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Archive for September, 2008

It’s apple pie season! Since we answer more questions on pie than any other cooking dilemma, here are the most common pie pitfalls: 1. Dough is too warm. Flaky pastry is the result of a cold dough hitting a hot oven. Plus, warm dough absorbs more flour. Flour does not add flavor! Be sure that […]

A longtime customer called to say, “It’s green tomato season and I can’t find your gratin of green tomato recipe. I love that dish and I really want to make it. Where is it?” Green tomatoes are not the first tomatoes of the season, but the last. The tomato plants have pooped out and the […]

Do we eat like this every night? I hope not. Tonight the kitchen gods fought me. We lit the charcoal … and thirty minutes later realized that the fire did not catch. I defrosted a wonderful dish … and discovered that freezing had destroyed the texture and made it inedible. In desparation to put some […]

In cooking class the other night, a student asked, “What should I wrap cheese in?” Being a smart-aleck, I responded, “cheesecloth!” “Will cheesecloth keep the cheese fresh for a longer time?” I don’t keep cheese in my refrigerator for a long time; I recommend buying and using it, not self-aging in your refrigerator. Use it […]

No one appreciates comfort food more than Chef Cary McDowell. Born in the South, Cary cooks the food you want to eat again and again. In just a few months after opening his restaurant, Revival has become a go-to favorite among St. Louis diners. Revival serves the kind of food St. Louisans really crave. Revival also offers […]

Dear Chef,  I have been cooking for over 50 years and have never deveined my shrimp. Never saw the real need for it. I love cooking and ethnic foods. Friends and family never complained. A couple of friends my age are shocked that I don’t devein. Are there many people who don’t devein? How important […]

No, I don’t live on the shores of a raging river, but I did this morning. The excess rain of Hurricane Ike blew through and dumped five inches of water onto our neighbor — a dry creek. Suddenly the creek water was way up. Okay, I’ve seen water before. But, an hour later, our back yard was […]

In redoing and then posting our new website, I learned what customers really liked about the old website. So by popular demand, here are the two most requested recipes. No surprise that they are all about the butter! At Kitchen Conservatory, we use unsalted Plugra Butter in all of our recipes. Why? Because Plugra tastes delicious! […]

Interested in food? Kitchen Conservatory is now hiring for Kitchen Assistants. Applicants should love food and love to cook. Job entails a 5-6 hour shift, which includes setting up for cooking classes, helping the chef-instructor, and cleaning up. Schedule is flexible, but the applicant must be available to work on nights and weekends. Fringe benefits: […]

Dear Chef, I’m trying to find out why we bother to pound chicken breast. It’s already very tender. Why can’t we just slice it to the thickness we want? Does the pounding somehow change it in a good way? Thanks for your time! Melissa There are two reasons to pound meat: to make the meat […]