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December 20, 2015

Food Thread: How To Cook A Turkey [CBD]

Via Ricochet and Y-not


If anyone isn't already just a little bit irritated by the smug superiority of Chipotle, just read this careful evisceration of their entire business plan. Look, I think their food is good, but the condescension inherent in their locavorian, all-natural, touchy-feely assumptions that they have the one true way of making fast-food is just a bit much.

And in spite of what one might intuit, chances are that buying local isn't any more environmentally friendly. Although local foods do travel fewer miles, there is much more to calculating environmental impact than food-miles. The vast majority of greenhouse-gas emissions occur near where the commodity is produced. As a result, it is logical to find the most efficient spots to grow fruits and vegetables and, from there, to ship them to other regions.

I have ranted on many occasions about the irrationality of local sourcing of food. It's as if your PC would be a better product if the memory were made within 20 miles of your house, rather than in the most efficient factory with the smoothest supply chain. Stupid, short-sighted, and ignorant of economics and logistics.

The author, Henry Miller, A fellow at The Hoover Institution, exposes some other interesting flaws in locally sourcing food for a large operation. Um...sanitation: it's the newest thing to hit food production. And Chipotle just doesn't get it.

And wonder of wonders, this writer also points out that organic foods are bred specifically to produce naturally occurring insecticides and herbicides to replace those used on conventional foods. So instead of washing off whatever trivial remnant of the chemicals used on your regular produce, you get to eat the chemicals in your organic stuff! That's called a "Lose-Lose" proposition in my book.


Here is an article with citations from the U.C. Davis Food Safety Laboratory discussing the advantages of wooden cutting boards. We chatted about it in last week's Food Thread, and several people mentioned reading of the bacteriological advantage of wooden cutting boards.

Well, you folks were correct. Anyone want to buy some well-used plastic cutting boards? The only thing I have cut on them is chicken. But they have always been locally sourced, free-range organic birds.


From artisanal 'ette, another installment from her kitchen. This time is is a wonderful idea for a long-term project for you cooking families.
Something I did for my family as a Christmas gift years ago is create a Family Cookbook. We have a lot of traditional recipes passed down from generations and I wanted to be sure they were passed down to our children and our children's children. It took a lot of work (I had to call my mother and grandmother for details, etc), but it was so worth it. I decided not to publish with a traditional "spine" because it was meant to add to over the years, so I used a 3 ring binder, with images on the front and back as well. I've expanded it personally to 3 binders now with my additions. But one section is dedicated to our traditional meals at holidays, with menus and then the recipes. Then it is sectioned up like any cookbook, appetizers/hors d'oeuvres, soups and salads, main entrees, sides, drinks, desserts, etc. Including TOC and index.

It's a special gift. I used family photos throughout.

Took me months, though. Probably like 6 months.


Well, this is weird.... Chicken In Milk with garlic and cinnamon. It's a Jamie Oliver recipe that sounds intriguing. In fact, I have a vague recollection of making it, but I didn't annotate the recipe (I always jot down notes for the first run-through of something non-standard), so maybe not. Hopefully I haven't posted it before...maybe that's why it seems so familiar. Anyway. I will be trying this soon.

I whipped this up because I was at a loss for what to do with a family pack of legs and thighs that were on sale for $0.99/lb. It is a perfect dish if you just need something simple and easy for the brats to eat. I would double the hot sauce if I were making this for myself. But, really, the proportions are just advisory. If you see something you like, double or triple it. And there is no garlic in there, which I will remedy the next time I make it, just because garlic is almost always a good thing to have in food. Because Vampires.

Oh....anyone have a better idea for a name for this?

Simple Marinated Oven Chicken


  • 4 ounces brown sugar
  • 2 ounces Louisiana Hot Sauce
  • 1 ounce balsamic vinegar
  • 1 minced red onion (small)
  • 6 ounces orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 4 ounces olive oil
  • 3 pounds legs and thighs, trimmed of excess fat and skin

    Whisk together all but olive oil until mixed. Then gradually add the olive oil to form a thin emulsion. It won't really get thick, but the goal is to incorporate the oil in the other ingredients.

    Marinate the chicken for 24 hours in the refrigerator, turning once or twice if you remember.

    Place skin side up on a rack over a baking sheet.

    Roast at 300° for 45 minutes, and then increase heat to 425° and cook for another 15 minutes.

    digg this
    posted by Open Blogger at 04:00 PM

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