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What are the downsides to “low and slow” when cooking meat?

In many cooking resources, “low and slow” is given as a solution to cooking juicy, tender meat (after it has been seared). Cooking slowly is also highly recommended when making stews and various other sauces.

My question is – what are the downsides? Is going too “low and slow” will make your meat soggy? Can you ever be “too slow”? …read more

How do professional bakers mass produce cookies/muffins/cakes/etc

A widely-suggested tip is that one should (swap and) rotate their baking tray(s) half-way through a bake (to promote even cooking).

I was wondering how professional bakeries (read: not factories, actual bakeries) handle this operation when mass producing things like muffins, cookies, etc.? I’m under the impression a real bakery won’t be using 1, but maybe 4+ trays of goods in one particular bake. That seems like a lot of tray (swapping and) rotating…

Or am I missing something? …read more

How much meat do I need to serve 26 adults?

Hello everyone i am cooking for 26 adults and 4 children
menu is :
rare roast beef served on crusty bread with horseradish
main:
slow roasted pork belly with cider and cream gravy
roasted lamb
served with Mediterranean veg and Yorkshire puddings
I really need help with how much raw meat to buy please thank you I am in south africa
Kind regards Lea …read more

Portable induction cooktop with cast iron pans, will using these together break or scratch the cooktop?

I have been looking at buying an induction cooktop for quite some time. Largely the part that has tipped the scales in my favor as of lately is that I would like to be able to use cast iron skillets regularly and my current situation does not allow for that.

I have read and seen some usage of cast iron skillets on these induction cooktops, but from what I have seen almost all of these are ceramic topped. I thought ceramic topped cooktops and cast iron skillets were items that should not be used together.

Could someone please elaborate on the usage of these together? Has anyone used these together and had no issues? …read more

Waxed cheese oozing oil

I have waxed cheddar and Gruyere, using black cheese wax, for about 4 months. When I turned it, I notice oil oozing. The Gruyere was from Bavaria. How and why does this happen through the wax? …read more

Going to make my first pizza tonight, can a large, thick griddle pan substitute for a pizza stone?

Going to make my first homemade pizza tonight, but I do not have a pizza stone. Would a large (9″ x 16″ x 1/2″) cast iron griddle work in place of a pizza stone? The griddle is super black and well seasoned. I also have a new oven, that will be broken in tonight.

I have some dough from a local pizza joint, and all the ingredients for a pepperoni pizza. Any help/advice would be great. Thanks in advance. …read more

Can I cook apple peels in my applesauce in a cheesecloth bundle?

I like to include the peels when I make applesauce to get the benefit of the nutrients in the peels*, but I strain them out afterward for the sake of texture. This is a messy, sticky, time-consuming process, and it makes it harder to maintain a chunky texture to the applesauce.

It occurred to me today that perhaps I could make a sort of bouquet garni with the peels in a cheesecloth pouch and then just lift that out afterward (maybe give it a quick squeeze). Would this work? Would the cheesecloth change the flavor of the sauce? Any other concerns I should watch out for?

*I do know the difference isn’t huge, but old habits die hard. …read more

Why do so many things cook at 180C/350F

It seems that many, if not most recipes, that involve cooking something in an Oven specify a temperature of 180 Celsius or 350 Fahrenheit (if using a Fan oven, 20/70 more if not). This also seems to be true for the instructions on prepared foods. My question is why is this the case? Does it reflect something fundamental about the cooking process, historical accident, etc.?

I’m also keen to know whether this advice should be adjusted given the capabilities of modern ovens/thermometers. …read more

Do Dumplings Mind Being in the Fridge?

I made dumplings from white flour and Atora vegetable suet. The suet is in hard pellets so I’m not worried about having overworked the mixture. I made them at the same time as the stew to save on wash-up. Then I stored them in the fridge for 4 hours before putting them in the pot for 20ish minutes. The pot was in the oven at 140C. They quickly puffed up and filled the top layer of the pot. But when cut open they had a different texture inside and (presumably) the taste of raw suet and flour. Is it likely the fridge or sitting time can explain the failure? …read more