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Kitchen Tips You Can Use

A collection of tips and tricks from the editors and contributors of Seattle DINING!

Justifying the cost of organic grass-fed beef

Trying to get some health aspects from meat into your diet beyond protein? That's not easy to do when you're dining out. But you can really amp up the experience at home thanks to markets like PCC that stock organic grass-fed beef. Now, understand - it's not cheap, but in comparison to what you pay for beef tenderloin at better restaurants, it's still cheaper to eat at home and have better beef.

Add a little vinegar to your French toast

Here's something you won't find when you go out to eat. But if you like making breakfast at home, give it a try. The next time you make French toast add a teaspoon of fruit-infused balsamic vinegar to the egg mix. Sounds crazy - I know, but the results on the taste buds are most tantalizing and I'll guess you'll enjoy it again and again. Several stores offer fruit infused balsamics. One of our favorites is the Queen Anne Olive Oil Company at the top of QA.

Real maple syrup, real savings

If the price of real maple syrup has you running for the fake stuff, you needn't do that so fast. Instead of dumping syrup all over your pancakes or French toast, put two tablespoons into a ramekin and dip your sliced pieces into it before each bite. Your tongue will love getting the full maple burst and you'll be surprised at how much less you use.

Get a rice cooker

Sure, we all know how to put some rice in a pot and cook it. But nothing is better and easier to use for rice than a good rice cooker. Just add the rice, water, oil, and spices and let it take care of itself! Spend a little more than the el cheapo versions for the best results. Most double as steamers for veggies and otherwise.

 

 

 Try an alternative cooking method

Using an alternative cooking method can result in healthier and better tasting food. Consider a few options - 1) Making fried chicken? How about baking it instead? 2) Frying a pork chop? You could bake that too or put it on the barbeque. Making a gumbo or jambalaya? Easy to do in a pot or crockpot, but how about tweaking the recipe a tad and cooking it in a paella pan?

Salt and pepper at the end

Some recipes call for salt and pepper to be used at the front end of the cooking process. Is that necessary? Next time you come across this, ask yourself if it might be better to add it closer to the end of the process, when so many other spices get added.

Oil your meat

Before placing poultry, fish or red meat on the barbeque, use a silicon brush and give it a light coating of extra light olive oil. Note we said light, not virgin. Extra light olive oil won't leave an olive oil-like flavor on the protein, but it will help seal in the juices and has a much higher smoke point so it won't become carcinogenic the way regular olive oil can at medium heat.

Do you know if you're diabetic or will be soon?

If you don't think you're diabetic, consider getting an HbA1c blood test the next time you're with your doctor. Detecting a pre-diabetes condition ahead of time means you can work backward using a healthy diet to avoid becoming diabetic. Finding out too late can mean no turning back. The test is relatively inexpensive and saves you money and trouble later if pre-diabetes is confirmed.

Take a cooking class

Do you find yourself getting a tad bored with what you've been making at home? A cooking class can be very inspirational and might be just what you need to send you down a path of new ideas. In Seattle there are many starting with Tom Douglas' Hot Stove Society, PCC's on-site classes and special events like our own Cooking with Class.

Class at Sizzleworks

July 2015


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