OT: Stuff you didn’t know you needed

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The general consensus is you use a wine good enough to drink, but not necessarily the one you will be drinking. I did use the same this time, mostly because it's what I had on hand. But sometimes I use vermouth, especially dry vermouth in a scampi-esque recipe. A trick I picked up from Serious Eats at some point.

I'm generally of the camp that you usually can't tell the quality when mixed with intense concentrated beef flavors. Unless it's that crappy a wine. I've done a lot of blind tasting in my day, and basically no one is good enough to taste the difference blind. Although you might be psychologically biased if you DO know that's in there.
Got it.. Wife has fun with nice steak cuts in the cast iron skillet.. Working between the stove top and the oven.. An old Emeril trick.. Timing everything precisely..Pretty tasty..

What kind of wine did you match with those flavors?? Last question..
 

87Xfer

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I just used my 3 favorite things together the other day.

I made bone-in short ribs from Whole Foods sous vide. 136 degrees for 48 hours. When done, I poured out the juices and then resealed the bags and put in fridge for next day. I boiled the juices to skim the gunk and then put the remainder in the fridge to make the jus later.

The next day, I cooked the polenta and broccoli sides, and then pre-heated my cast iron skillet. Added the short ribs to sear. I checked their temperature with my thermapop thermometer. Since these came from the fridge and were bone in, they seared much quicker than they re-heated. So I popped them into the oven that had already been used to roast my broccoli. Meanwhile, I simmered the short ribs juices, deglazed the skillet with wine, added it to the juices, and added butter, garlic, and seasoning when off the heat. Used the thermometer a couple more times to take out the ribs when they were between 120 and 130.

All in all, took an hour (most of the time waiting for the polenta to cook) plus 15 minutes combined the day before and 2 days before that. The ingredients were dead simple: corn grits, short ribs, salt, pepper, chicken stock, canola oil, butter, olive oil, garlic, broccoli, and red wine. 9 pantry staples plus a protein and broccoli. It's an exceedingly common menu item at restaurants. It was a weeknight, my wife was putting the kid to bed, and I was watching the Depaul game and in the chat room while cooking.

It was maybe the best thing I've ever eaten. I've traveled the globe and eaten at more Michelin restaurants than I have fingers and toes. Pre-pandemic and kid my wife and I used to travel and hit all the Eater Essential restaurants in New England. I made a prime grade prime rib that cost $150 and caused my father in-law to go silent at the dinner table on Christmas Day. And this $20 multi-tasked weeknight meal was magnitudes better. The combined power of an immersion circualator, cast iron skillet, and thermometer.
Wow, 48 hours in the sous vide bath? I've never tried anything for nearly that long. May have to give it a shot. Do you think something shorter like 24 hrs would have yielded a much different result?
 

nomar

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Really? I've avoided them thinking they may be a gimmick. I need another kitchen appliance thing like a hole in the head.

I think there's a thread on air fryers.

I got one probably 6-7 years ago. It's fantastic.

Aside from using it on frozen food, it's really great for reheating stuff leftover food that was baked or fried. Your choices are usually microwaving (soggy) or baking (takes forever). Pop it in the air fryer for 5 minutes and it's like you just made it.

It's also good for veggies (broccoli, brussels sprouts) -- gets 'em nice and crispy.

I use it probably 3x a week or more.
 
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I think there's a thread on air fryers.

I got one probably 6-7 years ago. It's fantastic.

Aside from using it on frozen food, it's really great for reheating stuff leftover food that was baked or fried. Your choices are usually microwaving (soggy) or baking (takes forever). Pop it in the air fryer for 5 minutes and it's like you just made it.

It's also good for veggies (broccoli, brussels sprouts) -- gets 'em nice and crispy.

I use it probably 3x a week or more.
Add me to airfryer fans. It has revolutionized the home bagel for me. Wet, put in airfryer for 5-6 minutes at 400 degrees and the bagel comes out as if just out of the oven at the bakery. Game changer.
Kids use it a ton for chicken, fries, etc..
 
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Got it.. Wife has fun with nice steak cuts in the skillet.. Working between the stove top and the oven.. An old Emeril trick.. Timing everything precisely..Pretty tasty..

What kind of wine did you match with those flavors?? Last question..
It was a pretty good pinot noir from Oregon. $25 bottle that I get for mid teens by the case buying wholesale and is our "house wine" as it were. There's a lot of rich rendered fat, butter, oil and salt from multiple components in the dish that the acidity of the wine helps cut through, and the fruitiness adds another element and enhances the sweetness in the beef. But those things will be true for most red wines and I wasn't looking to highlight any particular flavor this go around. It was a random weeknight meal after all.
Wow, 48 hours in the sous vide bath? I've never tried anything for nearly that long. May have to give it a shot. Do you think something shorter like 24 hrs would have yielded a much different result?
Since the short ribs have so much fat, you want it to render completely. And since it was low tempish (136 vs. something like 165), you need a much longer time period (it's an exponential curve, not linear). You could do it at higher temp in 24 hours, but then you lose more moisture and texture of medium rare and it'll end up more like a braise. I've done it at 36 hours also, but this time at 48 was so good I'm going to do it the same way every time going forward. 24 hours would've rendered a lot of the fat, but not all of it. Only concern for that timeframe at that 136 temp is surface lactobacilus, so I boil water in a pot and dunk the sealed meat in the bag for 1 minute to kill surface bacteria before putting in the real water bath. Lacto isn't harmful, but it does smell awful if you accidentally cultivate some.
 
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It was a pretty good pinot noir from Oregon. $25 bottle that I get for mid teens by the case buying wholesale and is our "house wine" as it were. There's a lot of rich rendered fat, butter, oil and salt from multiple components in the dish that the acidity of the wine helps cut through, and the fruitiness adds another element and enhances the sweetness in the beef. But those things will be true for most red wines and I wasn't looking to highlight any particular flavor this go around. It was a random weeknight meal after all.

Since the short ribs have so much fat, you want it to render completely. And since it was low tempish (136 vs. something like 165), you need a much longer time period (it's an exponential curve, not linear). You could do it at higher temp in 24 hours, but then you lose more moisture and texture of medium rare and it'll end up more like a braise. I've done it at 36 hours also, but this time at 48 was so good I'm going to do it the same way every time going forward. 24 hours would've rendered a lot of the fat, but not all of it. Only concern for that timeframe at that 136 temp is surface lactobacilus, so I boil water in a pot and dunk the sealed meat in the bag for 1 minute to kill surface bacteria before putting in the real water bath. Lacto isn't harmful, but it does smell awful if you accidentally cultivate some.
Ok.. I was right.. Telling the truth.. Would fun to connect over a glass some day..Original To Kalon vineyard(pre-Beckstoffer) in family background..
 
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HuskyHawk

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I think there's a thread on air fryers.

I got one probably 6-7 years ago. It's fantastic.

Aside from using it on frozen food, it's really great for reheating stuff leftover food that was baked or fried. Your choices are usually microwaving (soggy) or baking (takes forever). Pop it in the air fryer for 5 minutes and it's like you just made it.

It's also good for veggies (broccoli, brussels sprouts) -- gets 'em nice and crispy.

I use it probably 3x a week or more.

I agree on the reheating. This is the main use for me. I'll add, even take out French fries, often soggy by the time they get to your house, are freshened up nicely.

Adding another use, frozen appetizers, whether pigs in blankets, mini quiche or totinos pizza bites, whatever all come out much better in the air fryer than the oven. And faster. Not a common use case, but for taking to parties or whatever the thing delivers.
 

Chin Diesel

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I think there's a thread on air fryers.

I got one probably 6-7 years ago. It's fantastic.

Aside from using it on frozen food, it's really great for reheating stuff leftover food that was baked or fried. Your choices are usually microwaving (soggy) or baking (takes forever). Pop it in the air fryer for 5 minutes and it's like you just made it.

It's also good for veggies (broccoli, brussels sprouts) -- gets 'em nice and crispy.

I use it probably 3x a week or more.

Absolutely great for roasting vegetables.

And you nailed it on the reheat. May be it's best feature compared to other cooking methods.

Add me to airfryer fans. It has revolutionized the home bagel for me. Wet, put in airfryer for 5-6 minutes at 400 degrees and the bagel comes out as if just out of the oven at the bakery. Game changer.
Kids use it a ton for chicken, fries, etc..

13-14 minutes for these. Toss 'em in some wing sauce when they come out and it's a perfect snack for game watching.

1610573274812.png
 

QDOG5

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I got a large bag of Fritos as a gift. Inside the bag I found a Bandito eraser. Fits perfectly on the end of pencil and erases really well when I make mistakes on my boneyard posts. I write my posts out with paper and pencil so I don't waste computer ink.
 
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What about seasoning with coconut oil, with an apparently even higher flash point? That’s what my girl is considering to season the skillet I just got her
Her answer not mine.. Because iron skillets are made of somewhat porous metal.. The oil you use to season the skillet might occasionally "bleed" through the next time you use it for cooking... So.. If you're generally okay with the potential for a "hint" of coconut.. No problem.. Her opinion is that the flash point for residual coconut oil (through the seasoning process) should not be a problem on your next meal..

FWIW..We're big fans of coconut oil for other stuff.. Enjoy your skillet..They're a lot of fun as discussed today..
 

nomar

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Add me to airfryer fans. It has revolutionized the home bagel for me. Wet, put in airfryer for 5-6 minutes at 400 degrees and the bagel comes out as if just out of the oven at the bakery. Game changer.
Kids use it a ton for chicken, fries, etc..

Had not thought of that

 

CL82

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What about seasoning with coconut oil, with an apparently even higher flash point? That’s what my girl is considering to season the skillet I just got her
She's better off with corn oil or vegetable oil ( or canola). Coconut oil has a relatively low smoke point.
 

storrsroars

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I agree on the reheating. This is the main use for me. I'll add, even take out French fries, often soggy by the time they get to your house, are freshened up nicely.

Adding another use, frozen appetizers, whether pigs in blankets, mini quiche or totinos pizza bites, whatever all come out much better in the air fryer than the oven. And faster. Not a common use case, but for taking to parties or whatever the thing delivers.
All those leftover fries from your Five Guys order... still good 2-3 days later with an air fryer. I don't own a separate one, it's simply a function of my countertop oven, which sees 90% of the oven cooking in our kitchen these days.

I did a frozen TJ's spanokapita today. Also reheats and crisps up egg rolls and anything with a flaky-ish crust w/o making it soggy.
 

Chin Diesel

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I am not the chef in the house but I spoke to her about her cast iron skillets.. She has 5 or 6.. ..2 of which are going on 75 years of age ( her Grandmother's favorites).. And continues to use on a weekly basis..

Her advice.. After usuage and after cleaning/drying..Use vegetable oil to season vs olive oil ..Olive oil has a high flash point and when used on subsequent meals could affect the quality of your results.. Since skillets tend to need a fair amount of heat.. Part of the calculus.

She never cleans the skillets with soap after a meal.. ..Always with hot water and a good scrubbing..

Using soap on a cast iron skillet will get you written out of wills.

Never needs anything more than a clean water wash and scub and, as others have mentioned, canola/corn/vegetable oil.
 

Chin Diesel

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I brought this up a few years ago in another thread.

Want Need another tool for you tool box. This thing does just about everything you need for banging, ripping and tearing apart.

Totally ANNIHILATES whatever it is you are tearing apart.

I heard somewhere they may be using a lesser grade metal but they still have enough heft. Mine's about 10 years old and does the job whenever I've need it.

DEAD ON TOOLS Annihilator 18 in. Wrecking and Utility Bar-AN18 - The Home Depot

1610580033068.png
 

87Xfer

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Using soap on a cast iron skillet will get you written out of wills.

Never needs anything more than a clean water wash and scub and, as others have mentioned, canola/corn/vegetable oil.
and if there's any stuck-on crud that's bothering you, you can often get it off by dumping some relatively coarse salt into the (dry) pan and scouring with a paper towel
 

87Xfer

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It was a pretty good pinot noir from Oregon. $25 bottle that I get for mid teens by the case buying wholesale and is our "house wine" as it were. There's a lot of rich rendered fat, butter, oil and salt from multiple components in the dish that the acidity of the wine helps cut through, and the fruitiness adds another element and enhances the sweetness in the beef. But those things will be true for most red wines and I wasn't looking to highlight any particular flavor this go around. It was a random weeknight meal after all.

Since the short ribs have so much fat, you want it to render completely. And since it was low tempish (136 vs. something like 165), you need a much longer time period (it's an exponential curve, not linear). You could do it at higher temp in 24 hours, but then you lose more moisture and texture of medium rare and it'll end up more like a braise. I've done it at 36 hours also, but this time at 48 was so good I'm going to do it the same way every time going forward. 24 hours would've rendered a lot of the fat, but not all of it. Only concern for that timeframe at that 136 temp is surface lactobacilus, so I boil water in a pot and dunk the sealed meat in the bag for 1 minute to kill surface bacteria before putting in the real water bath. Lacto isn't harmful, but it does smell awful if you accidentally cultivate some.
alright, i'm trying this in the next couple of weeks. what temp did you use to finish the ribs in the oven in the cast iron? i won't clog up this thread any more, but pm me if you're interested in a really flavorful, slightly spicy braised short rib recipe that's been a winner for us for years. and thanks!
 

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