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Old 07-17-2007, 08:56 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M.

GB, how does anyone know RR is saying the exact measurement doesn't matter unless she states that in the recipe?
She states it quite often Andy. She probably says it once every couple of shows. I don't feel like digging my one RR cookbook out right now, but I would be willing to bet that she says something about it in the preface as well.

Not to mention that this is true of most cooking recipes, not just RR recipes. In most cases if you use a little extra of this or a little less than that then you will still have a successful recipe. I hardly ever measure anything when cooking and I would call myself a pretty decent cook. I can promise that when I am following a recipe though, it is never exactly the amounts that were written down.
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Old 07-17-2007, 09:11 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by auntdot

But I believe most recipes should be very specific and then give variations as lagniappe, but not to confuse the reader.
I had to look up "lagniappe", auntdot! GREAT word!

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Old 07-17-2007, 09:21 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QSis
I had to look up "lagniappe", auntdot! GREAT word!

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Hi, Lee. Here's Webster's definition. Ain't it great?
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Old 07-17-2007, 10:42 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GB
She states it quite often Andy. She probably says it once every couple of shows. I don't feel like digging my one RR cookbook out right now, but I would be willing to bet that she says something about it in the preface as well.

Not to mention that this is true of most cooking recipes, not just RR recipes. In most cases if you use a little extra of this or a little less than that then you will still have a successful recipe. I hardly ever measure anything when cooking and I would call myself a pretty decent cook. I can promise that when I am following a recipe though, it is never exactly the amounts that were written down.

It's not you or I who will have an issue with RR's type of recipe. It's the beginner. Someone who knows so little about cooking that they are afraid to guess and don't know enough to wing it.

I have a daughter who, while quite intelligent, has no cooking experience and hasn't learned to deal with such uncertainties. I often get calls about what does this mean and can I do this instead of that. She tasted a new potato salad recipe of mine a while ago and started asking, "Can I use celery instead of cukes?", "Can I leave out the bacon?" Do I have to use red potatoes?" Obvious to you and me but not to everyone. RR presents her cooking as not gourmet, but easy and quick. This is attractive to novice cooks. Her recipes have to take that into consideration.

My point is that an imprecise recipe excludes or is not usable by some cooks, while a precise recipe is usable by all. Some will measure every ingredient exactly as the precise recipe says while others will "eyeball" it or change the amount.

As to your other point. RR has to address the flexibility of amounts on every recipe. If you go to food network for a recipe, you don't have access to that part of a cookbook where she says it's OK to estimate.
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:09 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M.
It's not you or I who will have an issue with RR's type of recipe. It's the beginner. Someone who knows so little about cooking that they are afraid to guess and don't know enough to wing it.
Which is exactly why she tries to teach people how to wing it. She will tell you that the recipe calls for 2 tablespoons of oil, or twice around the pan.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M.
As to your other point. RR has to address the flexibility of amounts on every recipe. If you go to food network for a recipe, you don't have access to that part of a cookbook where she says it's OK to estimate.
If you go to food network and look at her recipes then you don't have to access that part of her book. The reason being that her recipes are written with actual amounts.
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:18 PM   #26
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Just to give my take on this subject. Whenever I try a new recipe, I do it as the recipe is written the FIRST time. This way I find out what it was meant to taste like. Then, if I feel it needs to be tweaked, for my preferences, I make my adjustments.

The "palm" measurement factor is as varied as there are cooks. I'm a female, but I have very large hands. Therefore, my "palm, pinch, etc." measurement will be very different from someone who has smaller hands.

One of the things that is wonderful about cooking is the ability for all of us to customize and/or change a recipe to suit our taste. Viva la difference!!
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:21 PM   #27
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To get off RR for a moment, I also have a problem with ingredients measured in bunches, such as parsley, scallions, etc.

I'm reminded of a humerous story about a young bride who wanted to impress her new hubby by cooking her great grandmother's recipe for beef stew. IT was a disaster. Tasteless and blah.

The recipe listed the first step as, 'buy 50 cents worth of stew beef'...

My entire point in this thread is, while both precise and imprecise recipes can result in excellent dishes, only precise recipes are assured of being completely understandable to all.
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:23 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie E
Just to give my take on this subject. Whenever I try a new recipe, I do it as the recipe is written the FIRST time. This way I find out what it was meant to taste like. Then, if I feel it needs to be tweaked, for my preferences, I make my adjustments...
That's what I do as well, Katie.
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:28 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M.
only precise recipes are assured of being completely understandable to all.
If that were really true then we would have a heck of a lot less posts on this website.
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:42 PM   #30
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On the contrary, we often get questions about how to interpret confusing (imprecise) recipes. I remember one member asking what RR meant when she said to 'eyeball it'.

If the recipe had said 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil (it's OK to exstimate this amount), it may have been clearer.
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