What is it with pan and pot lids? Despite having a well-stocked and seemingly organized kitchen, time and time again I find myself searching high and low to find the matching topper for the pans in my cupboard. Even worse, many (I'm looking at you, sauté pans) don't come with a lid in the first place. So what's a girl to do?
Searing meat, sautéing onions, or stir-frying veggies in a sauté pan can cause a layer of caramelization to form on the bottom of the pan. Stainless steel pans are the most notorious for burning. To avoid this, try a nonstick or cast iron pan instead, because the mixture of fat, carbohydrate, and protein molecules won't as readily stick to the bottom of the pan and cause burning. Even if the pan is edging on the side of burned, whatever you do, don't toss it carelessly in the sink. Take a deep breath, lower the heat, and assess the damage first. If it is mostly black, scrape the meat or vegetables onto a clean plate quickly, then soak the pan in soapy water to make the cleaning process easier. Transfer the contents of the plate onto a clean pan if they are not cooked thoroughly. Only this time, add sufficient oil, and keep the flame low to prevent burning.
Otherwise, if the "caramelization" is a dark brown with a few spots of black, then deglaze the pan instead! Despite its unattractive appearance, the layer of dried juices is called the "fond." In French, it means "base" or "foundation," and it acts as the base of many pan sauces. Even though it appears messy and unusable, it is actually condensed flavor and will add unbelievably delicious depth to whatever you are cooking, whether it's sauces, gravies, or bases for soups.
Thanks (or no thanks) to the writers' strike, FX's Rescue Me won't be back on the air for its fifth season till Spring 2009. But Denis Leary and company weren't about to make fans go that long without at least a little taste of New York firefighter life.
On Tuesday, FX premiered the first of 10 Rescue Me "minisodes," bite-sized bits of the show (all approximately five minutes long) that are meant to tide fans over till next year. Each minisode will premiere at 10 p.m. on Tuesday for the next nine weeks; 10 minutes later, they'll show up on Crackle, and by the next day they'll spread through various other online video sites.
The first minisode, "Fast," finds Sean Garrity struggling to maintain his cleansing fast in the face of Lou's doughnuts. If you're a fan, will it be enough to get you through to next year? To watch "Fast" for yourself, just read more
- Think you know all there is to know about Gilmore Girls?
- Think you know all there is to know about Gilmore Girls? Take GeekSugar's Gilmore Girls tech quiz and find out if you remember some of the gadgets used on the show.
- Popwatch has another installment of America's Next Top Doll, and this one's so funny, it'll "gut" you. Yuk, yuk, yuk.
- You Ain't No Picasso has My Morning Jacket's entire three-hour Bonnaroo set available for download. What are you waiting for? Go!
- Everyone's atwitter over Jason Bateman's latest comments regarding the Arrested Development movie (apparently it's happening for real and will be released in 2009).
- TV with MeeVee has a long interview with Denis Leary of Rescue Me.
- Stereogum alerts us to new tracks by Beck, now streaming on iLike. My take? I like. A lot.
- TV Squad pitches five funny Angel/Buffy spinoffs.
- Can't get enough of Entertainment Weekly's Top 1000 issue? Neither can Vulture, which points out 10 head-slapping pairings on the various top 10 lists.
Weeds: Season 3
I added the third season of the hit Showtime series Weeds to my must-haves for June because it's a must-watch before the fourth season starts up this month. This is a series I love to own because I want to watch the lovely Mary-Louise Parker and gang whenever I get the urge.
As I said in my must-haves post, the seasons prior to this one always balanced dark elements with high comedy but this third go-around is mostly dark. New faces in the cast this third season include Matthew Modine playing a real estate mogul and Mary-Kate Olsen as the religious (yet still tokey) girlfriend of Nancy's (Parker) son Silas. Even Carrie Fisher pops up — but that's all I'll say, so as not to spoil the fun.
Special features include eight commentary tracks, the full set of Good Morning Agrestic videos, and a sampler of the show's soundtrack.
Two more new titles — one TV, one movie — up next. So read more
- Variety writes that Fox has set a release date for the second X-Files movie: July 25, 2008.
- All My Children star Justin Bruening will be the new Knight Rider, reports Zap2it.
- ComingSoon reports that Natalie Portman is starting a production company and will make her directorial debut with A Tale of Love and Darkness.
- According to Hollywood Reporter, FX has ordered a fifth season of Rescue Me.
- Variety reports that Forest Whitaker will produce a Showtime series called Mr. Untouchable about a "flashy Harlem heroin dealer."
- James Marsden will join Cameron Diaz for the thriller The Box, writes Zap2It.
- A YouTube series called We Need Girlfriends could become a CBS comedy produced by Sex and the City's Darren Star, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
- According to Billboard, Jewel is going country with her brand-new Nashville-based label.
- Variety has news about a sequel to Dances With Wolves, titled The Holy Road and directed by Simon Wincer.
- Dennis Miller has signed on to host the NBC game show Amnesia; details are at The Futon Critic.