Say it Ain’t So
Salads & First Bites
Legend has it that this tasty blend was created by accident. In 1937, Robert H. Cobb (er, Bob Cobb), owner of L.A. eatery The Brown Derby, was scrounging around for a nighttime meal when he came upon an avocado. He chopped it up and threw in some romaine, watercress, tomatoes, chicken, hard-boiled egg, cheese, some leftover bacon and tossed with the Derby’s famous French dressing. As the story goes, word spread of his delicious invention after he fed it to Hollywood promoter Sid Grauman, who fell in love at first bite. Soon it was added to the restaurant’s menu.
Two different Italian chefs are credited for creating this Parmesan cheese-laced favorite. Most historians point to Caesar Cardini, a San Diego-based cook who ran a restaurant just over the Mexican border in Tijuana to avoid the United States’ prohibition laws. Over a busy Fourth of July weekend in 1924, Cardini was running low on supplies, so he threw together a salad with the ingredients he could find in his kitchen: romaine lettuce, garlic, croutons, Parmesan cheese, boiled eggs, olive oil, and Worcestershire sauce.
Food historians trace the roots of this dish—a mix of julienned lettuce, meats, cheese and hard-boiled egg—to Salmagundi, a popular meat-and-veggie mix that originated in 17th century England. But they’re unclear on who created the first American Chef Salad. In his 1975 tome American Food: The Gastronomic Story, food historian Evan Jones speculates, “It may have been made first in the kitchen of the Ritz-Carlton where a recipe used by Louis Diat called for smoked ox tongues as one of the meats and watercress as the only green leaf.”
This quinoa salad is refreshing, crisp and delicious. It’s made simply with fresh cucumber, red bell pepper, red onion, chickpeas, fresh parsley and a garlicky olive oil and lemon dressing. The salad sort of reminds me of tabouleh, and herbed Lebanese salad with tomatoes and bulgur.
CRAB LOUIE SALAD
What’s certain about this so-called “King of Salads” (made with crab meat, avocado, tomatoes, and asparagus) is it debuted on the West Coast. Exactly when and where, however, is up for debate. Some say it was born at Seattle’s Olympic Club in 1904 when Metropolitan Opera Company tenor Enrico Caruso ordered the dish again and again until there was none left. But other theories abound. In her West Coast Cook Book, Helen Evans Brown asserts it was first served at San Francisco spot Solari’s in 1914. And representatives from The Davenport Hotel in Spokane, Washington insist it was their founder and owner, Louis Davenport, who invented the dish for the hotel’s restaurant.
Waldorf Astoria Hotel maître d’ Oscar Michel Tschirky is credited for preparing the apple, celery, walnut, and mayonnaise mix for the NYC spot’s pre-opening fête in March of 1893. Later dubbed “Oscar of the Waldorf,” he continued working at the swanky establishment for another 50 years.
Ranch Dressing or Coffee Creamer
Foods, like ranch dressing or coffee creamer, can contain titanium dioxide, which can also be found in paint, plastic, and sunscreen.
Bucatini, also known as perciatelli, is a thick spaghetti-like pasta with a hole running through the center. The name comes from Italian: buco, meaning “hole”, while bucato or its Neapolitan language variant perciato means “pierced”. Bucatini is common throughout Lazio, particularly Rome.
Cavatelli are small pasta shells from eggless semolina dough that look like miniature hot dog buns, commonly cooked with garlic and broccoli or broccoli rabe. A variant adds ricotta cheese to the dough mix.
Gemelli are a type of pasta. The name derives from the Italian word for “twins”. Gemelli are not twin tubes twisted around one another, as they may appear to be, but rather a single s-shaped strand twisted into a spiral.
Pappardelle are large, very broad, flat pasta noodles, similar to wide fettuccine, originating from the region of Tuscany. The fresh types are two to three centimetres wide and may have fluted edges, while dried egg pappardelle have straight sides.
Ravioli are a type of pasta comprising a filling enveloped in thin pasta dough. Usually served in broth or with a sauce, they originated as a traditional food in Italian cuisine. Ravioli are commonly square, though other forms are also used, including circular and semi-circular
Rigatoni are a form of tube-shaped pasta of varying lengths and diameters originating in Italy. They are larger than penne and ziti, and sometimes slightly curved, though not as curved as elbow macaroni
Gordon Ramsay Restaurants Pasta Recipes
Pasta Recipes from Gordon Ramsay Restaurants
Shell Fish – Crabs
There are several species of crab that are commercially important in the US: Total commercial landings of all crab species in the US over the past decade have ranged from 275 to 350 million pounds per year with an annual dockside value between $400 and $550 million. The most popular crabs are King and Snow crab caught in Alaska, Dungeness crab caught along the West coast and Alaska, and Blue crab caught along much of the Eastern seaboard and the Gulf of Mexico.
Specifically, the blue crab fishery is the largest crab fishery in the US. Dungeness crab is the second largest crab fishery followed by Dungeness crabs which are caught along much of the U.S. Pacific coast and a large portion of the catch is from Oregon and is the state’s most valuable single-species fishery. King and snow crabs are highly valued commercial species mainly caught in Alaska.
- Blue crab is the largest crab fishery in the US.
- Blue crab the mainly harvested in coastal bays and estuaries along much of the Atlantic coast and the Gulf of Mexico.
- Blue crabs are important to areas like the Chesapeake Bay because of their ecological, economical and historical value.
Snow (Tanner) Crabs
- Snow crabs are fished at ocean depths of 240 to 600 feet.
- Snow crabs can live up to 20 years.
- Snow crabs are only found in the Bering and Chukchi Seas in Alaska.
- Dungeness crabs can live over 8 years and can reach a size of 9 inches across the shell
- Dungeness crabs are named after a small fishing village on the Strait of Juan de Fuca in Washington State.
- Commercial crab pots are placed at depths of 30 to 600 feet and most of the harvest occurs from December through February.
- King crabs are mainly found in Bristol Bay and in the Aleutian Islands in Alaska.
- King crab is one of the most valuable seafood products harvested in the U.S.
- The largest king crab on record had a leg span of nearly 5-feet across.
Fish – Shrimp
There are numerous species of shrimp which can be collectively sold under the single term – shrimp. Occasionally they are sold as prawns, which is a term that refers to larger varieties that are more common in certain international markets.
There are a variety of different types and sources of shrimp available in U.S. markets.
Cold water shrimp are the smaller varieties harvested in ocean waters in the northwest and northeast regions of the US and Canada. Coldwater shrimp are only available previously cooked and peeled (shell removed).
Warm water shrimp are harvested and farmed in tropical and sub-tropical regions around the world. They are more commonly sold by reference to basic shell colors (white, brown and pink shrimp) and there are variations in taste, texture, size and costs .
Wild shrimp refers to either cold water or warm water varieties that are harvested from coastal ocean waters with traditional vessels. They are often preferred for traditional flavors and recipes. The harvesting of wild shrimp is regulated by management programs that set annual production limits. Less than 10% of the shrimp eaten in the United Sates comes from wild harvests.
Farmed shrimp refers to warm water varieties that are grown in open and closed pond systems supplemented with formulated feeds. Shrimp diets and pond waters can be controlled to influence production rates and sensory attributes of the shrimp. Over 90% of the shrimp eaten in the United States come from farmed sources grown in other countries around the world.
Domestic shrimp is a term used to refer to wild shrimp harvested about the coasts of the US.
Imported shrimp refers mainly to farm-raised shrimp from productive regions in China, Thailand and many other Asian nations, and the Gulf of Mexico and Pacific coasts of Central and South America.
Fish – Lobster
There are 2 distinct lobster fisheries in the US, the American lobster off the coast of New England and Eastern Canada, and the spiny lobster in the Florida Keys. In addition to U.S. lobster harvests, a large amount of northern lobsters are imported from Canada. The lobster’s habitat is rocky areas from just below the surface to depths of 2,300 feet – usually concentrated at depths of 130 feet. Lobsters molt as they age, and it is estimated the American lobster will molt over 20 times in 5 to 8 years before reaching the minimum size for commercial fishing.
The spiny lobster fishery lands approximately 4 to 6 million pounds annually. Most of the spiny lobster sold in the U.S. is imported. These lobsters can be found in dense vegetation as juveniles and eventually migrate to coral reefs as adults. Like American lobsters, the spiny lobsters will molt about 25 times in the first 5 to 7 years of life. The minimum size for commercial and recreational fisheries is 3 inches.
The U.S. exports most lobster mostly to Canada, followed by Italy, Spain and France. The U.S. and Canada are the major suppliers of lobster in the world.
- American lobster is also known as New England or Northern lobster.
- Lobsters are found in colder waters off of the New England coast
- The American lobster is one of the most valuable fisheries in the United States.
- The Northern lobsters’ lifespan is thought to exceed 50 years.
- The largest American lobster on record weighed 44 pounds.
- Spiny lobster is also known as Caribbean lobster.
- Spiny lobsters live in warm waters, and the main U.S fishery is in the Florida Keys.
- Frozen lobster tails in U.S. markets are usually spiny lobster.
- Spiny lobsters can grow to 3 feet or more.
Fish – Salmon
The term “salmon” refers to a variety of species that are all “anadromous” fish, which means they are born in fresh water rivers and streams, migrate to the ocean to mature and spend much of their adult life, and then return to the streams and rivers in which they were born to spawn (reproduce) and then die. 6 types of salmon are consumed in the United States including: Atlantic, Chinook, Chum, Coho, Pink, and Sockeye Salmon. Of these, five species (Chinook, Chum, Coho, Pink and Sockeye) are harvested from wild fisheries in the Pacific Ocean and one type, Atlantic salmon, is primarily farmed raised.
Salmon has been the third most frequently consumed seafood product in the U.S. Average consumption has consistently been around 2 pounds per person per year, surpassed only by shrimp and canned tuna. Two-thirds of the salmon consumed in the US is farmed and imported primarily from Norway, Chile and Canada. U.S. commercial landings of salmon were 1 billion pounds valued at $688 million—an increase of 447 million pounds (80%) and almost $268 million (64%) compared with 2016. Alaska accounted for nearly 98& of total landings; Washington, 2%; California, Oregon, and the Great Lakes accounted for less than 1% of the catch. Sockeye salmon landings were 292 million pounds valued at $324 million—an increase of over 4 million pounds (2%) and $74 million (more than 29%) compared with 2016. Chinook salmon landings decreased to 9 million pounds—down 3 million pounds (over 24%) from 2016. Pink salmon landings were 495 million pounds—an increase of 365 million (280%); chum salmon landings were 177 million—an increase of nearly 75.8 million (75%); and coho salmon increased to 35 million—an increase of nearly 5 million (16%) compared with 2016.
- The majority of salmon currently consumed in the U.S. is farm raised Atlantic salmon from Canada, Chile and Norway.
- Farmed Atlantic salmon is primarily sold as fresh or frozen dressed fish, fillets or steaks.
- Commercial fishing for wild Atlantic salmon is prohibited in the U.S. because wild population levels in the eastern U.S. are extremely low.
- Almost all the pink salmon harvested in the United States comes from Alaska fisheries with some lesser amounts landed in Washington, and Oregon.
- Pink salmon is often sold as a canned product.
- Sockeye salmon is caught by U.S. fishermen, mainly in Alaskan waters.
- Sockeye salmon is sold fresh, frozen and canned.
- Chum salmon are primarily harvested by U.S. fishermen in Alaska.
- Wild fish populations in Alaska are supported by the release of hatchery raised fish.
- Chum salmon are sold fresh, frozen and canned
- Most Coho salmon is caught in Alaskan waters, and some is imported from Canada and Chile.
- Most Coho salmon is sold fresh or frozen.
Chinook (King) Salmon
- Chinook salmon are commercially harvested in Alaska, Washington, Oregon and in small amounts off the California coast.
- Most Chinook salmon is sold fresh or frozen.
Fish – Scallops
Scallops are one of the most popular seafood items due to their unique appealing texture and succulent flavors. Scallops have been among the top ten seafood items consumed in the U.S. for decades, and Americans eat about one third pound of scallops per year.
There are several types of scallops harvested in North America including the sea scallop, bay scallop and calico scallop. Several types of wild and farm raised scallops are also imported from Japan, China and Europe.
Scallops are available as fresh refrigerated meats or frozen meats. Size categories refer to the size of the adductor muscle (scallop meats) which is the main edible portion of the scallop. Scallop size categories can be simply grouped as large, medium and small. There are no enforced grade designations for scallop size.
Scallop adductor muscle has a tendency to absorb water when removed from the shell. Likewise, the meats can lose moisture when thawed or stored in refrigeration for some time. For the larger varieties, buyers can specify a purchase for ‘dry’ or ‘wet’ scallops, which refers to prior processing procedures that can influence the moisture content in the scallop. Wet scallops may be treated during processing to retain moisture. Dry scallops are not treated.
Gordon Ramsay Restaurants – Fish Recipes
Fish Recipes from Gordon Ramsay Restaurants
Salmon is White and Pink
Farm-raised salmon is naturally white and then dyed pink. While wild salmon are naturally pink due to the large amount of shrimp in their diet, farm-raised salmon eat differently. In order to achieve that pleasing pink color, salmon farmers add carotenoids (plant pigments) to the fish feed to mimic the natural hue of wild salmon.
Raw Oysters Are Still Alive When You Eat Them
Chances are, raw oysters are still alive when you eat them. Oysters deteriorate so fast that chefs have to serve them very quickly — while they’re still alive, basically. Some varieties of the shellfish can survive out of the water for up to two weeks, which is why oysters are stored under particularly regulated condition. Once they die, they are no longer safe to eat.
If you have a plate of fresh oysters, you’re probably chewing on them while they are still alive. Luckily, oysters don’t have central nervous systems, so they can’t feel pain.
Most Wasabi is Actually Just Dyed Horseradish
If you have a habit of smearing spicy wasabi all over your California roll, just know that you are — in all likelihood — just eating dyed horseradish. About 99% of all wasabi sold in the United States is fake, and you’d have to go to a very high-end sushi restaurant in Japan to find the real stuff.
Wasabi costs $80 a pound, so it’s much more cost-effective for restaurants to just use an imitation instead.
Get to Know Your Chickens
- Broilers: Chickens 6 to 8 weeks old and weighing about 2 1/2 pounds
- Fryers: Chickens 6 to 8 weeks old and weighing 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 pounds
- Roasters: Chickens less than 8 months old and weighing 3 1/2 to 5 pounds
- Stewing Chickens: Chickens (usually hens) over 10 months old and weighing 5 to 7 pounds
- Capons: Castrated males that weigh 6 to 8 pounds
- Cock/Rooster: Male chickens over 10 months old weighing 6 to 8 pounds
Broilers, Fryers & Roasters
Broilers, fryers, and roasters can generally be used interchangeably based on how much meat you think you’ll need. They are young chickens raised only for their meat, so they are fine to use for any preparation from poaching to roasting. You may need to adjust cooking times or amounts of other ingredients (like stuffing) based on what the recipe called for and the size of your chicken.
A broiler-fryer comes to market after six to eight weeks and weighs 3 to 4 lb., according to the National Chicken Council. The name reflects the fact that the young and tender meat is best cooked with high heat, making it the ideal bird to cut up or butterfly for the grill, broiler, sauté pan, or frying pan. The tender, mild-tasting meat and relatively small parts make them a poor choice for a stew or a braise, where they would tend to dry out. Left whole, a broiler-fryer makes a fine roast chicken, although the yield is a bit less than a larger bird—a 4-pound chicken barely serves four, while a 7-pound roaster can serve eight.
A roaster or roasting chicken is older—three to five months— and weighs 5 to 7 lb., according to the National Chicken Council. A roaster has a thicker layer of fat, which helps baste the bird as it roasts. The meatier parts are also fine cut up for stews or braises. But a roaster isn’t as good for grilling, broiling, or frying since the larger, thicker pieces will overcook (or burn) on the outside before cooking through. Also, it’s slightly tougher, more flavorful meat benefits from the slower cooking of roasting, braising, and stewing.
Dry Chicken in the Fridge
This step sounds kind of contradictory. The goal is to have the inside of the chicken moist and juicy but we want that lovely caramelized crust on the outside and that requires starting with the skin as dry as possible. Air dry the chicken out of the package in the fridge for up to four hours. Then, pat it down with a clean paper towel to soak up any remaining moisture.
Start With Chicken That is Room Temperature
Don’t start with an ice cold piece of meat fresh out of the fridge as this can lead to overcooking and uneven cooking. Ideally, let the chicken come to room temperature over an extended period of time a minimum of 20 to 30 minutes before cooking – if you throw an ice cold piece of chicken in a pan, the outside’s going to get dried out by the time the inside is cooked fully.
Start With a Hot Pan
Drizzle some canola or coconut oil in a pan and turn it up to super high heat (avoid butter here). High temperature is important to get a nice sear and caramelization. Avoid using extra virgin olive oil, which has a lower smoking point and will start smoking by the time your pan gets hot enough.
Next, lay your piece of chicken skin side down. After about eight to nine minutes on one side for your average bone-in thigh—obviously that estimate varies—flip it once. Then lower your heat to medium. For extra juiciness, add some fat—a pad of butter, more oil—when you flip your chicken and baste it, spooning the fat over the still cooking chicken. This will make for a moister final product.
Let The Chicken Rest
When it’s finished cooking, just like a good steak, chicken needs to rest. Once you have an internal temperature of 165 degrees, stop the heat and let it rest for few minutes before cutting, so the juices redistribute themselves back through the meat.
Poultry Production Methods
Since the 1950s, industrial production methods (and marketing) have more
than tripled the per capita consumption of chicken in the United States. In
more recent years, less industrialized production methods have gained
ground, leading to more choices
in the marketplace.
FREE-RANGE. Unlike mass-produced chickens, these birds have access to the outdoors. Unfortunately, the birds may not avail themselves of the opportunity to exit the access door and may spend very little time outside. Credible producers of freerange chickens raise their flocks outdoors for a specified time each day. The meat
of this type of free-range chicken may be slightly firmer and more flavorful than that of a cage-raised chicken, depending on how much exercise the bird gets.
PASTURED. A more precise form of free-range production, pastured chickens live in outdoor pens that are moved from
field to field, providing them with a diet containing a high percentage of natural forage. The meat is firmer and much more flavorful than the meat of mass-produced chickens.
ORGANIC. In the United States, organic chickens and their feed must be produced without the use of antibiotics, genetic engineering, chemical fertilizers, sewage sludge, and synthetic pesticides. An organic label can be given to mass-produced chickens that meet these criteria. Organic chickens are not necessarily raised free-range or pastured, but they must be given access to pasture.
KOSHER. In accordance with Jewish religious law, kosher chickens are
raised and harvested humanely with strict bacterial controls. They must be slaughtered by hand by a certified kosher butcher and are salted for up to an hour to draw out their blood. The birds are then rinsed, but because they are still slightly saltier than other chickens, you should not brine them.
Gordon Ramsay Restaurants Chicken Recipes
Chicken Recipes from Gordon Ramsay Restaurants
Different Types of Beef
The most commonly used types of beef are:
- Chuck: Cut from the shoulder; tough but flavorful.
- Shank: Cut from the leg; very tough and chewy.
- Brisket: Cut from the breast; tough if not cooked properly.
- Rib: Cut from the rib area; very tender and flavorful.
- Short plate: Cut from the belly of the cow; chewy and quite tough.
- Flank: Cut from the abdominal muscles of the cow; one of the toughest cuts.
- Loin: Cut from the back of the cow above the ribs; one of the tenderest cuts.
- Sirloin: Cut from the back of the cow just past the loin; pretty tender and flavorful.
- The round: Cut from the back of the cow above the back legs; chewy and tough.
Description: The chuck, also known as the seven-bone steak (in reference to the shape of the bone), is located near the shoulder and neck area of the cow.
Types: The chuck cut yields some of the more economical cuts of beef, such as the chuck roast, chuck arm roast, and the flat iron steak.
How to Cook: The chuck contains a significant amount of connective tissue, which contains collagen and can be a little tough, but provides great flavor. Chuck cuts of beef are best cooked slowly over time with a crock pot or by braising.
Description: The shank is the leg of the cow and is one of the toughest meats. This is because the leg muscle is constantly used, creating a tough, sinewy cut. Therefore, it is one of the less popular, but also one of the cheapest.
Types: The Shank doesn’t yield very many cuts of meat, just the shank or the shank cross cut. It is also used in very low fat ratios of ground beef.
How to Cook: The shank is best cooked over a long period and in liquid. It is best in soups, stews, or to make beef stock.
Description: Brisket is cut from the breast or the lower portion of the cow. Like the shank, it has a lot of connective tissue and can be quite tough unless cooked properly.
Types: The brisket is known by two main cuts of meat: brisket flat cut and the brisket point cut.
How to Cook: Brisket is a favorite of BBQ’ers everywhere and is best cooked smoked or braised.
Description: The rib includes some of the finest cuts of the cow, and is the known for its juiciness, tenderness, superb marbling, and flavor. The rib cut refers to ribs 6 through 12 on the cow.
Types: The rib includes several of the finest cuts of the cow, including the prime rib, short rib, rib-eye steak, and rib-eye roasts.
How to Cook: Rib cuts are best cooked over dry heat and for long periods of time, on the grill or on a smoker – low and slow.
Description: The short plate is located on the front belly of the cow below the ribs. It contains a lot of cartilage and is kind of fatty and tough.
Types: It contains a few different cuts including the short ribs, hangar steak, and the skirt steak. It is best known for being used to make carne asada.
How to Cook: Best braised because of its toughness.
Description: The flank is a long flat cut from the abdominal muscles of the cow. It is one of the toughest cuts of meat.
Types: The flank is usually cut into flap steaks or flank steaks. It is typically used in Asian and Mexican cuisine as stir-fry or fajita beef. It can also be used in London broil.
How to Cook: Due to its excessive toughness, flank cuts are best cooked with moist methods like braising.
Description: The loin is cut from the back of the cow, typically a portion of the hindquarter directly behind the ribs. It is one of the most tender and desirable cuts of beef.
Types: The loin is best known for producing filet mignon, porterhouse steak, and the T-bone steak. However, it also contains the KC strip, tenderloin roast, and the shell steak.
How to Cook: Loin cuts are best cooked over dry heat such as on a grill.
Description: Sirloin is also cut from the back of the cow, just past the loin (a.k.a the short loin). Although, not as tender as the loin cuts, the sirloin is still a very popular cut of beef.
Types: The sirloin contains the top sirloin, bottom sirloin, and center cut sirloin steaks, as well as the tri-tip steak, filet of sirloin, and the ball tip roast.
How to Cook: Sirloin is best cooked by grilling, but can also be broiled, sautéed, or pan-fried.
Round or Rump
Description: The round, also known as the rump, is a lean cut of meat with very little fat. It is located at the back of the cow near the rear leg. Like the Shank, the round is a tough cut due to the constant use of the cow’s legs.
Types: Despite the round or rump’s toughness, it produces quite a few different cuts of meat that are quite popular. Some of the more common cuts are: rump roast/steak, top round roast/steak, bottom round roast/steak, eye of round roast/steak, and the sirloin tip center roast/steak.
How to Cook: Round cuts are best braised or roasted with low levels of moisture.
Fattiest Cuts of Beef
Fatty cuts of beef generally have more flavor and texture. These cuts have marbling that people come to expect with plenty of flavor. Keep in mind that these cuts tend to be more pricey and contain more saturated fat so they may not be the healthiest to eat all of the time.
Here are some of the fattiest cuts of beef :
Flap steak: This cut tends to be quite chewy and fibrous but still tasty.
Filet mignon (Chateaubriand or tenderloin): The most tender cut of beef and the most expensive. It is prized for its tenderness and flavor.
Porterhouse steak: Another cut from the tenderloin, it is another delicious and pricey cut that is easy to chew.
Skirt steak: This cut, also known as a flank steak, is taken from the plate or chest of the cow. While it has great flavor, it tends to be quite chewy.
New York strip steak: A tougher cut of meat taken from the t-bone area of the cow. This classic cut of meat is still very flavorful, and if cooked correctly it can still be quite tender.
T-bone steak: This cut is from directly below the porterhouse, and it is known for its smooth texture and savory flavor.
Rib-eye steak (rib roast, prime rib): The ideal cut of beef when it comes to tenderness and texture. Its high fat content makes it one of the tastiest cuts.
Gordon Ramsay Restaurants Beef Recipes
Beef Recipes from Gordon Ramsay Restaurants
One Burger Patty
One burger patty can contain hundreds of different cows. According to the Washington Post, “hamburgers are almost always a mishmash of many animals. The ground beef we buy at the supermarket is made of an unknown collection of muscle tissues.”
Different Types of Pork
Chops are to pork what steaks are to beef. Most pork chops are cut perpendicular to the backbone from the central loin section, which runs about 18 inches long from the hog’s shoulders to its hips. The shoulders and hips support more weight than the central loin, so pork chops vary in tenderness, toughness, and fat content: How the hogs were raised matters, too. Pasture-raised pork tends to be richer and more flavorful but also a bit tougher and less consistent than commodity pork.
How Do You Keep Pork Chops Juicy
The keys to juicy chops are brining and being careful not to overcook them. Most pork chops come from the leanest part of the hog, the loin, so they tend to dry out when grilled. Plus, modern hog breeds like Yorkshire and Poland China White that produce most of the retail pork have been bred to be leaner than heritage breeds like Dume and Berkshire (also known as Kurobuta). Both wet and dry brines help pork chops stay juicy.
How Best To Cook Pork Chops
Most chops can go directly over the heat, but it helps to build a fire with two heat levels, especially if you’re grilling thick chops. Use the higher heat area for searing and browning the surface, and use the lower heat area with the grill lid down to cook the chops through without burning the surface. Bone-in chops take a little longer to cook.
When is a Pork Chop Done?
A thermometer is indispensable. The color of meat is not a reliable doneness indicator, and it may be safe to eat pink pork. According to the USDA and the National Pork Board, pork chops are safe to eat when cooked to an internal temperature of 145°F (63°C).
What’s the Best Cut of Pork Chop?
For grilling, we prefer bone-in rib-eye chops that are at least 1 ½ inches thick. But try different cuts to see which you like best. Pork chops were renamed a few years ago so they would correspond more closely with the terms used for beef steaks.
Blade Chops – Also called shoulder chops, these are cut from the shoulder blade of the hog. Blade chops include some bone and various intersecting muscles. When cut thick (at least 2 inches), they’re called pork blade steaks or shoulder steaks. Either way, the muscles here are well developed, interspersed with connective tissue and fat, and have a meaty flavor and chewy texture.
How to Cook Blade Pork Chops – Blade chops are found closer to the shoulder area. They have bones, and are usually thick, with marbling. They are often are butterflied and sold as country-style ribs. The extra marbling means these ribs will stay moist and tender if you braise them, and they are the perfect cut of pork for cooking on the grill.
The Cut – Blade Chop, Pork Shoulder Steak, Pork Steak. This cut comes from the shoulder. It is a cross section cut of the Boston Butt and has a large bone through the middle. Tough and loaded with connective tissue this chop should be marinated before grilling. It can also be grilled or smoked low and slow to maximize the tenderness.
Blade Chop Recipes:
Rib-Eye Chops – Just like beef rib-eye steaks, pork rib-eye chops are cut from the rib section of the loin, closer to the shoulder. They are somewhat tender and marbled with a moderate amount of fat, which keeps them from drying out on the grill. Formerly called rib chops, they fetch the highest price.
How to Cook Rib-Eye Pork -Chops Rib-eye pork chops are the pork equivalent of a rib-eye steak. They are the meat and one bone of a “prime rib.” Because they are typically well-marbled chops, they are juicy and tender. Perfect for grilling, pan-frying or broiling, rib-eye chops—like all pork—should be cooked to an internal temperature of 145°F.
The Cut – Bone-In Ribeye Chop, Rib End Cut
Cut from the lower loin, this is one of the best pork chops money can buy. Trim excess fat and cook hot and fast. This cut can be treated like a good steak and seasoned simply or however you like it.
Rib Eye Chop Recipes:
Porterhouse Chops – While rib-eye chops have a single eye of loin meat on one side of the bone, porterhouse or T-bone chops also include a bit of pork tenderloin on the other side, like a T-bone steak. This cut used to be called a center-cut or bone-in loin chop.
How to Cook Porterhouse Pork Chops – Porterhouse pork chops are the best of both worlds – they have loin and tenderloin on either side of the T-shape bone in the middle of the chop. Any recipe for T-bone steak will work with these pork chops. One of the most important parts of learning how to cook a pork chop is to get to get an internal temperature read of 145°F. Any quick cooking technique, whether you grill, broil, sauté or pan-fry, works best, as it will keep them tender. Avoid braising however as it is best for pork shoulder recipes.
The Cut – Porterhouse Chop, Top Loin Chop
Cut from the center loin this pork chop has both loin and tenderloin sections. Generally a large cut, it is the porterhouse of pork. Great grilled hot and fast, this can be lightly seasoned for a perfect meal.
Porterhouse Chop Recommended Recipes:
New York Chops – Once known as a top loin chop, this boneless cut is not the most flavorful, but it is the leanest and most tender. It is sometimes thinly cut(¼ to½ inch) and called a breakfast chop or pork minute steak.
How to Cook New York or Center-cut Pork Chops – New York pork chops, also called center-cut chops, are the pork chop version of a New York strip steak. They either can be boneless or on the bone, but most markets sell only the boneless pork chop. They range in thickness from ½ inch to 2 inches. To keep the thickest chops moist and to avoid overcooking, consider searing on the grill or stovetop and finishing in the oven. Remember that pork doesn’t need to be cooked to 160°F anymore. The new guideline established by the USDA is 145°F. The cooking time is not influenced by whether the cut of meat contains a bone and the time remains the same.
NY Chop Recipes:
Sirloin Chops – The most economical cut, a sirloin chop comes from just above the hog’s hind leg and often includes a bit of hip bone. Neither tender and lean nor tough and rich, sirloin chops represent the more variable middle ground.
How to Cook Sirloin Pork Chops – Sirloin pork chops are closer to the hip. Really, they’re the pork equivalent of a rump roast. They’re great when you’re looking for a Healthy Living option, like our Lime Pork Chops with Asparagus. Because they are lean, quick-cooking is best. Braising is not a good option for this cut.
The Cut – Sirloin Chop – From below the loin section, this cut contains different kinds of meat making is a challenge to grill and keep tender. This pork chop should be marinated for several hours before grilling. This is also a good cut for braising.
Sirloin Chop Recipes:
Pork ribs are cut from the rib cage of the hog. Tough connective tissue, fat, and a mixture of fine-grained and coarse meat surround the rib bones. Coaxing a rack of ribs to tender, juicy succulence takes a little practice but is well worth the effort.
WHAT CUT OF RIBS WORKS BEST ON THE GRILL?
You can grill any cut of ribs. Here are your choices.
Baby Back Ribs: Also known as loin back ribs, these are smaller than spareribs and come
from the hog’s back, hence the name. A slab
of baby backs has eight to thirteen ribs and the meat is leaner, more tender, and less flavorful than spareribs.
Spareribs: Cut from the side of the hog, spareribs come in a slab of at least eleven bones. The slab tapers at one end and has a flap of tough brisket meat attached to the wider end. Larger and richer tasting than baby backs and with a more satisfying chew, spareribs are our preferred
cut of ribs for grilling.
St. Louis-Style Ribs: A rack of spareribs includes a triangular section of rib tips with portions
of breast meat, sternum, and diaphragm. When removed, the rack looks perfectly rectangular and is called a St. Louis cut. This cut of spareribs cooks more evenly than a full rack of spareribs and is easier to portion into individual servings, so we generally prefer it for grilling.
Country-Style Ribs: These are not really ribs because they are not from the rib section. Often sold as individual “ribs,” bone-in country-style ribs are cut from the shoulder blade, and boneless country-style ribs come from a rear portion of loin. The bone-in style can be grilled like pork blade chops, and the boneless style can be grilled like sirloin chops.
HOW DO YOU PREP RIBS FOR GRILLING?
Whichever ribs you prefer, be sure to remove the shiny white membrane from the underside (bone side) of the rack. This membrane tightens and toughens during cooking, keeping the finished ribs from tasting tender. Lift up a corner of the membrane with the tip of a knife, then grab it with a paper towel and slowly pull off the entire membrane in a single sheet. Removing the membrane also allows your seasoning to penetrate more deeply into the meat.
WHAT’S THE BEST WAY TO KEEP RIBS MOIST?
Ribs include a fair amount of tough connective tissue, and portions of the meat itself can be lean and prone to dryness, especially if you prefer baby back ribs. Slow cooking and adding moisture are the secrets to dissolving tough collagen into rich-tasting gelatin and keeping lean ribs from drying out. You can brine the ribs to help them hang onto moisture as they cook. You can keep a pan of steaming liquid in the closed grill to help introduce moisture. You can spritz, baste, or mop the ribs with liquid as they cook. And you can wrap cooked ribs in aluminum foil so they steam in their own juices while resting off the heat. All four methods work reasonably well, but our preferred methods are brining and using a water pan in the grill. These two methods result in juicy, tender ribs that still have a satisfying chew.
WHEN DO YOU APPLY BARBECUE SAUCE?
At the very end. Most barbecue sauces are high in sugar and burn easily on the grill. Brush on barbecue sauce only during the last 10 to 15 minutes of cooking and let your guests add extra sauce at the table.
Dessert is the sweet treat served at the end of a meal, the incentive for kids to eat their vegetables, the Achilles’ heel for most dieters, and the go-to fix for those with sugar addictions. A dessert is typically the sweet course that concludes a meal in the culture of many countries, particularly Western culture. The different types of desserts include:
- Custards and Puddings
- Frozen Desserts
- Chocolates and Candies
Custards and Puddings
The strict culinary definition of custard is eggs and milk mixed and baked, or stirred over gentle heat until thickened. Elegant, easy, and creamy, custards and puddings are the ultimate make-ahead dessert. Custards are milk or cream-based and are typically firmer than pudding. Creamy custards and puddings typically include a thickened dairy base. The thickener used determines whether it’s a custard or a pudding. Generally, custards are cooked and thickened with eggs. Crème brûlée and flan are both baked custards. Puddings are thickened with starches. Two common types of puddings are rice and tapioca. The main difference between custards and puddings lies in the use of eggs. Pudding involves cornstarch or flour as a thickener, while custard uses eggs as its secret weapon.
Frozen desserts are technically a dessert made by freezing flavored liquids, semi-solids and sometimes even solids, or purées added and the varieties are seemingly endless. They may be based on flavored water, on fruit purées, on milk and cream, on custard, on mousse, and others. It is sometimes sold as ice-cream in South Asia and other countries. Ice cream consists of cream slowly stirred in a churn to freeze it to a creamy consistency. Gelato uses a milk base instead of cream and has less air mixed into it than ice cream. Frozen custard uses a cooked base of egg yolks. For a dairy-free dessert, try a sorbet, which is made from churned fruit purees. Frozen yogurt uses yogurt rather than the heavier cream base of ice cream.
Cake is a form of sweet food made from flour, sugar, and other ingredients, that is usually baked.
The most commonly used cake ingredients include flour, sugar, eggs, butter or oil or margarine, a liquid, and leavening agents, such as baking soda or baking powder. Common additional ingredients and flavorings include dried, candied, or fresh fruit, nuts, cocoa, and extracts such as vanilla, with numerous substitutions for the primary ingredients. Cakes can also be filled with fruit preserves, nuts or dessert sauces, iced with buttercream or other icings, and decorated with marzipan, piped borders, or candied fruit.
Most traditional cakes call for a standard mix of ingredients: sugar, butter, leavening, and gluten (flour). Keeping a few basic ingredients on hand, and using them correctly, will ensure that your cakes are perfect every time. Some varieties of cake are widely available in the form of cake mixes, wherein some of the ingredients (usually flour, sugar, flavoring, baking powder, and sometimes some form of fat) are premixed, and the cook needs add only a few extra ingredients, usually eggs, water, and sometimes vegetable oil or butter.
A cookie is a baked or cooked food that is typically small, flat and sweet. It usually contains flour, sugar and some type of oil or fat. It may include other ingredients such as raisins, oats, chocolate chips, nuts, etc.
Cookies originated as small cakes. The name cookie, comes from the Dutch word “koekje” meaning “little cake,” according to the Nibble’s website. They were spoonfuls of cake batter cooked to test the oven temperature before ovens had thermometers. Cookies vary in size, shape and texture, but many share variations of basic ingredients such as sweetener, eggs, butter or shortening and flour. Varieties include chocolate chip cookies, sugar cookies, gingersnaps, tender shortbread, chewy oatmeal cookies, crispy meringues and cake-like bar cookies.
A pie is a baked dish which is usually made of a pastry dough casing that completely contains a filling of various sweet or savory ingredients.
Pies are defined by their crusts. A filled pie (also single-crust or bottom-crust), has pastry lining the baking dish, and the filling is placed on top of the pastry but left open. A top-crust pie has the filling in the bottom of the dish and is covered with a pastry or other covering before baking. A two-crust pie has the filling completely enclosed in the pastry shell. Shortcrust pastry is a typical kind of pastry used for pie crusts, but many things can be used, including baking powder biscuits, mashed potatoes, and crumbs.
The simplest form of pie involves a crust with a filling. The crust can be on the top and bottom or just the bottom, made from pastry or graham cracker crumbs. Pie fillings include custards, puddings, nuts and fruits. Chocolate cream pie, lemon meringue pie, shoo-fly pie, pecan pie, apple pie and tarts are just some pie variations. Tarts use a baking pan with straight sides and don’t have a top crust.
Chocolates and Candies
Chocolate is a usually sweet, brown food preparation of roasted and ground cacao seeds that is made in the form of a liquid, paste, or in a block, or used as a flavoring ingredient in other foods.
Baking chocolate, also called bitter chocolate, contains cocoa solids and cocoa butter in varying proportions, without any added sugar. Powdered baking cocoa, which contains more fiber than it contains cocoa butter, can be processed with alkali to produce dutch cocoa. Much of the chocolate consumed today is in the form of sweet chocolate, a combination of cocoa solids, cocoa butter or added vegetable oils, and sugar. Milk chocolate is sweet chocolate that additionally contains milk powder or condensed milk. White chocolate contains cocoa butter, sugar, and milk, but no cocoa solids.
Chocolates and candy involve the crystallization of sugar. The size of the sugar crystals determines the texture of the candy. Rock candy has large sugar crystals and a crunchy texture, but fudge contains small sugar crystals, giving it a smooth taste. Candy and chocolate desserts include fudge, caramel, lollipops, taffy, marshmallows, fondant, pralines and cotton candy.
Pastry is a dough of flour, water and shortening that may be savory or sweetened. Sweetened pastries are often described as bakers’ confectionery. The word “pastries” suggests many kinds of baked products made from ingredients such as flour, sugar, milk, butter, shortening, baking powder, and eggs. Small tarts and other sweet baked products are called pastries. Common pastry dishes include pies, tarts, quiches, croissants, and pasties.
Pastry is differentiated from bread by having a higher fat content, which contributes to a flaky or crumbly texture. A good pastry is light and airy and fatty, but firm enough to support the filling weight.
The same flaky pastry used to make pie crusts is applied to other desserts such as cream puffs, baklava, eclairs, Danish pastries and palmiers. Profiteroles consist of an unleavened dough with a high amount of fat. During preparation, the pastry dough is handled lightly to keep the finished pastry light and airy in texture.
White chocolate is Not chocolate
White chocolate isn’t actually chocolate. Despite its name, white chocolate doesn’t actually contain any real chocolate components. According to Bon Appetit, the item is made up of a blend of sugar, milk products, vanilla, lecithin, and cocoa butter — no chocolate solids.
Popsicle Invented by Accident
An 11-year-old invented the Popsicle by accident. In 1905 11-year-old Frank Epperson left a mixture of soda and water in a cup outside overnight. His mixture froze and he ate his newfound treat.
The Red Food Dye Used in Skittles is Made From Boiled Beetles
Carmine, also known as carminic acid, is a common red food dye that can be found in Skittles, maraschino cherries, raspberry and strawberry-flavored junk food, and even lipstick.
Carminic acid also happens to be made from the crushed carcasses of a beetle known as the Dactylopius coccus.
Potatoes can Absorb and Reflect Wi-fi Signals
When Boeing wanted to test out their wireless signal on new planes in 2012, they placed giant piles of potatoes on seats. Because of their high water content and chemical makeup, potatoes absorb and reflect radio and wireless signals just like humans do.
Bananas Are Technically Berries
Bananas — along with cucumbers and kiwis — are classed as berries, whereas strawberries, blackberries and raspberries are not.
To be considered a berry in the botanical sense, the fruit must come from one flower with one ovary and typically have several seeds, Stanford Magazine explains. Raspberries, strawberries, and blackberries don’t count because they come from a single flower with more than one ovary.
Apple Pie is Not American
“As American as apple pie” isn’t actually very American. Pie was invented in Medieval England, while the modern recipe for apple pie with a lattice crust was created and perfected by the Dutch.