Cooking Goals

I would like to make money doing what I love.

It’s probably everyone’s dream.

I like to cook.  I love it, but working as a cook in the past has been very unsatisfying.  Mostly the thanklessness of the job.  Plus the work environment is hot, messy, and loud with the most jaded shady people holding sharp objects and moving fast in a confined area. Not a dream environment.  Don’t get me wrong some people love this aspect of the job.  With ass grabbing and constant “who has the bigger wang” situations.  I don’t like the job because there is no appreciation for the craft as much as a personal setting.  Sitting down with friends and family, serving them a hand crafted meal, while laughing and drinking is a much better environment for me.

How does this become an income generating operation?

 

 

What the Heck is Floating in My Wine?

skjdnksdm.PNGFinally! You made it to that long anticipated glass of wine. You’ve carefully selected the perfect wine to go with your night, when you look down to find small crystals in your glass, bottle, or on the end of your cork.   Instead of returning your bottle, read this to get the skinny on sediments.

Sediment shows the wine’s personality.  Usually these sediments are attributed to tartrates, or tartaric acid.  Tartaric acid occurs naturally in grapes and binds with the dead yeast cells, or lees, during the fermentation process. Along with tartaric acid and lees, sediment contains left over grape solids and is usually a sign of quality as opposed to a flaw.lees  This sediment is %100 safe to drink, but there are ways that the wine maker can remove tartrates.

The removal of wine sediment can be done during and after the fermentation process, but this usually impacts a wine’s flavors and hurts its ability to be aged if over processed.  One of the early methods to remove sediment is to let the wine sit in the barrel allowing all the sediment sink to the bottom.   Then the wine maker simply siphons the wine off the top and leave the lees on the bottom.  Another is by cold stabilization, which brings the wine down to an above freezing level and the tartrates freeze and accumulate on the container. Again then its simply a matter of racking out the wine and leaving the unwanted sediment.  These methods are all done in the winery, but there are some things you can do to remove the tartrates before the wine hits your glass.

Finding sediment may not seem appetizing even if you know they’re safe, so there are ways to filter them out.  One method is to let the wine sit for an hour (preferably in a cold place to crystallize the tartrates), letting all the tartrates sink to the bottom. Then simply pour the wine into a decanter and leave all the sediment in the bottle.  Another way is to pour the wine through a filter that has a colander like filter. Either way you choose remember the tartrates are completely safe and show character in the wine.

These methods are all different levels of processing which can remove the wines beautiful subtleties. A good rule is, the higher quality your bottle of wine is, the more likely you are to see tartrates.

Red Wine Territory

The history of wine making in France goes back over 2000 years when Romans first brought their ideas to grow vitis vinifera specifically for wine.  France is synonymous with fine wine, and is a great place to start writing about wine.  The red wine made there is among the best in the world.

Red wine is made when the skins of the grapes not filtered out during fermentation.  This gives the wine its tannins and its violet color.  Tannins have an astringent taste, and create a drying in the mouth.  The terminology of wine can get confusing here, because most people use “dry” to describe this drying sensation they get from tannins, when actually a dry wine is simply a wine that has no residual sugar, meaning it isn’t sweet.  But because a wine is dry doesn’t mean it still can’t taste like fruit, the wine just won’t taste sweet like fruit juice.

As red oxidized-wine-examplewine ages the tannins relax, and the color turns from violet, to brick, then to brown just like the color spectrum is shown here compliments of Wine Folly.  Many factors determine if a wine can be aged well, like varietal, vintage, wine makers style, how the bottle is stored, or if the cork is bad.  Some harshly tannic wines like Barolo and Bordeaux will require bottle ageing to mellow out the tannins.

The two most popular red wine varietals around the world is Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir.  Cabernet, or “Cab” as most people call it,  has a thick skin so it generally has medium to high tannic structure, and medium to high acid profile, and allows Cabernet to be a very age worthy wine.  Classic Regions for Cabernet Sauvignon are left bank Bordeaux, France, and Napa Valley, California.  In contrast Pinot Noir, has thin skin, so it has a lighter color and less tannic than other varietals.  Pinots tend to convey earthy notes and a lot of floral notes. Classic regions for Pinot Noir are Burgundy, France, Willamette Valley, Oregon, Central Coast, California.

Red wine is a huge world and can be studied for years before knowing everything, but I hope this gives people a general outline to build from.  Please comment, like and follow for more posts.

 

Daily Post

Story Wine

wine picutre

Oenology is the study of wine, and can spill into lots of different fields; it can encompass geography, geology, meteorology, and history.  Learning about wine can seem like an impossible task, and leave most wondering where to begin.  Lucky for me I work at a wine shop. So everyday I’m exposed to new wines, new regions, and general wine information.  When I first started learning about wine, I was immediately attracted to the wines with the most flavor and character, so I drank burly red wines from California.  Also, I didn’t quite understand the difference between California and French wines.  I drank my way through Napa and Sonoma, then through Brordeaux and Rhone.  I realized most Californian wines are like lifted trucks, and French wines are like a guy in a tuxedo.  Californian wines are usually loud and in your face, but make it easy to pick out distinct flavors so you can recognize them down the line.  The French wines are a little more subtle.

My favorite aspect of French wine is the fact that they have been at it for so long.  They have found pips in Marsellille that are 2600 years old, and they could have been growing wine for even longer then that.  They know what they are doing over there.

Thank you for reading! please like or feel free to comment in the section below.

 

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Pizza Pattern

pizzaGreasy, cheesy, crispy, tasty all the -y adjectives you could possible think of to describe a bite into the 45° angle tip of a hot slice of pizza. The look of pizza is a beautiful thing, with the toppings geometrically placed so that every bite delivers the perfect amount of cheese, topping and sauce. The best food to satisfy the late night drunk, the broke college student, Jr.’s  birthday party, or perfect pairing with a beer, or either a quick slice for lunch, or a whole pizza to yourself, any way you slice it, pizza is the best meal choice for everyone.

Daily Post

BBQ Bliss

Sometimes its tough to look yourself in the mirror and objectively analyze the person staring back at you.  So me and my girlfriend have been articulation our thoughts in blog form. To help focus our writing, we have been holding weekly mastermind groups with each other.  Last week we sat down and made kind of a vision board, to help each other find exactly we want to write about. I found the idea through one of my favorite podcasts, Smart Passive Income (SPI) with Pat Flynn.  If your a aspiring entrepreneur and you haven’t heard of this podcast, go and listen to it.

The vision board was a picture representation of what our business would look and. I put a heart in the middle to represent my business.  Next I started adding pictures or writings that represented me.  For mine I had my favorite colors, red and black, and favorite pass times, barbecuing. I had lots of other things on there, but I wanted to find the things that would make me money and be my passion, and maybe combinations of a couple.mind-map

This really helped me visualize what I really cared about.  In SPI Pat talks a lot about finding your niche, and aligning that niche with your passion. My “passion,” was very eluding to me.  I mean for Priscilla (my girlfriend) it was obvious what her passion was and what direction she should go.  She can pair being a mom with any of the other ideas she had on her board, so she was easy.

I knew my passion was cooking… I knew that was my direction, but just cooking was way to broad.  For a idea to be defined as a niche it needs to be specific, and cooking is  very broad.  So barbecue was the next closest passion to cooking.

Please tell me what you think in the comment section.  If you know any good sites for Barbecue then let me know.  Also thank you for visiting, and please like right below.

 

The Passionate Chef; Third Corner Ocean Beach, CA

Chef Juan Flores is known for his passionate style. He shows this emotion in his carefully crafted French dishes at 3rd Corner Bistro and Wine Shop in Ocean Beach, CA.  He has been cooking classic French recipes at Third Corner ever since he apprenticed with Marcel Perrin, a French chef.

During WWII, despite not being of Jewish decent, Marcel was captured by the Nazi’s. Marcel used his knowledge of baking from his family’s bakery, and started cooking at the concentration camp. After some time, he was asked by one of the Nazi generals to cook for a party.  When he returned he saw all the other bakers had been shot dead.  He continued baking in the camp until the end of the war when he was finally rescued by the U.S. Marines and taken to the San Fransisco where he continued his cooking. Later he moved to San Diego, where he lives today.  At the time of writing this Marcel is still alive and is 97 years old. Chef Juan goes to his house every other day to cook and care for him. Juan studied under Marcel for 13 years and he taught him everything Juan knows, including the best secrets to cooking with different forms of alcohol.

At Third Corner Chef Juan exercises his culinary muscle with full flavored recipes.  Juan uses alcohol to his advantage in his sauces, marinades, and stocks. He also enjoys the occasional glass for himself.  My favorite is his lemon berre blanc that he uses on his Day Boat Scallops. This a simple recipe that is essentially white wine and butter, a staple in many of his dishes.

Alcohol can grease the timid into a interesting conversation, but in cooking it can liven up a dish. And chef Juan knows this.  So if your ever in the neighborhood, check out Third Corner. Taste the flavors that stem from a history of passionate cooking.

Cast Iron Cookware; 3 Reasons to Switch

Every cook worth their salt should own at least one cast iron skillet.  This powerful weapon could win many culinary battles, and is a key tool in a chefs arsenal. For all its magnificence, its true that  many people have no idea why this cookware of the gods should be revered. These durable pots and pans can last a life time, give a cook a great natural cooking option, and the best part, they only get better with use.   Now adjust your bifocals and follow the 3 reasons to to switch to cast iron cookware.

  1. Cast iron one tough puppy.  Hands down the strongest cookware on the market.  Just picking up a skillet will show you the strength of these guys.  Even the rustiest, dirtiest, old pan can be washed and made a new in no time says Jessica Faulds in her post on Cottage Life. All you will need in a little elbow grease to bring an old unused pan back from the dead. There is a great video that tasty did on how to clean, and season an old one below.  I like to buy my cast iron at swap meets and yard sales.  You can get the best deals on these some decrepit looking pans.  They may look like they have no hope but these are the cooks best friend, just waiting to be brought home and loved.

2. Cast iron pans have the ability to harbor one of the most non stick surfaces in cooking, with out the Teflon. According to Dr. Frank Lipman, Teflon, convenient as they are, non-stick can release toxic fumes when the heat gets too high, letting chemical particles fly through your kitchen and into anyone in the vicinity. So, for your own safety and just for an excuse to own one of the best cooking vessels, switch to cast iron.  Anyone trying to live a natural lifestyle might benefit from cast iron. Added bonus they add iron to your diet as well.

3. Probably the best reason to acquire a cast iron arsenal would be because they get better the more you use it.  Every time you cook something with your cast iron the oils create a thicker polymer coat on the face of the pan.  The best use would be searing meats.  Meats have fat that will ooze out when the meat is cooked and this fat will stick to the porous surface of the pan.  As long as you clean and oil you pan after use this cooking buddy should last you a life time.

Conclusion: Every chef, home cook, college student, bachelor, home maker and blogger should own at least one cast iron skillet.  The battle for great food secrets can only be won with a great tool such as cast iron.  Now that we learned ourselves on how to use em lets go out and get em. These durable pots and pans can last a life time.  They give us a natural cookware option and only get better with age.  If you like this post please share with everyone you possibly can, and don’t forget to check out some of my other posts, like how to butcher a chicken.

 

For some great recipes using cast iron click here!

Goals and Strategy

Goals, accomplishments, trophies, objectives, and dreams, these things are sought after desires that people work towards.  There are many different strategies that people use to achieve their particular targets, and everyone has a different evaluation of what their goals may be.  However, some methods work more effectively then others.  For our purpose on Best Cooks Secrets, our goals would have to be updated weekly.  The best goals are restricted by time, are unambiguous, and measurable.  So every week we will write increasingly challenging obtainable goals.

Goals need to hold more of a challenge then the previous goals, but still be obtainable.

Last weeks goals were to achieve 50 views for one post.  The highest reached was 27 on Feb. 2nd.

This week will be to focus on content.  Make sure every detail is taken into account.

My goals need to be updated every week. Therefore, I need to write twice every week.  On Mondays I will write about cooking secrets, and on Fridays will be my updated goals.

Mondays and Fridays are days that I will have the house to myself (besides my son). This fact will be taken advantage of to utilize a healthy writing atmosphere.

This week all focus will be on content. On every subject I write about, there will be research done as to who has the best, and most shared content at the moment and out perform them. To accomplish this goal I will use the site buzz sumo to search the related topic, read the top 5 and see what they all have in common and use that to my advantage.

With the many interpretations of desired goals, its easy to lose sight of your targets if there is no strategy set up to help accomplish those goals. Our strategy will be to update these update these goals weekly with a gradual incline in difficulty, also to write a post every week (even if the posts are short).