Wagyu/Kobe

OK, let’s keep it simple.  All Kobe is Wagyu, but not all Wagyu is Kobe.  Kobe is a registered trademark developed in Japan around 1983 to distinguish the strict rules surrounding the growth, feed, and finishing of the 4 types of Wagyu cattle in Japan.  True Kobe is ridiculously high in fat content (look at the picture!)! but oddly, much higher in unsaturated fat producing oleic acid, the stuff that makes for good cholesterol.

Beef labeled “Kobe Style” or “Wagyu” in the US is usually a cross-breed of Wagyu and Angus.

Whip Me, Beat Me, Make Me Fluffy!

Cool Citrus Pie

Let’s face it.  The reason we love whipped cream so much is because of the FAT in it.  The amazing velvety texture sliding around in our mouths…..and we all know, homemade whipped cream is the BEST.

How do you make the best whipped cream possible?  Understanding fat’s role in the whipping process will help you to never forget the basics:  “Whipped Cream” means air bubbles have been introduced into the cream.  The bubbles are suspended by the fat, which when properly chilled, are perfectly round, smooth globules that encase the air and keep the cream structure “lifted”.  As the cream warms, the fat globules become broken and irregular and have a hard time supporting the air volume.

Here’s what Lula does…put the beaters in the bowl and put the bowl in the freezer for ten minutes.  Pull your cream out of the refrigerator at the last possible second, and have your flavorings “at the ready” (mise en place, remember?).  It should take no more than about 80 seconds to more than double the volume of a cup of cream if the temperature is right!  Happy Whipping! 🙂

MSG – Hell Hath no Fury

app Boudin Stuffed Shrooms

Monosodium Glutamate got lots of attention starting in the 60’s, when “Chinese Restaurant Syndrome” was researched and MSG was named the culprit.  Some, but not all people don’t react well to MSG, even though it is a naturally occurring substance in our bodies (with the largest concentration of it in our nervous system).  MSG is the sodium salt of Glutamic Acid, and it naturally occurs in mushrooms, seaweed, and wheat gluten, as well.

Most manufacturers and restaurants are msg (added) “free” these days…but it is NOT reason for a hissy fit if you feel like your sinuses are swelling or you start sneezing and you find out that something you ate contained a little bit of MSG, or had naturally occurring MSG in it.  In fact, salt and sugar are WAY more dangerous for you than MSG.  Chances are, you’ve been consuming naturally occurring msg your whole life and have never felt a thing!  Lula’s for Lunch…and More! Catering does not add MSG to anything we make, but we do love our mushrooms, our seaweed, and our bread. 🙂 Please enjoy this pic of our Boudin Stuffed Mushrooms above!

Awful Offal (NOT!)

App Brandied Poulet Pate on Slate

Do you like Pate?  Bologna? LIverwurst? Hot Dogs? Chances are you like offal, you just don’t know it.  How about “Sweetbreads with Mignonette Sauce”?

In the United States we tend to squeal a bit when we hear “offal”, but the “parts of an animal that fall off during slaughtering ‘off fall’ ”  are enjoyed and respected the world over.  Eating not only the working muscle of an animal but all parts is the best respect you can show the life that feeds you (you’ve heard me talk about “nose to tail” before…).  Enjoying these variety meats also helps to keep the price of the more expensive cuts controlled.

Ever had oxtail stew?  Lula’s for Lunch…and More! Catering’s Oxtail Stew is the BEST!!!