2Standardized recipes...Standardized recipes provide a list and amounts of ingredients, yield, equipment needed, cooking time, cooking temperature, and sometimes the calorie count per serving. These recipes ensure the same result each time it is made. The opposite of a standardized recipe is an ‘original’ recipe.
3Customary measuring units... The most commonly used system of measuring in the United States is based on standard or ‘customary’ units of measurement, which would include ‘volume’ measures such as ounces, teaspoons, tablespoons, cups, pints, and gallons.Measuring spoon sets, used for liquid and dry ingredients, usually include 1 tablespoon, 1 teaspoon, ½ teaspoon, and ¼ teaspoon.Measuring cup sets, used for dry ingredients and solid fats, usually include 1 cup, ½ cup, 1/3 cup, and ¼ cup. Some sets may include a 2/3 and a ¾ cup measure.1 cup, 2 cup, and 1 quart liquid cup measures are transparent and have space above the top measurement line. You can carry a full cup without spilling.
4Metric measuring units... Metric units of measurement are based on multiples of ten, and include milligrams, grams, kilograms, milliliters, and liters. As long as you have the correct measuring equipment, it’s not necessary to convert measurements from one system to another.1 cup All Purpose Flour: 4 3/8 oz or 125 gAny measurement by weight, whether using customary or metric units, is more accurate than using measuring cups or spoons.
5How to measure...Lightly spoon dry ingredients into the measuring cup, mounding the top. DO NOT SHAKE DOWN OR PACK.Using the flat side of a knife or a straight-edge spatula, level the ingredients.Since there is some degree of error with each measurement, measure the fewest number of times possible.Brown sugar is the ONLY dry ingredient that is packed into the measuring cup. Pack the sugar, level the top, and invert. If packed correctly, the damp sugar should maintain the shape of the measuring unit.
6How to measure...Pack fats into a dry measuring cup, level the top, and remove with a rubber spatula, OR use a water-displacement method to measure. Example: measure ½ cup of water into a liquid measuring cup; add fat until the water level reaches the 1 cup mark; you have just measured ½ cup of fat.When using a scale to measure, place the bowl on the scale first, reset the scale to zero, and then measure in the ingredients.To measure liquids, set the cup measure in a level surface. Pour in the liquid to the right line and read it at eye-level. Food ingredients do not cause eye damage if splashed into the eyes.
7Abbreviations...The use of abbreviations saves time and space when writing menus and cookbooks.Tablespoon = T. or tbsp.Teaspoon = tsp., t., ts.Cup = cu., c.Pint = pt.Quart = qt.Gallon = gal.Ounce = oz.Pound = lb. or #Calories = cal.Package = pkg.Large = lge.Medium = med.Small = sm.
8Measuring Equivalents... 1 pinch = (what you can hold between your thumb and your forefinger), less than 1/8th teaspoon, a dash, a few grains3 teaspoons = 1 tablespoon16 tablespoons = 1 cup2 cups = 1 pint2 pints = 1 quart4 quarts = 1 gallon8 fluid ounces = 1 cup16 ounces = 1 pound
9Changing yield... 2 sticks margarine 1 ½ cup granulated sugar Suppose you have a standardized recipe for chocolate chip cookies that yields 6 dozen cookies, but you only want to make 3 dozen cookies. You can often adjust ingredient amounts to change the yield. Read amounts of ingredients carefully, as some recipes are not well-suited for this.2 sticks margarine1 ½ cup granulated sugar2 eggs, beaten in one at a time½ tsp. vanilla2 cups all-purpose flour¼ teaspoon salt2 teaspoons baking powder12 oz. chocolate chips1 cup margarine1 3/4 cup granulated sugar1 egg1 tsp. vanilla2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour1/2 teaspoon salt1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder2 cups chocolate chipsCut each of these recipe ingredients in half to decrease the yield. Which of these recipes works best for this?
10Mise en place...Mise en place (meez ahn PLAHS) is a French term that means “to put in place”. It refers to any work you do in getting ready to cook, before you actually start cooking.Mise en place includes the assembling, washing, measuring, cutting, and preparing ingredients, getting out equipment, preheating the oven, separating the eggs, boiling the water, lining the pan with paper, etc.The basic elements of mise en place include knife cuts, herbs, spices, and basic preparations. It includes any steps in food preparation that can be done ‘in advance’, without losing quality.
11Mise en place steps that include knife skills are an important part of pre-preparation. Use a ‘claw grip’, with fingertips curled back and under, to hold food when slicing.Choosing the correct knife for each task is important to the success of the effort. The hand holding the food item is called the ‘guiding hand’.When peeling a vegetable or fruit with a paring knife, cut straight toward your thumb.
12Knife skills...Cut batonnet pieces crosswise to dice… this is called brunoise (broon-WAHZ)A batonnet (ba-tun-AY) cut is ¼ x ¼ x ¼ x 2 ½”Julienne (jew-lee-EN) cuts are 1/8 x 1/8 x 2 ½”Cut julienne pieces crosswise to minceThe term ‘chop’ usually indicates a simple dice in the size of your choice.
13Herbs and spices...Seasoning is very important in food preparation. ‘Mirepoix’ (meer-PWAH) is a combination of onion, carrots, and celery, either raw, roasted or sautéed with butter. It is the flavor base for a wide number of dishes, such as stocks, soups, stew, and sauces.Herbs (URBS) are the leaves, stems, or flowers of an aromatic plant, available fresh or dried. Crumble or grind dry herbs before adding them to your dish to release their flavor. When using fresh herbs, you must use 2–3 times the amount called for in the recipe, as the dry herbs have a stronger flavor. Basil, bay leaves, chives, cilantro, dill, oregano, and sage are examples.
14Spices are the bark, roots, seeds, buds, or berries of an aromatic plant, purchased whole or ground in dry form.Whole spices should be added early during the cooking process to release their flavors. Cut or ground spices should be added later in the cooking process.Each herb or spice has its own distinctive flavor. Using a combination of herbs and spices can reduce the amount of salt needed for flavor.Heat, light, and air speed the loss of flavor and color from herbs and spices. Store carefully.Herbs and spices...Examples of common spices are caraway, cayenne, chile pepper, cinnamon, cloves, curry, ginger, nutmeg, paprika, peppercorns, and sesame seeds.
15Dry heat cooking without fat... Marinating is one way of adding flavor to dry-heat cooking methods. You literally soak the meat in a seasoned liquid to impart flavor; it may tenderize some meats.Barding also adds flavor to dry heat methods. It is a technique that involves wrapping a very lean food with a piece of fat during cooking, to impart flavor and juiciness. Shown here is a filet of beef wrapped in bacon… commonly called filet mignon.To roast, place food on a rack in the pan, so it doesn’t sit in its own juice. No lid.Cook slowly in the middle of the oven to achieve a golden brown exterior and moist, tender inside.
16Dry heat cooking without fat... Grilling is often accomplished on a piece of outdoor cooking equipment. The food is placed directly over a heat source, such as gas flames or charcoals. The crosshatch marks on the food’s surface are visually appealing. The food is turned halfway through the cooking process.The food is highly flavored on the outside, somewhat smoky, depending on the type of heat source (i.e. burning hickory or mesquite woods)Broiling is done on one of the top racks of the oven, directly under the coils or flame. The food is turned halfway through the baking time. The oven door is left ajar, so the hot air can escape. This is a rapid cooking method.
17Dry heat cooking without fat... Barbecuing is the same as grilling, only during the cooking process the food is ‘basted’ with a seasoned sauce. To baste the food, you brush on a sauce or drippings or other liquid to keep the food moist.Baking is cooking food in an oven, surrounded by dry, hot air. No liquid is added to the food; no lid traps the steam that escapes from the food. Food placed too high or too low in the oven browns on the top or bottom before the center is cooked. Food is normally placed on the center rack.
18Dry heat cooking without fat... Microwaving food is a dry heat method. You do NOT get the same results as a conventional or convection oven. The food is cooked with ‘waves’ of energy, which pass through the food. As they do, they create friction… and heat. The food cooks from the inside out. Foods that work best in the microwave have a somewhat higher moisture content. Foods cook in about ¼th the time as they would in a conventional oven.Foods must be placed in cookware that the micro-‘waves’ can pass through… such as glass, paper, plastic, etc. Microwaves cannot pass through metal, so it is not used for cookware, but IS used to line the appliance cooking compartment and to contain the microwaves.
19Dry heat cooking with fat... Sautéing (saw-TAY-ing) cooks food rapidly in a small amount of fat, releasing juices.When stir-frying, food is kept in constant motion over a large, hot surface.Foods cooked by pan frying are often coated first with flour, crumbs, or batter. The hot oil seals the natural juices inside, and leaves a crisp exterior. Only naturally tender food should be cooked by dry heat methods.Deep fat frying or French frying is similar to frying, only food is totally submerged in hot grease.
20Boiling and simmering are moist heat cooking methods. Boiling means to cook food in a liquid that has reached 212ºF. Rolling bubbles appear on the surface. Boiling is used for vegetables and starches, but toughens protein of meat, fish, and eggs. Rapid boiling breaks apart delicate foods.Simmering is similar to boiling, only temperatures are kept just below boiling. Only small bubbles break the surface. Simmering for long periods of time is effective in melding flavors, such as in the spaghetti sauce at the right.
21Steaming, like poaching and blanching, are gentle methods of cooking in liquid. Cooking foods in steam OVER, but not in boiling water, retains color, shape, and flavor.Moist heat cooking...Poaching is when food is allowed to sit and cook, partially- or fully-covered in very hot (but not boiling) liquid.Blanching foods are only boiled briefly, then immersed in ice water to halt the cooking process. This is called ‘shocking’. Blanching loosens skins of fruits or vegetables, so they can be peeled easily.
22Combining dry and moist heat... Braising combines dry and moist heat. First the meat is ‘seared’ or fried over high heat to seal in the juices. It is then transferred to the oven for slow cooking that softens the tougher, connective tissue.Some liquid is added to the pot during cooking.3 types of braising include:Daube (DAWB) is made with red meat and red wine.Estouffade (ess-too-FAHD) is a French term for the braising method or the dish.Pot roasting is a common American term for braising, and is the name of the meat, potatoes, carrots, and onion dish.
23Combining dry and moist heat... Stewing is similar to braising, but food is cut into bite-size pieces before searing and cooking. When stewing, food is covered in liquid while simmering. Types of stews include:Blanquette (blahn-KETT) is chicken, veal, or lamb with mushrooms and onions in a white sauce.Bouillabaise (BOO-yuh-base) is a Mediterranean fish stew.Fricassée is a white stew made with veal, poultry, or small game.Goulash is a beef, veal, or poultry dish seasoned with paprika and generally served with potatoes or dumplings.Ragout (ra-GOO) is a French term for stew that means ‘restores the appetite’.Matelote (ma-tuh-LOAT) is a fish stew made with eel.