Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Can't even boil water!

Water abundant yet scarce, common yet precious and vital yet destructive.
Basic skills require that boiling be a must do in the kitchen.
So lets review this basic skill.

Water fact sheet:

Boils at a 100 degrees C
Freezes at 0 degrees C
Anything in between is... well water
Boiling depends not on the water but on what is in the water.

Pasta water (Add oil, salt and bay leaves)
Better to bring it to a boil first then add the pasta.
do not boil the hell out of it, take the pasta out while it is still a little hard
but the shape of the pasta is flexible enough to bounce back when scooped up.
Save the pasta for later at this stage you can dip in same water boiling just before serving.
Water is a good heat conductor and infiltrates the pasta therefore it continues to cook after removed from the pot.

The incredible edible egg.
Boiled Soft or hard...
Eggs have a gas chamber inside letting escape small amounts of sulfur from the yolk (hence the egg smell).
You can prick a pin hole at either end of the egg and drop in the water.
Unlike pasta is better to drop the egg while the water is still cool. As it boils and the temperature raises the gas will escape the egg leaving a better tasting soft boil and a perfectly yellow non smelly hard boil. I use a thumb tack for that.
If you drop the egg into already boiling water the rapid cooking of the outer layer of Albumin (Egg White Protein) will harden before the rest and again trap the stinky gas in the remainder egg white. Never mind the fact that Murphy's law's apply...If you are going to drop an egg into boiling water chances are you will end up with a cracked leaky egg...(Aka Egg Drop Soup)
Water again becomes very useful as a dip in cold water before peeling the shell of the egg allows for shrinkage ( We guys know all about it) That shrinkage allows the layer of shell and membrane beneath it to separate allowing you to crack the egg top to spoon a soft boil or the whole shell to peel the hard boil ones. cant time your eggs...Well if it spins without wabbling (the egg that is not your head) then the center is solid...If it is still uncooked and semi liquid the egg will wabble as it spins since the center of gravity will move with the swiching soft center.

Water for tea:

One word (BREW)
Boil water and pour into a cup that alreday has the tea bag
(Tea Bag Hahaha Beavers and ButtHead)
A tea bag that becomes wet as it sits in the cup is less likely to trap air and float up.
Tea in a stariner...ughhhh fancy well let it steep
Tanins will overwhealm your flavors and release too many acids leaving the brew well like toilet bowl cleaner ready to strip your stomach lyning.

Weak herbal teas on the contrary should be boiled close to the time of serving. As steeping may not get enough goodness out of it. Highly volatile or aromatic herbal teas are better off steeping in bags inside your cup (Lemon verbena or Thai Lemon grass)

Sun tea brewed over time left on a window sill...Well hippy chicky do rose buds and hibiscus works better for this. Mild iced tea mixes as brisk, black tea and jasmine tea work best.

Water for soup...Easy....Dump ingredients, turn dial and let your inner Irish Maiden boil the shit out of the whole thing.
Potatoes, Cabbage, Sprouts and CauliFlower same boil until soft (tender soft not disintegrate soft)
Potatoes and root vegetables...until a fork can pierce them
Cabage..depending...By the way this is another stinker...boil the water with a little vinegar...it will take longer to boil but is well worth it.
Broccoli well just drop onto the already boiling water and take out as they turn bright green place in ice water inmediatly and the green should become even brighter.
Boiling Cauliflower...depending on the use: soft to use as ingredient and slightly harder as a side dish.


  1. Hi honey, we'll have to talk about those units. The F and the C? Or is your blood boiling? Well, you're from the south, so maybe it is!

  2. LOL..UPSSSS! Fixed it thank you honey.