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Paul Winalski

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Paul Winalski » Tue Aug 11, 2020 7:20 pm

DanS wrote:That's called "Warmed -over-flavor. Seriouseats.com did a while back. Check it out https://www.seriouseats.com/2017/08/what-is-warmed-over-flavor-leftover-chicken-meat.html.


Interesting article. So it's oxidation of fats that is the culprit here, just like the rancidity process.

But their explanation of unsaturated fatty acids is way off base. Fats consist of a molecule of glycerol esterified to three molecules of fatty acid. Saturated fatty acids have the general chemical formula:

H3C-CH2-(CH2-CH2)n-CH2-COOH

Various different fatty acids have different values for n. n=12 for palmitic acid, which as the name implies is the main fatty acid in palm oil. These fatty acids are "saturated" in the sense that each carbon in the chain is bonded to the maximum number of hydrogens. Unsaturated fatty acids have one or more double-bonded carbons:

H3C-CH2-(CH2-CH2)m-CH=CH-(CH2-CH2)n-CH2-COOH

This is a mono-unsaturated fatty acid. Polyunsaturated fatty acids have more than one of these double bonds. One difference between carbon-carbon single bonds and double bonds is that single bonds can rotate whereas double bonds are rigid. a -HC=CH- group can exist in two configurations. The one most commonly found in nature has both hydrogens on the same side of the double bond. This is called the cis- configuration. The other one has one hydrogen on each side of the double bond. This is called the trans- configuration. Fats containing a fatty acid with a trans- double bond are called trans-fats and they're the bad guys implicated in heart disease.

Each of the two carbons participating in the double bond has three bonds total, and these are at 120-degree angles. The double bond thus introduces a "kink" in the long chain of the fatty acid. Saturated fats have no kinks. In the solid form, they're all lined up next to each other. Unsaturated fats don't line up as readily. This is why saturated fats (such as the depot fats in mammals and birds) solidify at higher temperatures than unsaturated fats (which remain as liquid oils at lower temperatures).

-Paul W.
Last edited by Paul Winalski on Wed Aug 12, 2020 11:13 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Jeff Grossman

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jeff Grossman » Tue Aug 11, 2020 7:39 pm

Very cool, Paul, thanks for the deep dive. I seem to recall that lipids (e.g., body fat) are structured as long repeating chains -- which makes it easy for the body to stash more goodies on my waist.

Does the kinked structure of unsaturated fats show up in their cooking properties?
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Paul Winalski » Wed Aug 12, 2020 10:42 am

Jeff Grossman wrote:Very cool, Paul, thanks for the deep dive. I seem to recall that lipids (e.g., body fat) are structured as long repeating chains -- which makes it easy for the body to stash more goodies on my waist.


There are two main things that make lipids such an efficient energy storage medium. First, they're almost entirely carbon and hydrogen--almost no oxygen. In contrast, carbohydrates have one oxygen per carbon. So lipids have more energy-producing reducing power per unit mass. Secondly, storage carbohydrates such as starch and glycogen bind a significant amount of water to themselves.

Does the kinked structure of unsaturated fats show up in their cooking properties?


Yes, mainly due to how it affects the melting point. Unsaturated fats melt at a lower temperature than saturated fats, meaning that at room temperature unsaturated fats are oils versus solids. Consider butter fat (saturated) versus olive oil (unsaturated). I know someone who tried making brioche with vegetable oil. The texture came out all wrong. Ditto with some pie crusts and the dough for Chinese curried meat pies. You need solid fat--preferably lard--for those.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jeff Grossman » Wed Aug 12, 2020 12:12 pm

Paul Winalski wrote:There are two main things that make lipids such an efficient energy storage medium. First, they're almost entirely carbon and hydrogen--almost no oxygen.

So, to liberate the stored energy, we have to still be breathing. :)

Secondly, storage carbohydrates such as starch and glycogen bind a significant amount of water to themselves.

What's the bennie of that?
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Paul Winalski » Wed Aug 12, 2020 3:22 pm

Jeff Grossman wrote:So, to liberate the stored energy, we have to still be breathing. :)


One other thing about fat is that the body can convert carbohydrates to fat, but it's a one-way trip. Most animals lack the enzymes to convert fatty acids into carbohydrates. Plants can do it, though. That's why a lot of seeds are so oily.

Secondly, storage carbohydrates such as starch and glycogen bind a significant amount of water to themselves.

What's the bennie of that?


There isn't any benefit to it. It's just falls out of the chemistry. All those -OH groups on carbohydrates can hydrogen bond to water molecules. If you've ever made a roux, you've probably noticed, or been warned about, the steam that gets released when you put the flour into the hot fat. Flour is mostly starch, and the heat causes the bound water to be released. And every baker knows that flour can absorb water from the air, especially when it's humid, and because of that the amount of water needed to make a dough varies from batch to batch.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Fri Aug 14, 2020 11:11 am

I thawed out a rack of lamb last night and at the last minute decided to cut it into chops and heavily season them with lime juice, soy sauce, garlic and vermouth then flame-grill them on the indoor grill. Wow were they good--perfect with a bulgar wheat pilaf, sliced tomatoes and a 2000 Brane-Cantenac.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Fri Aug 14, 2020 2:53 pm

Tonight: chicken kebabs. Grilled over open flame with lots of onion and bell pepper slices on them too. Something I should make all summer long but I don't think I've made kebabs of any kind in several years.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Paul Winalski » Fri Aug 14, 2020 5:36 pm

Gotta get rid of those cooked lo mein noodles somehow, so this weekend I'll be making zhajiangmian (Beijing meat sauce noodles) and spaghetti (well, lo mein, actually) with sausage and Italian peppers.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Sat Aug 15, 2020 12:04 pm

Okay, so yesterday afternoon we dropped off a wine delivery at a friend's while on our way further afield to pick up salt for our water softener, and they invited us to drop in for a glass of wine on our return trip home. We did, and they invited us to stay for dinner. So my shishkebabs didn't happen (will today), and instead we had a mega dose of....are you ready?...wait for it... Warmed Over Flavor!!!

They served ribs. Costco-prepared babybacks which hadn't sold the first day they'd been put out, so were marked out and put back out on the second day when they were purchased by my friends who stashed them in the freezer on arrival home then baked off for our dinner last night. I had to drown mine in BBQ sauce, which I would not normally do.

It sure brought home the fact that I was given these supertaster taste buds in order to detect spoilage and protect everyone in my cave from getting ill.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Paul Winalski » Sat Aug 15, 2020 2:06 pm

Jenise wrote:So my shishkebabs didn't happen (will today), and instead we had a mega dose of....are you ready?...wait for it... Warmed Over Flavor!!!


:shock:

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Sat Aug 15, 2020 2:11 pm

Speaking of Warmed Over Flavor, on reflection I'm surprised that the article DanS referred us to on Serious Eats didn't include a mention of all those late November leftover turkey dishes where most people, including moi, would have had their first introduction to that flavor. My mother made "turkey curry", still curdles my tummy to remember it.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jeff Grossman » Sat Aug 15, 2020 4:36 pm

Jenise wrote:So my shishkebabs didn't happen (will today), and instead we had a mega dose of....are you ready?...wait for it... Warmed Over Flavor!!!

Gak.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jeff Grossman » Sat Aug 15, 2020 4:39 pm

Jenise wrote:Speaking of Warmed Over Flavor, on reflection I'm surprised that the article DanS referred us to on Serious Eats didn't include a mention of all those late November leftover turkey dishes where most people, including moi, would have had their first introduction to that taste. My mother made "turkey curry", still curdles my tummy to remember it.

Turkey often smells funny to me, leftover or not. There's a minerally / metallic sort of thing which is very frequent in commercial birds (maybe the injected brine?) but it even happens once in a while in my lovely farm-raised heritage species birds.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Larry Greenly » Sat Aug 15, 2020 9:45 pm

Tonight, lobster tail over quinoa, a tossed salad, and washed down with an NTV Trinchera Sauvignon Blanc.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Larry Greenly » Sun Aug 16, 2020 10:09 pm

For me tonight, bbq pork ribs, corn-on-the-cob, real cukes and tomatoes; for Edie, the same, except swap the ribs for a Lebanon bologna sandwich on rye with pepper jack cheese, mustard, lettuce and tomatoes. Boar's Head Lebanon Bologna, not the best brand but okay. The order of magnitude best brand is Seltzer's. Order some if you like smoke. When I go to PA, I bring back a whole chub.

Buy the original, not the sweet stuff IMO. https://www.seltzerslebanon.com/
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Mon Aug 17, 2020 1:59 pm

Larry, if the quantity weren't daunting, I'd be tempted to order that. I fondly remember Lebanon Bologna from childhood, although it's likely that it was Oscar Meyer and nothing as good as the Seltzer sounds.

Last night we had a cold dinner of kale salad and cold smoked pork chops with a California syrah. Tonight, friends are coming over for a London Broil and creamed corn*. She's on a low fiber diet due to an as-yet undiagnosed systemic issue, so that will fit in well. I'll probably just make a plate of marinated cucumber slices for the other three of us. Maybe she can eat some, too, but greens are out.

*Corn--white and violet kernels. SO PRETTY!!!!!
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Larry Greenly » Mon Aug 17, 2020 2:37 pm

Jenise wrote:Larry, if the quantity weren't daunting, I'd be tempted to order that. I fondly remember Lebanon Bologna from childhood, although it's likely that it was Oscar Meyer and nothing as good as the Seltzer sounds.



I've had Oscar Meyer Lebanon Bologna also, and it's a very pale reflection of the real stuff. Seltzer's is the only one. Perhaps you can convince your deli to carry some.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jeff Grossman » Mon Aug 17, 2020 3:06 pm

I don't know Seltzer's and I can't quiet tell what kind of meat it really is -- it does not fit my image of bologna (=> read, infantilized version of mortadella). It looks a bit like Hebrew National. 8)

My supermarket is carrying a new brand, Alex's Russian. They have both veal bologna and tongue bologna. I've tried the veal and it was tasteless. I'm not encouraged to try much more (e.g., hot dogs, Vienna sausage, several salamis).

My current nibble-of-choice is an uncured lamb/pork blend salami with za'atar.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Larry Greenly » Mon Aug 17, 2020 3:53 pm

Jeff Grossman wrote:I don't know Seltzer's and I can't quiet tell what kind of meat it really is -- it does not fit my image of bologna (=> read, infantilized version of mortadella). It looks a bit like Hebrew National. 8)



You're thinking of that finely ground, tasteless, pink stuff. Seltzer's is coarsely ground beef and heavily smoked for a few days. Giganto difference. No comparison, whatsoever, except for the "bologna" word.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:04 pm

[quote="Larry Greenly]
You're thinking of that finely ground, tasteless, pink stuff. Seltzer's is coarsely ground beef and heavily smoked for a few days. Giganto difference. No comparison, whatsoever, except for the "bologna" word.[/quote]

And it's sour. Both smokey and sour, which I loved, though the Oscar Meyer version would likely have been fake smoke flavor.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Paul Winalski » Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:20 pm

Yeah, Lebanon bologna bears the same relationship to Italian bologna as American chop suey does to American-Chinese chop suey. That is to say, practically none.

I loved Lebanon bologna as a kid. I don't remember which brand we had, though. I'll have to see if I can find Seltzer's.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Peter May » Tue Aug 18, 2020 6:19 am

Because of an ordering mistake we didn't get the aubergine for our usual pasta sauce , so instead last night I made a store cupboard classic - Puttenesca*.

Boy, it was good. Strong rustic flavours. With a side salad overstocked with tomatoes from the garden glut: Tumbling Tom (red) Sungold (orange) Chocolate Cherry (mahogany) Gardeners Delight ( red), all mouth sized, so uncut.

*tinned anchovies in EVOO melted into a paste in a hot pan (gives subtle meaty/umami flavour to sauce, not fishy), halved stoned black olives & capers in a tomato and basil sauce, then penne past tipped in and stirred around till thoroughly mixed. Served with Italian Barbera
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Tue Aug 18, 2020 9:53 am

Puttanesca seems to be a favorite around the world, Peter.

Last night we had a London Broil (with marinated cucumbers and creamed corn on the side). It brought up a question you can probably answer: do they know what a London Broil is in London?

If the answer's no, what we mean by that here is one big thick steak for all, around 3 lbs, sliced into thinnish strips. When I was a kid, Top Sirloin steaks were always cut whole and called Top Sirloin at the standard 1" thickness and London Broil when cut about two inches thick. You were expected to cut up the standard whole sirloin into steak sized pieces for your family. Now, up here in northern Washington at least, store butchers package Top Round as London Broil. And here Top Sirloin is never packaged whole--they trim it to death and pre-cut it into steak-sized portions. To get what I wanted for a London broil, I had to call two different stores to find a butcher who readily understood my request (whole, with fat cap). At the first store I called I got a clueless young girl who insisted that if I wanted London Broil I needed Top Round--I had to give up talking to her and call a different store. The typical consumer here thinks that London Broil is a cut--it's not, it's a treatment. They have no idea what they're buying. And clueless young girls who work in meat departments these days have no idea that things have ever been different than they are here and now.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Thu Aug 20, 2020 2:58 pm

Last night, we had a superb meatless risotto featuring leeks, mushrooms and ribbons of raddichio with a real Open That Bottle kind of wine, a CdP blanc inspired piece of Northwest perfection, my last Reynvaan Queens Road white.

This morning I woke up wanting MEAT. So where I don't often make breakfast I went ahead with a British breakfast inspired by the presence of cured organic British style back bacon from Oregon. With that, scrambled eggs and butter beans sauteed with onions and fresh kale, a delightful spin on another British custom.

Tonight: Enchilada pie with beef, onion, cheddar and a NM red sauce.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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