Don’t Forget to Remove the Bay Leaf: Cooking Tips from Shirley Corriher

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Shirley Corrinher is a well respected cook. A biochemist and author of CookWise: The Hows and Whys of Successful Cooking, Corrinher also is the winner of a James Beard Foundation award. Here other book BakeWise: The Hows and Whys of Successful Baking. CookWise explains how scientific principles can be applied to traditional cooking, while BakeWise applies the same theory to baking. She’s also a hoot to be around. She spoke at the IACP conference and shared some cooking tips with us.

  • Salt. Everywhere we turn nowadays we are hearing that salt is bad for us. But did you know that a small amount of salt reduces the bitterness in foods.
  • Greens. Greens contain acid. When the acid is released it changes the color of greens. So a little cooking makes the vegetables a bright green color. The longer you cook them the more acid is released. That’s why overcooking can lead to the dark green color.
  • Paella. When cooking paella, too many tomatoes can make the rice hard.
  • Asparagus. Want to make the perfect asparagus? It only takes a couple minutes – 4 to be exact. Put some grated lemon peel, a pinch of salt and a pinch of sugar and you’ve got a delicious side dish.
  • Risotto. Want to make it extra creamy? Add an egg yolk to risotto to make it super creamy. Shh…don’t tell, keep it our secret!
  • Meat. Searing meat does not keep juices in. Cooking it a consistent temperature is the way to keep the juices in. To avoid moisture loss make sure meat is brined. Meat that has been brined will lose only 15 percent moisture. Meat that has not been brined will loss about 30 percent moisture.

It was a terrific afternoon spent hearing not only only cooking tips from Shirley, but also hearing about her experiences being a very respected author, and the fun banter between her and husband.