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Old 12-18-2004, 01:46 PM   #11
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Inventing new recipes

I love collecting cookbooks but rarely follow a recipe when it comes to meals, as well. I'm not much of a baker but recently received my mom's homemade baking cookbook...she has many recipes that have ingredients and no instructions, so I find them hard to follow.

I just finished creating a 20 page booklet for my sister for a Christmas present because much of the baking is Christmas cookies. Hopefully she will be able to help me decipher the recipes, so we can carry on the wonderful recipes mom made.
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Old 12-30-2004, 05:36 PM   #12
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I like to pull out 3-6 cookbooks, put them in a stack, read all the recipes for what I want to make, then make up my own.
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Old 01-02-2005, 11:33 AM   #13
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I am totally flummoxed when I read that baking is a science while other types of cooking are not. What's the real distinction? Weights and measures? Don't think so. I vote for habit and practice.

If I'm cooking something unfamiliar, I start with a recipe.

If you routinely cook X type of food or dish you learn the basic routine and can substitute/tweak from there. Habit and practice teach you that and it doesn't matter whether it's a baked good or not.

I also think our eathing habits have shifted over several generations - breads and savory pastries used to be more a staple of the average person's diet but we've shifted away from that so the average cook now has less experience making them. The "scientists" move into the void.
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Old 01-02-2005, 01:30 PM   #14
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I do sometimes. It's really easy to improvise with sauces/meats/fish.
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Old 01-02-2005, 06:31 PM   #15
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Yes, inventnon and creation is always a big part of it. It's one of the reasons that I like cooking so much!
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Old 01-03-2005, 09:44 PM   #16
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I'm a lot like Claire - unless I'm trying to duplicate something specifically from a recipe I know the dish was created from ... I'll look for several variations and mix-n-match to create the flavor I'm looking for.

Poor Sub - I know how you feel. I get bumfuzzeled at people who get flummoxed because they can't accept the fact that cookery is more of an art than a science ... and baking, while there is room for artistic expression, is based on a science of ratios of certain ingredients. No, the more accurate weights and measures do not make it more of a science - it is because it is more of a science that the greater accuracy in measurement is needed.
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Old 02-02-2005, 11:26 PM   #17
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I definitely feel that baking is more of a science than other kinds of cooking. For example, if you decide to make fried rice, and you don't have eggs, you will still have a great rice dish when you are through. If you subtract the eggs from a baking recipe, you'll have something inedible. You can decide when your meat is done to your taste, and pull it out of the oven then. Try that with a cake. You really need to have the science of baking down before you can experiment, whereas with other types of cooking, you can simply taste until you like the flavor. You cannot do that with a bread (gee, halfway along I decide I need more cinnamon in my Greek chili, I add more. Can't do that with cinnamon bread). You simply need to know what makes a pastry or bread go up or fall, whereas you can do stove-top-cooking to taste. Baking is serious science before you can experiment.
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Old 02-04-2008, 11:31 AM   #18
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Sometimes I do create recipes, with ingredients I have on hand and when hubby tastes it , he asks what is it called? I don't have names for them
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Old 02-06-2008, 04:46 AM   #19
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I like to think of myself as a decent cook. I tweak recipes all the time and I do develop my own from scratch. But, when it comes to baking, I'm a complete flop! I think baking is more of a science, as certain exact amounts react with other certain amounts and out comes a perfect product. It's hard to cover up a bad piece of baking, but I can 'fix up' a bad cooking recipe most times.
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Old 02-14-2008, 12:37 AM   #20
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create your own... Absolutely!!! thats the fun of cooking. Actually, I seldom follow a recipe.. Baking I think you need to either really know what you are doing or use a recipe. For dinner etc.... not so much....
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