Eggs

Cast Iron Pans

April 13, 2018

Chefs love cast iron’s durability and its ability to evenly retain heat. What’s old is new again. Cast iron comes in all sizes from pans that hold a single fried egg to 20-inch giants that weigh 25 pounds and take up two burners. You can pick up a cast iron pan for $25 to $300. I like 10-inch skillets for everyday cooking, which are between four to six pounds and can comfortably accommodate a pack of chicken thighs. Remember that a bigger pan is a heavier pan, which limits how easily you can maneuver it as you cook.

Make sure to season your cast iron pan. Use a paper towel to rub your pan all over with a very light coat of neutral oil like grapeseed or vegetable oil and then place in a 500-degree oven for an hour. You want your pan to have a matte dark finish. Remove from the oven and let cool. Rub another very light coat of oil all over before storing. The very best thing that you can do to maintain that new seasoning is to get cooking. Each time you cook a steak or chicken thighs, the fat adds another coat to the pan’s surface, which will create a glassy finish over time. Re-season when your pan starts to look dry and dull or if you can’t remember the last time you cooked in it. Always rub you pan down with a thin coat of neutral oil before storing.

Just because you can cook it in cast iron doesn’t mean that you should! There are some foods that you definitely should not cook in your cast iron. Fish is not something that I would cook in cast iron unless I want to infuse next day’s pancakes with the essence of fish. Tomato sauce’s high acidity reacts with cast iron, which creates an unpleasant metallic flavor. I’d skip cooking scrambled eggs in cast iron unless I want to be on dish duty for an hour or two after breakfast.

Wash your pan! Yes, you do need to wash your pan. Each time you cook with cast iron a few burnt and crusty food bits inevitably seem to stick to the pan. If you don’t scrub it clean between uses, those bits will fossilize under subsequent layers of seasoning, which create an irregular surface that will never become truly nonstick (the opposite of what you want). Wash your pan with hot water and a drop of dish soap while it’s still warm. Take care not to let the pan soak in water. Wipe down the pan and then set it over a low flame for a few minutes to fully dry. Rub all over with a very light coat of neutral oil before storing (just like you would after seasoning it). These steps are crucial for keeping your pan in fighting form against Public Enemy Number One – RUST! If you ever do have spot rust just use and old toothbrush dipped in distilled vinegar to scrub it off, let it dry, and then rub in a drop of oil. If you make a regular habit of cleaning your cast iron you’ll have a faithful companion for life.

“Work With What You Got!”

©Tiny New York Kitchen © 2018 All Rights Reserved

Boiled VS. Steamed

October 4, 2017

Steaming eggs is the secret to hard-boiled eggs that are consistently perfect.

Don’t place an egg in boiling water. That lowers the temperature of the water and makes it hard to nail down a precise cooking time.

Do steam in a steamer basket. The eggs don’t touch the water, which means they don’t lower the water temperature, so you get consistently perfect results.

Bring 1 inch water to rolling boil in medium-size saucepan over a high heat. Place eggs in steamer basket. Transfer basket to saucepan. Cover, reduce heat to a medium-low and cook eggs for 13 minutes. When eggs are almost finished cooking, combine 2 cups ice cubes and 2 cups cold water in medium-size bowl. Use tongs or spoon to transfer eggs to ice bath. Let sit for 15 minutes. Peel before using.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Make The Most Of Tomatoes

September 8, 2017

The end of summer is fresh produce heaven, which includes delicious vine ripened tomatoes. What do you do when you have a tomato abundance?
Here are some tips for making the most of the end of summer tomatoes.

Sliced: Incorporate into sandwiches or add to basil and mozzarella for a Caprese Salad.

Chopped: You only need a few chopped heirloom tomatoes, mozzarella, chopped basil, and olive oil for a colorful no-cook pasta sauce.

Puréed: There’s nothing like an icy cold gazpacho on a warm day.

Salsa: Fresh salsa is a must have condiment for grilled steaks or shrimp, brown rice and beans, scrambled eggs, and of course, chips.

Grilled: Toss cherry tomatoes with olive oil, garlic, and herbs. Then cook in a grill basket until charred. Top fish, chicken, pasta, and charred slices of bread.

Stored: Keep tomatoes at room temperature until ripe and then use within a day or two. Don’t put them in the refrigerator as it affects their flavor and texture.

Preserved: Roasted, dehydrated, or stewed – savor the season by saving a taste of summer for later.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved

100 Years Ago In America

February 17, 2017

The average life expectancy for men was 47 years old.
Americans spent 1/3 of their income on food.
Children remained under their parents’ roofs until they were married.
Fuel for cars was only sold in drug stores.
Only 14 percent of the homes had a bathtub.
Only 8 percent of the homes had a telephone.
Ten percent of infants died in their first year.
The maximum speed limit in most cities was 10 mph.
Men wore blue serge suits at work.
The tallest structure in the world was not in the U.S., but was France’s Eiffel Tower.
The average U.S. wage in 1910 was 22 cents per hour.
The average U.S. worker made between $200 and $400 per year.
A competent accountant could expect to earn $2,000 per year.
A dentist could make $2,500 per year.
A veterinarian could make between $1,500 and $4,000 per year.
A mechanical engineer could make about $5,000 per year.
More than 95 percent of all doctors had no college education. Instead, they attended so-called medical schools, many of which were condemned in the press and the government as “substandard.”
Sugar cost 4 cents per pound.
Eggs were 14 cents per dozen.
Coffee was 15 cents per pound.
Most women only washed their hair once a month. They used Borax or egg yolks for shampoo.
Canada passed a law that prohibited poor people from entering into their country for any reason.
The five leading causes of death were: Pneumonia and Influenza, Tuberculosis, Diarrhea, Heart Disease, and Stroke.
The American flag had 45 stars.
The population in Law Vegas, Nevada was only 30.
Crossword puzzles, canned beer and iced tea hadn’t been invented yet.
There was neither a Mother’s Day nor a Father’s Day.
Two out of every 10 adults could not read or write.
Only 6 percent of all Americans had graduated from high school.
Marijuana, heroin and morphine were all available over the counter at local drug stores. Back then pharmacists said, “Heroin clears the complexion, gives buoyancy to the mind, regulates the stomach, bowels, and is, in fact, a guardian of health.”
18 percent of households had at least one full-time servant or domestic help.
There were about 230 reported murders in the ENTIRE United States.

It’s amazing how fast everything has changed and it’s impossible to imagine what it will be like in another 100 years!

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Add More Greens To Your Life

February 3, 2017

Dark Leafy Greens Give You More Nutritional Bang For Your Buck. Add More Greens To Your Diet And Most Likely You’ll Feel Much Better.

Add Cooked Greens To Frittatas, Breakfast Tacos And Poached Eggs.

Stir Greens Into Soups And Stews During The Last Few Minutes Of Cooking.

Start Your Day With A Smoothie Packed With Kale.

Add Greens To Grain dishes Or Serve Grains Over A Bed Of Steamed Chard.

Add Sautéed Greens To Cooked Whole Wheat Pasta Or Stir Into Pasta Sauces.

Make Sure To Wash Dark Leafy Greens In A Sink Full Of Water To Remove Dirt And Sand. Dry Well.

Store Your Greens In A Bag Along With A Paper Towel In The Crisping Drawer Of Your Refrigerator, Or Quickly Blanch And Freeze Greens To Use For Quick Sides And Easy Meal Prep Later.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Food That Boost Energy Levels

January 28, 2017

It’s January and many of us are working towards our health goals. Choosing foods that give us energy are important in keeping on track. Some foods that boost energy levels include cashews, chicken, salmon, and beans.

Cashews
Cashews are high in magnesium and help to convert sugar into energy. Magnesium deficiency can lead to low energy levels and nuts that are high in magnesium, including cashews; can provide that mid-afternoon jolt some people are seeking. Cashews are high in calories, so it’s best for those looking to shed pounds or maintain a healthy weight to adhere to serving suggestion guidelines.

Skinless Chicken
Alertness tends to increase when the brain produces the neurotransmitter dopamine and the hormone norepinephrine. Skinless chicken contains an amino acid known as tyrosine that helps in the production of both dopamine and norepinephrine. If skinless chicken is not available, other foods that may provide this same effect include fish, lean beef, and eggs. In addition, lean meats like skinless chicken contain enough vitamin B to help ease insomnia.

Salmon
Omega-3 fatty acids can help the body fight inflammation, which has been linked to a host of ailments, including chronic fatigue. Salmon is also high in protein, which can eliminate the mid-to-late afternoon hunger pangs that can derail healthy diets and contribute to weight gain.

Beans
Beans are loaded with fiber, and that’s a great thing for energy levels. Like magnesium, which can also be found in beans, fiber takes a while to digest, extending the energy-boosting properties of foods loaded with fiber. In spite of the growing movement to eat and live healthier, many still do not include enough fiber in their diets. Eating beans is a great place to start getting that much needed fiber.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved

High Altitude Cooking

January 25, 2017

Most recipes have been perfected for use at seal level. At higher altitudes, adjustments in the cooking time, temperature, and ingredients could be necessary.

At sea level, water boils at 212 degrees. With each additional 500 feet of altitude, the boiling point drops 1 degree. Even though the boiling point is lower, it takes longer to generate the heat required to cook food. Therefore, at high altitudes, foods boiled in water (such as pasta and beans) will take longer to come to a boil and will require longer cooking times than recipes suggest. The processing times for canning foods and the blanching times for freezing vegetables will vary, too.

At high altitudes, cake recipes may need slight adjustments in the proportions of flour, leavening, liquid, eggs, etc. These adjustments will vary from recipe to recipe, and not set guidelines can be given. Many cake mixes now carry special directions on the label for high-altitude preparation.

High altitudes can also affect the rising of doughs and batters, deep-frying, candy making, and other aspects of food preparation. For complete information and special recipes for your area, call or write to the home agent at your county cooperative extension office or to the home economics department of your local utility company or state university.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Keep It Light

January 7, 2017

Generally animal products are higher in fat than plant foods, but it’s not necessary to cut out all meat and dairy products to keep your fat intake reasonable. Low-fat dairy foods, lean and well trimmed meat, and skinless poultry provide the same amounts of vitamins and minerals as their fattier counterparts. Skinless poultry, fish, dry beans, and split peas are the “slimmest” foods in this category. By removing the skin from poultry, you reduce the fat by almost one half. Most seafood is low in fat and also contains beneficial omega-3 oils, which have been linked to lowering blood cholesterol. Dry beans also provide the body with fiber, which is necessary for digestion.

You can enjoy red meat if you choose lean cuts and trim away all the visible fat (marbled fat cannot be trimmed away). Here are some good choices:

*Beef eye round, top round, tenderloin, top sirloin, flank steak, top loin, and ground beef. Choose ground sirloin; it’s 90 to 93 percent lean.

*Veal cutlets (from the leg) and loin chops.

*Pork tenderloin, boneless top loin roast, loin chops, and boneless sirloin chops.

*Lamb, boneless leg (shank portions), loin roast, loin chops, and leg cubes for kabobs.

Here are some suggestions to make trimming excess fat from your diet easier:

*Choose lean cuts of meat and trim off all the visible fat before cooking. Remove skin from poultry before or after cooking.

*Broil meat on a rack so the fat can drop away.

*Substitute ground chicken or ground turkey for ground beef. Look for ground turkey breast or chicken breast; otherwise, it may contain skin and therefore have as much fat as ground beef.

*Substitute protein-packed dried legumes, like beans and lentils, for meat in casseroles.

*Chill soups and stews overnight so you can remove all the hardened fat from the surface.

*Be skimpy with fat. Use nonstick pans and nonstick cooking spray, or sauté in a small amount of broth or water. Don’t just pour oil into a skillet; it’s easy to add too much. Measure or use a pastry brush to coat pans with a thin layer of oil. When baking, coat pans with a spritz of nonstick cooking spray instead of oils or fats. Kitchenware shops carry oil sprayers you can fill with your favorite oil.

*Experiment with low fat or skim milk, low fat sour cream and cheese, and nonfat yogurt. They provide the same amounts of calcium and protein as the whole milk varieties, but with less fat or none at all.

*When making dips, substitute nonfat plain yogurt for sour cream.

*Use fresh herbs and zesty seasonings literally.

*Choose angel food cake instead of pound cake, especially when making cake-based desserts like trifle.

*To reduce fat and cholesterol, you can substitute 2 egg whites for 1 whole egg in recipes, but don’t substitute egg whites for all the whole eggs when baking. The dessert will have better texture and flavor if you retain a cold or two.

*Replace sour cream with buttermilk or yogurt in recipes for baked goods.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Things You Can Do With An Egg Slicer

January 6, 2017

Making precise slices of softer, smaller foods in a snap, literally, with this tool designed to hold slippery, hard-cooked eggs in its cradle as the wires cut through. Cleanup is just as speedy – use a kitchen brush and warm, soapy water.

It can quick slice soft fruits and vegetables such as peeled kiwis, hulled strawberries, white or cremini mushrooms, and pitted olives.

Create perfect rounds from soft cheeses, like fresh mozzarella balls and goat cheese.

Make even pats from a stick of butter.

Be creative and try using an egg slicer on soft foods that you’re preparing. The possibilities are endless.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Cakes

December 15, 2016

I love to bake all year long, but during the holidays I’m on “baking overdrive.” To make better cakes here are some simple tips to help you with the best outcome possible.

Don’t use cold eggs. The eggs really should be at room temperature, otherwise the mixture won’t emulsify properly. If you’re short on time place eggs in a bowl of warm water for 15 minutes.

Make sure to measure all ingredients precisely. Baking is an art form, but also a science.

Position pans as close to the center of the oven as possible. If you’re placing more than one pan in the oven, they should not touch each other or the oven walls. If your oven isn’t wide enough to put pans side by side, place them on different racks.

If a recipe calls for 1 cup of sifted flour, then first sift the flour and then measure it. If it calls for 1 cup flour sifted, measure the flour, then sift it. It may seem subtle, but it can make the difference between a light, fluffy cake and a heavy one.

Allow at least 20 minutes for your oven to preheat. It’s best to turn the oven on before you start working on your recipe.

Avoid opening the oven door. Opening the oven door too often can make a cake fall, so use the window in your oven door to check the cake’s process when possible.

Remember that each oven heats differently. Check for doneness 10 minutes before the recipe suggests. For most recipes, a cake is ready when it starts pulling away from the sides of the pan and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Invest in wire cooling racks. Cakes cool faster and don’t get soggy when set out on a rack. Leave them in the pans for 10 to 15 minutes before unmolding, and then place on a rack to cool completely before frosting. Angel, chiffon and sponge cakes should be left in the pan to cool to prevent collapsing.

Unfrosted cakes can be stored, well wrapped in plastic, at room temperature for 24 hours. If storing unfrosted cakes for more than 24 hours, it is best to freeze them rather than refrigerate them. Wrap the layers in plastic wrap and then heavy-duty foil to freeze, let cake thaw in the refrigerator before frosting.

To store frosted cakes, keep at room temperature under a cake dome or large bowl unless the recipe specifies refrigeration.

For smooth and easy cake removal, prep your pans properly. When a recipe calls for greasing and flouring, place a piece of parchment or waxed paper on the bottom of a pan (trace and cut it to fit). Coat the sides and bottom with softened butter, and then dust with flour, turning the pan on its side to get full coverage and tapping out the excess. For chocolate cakes, swap in cocoa powder for flour.

Angel, chiffon, and sponge cakes should go into clean, untreated pans since they need to adhere to the sides in order to rise properly.

Happy Baking!

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2016 All Rights Reserve

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