fat at a relatively high temperature and the food is agitated often.
     


  9. ChicagoRon

    ChicagoRon Senior member

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    Thanks.. I knew the difference between a fry and a sautee... but I was not clear on the oil poach. My understanding of the word poach was that it is roughly synonymous with "boil"... and boiling in oil is deep frying.
     


  10. itsstillmatt

    itsstillmatt The Liberator Dubiously Honored

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    Thanks.. I knew the difference between a fry and a sautee... but I was not clear on the oil poach. My understanding of the word poach was that it is roughly synonymous with "boil"... and boiling in oil is deep frying.
    Well, poach just means to cook in hot water. You really shouldn't be boiling meats... ever. Remember, also, that poaching in oil at the same temp as water, say 180, will take longer than in water since oil is less dense and doesn't conduct heat as well.
     


  11. ChicagoRon

    ChicagoRon Senior member

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    Well, poach just means to cook in hot water. You really shouldn't be boiling meats... ever. Remember, also, that poaching in oil at the same temp as water, say 180, will take longer than in water since oil is less dense and doesn't conduct heat as well.
    That's good advice... I always poach my eggs in boiling water... they come out okay, but maybe they would be better if I went down to a simmer. Meanwhile, I thought a stock or soup could be boiled... vs. an actual meat like a brisket or rabbit that you would braise - or is this technically another term that depends heavily on level of submersion rather than temperature?
     


  12. gomestar

    gomestar Super Yelper

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    That's good advice... I always poach my eggs in boiling water... they come out okay, but maybe they would be better if I went down to a simmer.

    we do ours in a low simmer and they come out superb. Also, we boil the eggs in shell for 30 seconds, shock, and then crack into the water.
     


  13. itsstillmatt

    itsstillmatt The Liberator Dubiously Honored

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    That's good advice... I always poach my eggs in boiling water... they come out okay, but maybe they would be better if I went down to a simmer. Meanwhile, I thought a stock or soup could be boiled... vs. an actual meat like a brisket or rabbit that you would braise - or is this technically another term that depends heavily on level of submersion rather than temperature?
    Boiled stock will be less clear than simmered, but I cook stock in a pressure cooker because the flavor and gelatin extraction is about a thousand times better. It clouds a little, but not too much. Basically, meat is protein, and protein molecules react certain ways at certain temperatures. When you are braising, what you are trying to do is to convert collagen into gelatin, which softens the meat, but as the internal temperature gets higher, the meat proteins squeeze out more liquid. On the other hand, collagen turns into gelatin faster at a higher temp. That is why people have cooked things like 7-hour lamb, or cooked slowly in the fireplace for days. It gives the time for collagen transformation, but without massive drying like in a boiling liquid. It is also the theory behind sous-vide... if you cook at 140 for 2 days, you convert all of the collagen to gelatin, but the meat doesn't gray and dry out. So, all things equal, braise at the lowest temp possible, but realize that it will take longer. A 200 degree oven is great, because the meat probably will never get over 160 with air being such a poor conductor of heat. Poaching is similar. You don't boil sausages because they get grainy. You put them in hot water for a longer time. The same problem arises when you add water to a sausage pan, as discussed earlier in the thread. Temp of the meat gets too high, and texture is compromised. Fish and meat are the same. Of course, this is just my opinion, at least some of it.
     


  14. why

    why Senior member

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    Remember, also, that poaching in oil at the same temp as water, say 180, will take longer than in water since oil is less dense and doesn't conduct heat as well.

    Thermodynamics are a bit off here...
     


  15. HORNS

    HORNS Senior member

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    Thermodynamics are a bit off here...

    How so? Unless the oil circulates to allow a maximum temperature difference between the food and the oil, transmission of energy from the heat source to the food being cooked can be slowed.
     


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