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Achiote Paste To make achiote paste from annatto seeds, soak them in water for at least 1 1/2 to 2 hours; drain them, and grind them in a spice grinder or blender. Tightly wrapped, it will keep for months at room temperature. As the cooking liquid can permanently stain clothing and walls, the paste ...

 


Achiote Seeds Before using, soak overnight in water, then grind into a paste. ...

 


Almonds How to Blanch Almonds Place shelled almonds in a saucepan. Cover with cold water. Turn burner to high. Once water boils, remove from heat. Drain and cover almonds with cold water to cool. Press each almond between thumb and forefinger to slip off skin. Dry almonds on paper towels. Hints: ...

 


Angel Food Cake Make sure you allow enough time for your egg whites to reach room temperature. Use cake flour, not all-purpose flour. Sift flour repeatedly (many old recipes say to sift four times). Fold batter gently, but make sure flour is completely incorporated. Make sure all utensils and ...

 


Anise Water To make anise water, put 1 tablespoon aniseed in 1/2 cup water and simmer for 3 to 4 minutes. Let steep for 10 minutes, then strain off seeds. ...

 


Artichokes To Clean and Prepare for Cooking Cut off about 1 inch from the top of the artichoke with a sharp knife. Use a kitchen shears to cut straight across the top of each of the leaves to remove the sharp tips. Remove small, hanging bottom leaves so that it is even all around. With a cut lemon, ...

 


Avocados Avocados ripen best off the tree, so if you can wait to use them, buy the rock hard ones. The best are the purplish black, bumpy-skinned Haas avocados. They have a rich, buttery flesh. The smoother, green-skinned California and Florida avocados are too watery, too sweet, and tasteless. It ...

 


Banana Leaves Preparing for Wrapping To prepare banana leaves for wrapping, cut them into pieces large enough to wrap the piece of meat or poultry you will be cooking. Simmer them in hot water to cover for 15 minutes to make them pliable. They are frustrating to work with since they tear so easily. ...

 


Bananas Over-Ripe Bananas In recipes calling for banana pulp, such as those for banana bread, muffins, or pancake, the easiest way to use the banana is this: Pull it out of the freezer. That's right. Take it from the freezer to the blender. When you see that bananas are heading toward rotting, even ...

 

  Beans

Beans Cooking Dried Beans Before cooking dried beans, rinse them well and pick them over for stones or inferior beans. If more water is needed when cooking beans, always add very hot or boiling water as cold water will discolor the beans. More flavor can be obtained by adding a couple of ...

 




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