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Do Macarons Need to Be Refrigerated? A Guide

do macarons need to be refrigerated

Macarons are an irresistible treat, traditionally served as a dessert. When expertly made, they should melt in your mouth, leaving your tastebuds begging for more. You will seldom have leftovers, but if you do, how do you store them? Do macarons need to be refrigerated?

Like many other exotic and tantalizing dishes, macarons originated in France where the French are renowned for their cuisine and expertise at producing gastronomic delights. A professional French chef or baker will have endless patience to fiddle and fuss, in order to get the perfect result.

Does this mean that you cannot make macarons in your kitchen at home? Of course not! Making macarons can be a little tricky at first, and your first few attempts might not yield the perfect macaron, but with a little practice, they are actually quite easy to make.

There are a few secrets to making macarons, and later on, in this article, I will share some of my best tips with you. Many people don’t like giving out their best recipes and can be quite possessive about it. I, on the other hand, always see it as the ultimate compliment when someone asks me for a recipe. 

Friends and family always rave about my macarons and ask for my recipe. I have given it to so many people that I have decided to share it with you here as well, so that you, too, can master this wonderful French confection. Once you have mastered it, you will never have to ask if macarons need to be refrigerated, because you will never have leftovers to worry about.

Of course, if you are making your macarons for a special occasion and you are the type of person who likes to be well-organized and prepares things well in advance, you may need to ask, “Do macarons need to be refrigerated?” But then you run the risk of those yummy little goodies being guzzled on the sly before your guests even arrive. 

 

How Long Do Macarons Last?

Do macarons need to be refrigerated? Not necessarily. They can be stored at room temperature for 2-3 days. Store them in an airtight container, and make sure that they are in a cool place, out of direct sunlight. Longer than 2-3 days, yes, macarons do need to be refrigerated. Macarons will keep in the fridge for up to a week, as long as they are packed correctly.

 TIP: Macarons can be stacked in layers, but it is essential to place a piece of parchment paper between the layers to separate them, otherwise they may stick to each other and their delicate surface could be damaged. Place them in a completely sealed air-tight container in the fridge, and they should still be good a week later. That is if you have managed to resist the urge to eat them!

If you are having guests and you are serving macarons, but want to be well-prepared in advance, here is another very handy TIP: Make your macaron shells and filling a day or two before, but do not put them together. 

Store the shells and the filling in separate air-tight containers. While the macarons themselves do not need to be refrigerated at this stage, the filling does. Take the filling out of the fridge, an hour in advance, to warm to room temperature, and assemble the macarons at the last minute before your guests arrive. They will be perfect in appearance and taste like they have been freshly made.

 

Can You Freeze and Refreeze Macarons?

Yes, you can freeze them. Macarons will last for up to 3 months in the freezer. Here, also, if preparing ahead of time, I would recommend freezing the shells and the filling separately, and then assembling them when needed. But if this is not convenient, whole macarons can certainly be frozen. Again, you will need to separate them with parchment paper and pack them in a fully air-tight container. If air seeps in, they will go soggy and will not be appetizing. 

If you have frozen your macarons once and then defrosted them, I do not recommend refreezing them. This really applies to all foods that have been frozen. Once food has been thawed, it is not safe to refreeze it, because bacteria can start to multiply as it thaws. 

Macarons that have been thawed once will still be fine to eat and will retain their taste and texture, but freezing and defrosting them a second time will seriously affect the consistency and flavor. They will start to acquire freezer taste; you know, that subtle, off-ish taste that some foods develop when they have spent too long stored, hidden, and forgotten in the depths of your bulging freezer.

 

How Do You Defrost Frozen Macarons?

It is best to take them out of the freezer the night before you need them and place them in the fridge to defrost gradually. Too sudden a change in temperature could affect the texture of the macaron shells, and make the filling too soft. Never defrost macarons in the microwave. They will go soggy and be completely ruined.

 

Can You Crisp Up Macarons If They Go Soft in the Freezer?

If you have frozen your macaron shells and they are too soft after defrosting, you can place them in a warm oven on a low temperature for about 10 minutes, then allow them to cool completely before filling them. They should then be nice and firm. However, this will not work with macarons that have already been filled. 

The filling cannot be heated. It might curdle and separate if heated. It will also probably melt and turn to liquid, ruining your macaron shells.

 

What do Macarons Look Like?

Macarons should be light and fluffy. The outside should be crispy, while the inside should be softer and slightly chewy. They should have a dome-shaped, smooth outer surface, with little bubbles that burst through on the inner surface. These little bubbles are known as ‘feet’.

A complete macaron consists of two shells, sandwiched together with a cream filling. You can leave them their natural color, which is a pale off-white creamy shade, or you can color them with food coloring. 

 

How Do You Make Macarons?

I have experimented with quite a few different recipes and methods, but, through trial and error, I eventually hit on the perfect recipe. The ingredients for macaron shells are very simple. You need egg whites, granulated sugar, powdered sugar, almond flour and food coloring. But it is what you do with those simple ingredients that make all the difference.

TIP: If you usually store your eggs in the fridge, start off by taking them out of the fridge well in advance. Your egg whites must be at room temperature when you beat them, in order to get the best result.

Here is my special recipe for macarons.

You will need the following utensils:

  • Mixer with a whisk beater
  • Food processor
  • Sieve
  • Large bowl
  • Spatula
  • Baking tray
  • Parchment or baking paper
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Piping bag
  • Wire cooling rack

 

INGREDIENTS

Macaron shells

  • 3 egg whites at room temperature
  • 1 ¾ cups powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup fine almond flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt 
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2-3 drops food coloring

METHOD

  • Preheat your oven to 300° Fahrenheit and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  • Combine the almond flour with the powdered sugar and salt. Process to a very fine powder in the food processor and sift into a bowl. 
  • In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until you have soft peaks, slowly adding the granulated sugar. Continue beating until you have firm peaks. 

TIP: You should be able to turn the bowl upside down and the egg whites will stay put.

  • Add the vanilla and beat in. Add the food coloring and beat for another few seconds. 

TIP: to prevent accidentally splashing in too much food coloring, use an eye-dropper.

  • Fold in the almond flour mixture very gradually, using a spatula. Continue folding until it is smooth and glossy.
  • Place the mixture in a piping bag and pipe circles onto the parchment paper. Your macarons should be 1½ inches in diameter. Place them 2 inches apart to allow for spreading.
  • Leave them to stand for 1 hour, then bake at 300° for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool on the wire rack.
  • Fill with cream filling when completely cool.

Vanilla Buttercream Filling

  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cream the butter, gradually adding the powdered sugar. Add the cream and vanilla extract, beating well until you have a soft, creamy texture. 

Using a piping bag, place a blob in the center of a macaron shell, and sandwich together with a second shell. 

 

You now have perfect, mouth-watering macaroons. Leave them to settle for a few hours, and invite your friends for a party!

How Long Can Fried Chicken Stay Out

how long can fried chicken stay out

 

Piping-hot, crispy fried chicken is one of my all-time favorite dishes. Who doesn’t love tucking into those mouth-watering drumsticks coated in crunchy batter or those spicy wings that leave your taste buds tingling and begging for more? Whether you cook it yourself or buy it from your local takeout place, you have probably asked, ‘How long can fried chicken stay out?’

There are many ways to cook chicken pieces, but frying them in hot oil is probably one of the most popular. Fried chicken is chicken that has been coated in egg and flour, seasoned with your favorite spices, and deep-fried in hot oil. Many people also like coating their chicken pieces in breadcrumbs or crushed cornflakes to make them extra crispy.

Chicken has the potential to go off fairly quickly, so it is important to know how long your fried chicken can stay out of the fridge while remaining safe to eat. 

Of course, the best time to eat fried chicken is straight out of the pan, when it has just been cooked. This is when it will be at its freshest and most appetizing. That aroma coming from the kitchen, and the sound of the chicken sizzling in the pan, will be utterly tantalizing and irresistible. But it may not always be possible to eat it straight away.

 

How Long Can Fried Chicken Stay Out the Fridge?

How long fried chicken can stay out of the fridge depends on a few factors, but the most important of these is the indoor temperature. Generally, in temperatures up to 85° Fahrenheit, it is safe to leave the fried chicken out for up to 2 hours. However, if it is any warmer than 85°, it should either be eaten immediately or placed in the fridge within 1 hour. 

 

Why Shouldn’t Fried Chicken Be Left Out For Too Long?

 

Chicken can go bad much more quickly than other meats. This is because bacteria in food multiply much faster in moist foods. Chicken has a higher water content than other meats, and food-borne bacteria will thrive in the moisture of the chicken flesh. 

Microorganisms like Salmonella, e-Coli, and Campylobacter multiply very quickly in protein-based, moist foods. So your delicious fried chicken is the perfect environment for them to grow.

 

How Long Can Fried Chicken Keep in the Fridge?

Fried chicken can keep for 3-4 days in the fridge. It is best to store your fried chicken on the top shelf of your fridge. Do not place it anywhere near any raw meat or chicken. 

Raw meat and chicken all contain certain elements and bacteria. These will still be safe to eat after they have been cooked because these bacteria will be killed by high temperatures. However, bacteria are easily transferable, even in the fridge, and your fried chicken may become contaminated if it comes into contact with raw meat or chicken.

 

How Should You Store Fried Chicken?

Fried chicken will last longer if it is stored in a sealed, airtight container, or in sealed ziplock bags. Do not seal the bags or containers while the chicken is still hot. The steam must be allowed to escape and the chicken should only be slightly warm when sealing.

If using bags, try to release as much air as possible from the bags before sealing. It is a good idea to divide the chicken into smaller portions, in order to help it to cool down more quickly. Also, try to separate pieces by placing cling wrap between them. This will prevent the pieces from sticking together and ruining the coating. 

 

Can You Freeze Fried Chicken?

The good news is that fried chicken freezes very successfully. Because it is such a popular dish in my house, I usually cook a large batch at a time and freeze the extra pieces. This kind of planning helps with time management and can simplify your life. It is so convenient to have a scrumptious meal in the freezer for those days when you know that you won’t have time to cook.

 

How Do You Thaw Fried Chicken?

Fried chicken should not be left out to thaw overnight. Bacteria can multiply very quickly and the chicken may go off if left at room temperature for an extended period. Place your frozen fried chicken in the fridge and leave it there to defrost overnight.

If you have forgotten to take it out the night before, and you need to use it urgently, you can defrost the fried chicken in the microwave on the defrost setting, but it may lose some of its flavors and will not be crispy. I suggest leaving it in the microwave only for long enough to defrost it, but not to heat it through.

 

How Do You Reheat Fried Chicken That Has Been Defrosted?

Once the chicken has defrosted completely, either overnight in the fridge, or at the last minute in the microwave, you can reheat it in the oven at about 350° Fahrenheit for 15-20 minutes, depending on how big the pieces are. Bigger pieces will take longer to heat through.

 

How Can You Tell if Fried Chicken Is Off?

Obviously, if you suspect that your fried chicken might have gone bad, you will not want to risk tasting it. Fortunately, it is possible to check if it is off without eating any of it. Here is how:

  • Smell – all chicken, even when it is fresh, has a distinctive smell. However, chicken that has gone off will have a sour, unpleasant odor.
  • Color – Cooked chicken that is fresh and good to eat will be either white or light tan in color, depending on which portions you have. On the other hand, chicken that is bad will start turning a greyish green. If it is seriously off it may even be moldy.
  • Touch – Fresh chicken will be dry to the touch, while chicken that is off will feel slimy.

 

What Will Happen if You Eat Fried Chicken That Has Been Left Out For Too Long?

Eating food that has gone bad can make you severely ill. If the fried chicken has only just started going off, you might only get a mild case of food poisoning. You might have slight stomach cramps and vomit once or twice, and then feel fine a few hours later.

If the fried chicken has been left out for an extended period, and the bacteria have been multiplying furiously, you can get very sick and may even need to be admitted to hospital.

 

What Should You Do If You Get Food Poisoning?

If you were not sure how long fried chicken can stay out, and you inadvertently ate it after it has gone off, you will probably start to feel bad within a couple of hours. If you are not seriously ill, make sure to drink plenty of water, and rest for a few hours. 

If you don’t start to improve, and you are throwing up copiously and have diarrhea, it is time to go to the doctor or emergency room. Vomiting and diarrhea can cause severe dehydration, which is potentially very dangerous. You may need to be treated with medication and be put on a drip to rehydrate your system.

If you are asking how long fried chicken can stay out, you have probably either already made or are planning to make some fried chicken. Be sure to follow safe practices when preparing and storing your fried chicken, and you can enjoy this delicious meal without any worries.

 

How to Thicken Clam Chowder – A Guide

how to thicken clam chowder

The weather is changing, and those chilly nights are getting colder and colder. It is time to start thinking about lovely, thick, heart-warming soups and chowders. I love a steaming bowl of clam chowder, but the consistency has to be just right, so I soon learned how to thicken clam chowder.

It has to be creamy and thick, with chunks of potato, clams, and little pieces of bacon. Basically, a winter one-bowl-wonder meal that will warm you from the depths of your belly and leave you feeling as if you have been wrapped up in a snuggly blanket of coziness.

Chowder is not to be confused with either soup or stew. It is a quite unique combination of the two, taking the best elements of both, and putting them together to come up with a dish that is thicker than soup and not as runny but is not as full of solid chunkiness as your favorite stew might be.

While most soups are stock-based, chowder is made with milk and cream, giving it that scrumptious creamy texture that coats your mouth as you savor the mingling flavors of all the different ingredients.

What Can I Add to My Chowder?

You can add a great variety of things to your chowders, such as haddock, corn, potatoes, bacon bits, lobster, crayfish, and other kinds of seafood. Each of these will add its own individual flavor to your pot. My favorite is clams because they give it a special smack that is unparalleled by any other ingredients. Later on, in this article, I will tell you how I make it and I’ll share my easy-to-make recipe with you.

How Thick Should Chowder Be?

You don’t want your chowder to have a completely liquid consistency, because then it would just be soup. But you also won’t want it to be so thick that it becomes almost solid, like a stew. The trick is to find a fine balance between the two. My personal test is that if you tilt your spoon, it should slide off gently in a blob, rather than running off in a splash.

How to Thicken Clam Chowder

There are numerous methods that you can use to thicken clam chowder. I have tried all of these, and they all produced successful results.

    • Heavy Cream

In order to get that thick, creamy consistency, you should use heavy cream. It will give your chowder a rich, smooth texture.

    • Cornstarch

If you want a really thick chowder, you can add a tablespoon of cornstarch to the cream. Stir it in well so that there are no lumps, and then pour it into the pot very gradually, stirring as you pour. The chowder will thicken as you blend in the cream and cornstarch mixture.

If you have already added the cream, but your chowder is not thick enough and you want to thicken your clam chowder, even more, you can take a little cornstarch and mix it with a tablespoon or two of cold water. Gradually pour this into your pot and you will find that this is an easy and effective way to thicken clam chowder.

    • Flour

If you don’t have cornstarch, you can use the above method with flour instead of cornstarch, but you may need to use a little more to get the same effect.

    • Potatoes

Another way to thicken clam chowder is to add potatoes that have been cut into chunks. The secret here is to use the right kind of potatoes. You get starchy potatoes and waxy potatoes. Avoid waxy potatoes, like the ever-popular Yukon Gold.

You will need to use a starchy potato variety, like the Russet potato. The potato contains starch, which acts as a thickening agent, so it actually works in a similar way to cornstarch, except that the starch is not as concentrated.

Let the potato chunks cook in the chowder, and as they cook the starch is gradually released, thickening the chowder as it simmers. The bonus of this is that the potatoes also bulk up your chowder, turning it into a substantial, hearty, and wholesome meal.

    • Crackers

I have also used another unusual method to thicken clam chowder, using crackers. Choose your favorite crackers and break them up into very small pieces, or crush them with a rolling pin, and stir into your chowder and let it simmer.

The starch in the crackers will cause the chowder to thicken, and also add a lovely flavor to the chowder. A word of caution; if you use salty crackers, you should reduce the amount of salt in the recipe, as the crackers will add salt to the chowder.

    • Instant Mashed Potato

This is a little-known secret that I sometimes use. If you stir in instant mashed potato powder to your chowder, it will thicken beautifully. You just have to be careful not to add too much. If you overdo it, you will land up with chowder that has the gooey consistency of thick porridge.

Read Related Article: How to Thicken Mashed Potatoes – A Quick Guide

How Do You Make Clam Chowder?

Clam chowder is relatively easy to make. It is my go-to dish when I need something hot, filling, and tasty. Over the years I have experimented with numerous recipes, and eventually combined the best elements of all of them to come up with my own fail-safe recipe.

What I love about this recipe is that it is a one-pot dish, and you aren’t left with a kitchen full of dirty pots and pans afterward. These quantities will make approximately 8 servings.

EASY CLAM CHOWDER RECIPE

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cans chopped clams
  • 2 bottles clam juice
  • 2 cups of milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch ( more if needed)
  • ½ cup butter
  • A few pieces of bacon, cut up small
  • 4 – 5 potatoes, cut into cubes
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 – 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 – 3 carrots, chopped
  • Kosher Salt and freshly ground black pepper, according to taste
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon thyme (less if you only want a subtle hint of the flavor)
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • 1 sprig chopped fresh parsley or 2 teaspoons dried parsley

METHOD

In a large soup pot, heat a little of the butter and brown the onion. Add the bacon and garlic and stir-fry for a few minutes. Add the remaining butter, the vegetables, and the seasonings. Cook on low heat for about 10 – 15 minutes, stirring regularly.

Add the milk, clams, and clam juice. Simmer gently until the veggies are cooked through and the potatoes are soft. Stir the cornstarch into the cream until it is completely smooth, with no lumps. Gradually add the cream mixture to the pot, stirring constantly. This is the best method of how to thicken clam chowder. As you blend it in, the chowder should thicken beautifully. Simmer for another 3-4 minutes and remove from the heat.

Can You Freeze Clam Chowder?

If you have leftovers, clam chowder can be frozen without losing any of its creaminess or flavor. In fact, I like to plan ahead and I often double the quantity and freeze one batch.

Freeze the clam chowder in either an airtight container or in ziplock bags. I like to use small ziplock bags, in individual serving sizes. That way I can take out only as much as I need at any time.

On a cold winter’s night, when I arrive home late and don’t have time to cook, it is super-convenient to have a pot of thick, creamy chowder ready to just be heated up. Serve with a fresh bread roll or garlic bread, and you have dinner ready in minutes.

How Long Can I Leave Cooked Chicken Out – A Guide

How Long Can I Leave Cooked Chicken Out

 

Chefs around the world love coming up with new chicken dishes, because chicken is so versatile. There is so much that you can do with it. It is also healthy, rich in protein, low in fat, and quite affordable, making it one of the most popular foods. But if you like chicken and cook it often, you may ask, ‘How long can I leave cooked chicken out?’

The answer to this depends on a few factors. There are many ways to cook chicken, from roasting to grilling to deep-frying, or even cooking in a casserole with veggies in a rich sauce. Many people love chicken cooked in a stir-fry with veggies and Asian sauces. Chicken cooked in a sauce with vegetables is likely to go bad sooner than plain grilled or fried chicken.

However you prefer to cook your chicken, cooked chicken has the potential to go off fairly quickly, so it is important to know how long your cooked chicken can stay out of the fridge and still be safe to eat. 

 

How Long Can I Leave Cooked Chicken Out the Fridge?

In the heat of summer, if the temperature indoors is above 85° Fahrenheit, the maximum length of time that cooked chicken can stay out is about 1 hour. At slightly cooler temperatures, your cooked chicken can stay out for up to 2 hours. Any longer than this and the chicken will start to deteriorate and bacteria will start to multiply.

 

Why Can’t I Leave Cooked Chicken Out For Too Long?

All meat and poultry will go off if left out for too long, but chicken deteriorates at a much faster rate than other meats. Bacteria in food usually thrive and multiply in a moist environment. Chicken is usually soaked in brine and therefore has a higher water content than other meats, making it an ideal breeding ground for food-borne bacteria.

If you leave cooked chicken out for too long, it will most likely become contaminated with nasty bugs like e-Coli, Campylobacter, and Salmonella. 

 

How Long Can I Keep Cooked Chicken in the Fridge?

Cooked chicken will usually remain fresh and safe to eat for 3-4 days if stored correctly in the fridge. Keep it near the top of the fridge, and far away from raw foods like other meat or chicken.

All raw meat, chicken, and fish contain certain levels of bacteria, but these bacteria will not survive the high temperatures used in cooking, making the food safe to eat once it has been cooked. However, even in the cold environment of the fridge, bacteria can circulate and settle on other foods, causing them to go off. 

 

What Is The Best Way To Store Cooked Chicken?

The best way to store your cooked chicken depends on how it has been cooked. Fried chicken pieces should be divided into small portions and the pieces should be separated by placing cling wrap between them, in order to prevent them from sticking together. They should then be placed in an airtight container or ziplock bags. They should be allowed to cool completely before sealing so that the steam can be released.

Grilled or roasted chickens can be stored either whole or in portions. If you have cut the chicken into portions, store them as for fried chicken. If you have a whole chicken, wrap it up well in aluminum foil. 

A chicken casserole or stew can also be stored in an airtight container. This can be a plastic container with a good seal, but I find it super-convenient to store this kind of cooked chicken dish in an oven-proof dish that has an airtight plastic or silicone seal. Then when you are ready to heat up you can simply remove the seal, cover with foil, and place it in the oven. 

Can Cooked Chicken be Frozen?

Most chicken dishes can be frozen very successfully. Your freezer temperature should be set at 0° Fahrenheit (-18° Celcius) or lower. This is the optimal temperature to store cooked food. When your freezer is cold enough, cooked chicken can be stored for at least 3 months, possibly even longer. 

My freezer is my secret best friend. I love planning ahead for those busy days when I know that chaos will reign and I won’t have time to cook. If I am cooking anyway, I like to double up and freeze. It makes life so much easier knowing that when everyone is hungry and clamoring for dinner, all I have to do is pop a pre-cooked dish in the oven, and we are ready to eat. This is a great time saver, and a fabulous way to minimize the stress of a rough day. 

 

Can I Leave Frozen Cooked Chicken Out to Defrost?

Cooked chicken should never be left out to thaw overnight. Dangerous bacteria can take hold and the chicken will start to go off if left out overnight. It is much safer to take your cooked chicken out of the freezer the night before and leave it to defrost in the fridge.

Cooked chicken can also be defrosted quickly in the microwave, but make sure that it does not become only mildly warm, and then left for longer than a few minutes. Once defrosted, heat it up fully and eat it straight away.

 

How Can I Tell if Cooked Chicken Has Gone Bad?

There are a few ways to determine whether your chicken is still safe to eat, or if it has gone bad. 

  • Color – Cooked chicken that is off will change color. It will look grey and may develop mold.
  • Smell – Fortunately, we can use our sense of smell to determine if the chicken is off.  Do not risk eating or even just tasting it if you suspect that it is not good. Rather smell it. Cooked chicken that is off will have a rancid, pungent odor.
  • Feel – Don’t be afraid to touch the chicken. If it is off, it will have an unpleasant, slimy coating.

 

Can I Get Sick From Eating Cooked Chicken That Has Been Left Out?

Eating cooked chicken that has been left out for too long can give you a nasty case of food poisoning. If it is only slightly off, you should not get too sick, but may experience some stomach cramping and vomiting.

If the cooked chicken has been left out for a long time, food poisoning can be much more severe. You could get very sick and may need hospital treatment.

 

How Do I Deal With Food Poisoning From Cooked Chicken?

If you leave cooked chicken out for too long and you get food poisoning from it, you will start feeling sick fairly soon after eating it. The first symptoms are usually stomach cramps, nausea, and diarrhea. If you have a mild attack, you will recover on your own, but it is important to drink lots of water in order to prevent dehydration.

If your symptoms don’t clear up and you cannot keep anything down, you should seek medical attention. You may need to be given an intravenous drip to treat you for dehydration, and you will need medication.

If you know how long you can leave cooked chicken out, and you are careful about following good hygiene and safety practices in your food storage and preparation, you should not have to worry about dealing with food poisoning. Even if you leave the chicken out for a short period of time, and it is not too hot indoors, it will still be perfectly safe to eat. 

What Does Pheasant Taste Like? A Guide

what does pheasant taste like

Many people like the idea of eating pheasant because it is seen as a somewhat exotic dish. If you have never eaten it before, are you curious about it? Do you ever think to yourself, what does pheasant taste like?

Pheasant is a type of poultry and is fairly similar in texture and taste to chicken, or turkey. Just like chicken and turkey, it has a combination of both white and dark meat. Pheasant has very little natural fat, so when you cook it, you have to be careful not to let it become too dry, otherwise, it will be bland, tasteless, and tough. But, with the right recipe, if cooked with care, the pheasant can taste absolutely delicious and leave you salivating for more.

Pheasant is best cooked on the bone, with butter and seasonings slipped under the skin, in order to give you a soft, moist and tender dish. Later on in this article, we will look at one or two recipes and methods of cooking pheasant in order to guide you with preparing it in the most delectable way. 

If you called up a gourmet foodie and asked, “What does pheasant taste like?” The reply will be that while pheasant may taste similar to chicken, its true flavor is more like game meat, with a smokey flavor. Wild pheasant has a fairly strong, aromatic flavor. It has quite a distinctive taste. 

If you have ever cooked turkey, you will know that it takes a long time to cook to perfection. I remember my Mom cooking turkey every year for the holidays. The aroma that wafted through the house as the turkey took its time slow-roasting in the oven made us all walk around with our tongues hanging out, nagging for just a quick taste. But my Mom was adamant, saying “Good food takes time to prepare. When it’s ready, the wait will be worth it.”

She was so right about that. And when wondering what pheasant tastes like, the same rule of thumb applies to cooking it. Slow roasting on medium heat, with just the right seasonings and sauces, will give you the ultimate melt-in-your-mouth taste of perfectly cooked pheasant.

Read Related Reading: What Does Foie Gras Taste Like?

Is Pheasant Healthy to Eat?

Pheasant is considered by nutritionists to be an extremely healthy source of protein. With our frenetic lifestyles today, many people often tend to choose the easy way out, eating a lot of fast foods, processed meats, rich dairy products, and foods high in trans-fats. 

It is no secret that making a habit of eating these foods and following this type of diet is a sure way to cause damage to your arteries. There is more and more emphasis today on the importance of following a healthy diet, and the benefits of living a healthy lifestyle. 

If you are wondering what pheasant tastes like, you might also like to know that making it a regular part of your diet has many health benefits. It is very lean, making it low in saturated fats. Unlike certain red meats, pheasant will not clog your arteries with fatty deposits. If you suffer from high cholesterol, you can safely allow pheasant to appear regularly on your table.

What Do Pheasants Eat?

what does pheasant taste like

When trying to answer the question, what does pheasant taste like, it is helpful to look at what pheasants themselves eat? I remember an old favorite television advert, from my childhood, for a certain brand of frozen chicken. The slogan was a simple, but highly memorable one. The reason that they taste so good, is because they eat so well. The same principle would apply to pheasants.

In the wild, pheasants eat fruit, seeds, insects, and even small mammals. Farm-reared pheasants are usually fed a healthy diet of mixed grains, corn, and seeds. They are not fed a fatty diet and are not given any meat to eat. The result is that pheasant is a healthy source of lean protein.

In addition to its protein value, pheasant meat is also rich in vitamins B-6 and B-12. It contains essential minerals such as selenium and potassium and is low in sodium. All-in-all, pheasant is not only an exotic and alluring dish. It is also a healthy and nutritious choice.

Can You Eat Pheasant Eggs?

Pheasant eggs are full of healthy nutrients. They are very rich in protein and amino acids and contain high levels of vitamins B and D. There are many delicious ways to cook these eggs, either on their own or as valuable ingredients in other dishes.

What is the Best Way to Cook Pheasant?

Before actually cooking your pheasant, it is necessary to clean it very well. If you buy from a reputable butcher, it should have already been hung for a few days to ensure that the meat is soft and tender. 

Your butcher should also have made sure that your bird has been plucked clean and does not have any stray feathers. When you unwrap it before cooking, even if it looks clean, it is recommended to wash it well by rinsing thoroughly under cold running water. Remember to rinse the inside cavity well, too. You will also want to dry it carefully, in order to prevent the juices from being too watery when you cook it.

Should You Cook Pheasant in the Oven, or on the Stove Top?

You will achieve the best results from slow-roasting your pheasant in the oven at a medium temperature of about 330-350 degrees Fahrenheit. Any hotter than that and your bird will dry out. If you attempt to cook pheasant on the stovetop, the heat of the flame will be too intense and it will not cook evenly. The outside will be hard and dry, while the inside might be under-done.

How Should You Prepare the Pheasant?

what does pheasant taste like

My favorite recipe is so simple and straightforward, but oh so scrumptious! I honestly believe that a recipe does not have to be complicated and intricate, and long and involved, in order to be good. In fact, it is often the simplest and easiest recipes that yield the best results. An added bonus to this recipe is the fact that you literally only dirty two dishes in your kitchen.

Ingredients

  • 1 whole pheasant
  • 3 cups of water
  • 3 tablespoons coarse salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons good quality olive oil or softened butter
  • A little maple syrup
  • A sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper
  • Fresh thyme
  • Cut up carrot sticks
  • 1 whole onion, peeled

Instructions

First, soak the bird in brine. Make the brine by boiling the water, salt, bay leaves, and sugar. Cover and leave to cool completely. When cool, pour the brine over the bird and place it in the fridge for about 8 hours, or overnight. 

Hint: if you like nice, crispy skin, remove the bird from the brine and leave it uncovered in the fridge for another 4-6 hours.

Take the pheasant out of the fridge and, while it reaches room temperature, preheat your oven to at least 400 degrees. Rub the bird well with olive oil or softened butter. Try to slip some under the skin as well. This will give you lovely golden, crispy skin. Sprinkle freshly ground black pepper and drizzle very lightly with maple syrup.

Stuff the cavity with the onion, carrot sticks and fresh thyme. Place in a roasting pan and roast uncovered in the oven on high for only fifteen minutes. Take the dish out of the oven, and turn the temperature down to 330-350 degrees. You can leave the oven door slightly ajar to speed up the cooling process. Put the bird back in the oven and roast slowly, also uncovered, for another 30-45 minutes, or until the juices run clear. Take it out of the oven and let it stand for about 10 minutes before carving and serving. 

What Does Pheasant Taste Like When Cooked in a Slow Cooker?

The beauty of the recipe given above is that it is easily adapted to slow-cooking. However, you will need more liquid. Follow all the instructions as above, but before placing in the slow-cooker, brown your bird lightly in a pan with a little hot oil, to give it an appetizing color. Put the pheasant into the slow cooker. You can also add some vegetables, like potatoes and pumpkin or baby marrows. Now you will need some liquid to ensure that it doesn’t dry out. Take 3-4 cups of good quality chicken stock. Add a generous splash of sherry. Cover the cooker and allow it to cook on low for about 8-10 hours.

How Do You Carve A Pheasant?

Carving a pheasant is much the same as carving a chicken. The trick is to use a very sharp knife. Place your fork in the centre of the breast and slice downwards in a short quick motion. The meat should come away from the bone. If the breast pieces are very large you can slice them up into smaller pieces. Now cut off the wings, and separate the legs and thighs. Serve with a selection of vegetables to suit your taste.

You are now ready to pour yourself a glass of your favorite wine, and tuck in and enjoy a mouthwatering, healthy meal!

 

Read Other Related Reading: What does Cauliflower Taste Like? The Many Tastes and Colors – a Guide

How to Make Potato Chips in the Oven without Oil – A Guide

how to make potato chips in oven without oil

Most people I know share my love for potato chips. Sadly, the store-bought versions of this delectable snack are not very healthy, because they are all made with oil. But what if you knew how to make potato chips in the oven without oil? When I learned how to do this, it was a real game-changer for me. 

Potato chips come in many varieties. There are lots of different brands on store shelves, all competing to catch your eye, tempt your tastebuds, and find their way into your shopping basket. When you stroll down the snacks aisle of your local supermarket, you will see that potato chips dominate. 

The most popular ones are the straight cut, plain salted variety, but you have so many other options. Crinkle cut, potato sticks, potato puff balls, an array of flavors like salt and vinegar, barbecue, sour cream and onion, hot chili pepper, Mexican spice, pickled onion, and the list goes on. 

Then there are all the alluring packages. Shiny foil bags, brightly colored pictures, familiar brand logos, tall cardboard tubes…I can picture myself walking down that aisle, looking at all of these, and I start salivating at the thought of that crunchy deliciousness in my mouth.

I’m sure that by now you have guessed that I REALLY love potato chips. But all of those scrumptious brands, types and flavors have one thing in common: they are all cooked in oil. 

Check this Related Article: How to Reheat Leftover Quiche – A Guide to Store, Freeze, and Reheat

Why are Potato Chips so Unhealthy?

how to make potato chips in oven without oil

Because all of your favorite potato chips are cooked in oil, they are loaded with unhealthy trans fats. Trans fats are a particularly dangerous form of fat because they not only raise LDL (so-called ‘bad’ cholesterol), but they also lower HDL (the ‘good’ cholesterol). Trans fat increases blood triglyceride levels. This causes damage to the arteries and can ultimately lead to a heart attack. No matter how much you might love potato chips, I think you will agree that it is not worth risking your life for them.

 

Is there a healthier option?

Fortunately, there is a healthier way to enjoy your favorite snack. A  guilt-free version can be yours to enjoy once you learn how to make potato chips in the oven without oil. It is really quite simple to do, as long as you have the right tools and equipment.

What do I need?

Luckily, you most probably already have these items in your kitchen. You need the following:

  • Two large, flat baking trays
  • A sharp vegetable peeler
  • Parchment paper
  • A food processor with a mandoline slicer attachment

What if I don’t have a food processor?

You can manage without a food processor, but you will then need a very sharp knife and a little more time.

What kind of potatoes should I use?

There are numerous different varieties of potatoes available. The one that I like to use to make potato chips in the oven without oil is called the Yukon Gold. But you can use any type that you like. It’s basically a personal preference. Some varieties are seasonal, and may also be area-dependent. But one thing that they all have in common is that they are actually a very healthy vegetable. 

So many people are under the false impression that potatoes are bad for you, but this is large because of the unhealthy methods that are used to prepare them. It is usually the added oil, butter, or sauces that are unhealthy, and not the potatoes themselves. Potatoes are filled with healthy nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. They contain potassium, iron, magnesium, vitamin C, vitamin B-6, and fiber. These are all an important part of a normal, healthy diet. 

A step-by-step guide for how to make potato chips in the oven without oil:

how to make potato chips in oven without oil

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Wash the potatoes well and dry them thoroughly. 
  3. Prepare your baking trays by lining them with parchment paper.
  4. Peel the potatoes.
  5. Put them through the food processor, slicing them into thin slices. If you don’t have a food processor, slice carefully with a very sharp knife. Your slices should be 2-3 mm thick.
  6. Lay the potato slices out on the baking trays, taking care not to let them overlap at all. If they do, the chips will not crisp up and will remain soft and soggy.
  7. Place the trays in a hot oven.
  8. After 20 minutes, rotate the trays to ensure even heat distribution.
  9. Cook for another 20 minutes, or until nicely browned and crisp. (Watch them carefully, as they can burn easily)
  10. Immediately after removing from the oven, sprinkle generously with the seasoning of your choice. 

What seasonings are the most suitable for home-made, oil-free potato chips?

What seasoning to use depends mostly on what flavors appeal to your taste buds. There are so many different options available. The most common way to season potato chips is with plain fine salt. However, many people enjoy more spicy flavors. Here are a few suggestions, but you can use anything that you have in the spice rack that appeals to you.

  • Salt and vinegar
  • Barbecue spice
  • Paprika
  • Chilli spice
  • Thai sweet curry powder
  • Fresh herbs
  • Powdered parmesan cheese
  • Cheddar cheese powder
  • Dried onion powder
  • Dried mushroom powder

You might want to be a little adventurous and experiment with different combinations of some of the above seasonings and spices, such as parmesan cheese mixed with a little mushroom powder, or, for those of you with a sweet tooth, cinnamon and sugar. My personal favorite is a mixture of cheddar cheese powder with dried onion powder. That sensation of the mingling of flavors on your tongue will leave you wanting to make another batch.

Hint: This is why I always make at least two trays at a time. One does not go very far!

Whatever flavor you choose, I am sure that now that you know how to make potato chips in the oven without oil, your family will thank you forever and this crunchy, healthy snack will become a firm favorite in your household.

Read Other Related Reading: How to Cook Deer Ribs: A Comprehensive Guide

How to Cook Deer Ribs: A Comprehensive Guide

how to cook deer ribs

If you are a meat lover, you will know that there is nothing like digging into a huge rack of sticky ribs, slathered with a tangy sauce. But do you know how to cook deer ribs? If you sometimes worry about the possibility that you might be eating too much meat, and the health issues that go with it, deer ribs are the answer. 

The edible meat that we get from games such as deer, elk, antelope, and moose is known as venison. The most popular of these is deer meat, and, with the correct preparation, it can be turned into a gastronomic delight. In this article, we will not only learn how to cook deer ribs, but we will also look at some other interesting aspects of venison in general, and deer ribs in particular.

Is Venison Considered Red or White Meat?

Like beef and lamb ( the most commonly eaten red meats), venison is red meat. But, unlike venison, beef and lamb both have a high-fat content and are therefore considered to be unhealthy if eaten frequently and in large quantities.

The fat from these meats finds its way into your bloodstream and can cause health problems such as high cholesterol and clogged arteries. Venison, on the other hand, is very lean meat. It is low in fat and is just as tasty as beef and lamb when cooked correctly.

Read Related Article: How to Make Potato Chips in the Oven without Oil – A Guide

Can Venison be Included in a Healthy Diet?

Venison is much healthier than beef or lamb, and can definitely be eaten by those who are health-conscious and follow a healthy eating plan. Venison is very high in protein. It is filled with essential amino acids and it will also help to keep your iron level within a normal range. 

It contains vitamins such as vitamin B2, which is needed to break down carbohydrates in the body, vitamin B6, needed for regulating blood glucose levels, vitamin B3, which helps to minimize the risk of heart disease, and vitamin B12, a nutrient that is necessary for keeping the body’s nerve and blood cells healthy. 

Can Diabetics Eat Venison?

Yes, diabetics can definitely eat venison safely. It is essential for people with diabetes to limit their carbohydrate intake, as the body converts carbohydrates into sugar. This raises blood glucose levels and can be dangerous for diabetics. Venison does not contain any carbohydrates and is therefore highly beneficial for those who need to keep their blood glucose levels under control.

There are other health benefits associated with eating venison. It will help to keep your cholesterol levels low, thus preventing cardiovascular disease. It contains conjugated linoleic acid, which is known to enhance cancer prevention. Because of its high iron content, it aids in the prevention of anemia. It will also help to keep weight under control and prevent obesity, because of its low-fat content.

Is it Generally Safe to Eat Wild Animals?

how to cook deer ribs

Deer meat is safe for human consumption, although there have been some concerns about the possibility of ingesting dangerous microbes when eating wild game. In uncontrolled conditions, there could be certain health risks associated with eating it. Certain animals can be contaminated with infectious pathogens. Therefore it is crucial to observe careful hygiene and sanitary routines when preparing and cooking venison. As long as you wash the meat thoroughly before cooking it, and you wash your hands after washing the meat, it is perfectly safe to eat.

Where Can I Get Deer Ribs?

A great meal of deer ribs begins with the butcher. It is important to buy from a reputable butcher. As far as hygiene safety goes, reputable butchers are regulated and will follow the guidelines, observing all regulations regarding cleanliness and safety practices. 

They will only buy their stock from known and reputable farmers and breeders, ensuring that the animals have not been exposed to dangerous viruses and diseases. 

An expert butcher will be highly skilled in cutting up the carcass into the various sections, knowing which parts are edible meat and which parts need to be discarded. 

During the first 24 hours after slaughtering, the animal stiffens. If the meat is cut off during this time, it will be extremely tough. Therefore the butcher has to hang the carcass for two to four days before cutting it up into the various portions for consumption. This will help to ensure that the meat you buy will be tender. 

How to Cook Deer Ribs

Deer ribs are highly versatile. If cooked correctly, they will have you licking your fingers and smacking your lips for more. The most popular method of how to cook deer ribs is to grill them on either a charcoal grill or a gas grill. 

For many people, their barbecue grill is a vital piece of equipment in the home. Who doesn’t love that special vibe of spending time outdoors with treasured family and friends, standing around the barbecue with a drink in hand? It is such a pleasurable way to unwind and let go of all your stress.

 A few hours spent in the garden, or on your apartment balcony, cooking up a storm on the barbecue, is a wonderful escape from it all. So unpack those deer ribs, and uncover that barbecue grill. 

What Kind of Grill is Best?

We love the unique flavors and aromas of a charcoal grill. No other method of cooking will give you that same flavor. However, a gas grill works just as well and is definitely cleaner and easier to use. 

Whichever type of grill you choose, be it either charcoal or gas, your grill should have two heat zones. This will enable you to keep the temperature steady. One side of the grill should get very hot, and produce direct heat. The other side does not actually produce heat, so the meat cooks at a much lower temperature, through indirect, or convection heat, thus giving it the smoked taste that we find so appealing.

When considering how to cook deer ribs, do not fall into the trap of thinking that if you use direct heat the meat will cook more quickly and easily. This may be so, but it will be charred and burnt.

Eating meat that has been burnt to the point of being blackened is a health risk. When food is cooked at such high temperatures that it goes black, a chemical called acrylamide is formed. This is thought to be carcinogenic, which means that it could be a cancer-causing agent.

Quite apart from the health and safety aspect, cooking deer ribs over such extreme heat will also completely ruin the flavor and texture of the meat. You should cook your ribs until they are a lovely golden color. They will then taste utterly delicious, without any of the potential health risks associated with eating burnt meat.

How to Tell if the Grill is Too Hot

One of the secrets to success with cooking on a grill is getting the temperature just right. Many high-end brand-name grills come with a built-in thermometer in the domed cover. This will give you a precise measurement of the temperature of your grill. However, we aren’t all lucky enough to own one of these.

So how can you measure temperature without a thermometer? The best tool to use to measure the heat of your grill is actually your hand. If you follow these guidelines, you will get a fairly accurate estimate of the temperature of your grill. 

When performing this test, make sure that you aren’t wearing anything that has a loose, flowing or flapping sleeve that can catch fire. Place an empty soda can on the grill. This will be your yardstick to get the exact right height, which is 5 inches. Carefully hold your hand, palm side down, over the grill, next to the soda can. (Remember to use tongs to remove it. It will get very hot.)

Hold your hand in place over the grill for as long as you can without the heat hurting you. Quickly remove your hand as soon as you start feeling pain. The length of time that you can keep your hand over the grill will tell you the temperature of the heat.

  • 2 – 4 seconds, with high heat at, 450°- 550° Fahrenheit
  • 5 – 7 seconds, with medium heat at, 350° – 450° Fahrenheit
  • 8 – 10 seconds, with low heat at, 250° – 350° Fahrenheit

Which Heat Zone is Best for Cooking Deer Ribs?

how to cook deer ribs

If you cook deer ribs using only direct heat, the juices will run out and the meat will dry up very quickly. The result will be ribs that are tough, dry, and tasteless. Not only will your ribs be completely unappetizing, but this method will also destroy all the protein and other nutrients, stripping your meal of all the health benefits we discussed earlier in this article.

If your grill has two heat zones, you are able to control the temperature that is applied to the meat. Your ribs will be soft, tender, and succulent if you start them off in the indirect heat zone.

Further on in this article, you will find recipes using different rubs to season the ribs. Some of these rubs contain sugar. Sugar burns very easily under hot temperatures. Burnt sugar will blacken your meat, which you definitely do not want. If you start the ribs off in the indirect zone this will prevent the sugar from burning.

Once the ribs are almost cooked, you should then move them over to the direct heat zone, and baste them with lashings of sauce or marinade. The sugar or maple syrup in the sauce (yes, these are wonderful ingredients and will enhance the flavor of the sauce ) will become thick and sticky, giving you those perfect ribs that you just have to eat with your fingers in order to enjoy every last scrap of meat on the bone. 

What? Eat with my fingers? I’ll bet you are thinking that is plain rude, but later on, in this article, we will talk about the etiquette and table manners that are involved when eating ribs. We will also give you a step-by-step guide for how to cook deer ribs on a grill.

The best recipes for deer ribs start with a good rub. There are many commercial varieties available on store shelves, but it is so easy and so much more satisfying to make your own. If you make a large quantity, these will keep for at least six months if you store them in an airtight jar. Home-made rubs are always nicer, and, of course, cheaper. Here are a few suggestions: (with all of these rubs, simply mix the ingredients well with a fork)

1. BBQ rub

Ingredients

    • 4 tablespoons brown sugar
    • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
    • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
    • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
    • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
    • 1 teaspoon powdered onion flakes
    • 1 teaspoon garlic powder ( optional)

2. Mixed-spice dry rub

Ingredients

    • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
    • 4 teaspoons kosher salt
    • 2 teaspoons cumin
    • 1/2 a teaspoon white pepper
    • 1/2 a teaspoon black pepper
    • 2 teaspoons red paprika
    • 1/2 a teaspoon cayenne pepper
    • 2 teaspoons onion powder
    • 1/2 a teaspoon chili powder

3. Mustard rub

Ingredients

    • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
    • 2 tablespoons mustard powder
    • 2 tablespoons dried parsley
    • 2 tablespoons dried rosemary
    • 2 teaspoons black pepper

What Basting Sauce is the Most Delicious for Deer Ribs?

how to cook deer ribs

If you want ribs that are ultra-yummy and moist, you will need to baste them frequently when they are cooking. You will find a huge variety of basting sauces in your supermarket. You can select from these, according to your personal preference, but we actually like combining these with other ingredients to conjure up all sorts of interesting flavors. Simply place all of the ingredients in a bowl and mix well with a spoon, then use this mixture as a basting sauce. Here are our top suggestions:

1.Sweet and sticky barbecue sauce

Ingredients

    • One cup tomato ketchup
    • 1/2 a cup Worcestershire sauce
    • 1/2 a cup teriyaki sauce
    • 1/2 a cup maple syrup
    • 1 heaped teaspoon barbecue spice.
    • 1 cup boiling water

2. Honey and mustard sauce

Ingredients

    • Half a cup of honey
    • Half a cup prepared mustard
    • Half a cup of mayonnaise
    • 1 tablespoon brown vinegar
    • 1/2 a teaspoon sweet paprika
    • 1/2 a teaspoon dried mixed herbs
    • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

3. Lemon and herb sauce 

This basting sauce is not of the sweet and sticky variety, but it is very good on ribs. 

Ingredients

    • Freshly squeezed juice of one big lemon
    • Zest of one lemon
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 a teaspoon black pepper
    • 1 cup chopped parsley
    • 1/2 a cup fresh basil
    • ¼ cup fresh chives
    • 2-3 sprigs fresh rosemary
    • 1 sprig of fresh oregano
    • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil

STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE FOR HOW TO COOK DEER RIBS

  1. Rinse and dry the meat.
  2. Coat the meat well with a rub of your choice, and press it down firmly into the meat.
  3. Leave the meat to stand for at least an hour.
  4. Place the meat in the indirect heat zone of your grill and cover with the dome.
  5. Let the ribs cook gently until almost done, turning every ten to fifteen minutes.
  6. Baste the ribs generously with your preferred sauce and move them to the direct heat zone of the grill.
  7. Keep turning and basting the ribs every few minutes, until they are a lovely golden brown color.

You are now ready for a feast! But how do you enjoy your ribs without losing your dignity in the process?

Table Etiquette when Eating Ribs

Because ribs are usually sticky and gooey, and it is difficult to get all the meat off the bone, the best way to eat them is with your fingers. But there is a way to do this without looking completely unrefined, as long as you have a very sharp knife and a fork, and a good supply of napkins and wipes.

  1. Using your knife and fork, cut as much meat as possible off the bone, trimming it as close to the bone as possible. Eat this meat normally, using your cutlery.
  2. Place your cutlery neatly together on your plate, and pick up a bone between your fingers, as delicately as possible. Try to use only the tips of your fingers, and not your whole hand. But do make sure that you have a firm grip on the bone so that it doesn’t slip out of your hands and land in your lap.
  3. Hold the bone up to your mouth and bite the remaining meat off, trying not to let the edges of the bone touch your cheeks and smear them with sauce.
  4. Repeat this procedure until all your bones are clean and you have had an elegant sufficiency. In other words, your stomach is full!
  5. Using napkins and wipes, clean your hands and wipe your face.

Now that you know how to cook deer ribs and how to eat them politely, you are ready to invite your friends and go out and light that fire.

Check this Other Related Article: How to Reheat Leftover Quiche – A Guide to Store, Freeze, and Reheat

What does Cauliflower Taste Like? The Many Tastes and Colors – a Guide

The Many Tastes, Colors, and Joys of Cauliflower

what does cauliflower taste like

Cauliflower has transformed from the avoided vegetable of your youth to a cherished gem of taste and nutrition as well as an upscale culinary delight. Cauliflower has been all the rage on the culinary scene in the past few years. Naturally high in vitamin C and a great source of fiber, the rebirth of cauliflower is not due to its health benefits — that’s old news — but due to its versatility in the kitchen. 

To complement its growing popularity, cauliflower sales have skyrocketed in the past few years, gaining nearly 40% between 2016-2019.  Formerly known as that tasteless white vegetable that mom steamed and served alongside tuna casserole, cauliflower is now featured at numerous high-end restaurants around the world. 

We’re not only talking about cauliflower soup or mashed cauliflower but delicacies like cauliflower gratin, general Tso’s cauliflower, or buffalo cauliflower (i.e., in place of chicken wings) have become regular features in upscale restaurants.

The cauliflower pizza crust is not only a Pinterest craze but has become a staple in some pizza chains, a great alternative for those with celiac or other wheat-avoidant diets. 

Then there’s cauliflower rice, pulsed cauliflower that resembles the shape and texture of rice, that has become wildly popular much to the ire of rice companies, who have legislated to outlaw the term ‘cauliflower rice’. The term ‘riced cauliflower’ is the now legally acceptable term in states such as Arkansas. 

Read Related Reading: What Does Pheasant Taste Like? A Guide

What is Cauliflower?

Cauliflower is part of the Brassica plant family—made up of cruciferous vegetables, (think cabbage, kohlrabi, broccoli), known as such since the four petals of their flowers resemble a cross. We generally eat only the head, or curds (named for their resemblance to cheese curds), of the cauliflower.

Cauliflower comes from the Italian cavolfiore, which translates as ‘cabbage flower’ since cabbage is the plant and cauliflower is the flower of the plant.

Taste of Cauliflower

Cauliflower has a mild nutty flavor with sweet undertones. It does have a sharp, slightly bitter aftertaste whose strength will fluctuate based on the type of cauliflower and how long it was exposed to the sun when growing (too much sun here is a bad thing). 

Different people’s taste buds process bitter tastes differently causing the bitterness of cauliflower to be more apparent for some than others. In general, though, the quite neutral flavor makes cauliflower a great vegetable for numerous recipes, as the flavoring given to it is what will stand out foremost.

The Cauliflower Rainbow

what does cauliflower taste like

Move over boring white cauliflower. Of the hundreds of existing cauliflower varieties, the colorful genres will add a splash of color, and a unique taste, to your meal. 

The purple, green, and orange cousins of plain ol’ white cauliflower started popping up in farmer’s markets and supermarkets a bit more than a decade ago, and have become increasingly popular and, therefore, increasingly available.

Green cauliflowers, also known as broccoflower, tend to have a sweeter and milder taste than their white cousins. Their texture is more similar to broccoli than cauliflower, making them more firm and less crumbly. 

There is also Romanesco (referred to as Romanesco broccoli or Romanesco cauliflower, but it’s the same vegetable) which has artistic looking spiky florets and is crunchier and sweeter than traditional white cauliflower.

Eye-catching purple varieties are not only a stunning addition to any salad but they have increased health benefits. The purple hue is caused by anthocyanins, which cause a blue, purple, or black color in foods. You will find it in blueberries, raspberries, black rice, and many other foods.

Anthocyanins are a powerhouse of nutrients and antioxidants and are believed to have properties that can help prevent cancer and diabetes, as well as improve visual health, among other benefits.

Taste-wise, the florets of purple cauliflower has a soft crumbly texture similar to the white variety, yet are sweeter and milder creating a perfect synthesis of beauty and flavor.

The downside to purple cauliflower is that its magnificent royal shade may turn from vibrant purple to barely-there green when cooking it, especially if you boil it.

The color of orange cauliflower, on the other hand, actually deepens when cooking.

Orange cauliflowers, such as cheddar cauliflower — named for its color, not taste — have a lot of nutrition to offer due to the beta-carotene they contain. This may also contribute to its sweeter and milder flavor. 

Choosing a Cauliflower

Cauliflower is available all year round but its peak season is in the Fall (and extends through the Winter), so take advantage of the current cauliflowery abundance and go pick up one or two heads of the freshest, most vibrant cauliflower at your local farmer’s market.

Look for firm heads with compact florets. As opposed to broccoli, cauliflower florets should be tightly closed, making it hard to distinguish separate florets, it should look more like one beautiful entity. 

Be sure that there are no brown patches and that the cauliflower isn’t soft. The leaves should look crisp and green, not yellow and wilting.

Storing Cauliflower 

what does cauliflower taste like

Cauliflower should be kept unwashed and loosely wrapped or in a ventilated plastic bag in your refrigerator’s crisper. Properly stored cauliflower will last 3-7 days. If it was super fresh when purchased, and stored properly, you might be able to get even 2 weeks, or more, out of it. 

Cooking Cauliflower

Cauliflower can certainly be eaten raw. Add color to your crudité with a colorful cauliflower combination. Or toss some fresh white cauliflower into a colorful garden salad for added crunch.

If you do plan on cooking your cauliflower, the preferred methods of cooking are dry ones, such as roasting, sautéing, grilling, or frying. When properly cooked, cauliflower gives off a very subtle taste, making it perfect to pair with a variety of sauces and seasonings.

Roasting

Wash, dry, and lightly toss cauliflower florets with extra virgin olive oil and your seasoning of choice. Some people prefer a traditional salt and pepper cauliflower, or you can try to add a bit of zing with spices such as zaatar or Cajun seasoning. The options are endless, try to find a few your family will love.

Roast at 425°F/220°C for about 30 minutes, checking it after 20 minutes.

You will also find numerous recipes for whole roasted cauliflowers which can be a great main at a vegan meal. A whole cauliflower generally needs to be slightly parboiled or steamed before roasting to ensure the center is thoroughly cooked. Follow recipe directions for the exact cooking method.

Sautéing

Not only is sauteed cauliflower incredibly delicious, but it is also a fast cooking method that ensures the nutrients (and generally colors) don’t leach out. Fast and yummy.  Definitely a keeper in my book!

Depending on the size of your florets and desired degree of remaining crunch, sautéing cauliflower will take anywhere between 5-15 minutes. 

Cauliflower should be sautéed on medium-high with good-quality extra virgin olive oil (what else?). Try mixing it with fresh garlic, onion, cherry tomatoes, or any other desired vegetables. 

Drizzle with your favorite sauce or a squeeze of lemon juice in the last three to four minutes of cooking, and turn up the temperature to high to get some nice browned tips.

Grilling

Cauliflower steaks are a great way to give this nutritious and delicious vegetable the spotlight. Whether making it as a main, adding it to a buffet, or serving as a side dish sure to wow your guests – grilling your cauliflower is super fast and simple.

Place the steaks on a grill set to medium, and brush with your favorite basic marinade. I would go for olive oil, lots of fresh lemon juice, chopped parsley, and a pinch of chili flakes. You can also add a small dollop of honey if you like it sweet. 

Another option is a spice mixture of olive oil, hot paprika, cumin, and turmeric. The flavoring possibilities are endless — your cauliflower steaks, your choice!

Flip over after 3-5 minutes, baste with marinade and grill for another 3-5 minutes until slightly charred and cooked to the desired degree of doneness. 

Frying

Fried cauliflower is a scrumptious delicacy popular in cuisines all around the world. Cauliflower florets can be dipped in egg-then-flour/breadcrumbs and pan-fried—mmm…or in a nice batter and deep-fried—really mmm.

Add some hot paprika to your flour mixture or hot sauce to your batter for an extra kick.  Serve with a garlic dip, sriracha mayo, salsa, yogurt dip, or whatever else you’d like!

Some recipes may have you parboil the cauliflower to make it faster and easier to fry. If you choose such a method, be sure to blanch it so it doesn’t cook too much (see the section on boiling cauliflower below).

Boiling

Boiling cauliflower should be avoided as it releases a very unappetizing sulfurous smell, which not only will cause anyone in the house to start screaming about the stench, it can turn the cauliflower bitter. And anyway, wouldn’t it be a shame to make such a bland dish when there are so many delicious cauliflower alternatives.

If you do like the taste of boiled cauliflower (childhood nostalgia?), steaming or blanching is a doable option, preferably in a non-aluminum pot.

Mark Twain claimed that “Cauliflower is nothing but cabbage with a college education” but I think he may have changed his mind had he tried that amazing new cauliflower creation you’re planning on whipping up this Sunday.

Read Other Related Reading: What Does Foie Gras Taste Like?

How to Reheat Leftover Quiche – A Guide to Store, Freeze, and Reheat

how to reheat quiche

Storing, freezing, reheating, and enjoying your buttery flaky deliciousness

They say real men don’t eat quiche — but being neither male nor vulnerable to the persuasions of ignorant food snobs — quiche is a definite yes for me. 

Highly-versatile and always a crowd-pleaser, add quiche to a nice brunch spread, bring it to a potluck, present it at the family holiday table, or serve it with your favorite salad (and a glass of white wine) for a satisfying lunch or light dinner. 

Not only is it sure to be eagerly consumed, but quiche also doesn’t take too much prep work (use a ready-made piecrust to make it a snap) and can be served hot or cold, making a Sunday picnic a great place to debut that new quiche recipe you’ve been dying to try.

Attributed to the French — but actually German in origin — this flaky-crusted delight can be filled with endless combinations to tickle your palate: vegetables of every color, cheeses of any type, meat, seafood, and did I mention cheddar cheese? 

Combined with a rich mixture of eggs, milk, and cream, seasoned however you like (definitely lots of fresh parsley), and baked to golden brown perfection — what’s not to love?

But nothing’s worse (well almost nothing) than having that melt-in-your-mouth goodness turn into a soggy-bottomed no-longer-instant-worthy mess from improper reheating. Cold on the inside but overly crunchy on the outside? No thanks. Shoe-leather crust and rubbery filling? Certainly not.

So what are you to do with that third of a spinach feta quiche leftover from cousin Sheryl’s bridal shower yesterday that you’re craving for lunch?

There are a number of methods for reheating leftover quiche, but the first step actually precedes the reheating, and that’s the storage.

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Storing Leftover Quiche

how to reheat quiche

If you plan on eating the leftover quiche within the next three days or so, be sure it’s covered tightly in aluminum foil or cling wrap. Avoid placing anything on top of it in the fridge, as a squished quiche is not what we’re going for. 

If you opt for freezing, the best method is tray freezing. Tray freezing entails laying the desired items on a lined tray and placing it (flat!) in the freezer for a few hours. 

Once completely frozen, remove it from the tray, carefully wrap it, and place it in a labeled (contents and date) zipper storage bag for future use. Try to ensure your bag is airtight, and certainly avoid using a bag that is bigger than necessary as that will cause unwanted air to get trapped in.

The tray freezing method is a perfect food prep hack for those of us that don’t have the time, patience, or organizational skills to always start everything from scratch. Try tray freezing fruit and vegetables, hamburger patties, cookie dough balls, or just about anything.

To tray freeze your leftover quiche, place it on a lined tray and stick it in the freezer for a few hours. Once completely frozen, carefully remove from the tray, wrap very well in tinfoil, and place it in a zipper storage bag before refreezing. The quiche will last a good 2–3 months in the freezer.

So, now that you made a delicious quiche (or better yet, were bequeathed it) and stored it properly, how should you proceed with reheating?

Oven Reheating

In order to keep your crust flaky and your filling a nice satisfying kind of gooey, the oven is definitely the best method for reheating. 

1.Preheat the oven to 350°F / 175°C — do not skip the preheat or your crust will get soggy.

2. If the quiche is not already in an ovenproof dish, transfer to a lined or nonstick baking tray.

3. Whether it needs to be covered or not depends on how browned the quiche was initially:

    • If it’s well-browned, cover with tinfoil. Just be sure to ‘tent’ the tinfoil, i.e., wrap the tinfoil in a tent shape so it does not adhere to the quiche and pull off that decadent top layer. 
    • If the quiche was not too browned, to begin with, leave it uncovered.
    • Heavily browned crust but yellow filling? You can wrap tinfoil just around the crust to prevent it from becoming too hard and leave the rest uncovered.

4. Bake the quiche for about 25 minutes or until it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F / 74°C. 

Need to purchase an oven thermometer? Click here for a great review of the best oven thermometers on the market. 

5. Allow your warm quiche to rest for a minute or two before digging in.

6. If the quiche is frozen, you will need to add about 10-15 minutes of oven time. Do not defrost the quiche before heating as that can create a soggy crust, instead unwrap from the freezer and proceed directly with the above directions.

Microwave Reheating

how to reheat quiche

Although not the preferred method, we don’t all have the necessary time, foresight (or patience!) to wait for the oven to heat up that leftover spicy caramelized onion and cheddar quiche. Microwaves can be a real time saver and can do a sufficiently good job of warming your food (now!).

  1. Remove quiche from the refrigerator and place it in a microwave-proof dish. Don’t forget to remove any tinfoil
  2. Should you have a large piece of quiche left, ideally it should be warmed up in individual portions to ensure an even distribution of heat.
  3. Place quiche uncovered in the microwave on medium heat (50%) for 2-3 minutes, checking every 30 seconds after the 1 ½-minute mark until it reaches 165°F/74°C degrees internally.
  4. If the quiche is frozen, use the defrost function according to the user manual’s directions, checking it periodically. Once fully defrosted, proceed with the above directions.

Now that you’ve got your quiche properly heated up, serve it to on your nicest plate (oh, you already ate it out of the pan, well I hope you enjoyed!), put on a relaxing Spotify playlist, and enjoy every bite.

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How to Reheat Biscuits – A Comprehensive Guide

How to Reheat Biscuits…
And Everything Else You May Want to Know About Those Delectable Buttery Delights

how to reheat biscuits

Slightly crispy on the outside, soft and fluffy on the inside, still warm from the oven—just smear it with butter and…yum. 

Freshly-baked biscuits may be the ultimate comfort food, but the cold two-day-old-leftover version just doesn’t stimulate the senses quite the same. So how can you reheat your biscuits to achieve that heavenly just-baked taste?

As September was National Biscuit Month, we’ve been heavily involved in biscuits, and have quite a few tips to share. But first, let’s just set the record straight on which kind of biscuit we’re discussing.

What’s a Biscuit?

In the United States and Canada (most of it at least), a biscuit is a soft-baked good with a flaky interior and browned crust. Biscuits are considered a quick bread, meaning they are created without yeast—eliminating the waiting time that yeast doughs require.

Biscuits can be eaten with savory or sweet fillings, or as in Southern cuisine—where buttermilk biscuits are the local fare—smeared with gravy and eaten at breakfast, served with eggs, hash browns, sausage, and the like. Or enjoyed at a family dinner complete with fried chicken, corn fritters, black-eyed peas, and candied yams. 

In the U.S., biscuits are regularly served in many fast-food chains and restaurants, especially in the South.

U.S. vs. U.K.

You may be shaking your head in disbelief. Biscuits smeared in gravy? The horror! 

If you’re experiencing such food anxiety, you probably hail from England or elsewhere in the Commonwealth.

The American biscuit strongly differs from what my English friends eat— which is plainly what we Americans call a cookie, although it could also be referring to its savory (or should we say savoury) cousin, the cracker. 

The American biscuit more closely resembles the British scone, which differs (of course, since nothing can be simple with cross-cultural food references) from the American scone.

The British biscuit is generally a crunchy cookie, which may be dunked in your early morning tea. Not to be confused with the more elaborate finger sandwiches and scones served at a proper English tea (although I must admit that I do get confused by the different menus for morning tea, afternoon tea, or high tea). 

For softer cookies, think chocolate chip orsnickerdoodle, Brits and Americans are in culinary agreement on the term cookie on both sides of the Atlantic it is.

In the Days of Yore

The etymology of the word biscuit is actually in line with the British definition. The word biscuit is derived from Latin where bis which mean twice and coctus translates as baked. Biscuits were originally double-baked to make them harder, and thereby more durable. 

Back in the days of old, sailors—or anyone going on a long journey overland (horses can only go so fast)—needed to take along provisions that would last for many months. The concern was not only spoilage; food for travel needed to be able to endure temperature and climate change as well as the rough handling that can occur during travel.

Biscuits like hardtack (which were baked four times!) were so hard they could last for months or even years. Considering it was hard as a rock (harder), to eat hardtack, it needed first to be softened—generally accomplished by dunking in a cup of morning coffee.

Perfect as rations for soldiers during the Civil War, troops would often break the hardtack into pieces—an uneasy feat, accomplished by using a rifle butt—and mix it with water to create a batter of sorts which was then fried into lumpy pancakes.

Properly Storing Your Biscuits to Keep them Fresh and Perfectly Delicious

how to reheat biscuits

Crunchy (or super-duper hard) biscuits do serve their purpose, but let’s get back to the soft, flaky American genre.

So you’ve made yourself some biscuits and enjoyed them straight out of the oven smeared with butter and that delicious homemade jam—a creation deemed necessary after an overeager strawberry picking expedition. Or you went out for a big family breakfast and took home the extras.

And now you have leftover biscuits (I can think of worse problems to have). Before discussing how to heat up your leftovers, let’s be sure you know how to store them.

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Cupboard Storage
Place leftover biscuits in an airtight container or zipper sealed bag, carefully squeezing out excess air before sealing tightly. Room-temperature biscuits can last for 1-2 days, possibly 3, if they were very fresh, to begin with, and they’re stored in a dry and cool kitchen. 

Refrigerator Storage
Refrigerated biscuits will generally stay good for up to a week. Be sure they are tightly wrapped—a zipper storage bag is ideal—and that they’re in a place where they won’t get squished by anything else. A good idea is to place the whole storage bag in a tightly sealed container, ensuring no air (or smells of other food in the fridge) gets trapped in and nothing can flatten your fresh delicacies.

Freezer Storage
With proper storage and freezing conditions, biscuits will stay good in the freezer for at least 2-3 months, depending on freshness level at the time of freezing.

Freeze your biscuits in a sturdy airtight container with parchment paper between layers. Ensure there is not too much empty space—read, extra air—in the container to maximize freshness. 

A second option is to place leftover biscuits in a zipper storage bag, then carefully place the bag into an airtight container. 

Not only will this ensure that no air gets trapped in, but it will keep your vulnerable biscuits safe from the perils of someone franticly searching for that leftover piece of red velvet birthday cake that-they-know-is-hidden-somewhere-in-the-freezer, wreaking havoc upon anything not safely guarded.

If you’re baking your own biscuits, and won’t need a large amount at once, a good option is freezing the formed raw biscuits to be baked as needed at a later date.

The best method for this is tray freezing: Once you’ve cut out your biscuit dough circles, put them on a parchment-lined tray and place flat in the freezer for about 2 hours until completely frozen. 

Once they’re frozen solid, very gently remove the biscuits from the tray and stack in a large airtight container. Be sure to place parchment paper between layers, or individually wrap each one in plastic wrap or aluminum foil to avoid them sticking together, enabling you to defrost only a few at a time.

All this talk about biscuits is certainly making you hungry. So how do you go about reheating those leftover biscuits?

How to Reheat Biscuits

how to reheat biscuits

Reheating Biscuits in the Oven

Oven warming is generally the best way to reheat any baked goods. Although it usually takes longer than other methods, it will ensure the best straight-from-the-oven replay.

  • Preheat oven to 350 Fahrenheit (to ensure even baking and a properly crispy exterior, do not skip this step)
  • Place biscuits on a parchment-lined or lightly greased baking tray. 
  • You can lightly coat the biscuits with melted butter or oil to ensure it stays moist. This is especially recommended if the biscuit had a crust that was a bit too crunchy or it got a tad dried out.
  • Bake until warm – duration of time depending on how it was stored
  • For cupboard stored biscuits:  3-4 minutes
  • For refrigerated biscuits: 6-8 minutes
  • For frozen baked biscuits: 13-15 minutes
  • For frozen raw biscuits: 25-30 minutes
  • Slather with butter, jam, gravy, or whatever else you’d like!

Reheating Biscuits in the Microwave

Due to the uneven heating of a microwave, when reheating biscuits in the microwave it’s best to warm up only one biscuit at a time.

For biscuits stored in the cupboard or fridge:

  • Wrap the biscuit in a damp paper towel to keep them from getting hard and dry.
  • Place on the microwave tray or in a microwave-safe container. You can loosely cover the biscuit but since it is wrapped, it’s not really necessary.
  • Microwave on medium-high for 1-3 minutes, checking every 30 seconds after the 1-minute-mark to ensure they don’t overheat rendering them tough and rubbery.
  • If the biscuits were frozen (but already baked), proceed with the above directions but increase heating time to 4-6 minutes, checking on it after the 5-minute-mark.
  • Don’t forget to slather with something really good and enjoy!

Reheating Biscuits on the Stove

  • Choose a frying pan suitable for the number of biscuits you need to reheat. 
  • Very lightly coat the biscuit with melted butter or oil and individually wrap each one in aluminum foil.
  • Heat your pan on medium-high (i.e. let it warm up for a minute or two before placing the biscuits in)
  • Place the biscuits in the pan and preferably cover the pan with a lid or even a large piece of tinfoil.
  • Adjust the flame to low, and after 2 minutes flip them over and continue warming for an additional minute until warmed through. 
  • If your biscuits were refrigerated, you will need to increase the time to an additional 30-60 seconds on each side. 
  • If your biscuits were frozen, you will need to heat it for a total of 5-6 minutes, flipping every minute to prevent it from getting too crunchy on one side.
  • Serve nice and hot and enjoy that blissful first bite!

Reheating leftovers that someone else made? You may have enjoyed it that much that you’re considering trying your hand at baking. Definitely go for it!

Whether you’re using a recipe from great Aunt Charlotte from Jacksonville, or the one your son’s playdate’s mom was raving about, here’s a few important tips to get you started:

Butter Me Up

Make sure your butter is really cold when you start – like really, really cold. The reason for this is that part of the buttery flaky goodness of biscuits is that you actually leave little specks of butter in the dough when you bake them. 

The butter encourages puffing, creating those scrumptious layers which make biscuits so irresistible.  (That together with the unique fold and flatten method used to knead the dough). 

If your butter isn’t nice and solid when you start, it’ll easily melt into the dough, detracting from the flakiness of the biscuit. 

A good trick is to cube the necessary amount of butter and place it in the freezer for 15 minutes before mixing it with the rest of your ingredients.

A Light Touch

how to reheat biscuits

On the same note, biscuit dough should not be thoroughly mixed or kneaded like typical bread dough. 

As you mix or knead the dough you activate the gluten more and more, and in light fluffy quick bread like biscuits, that will work against you causing a denser bread (I promise you’ll still eat it, it just won’t have that same soft fluffy texture).

And as mentioned above, we want bits of butter left in between layers—overhandling will certainly cause it all to melt in, so keep your mixing as light as possible.

Only Grade A

A general baking tip, the fewer ingredients in a recipe, the more important it is that they are high quality. So if you’re making a 3-ingredient chocolate mousse for your parent’s surprise 50th anniversary party, you’re going to want to really invest in that chocolate. 

Biscuits are primarily made of flour, butter or shortening, baking powder/soda, and salt. So, yup, don’t bother with that generic brand of flour you’ve never tried before on this one.

Crowding Has its Advantages

Contrary to other baking, you want to place the biscuits close together in the pan. They sort of lean on each other, encouraging each other to grow (this is starting to sound like a Hallmark card) nice and tall. Nice and tall equals super fluffy, and that’s a good thing.

Biscuits with butter, biscuits with gravy. Biscuits with jam, biscuits with a fried egg. Honey or maple syrup? That works too. Whatever you fancy just make sure you know how to (bake) store and reheat the leftovers so you can relive that first sensual bite all over again.

Read Other Related Article: Tips on How to Reheat Corn on the Cob

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