Enhancing ordinary food

Apparently, people like to eat.

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Hammer » Thu Nov 15, 2007 2:19 pm UTC

Ren wrote:I generally mix cinnamon into my hot chocolate.

I also like a pumpkin pie spice mix of cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and ginger. Sometimes a dash of vanilla too.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Thu Nov 15, 2007 4:26 pm UTC

Ren wrote:I generally mix cinnamon into my hot chocolate.

Doi. All smart and attractive people do that.

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Angelene » Thu Nov 15, 2007 4:30 pm UTC

I'm not sure this entirely counts, but I get healthy, low cal pizza, less than 340cals a pizza, and instantly double the calories with brie and roasted red bell peppers. And I still feel virtuous because hey it's a healthy pizza, right. Sooooo good, though. I think I could be a vegetarian except for that I could never forego cheese and vegetarian cheese is not good.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Zohar » Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:05 pm UTC

CaraInFrames wrote:I'm not sure this entirely counts, but I get healthy, low cal pizza, less than 340cals a pizza, and instantly double the calories with brie and roasted red bell peppers. And I still feel virtuous because hey it's a healthy pizza, right. Sooooo good, though. I think I could be a vegetarian except for that I could never forego cheese and vegetarian cheese is not good.


You mean "vegan". Vegetarians (such as myself) eat eggs and dairy products. Vegans don't eat anything that comes from animals, include, as you mentioned, cheese. I have a vegan friend who eats honey, strangely enough.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:15 pm UTC

Well, honey doesn't come OUT of the bee.... it's what happens when the bee spits on pollen, I think. It doesn't hurt the animals in any way to take the honey, although I suppose the bees could sue you for theft of personal property.

Also, I demand my pizzas with extra murder. Apologies to all vegans.

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Angelene » Thu Nov 15, 2007 7:19 pm UTC

Zohar wrote:
CaraInFrames wrote:I'm not sure this entirely counts, but I get healthy, low cal pizza, less than 340cals a pizza, and instantly double the calories with brie and roasted red bell peppers. And I still feel virtuous because hey it's a healthy pizza, right. Sooooo good, though. I think I could be a vegetarian except for that I could never forego cheese and vegetarian cheese is not good.


You mean "vegan". Vegetarians (such as myself) eat eggs and dairy products. Vegans don't eat anything that comes from animals, include, as you mentioned, cheese. I have a vegan friend who eats honey, strangely enough.


Hmmm, I'm sure there's something about rennet being used in most cheeses which make it unsuitable for vegetarians.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby pollywog » Thu Nov 15, 2007 8:19 pm UTC

Mighty Jalapeno wrote:Well, honey doesn't come OUT of the bee.... it's what happens when the bee spits on pollen, I think. It doesn't hurt the animals in any way to take the honey, although I suppose the bees could sue you for theft of personal property.


It does hurt the animals, because you are taking their food. Most vegans don't eat animal products because it is theft, and not given willingly. By taking the bees honey, they can't feed their maggots, and so some of the maggots may die. By taking the cow's milk, it can't give it to the calf, calf might get sick. I don't fully understand it myself, but they seem to like it, and vegan food can be very nice. The only animal food products that vegans are ok with are human produced ones, like ejaculate, and breast milk. These have to be given willingly, and unsurprisingly, many don't try.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Thu Nov 15, 2007 8:25 pm UTC

I wasn't talking about milk, just the honey. The honey that is taken is done so because it hasn't been used for the larva yet. The milk that is taken is largely taken from cows that don't have kids that need it, but are kept lactating to maximize milk production.

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Girl™ » Thu Nov 15, 2007 8:36 pm UTC

CaraInFrames wrote:Hmmm, I'm sure there's something about rennet being used in most cheeses which make it unsuitable for vegetarians.


The only way to get rennet used to be from calves' stomachs. I'm pretty sure it's widely synthesized now, so no animal is killed specifically to make cheese.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby pollywog » Thu Nov 15, 2007 9:41 pm UTC

Mighty Jalapeno wrote:I wasn't talking about milk, just the honey. The honey that is taken is done so because it hasn't been used for the larva yet. The milk that is taken is largely taken from cows that don't have kids that need it, but are kept lactating to maximize milk production.


But it still might be used for the larva. You're basically stealing from the bees.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Thu Nov 15, 2007 9:47 pm UTC

Your carrots could be feeding rabbits. You're stealing from them.

Yes, I know, there's a flaw, the carrots didn't do the farming, but still. Without the honey, the bees simply don't make as many larva. Most apiaries work on an alternating system, letting each hive reproduce often enough to keep everything working just fine.

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Hammer » Thu Nov 15, 2007 10:01 pm UTC

I believe there is a Vegetarians: Viable Lifestyle or Root of All Evil type of thread already available in Serious Business.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Thu Nov 15, 2007 10:07 pm UTC

I shall shut up then. :)

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Belial » Thu Nov 15, 2007 10:17 pm UTC

I found out that spreading peanut butter across the top layer completely transforms the whole baklava experience. For the better.

Also, for the messier.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby idont_know12 » Thu Nov 15, 2007 11:25 pm UTC

Peanut butter and butter sandwich.

Obviously, parmesan on anything that already has a cheese of some sort; and some foods that don't have cheese to begin with, such as spaghetti.

Also, this idea popped into my head the other day: Sweet lemon and ginger pork. Sounds excellent. Too bad we have no pork... or lemon... or fresh ginger (just ginger powder).

Dissolve vitamin C supplements into Koolaid to raise the acidity and health value. (Sugar can be added to compensate for tartness, but I don't think that's really necessary.)

You know what's good? Asiago bread, with a thin layer of mayonnaise, parmesan sprinkled to adhere to the mayo, deli-sliced turkey and ham (50/50), and havarti cheese (or its lesser cousin, provolone). VERY GOOD.

Oatmeal in your hamburgers: varies the texture and makes a given quantity of beef go a longer way.

That's all for now.

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Zohar » Fri Nov 16, 2007 2:23 pm UTC

To regular lemonade add some lemon peel, use brown sugar instead of white and add grated ginger root. I guess this is more like a recipe...
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Hammer » Fri Nov 16, 2007 2:26 pm UTC

Peanut butter gently warmed in the microwave with some honey stirred into it makes for yummy apple dip.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby dazomby » Fri Nov 16, 2007 2:45 pm UTC

A pinch of ground cardamom or cinnamon in the coffee powder when brewing is nice.
Chipotle tabasco enhances most edible things.

Once we had orange-flavoured olive oil. It was divine on pasta or salad.

Also, when making pasta, put some garlic in the dough for added goodness.

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Bakemaster » Fri Nov 16, 2007 2:50 pm UTC

Zohar wrote:To regular lemonade add some lemon peel, use brown sugar instead of white and add grated ginger root. I guess this is more like a recipe...

When you say add some lemon peel, do you mean a curl/strip of it taken off with a potato peeler, or do you mean grated bits small enough to drink? The skin of citrus fruits is split into the zest (outer, colorful part with natural oils that make it flavorful) and the pith (inner, white part that's not useful in a culinary sense). So if you want to grate it, we'd say zest rather than peel.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Zohar » Fri Nov 16, 2007 7:14 pm UTC

Bakemaster wrote:
Zohar wrote:To regular lemonade add some lemon peel, use brown sugar instead of white and add grated ginger root. I guess this is more like a recipe...

When you say add some lemon peel, do you mean a curl/strip of it taken off with a potato peeler, or do you mean grated bits small enough to drink? The skin of citrus fruits is split into the zest (outer, colorful part with natural oils that make it flavorful) and the pith (inner, white part that's not useful in a culinary sense). So if you want to grate it, we'd say zest rather than peel.


You're right, I'm used to the names in Hebrew, it's sometimes difficult to translate. I use a potato peeler to peel thin strips of the lemon zest. You could just as much grate it.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby heidih » Tue Nov 20, 2007 5:42 pm UTC

Wasabi mixed with sour cream or craime fraiche and drizzled as a sauce on almost anything savory. Spicy and pretty. Drop black sesame seeds on it and it's gorgeous.

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Bakemaster » Tue Nov 20, 2007 6:40 pm UTC

CatProximity treated me to a hot chocolate with peppermint in it today and I have to say, it was splentastic. They just had a shaker with peppermint crystals in it, so it must be simple to do at home.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Savage Karate Attack » Tue Nov 20, 2007 11:43 pm UTC

This isn't exactly gourmand material, but...

If you put fire sauce in your nacho cheese at Taco Bell and stir it around with a chip, it transforms the nacho-eating experience. I have not met a single person yet who tried it and didn't absolutely love it.

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby bbctol » Sat Nov 24, 2007 4:00 pm UTC

Add every spice you can find. Ginger, cinnamon, paprika and cardamom pancakes? Delish.

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby parkaboy » Sat Nov 24, 2007 11:47 pm UTC

Belial wrote:I found out that spreading peanut butter across the top layer completely transforms the whole baklava experience. For the better.

Also, for the messier.



orly? i love peanut butter. i love baklava. i can get both very easily. i will try this. i'm already messy enough when eating baklava (i hope they got those nuts out of the hotel chair...) so this will be an ADVENTURE!!

ramen is damn ordinary - i add chicken and tons of veggies (carrots, celery, peppers, snow peas) and my own spices (usually a mix of different peppers) to make it more like real soup and less like bland noodles in water.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby CorranH » Sun Nov 25, 2007 5:00 pm UTC

Ren wrote:I generally mix cinnamon into my hot chocolate.


I must disclaimerize this by saying that I've never actually tried this, but I've got (I JUST THOUGHT OF SOMETHING GREAT THAT'S COMPLETELY UNRELATED TO THIS! YES!) a recipe for cider that suggests taking a cinnamon stick and stirring it up at the end, then using it as a straw. Sounds yummy, and I'm sure the same principle would work for hot chocolate.

For me, I'm not quite sure if this is an 'enhancement' or a 'recipe', but it seems a bit too simple to be a recipe, so I'll put it here:

Heat up a skillet
Melt a little butter in the skillet
Take a piece of bread (something thick, like a good thick piece of sourdough, or a 'French toast' cut piece of white is best), and cut/tear a hole in the middle, roughly two inches around
Put the bread with the hole in the middle in the skillet
Crack an egg into the hole
Cook on both sides
Eat
???
Profit!
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby parkaboy » Sun Nov 25, 2007 5:42 pm UTC

Oooo i'm hungry and that sounds easy.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby CorranH » Sun Nov 25, 2007 5:49 pm UTC

parkaboy wrote:Oooo i'm hungry and that sounds easy.


It's easy and delicious. One you do the bread, which takes all of ten seconds, it's basically just frying an egg. In fact, I think I'll have one now, too.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Zohar » Sun Nov 25, 2007 8:37 pm UTC

It's called "an egg in a nest" in Hebrew. Usually made (here) with two pieces of bread - one whole and another with a hole in it (using a cup).
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby parkaboy » Sun Nov 25, 2007 8:39 pm UTC

i just called it eggy-bread.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Zohar » Mon Nov 26, 2007 3:55 pm UTC

Another childhood favorite of mine (I haven't had it in, I guess, around 15 years...) is soft-boiling an egg (3 mins. in boiling water), putting it in a cup and then taking some bread, ripping it to pieces and also putting it in the cup.

It's called, appropriately, "an egg in a cup with bread" (which sounds a lot more fluent in Hebrew).
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Bakemaster » Mon Nov 26, 2007 7:22 pm UTC

Also "eggy in a basket" or "egg in a hole" depending on who you ask.

The problem with using a cinnamon stick as a straw is that usually they're not curled tightly enough for a proper seal. It's fun to try anyway.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby d33p » Mon Nov 26, 2007 7:23 pm UTC

It is, however, fun to use a Twizzler for a straw. Cola + licorice = awesomesauce.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby b.i.o » Tue Dec 04, 2007 6:44 am UTC

Good pesto on a burger is amazing. In fact, good pesto on a lot of things is amazing.

Copious (and I do mean copious) amounts of black pepper are my trick for dealing with bland steaks. I use various hot sauces on a bunch of different foods as well.

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby sunkistbabe1 » Tue Dec 04, 2007 6:51 am UTC

Hammer wrote:This thread is about simple little tricks to make ordinary food into a special treat.


A dash of cinnamon in the coffee grounds
A Dash Sesame Oil in almost any stir-fry or asian style meal
Parmesan on almost any pasta (real stuff)
Worcestershire for steak marinade
Bajan Hot sauce with Mayo for a sandwich spread (good with mustard and relish mixed in)
Small amounts of goat cheese in anything 'melty'
Small amount of ginger (powder or real) and honey in whipping cream before whipping it up for a dessert (aaaawwweesome on pumpkin pie)
Crushed peppercorns crusted around outside of a steak


Heh... :oops:

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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby MFHodge » Thu Dec 06, 2007 4:48 pm UTC

A splash of truffle oil in macaroni and cheese.

Also, my wife was making pancakes and we didn't have any milk so she used Egg Nog instead, with tasty results.
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Re: Enhancing ordinary food

Postby Kawa » Thu Dec 06, 2007 5:50 pm UTC

The cinnamon in hot chocolate thing is a total YES. The cafe attached to my college used to sell it on Tuesdays as a special, called "Mexican Hot Chocolate" (or something), and I am hooked. Now I just ask for a shot of their cinnamon liquidy thing in my hot chocolate.

On Asian-style noodles, add soy sauce and lemon juice (or for best results, Filipino toyomansi.)
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