I have decided to focus on how I can improve my cooking skills. This is important to me because I enjoy cooking and think that it is a valuable thing that everyone should know how to do. I also would like to improve my cooking skills. I enjoy cooking but am not very good at it I want to learn how to be a better cook and learn to cook effectively. I would like to see the progress I can make in this six week period. I want to learn how to perfect certain dishes such as chips and salsa or something else that is simple. I want to be able to make really good food instead of just okay food. In addition I want to learn how to cook with good ingredients as well. I also need to learn how to cook faster in the kitchen, and how to do a neater job of cooking in the kitchen. I hope for this to be an experience that isn’t to complicated yet simple. I hope for this experience to be productive and helpful. And finally my primary goal is just to be able to be able to cook a meal, do a good job of it, do it effectively, and not make a mess.
So far what I've learned about my topic is that many different people have different opinions about food. You might think something needs less salt but others think that it needs more salt. What I've learned in cooking is that it's important to listen to other's opinions on your cooking but it's also very important to be happy with your food and put what you think it needs into it. What I've learned about myself is that anyone can cook and i'm not as bad at it as I thought you just have to find a recipe and then the rest is up to you all you have to do is be careful when you're cooking. I used food.com as my source to find the chili's salsa recipe. I used my mom, brother, sister, and friends to try my salsa and tell me what they thought of it and give their opinions. From here I will improve the recipe by adding more of what it needs and less of what it doesn't I will be using the same recipe for week two and asking the same group of people what they think it needs I want to perfect the recipe and make it better and less bland.
What I've learned about cooking this week is that simplicity is key. Sometimes adding a lot of ingredients is to much. When you're cooking simplicity is many times best because you don't want to much going on in your dish. Because if something is bland more can always be added if something is to overpowering you can't fix that. What I have learned about myself is that it's great to try new things with cooking and add other new things to dishes that you never would've thought of. For example I learned that adding a little bit of honey to salsa makes it really good. It's not good to use the same exact recipe every time unless you have perfected it. This week I used a recipe from Mountain Mama Cooks and I have say it's the best salsa I've ever had even my mom liked it. I'm taking it to school tomorrow to see how others like it. From here i'm going to try another recipe see which one I like and then perfect it. So far the project is going well.
This week I made two different types of salsa. I made a green sauce with a recipe that said it was similar to the green sauce that casa ole makes from copykat.com. The recipe I used for salsa is the same one that I used last week called easy blender salsa from mountainmamacooks.com. I did add some tweaks to it though I added more onion after tasting it because it tasted sort of bland. I used two jalopeños instead of one I also added more salt a tiny bit more honey. I also used less cilantro than last week. I didn’t think the salsa was as good but everyone seemed to love it and some said that it was the best one that they tasted out of the two previous ones they had tried. I learned this week that to make a good salsa it’s important of the order you put ingredients in the blender. The first time I made this salsa I thought that changing the way I blended it would help the flavor I put the tomatoes in first this week which was a bad idea. After I put each ingredient in I blended them which made the tomatoes have a very pureed texture which wasn’t really the texture I was going for and it also affected the flavor. I will next time put the thicker ingredients first instead of the tomatoes. What I learned about myself was that I have different taste than a lot of people many people like different things than I do I think since I’ve been making and eating so much salsa lately I’ve become very picky to the way it tastes. From here I will tweak the casa ole dip according to what many people have suggested on food websites and make the same salsa but add the ingredients in different orders and add a few more small tweaks to the recipe.
This week I made the same salsa from the key ingredient for the third week in a row I’ve been working on improving it by adding the ingredients into the blender in a different order and also adding a little more of certain ingredients and less of others. And I have to say that the salsa turned out really good. I also made the casa ole green sauce that I made last week. The website I used was called kopycat.com, people were commenting on this website left and write complaining that this isn’t how casa ole sauce is made this isn’t in it that is and so on. One woman made Jen was particularly irritated at the recipe claiming that she had the print out from the restaurant and that it was the real deal the website was wrong but she couldn’t get is post. People from all over were claiming they had worked there and knew the recipe.The common theme amongst these was that green food color was added so the dip wouldn't turn brown fresh garlic is added and cilantro and jalapenos. Another theme amongst these was that no rotel or cream cheese was added. But the comment that stood out the most was from a man that said he was the assistant manager at a casa ole he said that four ingredients weren’t posted in the recipe and that two weren’t in the original recipe. So what I concluded was that rotel and cream cheese needed to be omitted and that green food coloring, fresh garlic, cilantro, and jalapenos needed to be added. So I tweaked the recipe according to that and it turned out great and looked and tasted just like casa ole green sauce. What I’ve learned about my topic is that anyone can make great restaurant like food if they really try and are dedicated to it and tweak things and change stuff up a bit and are always willing to change stuff until they know they’ve made the right recipe. What I’ve learned about myself is that I’m improving at cooking I’m becoming more efficient and neater in the kitchen and am making better food. Fro here I will make the same dips plus a mild version because I’ve already perfected the other dishes I think.
These are the finished products a spicy salsa a mild salsa and a green sauce
I learned a lot about making salsa during these six weeks. I ended up making three types of salsa. So I thought I would include the recipes that I used for the project below.
First the recipe for the spicy salsa this one is pretty simple and doesn't make a mess. The recipe is just called easy blender salsa it's from the website the key ingredient.
The first ingredient is a 14 ounce can of diced tomatoes.
Then a ten ounce can of original Rotel.
Next add half of an onion chopped up.
Then a clove of garlic smashed.
The recipe calls for one jalepeno but I used two because I was making it spicy.
Now the special ingredient one teaspoon of honey I've never heard of putting honey in salsa but the recipe called for it and it actually makes really good salsa. Add more if you want your salsa to be sweeter.
Next add a teaspoon of salt. The recipe calls for a 1/2 a teaspoon of salt but after tasting it I always thought it needed more so I added a full teaspoon.
Then add a quarter of a teaspoon of cumin if you add to much the salsa will taste bad 1/4 of a teaspoon is plenty.
Next add a handful of cilantro. A big handful if you like cilantro less if you don't.
Finally juice a lime and add it two the blender.
After you have all of the ingredients add them to the blender. And then you have salsa. once it's finished add more of what you think it needs such as salt or honey.
The next salsa is a green salsa it's from the website called copykat.com it's supposed to taste just like casa ole green sauce. some people on copykat.com recommended some changes to the recipe. So I decided to follow the tweaks to the recipe and it turned out just like Casa ole green sauce. This recipe can get messy so you have to be careful. It's still simple to make though you just blend all the ingredients together in a blender.
Then add one 16 ounce container of sour cream.
Next add one four ounce can of diced green chiles.
Then add two teaspoons of salt.
Next add the juice of 1 lime. I used a lime you could use a lemon.
The next three ingredients to add are not on the website they're what people recommended to add to make the recipe taste more like casa ole green sauce and I agree they make the green sauce taste more like casa ole's. The tweaks also said to take out a can of Rotel and cream cheese and use real garlic instead of garlic powder.
The first tweak is to add a jalapeno.
Finally a little bit of cilantro.
All the ingredients are added into the blender it can get be hard to blend all of the ingredients up since some of them are pretty thick so it might help to add just a little bit of water to the blender.
The final recipe is a mild sauce I used a recipe from sugarfree.com but I didn't really follow it that much this one is simple to make but if you don't have a big enough blender all of the ingredients will start to overflow out of your blender when you put the lid on. So be careful or you'll make a giant mess like I did.
Add two 14 ounce cans of regular diced tomatoes. And two 10 ounce cans of Rotel.
Next add a cup of chopped onion. The recipe called for a chopped red pepper but I just used two packets of crushed red pepper that you get from gattis and just added it in with the onion and it turned out fine.
Then add a whole jalapeno chopped and seeded with the membrane removed.
Next add two cloves of garlic
Then add half a cup of cilantro.
Finally I added some Tony Chachere's seasoning to give it some flavor. I had never thought of adding this before it was a friend that I ran into at Wal Mart that said it gave the salsa flavor. I have to say adding the seasoning does add some flavor to the salsa.
And that's it those are the recipes for making three types of salsa. My advice to making salsa is you never know what you're gonna get in terms of flavor you just have to taste it and find out what you could add and what you could take out for the next time you make it. Overall I was pleased with my results and would say that the project was pretty successful