Cooking Q&A with Peter Gordon
The executive chef of dine by Peter Gordon at Sky City answers your cuisine questions.

Frying onions to perfection

By Peter Gordon


The executive chef of dine by Peter Gordon at SkyCity answers your cuisine questions.

Stirring onions and garlic in the pan at the beginning of a dish is ok. Photo / Hawkes Bay Today
Stirring onions and garlic in the pan at the beginning of a dish is ok. Photo / Hawkes Bay Today

A chef on a Food Channel programme said that when you're melting onions and garlic and other chopped veges in a pan at the beginning of the dish, you shouldn't stir them, you should only shake the pan. Why is this?
- Melanie

That's one opinion. If you have just one onion and a clove of garlic that may work, but try shaking a pot with six of each in it - impossible. Stir away - it'll do no harm. If you don't want your onions to colour add a little salt to the pan (it draws out the moisture) and avoid cooking over high heat to start, as they'll just burn rather than "melt" into the pan.

I read somewhere that pressure cookers were undergoing a revival. I remember scary steam and Mum worried about explosions, and bland corned beef and cabbage dinners from my childhood. What's the difference with the new cookers?
- Mason Price

I "test-drove" a cooker for Alessi 10 years ago and it was wonderful. I've never heard evidence of an exploding cooker - I think a lot of it was urban myth.

The new ones have moved on in design but basically do the same as their grandparents - and they speed up cooking, saving resources and lowering your carbon footprint.

In yet another count of "in" foods and "out" foods I read that black rice is the new black - is it the same as wild rice from America?
- Sarah

They may be referring to black glutinous rice from Southeast Asia - which is lovely but will never replace white or brown rice, as the texture is more starchy. Wild rice isn't actually rice at all - it's the grain from a type of wild grass from North America. Again, as much as it's lovely, it's as different to white rice as barley is.

* To ask Peter a question, click on the Email Peter link below.

- NZ Herald

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