Fruits and Vegetables

What Makes Some Onions Sweet

Why are some onions such as Walla Wallas or Vadalias sweeter than others? --Syl Onions such as Walla Wallas, Vadalias, Mauis and others are sweet because they have lower quantities of the sulfur compounds that cause the "bite" associated with more pungent onions. There is some discussion as to whether this is because the particular variety is less capable of... Read more →




Due to the volume of questions received, not all can be answered, nor can we guarantee we will answer questions immediately
© Lost Hobbit Enterprises 2004 onward


Squash Casserole Turned Black

I have recently started cooking with whole wheat flour because of the nutrition and flavor. I recently made a squash casserole using whole wheat flour. I put it in the fridge until I had time to bake it the next day. When I took it out of the fridge, it had turned dark on the top. What happened and why... Read more →




Due to the volume of questions received, not all can be answered, nor can we guarantee we will answer questions immediately
© Lost Hobbit Enterprises 2004 onward


Canning Barbecue Sauce

I have been making my own barbecue sauce. As of yet I have not been able to make the sauce thick enough. When I do achieve the right thickness and process bottles in a pressure cooker, the thickener I use breaks down and my sauce is the consistency of water. Any suggestions on the best thickeners to use? --Bob Since... Read more →




Due to the volume of questions received, not all can be answered, nor can we guarantee we will answer questions immediately
© Lost Hobbit Enterprises 2004 onward


How to Stop Guacamole from Turning Black

I have heard that to stop guacamole from turning black that you should save the avocado pit and put it on top of the guacamole once it is made. How does this work? --Marc This tip works only if the avocado pit is big enough to completely cover the bowl from edge to edge. What it does is exclude oxygen.... Read more →




Due to the volume of questions received, not all can be answered, nor can we guarantee we will answer questions immediately
© Lost Hobbit Enterprises 2004 onward


Open Freezing

This summer we had a large crop of raspberries which I froze to use later. They are now one solid block of ice. Is there any way I can freeze them so that I can measure out the amount I need rather than having to chip chunks out of a block? --Joan You can freeze berries, beans, and other fruits... Read more →




Due to the volume of questions received, not all can be answered, nor can we guarantee we will answer questions immediately
© Lost Hobbit Enterprises 2004 onward


Freezing Green Tomatoes

Can green tomatoes be frozen? We love fried green tomatoes and we have a lot of green tomatoes that we hate to throw away. I was wondering if they can be saved by freezing. --Don Fresh tomatoes, red or green, can be frozen by simply removing the hard portion at the stem end using a sharp paring knife. Place the... Read more →




Due to the volume of questions received, not all can be answered, nor can we guarantee we will answer questions immediately
© Lost Hobbit Enterprises 2004 onward


Tomato Concassé

I have a recipe that asks for "tomato concassé". What is it and how is it used? --Julie Tomato concassé (pronounced "kon-kah-SAY") is a dice of tomatoes which have been peeled and the seeds removed. Recipes that use concassé are striving for a finer result, showing that you cared enough about the quality of the final product to remove seeds,... Read more →




Due to the volume of questions received, not all can be answered, nor can we guarantee we will answer questions immediately
© Lost Hobbit Enterprises 2004 onward


Chili Pepper Heat

I've heard that most of the heat in hot peppers is in the seeds and that if you remove them, the pepper will be mild. Is that true? --Robert The active ingredient in peppers that makes them hot is a "capsaicin" (pronounced "cap-SAY-i-sin"), a colorless, pungent, crystalline compound, C18H27NO3. The amount of capsaicin varies not only with the type of... Read more →




Due to the volume of questions received, not all can be answered, nor can we guarantee we will answer questions immediately
© Lost Hobbit Enterprises 2004 onward


Vegetable Shopping

One way to save on grocery bills while serving top quality food is to be a conscious shopper, making sure that you are buying the best ingredients. Not only will they taste better, they will handle more consistently and last longer in storage. Here are some examples. In the grocery store recently, I was picking over the green beans. Another... Read more →




Due to the volume of questions received, not all can be answered, nor can we guarantee we will answer questions immediately
© Lost Hobbit Enterprises 2004 onward


Black Spots on Potatoes after Boiling

Sometimes, when I boil potatoes, after I drain them I find gray or black spots on the surface. What is this, and are they still safe to eat? -- Marianna Those spots are caused by a chemical reaction involving iron, the phenolic compound chlorogenic acid and oxygen. Because it occurs more often at the end of the potato closest to... Read more →




Due to the volume of questions received, not all can be answered, nor can we guarantee we will answer questions immediately
© Lost Hobbit Enterprises 2004 onward