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When There’s Trouble in the Kitchen, These Books Can Help

Break an Egg

This past Holiday season I received two interesting books about cooking: “How to Break an Egg” by the Editors, Contributors and Readers of Fine Cooking Magazine, and “12,167 Kitchen and Cooking Secrets” by Susan Sampson. The first volume has over 1,400 tips, fixes, substitutions and techniques. The latter is a huge trade paperback with over 700 pages of ideas.

At first I thought maybe somebody was trying to tell me something about my skills in the kitchen. Then I realized, every cook can use these ideas. While they have a lot of relatively simple items inside, they’re not really basic. I don’t consider myself a basic cook anymore, but I’m always on the lookout for neat ways to do something that will aid preparation, presentation and flavor. These two books have that category of skills, in spades.

Of course, no matter how experienced or well-trained you may be in the culinary arts, you can still have a dish misbehave. Both books show plenty of dish rescue (and face-saving) tricks. I’ve never had a preparation go bad on me, of course, so I looked through those sections from a purely theoretical perspective. They’re well-done, and if I hear of a friend or relative who’s in the middle of something and it’s not working, I’ll be able to chime in with a fix that just may save their day.

Neat, eh?

I think I’ll start a regular feature on one of the Underground’s sidebars where I can share these techniques. After all, everybody can benefit from great ideas in the kitchen…

Enjoy the (Quick Kitchen Tips) Heat!

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