Sunday, March 2, 2008

Miscellaneous Cooking Information

Marinating Pork
If you use a citrus juice marinade for your pork, don't marinate it for more than 2 hours or the meat will be mushy.

How to Cook
This site, How to Cook has some great information. I enjoyed reading this article on plating food.

Meat: Safe Cooking Temperatures
120 - 125 F Rare
130 - 135 F Medium Rare
140 - 145 F Medium
150 - 155 F Medium Well
160 - up F Well Done

135 F Rare
140 - 150 F Medium Rare
160 F Medium
160 - up F Well Done

165 - 175 F

165 - 175 F

150 F

USDA Roasting Timetable for Fresh or Thawed Turkey at 325°F.
These times are approximate and should always be used in conjunction with a properly placed thermometer.
8 to 12 pounds 2 3/4 to 3 hours
12 to 14 pounds 3 to 3 3/4 hours
14 to 18 pounds 3 3/4 to 4 1/4 hours
18 to 20 pounds 4 1/4 to 4 1/2 hours
20 to 24 pounds 4 1/2 to 5 hours

8 to 12 pounds 3 to 3 1/2 hours
12 to 14 pounds 3 1/2 to 4 hours
14 to 18 pounds 4 to 4 1/4 hours
18 to 20 pounds 4 1/4 to 4 3/4 hours
20 to 24 pounds 4 3/4 to 5 1/4 hours

The USDA does not recommend cooking turkey in an oven set lower than 325°F.

Buying Prime Rib Roasts

Beef has thirteen ribs, and usually seven of those are contained in the "rib" cut. The chuck contains the first five ribs, while the thirteenth rib is usually left on the short rib at the packing plant. The primal rib cut normally contains the sixth through the twelfth rib. Those ribs closest in proximity to the short loin are the most tender, while the ones nearest the chuck are less so.

When purchasing a standing rib roast, ask your butcher for the smaller end of the rib portion. The ribs should be trimmed so that they are no more than 7-8 inches in length. The back strap, chine bone and feather bones should be removed. This makes for easier carving at the table. Allow for 2 portions per rib. A four rib roast should provide an adequate serving for eight people. Avoid using anything less than a 3 rib portion as a roast unless you prefer a well done roast. Smaller cuts are best used as steaks.

Foods Not to Freeze
These foods lose flavor, texture, or overall quality when frozen.

Battered and fried foods
Cooked egg whites and yolks, as well as icings made with egg whites
Cottage and ricotta cheeses
Custard and cream pies or desserts with cream fillings
Soups and stews made with potatoes, which can darken and become mushy when frozen
Soups and stews thickened with cornstarch or flour
Sour cream
Stuffed chops or chicken breasts
Whole eggs in the shell, whether raw or cooked

Drink Serving Sizes and How Much to Buy

Punch 24 people per gallon of punch.
Champagne 1 case (12 fifths) serves 50 people (82 drinks). A champagne fountain will operate with as little as 3 bottles of champagne and as much as 5 gallons.
Liquor- Plan on approximately 2 drinks per hour per person. There are 28 drinks per quart of liquor. In order of preference: Vodka - Scotch - Gin - Bourbon.
Coffee 2 to 3 per person for a 3 hour party.
Cocktail Napkins 2 to 3 per person for a 3 hour party.

Table of Party Equivalents
If you are entertaining... Pre-dinner cocktails you'll average... For a party you will average...
4 people 8 to 12 drinks (one fifth required) 12 to 16 drinks (one fifth required)
6 people 12 to 18 drinks (two fifths required) 18 to 24 drinks (two fifths required)
8 people 16 to 24 drinks (two fifths required) 24 to 32 drinks ( two fifths required)
12 people 24 to 36 drinks (three fifths required) 36 to 48 drinks (three fifths required)
20 people 40 to 60 drinks (four fifths required) 60 to 80 drinks (seven fifths required)
25 people 50 to 70 drinks (five fifths required) 75 to 100 drinks (seven fifths required)
40 people 80 to 120 drinks (eight fifths required) 120 to 150 drinks (ten fifths

Useful Substitutions

Chili Peppers:
This site explains all the different kinds of pepper, from Aji Chile to Urfa, with photos.

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This web site is from my years of collecting recipes that I have enjoyed. You will find recipes I've clipped from newspapers, copied out of cookbooks, recipes from relatives and friends. I've given credit when I remembered from whom or where I got the recipe. The recipes that say "Julie's" in front of them, do not mean I created it. I've just made it so many times, I now claim it as my own. Others' names in front of the recipes only mean they gave me the recipe. They may not be the original creator. I have not tested all of these recipes except the ones with my name in front of them, but I'm sure they are GREAT!


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