Monday, August 24, 2015

Hint: Keeping French bread fresh and [almost] ready to serve

Crusty French loaves such as baguettes add substantial flavor and nourishment to a meal but rapidly go stale. Freezing the whole loaf will preserve much of its freshness but is slow to defrost, which delays its use. A useful workaround is to divide the loaf into serving-size pieces (2 to 4 ounces), return them to plastic bag it was sold in – if suitable, and freeze. If the bag is perforated or made from paper, use a new plastic freezer bag instead. When it's time for a yeasty, crusty side to soup, salad, or spread, just take one and freeze the rest. Defrosts in less than 30 seconds in the µwave. Don't forget to mist and cover before microwaving bread.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Hint: Grating Hard Cheese

Grating a hard cheese such as Parmesan or gruyere for a quiche or similar dish that calls for a goodly amount of cheese can be tiring. To make the task less fatiguing, rotate the box grater so that it lies flat on the work surface with the handle facing you. Grip the handle with one hand and push the cheese away from you and down on the grater. Thus, instead of having to press the block of cheese firmly sideways against the grater, force is applied downwards and away, a much easier task, since it employs more and larger muscles.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Banana in Sweet and Sour Raspberry Cream

Developed August, 2015, as a departure from banana in light cream. Versatile, a breakfast, brunch, a rich snack, or dessert dish.
1 ripe banana, sliced attractively
2 T (30 g) sour cream
2 T (30 g) half-and-half or light cream
1/2 t (3 g) sugar
1 T (15 g) raspberry sauce
Add the dairy products and sugar to a serving bowl and mix well. Add the sliced banana and gently combine. Serve with a topping of fruit sauce. Mix before eating. Variation: Substitute strawberries or blueberries as the fruit and use a fruit sauce made from those alternate fruits.