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Tag Archives: The Curious Cook

Just listened to this weeks Fresh Air featuring Harold McGee. The podcast is chock-full Some really fascinating things about the science and chemistry of cooking. Some interesting points:

  • Salt actually helps the flavor of food by encouraging foods to release aromas.
  • Vegetables and thin fish are actually cooked in microwaves very efficiently, and if done well, more efficiently than cooking them on a stove.
  • (One of my favorite food anecdotes) MSG is meant to imitate the flavor the Japanese call Umami, which is sort of an aged salt flavor that usually is restricted to foods like expensive aged Parmesan cheeses. (It’s definately in the chips at Jimmy Johns).
  • -It’s actually better to put spice and herbs on when the dish is at serving temperature in terms of bringing out that flavor, instead of just letting the herbs and spices meld into the dish and cooking them for a long time.
  • The way that meat is cooked in Chinese restaurants, by cutting it into small pieces and cooking it at extremely hot temperatures in a Wok that cook the meat through within 15-17 seconds, is actually probably the best way to bring out the flavors of meat.

There are even more tips on the website and in the podcast, so check it out. You can also find the book by clicking here.

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