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TASTY BITES , Recipes, and Tips from the Kitchen Project  Stephen Block
 Oct 30, 2002 15:50 PST 
*-*-*-*Tasty Bites*-*-*-FROM THE KITCHEN PROJECT*-*-*-*-*-
OCT 30, 2002
Vol. 4 # 8
Stephen Block, editor, The Kitchen Project

This Ezine covers a lot of sides of Cooking. Not just recipes but
history, background, and tips of some of your Favorite foods.

         The History Of Fried Chicken.
         Recipe for Southern Fried Chicken.

         Dead Ringer Cookies, some Ghoulish history with this cookie.

         Nice Tidbits and Pearls of Household Wisdom .

         Chicken Bourguignon ( bor-ging- yone )

         Readers comments, on making sauerkraut
         Readers comments, Soft Baked Pretzels

To subscribe send a blank email to

TO unsubscribe send an email to
step-@kitchenproject.com and simply type UN ..anywhere
Our German Cookbook is a nice gift , with recipes and anecdotes of a
German American Grandmother.

To sample our German Cookbook go here
-*-*-*Tasty Bites *-*-*- FOOD HISTORY *-*-*-*
The Food History Project

By Chef Stephen Holloway

Question ; from Amit,
What is the history of Fried
Chicken? Is it American or
European in origin?

Your question is not easy to answer in detail!
It is not American or European in origin, or is it?

As Food Historians we study the history of food, things like chicken
bones tell us that it was eaten at a certain time frame in history. But
was it fried or roasted? Bones do not tell us how it was cooked.
This we do know, frying was used during this time, so it is possible it
was fried.
1500,000 years B.C.: Humans create a hearth, a permanent cooking
place.While early cooking means dropping food directly onto hot
embers,eventually, people invent grills of stones to cook on; spit-
roasting by putting small pieces of food on sticks and holding them over
the fire; and stewing by wrapping food in leaves and cooking them in hot
8,000 B.C.: Middle Easterners domesticate and breed animals for food,
the first of which are deer, antelope and sheep.
2500 B.C.: Chicken bones are found in Egypt that give us a clue that
Chicken was a staple of this time frame.

In America it is thought that the Scottish people were the first to
introduce fried Chicken.
They preferred to fry their chicken as opposed to the English and
Germans that favored baking or boiling it.   

One of the first recorded recipes for it was in Mary Randolph’s book, in
the third printing of Virginia House-Wife (1828), told how to make fried
chicken. Very simply, the chickens are cut up, dredged in flour,
sprinkled with a little salt, put in a skillet with hot fat, and fried
until golden brown. There are experts that still feel this is the best
recipe for fried chicken. That all the different embellishments like
seasoned breadcrumbs and double dipping are no improvement.

We use to do this recipe in the restaurant that I first started in. The
chicken was excellent. I thought then that we did it that way just
because it was easy. Sometimes simple is better.

I do feel that soaking the chicken (brining) it salt water or buttermilk
is a definite improvement.
Food history courtesy of Stephen Holloway’s
Dictionary of Culinary terms

If you are interested in this great resource for cooking,
The Dictionary of Culinary Terms includes English, French, Italian,
German, Spanish, Japanese, and Chinese terms used in modern cooking.
Also Stephen shares the history of many of these terms and recipes that
go along with them.
It is in CD format that downloads nicely to your computer for easy

Here is a link for more information,

If you have a question on the history of food feel free to email me or
Stephen Holloway
Stephen Block…
Stephen Holloway,   
-*-*-*Tasty Bites *-*-*- SOUTHERN FRIED CHICKEN RECIPE *-*-*-*

Here is a recipe called The Perfect Southern Fried Chicken
From my Mothers Southern Chicken, by James Villas,
two 3-pound chicken fryers
2 cups all-purpose flour
salt and black pepper to taste
1 cup milk
Crisco vegetable shortening
1 tablespoon bacon grease
Cut the chicken carefully and evenly into serving pieces, taking great
care to keep the skin of each piece intact, and rinse under running
In a heavy brown paper bag, combine the flour and salt and pepper and
shake till well blended. Pour the milk into a soup bowl.
Set an electric fry pan at 375°F. or place a large cast-iron skillet
over moderate heat, fill half full of melted Crisco, and add the bacon
grease. When a drop of water flipped into the fat sputters, dip some of
the chicken pieces into the milk then place in the bag. Shake vigorously
to coat evenly, shake the excess flour back into the bag, and arrange
the pieces in the fat, making sure not to overcrowd the pan. Fry the
chicken till golden brown and crisp, 15 to 20 minutes, turn with tongs,
reduce heat to 350°F. and fry till golden brown, about 15 minutes
longer. (Turn the chicken only once.) Drain on another paper bag and
repeat the procedure with the remaining chicken, adding a little more
shortening and bacon grease if necessary and maintaining the heat at
Transfer the chicken to a large platter and do not cover. Serve warm or
at room temperature.
Serves 8
For more Fried Chicken Recipes,
Courtesy of this web site about Southern Cooking

-*-*-*Tasty Bites *-*-*- FOR CHRISTMAS BAKING and GIFTS*-*-*-*
Order fresh Madagascar vanilla beans here;

Get a good start on your Christmas Baking or homemade Vanilla Extract or
Kaluha makes a wonderful gift for Christmas. Now is a good time to get
it started, Free recipes for making vanilla extract and others using
your vanilla beans with your purchase.

-*-*-*Tasty Bites *-*-*- DEAD RINGER COOKIES *-*-*-*
If you are going to a Halloween party and need a last minute treat, how
about making something with a real bit of ghoulish history behind them.
Something that will give a chill when you tell them the history
associated with these cookies.

England Buried People Alive .......

England is old and small and they started running out of places to bury
people. So, they would dig up coffins and would take their bones to a
house and reuse the grave. When reopening these coffins, one out of 25
coffins were found to have scratch marks on the inside and they realized
they had been burying people alive. So they thought they would tie
astring on their wrist and lead it through the coffin and up through
the round and tie it to a bell. Someone would have to sit out in the
graveyard all night (the "graveyard shift") to listen for the bell,
thus,someone could be "saved by the bell," or was considered a "dead
The Recipe
1 cups butter, softened
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Flavorings and color, such as Licorice extract and black food coloring.

1 Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and flavorings and mix well. Stir
flour, baking powder and salt together. Add to batter and mix well.
2 CHILL 3-4 hours or overnight before using.
3 Roll cookies out approximately 1/4 inch thick and insert toothpick
into the top of the cookie this is so you can tie a string to it.
4 Bake cookies at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 8-10 minutes. This
dough keeps well in a covered container in the refrigerator for a couple
of weeks.
5 Tie a String through each cookie and make a loop at the other end to
put on your finger. Then people can walk around with the cookie and say
they just came from the grave, they were buried alive rang the bell and
someone opened up the coffin and let you out.
You can also say that you are going to a grave site as they are going to
bury someone and you have to tie a bell to the supposed corpse in case
he comes alive after being buried.

-*-*-*Tasty Bites *-*-*-SUSAN’S TIPS *-*-*-*
By Susan Doyle
Here are some nice pearls of wisdom from Susan’s treasure chest of many
years of being Queen of her domain.


Keep your sponges bacteria free and sweet smelling by putting sponges
you have soaked for a few seconds with lemon juice in your microwave
for 1 minute. It is a good idea to do sponges once a week.


To keep cat litter and your kitties fresh smelling, simply mix baby
powder in with the litter.


Thought that you might want to know how Ruth B, a devoted subscriber,
stores sheets in her linen closet. She folds the sheets as usual but
instead of piling the sheets in one pile and the pillowcases in
another pile, she slips the folded sheets and other pillowcases into
a matching pillowcase. This makes it easy to "grab & run" and also
keeps everything together. She finds it much easier than searching
through a pile of sheets or cases to find the set.


Surprise your family with a meatloaf baked in a ring mold. Fill the
center with mashed potatoes, fresh cooked vegetables. Serve gravy or
sauce on the side.


Leslye, my daughter in Texas, is the MOST meticulous housekeeper in
the world. She sends this tip:

Line your vegetable bins in the refrigerator with paper towels to
absorb moisture. When they begin to get damp, use them to wipe out
the bins and then
replace with fresh paper towels.

-*-*-*Tasty Bites *-*-*-SOUL FOOD COOK BOOK *-*-*-*
Remember The Great Smells Of Soul Food Cooking At Your
Grandma's House? Now you can learn to fix some of
these same great dishes. Check out this soul food
cookbook with over 250 incredible recipes. Visit:

-*-*-*Tasty Bites *-*-*-CHEF ON A DIET *-*-*-*
Chef Warren Lower
Point Vincent, Australia
Chefs introduction follows the recipe.
So now you’re all saying “well get to the point & stop rambling on "
Here is a favorite recipe of mine.

( bor-ging- yone ) see it is not that difficult

Here is a recipe that is easy to prepare and can even be prepared ahead
of time and frozen.

4 pounds (2kg) Chicken thighs and breasts (skin removed)
Flour, for dredging the chicken
2 cups Fat-free Low Sodium Chicken Broth
2 chicken stock cubes dissolved in 2 cups of hot water
2 cups dry white wine or as above if you don’t like cooking with wine
1 pound (500grm) whole Baby Carrots or (Carrots cut in large chunks)
1/4 Cup tomato paste
4 cloves garlic -- minced
1/2 Teaspoon dried thyme leaves (if you have fresh use 1 tsp)
2   Bay Leaves
1/4 Tsp Salt
1/4 Tsp Black Pepper
8 oz (226 gram) raw baby(pickling)Onions (frozen ones work also)
8 oz (226 gram) Mushrooms
2 cups hot cooked white rice
2 cups hot cooked wild rice
1/4 Cup minced fresh parsley

Preheat oven to 325 F (160 C).
Dredge chicken very lightly with flour. Shaking off any excess flour.
Generously spray non stick Dutch oven or large cast iron pan with a lid
with cooking spray;
Heat until medium hot.
Brown the chicken on all sides for about 10 minutes in total,
Cooking in batches if necessary
Drain off any excess fat.
Fat is one thing we don’t want in our meal isn’t it.
But we still want the flavor
Add chicken stock or water and chicken cubes, wine, carrots, tomato
paste, garlic, thyme, bay leaves, salt and pepper to Dutch oven or cast
iron pan; Bring to the boil. Cover; transfer to oven. Bake 1 hour.
Add onions and mushrooms. Uncover; bake about 35 minutes or until
vegetables are tender, and chicken is no longer pink in center and
juices run clear.
Remove bay leaves.
Combine (hot) white and wild rice and ½ the parsley;
Serve with chicken. Sprinkle with the remaining parsley.

And this recipe you will use many times as I do at work and at home

Nutrients per Serving:
          Calories     146 10% of calories from
          Total Fat      2g    Saturated Fat <1 g
          Protein       22g    Carbohydrate l0g
          Cholesterol   60mg   Sodium      306mg
          Dietary Fibre 2g

         If you are doing weight watchers points program, I have
calculated it to be          3 WW points

Now I know what you’re going to say” what’s a chef doing on a diet".
Well let me tell you, the old adage of “never trust a skinny chef ". Has
been used for many years. Not that I'm saying skinny chefs can't cook,
some of the best chefs I have ever worked with or seen operate a kitchen
are skinny, or should I not say skinny but not plump. Now no matter how
I rephrase this I’m going to get into trouble so I'll quit while I'm
Let me just say I’m not skinny, in fact I’m very overweight, And it was
not only starting to affect my health, self esteem, and confidence, to
name just a few. Even the way people spoke to what they said. Some
people where quite cruel without even realizing it what they where

But now let's get to the point
6 weeks ago I decided to start doing something about putting my weight
and for that matter my health back on track. I knew it wouldn’t be easy
for anyone let alone someone who is around food & preparing & having to
taste food all their working days and nights. But I also wasn’t prepared
to starve myself either, so if I fall off one day I’ll start again
tomorrow. I wasn’t prepared to put pressure on myself that would make
life not only hell for me and my staff but also my family
-*-*-*Tasty Bites *-*-*-RECIPES FROM A GERMAN GRANDMA *-*-*-*
Stephen Block


I got a some nice comments from my sauerkraut article from last month,
I have found out not only do people enjoy it but some have a passion for
really good sauerkraut.

One comment is, what is kosher salt? Kosher salt, is a larger grained
salt (but not as big as rock salt ) that is found in most grocery
stores. You can use any salt but I don’t advise using iodized salt as it
can sometimes turn the cabbage black.

Here was a nice alternative way to make sauerkraut that her grandmother
use to make at the turn of the century (1900’s)

From Eugenia,

Here is an alternative way to make sauerkraut

She was born in Krosno, Poland, 1901.
They would layer ENTIRE HEADS OF CABBAGE in barrels, along with APPLES
Stone weights on top of a wooden cover kept the cabbage submerged.
The usual procedure of skimming, etc. took place.
When ready, they just removed an entire head and then shredded it.

They used apples we refer to as McIntosh, Jonathan for their sweetness,
and Granny Smiths for tartness.


I receive questions regarding making soft pretzels.
Like can the recipe be doubled …tripled and do they freeze well

The recipe is very flexible that way. It is not like cookie dough that
tends to be a real delicate balance.
At the restaurant I use simple multiplication for what ever amount I
I know sometimes you hear that the salt or some ingredient doesn't have
the same multiplication ratio as you scale it up. In this case it does
work. However many times flours are different and I just always add more
flour if it seems to loose to make a nice "tight" dough.

The other thing is that if the pretzels are made ahead, they can be
frozen as long as it is right as soon as they are cooled down ...and
they can be reheated in the oven ...and you will not notice a lot of
difference than fresh. I individually wrap each pretzel in plastic wrap
and then bag and freeze.

*-*-*-*Tasty Bites*-*-*- OUR STAFF *-*-*-*-*-
The Kitchen Project is an interactive Web site that explores FOOD
…Cooking is not only a necessary skill, it is FUN!!!

Feel free to ask our Chefs Questions;

Stephen Block…(Oregon) General information, German , Cajun, BBQ, Food
Stephen Holloway, (Ohio) General Information, Food History
Susan Doyle…specializes in Household wisdom,
Isaac Frerichs general information , chocolate,
Nouel “Wing” Omamalin (Phillipines) Pastries, Cookies, Wedding Cakes,
Phillipino Cuisine…….. nomam-@sni.ph
Mickey Schick Shtamer , (Israel) Greek and Middle Eastern Cooking,
Graphic design
Warren Lower , (Australian) General Information, Australian cooking,
Asian cuisine ,

*-*-*-*Tasty Bites *-*-*-TO SUBSCRIBE TO THIS PUBLICATION:*-*-*-

Send a blank email to step-@kitchenproject.com with SUBSCRIBE written
on it Please forward this to any friends who enjoy cooking, and send me
your comments, (good or bad) contributions, and recipes.
Thank you, and until next time....COOK SOMETHING GOOD, and share it with

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