Friday, March 23, 2012

How-To: Boil Water


Hello again!  Remember me?  It just seems like my breaks between posts keep getting longer and longer, don't they?  But I promise I'll always return!

Anyway, we're down to 36 days until the wedding!  Can you freakin' believe it?!  Just yesterday, I could remember it being ages away (like 2 years away!).  And it's coming up quickly.  We pretty much have everything taken care of, just need to make the final payments on some things and we'll be good to go. 

I'm in between quarters at school (next quarter starts Monday - BAKING! - so expect a bunch of baked goods in the near future) and catching up on some spring cleaning, so I haven't done much cooking - especially since life is crazy busy!  I know the title of this post may deter some of you, I mean, hell... shouldn't we all know how to boil water?  Believe it or not, I've actually seen a lot of people that do this incorrectly!  Take my lovely other half, for instance.  I find him putting the pasta in the pot, covering it with water, and THEN putting it on the stove.  I can even admit that I'm guilty of this every now and then.  A lot of people think that it's faster to do it that way, but honestly - it just wastes more time! 

So this isn't necessarily a "how-to" per se, but more of a post of tips.  So let's get to it!

1. Starting with cold water, put enough water into a pot to cover whatever you'll end up boiling (i.e. pasta).  Bring water to a boil over high heat.  Add salt to season.


2. Add your desired food to the water (in my case, pasta).  The temperature will drop when you add the food, so you'll want to keep the heat on high to bring it back to a boil.  Then reduce the temperature, as needed, just to maintain a boil.




3. Cook the food until it reaches your desired texture/doneness.

You want to serve boiled food right away, unless you plan on shocking it after (placing in ice water). 



I know this may have seemed like a pointless post to some of you, but I've come to learn that the little things are what make your meals amazing.  Whether it be properly heating up a saute pan, bringing water to a full boil, or even something as simple as adding a pinch more salt to something.  It's the little things that don't get the credit, but it's also the little things that bring something from "meh" to "wow, what's your secret?!" 

Hope everyone has a great weekend!  I've got to work at the restaurant tonight, but I've got the whole weekend off.  Andy and I are planning on being lazy - but that never works out!  See you guys in a few days =)

48 comments:

  1. Congratulations on your upcoming wedding, Peggy! So funny how your blog has transcended from boyfriend to fiance, and now to husband! How exciting for you both!

    Also, I’m having a great giveaway today with four potential prize winners, so you should enter!

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  2. A tip for a tip! Tit for tat? Hmm... Anyways, I also learned when making pasta to bunch it all together in your hands, then give it a slight twist (like a pepper grinder). then putting the pasta in the middle of the pot and letting them fall out, so the sort of umbrella out from the middle. Stops pasta from sticking together AND it looks cool :p

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  3. Always good to review the basics. Best wishes on your upcoming nuptials!

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  4. You do sound busy these days but I am glad you found time to squeeze in this post. Congrats on the upcoming wedding! I know you must be excited and I am glad everything is already in order so you can ease into that day arriving. Have a great weekend.I like that you covered this, I am sure there are a lot of people that needed a refresher or never knew how to do this.

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  5. Wow - I can't believe it's a month away. So exciting! This seems simple, but trust me, there are many folks I know who need this refresher.

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  6. Not pointless at all, Peggy, but something to bear in mind when cooking. Sometimes we have to start with boiling water (as in pasta) or start with cold water (as in stocks or eggs). Am excited for you! Hope all goes well with the wedding and other stuff.

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  7. Your wedding is coming so quickly!! The basics are always important in cooking.

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  8. You and your other half must be so excited for the big day!! Believe me, it will go by so quickly, but the memories are forever with you to cherish! =]
    Your post reminded me of Tyler Florence's old show "how to boil water". Very helpful! xoxo

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  9. Good for you for keeping your blog going with a little over a month to your wedding! Obviously a multi-tasker! :) Congratulations on your up-and-coming event! One thing I would like to add to your post - it that water boils at a lower temperature at higher altitudes and by adding quite a bit of salt, you can bring the boiling temperature of water up some. I live a mile high so I deal with this a lot! It comes to a boil faster, but since the temperature is lower, it takes longer for things to cook. Great post! A lot of science in boiling water. :)

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  10. I love this post ;) Like someone mentioned, it is always good to go over the basics from time to time :) When I first started following your blog you were in the beginning stages of your engagement. And now, you're reaching the final stages! How exciting!!

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  11. I'm so excited for you about your upcoming wedding! I know you must be so excited. I could do with a lessen to boiling water for pasta because I always throw the pasta in before it boiling. Yes.. I'm guilty. So this lesson was not lost on me. :) Have a great weekend! ~ Ramona

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  12. Of course I remember you Peggy!!....I`m so happy for your wedding!!.....I will pray for you to have the best moment of your life....please post pictures!!.....all the best..........Abrazotes, Marcela

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  13. I'm excited for you about your upcoming wedding! Great post.

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  14. You have been terribly missed! So happy that you are soon going to change your blog title! ;-)

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  15. I still remember you Peggy and I can understand that with the wedding and all that you are doing, time is really an issue esp when it comes to blogging.

    I like the pics and sharing on how to make this simple recipe and they sure look good.

    Happy weekend to you too.

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  16. So good to see a post from you, Peggy! My very smart hubby does not know how to boil pasta...he'll start putting it in before the water boils :/ Point is...this is useful information! Hope the wedding countdown is going smoothly!!!

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  17. What a cute little refresher course, I know that there are some who will benefit from this, I know a few, not me though, LOL. Congrats on your wedding, I am new here and have ejoyed your post. Best wishes to you both. Have a wonderful weekend.

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  18. I have to admit that sometimes I am so impatient and don't wait for my water to fully boil. I need one of those quick boiling stoves.

    And how exciting that your wedding is so close! It will be here before you know it!

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  19. Peggy, believe it or not, one of the "recipes" I was given MANY moons ago (as a young bride) was "how to boil water!" I think it's marvelous that you don't "assume" folks know how to do everything. I also wanted to let you know that you've won The Versatile Blogger Award. :) (see: http://alittlelunch.com/2012/03/24/march-gladness/ ) Congrats and let the COUNTDOWN to your wedding be smooth and effortless!

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  20. Congratulations!! Sometimes the easiest simplest things are the hardest!

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  21. A very helpful and basic lesson! Good luck with the rest of your wedding preparations, and I hope you'll share some photos of the wedding.

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  22. I am guilty of dumping pasta in semi-boiling water and then wait for ages to boil again.

    Wow 36 days! Hope you have a nice honeymoon planned! You deserve to take some good break!

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  23. A great basic post! and 36 days!!! That awesome... very excited for you, Peggy! Enjoy this time :) Blessings...

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  24. There are NO pointless posts! And 36 days!? So soon, can't wait for the picture :)

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  25. Wow---36 days! Time flies, doesn't it?!

    These are the types of lessons I need...it's all those little details about cooking that I don't necessarily know!

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  26. Pointless? Not at all! You can't go wrong with a good plate of pasta. And only 36 days? Wow! So soon! I'm really excited for you :-)

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  27. I'm glad to hear I'm doing it right! Great post...I'm always surprised at what I take for granted that people know about cooking.

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  28. I love pasta!! Mmmmm. Getting close! Hope everything is coming together nicely! :)

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  29. I've never heard of putting pasta in the water before it boils! I'm glad to know I'm doing it right :-) Can't believe the wedding is so close!

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  30. This isn't pointless Peggy! I'm sure this will be useful to a lot of people out there. :)
    Glad that you still find time to make a post despite your being so busy! Hope everything is going smoothly with your wedding preparation...

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  31. Hi peggy,
    Thanks for sharing wonderful tips. Have a wonderful week ahead. Thanks & Regards, Sonia !!!

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  32. I think there's lots of people who could use this advice. Sometimes it's the simple things that confound people. So excited for you and the wedding. Silly advice but just try to remember to enjoy it. It all goes by so quickly.

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  33. I can't believe the wedding is so close!!
    Since I think this is a helpful post, and since I live in Italy, I wanted to add a few more tips. Hope you don't mind.
    1) Always boil pasta in abundant water, especially long pasta, not just enough to cover it.
    2) Salt the water when it is boiling, not at the beginning. Salt water takes longer to boil.
    3) Italians never serve sauce on the pasta (although it looks much better in photos, I agree), but mixed in (often 'mantecata', or moved to the pan/pot when it is slightly undercooked and mixed with the sauce and grated cheese). It keeps the pasta from sticking and melds the flavors, plus the pasta stays hot longer.
    Ciao!

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  34. Wow soon the day comes up and it cant be my bf likes.... haha

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  35. All the best for married life! Thanks for the tips...

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  36. Congrats to the future happiness and specialy life ahead you are a wonderful cook and will be an awesome wife!

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  37. You even make boiling sound fun!

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  38. Congrat's on your wedding day coming up soon. I will be married 28 years May 20th so you'll also be a May wedding.

    Great tip on boiling water and placing food in boiling water to cook. These are all important rules to follow especially when you're not just cooking for one anymore.

    Best wishes to you on your special day.

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  39. Congrats on ur wedding.. love to see more of ur cooking..

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  40. Congrats on the wedding..how exciting!!!
    Great post, very helpful!!!Have a lovely day!

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  41. Gosh, I think we're going to see another change in your blog name soon :) My hubby needs this tutorial...what seems a no brainer for those of us who are constantly in the kitchen can be fouled up by the novice.

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  42. Nice post Peggy, very helpful!!

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  43. This sounds so incredibly flavorful!

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  44. Yeah - I am doing it right too.

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  45. You're totally cracking me up :-)

    I found your site through another blog and just subscribed to your feed.

    Can't wait to see what your next creation is!

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