19-23: Nuts

19-23: Nuts

Do you enjoy nuts? I wasn’t a big fan of them growing up, but find myself warming up to them in my adult years. 19-23: Nuts is another entry from Simply Delicious’ Cooking School, and it outlines a lot of different types of nuts, ranging from the more common to some less frequently used kinds. Nuts are found in all types of cuisines, and are a good source of protein and other healthy stuff.

In case Simply Delicious isn’t enough for you, here’s a link to the Wikipedia entry for nuts. Compare that to the “nut” wisdom from 35 years ago you can find after the jump.


Read more

19-17: Butter, Margarine, and Oils II

19-17: Butter, Margarine, and Oils II

To start off 2023, here’s a follow-up to an entry I wrote almost 7 years ago–better late than never, I always say. 19-17: Butter, Margarine, and Oils II is the sequel to 19-16: Butter, Margarine, and Oils I–I had promised back then that I’d write it, I just didn’t think it’d take me that long to do it. You’ll see why this one took so much longer than the first one once you get into it.

To give you an idea of why this one took so much longer: it actually gets more into the different types of oils and fats–the first one was more of a brief overview of the concept.

After the jump, I’ll give some links to Simply Delicious recipes that use these different types of oils. We’ll also take a look at the back of the card, which goes into more detail about different types of fats (butter, margarine, lard, etc.).


Read more

19-12: A Variety of Vegetables

19-12: A Variety of Vegetables

Trying to work my way through more of the Cooking School entries–here’s 19-12: A Variety of Vegetables for you. This one comes courtesy of the NEW BOOK, and features 4 vegetables you may or may not be familiar with.

As usual, I’ll give you a little blurb after the jump about each one and then links to a few Simply Delicious recipes that I’ve already covered that use those vegetables. Hey, it’s important to eat your veggies!


Read more

19-6: Fresh Herbs

19-6: Fresh Herbs

Since it’s summer, I didn’t want to miss the opportunity to share my summer garden with you, courtesy of 19-6: Fresh Herbs. This one came from the new book, and is the prequel (of sorts) to 19-7: Fresh and Dried Herbs. I had lamented not being able to easily find fresh tarragon back when I wrote that one–well, now I grow it myself in my own backyard.

Growing my own herbs in my own garden for use in cooking was one of the top reasons I wanted to buy my own place, and the garden situation outside was one of my main factors when selecting a house (back when you could have preferences about things like that and didn’t just have to overpay for whatever was available).

I use my homegrown herbs for cooking all year round, and it’s quite the pleasure to be able to use just the amount needed fresh from my own backyard rather than buy overpriced herbs at the grocery store and then watch them wilt and die in my fridge.


Read more

20-8: Pie Crust

20-8: Pie Crust

I missed getting this one out in time for 4th of July, but summer’s far from over here in the U.S. If you happen to have some seasonal fruit or are looking for a lighter dinner option (I grew up on quiches and I love them), 20-8: Pie Crust can be a great base recipe for both of those. And of course, this isn’t limited to just summer–pie crusts are useful all year round.

You can even make up a bunch of pie crust dough balls using this recipe and freeze them individually–just pull one out when needed and let it defrost.


Read more

19-19: Root Vegetables I

19-19: Root Vegetables I

I haven’t done a Cooking School entry in forever, so here’s 19-19: Root Vegetables I for your reading pleasure. You can expect 19-20: Root Vegetables II sometime in the near-to-distant future (EDIT: done, linked).

Wikipedia has a pretty extensive list of root vegetables, so if Simply Delicious doesn’t discuss what you’re looking for, they’ve got you covered. It’s a good time for root vegetables, so think about how you can incorporate some into your mealtime rotation if you’re interested.


Read more

19-7: Fresh and Dried Herbs

19-7: Fresh and Dried Herbs

19-7: Fresh and Dried Herbs has been a recipe-in-the-making for a few months. I mention frequently that I often write these entries months after I complete the actual recipe, but this one actually took me that long TO complete.

19-7 Fresh and Dried Herbs

Usually, these Cooking School cards don’t have too much in the way of actual recipes–often times it’s more like the card above, more recommendation than actual recipe. I’m not going to restate what they’ve written here–it’s all good advice. Jump behind the cut for some herb blend recipes as well as a DIY vinegar challenge and BONUS limoncello recipe.


Read more

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.

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.


Read more

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.

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!


Read more

20-12: Basic Rolls

20-12: Basic Rolls

Playing a bit of catch-up here since unscheduled interruptions, other non-food-related projects, and massive amounts of holiday baking have put me far behind in terms of keeping up with posts. I had started working on a Bread Series, starting with 18-1: Basic Yeast Dough I which I published back in October. Covering 20-12: Basic Rolls was intended to play off of that concept, giving you an easy recipe to utilize the lessons presented in both that post and its follow-up, 18-2: Basic Yeast Dough II.

20-12 Basic Rolls

Quick review: the last three chapters of Simply Delicious are part of its Cooking School, intended to review basic techniques, ingredients, and recipes with which all aspiring chefs should be familiar. I’ve covered a few bits and bobs out of those last few chapters, but much of it still remains untapped.


Read more