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Tips and Tricks

Our editors enjoy dining out as much as we like cooking at home. And because this is what we do for a living, we've got lots of experience at both. In this column we're sharing the ins and outs of dining in and out. Bon Appetit!


Take a cooking class

Do you find yourself getting a tad bored with what you’ve been making at home? A cooking class can be very inspirational and might be just what you need to send you down a path of new ideas. In Seattle there are many starting with Tom Douglas’ Hot Stove Society, PCC’s on site classes and special events like our own Cooking with Class.

Food Prep

Overnight Brining on the Patio

If you’re using a recipe that calls for overnight brining of a large food item (think Turkey, Ham), availability in the fridge may be a little tight, especially if it’s the holidays. If the overnight temperatures will be in the 20’s or 30’s you’re in luck. An alternative is to take that carcass, place it in a small ice chest, then pour in your brine or marinate and place it outside in the cold air. Just be sure it’s critter proof so some racoon or bear doesn’t spoil the big meal the next day.

Healthy Eating

The thing about filtered water

Filtered water is a wonderful thing to have in the kitchen. No one wants to cook with all the chemicals used in the water supply, so let's not. But let's keep a few things in mind here. Those filters need to be changed. Most last 6 months to a year. The way to know is when you notice a decline in the volume of water the spicket puts out. That's your signal to change out the filter. Secondly, although we might think we're doing our dogs or cats a favor by providing them with filtered water, were not. Dogs and cats can benefit from fluoride the way the rest of us do. Without it we can wind up with some expensive vet bills or lose a pet when their teeth fail and allow bacteria to reach major organs. Water them up right off the straight tap and don't feel bad about it.

Healthy Eating

Do you know if you’re diabetic or will be soon?

If you don’t think you’re diabetic, consider getting an HbA1c blood test the next time you’re with your doctor. Detecting a pre-diabetes condition ahead of time means you can work backwards using a healthy diet and avoid becoming a diabetic. Finding out too late can mean no turning back. The test is relatively inexpensive and save you money and trouble later if pre-diabetes is confirmed.


Make Your Own Stocks and Broths

The supermarket isles of filled with quarts and quarts of chicken, vegetable, beef and other stalks and broths. But inside e very box is usually an overabundance of salt and lack of flavor. It’s easy to make your own stocks and broths in a large pot or slow cooker. When done, use what you need for soups or rice and freeze the rest for later.

Have you got a tip or trick you'd like to share with out readers? Send it to If we use it, we'll send you a copy of our Cooking with Class cookbook.

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