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Fess up: Doctoring recipes
Old 11-27-2013, 11:53 AM   #1
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Fess up: Doctoring recipes

I'm a guy who never sees a recipe that can't be "enhanced". Other than a few "sacred" recipes from my mother, I don't lose a chance to add a bit extra garlic or pepper to most recipes I come across.

I'm mean, come on! 1 clove of garlic!!! When 3 maybe 4 will do nicely??
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Old 11-27-2013, 12:03 PM   #2
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One clove of garlic is like one piece of popcorn.
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Old 11-27-2013, 12:07 PM   #3
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Almost always. Many times because we don't have an ingredient that doesn't seem crucial to the recipe on hand. Being from Vermont, I commonly substitute Vermont maple syrup for sweet things in a recipe like sugar, honey, brown sugar, etc.
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Old 11-27-2013, 12:19 PM   #4
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One clove of garlic is like one piece of popcorn.
LOVE THAT!!! I gotta remember every time I throw in a nice dollop of minced garlic.
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Old 11-27-2013, 12:27 PM   #5
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Another garlic lover here. Why use one clove when three will do?

I regularly modify recipes that seem too complicated (e.g. take three kinds of chocolate and process them in three different ways before they end up in the same dessert…….NOT!). And if I have some spare ingredients, I might add them. e.g. I recently made a lasagna and added some orphan spinach leaves to the ragu. It was delicious.

Cooking is both a science and an art. Chemistry dictates how ingredients interact and react to heat. Every cook needs some basic skills. Innovation and creativity provide the flair.

There's a favorite quote of mine from the English lifestyle guru, Shirley Conran: "Life's too short to stuff a mushroom". When I was working, that certainly applied. However, in ER, we do have the time to stuff the mushroom if stuffing the mushroom is what we want to do!

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Old 11-27-2013, 12:34 PM   #6
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I'm a guy who never sees a recipe that can't be "enhanced". Other than a few "sacred" recipes from my mother, I don't lose a chance to add a bit extra garlic or pepper to most recipes I come across.

I'm mean, come on! 1 clove of garlic!!! When 3 maybe 4 will do nicely??
That's my DH

I try to explain that it works with soup, stews, grilling, etc. No problem.

But don't try such stunts with baking - that requires more careful precision and ratios of certain key ingredients.

But does he listen?.............

"Gosh, honey, these cookies turned out soft and flat, not crisp chunky like the last time." Me: "OK, what did you do different....."
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Old 11-27-2013, 12:37 PM   #7
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The only recipes I limit garlic in is raw - one clove is enough to "enhance" that baba ganoush or aioli.

If the garlic is going in something cooked - then the more the better!!!!!
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Old 11-27-2013, 12:39 PM   #8
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I love garlic and always add more. For Thanksgiving and Christmas, DH makes roasted potatoes with who cloves of garlic. Over the years, we've added more and more garlic to it. So good. (I don't ever eat potatoes any more, with these 2 meals being the annual exception. In reality the potatoes are more just a delivery device for the garlic).
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Old 11-27-2013, 12:45 PM   #9
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The only recipes I limit garlic in is raw - one clove is enough to "enhance" that baba ganoush or aioli.

If the garlic is going in something cooked - then the more the better!!!!!
I did find my limit once. Tried "40 clove" chicken and have to admit that was quite enough. House smelled like garlic for about 4 days. . . .
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Old 11-27-2013, 12:47 PM   #10
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I did find my limit once. Tried "40 clove" chicken and have to admit that was quite enough. House smelled like garlic for about 4 days. . . .
Years ago I went to a national bridge tournament in Orlando. During one evening, DH and I went to a very fancy restaurant where they offered free roasted cloves of garlic. So we ate them like they were M&Ms. When we went back to the tournament, all evening we heard people wondering why they smelled garlic.....
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Old 11-27-2013, 12:50 PM   #11
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I did find my limit once. Tried "40 clove" chicken and have to admit that was quite enough. House smelled like garlic for about 4 days. . . .
I love that recipe! LOL!

Now you didn't put 40 heads of garlic in there did you?
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Old 11-27-2013, 01:21 PM   #12
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I love that recipe! LOL!

Now you didn't put 40 heads of garlic in there did you?
No but I think they were pretty large cloves. It was OK but the DW was not "pleased" with the aroma that lasted the better part of a week. Maybe I will do it again in summer on the outside grill. I will admit this is one recipe that I was NOT inspired to add extra garlic too. . . . LOL
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Old 11-27-2013, 01:43 PM   #13
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There's a favorite quote of mine from the English lifestyle guru, Shirley Conran: "Life's too short to stuff a mushroom". When I was working, that certainly applied. However, in ER, we do have the time to stuff the mushroom if stuffing the mushroom is what we want to do!

Life is too short to stuff a mushroom. Or is it? | Dr.Carolyn Mathews
Stuffed mushroom is exactly what I have planned to make to bring to my brother's home for Thanksgiving tomorrow! I usually host Thanksgiving, but I let my brother do it this year.
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Old 11-27-2013, 01:47 PM   #14
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Funny, DW and I always use more garlic (typically double) than recipes call for (except maybe for 40 clove Garlic Chicken). I have a buddy who often literally substitutes 'heads' for 'cloves' when garlic is a recipe ingredient. I've seen garlic ice cream, though I wasn't brave enough to buy/try it...

As for recipes substitutions in general. I usually try it as is and often tweak when/if I make the dish again. OTOH, I do have some favorite cooks/chefs whose recipes I trust to consistently be good and rarely have to tweak them - and I have a few sources I don't trust at all. Live and learn, personal tastes anyway...
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Old 11-27-2013, 01:50 PM   #15
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I've seen garlic ice cream, though I wasn't brave enough to buy/try it...
Be brave.
I've had it twice, at the Gilroy Garlic Festival (along with myriad other treats), and thoroughly enjoyed it.
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Old 11-27-2013, 02:45 PM   #16
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I made myself pretty sick at The Stinking Rose in San Francisco on one occasion; but, that may be the only time I've ever experienced too much garlic: About The Stinking Rose - A Garlic Restaurant Located in San Francisco & Beverly Hills

I will also generally add pepper (black, white, red, or a combination depending on the application) beyond what most find appropriate to recipes for myself.

I do not bake. Too much along the lines of undergrad organic chemistry and other black magics for me to get my head around it.
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Old 11-27-2013, 03:01 PM   #17
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Of course you tweak cooking recepies, thats why you write them down, a place to start. Love extra garlic, and peppers. One year I got on a Habenero kick, I can't double down on those.

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Old 11-27-2013, 03:15 PM   #18
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I do not bake. Too much along the lines of undergrad organic chemistry and other black magics for me to get my head around it.
DW is the baker in our house, but it's my understanding baking relies on precise proportions unlike "savory" cooking. So you'd better be really knowledgeable with baking before you go doctoring baking recipes.
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Old 11-27-2013, 03:27 PM   #19
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I don't bake anymore but I agree that baking requires exact measurements and ingredients.

I do recipe improvisations all the time, not that my cooking repertoire is all that extensive anymore. Every once in awhile I Google a recipe but mostly I make a few tried and true recipes for myself, throwing in "this and that" depending on what I have on hand. I don't mind leftovers or eating repetitively for a couple of days. When I retire 2014 I have a fantasy of inviting a few (ex) co-workers for dinner maybe Thursdays right after work a few times a year as I live close to the office (so they can see how the other half lives!). I will have some competition on these occasions from my once-removed, very particular ex-boss who likes to cook and likes to be in charge and has very definite preferences, and is really a very accomplished French chef (French ancestry once removed in her case). I guess I will have to yield some ground to her on these occasions so it is a good thing I like her so much. I have been pushed out of the kitchen a couple of times by her so I know my place!
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Old 11-27-2013, 03:47 PM   #20
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I don't bake anymore but I agree that baking requires exact measurements and ingredients.

I do recipe improvisations all the time, not that my cooking repertoire is all that extensive anymore. Every once in awhile I Google a recipe but mostly I make a few tried and true recipes for myself, throwing in "this and that" depending on what I have on hand. I don't mind leftovers or eating repetitively for a couple of days. When I retire 2014 I have a fantasy of inviting a few (ex) co-workers for dinner maybe Thursdays right after work a few times a year as I live close to the office (so they can see how the other half lives!). I will have some competition on these occasions from my once-removed, very particular ex-boss who likes to cook and likes to be in charge and has very definite preferences, and is really a very accomplished French chef (French ancestry once removed in her case). I guess I will have to yield some ground to her on these occasions so it is a good thing I like her so much. I have been pushed out of the kitchen a couple of times by her so I know my place!
First of all, after you retire I think you will find that your fantasies about entertaining your ex-colleagues will disappear. But if you do invite them to dinner, your ex-boss will no longer have any authority over you, especially in your own home. Just make sure to have everything ready when they arrive so she has no opportunity to hijack your cooking. If she must show off her expertise, invite her to bring either an appetizer or dessert.
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