So I’ve been reading The Kitchen Counter Cooking School by Kathleen Flinn which has inspired several changes in my kitchen. First I’ve decided not to buy salad dressing anymore. I found recipes for all but one that my family eats and well someone else can buy French/Catalina dressing if they really want it. Second I cut up a whole chicken today. It wasn’t quite as funny as the duck or lobster scene in Julie & Julia but I did wash my hands repeatedly so I could refer back to the Youtube video from Gourmet magazine. I now have parts of a chicken in my fridge ready to roast later this week. The part of the book that I adore is the taste tests conducted before or after the cooking demos during the class. The first one in the book was salt, I don’t want to test salt but I do want to figure out which pantry staples I really do like as opposed to the ones I buy out of habit. Last week I tested vegetable stock. My local grocery store only carries 2 brands and I was making a stew and a soup so it was easy. I can say that Kitchen Basics is the brand for me. Today was different, Adrienne & I tried crushed tomatoes:
I bought every brand & variety available at the two major local stores.
Cento had a bright tomato flavor and no additives.
Second place went to:
We detected salt in this one but it still had a nice tomato taste. Our local grocery store, Wegman’s also had decent crushed tomatoes in a variety of flavors. There were 2 brands that didn’t make the cut into the sauce pot, one was “fire roasted” which meant burned to our taste buds, the other had a strong oregano flavor which made sense because it is an Italian herb but it’s not the only Italian herb.
I used my vanilla beans today too but more on that another day this amateur domestic goddess is exhausted and needs rest before work tomorrow.