Salt

Reducing Sodium In Your Diet

April 5, 2018

Let’s face it; most of us eat way too much salt. A high-sodium diet can increase risk of high blood pressure (hypertension), which can lead to cardiovascular and kidney disease. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend limiting sodium intake to less than 2,300 mg per day, which is about 1 teaspoon of salt. The good news is that reducing the amount of salt you use will retrain your taste buds to sense other flavors. You won’t even miss it.

Bland food is such a bore, but how can we keep sodium in check without sacrificing flavor?

Here are some suggestions to reduce salt in your diet:

Remove the salt shaker from the table when you eat.

Limit process foods, including cured, pickled, salted, or brined products.

Focus on fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables without sauces or seasonings.

When choosing canned options, look for “no salt added” or “low sodium.”

Cook at home so you have control over how much salt you add.

Flavored vinegar, onions, garlic, and citrus also add tons of flavor without the sodium.

Herbs and spices are the key to flavor. Add dried varieties during cooking and fresh herbs at the end of cooking or when plating a dish. Thyme, mint, lemongrass, dill, basil, oregano, chives, and parsley are great herbs to use. Spices like pepper, ginger, chili powder, and cinnamon are excellent spices to flavor your food.

“Work With What You Got!”

©Tiny New York Kitchen © 2018 All Rights Reserved

How To Cook Romanesco Broccoli

January 18, 2018

Cut Into Pieces (like you would broccoli)
Steam
Add 1 to 2 Tablespoons, Butter, Ghee or Clarified Butter
Add 1 Tablespoon Spice Mixture Of Your Choice

OR

Preheat Oven to 425 degrees. Line Baking Sheet With Parchment Paper
Scatter Pieces Onto Baking Sheet
Drizzle With Olive Oil
Season With Kosher Salt & Pepper
Place In Oven 15 to 20 Minutes Until Tender

“Work With What You Got!”

©Tiny New York Kitchen © 2018 All Rights Reserved

Brussels Sprouts

October 16, 2017

I like to eat seasonal fruits and vegetables. Brussels sprouts are a hearty winter vegetable and are sweetest and most tender after a hard frost. They are a good source of fiber, antioxidants, and vitamin C. Look for young, small green sprouts that have tightly formed buds. Avoid any yellowing, which means that the sprouts will be bitter, sulfurous, and tough. Use fresh sprouts within a few days after purchasing. Sprouts sold on the stalk tend to keep longer. Brussels sprouts can be boiled, braised, or steamed. Cut an X at the base of each sprout to allow for a more even cooking. Add a bit of butter, olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic, onions, or herbs of your choice. Brussels sprouts also make a nice addition to stir fry, noodles, and other dishes. As always, be creative and “work with what you got!”

“Work With What You Got!”

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

Grilled Pineapple

June 9, 2017

Grilled pineapple is so very versatile because you can use it for savory or sweet, hot or cold dishes. Grill over indirect heat and the sugars in the pineapple concentrate bringing out a sweet and meaty fruit that is ideal for endless summer recipes.

6 Ways To Use Grilled Pineapple
Slice and serve with grilled pork or fish.

Cut into chunks and toss with salt and lime juice for a smoky fruit salad.

Muddle and use as the base for a sweet-savory cocktail.

Dice and mix with chopped cilantro and chiles for salsa.

Purée and spoon over vanilla ice cream or good Greek yogurt.

Top with ice cream or sorbet.

“Work With What You Got!”

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

Citrus

February 9, 2017

Oranges and lemons were first brought to the Americas by Spanish explorers. Today the United States is among the world’s top citrus growers and consumers. To choose the best citrus select fruit that is heavy and not too soft. When selecting oranges don’t worry about the color, as it is not a good indicator of how tasty the orange will be. For lemons and limes the juiciest fruit gives a little when you gently squeeze them. I like to roll lemons and limes around on the counter with the palm of my hand to loosen up the juice before cutting into them.

Oranges, grapefruits, lemons, and limes are the most commonly found citrus fruits. Lemons, limes, and oranges come into season just when we need them the most, when days are short and the weather is cold. Rich in vitamin C and fiber, they add a zesty boost to almost any meal. During the winter months, look for other varieties, such as blood oranges, Key limes, and Meyer lemons, as well as grapefruit-like pomelos and tiny kumquats.

We need vitamin C to stay healthy and citrus fruit is a delicious way to add lots of this vital nutrient to your diet. Start the day with orange juice, add a squeeze of lemon to warm water later in the day, or pack grapefruit sections to enjoy as a snack at work or school.

Citrus stars in everything from sweet and savory dishes to non-food uses. Simmer slices of lemons, limes, and oranges in water to use as a natural air freshener, use lemon juice as a gentle alternative to laundry bleach, or combine lemon juice with olive oil to use as furniture polish.

Much of the citrus flavor is in the zest. Finely grate the peel and add to anything that needs a punch of citrus flavor. To get perfectly grated zest without bitter white pith, use a fine zester.

Make your own flavored salt by processing coarse salt, freshly ground black pepper, and citrus zest in a food processor. Add this mix to soups, stews, meats and pasta dishes.

Use a vegetable peeler to remove large strips of peel and add to hot tea, mulled wine, soups, and stews to add bold flavor.

To segment citrus like a pro cut a thin slice from either end of the fruit to make a base. Pare away the peel and white part of the rind. Cut into the fruit center between one section and the membrane. Cut along the other side, between section and membrane. Repeat.

www.tinynewyorkkitchen.com

“Work With What You Got!”

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

Roasting Your Turkey

November 24, 2016

Remove Turkey From Refrigerator At Least 1 Hour Prior To Roasting.

Preheat Oven To 325 Degrees.

Place Turkey In Sink And Remove Neck & Giblets.

Place In Roasting Pan And Brush With Melted Butter. Season With Salt & Pepper.

Place Turkey In Lower Third Of The Oven And Roast For 10 Minutes Per Pound.

To Determine If Turkey Is Done, Place Thermometer Between Thigh & Breast. Temperature Should Register Between 160 To 165 Degrees And Juices Should Run Clear.

When Turkey Is Done, Remove From Oven, Cover Loosely With Foil, And Allow To Rest 30 To 45 Minutes, Which Allows Time To Heat Side Dishes.

Carve & Enjoy!

Approximate Cooking Times Based On 10 Minutes Per Pound At 325 Degrees:

9 Pound Turkey: 1 1/2 To 1 3/4 Hours
12 Pound Turkey: 2 To 2 1/4 Hours
14 Pound Turkey: 2 1/4 To 2 1/2 Hours
16 Pound Turkey: 2 1/2 To 2 3/4 Hours
18 Pound Turkey: 3 To 3 1/4 Hours
20 Pound Turkey: 3 1/2 To 3 3/4 Hours
22 Pound Turkey: 4 To 4 1/4 Hours
25 Pound Turkey: 4 1/4 To 4 1/2 Hours

If You Have Stuffed Your Turkey Then Add More Time.

“Work With What You Got!”

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

Turkey

November 22, 2016

The turkey came originally from America and was first domesticated by the Aztecs in Mexico. The Spanish introduced turkeys into Europe and they soon became a popular choice in France, Italy and Britain.

When early settlers from Britain, France and Holland crossed the Atlantic to North America, the vast flocks of turkey that roamed wild provided them with sustenance. They were plentiful and so easy to trap or shoot that the older children of the family were given the responsibility of catching them. The Native Americans meanwhile taught the new settlers the rudiments of farming, and in November 1621, on the first anniversary of their arrival, the Pilgrims entertained the locals to a feast, at the center of which was the turkey. Ever since, this has been the traditional bird served at Thanksgiving.

Turkeys are available fresh, chilled, or frozen all year round. When buying a whole bird, look for a plump well-rounded breast and legs and clear, soft and evenly colored skin. Avoid birds that are bruised, with blemishes or torn skin or any that have been badly or unevenly plucked. Turkeys vary enormously in weight.

When you’re ready to purchase your turkey it’s easy to get confused on what size to get. A good guild to go by is to figure approximately 1 1/4 pounds per person. This makes enough for the meal and provides a decent amount of leftovers.

To store your turkey place it in a large, deep dish and cover it completely with plastic wrap. Store it in the coolest part of the refrigerator; making sure that it does not come in contact with other foods.

Thaw a frozen turkey in the refrigerator for 2 to 4 days. Estimate 24 hours for every 5 pounds, so 2 days for a 10 pounder, 3 days for a 15 pounder, etc.

And then there is always the frozen turkey emergency that goes like this, “Help, help, it’s Wednesday, and my turkey is still frozen!!!” It’s been a long time, but I’ve been in this predicament. What you do is leave the turkey in its wrapper and put it in a large-size container. A lobster pot works well. Fill the container with cold tap water and let it sit for 30 minutes. Dump out the water and refill. Let it sit another 30 minutes. Repeat until the turkey is thawed, then roast immediately or transfer to the refrigerator.

The good news is that you can brine or dry cure your turkey while it defrosts in the refrigerator. What a Godsend that is! Use a lighter brine solution, which is about 1/2 cup kosher salt per gallon of water, plus sugar and spices). If you’re dry curing, use the standard recipe. You’re turkey should stay below 40 degrees while brining. You don’t need to brine or cure a kosher or butterball type supermarket frozen turkey. These come pre-brined. If you want to be able to put your own flavor stamp on your meal, then get a natural or untreated bird and do it yourself. If you plan on brining for 2 days use the weaker solution that I just mentioned. If you plan to brine for 24 hours or less, then bump it up to 1 cup kosher salt per gallon of water. Then add an equal amount of sugar. I don’t always brine, but when I do I’ve been known to throw an assortment of flavorings in the brine. Flavorings that you could add to your brine could be: apples, lemons, oranges, onions, garlic, shallots, peppercorns, bay leaves, cinnamon sticks, cloves, allspice berries, juniper berries, mustard seeds, fennel seeds, coriander seeds, rosemary, sage, thyme, savory, parsley, or oregano. You can also replace half the water with sweet cider, hard cider, vegetable stock, turkey stock, chicken stock, beer, white wine, or red wine. If you want to dry cure then use about 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt for every pound of turkey. Then add spices to your taste.

Stuffing your turkey is a personal preference. I always stuff the bird because I love how it tastes when cooked inside the turkey. It does slow down the cooking process, however. Never stuff the turkey in advance of cooking. The stuffing can be made in advance, but the turkey should not be stuffed until just before it is placed in the oven. Weigh the stuffing and add this to the weight of the bird before calculating the cooking time. Thoroughly rinse the body cavity of the bird under cold running water, and then drain it well. Wipe the turkey, inside and out, with paper towels. Press the stuffing inside the shallow neck cavity. Make sure not to pack it in too tightly. Turn the bird over and pull the neck skin over the stuffing. Now it’s time for a little turkey bondage and truss the bird (tuck the wing tips under the breast and tie the legs together) and then cook for the calculated time. Never shorten the cooking time because although the meat may appear cooked, extra time must be allowed for cooking the stuffing thoroughly.

If you choose not to stuff your turkey then place aromatics in the body cavity of the bird. Cut a large onion in half and stud each half with 4 to 6 cloves. Place this in the body cavity of the bird. Cut an orange and a lemon into quarters and add these, together with 3 or 4 bay leaves, 4 to 6 fresh sage sprigs, and 2 to 3 fresh thyme sprigs. Add 1 cinnamon stick or 1 blade of mace for a festive hint of warm spice.

Turkeys are super easy to roast, but require a little more attention than smaller birds. Check to make sure the oven shelves are in the correct position before heating the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the prepared bird on a rack in a large-size roasting pan. Smear the turkey breast generously with butter, season with salt & pepper and place in the oven. Baste the turkey from time to time during cooking. When the breast has browned, cover with foil to protect it and continue cooking. Remove the covering foil for the final 20 minutes of cooking. To check if the meat is cooked, insert a skewer into the thickest part of the thigh. If the juices run clear and the meat is white, it is cooked. If the juices are pink and the meat is soft and pink, the turkey is not ready. Return it to the oven and check again after 20 minutes. Cooking times will differ depending on whether your bird was purchased fresh or frozen. Plan on 20 minutes per pound in a 350 degree oven for a defrosted turkey and 10 to 15 minutes per pound for fresh. Remember to add more time if you’re turkey is stuffed. You should have an instant-read thermometer in your kitchen drawer. Insert the thermometer into the breast (all the way to the bone) and if it reads 160 degrees you’re good to go. You may also measure the thigh by inserting the thermometer into the thickest part, but not touching the bone, and it should read 165 degrees.

Remove the turkey from the oven and cover it closely with foil. Leave it to rest for at least 30 minutes. This will even out the temperature and make it easier to carve. I know some chefs who let it rest for 2 hours, but I don’t think that one needs to wait that long. If you wish to make gravy in the roasting pan, transfer the bird to a carving plate.

When you’ve let your bird rest awhile remove the trussing string. Hold the bird steady in position with a carving fork. Cut off the legs, then cut these in half or carve the meat from the bones. Make a horizontal cut across the breast above the wing. Carve neat and even vertical slices off the breast. Repeat on the other side of the bird. Arrange slices on a warmed platter. Add the turkey legs or sliced meat to the platter or set them aside for serving separately. Scoop out the stuffing and serve with the meat.

“Work With What You Got!”

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

The Secret Ingredient For Ridiculously Crispy Chicken

October 20, 2016

The Secret Ingredient For Ridiculously Crispy Chicken

For years I experimented with ways to make chicken extra crispy until one day a chef friend and I were discussing this issue. He told me that the trick is to use baking powder on “skin-on” poultry. I was a bit surprised and put it to the test myself. Holy smokes it does work!

Apparently, baking powder raises the skin’s pH levels, which will allow proteins to break down, giving you a crispier and more evenly browned outcome. Combining with poultry’s natural juices, it forms carbon dioxide gas that creates a layer of small bubbles. These bubbles will increase the skin’s surface area, which allows it to develop a crunchy texture once cooked.

It’s so simple. All you need to do is mix together 1 part baking powder to 3 parts kosher salt (for example 1 tablespoon baking powder & 3 tablespoons kosher salt – of course it all depends on what size poultry you’re cooking). Evenly sprinkle over the skin’s surface and then place in the refrigerator, uncovered, between 12 to 24 hours. Without rinsing cook it any way you want to (roast, grill, fry). It’s really that easy. You just need a bit of planning, but it’s worth it.

You can use it on chicken, turkey, duck, game hens, or goose. Thanksgiving is coming up so you may want to give it a try on your Thanksgiving turkey.

“Work With What You Got!”

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

Cooking Pasta

October 13, 2016

Cooking Pasta

There is no salt in pasta dough, so make sure to put enough salt in the cooking water. Use plenty of water, which should be about 4 quarts per 1 pound of pasta. Because salt actually slows down the rate at which water comes to a boil, add salt after the water is boiling. Use a heaping teaspoon for every quart of water. If you don’t think that you have enough salt in the water, then taste it, and you should be able to detect the salt.

I like to serve pasta from a warmed serving bowl. Place the bowl in the sink and set the colander inside of the bowl. Drain the pasta, letting the water drain into the bowl. Lift up the pasta in the colander, give it a good shake to drain further, and then pour the pasta into the still warm cooking pot. Make sure to NEVER rinse the pasta. This is a big no no. Then add the sauce to the pasta, in the cooking pot, and combine. Pour out the water from the serving bowl. I always reserve a cup or two of the pasta water in case I want to thin out the sauce a bit. Dry the bowl and transfer the pasta to the warm bowl and serve. It’s that easy.

“Work With What You Got!”

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

Dried Beans

October 6, 2016

Dried Beans

Purchase dried beans from a source with good turnover. When I’m travel to Tucson I love to stock up on dried beans from Native Seeds, who have a nice selection of beautiful beans (http://shop.nativeseeds.org/collections/beans) The longer the beans are on the shelf, the drier they become, and the longer they will take to cook. If you’ve ever cooked beans that just wouldn’t become tender, they were probably too old. Once you have them home, store them in an airtight container in a cool dark place.

Soaking dried beans reduces the cooking time and helps the beans hold their shape better during cooking. Although soaking isn’t necessary, the shortened cooking time cuts energy use, which is a good enough reason to soak. Spread the beans on a large baking sheet, and sort through them to remove stones or broken beans. Transfer the beans to a bowl and add enough cold water to cover by an inch or two. Let stand for 2 hours; longer will shrivel the beans. Drain before using.

For a quicker soaking method, place the sorted beans in a large saucepan, add cold water to cover, and bring to a full boil. Immediately remove from the heat and cover. Let stand for 1 hour, and then drain before using.

Cooks are divided over when to salt a pot of cooking beans. Some people believe that salting toughens the beans and thus lengthens their cooking time. Others believe that if beans are salted toward the end of cooking, the flavor is dull. So, in the interest of proper seasoning, go ahead and add a reasonable amount of salt at the beginning of cooking (about 1/2 teaspoon per cup of dried beans), as the add cooking time is minimal.

www.tinynewyorkkitchen.com

“Work With What You Got!”

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

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