18-16: Basic Kitchen Tools

18-16: Basic Kitchen Tools

Finishing out the month with a Cooking School entry that’s been in my queue for OVER A YEAR. I took the pictures for 18-16: Basic Kitchen Tools at the same time as 18-3: Good Kitchen Knives, 18-6: Basic Pots and Pans, and 18-15: Basic Kitchen Utensils, but somehow just never got around to actually producing the entry on it. Well, better late than never, I suppose.

18-16 Basic Kitchen Tools
My plan for this entry is pretty much going to be like the ones I linked above that are similar to it–a few quick blurbs about each of the tools, and perhaps a few shots of some of my own gear that corresponds to the pictures. It’s going to be a wild ride.

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18-2: Basic Yeast Dough II

18-2: Basic Yeast Dough II

Happy New Year! 🍾 We’ll start off this year (as I have other years) by finishing up a bit of old business from last year. I had started a Bread Series at the end of 2017, covering the first part of this Cooking School set (18-1: Basic Yeast Dough I) as well as including 20-12: Basic Rolls as a good base recipe to practice with.

Here, we’ll cover 18-2: Basic Yeast Dough II, which includes the fundamentals of the process of bread-making, as well as some tips on how to tell where your bread may have gone wrong. I’ve been making bread for a while, and I still run into trouble–it’s nice to know what I might have messed up so that I can try to fix it for the future.

18-2 Basic Yeast Dough II
Bread making is not a quick process–sometimes you can be working on a bread for 24-48 hours between the blooming, kneading, rising, and proofing. When I was being trained to make bread in the restaurant I worked in a few years ago, we would start making bread at 8 AM, and barely be finished by dinner time around 5-6 PM.

That’s not including our starter which had to be fed every day, as well as making all of the other baked goods that our pastry chef made daily. It can be a LOT of work!

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18-1: Basic Yeast Dough I

18-1: Basic Yeast Dough I

I’ve made a lot of bread during the 3.5 years I’ve been working on this project (both for the project and outside of it), and I hear a lot of the same remarks whenever I talk about making bread: “Oh, that seems hard”, or “It’s too much work to make bread”. I used to feel the same way, and shied away from yeast recipes for a long time out of a fear of failure. In cooking (like most things in life), you have to be ready to embrace failure and learn from it–otherwise, you’ll never get past heating up Hot Pockets in the microwave.

18-1 Basic Yeast Dough I
Simply Delicious even notes in their recipe blurb that bread making is perceived as hard. It’s maybe not the easiest thing in the world, but you’ll make a lot of friends fast if you can make them fresh bread. 18-1: Basic Yeast Dough I is the first in a three-part series on bread making, where you’ll learn some tips and tricks for improving your bread baking, as well as a few basic recipes that you can use.

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18-15: Basic Kitchen Utensils

18-15: Basic Kitchen Utensils

Doing a bit of housekeeping…here’s one that’s been sitting in my draft queue since around Christmas. 18-19: Basic Kitchen Utensils covers exactly what it says–basic tools even novice cooks should have in their kitchen. This is part of Cooking School, the back segment of Simply Delicious that covers basic techniques, ingredients, and recipes for all levels of aspiring chefs.

18-15 Basic Kitchen Utensils
After the jump, I’ll show you what I’ve got in my own kitchen (similar to how I covered 18-3: Good Kitchen Knives and 18-6: Basic Pots and Pans). None of it’s super fancy, but it gets the job done.

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18-10: Pasta II

18-10: Pasta II

Back with another Cooking School follow-up to 18-19: Pasta I from a few weeks ago.  18-10: Pasta II discusses proper pasta making techniques & cooking methods on its front face, as well as offering some tips on using fresh and dried varieties. On the back side, the deep dive into the myriad of pasta shapes that started with 18-9: Pasta I continues–this card covers smaller forms like penne, farfalle, and tortellini.

18-10 Pasta II
Most of this advice is pretty generic–here’s a basic pasta dough recipe, and pasta cooking methods are outlined pretty well here. I’ve made both plain dough as well as some with spinach and sun-dried tomato–it’s a lot of work, but the taste difference is pretty noticeable. I don’t currently have a pasta machine, but I’d love to add one to my already-too-large collection of kitchen appliances and tools.

After the jump, read about some more pasta shapes–there’s some links to a few additional pasta dishes we’ve already covered here as well.

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18-6: Basic Pots and Pans

18-6: Basic Pots and Pans

Back again with another Cooking School entry from the back of Simply Delicious18-6: Basic Pots & Pans is a featured topic discussing different types of cookware that can be used, with tips on handling, usage, & storage. Pot & pan types are controversial for some cooks, and what one person stands by may be another’s no-go. 👩‍🍳

18-6 Basic Pots and Pans
In this entry, I really only plan to show you what I’ve got going in my own kitchen as of the time I wrote it, and I’ll probably pepper in some links to different pieces on cookware. I can’t claim any real authority on any of this stuff besides my own personal experience and knowledge, but I can at least maybe add one more opinion out there. 🍳

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18-9: Pasta I

18-9: Pasta I

Simply Delicious dedicates its last few chapters to “Cooking School“, comprised of informational cards on various techniques, ingredients, & basic recipes that any serious cook should learn to master. 18-9: Pasta I is the first in a two-part series about pasta, the second being 18-10: Pasta II. This particular card covers a few different shapes of pasta, including spaghetti, fettuccini, & lasagna. 🍽

18-9 Pasta I
18-9: Pasta I only begins to scratch the surface of different types of pasta–there are so many more out there. The important takeaways from this particular set of tips are the different kinds of sauce that go with the various shapes, as well as how to identify some common variances in the shapes.  18-10: Pasta II goes more into the cooking and serving of pasta, as well as listing a few more shape/sauce combinations if you’re looking for a bit more from Simply Delicious on the topic. 📚

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18-3: Good Kitchen Knives

18-3: Good Kitchen Knives

It’s a new year, and it’s also been a long time since I’ve covered any of the Cooking School portion of the back of the Simply Delicious cookbook. One of the featured topics is 18-3: Good Kitchen Knives, essential tools for any cook. I’ve had a lot of terrible knives, and I’ve got a long way to go until I make jaws drop with my knife collection, but I’ve got a few that are not too shabby. 🔪

18-3 Good Kitchen Knives
I’m going to try NOT to make this a “look at all my cool knives” kind-of-a-thing, because honestly, my collection isn’t all that Internet-impressive–I don’t have a ton of trendy Japanese pieces or massive cleavers, because I just don’t cook that way too often. Plus, I feel about knives like I feel about cars–give me a broken-in cheap old workhorse over a shiny speedster you’re afraid to scratch up any day of the week. 🚙

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18-18b: Cooking Glossary IIb

18-18b: Cooking Glossary IIb

As I mentioned in the first two installments of this Cooking School mini-series (18-17: Cooking Glossary I and 18-18a: Cooking Glossary IIa), knowing how to decipher and execute what the recipe is asking you to do is an important part of being able to cook. 👩‍🍳


UPDATE 2/5/2017: Went back and updated a few of these–mostly adding to where I’ve done more recipes since the last time I wrote. Edited and fixed some of the pictures that didn’t transfer well from the initial Tumblr migration.  Carry on.

18-18 Cooking Glossary IIa
In this final portion of the Cooking Glossary series, I’ll give you even MORE recipes that I’ve covered so far in this Simply Delicious Cookbook Project, and for those that I don’t have an example, I’ll update it just as soon as I do.

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18-18a: Cooking Glossary IIa

18-18a: Cooking Glossary IIa

I mentioned in 18-17: Cooking Glossary I (the first installment of this mini-series) that I’ll be mixing in Cooking School entries from the last three chapters of Simply Delicious along with the regular recipe/photo entries that I usually do.

Here in 18-18: Cooking Glossary IIa, we find the second page of the glossary that I introduced to you previously. There’s one more page after this one, which you can find at 18-18b: Cooking Glossary IIb. I split the second entry to limit the amount of links/pics/content in one post.


UPDATE 1/29/2017: Went back and updated a few of these–mostly adding to where I’ve done more recipes since the last time I wrote. Edited and fixed some of the pictures that didn’t transfer well from the initial Tumblr migration.  Carry on.

18-18 Cooking Glossary II
Follow the jump for links to recipes I’ve covered that will help you practice each and every one of these terms & techniques! If I haven’t covered the term yet in one of these recipes, I’ll be sure to update it when I do!

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