Jenna Seco is Made In's Hospitality and Partnerships Lead and an alumna of The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone. You can catch Jenna cooking Philip Krajeck's Quick Roast Chicken on the @madein Instagram tonight, April 2, at 6pm CST with fellow CIA alum and AGM of Austin hotspot Carpenters Hall Drew Ahumada. Here are three cooking notes straight from their kitchen that go along with that recipe but are applicable to a number of other recipes!
1. The benefits of good butter and why many prefer unsalted butter
More expensive butter almost always has more fat and richer flavors than your run-of-the-mill grocery store butter, meaning the food you use it with is going to be elevated as a result. We're going to be using butter from our favorite butter company, Banner Butter in Atlanta, Georgia. It's some of the best cultured butter we've ever used and we're so excited that Jonathan from Banner Butter will be tuning in to Team Dinner tonight to answer any questions you might have about butter (Jonathan also gave us code madein10 for 10% off Banner Butter to share with you!).
Using unsalted butter allows you to control the seasoning more easily, especially if you're using ingredients that already have sodium in them.
2. Why using acidic foods in carbon steel isn't always bad
While it's true acidic foods like tomatoes and citrus will strip away your pan's seasoning, this isn't an issue if your pan is seasoned in enough. The more layers of seasoning on your pan, the more acid can be used in it.
3. What preserved lemons are and what they add to a dish
Preserved lemons are salt-cured lemons popular in Middle Eastern cuisine that add a bright burst of tame-yet-robust citrus flavor to any dish. They've been described by many chefs as having umami qualities. Preserved lemon is used because it's not as acidic as your common lemon and works really well for savory dishes.
We're using Meyer lemon for this recipe because it's the traditional lemon for preserving and we didn't have time to preserve.