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Old 10-06-2005, 12:07 AM   #11
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Did anyone here ever see the episode of Chef where someone did this wanting to "reseason" the dish without ever tasting it? One of my favorite episodes!

The number, and amounts, of herbs/spices are usually to achieve a certain balance of flavors. It's like a culinary "symphony" - you cut the number of herbs/spices and instead of a symphony you get a 2-man band - you get the melody but not the full effect. Ignore the amounts and just use the same amount for everything - maybe too many in the brass section to hear the violin section, too many in the violin and not enough in the viola section .... etc.

Of course, if you don't want to follow the recipe ... you can always make sure there is plenty of salt, pepper, hot sauce and extra condiments on the table.
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Old 10-06-2005, 12:17 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael in FtW
Did anyone here ever see the episode of Chef where someone did this wanting to "reseason" the dish without ever tasting it? One of my favorite episodes!

The number, and amounts, of herbs/spices are usually to achieve a certain balance of flavors. It's like a culinary "symphony" - you cut the number of herbs/spices and instead of a symphony you get a 2-man band - you get the melody but not the full effect. Ignore the amounts and just use the same amount for everything - maybe too many in the brass section to hear the violin section, too many in the violin and not enough in the viola section .... etc.

Of course, if you don't want to follow the recipe ... you can always make sure there is plenty of salt, pepper, hot sauce and extra condiments on the table.
Can I have the salt?

I was tring to say just that...bravo!
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Old 10-06-2005, 09:37 AM   #13
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Michaels symphony analogy is right on in my opinion. I would never judge a recipe based on numbers. A recipe should be judged on taste. Just because there are a lot of ingredients does not make it bad. they are there for a reason in most cases. Now if you try it and think some of them are not needed then you have made an informed decision and can probably tweak the recipe to better fit your own palate. i have some recipes that have tons and tons of spices. I have played around with them and sometimes when leaving a few out the end result in not changed, but other times you end up missing that little something that makes people say "what is that flavor. I can't quite figure it out, but I really like it".

As far as people who reach for the salt or condiments before tasting food I have cooked, it drives me crazy. I would never say anything to someone 9other than my wife if she did it), but inside I am yelling. At least taste it first to see if it needs it. If you then decide that it needs something then feel free to alter it however you want to suit your needs. I don't care if that means you pour ketchup all over the steak I just made you if that is going to please your palate, just taste it first to see if you need it.
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Old 10-06-2005, 09:40 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KAYLINDA
My pet peeve isn't so much the number of spices...but rather the amounts. 1/4 teaspoon of this...1/2 of that...3/4 of that...I make 'em all 1/2 teaspoon or whatever comes close...and call the recipe mine....lol.
me too~!! Ok.. I never really measure spice. I just start with a small amount and add more if I think it needs it.

By the way... why does any recipe say ONE clove of garlic??
ONE clove is never ever even close to be enough!!
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Old 10-06-2005, 09:48 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by pdswife
I never really measure spice.
Me either. All spices just get poured into my palm and then into the food. I pour it into my palm first so that I do not accidentally
pour way too much into the pot. I guess at the amounts. If it calls for a quarter teaspoon then I use just a little. If it calls for 2 tablespoons then I use a lot.
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Old 10-06-2005, 09:52 AM   #16
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Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by GB
Me either. All spices just get poured into my palm and then into the food. I pour it into my palm first so that I do not accidentally
pour way too much into the pot. I guess at the amounts. If it calls for a quarter teaspoon then I use just a little. If it calls for 2 tablespoons then I use a lot.
OH GOOD! I'm glad I'm not alone.
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Old 10-06-2005, 09:55 AM   #17
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Old 10-06-2005, 10:12 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mish
When reading a recipe I would like to try, and I see half dozen or more herbs and spices, I'm turned off - i.e. overkill. For me, I would like to taste the food, and perhaps 3 herbs/spices is enough to enhance the flavor. (The exception might be in a rub or certain cuisines, i.e. Indian perhaps?) When I prepare a dish and someone sits down to eat, & without tasting the dish reaches for salt, pepper, hot sauce and extra condiments, I feel my cooking effort is lost. I prefer the taste of the food.

Anyone relate?
I am totally with you about what you say here Mish. That's why I never liked Emeril Lagasse, he always complicate the recipes, loading with so many different ingredients, way more than necessary for appearantly no good reason. I get the impression that when they load the recipe with seasoning and condiments, it is to disguise the not-so-good/fresh ingredients... I really learned the art of simpler cooking after coming to Italy, and found out it is so much nicer when you choose a quality, fresh ingredients and enjoy the bursting flavour of each items... in cooking, more often than you think, less is more!!
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Old 10-06-2005, 10:15 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GB
As far as people who reach for the salt or condiments before tasting food I have cooked, it drives me crazy. At least taste it first to see if it needs it. Just taste it first to see if you need it.
Glad someone can relate, GB.

Besides the condiments, EXTRAS like cheese and garlic piled onto a "finely-tuned" dish bugs me. Example: If two cloves of garlic (or garlic salt) is good, four would be even better. (Same with cheese.) I silently think, GET A PIZZA.

Back to the spices. I have so many jars/bottles of spices I've used perhaps once or twice for a recipe, and the rest get stale and sit for a year in the pantry. Some I haven't even touched. (Hey, it was on sale, & I might need it someday ) The ones I use frequently, I'm always replacing (rosemary, basil, parsley, sage, paprika, etc.). Wouldn't it be nice, if we could find all the spices in small, med and large sizes - cornstarch too? (I've noticed the prices creeping up.)

Well that's my spicey opinion
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Old 10-06-2005, 10:25 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by urmaniac13
I am totally with you about what you say here Mish. That's why I never liked Emeril Lagasse, he always complicate the recipes, loading with so many different ingredients, way more than necessary for appearantly no good reason. I get the impression that when they load the recipe with seasoning and condiments, it is to disguise the not-so-good/fresh ingredients... I really learned the art of simpler cooking after coming to Italy, and found out it is so much nicer when you choose a quality, fresh ingredients and enjoy the bursting flavour of each items... in cooking, more often than you think, less is more!!
My sentiments precisely, urmaniac.

I have a bottle of ketchup sitting in the fridge for 'bout 4 months. I only use it, pretty much on fries, burgers, and I like it on steak too, Texas (and a little A-1 or Lea & Perrins (sp) once in a while). And Mayo - for me, a little does the trick.
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