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Old 07-31-2012, 08:43 PM   #11
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Me too. And I try not to bake.
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Old 07-31-2012, 09:11 PM   #12
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I personally don't measure unless I'm baking. I am more of a "by guess and by golly" type. I give guesstimates when I post a recipe unless I've made a conscious effort to measure everything...
I'll admit to some of that. How much fish sauce to use in my curry? Glug, glug, taste... Decide then if it needs more. I'm sure a "glug" is not an international unit.

I often become very obsessive about amounts, even both weighing and volumetric measure, when developing new recipes. I'm also very obsessive about taking notes, and it's not unusual for me to cook a recipe a couple dozen times with detailed notes for all until I'm happy enough to share the recipe. But after then I go back to the "glug, glug" method. (Except in baking of course.)
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Old 07-31-2012, 09:17 PM   #13
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I often share recipes with people who are not foodies. They know and care less about the subject than I do. As a result, I try to be specific and detailed so my recipes are useful.

If you have been following the "Grandmother's Recipes" thread, you see what happens when recipes you write for yourself end up with others and there is difficulty in understanding.
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Old 07-31-2012, 09:19 PM   #14
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I'll admit to some of that. How much fish sauce to use in my curry? Glug, glug, taste... Decide then if it needs more. I'm sure a "glug" is not an international unit.

I often become very obsessive about amounts, even both weighing and volumetric measure, when developing new recipes. I'm also very obsessive about taking notes, and it's not unusual for me to cook a recipe a couple dozen times with detailed notes for all until I'm happy enough to share the recipe. But after then I go back to the "glug, glug" method. (Except in baking of course.)
I admit that I weighed the cleaned Swiss Chard for the tart I made on Sunday. I also measured the ingredients for the crust because that falls under baking. Also, I use a lot of recipes as inspiration or will try to find one that is very close to what I've done and post the link to that, adding my take on the recipe in case s/one wants to give it a whirl.

I weighed the chard because I was doubling the recipe to make two tarts and the recipe was for one and I didn't purchase the chard, I picked it, so had no idea how much I really had. I also made sure to measure most of the cheese because I was doubling the recipe--but I admit, I did add more cheddar because I didn't think it was cheesy enough...the bacon was measured because I had 8 slices in the freezer (my trick is to bring home the package of bacon, open it, and roll the bacon slices, stand the rolls up in a tupperware container with a bit of space between, freeze that, and then I can pull out as many or few rolls as I want if I'm too lazy to cook all the bacon and freeze it cooked). But the "glug, glug" taste method works for me, as does the spice/herb in the palm of my hand, taste, add more method.
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Old 07-31-2012, 09:21 PM   #15
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I often share recipes with people who are not foodies. They know and care less about the subject than I do. As a result, I try to be specific and detailed so my recipes are useful.

If you have been following the "Grandmother's Recipes" thread, you see what happens when recipes you write for yourself end up with others and there is difficulty in understanding.
Following it...I'm writing it!
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Old 07-31-2012, 09:26 PM   #16
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I've been recently reading a book about 19th century Russia and recipes they used then. The translator/editor went into great length about how units had changed since then, and many of the original recipes are not directly translatable into 21st century units. The units have changed so much since then that in modern times we are uncertain even in attempting to recreate the recipes, and whether we would be tasting the same recipe they used back then.

For example, mead. IMO there is no way you could reproduce that recipe in modern times because the units of the original book (in Russian) are no longer used. Even the author made little attempt to translate recipes beyond commenting much the same as I have, that the recipes do not translate to modern times. (This is not a cookbook. It's a history book about what cooking was like a few centuries ago.)
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Old 07-31-2012, 09:29 PM   #17
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I've been recently reading a book about 19th century Russia and recipes they used then. The translator/editor went into great length about how units had changed since then, and many of the original recipes are not directly translatable into 21st century units. The units have changed so much since then that in modern times we are uncertain even in attempting to recreate the recipes, and whether we would be tasting the same recipe they used back then.

For example, mead. IMO there is no way you could reproduce that recipe in modern times because the units of the original book (in Russian) are no longer used. Even the author made little attempt to translate recipes beyond commenting much the same as I have, that the recipes do not translate to modern times. (This is not a cookbook. It's a history book about what cooking was like a few centuries ago.)
A friend of mine from Greece made the most amazing honey cookies at Easter time...she used shot glasses, demi-tasse cups, etc. to measure. We spent an afternoon making those and converting all the measurements to NA measurements so I could make the cookies...s/thing I have not done. We lost touch...but then, I found her on the Internet, and we are connected on FB and she lives in WA now so she now makes recipes using NA measurements and has since "re-shared" several of the recipes she gave me when we were in grad school together.
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Old 07-31-2012, 09:30 PM   #18
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I weighed the chard because I was doubling the recipe to make two tarts and the recipe was for one and I didn't purchase the chard, I picked it, so had no idea how much I really had.
In fact that's as good a measure as any, perhaps better than some or all (weight). I've often referred to a "packed" volumetric measure, perhaps of herbs, but who's to say how packed it is? Can this recipe be reproduced by somebody else who packs their herbs differently? (No.)
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Old 07-31-2012, 09:36 PM   #19
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A friend of mine from Greece made the most amazing honey cookies at Easter time...she used shot glasses, demi-tasse cups, etc. to measure. We spent an afternoon making those and converting all the measurements to NA measurements so I could make the cookies...
This makes a good argument for the cooking theory book Ratio. In it the author makes the point that it is not the measurements themselves that are important, but rather are the ratio between the units. The author explores to some degree the relationship between volume units and weight units. It is clear that baking should always use weight units.
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Old 07-31-2012, 09:37 PM   #20
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In fact that's as good a measure as any, perhaps better than some or all (weight). I've often referred to a "packed" volumetric measure, perhaps of herbs, but who's to say how packed it is? Can this recipe be reproduced by somebody else who packs their herbs differently? (No.)
The recipe had 750 g as the amount, but didn't say if that was before or after the ribs were removed...an error in the instructions! So, I weighed it after I had removed the ribs. I have reproduced the recipe for a single tart several times, so was confident I could double it, but yes, you're right. It would have helped if the instructions stated if the weight needed was before or after one removed the ribs.
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