I plan on making my first batch of fried chicken this weekend, and I've spent a couple of days thinking about how to proceed. I've been looking a few recipes, but two have really stood out-Thomas Keller's Fried Chicken and Alton Brown's.
I've been torn between brining in seasoned water vs. marinating in seasoned buttermilk. And while I saw the Edna Lewis post on this site about first brining and then tossing the chicken in buttermilk, I kind of want to simplify the process.
My Plan: Start with Thomas Keller's brine recipe, adjust the ingredients for just one 3 1/2 lb chicken and then use buttermilk instead of water for the brine.
Then, except for the double dredge and seasoning in Keller's recipe, I would proceed with Alton's cooking method: season the chicken before I dredge in flour (so the spices don't burn) use vegetable shortening (this apparently give the nicest crust, according to Alton) and, instead of paper towels, draining on cooling racks.
I just wondered if it'd be all right to boil the buttermilk and brining ingredients according to Keller's recipe. Would the buttermilk curdle? Would the lemon juice and peel that the recipe calls for make it curdle? I've read about flavoring buttermilk for a marinade, but never actually boiling it and then doing a full on brine. I only worry that something in this method of mine might make my finished prodct really sour and funky.
Also, in the TV episode that Alton does for his recipe, he mentions that letting the chicken sit too long after dredging is a bad thing (it becomes gluey)...but Keller says the chicken should rest for 1-2 hours.I wondered how you all feel about this. Do you think a double dredge, a long resting period and then Alton's cooking method would leave me with a thick doughy crust?
Thanks so much.
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I'm making a stuffing recipe that has you toast the bread prior to making the stuffing. Traditionally, I've only seen bread dried overnight and then used for the dish.
Aside from eliminating those 12 or so hours of prep work (which isn't that big of a deal for me)what is the added benefit to toasting the bread? Does it add an all important flavor component that I've been missing? Additionally, if toasting is the way to go...why have my parents been drying their bread over night all these years? Does it help dry the cubes better, so the stuffing doesn't become complete mush?
I'm clearly over-thinking the one dish I have to make for this holiday. :)
Since moving away from my parent's home a couple of years ago, I've missed the comforting appeal and smells of my Dad's weekly crockpot meals. And over the past few weeks I've decided that my culinary life is empty until I get my hands on my own slow-cooker.
i went on Amazon and saw a few models, but complaints ranged from "the knobs keep breaking" to "cooks too hot".
I wondered if any of you could recommend a decent crockpot that doesn't really exceed the $50 range, is 5 quarts or less and will provide some consistently well-cooked and delicious food.
Availability on Amazon.com is a plus because I have a prime account and get free shipping :)
Oh and if you have any recipes that would be awesome to start of with, please let me know. Aside from my Dad's Swedish Meatballs, wine/cream of mushroom roast, and Alton Brown's crockpot chili, I don't have a lot of recipes stockpiled.
Okay, so maybe it's not that BIG a crisis but I need some assistance in putting together a killer dish of dressing.
It's my first Thanksgiving away from my family because I'm going to be spending it with my OH and his parents. Somehow I landed the job of making a more "exotic" dressing to go with his mother's traditional bread mix with mire poix and chicken broth. While I'm not going too far off the beaten path (I don't want a big lonely pile of wildly flavored dressing left over) I am trying two combine two recipes to maximize flavor potential. I just don't know if I'm going too far with it.
I have the seriouseats cornbread dressing with bacon and pecan which I love for the mixture of bread, bacon and nuts...and again, the bacon. But I wanted more, so I thought it'd be good to try and modify it using a recipe from epicurious: sausage cranberry and pecan stuffing.
Now the big issue is how all these flavors (Cornbread, regular bread, sage, thyme, cranberries, apples, sausage, bacon, pecans) go together? I think that they'd be amazing and tasty, but the bacon might be the odd man out. Should I omit it? If I keep it should I use hickory, maple, applewood smoked? Regular? Is this whole endeavor just too much in terms of ingredients?
I already drove my OH crazy by asking if we could try it out this weekend. I don't think he fully appreciates the importance of stuffing (He thinks I'm barbaric for advocating in-the-bird-cooking process) so I would love if I could get some advice. Thanks!
Next Monday I'm making Clam Chowder for my boyfriend, who has a highly-placed and idyllic childhood memory of creamy chowder with sweet bursts of corn and salty clams.
I am desperate for some really good recipes.
Please note: I am a college student living in Ohio...fresh clams are not going to be an option. And if I can't get fresh corn, should assume that frozen is acceptable...or should I just toss the ingredient?
Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Also, I'm think about whipping up Mark Bittman's faster version of no-knead bread to go along with it. Is the effort worth it? Or should I just get a bag of oyster crackers?
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