The Latest

Jan 16, 2014

The Home Cook’s Batterie: Pantry Staples

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I pride myself with being something of a miser in the kitchen, happy with most any ingredients put before me. However, I am rigid when it comes to certain basic ingredients, without which I can’t function terribly well: salt, pepper, olive oil, butter, dried pasta, and Parmesan. Here’s a breakdown of my favorites:

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As the year scampers to an end, we would like to take the time to think about all we are grateful for; thank YOU for your support and interest in Fat Rabbit for the past few months!
Our team will be tending to tasks of the season and in early preparation for our January Workshop, but back in full force and with new updates at the start of the New Year!

Until then, we wish you very Happy Holidays!
Dec 20, 2013

As the year scampers to an end, we would like to take the time to think about all we are grateful for; thank YOU for your support and interest in Fat Rabbit for the past few months!

Our team will be tending to tasks of the season and in early preparation for our January Workshop, but back in full force and with new updates at the start of the New Year!

Until then, we wish you very Happy Holidays!

Dec 5, 2013

Holiday Preparations

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With the invariable stream of visitors, houseguests, and last-minute meals (often including unexpected guests), the holidays pose a real challenge for the home cook. To maintain some inner calm and survive the holidays (relatively) unscathed, I recommend planning ahead and being prepared. Here are a few tips that I find help keep things rolling smoothly:

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Nov 21, 2013 / 1 note

The Home Cook’s Batterie: Spices

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Have you considered your spice cabinet lately? I have, and its grim—a hodgepodge of bottles, bags, and tins of questionable content and indeterminate age. It can take some serious digging to find anything beyond the handful of spices I use with any regularity—black pepper, white pepper, cumin, cinnamon, fennel, cayenne, pepper flakes, coriander. Heading in to Thanksgiving and all the holiday cooking and baking, its time to get that cabinet in order.

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Nov 14, 2013

THE HOME COOK’S BATTERIE: tongs, spatulas and pepper grinders

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Beyond my three key knives and handful of pans, what do I use most in the kitchen? Tongs, spatulas, and a pepper grinder. In fact, they are so important to my cooking that I typically travel with my own bundled up in a kitchen towel along with a chef’s knife; I live in fear of an ill-equipped vacation rental or in-law’s home.

Tongs can do almost anything. I use them for everything from sautéing and stirring to cooking pasta (perfect for separating stuck-together) and pulling pans from the oven. Think of them as a heatproof hand that can go anywhere.

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Nov 7, 2013 / 1 note

The Home Cook’s Batterie: POTS AND PANS

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Next to your knives (last week’s digressive discussion), there are few pieces of kitchen equipment as important as your pots and pans. They can make or break a dish’s ultimate success and make all the difference between effortless dish washing and a Sisyphean nightmare. And they have to look good too, right? We eat with our eyes long before anything ever hits the plate.

It doesn’t take all that many pots or pans to make a complete kitchen. As with most things in my life—beyond knives, boots, and bikes—I err on the side of minimal and only use with any frequency a large 14-inch skillet, a pair of saucepans, a big Dutch oven, a small saucepan/butter warmer, and a couple of incidental roasting pans that I use for a host of odd jobs. I edited my collection before moving and haven’t felt the need to rebuild it.

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Oct 24, 2013 / 3 notes

The Home Cook’s Batterie: KNIVES

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When asked why I have spent so much of my life in kitchens, I usually say its because I get to play with fire and knives. I’m being cheeky of course, but an abiding love for and use of sharp, pointy things does keep cooking fun for me. 

While I have an admittedly large knife collection, a well-prepared kitchen really only needs four: a seven-to-eight-inch chef’s knife (European style or a Japanese-shaped santoku) a four-inch paring knife, a long, flexible slicing knife, and a (preferably) offset-handled serrated knife for slicing crusty loaves. All those other shapes and sizes are pretty redundant.

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Oct 3, 2013

Welcome

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Welcome to the launch of “Modern Cooking for the Week Ahead,” a workshop series for the busy home cook. Despite what the glossy magazines and food networks say, there’s nothing easy about proper cooking. However, it can be made easier with the right knowledge, skillset, and recipes.
The workshops are about practical, day-to-day cooking. We will cook a diverse range of staple dishes like roasts, legumes, sauces, side dishes, and vegetables that can be refashioned through the week into new and compelling meals. Don’t call them leftovers—this is plan-ahead, smart cooking.
In addition to the dish’s themselves, we will work through basic cooking techniques, cooking concepts, and how to use and prepare various ingredients (how do you butcher a whole chicken into pieces for braising; what do you do with zaa’tar?). I will teach how to cook efficiently through multitasking (like a restaurant cook) and economically (by effective use of ingredients, shopping know-how, and maximizing oven heat).
I have more than 20 years of professional cooking experience, half of which has been spent developing recipes for home cooks—and being one too. I know from experience how hard it is to put dinner on the table and lunch in backpacks and I have developed a number of strategies to make it easier and more enjoyable. Portland has some of the best produce and foodstuffs in the country. Let’s put it to good use and have fun while we do it.