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Fast or Slow - De File
Does Collecting Make You Feel Dirty?
Fast or Slow
I was reading one of my favorite cookbooks yesterday, Pedaling Through Provence by Sarah Leah Chase, and came across the following bit of advice:
The rule of thumb for achieving tender-tasting squid is to either sauté it very quickly or simmer it for a long period of time.
I'm never going to eat more than the tiniest taste of squid, since I'm allergic to it. But it struck me how this "rule of thumb" applies to many other culinary situations. And I was wondering why that is and what the deeper implications of it might be. Any of you chefs out there have an idea?

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flw From: flw Date: February 27th, 2007 07:47 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

R's o T

As "rules of thumb" (another pluralization we should be hearing a lot about along with Courts-Martial, Attorneys General and Crowns Victoria) go, this one is pretty vague.

In order to cook "X" you need to use a high temperature for a short amount of time, or a low temperature for a long time. Or... a medium temperature for a medium amount of time... but do not eat it raw, and don't hold a blow torch to it all day long. Both of those would be bad.
frostedfuckhead From: frostedfuckhead Date: February 27th, 2007 08:13 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
but cooking chicken at a low temperature for a long time will oftentimes dry it out UNLESS you're boiling/simmering it in liquid.

sauteeing anything for a long time will dry it out also... you usually want to sear the outside of the meat and lock the juices in...

a lot of times even if you're making a roast it's a good idea to sear it in hot oil first for this reason... or in the case of roasting a chicken you want to roast it high first (500 degrees!) for 20-30 minutes to ensure nice browning and the locking in of juices

boiling anything for a long time will obviously soften it...

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