Saturday, 12 September 2015

World flavours: Japan

An overview of the most commonly used ingredients per category. These products can serve as inspiration for your components and compositions.

Vegetables

Potatoes, woundwort, asparagus, eggplant, azuki beans, bamboo shoots, scallions, daikon (radish), ginger, gobo (Japanese salsify), kabocha squash, burdock, cucumber, cabbage, lotus root, snow peas, leek, turnip, radishes, salsify, soy beans (edamame), spinach, sugar snap peas, carrots, yams, sweet potatoes.

Mushrooms

Beech mushroom, enokitake yellow oyster mushrooms, hohshimeji, nameko, oyster mushroom, wig mushroom, shiitake, tropical purse fungi.

Fruit

Apples, lemon, fude (oval yellow khaki), Harry Stone pick plums, honey melon, hosui (Asian pear), Japanese wine berries, cherry, kumquat, pear (nashi), plums, santa rosa plums, satsumas, quince, sudachi, yuzu, watermelon, white mulberry.

Meat, game and poultry

Meat: Kobe, Wagyū, pork. Poultry: duck, chicken.

Fish & shellfish

Fish: alfoncino, bonito, fugu-fish (puffer), gar, brill, herring, halibut, mackerel, eel, red snapper, rock char, sardines, plaice, turbot, lemon sole, tuna, salmon (keta), sea bass, silk snapper, swordfish. Shellfish: mantis shrimp, shrimp, king crab, crab, lobster, prawns, surimi (crab sticks), tiger shrimp, abalone, akagai, scallop, hamaguri, clams, mussels, oyster, quahog, strandgraper, carpet shell clams. Others: blue shark, herring roe, caviar, octopus, squid, salmon roe, sea urchin.

Fats & Oils

Fats: butter. Oils: coconut oil, vegetable oil.

Nuts, seeds and grains

Nuts: ginkgo nuts, chestnut, peanuts, walnuts. Seeds: white and black sesame. Grains: buckwheat, rice: akitakomachi, koshikari, nishiki, sushi rice, shinode, shiragiku, sweet glutinous rice (mochigme), wheat.

Drinks

Green tea, mugischa (roasted barley tea), matcha. Alcoholic beverages: sake, shochu, shiro sake: sake with sweet rice malt, mirin.

World flavours: Spain

An overview of the most commonly used ingredients per category. These products can serve as inspiration for your components and compositions.

Vegetables

Potatoes (Baroness), artichoke (Tudela), asparagus, eggplant, avocado, celery, cauliflower, chanterelles, mushrooms, zucchini, cep, peas, green asparagus, capers, chickpeas, garlic, crested hyacinth flowers, spring onion, negra peppers, oyster mushrooms, olives, peppers, pumpkin, leek, lettuce, red onion, chili, green beans, spinach, tomatoes, truffles, broad beans, onions, fennel, chicory, white cabbage, carrots, sweet potato, sweet peppers, sweet onion.

Fruit

Strawberry, apricot (bulida), apples, prickly pear, lemon (Verna, primo fiori), dates, dr. Jules guyot pear, raspberry, pomegranate, grapefruit, persimmons, cherries, kumquat, quince, lime, limonera, tangerine, melon, pear, peach, grapefruit, plums (Japonesas), orange (Navelina, salustiana, sanguinelli, nova), star fruit, susine, tendral honeydew melon, fig, mango.

Meat, game and poultry

Meat: goat, lamb, beef, bull meat, pork. Game: rabbit, wild boar. Poultry: pigeon, duck, pheasant, goose, turkey, chicken, quail, partridge. Other: frogs, snails.

Cuts of meat

Ibérico Jamón, Jamón Redondo, Jamón Serrano, Morcillas Arroz, Morcilla Jabugo,
Botifarra, Morcilla Asturiana, Morcilla the Requema, jabugo, pamplona, ​​lomo embuchado
additional de cerdo ibérico, Morcon the cerdo, espetec, palacios, fuet additional sin pimienta, chorizo the soria, the cantimpalo chorizo, chorizo ​​ibérico blank, mini chorizo, chorizo ​​ibérico de rojo jabugo, longaniza the aragon, chorizo ​​rojo albaceteno, sobrassada the Mallorca, the longaniza pascus.

Fish and shellfish

Fish: anchovies, trout, hake, mojama the atún, mullet, eels, skate, sardines, turbot, tuna, salmon, monkfish. Shellfish: prawns, shrimp, clams, lobster, langoustine, North Sea crab, sea red crab, limpet, clams, brown clams, cockles, mediterranean marine mussels, oysters, crassostrea anglulata, scallop. Other: barnacle, squid, fish eggs.

Dairy & Cheese

Milk: goat's milk, cow's milk, cottage cheese, sheep's milk yogurt. Cheese: aragon, airiños, cabrales, camerano, formatge de la Selva, goat cheese, cottage cheese, idiazabal, breña la, la serena, loose ibores manchego, los vazquez, mahon, roncal, tietar, valdeon.

Fats & Oils

Fats: butter, lard. Oils: arbequina, cornicabra, hojiblanca, manzanilla aloreña, ocal, picudo.

Nuts, seeds and grains

Nuts: almonds, hazelnuts, chestnuts, pine nuts, peanuts, walnuts. Grains: custard, corn, rice (bomba, bahia, Thai bonnet), rye, wheat.

Drinks

Cava, rioja (wine), sherry, cider, sangria, parsha, brandy.

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Lemon grass (sereh)

Other world cuisines use a variety of unusual products that you can use to experiment and create your own variations in the kitchen. One such product is lemon grass. Lemon grass, also known as sereh, is a typical flavour enhancer and is indispensable in cuisines from countries such as Indonesia, Vietnam, India, and Thailand.

Lemon grass is usually used whole, often crushed before use or tied in a knot. It is used in stews and soups and, in Thailand, chopped into pieces to be used in curries and salads. It is also incorporated into chilli pastes.

The taste and smell of lemon grass is reminiscent of lemon and is slightly sour; most of the flavour comes from the sap in the stalk. Before using the lemon grass, the top, bottom, and outer leaves need to be removed. Although lemon grass is often used raw in salads in other countries, the hard variety available in the Netherlands is not suitable for this purpose. You can, however, finely chop the white part and use that in dressings, for instance. You can also buy a powdered version from Asian food stores. But be careful with how much you use as the flavour can quickly become overpowering!


At Gastronomixs you'll also find various components and compositions in which lemon grass is used as an important flavour enhancer. How about banana spring rolls?

Monday, 11 May 2015

World flavours: the Netherlands

An overview of the most commonly used ingredients per category. These products can serve as inspiration for your components and compositions.

Vegetables

Potatoes (Bintje, Désirée, Primura, ukama), endive, asparagus, cucumbers, banana shallots, kale, beets, kidney beans, ‘chaser’ tomato, crispsla, eggs, peas, turnips, cabbage, celeriac, cabbage lettuce, curly endive, mild red pepper, novita lettuce, mushrooms, orange sweet peppers, parsnip, snow peas, leeks, radish, round mini peppers, salsify, lettuce, green beans, spinach, split peas, Brussels sprouts, broad beans, white beans, chicory, carrots, black and purple bell pepper, black sweet paprika.

Fruit

Strawberries, apples, blackberries, raspberries, cherries, quince, medlar, pear, plum, rhubarb, red currants, black currants.

Meat, game and poultry

Meat: lamb, horse meat, beef, pork. Game: hares, deer, rabbits, roe, wild boar. Poultry: pigeon, duck, pheasant, geese, roosters, turkey, chicken, grouse, chickens, partridge. Preparations: ‘blinde vinken’, 'slavinken’. Cuts of meat: souse of pork neck, black pudding, beef sausage, 'nagelhout'.

Fish and shellfish

Fish: perch, bream, trout, brill, herring, halibut, cod, carp, pollack, mackerel, eel, stingray, haddock, plaice, pike-perch, smelt, sprat, turbot, sole, tuna, whiting, salmon. Shellfish: shrimp, crab, lobster. Shellfish: clams, mussels North Sea, Zeeland oysters.

Dairy & Cheese

Dairy products: goat's milk, butter milk, cow's milk, sheep's milk, custard, yogurt. Cheese: Bastiaansen blue, blue blauwklaver, boeren sleutelleidse, charmeux, doruvael, Edammer, favorel, Friese clove cheese, geitenrol, lady's blue, Limburg goat cheese, meikaas, messeklever, Old Amsterdam, terra cotta, gouda.

Fats & Oils

Fats: butter, margarine, lard. Oils: olive oil, sunflower oil.

Nuts, seeds & grains

Nuts: chestnut, pine nuts, walnuts, sunflower seeds. Grains: buckwheat, barley, oats, rye, wheat.

Drinks

Typical beverages which are consumed in the Netherlands, which can also be used for cooking; ‘advocaat’, gin, herbal liqueur.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Top chefs inspire with Australian Black Angus Beef

Whether a chef wishes to use commonly-sold or less commonly-sold beef cuts, there isn't really a book or website containing a clear overview of all the different preparations. This year, however, this is set to change! 

Over the course of 2015, Gastronomixs will be collaborating with Nice to Meat to launch six component charts for various cuts of Black Angus beef. The components have been put together by none other than Dutch chefs Cees Helder, Sidney Schutte, Joris Bijdendijk, Schilo van Coevorden, and Mark Vaessen, who all put their heads together to come up with 72 incredible beef dishes. Today we are launching striploin and later this year we will also offer oyster blade, knuckle, rump, rump cap and flap meat! 

The beef components provide an even greater source of creativity for Gastronomixs users!


Thursday, 16 April 2015

Sumac

At Gastronomixs this month, you'll find a composition with Turkish influences: Turkish-style lamb chops, crunchy asparagus with sumac, and caçik foam. Do you ever use sumac in the kitchen? In this blog we'll tell you a bit more about this ingredient.

The sumac is a shrub that grows in the Mediterranean coastal area. It has red sour berries that is most often sold in dried, powdered form. Sumac contains a lot of citrus aromas and also tastes a bit like tamarind. It adds a tangy, spicy touch to your dishes.

In the Middle East, sumac is often used with meat, such as lamb, fish, stews, yoghurt, nuts, and rice. In Turkey, it is often eaten in starters with thinly sliced onions, or is incorporated in sauces to accompany kebabs. It is also a basic ingredient in several herb mixtures, such as za'atar. When buying sumac berries, you are advised to soak them first. The water that turns sour because of the berries can then be used, for example in marinades or dressings.

It is a very special berry which goes particularly well with asparagus!

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Gnocchi

In the recently added chart for spinach you will find a recipe for spinach gnocchi. Today we will tell you more about this delicious Italian dish which is perfect for trying out endless variations.

Gnocchi is a type of pasta made from potatoes. The best potatoes to use for gnocchi are old, floury potatoes. These are suitable as they contain less water and more starch than waxy potatoes, which means you don't have to add as much flour (gluten) and they produce a softer gnocchi. The classic way to prepare gnocchi is to peel the potatoes when cooked and purée them immediately to allow most of the moisture to evaporate. The potatoes are then cooled and mixed with precisely enough flour (usually less than 120 grams per 500 grams of potatoes). Just enough flour is added to absorb the moisture and provide gluten to create a cohesive dough. The dough is shaped into a long thin cylinder that is then cut into pieces. These pieces are boiled in water until they rise to the surface. 

Gnocchi is easy to make and suitable for freezing, allowing you to prepare large quantities at less busy times. Besides spinach gnocchi, you'll also find two other variations at Gastronomixs: green herb gnocchi and potato gnocchi with Parmesan.

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Nut oils

Nuts are extremely nutritious ingredients, rich in proteins, vitamins, fibre, and especially fats! The high fat content of nuts is due to the large amount of oil found in them. This blog explains about the different types of nut oil available and what they can be used for.

Oil per nut
Nuts do not store their energy in starch but in oil, which is why they each contain a large amount. The amount of oil also differs per type of nut. These fats, which are predominantly unsaturated, produce a pleasant buttery sensation in the mouth.

Nuts: oil percentage edible weight
Type
Oil percentage %
Almond
54
Cashews
46
Hazelnuts
62
Chestnuts
2
Coconuts
35
Macadamia
72
Pecans
68
Pine nuts
47
Peanut
48
Pistachios
54
Walnuts
59

Production
The higher the percentage of oil in a nut, the greater the amount of nut oil produced when the nut is pressed. The amount of oil also depends on the dryness of the nut; nuts that are too dry will produce a minimum amount of oil. There are two ways of extracting oil from nuts: 

Cold-pressed oils: the nut cells are crushed and release the oil under pressure. These cloudy oils have a strong flavour and are used in cold preparations such as dressings or vinaigrettes. 

Hot-pressed oils: the crushed nuts are treated with a solvent at a temperature of 150°C. The solvent ensures the oil is separated. These clear oils have a mild or neutral flavour and are used in preparation methods based on heat such as frying or deep-frying.

Storage
Nut oils are susceptible to oxidation. They must therefore be stored in a dry, dark, and cool place (7-12°C). Home-made oils must be stored in air-tight, dark-coloured bottles.

Never use oils that do not taste or smell of nuts as these will be rancid and can no longer be used.

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Lardo di Colonnata

You can never have too much knowledge about products, which is why today's blog item talks about Lardo di Colonnata.

Lardo di Colonnata is ripened pork lard from the pig's back. In the Netherlands, pork lard is used to line paté dishes, incorporated into sausages, or just thrown away. A special ripened version is produced in Colonnata, Italy.

How is it made? Layer upon layer of pork lard pieces are placed in a marble tub and each layer is liberally sprinkled with dry salt, pepper, rosemary, garlic, and cinnamon. The lard is then left to ripen for between six months and two years. The marble causes the connective tissue to break down, making the lard even softer. The extent to which the lardo is ready is determined by sight. The salt ensures the moisture is extracted whilst also drawing in the flavours of the herbs and spices. By reducing the moisture content and increasing the amount of salt, the lardo can be kept for longer periods.

This pork lard comes from older pigs. Although muscle tissue in pigs becomes tougher with age, the reverse is true for pork lard, which becomes increasingly softer.

This lard is not intended to be used for larding as it melts too quickly. It goes extremely well with fish, as well as asparagus, cherries, and even chips!

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Crisps

Today's blog is all about crisps! Crisps have become a firm staple in many a kitchen cabinet but they also offer endless ways to add a delicious crunch to gastronomic dishes.

Origin
Potato crisps were originally created in an American restaurant when a customer complained about his French fries being too thick and not salty enough. Feeling highly insulted, the chef decided to slice the potatoes wafer thin before deep-frying them and sprinkle them with plenty of salt. The customer, however, thought the crispy potato slices were delicious, and this cynical joke turned out to become the origin of 'crisps'!

Ways to make crisps
Many different versions of crisps have appeared in recent years and potatoes are no longer the only ingredient from which crisps are made. Crisps can be made in a variety of ways, such as baked, dried, or deep-fried. They can easily be made in a drying cabinet although they can also be dried in an oven. The traditional method is to deep-fry them, which results in a very crunchy crisp. You can make aubergine crisps from the skin, for instance, which are delicious with lamb or a Greek yoghurt and honey dip.

Types & combinations
Crisps can be used to add a delicious crunch to a dish and also often provide a decorative touch. Not only that, but you can create endless variations in the types of crisps you make, as well as in their size and shape (e.g. onion crisp, crisp of green herbs, tomato crisps, chocolate crisps, banana crisps with curry). Surprise your guests by serving unusual crisps with a choice of suitable dips.

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Elephant garlic

We're pleased to announce the garlic chart has been placed online this morning! Garlic is a much more versatile ingredient than many people think. Today our blog contains some interesting facts about elephant garlic!

Elephant garlic is quite a bit larger than ordinary garlic, and can even grow to the size of a large white onion (500 grams)! Each head of elephant garlic usually contains five cloves, each of which is larger than a normal head of garlic. Elephant garlic is planted in October and harvested in July.

Also known as wild leek, this type of garlic shouldn't really be called 'garlic' at all. It is believed to be the ancestor of today's leek, and has a refined leek taste. It has a mild, delicate, slightly sweet flavour, making it ideal for use in salads. The garlic is very easy to peel, crush, and chop. Roasted elephant garlic is a true delicacy, and is also a very special component when fermented.

Draw inspiration from the different types of garlic and, of course, from the new garlic chart available at Gastronomixs!

Thursday, 5 February 2015

Ceviche? Carpaccio? No, tiradito!

Asia meets South America in this wonderfully tasty fish dish! Have you ever made it?

Tiradito is a Peruvian variation on ceviche and sashimi. This dish consists of fine strips of chilled raw fish topped with a spicy salsa made from lemon juice and various other ingredients. Unlike most ceviches, the fish is not marinated but, instead, covered with the mixture; it is actually a kind of sashimi with a spicy sauce. Nor does tiradito contain raw onions.
What is essential for a good tiradito, however, is the freshest fish you can find. Salmon and tuna are obvious and delicious choices, but why not try mackerel or scallops? Once you've ticked the fish off the list, make sure you have a sharp knife.

Get the ripest, juiciest lemons and/or limes and mix them with aji amarillo paste, a Peruvian paste made from spicy yellow peppers. Finish off your dish with a variety of toppings, such as coriander, cooked sweetcorn, crunchy potato (crisps) or pickled jalapeño.

With so many possibilities, it's the perfect dish for you to bring your creative ideas to life!


At Gastronomixs you'll find a recipe for scallop tiradito!

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Raisins / currants

The components chart for grapes has been put together with the help of a number of enthusiastic Gastronomixs users. One of the components you'll find, for example, is a purée of raisins and capers. But what is actually the difference between a raisin and a currant?

Both raisins and currants are dried grapes. The difference, however, is that currants are made from a seedless variety of grape with a very small fruit, while raisins are made from a variety of grape with larger fruits. The production process is the same for both, with bunches of grapes left to dry in the sun among vine branches. Moisture levels in the grapes drop and the fruit falls off the stalk. The darker the colour of a currant or raisin, the sweeter it will be. You can also get light coloured currants, of course, which have been immersed in a saline solution, known as potash, before undergoing the drying process. The USA, in particular, is well-known for its currants and raisins and is where the technique was originally developed to be able to keep grapes for longer.


You'll find a variety of components containing raisins on Gastronomixs. How about a tangy redcabbage, ginger, and raisin salad for example? What will you use them for?

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Gelatin

In this blog we'll be giving you a refresher on gelatin! Gelatin is incorporated in many products in which it cannot easily be substituted. It is usually made from proteins from the bones and skins of pigs and is sold in two forms: gelatin leaves and powdered gelatin. Although both produce the same result, there are some differences between them. 

Powdered gelatin
Powdered gelatin is often used to make sweets as it is more resistant to heat than gelatin leaves. Powdered gelatin needs to be dissolved in the liquid you eventually use. This liquid is initially at room temperature or cooler, is allowed to stand for 15 minutes after you add the gelatin, and can be heated up to a maximum of 50 degrees. 

Gelatin leaves
Gelatin leaves can absorb ten times their actual weight in moisture. It is therefore important for the gelatin to be soaked in cold water at a temperature of 7 degrees. This will make it easier for the gelatin to dissolve afterwards in a warm liquid. Due to the small surface area of gelatin leaves, less air gets into the liquid, making the leaves suitable for making clear jellies, for example.

Gelatin is used in cooking not only as a gelling agent, but also as a binding agent, emulsifying agent, and stabiliser. Gelatin must never be allowed to boil. This is because it is a protein that will coagulate at high temperatures and lose its gelling ability. If you want to substitute gelatin leaves with powdered gelatin, remember that one gelatin leaf is equivalent to 1.5 grams of powdered gelatin.

Want to know how you could use gelatin in the kitchen? At Gastronomixs you'll find various components containing gelatin!

Thursday, 15 January 2015

Must-read: Quique Dacosta

A recurring item on the Gastronomixs blog: the must-reads in culinary literature!

Books on culinary themes and cookery books are a source of inspiration, whether culinary literary classics or new books hot off the press. The recipes printed in cookery books can be used to master a technique, try out a flavour combination, or discover a new way to prepare a familiar ingredient. But above all, the most enjoyable aspect is coming up with new takes on existing recipes.

Through his self-titled book, this month's guest chef, Quique Dacosta***, gives us a glimpse into his world and evolution, based on the three pillars of knowledge, culinary ecosystems, and research. He looks back at his cuisine over a period from 2000 to 2006, and reflects on his developments and discoveries. The book contains more than 90 dishes from this period, accompanied by beautiful photography.

It is part of a multimedia project, which also includes a website called Quique Dacosta's Universe. By purchasing the book, you will also be able to access the site. Although you can also visit the site without purchasing the book, you will only be able to see a selection of previews.


This book is a definite must-have for your bookcase; not only does it look good, you can also learn a lot from it! Click here to see the three compositions he shares with us this month.