Aussies travel in packs in the United States, so if you meet one, you meet twenty. And when Aussies get together, the conversation inevitably turns to chicken salt, how it’s not available in the States, and how it should be. Everyone wants to export it or recreate it but it turns out that complaining about not having it is easier than doing either. When we were opening Dudley’s Deli we finally decided to make it.
We love a great big labor-intensive all-day cooking project as much as the next crew of food writers, but that doesn’t mean we’re above cutting corners—especially when those corners save time and effort without compromising deliciousness. And yes, sometimes we even buy pre-made tomato sauce. From last-minute meals to do-this-all-the-time hacks, here are our go-to cooking cheats. May they serve you well.
I have to make some hummingbird food, and it takes a while for 6 cups of water to come to a boil…
Someone should run a test comparing the time and energy consumed for various techniques.
Do as above, microwaving half until 200 degree F, and placing half on the stove top for heating, then combining and cook.
Microwave all the water to say 200 degrees F and then place the water and pasta on the stove top to complete the cooking.
Heat the water in two pans on the stove top and then combine and cook to completion.
Which leads to another question; what is the comparison on electricity use? Am I spending more money to microwave half my water than if I had heated it all on the stove? Consider that electricity use will be different depending on the cooktop. Microwaving the entire thing is the most energy efficient solution, short of an electric kettle. If you have an induction stove, it will be close. (note that this doesn’t account for the fossil fuel -> electricity conversion or the variance in fuel costs).
The most flavorful, full-bodied chicken stock takes hours to make on the stove—usually. Here’s a shortcut that doesn’t compromise on quality: add packets of unflavored gelatin to your stock ingredients and have stock in less than an hour.
If you want good flavour – roast the bones, some carrot and some onion @ 450F for a half hour or so, transfer to pot and add the water. Makes it ten times better. The gelatin is just for the body. The flavour comes from the bones/meat, and pulverizing them extracts the flavor more quickly.