Pasta Noodles In Skills
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Quinoa for Breakfast! 5 Sweet & Savory Ideas with Quinoa
We just can’t seem to get enough quinoa in our house. Why, we’ve even started sneaking it into our breakfasts! Sound weird? Some of these breakfast ideas might change your mind.Quinoa is really a natural fit for breakfast. Its nutty, slightly sweet flavor can go savory or sweet, and the texture of the grain lends itself to porridges and baked goods alike. If you branch out into quinoa flour, there are even more possibilities.
Sep 19, 2011
Not a Fan of Whole Wheat? Try Spelt Flour!
Whole wheat can be a tough sell. Sure, it’s super healthy and very good for us, just like our moms always said. But it can also weigh down baked goods and give them that distinctive bitter wheat flavor. Now, spelt? Spelt is the best of both worlds.As you can probably guess, spelt flour is ground from the spelt grain (which is also delicious in its own right).
Aug 17, 2011
Is My Frozen Baked Ziti Still Safe to Cook and Eat?
Q: I prepared an extra pan of baked ziti on Christmas Day 2010. I did not need to use it, so I covered it in foil, and put it in the freezer where it still remains. The tray of baked ziti has cooked pasta, cooked tomato meat sauce with sausage, meatballs, and pork chops, and fresh ricotta and mozzarella cheese, as well as grated locatelli romano.I am concerned about the safety of defrosting and baking this dish, as it was prepared over four months ago.
May 12, 2011
Dinner Tip: “Salt the Pot, Not the Pasta”
Even the most generic dried pasta can be turned into a tasty meal if it’s salted properly. One of the best pieces of advice I was taught in culinary school was, “Salt the pot, not the pasta.” Confused? Here’s what that clever little phrase means.The idea is to salt the water in the cooking pot just as it comes to a boil. It dissolves into the water and then pasta absorbs the salt along with the water as it cooks. You’re salting from the inside out.
Apr 18, 2011
Make-Ahead Lunch Tip: Quickly Cool Rice & Beans on a Baking Sheet
I don’t know about you, but my evenings often involve a last-minute scramble to get the next day’s lunches prepped and portioned before bedtime. The last thing I want to do is wait around for a pot of rice or a batch of beans to cool down. That’s when I pull out my baking sheet. Grains, beans, and legumes left in the pot can take a long time to cool to room temperature. Both the pot and whatever is inside it tend to hold that heat in rather than letting it go.
Apr 11, 2011
Simple, Cheap, and Vegan, Too? Poor Man’s Parmesan
We wish we’d discovered this one back during Vegan Week! The Italians might call this topping “poor man’s parmesan,” but toasting bread crumbs in olive oil until they’re golden and crispy sounds pretty rich to us. Who knows? We might ditch the parmesan altogether.We’re not sure that poor man’s parmesan was ever intended to actually simulate cheese or convince your taste buds that it actually is cheese.
Feb 3, 2011
The Best Shape? Wagon Wheel Mac n’ Cheese
The other night, I was laid up with a bad kitchen injury and a dear friend offered to make me dinner. Little did I know that she’d inspire not only a cheese column but also the future of my mac n’ cheese making.My friend’s mac n’ cheese is actually her signature dish, so her skills are already pretty solid. A key element, of course, is high-quality cheese, of which she has a range of trusted picks.
Nov 10, 2010
How To Make Pasta Like a Pro
It’s Italian Week here at The Kitchn, so we’re pumping you full of Italian recipes and other inspiration to make you feel like a real Italian cook. Of course, that means pasta. Maybe you’ve been rolling your own for some time, but have you experimented with shapes? I got turned on to the hand-crank pasta machine years ago, but it was only recently that I figured out how to make some of the fancy-pants shapes like rigatoni and bucatini from scratch.
Sep 9, 2010
Make Great Fresh Pasta at Home: Tips From My Italian Mother-in-Law
We’ve talked a lot about homemade pasta here on The Kitchn, but I had never made homemade pasta noodles myself. Well, that has changed, and now I’m wondering: why did I wait so long? I did have one secret weapon, though: my Italian mother-in-law. To see what I learned from her about homemade pasta, read on! When my husband and I were married, we received a wedding gift certificate to a major cookware shop, and I wanted to use it on something we’d both enjoy.
Sep 8, 2010
Pantry Staples: Pearl Barley
I get a little panicky if I realize I’m low on barley. I can’t ever seem to get enough of its chewy texture or nutty-sweet flavor, and I depend it for rounding out quick weeknight meals. I probably eat more barley these days than rice! It’s definitely a good one to have in the pantry.Pearl, or pearled, barley has the outer hull and some of the outer bran removed. This gives it a more uniform shape and it’s signature polished, pearly appearance.
Sep 2, 2010
Quick Tip: Thicken Sauces with Pasta Cooking Water
It feels counter-intuitive to add water to a sauce in order to thicken it, but this trick works! As any Italian home cook will tell you, just a little starchy cooking water gives the sauce extra body and an almost creamy mouthfeel. Have you ever tried this?All we do is dip out about a half a cup of the cooking water just before draining the pasta. It will look cloudy and yellowish from the starch. Stir this into your simmering sauce a few tablespoons at a time.
Jul 28, 2010
Baking Tip: Soak Whole Grain Flours Overnight
We’ve been doing a lot of baking with whole grains recently, and we see one technique pop up again and again. This is the idea of soaking the grains overnight before using them in the recipe. When it came up again in the comment thread for our Homemade Soba Noodles, we thought it was high time to learn more.
Jun 14, 2010
What’s the Best Way To Reheat Cream-Based Pasta Sauces?
Q: What is the best way to reheat cream-based leftovers like fettucine alfredo? My attempts for reheating dishes like these have resulted in oily, separated messes.I have the Barefoot Contessa’s lemon fusilli with arugula leftovers waiting for me in my fridge. Is there any hope?Sent by CarolynEditor: Carolyn, that recipe looks delicious!
Mar 30, 2010
How Should I Cook Really Big Pasta?
Q: I am seeing more and more very large dried specialty pastas — ones that are sometimes about two feet long! They look beautiful and I would love to try them at some point but does anyone know how to cook them?I know that angel hair pasta sits out of the water for 30 seconds and then it softens enough to get pushed into the water, but these look daunting! I’m sure there is a way to cook them without boiling?
Feb 12, 2010
Seeking Suggestions: Ways to Use Up Leftover Tortillas?
We made a big batch of enchiladas over the weekend, but somehow we still have about a dozen corn tortillas leftover. Have any suggestions for what to do with them?At this point, we’re thinking of freezing them until the next time we get a craving for Mexican food. You can freeze tortillas separated by wax paper so that it’s easy to take out only the number needed, and we’ve heard that they re-heat well just in a dry skillet.
Jan 11, 2010
Word of Mouth: Pumpernickel
Pumpernickel, noun – An incredibly dense and strongly flavored dark bread made with a blend of coarse and fine rye flour originating in Germany.We love the heartiness and deep, almost bitter flavor of pumpernickel bread, especially with a little sharp cheese melted over the top! Making an authentic loaf of pumpernickel is one of our winter goals, plus we think it would look lovely on our Thanksgiving table!Do you like pumpernickel bread? Ever made it yourself?
Nov 11, 2009
Kitty’s Bocconcino and Sausage Pasta Quick Weeknight Meals Recipe Contest 2009
Recipe: Bocconcino and Sausage PastaHow long does it take? 20-25 minutesCategory: OmnivoreName: KittyWhy is it a favorite meal? This dish always comforts me. Most of the ingredients are almost always either in my pantry or fridge. I just have to cruise by the store for sausage and bocconcino. The flavors are distinct and the cinnamon adds great depth to the dish.
Sep 27, 2009
Andrea’s Spaghetti with White Clam Sauce Quick Weeknight Meals Recipe Contest 2009
Recipe: Spaghetti with White Clam SauceHow long does it take? 30 minutesCategory: OmnivoreName: AndreaWhy is it a favorite meal? This meal is healthy, takes under 30 minutes to make, and is most importantly, tasty and satisfying. I always keep these ingredients, sans fresh clams, stocked in my cupboard and refrigerator for a quick weeknight meal or impromptu dinner party.
Sep 23, 2009
Learning To Love Wheat Bran
Confession: we’re trying valiantly to overcome an aversion to wheat bran. Thanks to one-too-many encounters with dense tasteless homemade bran muffins in our younger years, this is definitely an uphill battle (sorry, Mom!).But we’re intrepid cooks and willing to be convinced! How do you use wheat bran in your cooking?Wheat bran comes from the dense, outer hull of the wheat grain and is a by-product of making wheat flour.
Sep 22, 2009
Ingredient Spotlight: Acorn Noodles
I was at my boyfriend’s mother’s house the other day when she eagerly showed us a huge, heavy box of noodles she had purchased at her Korean church. These special noodles resembled buckwheat soba, but they contained an unusual ingredient – acorns!Korean acorn noodles, or dotori guksu, are made from a mixture of acorn flour, buckwheat or wheat flour, and salt. The acorn flour is ground from red or white acorns, which have been eaten in Korea since Neolithic times.
Sep 15, 2009
Heather’s Ribbons with Eggplant, Tomato & Blue Cheese Quick Weeknight Meals Recipe Contest 2009
Name: HeatherRecipe: Little Ribbons with Eggplant, Tomato and Blue CheeseHow long does it take? 30 minutesWhy is it a favorite meal? It’s a terrific way to use some of your late summer bounty! Simple, inexpensive, satisfying and ridiculously delicious!Little Ribbons with Eggplant, Tomato and Blue Cheese[serves 2]1/2 large eggplant, cut into 3/4?
Sep 11, 2009
Weekend Project: Make Gnocchi
What Are Gnocchi? While there are actually several different kinds of gnocchi (and we talked about some of them a few weeks ago), today we’ll just focus on potato gnocchi. This is a half-pasta, half-dumpling that hails from the northern part of Italy. As you can probably guess from the name, they’re made from cooked potatoes that get mashed, mixed with egg and flour, and kneaded into a dough.
Jul 10, 2009
Good Question: What is Polenta?
Susan is looking for some clarification on types of cornmeal. Can we help her out?I have a burning question! What is the difference between corn meal and polenta? Can I use regular corn meal (the stuff I use to make corn bread) to make polenta? Or do I have to track down a box that is specifically labeled “polenta”? And for the trifecta, what is masa harina? Could I use that to make polenta, or just tortillas?Susan, this is a great question and a tough one to answer.
Jun 25, 2009
What’s the Difference? Gnocchi di Patate, Gnocchi alla Romana, and Gnocchi Parisienne
When we think of gnocchi, our mind jumps straight to those soft little potato dumplings served in a lot of Italian cooking. But did you know there are actually several different kinds of gnocchi, each one very different from the next?There are three main kinds of gnocchi that we see called for in recipes and on restaurant menus:Gnocchi di Patate – This type of gnocchi is featured in a lot of Northern Italian cuisine and is probably what most of us actually know as gnocchi.
Jun 23, 2009
Tip: Boil Your Vegetables with Your Pasta
Last night we made a very simple, quick dinner—spaghetti, broccoli, and tomato sauce—and it was even easier because we put everything that needed to boil in the same big pot. It takes a little finesse with the timing, but it streamlines the process and eliminates another dirty pan. Boiling your vegetables with your pasta isn’t going to give you layers of different flavors and textures, like adding roasted vegetables would.
Jun 23, 2009
Cooking By Feel: Baked Pastas
In this week’s Cure assignment, Cure-takers are planning a menu. All along I’ve been encouraging people to cook by feel a little more and use formal recipes a little less, so I hope these menus involve some cooking by feel. The way this is done is by arming oneself with skills, but you also need ideas. Here’s a great idea for making pasta: bake it. Baked pasta doesn’t need to conjure up memories of school cafeteria baked ziti.
May 14, 2009
What’s the Difference? Flour, Cornstarch, Potato Starch, and Arrowroot
Last week, we talked about how starches are used to thicken sauces, puddings, pie fillings, and soups like the one above. This week, we’ll check out the different kinds of starches that get used in cooking and why you might choose to use one over the other…Starches can vary widely in terms of how quickly they thicken, how much they thicken, the quality of the thickening, and their flavor after thickening.
May 12, 2009
What’s the Difference? Light Rye, Dark Rye, Pumpernickel, and Marbled
As bread bakers, the differences between these four breads has been a real source of confusion for us. They often seem to be used interchangeably in restaurants, bakeries, and even some cookbooks. It’s quite distressing to expect one kind of bread and wind up with something completely different, we think! So is there a difference?We would argue that, yes, there is definitely a difference. Or at least there should be!
May 7, 2009
How To Dry Pasta Without a Rack
When I learned how to make fresh pasta (thanks to my Italian mother-in-law) it was so easy that I was definitely encouraged to try it again soon! But we did run into one little snag near the end: my mother-in-law asked if we had a drying rack. Well, no.Pasta has to be quickly laid out or hung to dry as soon as it comes through the machine or as it’s rolled and cut. The thin noodles will dry quickly so you want them in the right shape for that.
Mar 10, 2009
What Makes Bread So Special? Peter Reinhart’s Speech from the Taste3 Conference
If you’ve spent even a little time poking around the bread baking world, you have likely heard the name Peter Reinhart. As an instructor at Johnson and Wales and the author of several books on bread baking, he has built a career out of his love for bread!Our fellow Kitchn writer Dana recently sent us a link to Reinhart’s talk on “What Makes Bread So Special?” from the Taste3 Conference last July. This talk sums up everything we love about both Reinhart and baking bread!
Mar 10, 2009
Warm Breakfast: Who Still Eats Cream of Wheat?
Somewhere along the road to adulthood, Cream of Wheat got pushed aside for steel-cut oatmeal, tricked-out granola, or other fancy things in a bowl. But there are times (like a snowy morning in March) when a bowl of soft, sweet mush is really all we want.Cream of Wheat is essentially a bowl of flour. Appetizing, right? It was created in 1893 at a flour mill in North Dakota, when one of the millers made a breakfast porridge from some of the coarsely crushed wheat.
Mar 3, 2009
Tip from Fine Cooking: Make Stock in a Pasta Strainer
One of our favorite sections of Fine Cooking is near the front of the magazine, where they highlight cooking tips sent in by readers. We know how smart all of you out there are, so it’s no surprise to us that some of the best ideas come from other home cooks. This is a good one for winter. Straining a heavy pot full of chicken bones and chunks of vegetables is always a dicey adventure for us.
Jan 13, 2009
What’s the Difference? Blue Corn Meal vs. Harinilla
Thanks for all the excellent blue cornmeal recipe suggestions, everyone! We think we’ll save it for something fun for the Fourth of July–stay tuned…As we were reading over the tortilla recipe on our bag of cornmeal, we noticed that the recipe called the flour “harinilla.”At first, we assumed that this was a Spanish term for blue cornmeal, but when we were looking up recipes, we learned that there’s actually a significant difference!
Jun 18, 2008
What Should We Make With This Blue Cornmeal?
A friend just got back from a trip to Arizona and brought us a pound of this blue cornmeal. We love its gritty texture and earthy smell, and we can’t wait to cook with it!The package comes with a tortilla recipe, but we’re wondering what other possibilities are out there. Any ideas?Tamales were our first thought, though we’re not sure if the cornmeal is ground fine enough. We might try running a cup through our food processor to see if we can get a finer grind.
Jun 16, 2008
Look! Name that Pasta
Think you know your fusilli from your gemelli? Can you tell the difference between stellete and pastina? Looking for a ten-minute brain diversion, we stumbled upon this fun little quiz.AOL’s pasta shape identification quiz is harder than it looks. We were quite pleased to even get 19 out of 24, and that was with one or two lucky guesses. But even if you don’t do very well, it’s awesome to be reminded of all these shapes and textures of pasta.
Apr 3, 2008
Good Question: Who Invented Penne alla Vodka?
Dear Kitcheners,Paula Franzese (a lecturer with a company that gets future lawyers ready to sit for the bar exam), claimed in a lecture that her father invented Penne alla Vodka while working as a chef in an NYC restaurant in the 1970s. Could this be true? Does anyone know who invented the dish? When? Where?thanks, Sarah (photo: accompanies a Penne alla Vodka recipe at Williams-Sonoma.
Jul 28, 2006