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Food safety of China-imported kitchen utensils

I am considering ordering a few silicone kitchen utensils from China (like this). However, I am concerned about their food safety. The seller assures that the tools are made of “100% Food Grade Silicone” and food safe symbol (fork and wine glass icon) is there – however anyone can print anything on their products… The seller also assures that their products are certified by a number of agencies (“CIQ,EEC,FDA,LFGB,CE / EU,SGS”, of which i can recognize only FDA).

Do you have any experiences with this producer or is there any official online resource (e.g. published by FDA or EU) that can be used to confirm food safety of products offered by a given producer? …read more

Why was sauteed spinach watery?

I sauteed some spinach in a little oil and when eating the oil with spinach I noticed the oil tasted a bit watery and I could have sworn I saw water(likely from spinach) in the oil while it was frying.

Am I doing something wrong when cooking, can you explain these results? As far as I understand, since the oil should be so hot the water should evaporate rapidly. …read more

Where is oil going in grilled chops?

I grilled some fatty lamb chops hoping I could get the oil and use it as part of a sauce. However after cooking I relaised there was only a very little amount of oil in the lower pan.

Do you know what caused this e.g. too high temperature or maybe I didnt cook high enough, whats for sure though is the chops were cooked. Can you give me some guidance on how to extract all the oil from a protein to use as a sauce without making it disappear? …read more

How to seperate fats from liquid and where does unsaturated fats go?

If you have some liquid from roasting, stew or soup etc and you want to separate the fat I believe the normal methods is to get a spoon and remove from the top or let it come to room temperature, solidify and then remove it.

What is the best way to seperate fats from a liquid?
Also if it solidifies and you remove it isn’t it only the saturated fat you are removing while the unsaturated fats stay behind? if so how to go about removing unsaturated fats also? …read more

Culture fresh buttermilk with yogurt

I would like to try culturing fresh buttermilk that I get from whipping butter. I would like to ask if storebought “cultured buttermilk” is done exactly like homemade yogurt, but with fresh buttermilk?

Thus, would the methodology be as follows?

(1) heat buttermilk to simmering
(2) cool down to 110 F
(3) add live yogurt culture
(4) incubate at the proper temperature

Thanks for any insights or those who have attempted this before. …read more

Measuring temperature of diced chicken

I purchased an analogue instant-read meat thermometer (link to the precise product).

I fried some diced chicken in a little lime juice and olive oil in a frying pan on a medium-high heat. I periodically measured the temperature by sticking the end into the centre of a piece of chicken.

At no point (even after 10+ mins) could I get the thermometer to read above 40 C (whereas it should reach at least 68 C), even increasing the heat had little effect. I ended up overcooking the chicken in an attempt to increase the temperature measurement.

I stuck the thermometer in boiling water to check it was working properly and it indeed gave a reasonable measurement.

Question: Can anyone explain what I may have been doing wrong?

Is there a knack to performing the measurements? Are the thermometers intended for measuring large pieces of meat only? Or did I likely fail to heat the chicken correctly? In which case, what should I do to get the temperature up? Like I said, even on a high heat still wouldn’t push the temperature above 40 C. …read more

Would cooking a leg of lamb for 12 hours be a problem?

I found a nice recipe for a leg of lamb. It is however supposed to be baked for four hours.

It would be more practical for me if I could let it bake for 12 hours (overnight) — would 12 hours vs. 4 hours be a problem?

I was planning to seal the pot and set the oven to 110°C (230°F) …read more

Is this a bad apple?

I cut my apple open this morning and found that it had an unexpected consistency emanating from the core. I couldn’t find much about what’s going on here other than maybe this is some kind of mold (seems unlikely).

What’s going on with this apple?

This particular apple was part of an Amazon Fresh delivery. I’ve had about 10 of them up to this point, all of which were good apples.

I took a bite before throwing it out. It tasted fine and the texture is the same as far as I can tell (dense, fibrous). Ultimately I decided to toss it erring on the side of caution.

…read more

How to raise the cake high for pound cakes

We are baking pound cake, I am all happy about the taste, but i have two below problems, please help.

1) After we bake the cake and take it out, we observed after a week my top layer of the cake is moist and the bottom we see all the oil is settled down, making the cake look oily from bottom. The mid region of cake is very dry and not much moist. Is there anything I am missing to make my cake evenly moist and less dry?
2) How do I get high raise of the cake, we are good raise but as much as other cakes I have seen around, is there some magic which needs in there to make my cake raise high?

Any advise is highly appreciated. Thank You. …read more

Nut-free “Almond Paste” filling

How can i create a closely matched “Almond Paste” (for croissant) without using almond meal/paste/butter/products/etc? I have a nut-free almond flavour that should be okay for the flavouring component, looking more for a texture match here.

Any ideas? …read more