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12″ Stainless Steel Skillet August 20, 2011

Posted by marksun in fry pan, saute, tools.
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Often I realize how little  I know about cooking.  I am amazed by what I just learned by googling “frying pan.”

Today I replaced my years old used and abused TFAL non-stick skillet with a 12″ Kenmore stainless steel skillet from Sears.   This is a fairly heavy skillet, perfectly flat and thick on the bottom.  I always thought that non-stick teflon pans were easier to use, required less oil,  and clean up easier.   The problem I had with the teflon pan was that over time the coating breaks down.   I actually have a large (14″) stainless steel (ss) pan but never learned how to use it correctly.  Mainly,  I never learned  to control the heat and problem of food sticking to the bottom of the pan until now, particularly in the case of frying and sauteing.

(some time later) I am getting the hang of it and I really like cooking with this pan.  To prevent sticking, the technique is to heat the pan first and get it hot, then add oil.  The pan is at the right temperature when a drop of water falling on the pan forms little balls that skitter around – that’s Moms pancake griddle test.  Now add the oil, taking into account that different oils break down and smoke at different temperatures.  The experts say you want to add the food at the point the oil starts to smoke.  OK maybe that’s the point at which oil starts to break down and too hot but close to that point.  When you add food, the temperature is going to drop immediately.

One of the first tests the skillet got was to cook a salmon filet.  I heated the pan as described above,  added oil, and placed the filet in, half expecting it to bond like crazy glue to the bottom of the pan.  It sizzled and started to cook – you can see the filet cook as it changes color from red to pink – … time to turn it, and, the skin did not stick.  Yes!

Another thing about this kind of skillet is that after cooking the fish and removing it, nicely seared and intact from the pan, there remains a brown residue sticking to the bottom of the hot pan.  Add some wine or other liquid and this residue releases in the liquid forming an intensely flavored sauce called a fond.  The fond is a really nice by-product of cooking with a stainless steel skillet.

Cleanup? Easy.

 

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Pork Guisantes – Pork with Peas June 30, 2010

Posted by marksun in Filipino, fry pan, pork.
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Pork Guisantes
slice pork to 1/2 inch
Mince  2 clove garlic
brown
add
1 c water – reduce  med heat,
add
8oz tomato sause
1t vinegar
bay leaf
cinamon-stick
1/4 t pepper
2 T  or so patis  ( or salt)
simmer
add
10 oz +- peas  fresh, froz peas, or canned
1 can garbanzo beans
slicèd red bell pepper
or pimentos at end
Notes
Can also cook sliced potatoes add with the tomato sause 4dec04
The peas and add-ons use up the extra tomato sause.  8 oz is just right for a lg skillet
If the leftovers gets dry add water
22sep  used one slice pork, tofu
whole red pepper sliced sautee till roasted and black  w garlic separatly – shrivels peppers.  In wok or Big pan reduce pork in water first. Then tomato sause vinegar and spices.p

Egg Foo Yung June 30, 2010

Posted by marksun in fry pan.
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Egg Foo Yung
aug 06
This is a base recipe. Add shimp, crab, slivered pork, char sui etc for more flavors.  Quick dish and a good way of using bean spouts and eggs.  As usual I make no claim to authenticity or originality for this recipe.
5 eggs
1/2 cup shredded scallions
1 cup bean sprouts, drained well if canned
options:
sliced small onion cut lengthwise into narrow strips
Cooking method #1
Mix all together and fry in patties. Smother with Egg Foo Yung Gravy.
Cooking method #2
saute the vegetables and other ingredients until tender. Add the eggs at the end all at once.
Execute the fry pan maneuver “the big flip” to get both sides nicely browned.
I prefer onions cooked into they start to caramelize and nearly burn.
Onions can be cooked until either still slightly firm if you like them that way – The local Chinese restaurants often prepare EFY with the onions firm and often as not without a gravy.  Usually there will be slices of char siu, the red sweet roast pork mixed in for flavor.
Gravy
1 cup chicken broth
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon MSG
1 tablespoon cornstarch, mixed with a little water
Salt
Pepper
Cook over low heat until thick.
Serve over Egg Foo Yung.
another Sause
3/4 cup Stock
1/2 tsp Salt
1 tsp Soy sauce
2 tbsp Cornstarch
2 tbsp Water