Recent content by aznninjahitman

  1. aznninjahitman

    What do you put in your bouquet garni?

    I made what is probably my best batch of bouillon ever today.  I used a whole chicken carcass and your standard aromatics.  I did not brown the chicken - rather, I removed the backbone and reserved it, removed the chicken's keel, and thus halved the carcass lengthwise, and rubbed the pieces with...
  2. aznninjahitman

    Cornish Game Hens en Papillote?

    Hi, I discovered en papillote a few days ago and was thinking about experimenting with this cooking technique. If I was cooking half a Cornish Game Hen (split along the breastbone/keel/spine meridian, of course), what sort of vegetables would go well with it in terms of cooking time?  I'm...
  3. aznninjahitman

    Best Vanilla Extract

    Buy it from King Arthur Flour in the 32 oz. size.  Here's a link: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/shop/items/madagascar-bourbon-vanilla-extract-32-oz I'm not sure how much shipping is, and buying at this kind of size is only really worthwhile if you use a lot of vanilla.  Let me stress a lot. ...
  4. aznninjahitman

    Hi, amateur/hobbyist baker and cook here

    Hi mustang.silly and petit patissier. =) I haven't used muscovado sugar in my baking yet... I don't dare, because my supply is so limited and it's very expensive as sugar goes. I do use it in tea and coffee occasionally, and the original purpose was actually to make caipirinhas [a Brazilian...
  5. aznninjahitman

    Hi, amateur/hobbyist baker and cook here

    The melonpan was... a little flatter than I had hoped. I was too rough on the dough during the shaping process, plus the gluten was probably overdeveloped (leading to some collapse after the oven spring). I've only tried it that once, and I'm actually planning to do it again in a week with a...
  6. aznninjahitman

    Why won't my sauce thicken?

    True. I could be wrong, though I use them much the same way [granted, it's in (specifically Asian) cooking rather than baking].
  7. aznninjahitman

    Fruit Confit

    Just wondering how you would go about making a confit of, say, a small cantaloupe or other melon, or a large grapefruit? Basically, I feel like experimenting this winter and trying to make several medium-sized fruit confits (but jumping in with both feet!). Would you recommend coating the...
  8. aznninjahitman

    Why won't my sauce thicken?

    Potato starch seems to be more forgiving than cornstarch, so in the interim, you could switch to that if you can't figure out the current problem.
  9. aznninjahitman

    Hi, amateur/hobbyist baker and cook here

    Hi Petit Patissier. ^^ I actually can't say I've experimented too much with Asian breads and pastries. I have done certain things like melonpan, certain steamed Chinese buns, and some baked ones, but I have to say that I mostly am experimenting with continental European breads and some...
  10. aznninjahitman

    Hi, amateur/hobbyist baker and cook here

    Ah, should clarify. I'm Chinese-American, that is, I'm pure Chinese by blood, though I grew up here. My dad, however, was an overseas Chinese in Vietnam and immigrated sometime after the war after a long trip around SE Asia, and my mom is just southern Chinese. I do have lots of diverse...
  11. aznninjahitman

    Hi, amateur/hobbyist baker and cook here

    Thanks for your kind words, guys. Yes, I've checked out the professional forums, mainly on baking. It really highlighted some concerns I'm still learning about (like chemical leaveners and influences on gluten structure, etc.!). Very interesting to me. I'm Chinese American, and I have a...
  12. aznninjahitman

    Hi, amateur/hobbyist baker and cook here

    Hi everyone, I'm C. I'm a student at a university in central Illinois. A big one. With a lot of agricultural departments. ;) I'm still learning more every day. I enjoy baking both desserts and European-style hearth breads, though I'm also dabbling in Asian-bakery sweets from time to time...
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