Jump to content

What Are You Doing In Your Kitchen Right Now?


LauraB
 Share

Recommended Posts

I realized today that I spend an enormous amount of time in my kitchen. And I'm glad of that because good food is one of the most important things in my life. But a lot of the work that's done in the kitchen is not celebrated, it's just background noise. Like, for instance, right now I'm shelling and deveining shrimp, one of my least favorite kitchen tasks. So, I choose my shrimp recipes very carefully -- I do not want to waste my efforts on a bad recipe.

I know we have threads on what we're simmering, what we're baking, what we made for dinner, lunch and breakfast. I don't think we have a thread on 'what completely mundane task are you performing in your kitchen right now. And yet, those very boring tasks often form the foundation for a fabulous meal. And, I would appreciate hearing tips for making those tasks easier, faster, more efficient, etc.

So, what are you doing in your kitchen right now?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Washing dishes - between canning/jamming and making dinner, I went through every pot and pan in the cupboard!

Invision needs a "Like" button.

Simmering broth for noodle soup and drinking equal parts Plymouth gin and Byrrh (full disclosure blah blah blah--go buy it at Ace!) on the rocks.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Screaming. Dinner is over and every square inch of the counter tops is covered with pots, pans and dirty dishes. I've put the leftovers in the fridge. I'm going out to the deck with a glass of wine. When I come back I'm sure that all of this will have magically disappeared. ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Alright, not right now, but end of school parties-this morning, I fixed tatertot casserole, jerked beef & chicken, leftover BBQ pork,w/potato rolls, & coleslaw- most of it was eaten, but this year, they had an abundance of food- chicken enchiladas, beans, rice, & lots of other good stuff...

Lizzy's party is Wednesday, & she's planning on bringing poundcake & bean dip...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Not quite yet, but tonight I have a list of tasks:

-Pit 2 lbs of sour cherries (some are going into cherry almond ice cream and some are getting pickled for cocktails)

-Pickle beets

-Hard boil eggs (these will be pickled in the leftover liquid once the beets are eaten)

-Make the ice cream with the cherries

I will be consuming a lot of alcohol to stay motivated. I'll report back when drunk on how little much I got done.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Busy, busy after farmers market morning visit. Herb brine for chicken. Simmering golden beets, destined to become cold borscht. Boiling eggs and potatoes for potato salad. Packing a jar with little Kirby cukes, kosher salt, garlic, fresh dill, chili peppers and water. In two days they'll be kosher dill half-sours. Baking a loaf of NK bread. I need more refrigerator space for all of my kitchen projects!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Simmering wheatberries that I'll toss with the succotash and chicken sausage leftover from Mintwood Place to make lunch for the next couple of days

Macerating blueberries from the Adams Morgan farmers' market in honey for stirring into the week's breakfast yogurt

Throwing away cherries from the Adams Morgan farmers' market because less than one in ten was edible (I'd say that's a bit beyond "last of the season," friends :angry: )

Cooling a big pot of coffee in prep for a week of iced coffees that will beat the heck out of anything I could buy on the way to work

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Scrubbing the under tray of my outdoor grill. I am not good at keeping up with this task and it had accumulated so much debris that when I put some strip steaks on the grill, their fat dripping onto the already thick coat started a fire. No humans were injured but the steaks were DOA. Expensive lesson learned.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

today: Costco had sockeye filets for $9.99 a pound, so I mixed up some cure (raw sugar, kosher salt, white pepper, coriander and a touch of allspice) and wrapped and weighted the two cure-sprinkled filets with fresh dill in between them.

tomorrow or Thursday: gravlax

I may hot smoke one of the cured filets, but when I hot smoke I don't usually include fresh dill in the cure. Anyone have experience with hot smoking cured gravlax? How does it taste with dill and smoke?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

today: Costco had sockeye filets for $9.99 a pound, so I mixed up some cure (raw sugar, kosher salt, white pepper, coriander and a touch of allspice) and wrapped and weighted the two cure-sprinkled filets with fresh dill in between them.

tomorrow or Thursday: gravlax

I may hot smoke one of the cured filets, but when I hot smoke I don't usually include fresh dill in the cure. Anyone have experience with hot smoking cured gravlax? How does it taste with dill and smoke?

Not exactly the same thing, but I keep intending to try the lox protocols described on this site; their tip is to incorporate the fresh dill at the end of the processing as part of vacuum sealing. Maybe take out the dill for smoking, but put more fresh dill back in at the end?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm taking a break from pitting sour cherries for a crisp. I wanted to have it in the oven by now so as not to heat the house too much as the day got warmer. Baked beans are cooking in the crockpot. No way was I putting the oven on for 4 hours to bake them.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Not exactly the same thing, but I keep intending to try the lox protocols described on this site; their tip is to incorporate the fresh dill at the end of the processing as part of vacuum sealing. Maybe take out the dill for smoking, but put more fresh dill back in at the end?

When I do hot smoking, the salmon gets lightly cooked/smoked after it has been cured. There is no vacuum sealing involved here, I just eat it up when it is ready. So the dill is part of the curing process, and the dill will get rinsed off, along with the curing mixture (salt, sugar, spices, fresh dill weed) when the cure is complete. The dill flavor will have suffused the meat while it was curing. Gravlax is just eaten raw/cured, like regular lox. "Smoked salmon" is cured and cold smoked, not cooked--it still has the consistency of lox or gravlax but is flavored with smoke. I wish I had the capability of cold smoking, but I don't. I have a stove-top smoker which cooks the food while it smokes.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just got back from a quick trip to the store to restock basics like milk, onions, carrots, and few other things. Currently helping prep a lamb roast that was in the freezer and defrosted during the power outage. Roasting on the Big Green Egg with a lemon/rosemary marinade.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm taking a break from pitting sour cherries for a crisp. I wanted to have it in the oven by now so as not to heat the house too much as the day got warmer. Baked beans are cooking in the crockpot. No way was I putting the oven on for 4 hours to bake them.

How do you still have sour cherries?!
Link to comment
Share on other sites

How do you still have sour cherries?!

An outside vendor had them at Eastern Market last Sunday. I was so surprised to see them that I didn't even notice which farm it was.* They had both sour cherries and sweet. I should have used them right away. I had to toss a few because they didn't hold up for the three days. I have no idea when they were picked. The funny thing was that even though I bought them just because I saw them and had no idea what I was going to use them for, I had exactly the right amount for the recipe I decided to make. They were a little worse for age but tasted fine.

*They were distributing the flyer for the new Tuesday farmers' line at the cash register, so I assume it was one of those farms.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm listening for the *clink* of Ball jars sealing. It's a crazy hot day to be waterbath canning (bbq sauce), but I started at 7:30 with a run to the store for ingredients I was low on, and by 11:30 I'm done and the kitchen is cleaned up. The rest of the day will be spent chillaxing under the ceiling fan, with the AC cranked to the max.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm listening for the *clink* of Ball jars sealing. It's a crazy hot day to be waterbath canning (bbq sauce), but I started at 7:30 with a run to the store for ingredients I was low on, and by 11:30 I'm done and the kitchen is cleaned up. The rest of the day will be spent chillaxing under the ceiling fan, with the AC cranked to the max.

I made a small batch of your BBQ sauce on Tuesday, but it will take months for me to use it up. Can it be frozen?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I made a small batch of your BBQ sauce on Tuesday, but it will take months for me to use it up. Can it be frozen?

I haven't done it, but I don't know why not. That said, I had some in the refrig for almost a year and it was fine. There's lots of vinegar in it, and nothing that will spoil or get moldy easily.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

A year later, & I'm still fixing kids' stuff- Lizzy brought in bean dip today (not sure why), & we're doing it again tomorrow, for a tailgate, Tom's cookie dough order came in (& apparently, he told one customer that he would cook all the cookie dough he bought, so he press-ganged his sister into helping him last night)...taking Lizzy out for a bday dinner tonight...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Watched Pati Jinich and Rick Bayless while I was on the recumbent bike earlier. Could that be why I have a pot of pinto beans simmering alongside a saucepot of roasted tomato-guajillo chile salsa? Plan for this evening's dinner is smoked chicken enchiladas with red salsa, refried beans, rice, pico de gallo and guacamole with chips. And beer.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

trying to figure out where to put everything I got at the farmers market this morning: tomatoes, basil, burrata, mozzarella, milk, apple tarts, strawberries, duck eggs, beets, rhubarb

also, slowly finishing making rillettes while the dishes finish. Then rhubarb compote. And I thought about making bread, but I think it might be a cocktail instead.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I just finished salvaging two lamb loin chops I found in the freezer. They had been vacuum-sealed in February 2011, and looked okay. Opened the package up and they smelled okay. Defrosted in the microwave (which never works exactly right for me--it cooks things) until they hit 90F. Then I threw them on a hot grill pan for 3 minutes per side, until they hit 120F. They're browned and have grill marks and are resting in the refrigerator. Later I'll reheat them quickly in the microwave to go with leftovers for dinner. If the scraggly remainder of fresh mint I have in the produce drawer is adequate, I may make some mint sauce to go with them too.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Staring at it, in horror-it's a little grubby, ALL the drawers are breaking (what's that saying about 'for want of a nail'), & next week, I'm throwing a graduation picnic for my son & all the incoming family-hordes of them...& my outside canopy, which I had jerry rigged, committed seppuku in yesterday's rains, collapsing on top of the smoker-now, I really need to break it down & throw it away...I'm feeling rather stressed...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Staring at it, in horror-it's a little grubby, ALL the drawers are breaking (what's that saying about 'for want of a nail'), & next week, I'm throwing a graduation picnic for my son & all the incoming family-hordes of them...& my outside canopy, which I had jerry rigged, committed seppuku in yesterday's rains, collapsing on top of the smoker-now, I really need to break it down & throw it away...I'm feeling rather stressed...

I have an 8' canopy you can borrow if you'd like to.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you for your offer, but any canopy/gazebo that gets erected at this house is immediately marked for death-I did get another replacement on Mother's Day, but decided to try & salvage the last broken one-I can't figure out how I've destroyed 5 of these things in as many years- it's like a mini-tornado vortex at my house, or something (I've had 2 killed within a week of purchase)...it would be humorous, if it wasn't so frustrating (one time, it blew up on top of the garage roof)...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I just finished salvaging two lamb loin chops I found in the freezer. They had been vacuum-sealed in February 2011, and looked okay. Opened the package up and they smelled okay. Defrosted in the microwave (which never works exactly right for me--it cooks things) until they hit 90F. Then I threw them on a hot grill pan for 3 minutes per side, until they hit 120F. They're browned and have grill marks and are resting in the refrigerator. Later I'll reheat them quickly in the microwave to go with leftovers for dinner. If the scraggly remainder of fresh mint I have in the produce drawer is adequate, I may make some mint sauce to go with them too.

Have you tried putting them in a bowl of cold water to defrost? I can't imagine using the microwave. :blink:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Have you tried putting them in a bowl of cold water to defrost? I can't imagine using the microwave. :blink:

I started with cold water but then got frustrated and just went with the defrost setting on the microwave. It works but I always end up having to do immediate further cooking because the item gets somewhat cooked on defrost. I didn't want to wait until right at dinner to determine if these were in decent shape.

They ended up coming out perfectly cooked somehow. The internal color was just exactly right. I probably shouldn't have explained the process to my husband (and date of origin) while he was eating them for dinner, though :rolleyes: .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Listening to the "ping" of canning jars sealing. I made a big batch of my bbq sauce today: 2 gallons for Bev Egg for his new line of porchetta and pulled pork sandwiches, and a gallon for me, which I put up in pint jars and water bath canned so they will be shelf stable.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...