Coach Chef

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seeahill
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Coach Chef

Post by seeahill » Wed Aug 28, 2019 2:59 am

Remember when every wannabe fitness guru labeled himself "coach?" Now, in the internet cooking world, every yahoo from the trailer park is "Chef" Tom or Rufus or "Chef" Clayton or Makena. Bogus Coach. Bogus Chef. It's a disgrace. A disgrace I tell you.
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by syaigh » Thu Aug 29, 2019 1:18 am

I'm Chef Coach Syaigh. I make a mean Key Lime Pie and often don't set off the fire alarm when I cook.
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by Schlegel » Thu Aug 29, 2019 9:29 pm

I could go into that, i mean, at least i did cook for a living for some years. Heck, my bio would look great!

Dad was a European chef, with small family farm.
Worked in private club my mom managed on weekends.
More cooking after i moved out.
Chem degree specializing in biochem.
Asst. Winemaker after college.
Medical researcher now with published papers.
Do nearly all the cooking for family so i totally relate to the daily grind of the suburban consumer.

I just fear my bullshitting skills are subpar, though. Need those for online riches.
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by nafod » Thu Aug 29, 2019 10:02 pm

If you’re from the south, you’re “Colonel”
Don’t believe everything you think.

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seeahill
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by seeahill » Fri Aug 30, 2019 3:35 am

Chef Shlegal,
What knives do I need for kitchen work. And how do I keep them sharp ?
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by Schlegel » Fri Aug 30, 2019 10:23 am

seeahill wrote:
Fri Aug 30, 2019 3:35 am
Chef Shlegal,
What knives do I need for kitchen work. And how do I keep them sharp ?
Well, actually... I do have opinions on this topic, if you really want to know. Better knife skills and a quality set of knives is probably the first and most fundamental thing I'd recommend to the home cook to make everday cooking faster, less frustrating, and more enjoyable. And even safer, too. Paradoxically, dull knives cause injury, as they require undue amounts of force to slice food.

If you seriously want advice I can absolutely give specific suggestions.
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by Fat Cat » Fri Aug 30, 2019 5:44 pm

What do you like to cook Schlegel?
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by seeahill » Fri Aug 30, 2019 11:42 pm

Thanks, Schlegel,
Actually, I have done a lot of research on kitchen knives (saw a lot of Youtube stuff from many "chefs," not to mention a few "blade-masters." Here's what I went with. Please let me know what you think. Wusthoff Classic Ikon set (Chef's knife, 7 inch utility, paring and bread knives and a block.)
I thought I'd gotten reasonably good with a sharpening steel (not a honing steel, a shapening steel.) But I popped for Wusthoff electric sharpener. I don't have the patience or skill for whetstones. Anyway, this is the first electric sharpener I've had that really works. It'll grind your blade down to a 14 degree angle and put a mean edge on it. I sharpened every old knife in the drawer until they all slid through paper and cut near-transparent tomato slices.
(A note: if you're thinking of an electric sharpener, the Wusthoff one is made by Chef's Choice and sharpens to 14 degrees. But you could buy the Chef's Choice Trizor XV for much less. It is the same machine but sharpens to a 15 degree angle.)
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Last edited by seeahill on Fri Aug 30, 2019 11:50 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by seeahill » Fri Aug 30, 2019 11:44 pm

Thanks, Schlegel,
Actually, I have done a lot of research on kitchen knives (saw a lot of Youtube stuff from many "chefs," not to mention a few "blade-masters." Here's what I went with. Please let me know what you think. Wusthoff set (Chef's knife, 7 inch utility, paring and bread knives.)
I thought I'd gotten reasonably good with a sharpening steel (not a honing steel, a shapening steel.) But I popped for Wusthoff electric sharpener. I don't have the patience or skill for whetstones. Anyway, this is the first electric sharpener I've had that really works. It'll grind your blade down to a 14 degree angle and put a mean edge on it. I sharpened every old knife in the drawer until they all slid through paper and cut near-transparent tomato slices.

(A note: if you're thinking of an electric sharpener, the Wusthoff one is made by Chef's Choice and sharpens to 14 degrees. But you could buy the Chef's Choice Trizor XV for much less. It is the same machine but sharpens to a 15 degree angle.)
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by Schlegel » Sat Aug 31, 2019 1:11 am

Fat Cat wrote:
Fri Aug 30, 2019 5:44 pm
What do you like to cook Schlegel?
Well I have little kids, so the cheap answer is "quick food".

Most important real answer would be be fresh food, cooked well and served promptly. Big influences would be the French chef tradition like my father was trained in (Escoffier was his bible) but I borrow freely from international dishes, and Mexi-Cali from dishes my Grandmother made when I was a kid.

If I just say dishes, it doesn't really get across what I do because it isn't the recipe that matters so much as how you execute it. The recipe is only instructions.

Whenever possible I use local fresh veggies and fruit. We get a delivery of 2 boxes a week from a cooperative. There is a marked difference in flavor.

Anything that can be grilled outside is. The usual meats, but also what would otherwise be a small roast works well (use low heat). The kids love grilled veggies. I love charcoal, but when you are short on time propane wins. Sirloin and veggie kabobs are real popular... cook fast, meat is to be no more than medium at the worst. Find a Za'atar blend you like. That's the secret to tasting like middle eastern restaurants make it.

A lot of families have spaghetti night, right? Keep onions and pre peeled garlic cloves on hand at all time (i buy a big jar at costco and freeze them in baggies) then use a jar of grocery store sauce as a quick base... brown some beef if you want, add onions and garlic, I grow fresh basil, oregano, and thyme on the porch to throw in along with a splash of red wine and now it actually tastes like something. I like a dash of crushed red pepper flakes and grated parmesan.

I make a very good schnitzel, chicken or pork tenderloin are best. When done, just gets a spritz of lemon juice and some salt. Made right, schnitzel is moist, tender, with a golden crunchy exterior. Not greasy or heavy at all. Goes great with a good German Reisling. Real German cuisine not like what people imagine from tv/movies.

Some things sound like nothing, like grilled hamburgers, or a roast chicken or beef roast, but I get compliments from amazed friends because they are much more tender and juicy than they are used to because I don't use the typical 1950's home methods. Like roasts, the slow roast I do is actually the old traditional restaurant method like you would do in a classy prime rib joint, but home ec classes have taught everyone for decades to roast at 375 till everthing is gray and bleh.

It's all in the execution..

Like chicken and dumplings. Do you hate it? It's made poorly a LOT. Try following Alton Brown's version. It's very very good. Brown is excellent for learning the scientific principles and having followable recipes.

For overall philosophy of cooking I like Jacques Pepin. French/American fusion is how he sees himself at this point. Strong focus on good ingredients prepared simply and actually enjoyed. No bombast or puffery. First poached egg I ever thought was delicious was his technique.
"Why do we need a kitchen when we have a phone?"

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Re: Coach Chef

Post by Fat Cat » Sat Aug 31, 2019 1:29 am

That all sounds great! I completely agree about the preeminent importance of quality ingredients and proper execution. The most humble foods, like you said a hamburger for instance, can be utterly epic when well made. My wife and I both love to cook, she cooks all week and then I cook on the weekends. I'm very restless by nature and cooking for the family is a nice way for me to stay occupied while hanging out with the family; I just pour a cocktail and zone out and everybody's happy when I stumble out with delicious food :)

I used to cook a ton of Asian foods, as that is what's popular here, but over they years I have gravitated to more Mediterranean foods: Southern French, Italian, Lebanese all figure prominently. Things we've cooked in the past week:

-Homemade pesto with whole wheat pasta;
-Roast chicken stuffed with herbs, garlic, and lemons with new potatoes;
-Udon salad with roast beets and hardboiled eggs;
-Quiche with roasted red peppers and ham;
-Turkey and spinach sliders.

I would love to try some of that schnitzel; my wife's mother (PBUH) was trained in the Austro-Hungarian cooking style and made some divine snicla (their version) that were to kill for. Just thinking of them makes me wistful. I try not to eat much fried food but damn, when it's something like that, I will never believe it's bad for you.
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by Schlegel » Sat Aug 31, 2019 2:29 am

Funny you should mention Austro-Hungarians... I used to cook alongside a Hapsburg. The son of one of the ex patriate arch dukes. We went to college together and worked part-time in the same kitchen. That reminds me, I love a good goulash but have not made one in a while. When my dad was younger and still hunting I would make it from venison tenderloin he brought home. So flavorful! I still always keep a few bottles of Hungarian Tokaji Aszu in my cellar for special occasions.
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by Schlegel » Sat Aug 31, 2019 2:48 am

Seeahill, you have chosen wisely. My set is Henkels, as my dad is partial to them and they were a gift from him some quarter century ago but Wusthoff is up to snuff as well. Germany has been producing quality blades for a thousand years, the best surgical steel is still bought from Solingen factories.
That basic set, chef, utility, bread, and paring knife will do 99.99% of all the work anyone needs. Some people like a boning knife but I cook more than most and haven't boned a thing in 20 years. I just don't think it's needed these days unless you are a fresh whole fish kind of guy.

Whetstones, well the pros will poo-poo sharpening devices but given how much less a home cook uses knives I think it will take 20 years to put the wear on that a pro does in one year. So you won't need to true up the edge very often at all, and that's the thing a whetstone does that other sharpening methods don't. I've been using my Henkels 25 years and only now am nearing the point of needing to put a new straight edge on them.

This assumes you follow the guidelines for protecting your edge, like never cutting on metal, or worse, ceramic surfaces.
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by nafod » Sat Aug 31, 2019 2:17 pm

You dumb fucks should build a pizza oven.

We’re making buffalo chicken pizza with drizzled ranch dressing tonight. My wife doesn’t know it yet.
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by powerlifter54 » Sat Aug 31, 2019 4:03 pm

Big green Egg, the right spice mix, and hawking the temperature as we slow cook has been a great addition to what we eat.

Got the good knives.

Got a few temperature gauges.

Just ordered a meat grinder to get a better mix ground beef wise.

Grow a lot of my own salad stuff.

And am not afraid to try things after watching a pro do it on YouTube. Then do it a few more times.

Favorites so far
spatchcocked turkey
Smoked Beef Tenderloin.
Spaghetti Carbonara
Shrimp and Grits
Cajun Pasta
Tomato and Cucumber Salad
Stuffed French Toast
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by Sangoma » Sat Aug 31, 2019 9:42 pm

My latest obsession is sous vide circulator. A cheat way to make incredible steak on the run. Total cooking time is not short, but personal involvement is in minutes.

Camado Joe, a Chinese knock off of the Big Green Egg works several times a week too.
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by Sangoma » Sat Aug 31, 2019 9:46 pm

I am still half asleep, and when I read Nafod's post about his pizza my mind was picturing "buffalo chicken". A large stocky chicken on four legs, with no feathers and smooth skin. Probably horns on males...
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by seeahill » Mon Sep 02, 2019 1:14 am

Schlegal, you're absolutely right. My new knives arrived the other day. What a pleasure to dice onions, chop carrots etc. I used to avoid cooking dinners that involved a lot of knife skills. Now I'm looking for recipes that require a knife work. As a guy who worked with subpar knives all his life, I can hardly tell what a pleasure this is.
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by Schlegel » Mon Sep 02, 2019 2:51 am

seeahill wrote:
Mon Sep 02, 2019 1:14 am
Schlegal, you're absolutely right. My new knives arrived the other day. What a pleasure to dice onions, chop carrots etc. I used to avoid cooking dinners that involved a lot of knife skills. Now I'm looking for recipes that require a knife work. As a guy who worked with subpar knives all his life, I can hardly tell what a pleasure this is.
I've been an observer for this moment before, when helping friends and family prep for a big dinner, and I let them borrow one of my knives. The moment when they realize how much extra work they have been doing all along. The same principle applies to other kitchen equipment, too, but nothing else is quite as dominant an interface between you and your food.
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Re: Coach Chef

Post by syaigh » Wed Sep 04, 2019 9:53 am

The porch herb garden makes a huge difference for me. Fresh herbs are invaluable. And I need to get back on the veggie box thing. I have squirrels that have made it impossible to keep a proper garden so I accept payment from some of my clients in the form of fresh vegetables from their gardens. I also have a kid I train whose mom pays me in fresh honey from their hives.

For those of you with tomatoes about to rot on the vine, this soup is transcendent: https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina ... pe-1948528
Miss Piggy wrote:Never eat more than you can lift.

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