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  • +48

    Food Science Basics

    Food Science Basics
    There are dozens of scientific principles at work during the cooking process. As an introduction to the topic of food science, this guide, provided to Chef's Blade by The Culinary Institute of America, provides an overview of the most basic of these principles. Sections: 1. Heat Transfer 2. Egg Structure and Uses 3. Effects of Heat on Starches & Sugars 4. ...
    Rated: +48
  • +1

    Guidelines for Plating Sauces

    Guidelines for Plating Sauces
    • Maintain correct temperature. Check the temperature of the sauce, of the food being sauced, and of the plate. Be sure that hot sauces are extremely hot, warm emulsion sauces are as warm as possible without danger of breaking, and cold sauces remain cold until they come in contact with hot foods. • Consider the texture of the food being served. ...
    Rated: +1
  • +3

    Chef Essentials: Tomato Sauce

    Chef Essentials: Tomato Sauce
    Tomato sauces of all sorts, from simply seasoned and fresh to complex and highly seasoned, are featured in cuisines around the world. Tomato sauce is a generic term used to describe any sauce that is based mainly on tomatoes. Tomato sauces can be made several ways. They may be raw or cooked, anywhere from ten minutes to several hours. In some ...
    Rated: +3
  • +5

    Beyond Sweet and Savory: Umami, the Fifth Taste

    Beyond Sweet and Savory: Umami, the Fifth Taste
    Like many things that we learned in kindergarten, our sense of taste is more complicated than it seems. Even though we’re taught that the human tongue is capable of detecting only four distinct tastes—sweet, salty, sour, and bitter—as we grow up, we encounter many flavors that defy such easy categorization. Although a fine cheese might have notes of sweetness or salt, ...
    Rated: +5
  • +9

    Issues in Ingredient Selection

    Issues in Ingredient Selection
    Chefs consider a number of things when they decide what foods to buy and where to buy them. Menus and daily production needs dictate the ingredients. Beyond that, chefs consider quality, cost, and availability. Today’s chef also needs to think about how foods were raised or grown, the ways in which they were processed before they arrived at the restaurant, and ...
    Rated: +9
  • +8

    Duck Tales: A Head to Tail Duck Cooking

    Duck Tales: A Head to Tail Duck Cooking
    Last Friday I went to my local grocer in search for some onions. Instead of onions, however, I emerged with a duck. Why you ask? Because it caught my eye. Sitting next to the well butchered chicken thighs were whole ducks, necks included - sadly no head nor feet. Impulsively, I went with what was fresh and what looked great. I ...
    Rated: +8
  • +5

    A Glass of Americana: Summer’s Tastiest Ice-Cream Floats

    A Glass of Americana: Summer’s Tastiest Ice-Cream Floats
    An ice-cream float is the quintessential summertime treat in the good ol’ U.S. of A. To enjoy one is to experience a bit of nostalgia for all things Norman Rockwell, even if you’re too young to know exactly who Mr. Rockwell is. The root beer–vanilla ice cream combination is a diner staple, and I don’t know anyone who doesn’t enjoy the ...
    Rated: +5
  • +3

    Receive and Store Foods Safely

    Receive and Store Foods Safely
    It is not unheard of for foods to be delivered to a food service operation already contaminated. To prevent this from happening to you, inspect all goods to be sure they arrive in sanitary conditions. Check the ambient temperature inside the delivery truck to see that it is adequate. Check the temperature of the product as well as the expiration dates. ...
    Rated: +3
  • +1

    The Kombucha Craze!

    The Kombucha Craze!
    Today, a baby was delivered to my doorstep. A kombucha baby that is! The past few months I have been an avid kombucha drinker. The taste of kombucha is one of umami, meaning "delicious" in Japanese. There are many theories about how many tastes our tongues can detect; ayurveda says there are six--sweet, salty, sour, butter, pungent, astringent--while science says we ...
    Rated: +1
  • Rate

    How to Make Your Holiday Meal Less Stressful

    Don't let this be you this holiday! Holiday cooking can be stressful and expensive, especially during a recession. Does it have to be? No, it doesn’t. Here are five tips that will take the stress out of this year’s holiday cooking and make it more relaxing and more affordable. Step #1>> [photo:15638] Featured Author: Jeffrey Kraus Growing up helping his ...
  • +4

    Garde Manger Lessons: Forcemeats, Its Descendants, and Foie Gras

    Garde Manger Lessons: Forcemeats, Its Descendants, and Foie Gras
    Forcemeats are a lean meat and fat emulsion that is established when the ingredients are are processed together by grinding, sieving, or pureeing; forcemeats are also one of the most basic components of charcuterie and are used produce many other items such as terrines, pâté en croûte, galantines, and roulades. Depending on the grinding and emulsifying methods used, the texture of ...
    Rated: +4
  • +10

    Keeping Foods out of the Danger Zone

    Keeping Foods out of the Danger Zone
    An important weapon against pathogens is the observance of strict time and temperature controls. Generally, the disease-causing microorganisms found in foods need to be present in significant quantities in order to make someone ill, with the exception of E. coli 0157:H7. Once pathogens have established themselves in a food source, they will either thrive or be destroyed, depending upon how long ...
    Rated: +10
  • +5

    Avoiding Cross Contamination

    Avoiding Cross Contamination
    Many food-borne illnesses are a result of unsanitary handling procedures in the kitchen. Cross contamination occurs when disease-causing elements or harmful substances are transferred from one contaminated surface to another. Excellent personal hygiene is one of the best defenses against cross contamination. An employee who reports for work with a contagious illness or an infected cut on the hand puts every ...
    Rated: +5
  • +2

    Food-Borne Illnesses

    Food-Borne Illnesses
    Foods can serve as carriers for many different illnesses. The most common symptoms of food-borne illnesses include abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, possibly accompanied by fever. These symptoms may appear within a matter of hours after consumption of the affected food, although in some cases several days may elapse before onset. In order for a food-borne illness to be declared ...
    Rated: +2
  • +3

    How to Buy a Chef's Knife and How to Use It

    How to Buy a Chef's Knife and How to Use It
    Here are three tips to help you cut to the chase as you're choosing a chef’s knife: [photo:15100] 1. Make sure the blade extends the entire length of the knife, including through the handle. Plastic or wooden handles attached to a metal blade can break over time. 2. Don’t be afraid to cop a feel before you buy. Hold several knives ...
    Rated: +3
  • +4

    Healthy Cooking Ingredient Selection Issues

    Healthy Cooking Ingredient Selection Issues
    Chefs consider a number of things when they decide what foods to buy and where to buy them. Menus and daily production needs dictate the ingredients. Beyond that, chefs consider quality, cost, and availability. Today’s chef also needs to think about how foods were raised or grown, the ways in which they were processed before they arrived at the restaurant, and ...
    Rated: +4
  • +6

    Introduction to Being a Garde Manger

    Introduction to Being a Garde Manger
    The term garde manger had evolved quite a bit since its original usage. Initially denoting the storage area in which preserved foods such as hams, sausages, and cheeses were held, it now also indicates the station within a professional kitchen where these foods are prepared, the cooks and chefs that preserve these food, as well as the specialization in culinary arts ...
    Rated: +6
  • +1

    How to Pair Sauces

    How to Pair Sauces
    Certain classic sauce combinations endure because the composition is well balanced in all areas: taste, texture, and eye appeal. When choosing an appropriate sauce, it should be: • Suitable for the style of service. In a banquet setting or in any situation where large quantities of food must be served rapidly and at the peak of flavor, choose a sauce that ...
    Rated: +1
  • +3

    Food Styling for the Holidays

    Christmas Mistletoe and Holly Hot Drinks (photo by K.K.) You’ve seen the photographs of all the holiday goodies that inspire you to cook a holiday meal or bring a desert to a holiday party. But have you ever thought about what goes into those photographs? In order to have photographs for a November or December issue in a magazine the ...
    Rated: +3
  • +2

    Sangria Time!

    Sangria Time!
    In summer, the days linger longer and the temperature is warm to hot. It is this time of year, with the garden in blossom and the grass richly green, that the lawn chair beckons and thoughts of Sangria come a ‘knockin. Years ago in San Francisco I was introduced to this elixir at Cha Cha Cha on upper Haight Street, where ...
    Rated: +2