Title: Food FAQs: Substitutions, Yields & Equivalents
Author: Linda Resnick and Dee Brock
224 pages; No photographs or illustrations; Softcover
Publisher: FAQs Press, Tyler, TX 2000
Reviewed by, Reviewed for Good Cooking by Pam Rajasekhar 12/02
Who among us has never felt the frustration of
beginning a recipe only to find a key ingredient missing from
the pantry? Food FAQs: Substitutions, Yields & Equivalents is a
handy kitchen reference designed for such kitchen emergencies.
In addition to being a valuable resource in a pinch, Food FAQs
is also an excellent technical reference for cooks who need to
know approximate yields of ingredients prior to cleaning,
washing, cutting, or otherwise preparing them.
paperback volume begins with a comprehensive alphabetical
listing of common substitutions for a variety of items ranging
from allspice to zest of fruit. The remainder of the book deals
with yields and equivalents for all major food categories
including dairy products, fruits, herbs and spices, meats, and
vegetables. This section provides useful tables of information
about volumes and weights of foods before preparation as well as
approximate yields after preparation. Scattered throughout the
book are "Food FAQs Quick Answers", helpful tidbits of
additional information about various types of substitutions or
yields. For example, one Quick Answer notes that most grains
expand to 2 to 4 times their original size when cooked.
In many cases, the substitutions listed in the book are common sense replacements. The book's authors emphasize that the substitutions are acceptable alternatives, but that the end result will not be identical to the original recipe. I put one of the book's substitutions to the test. The substitution of applesauce as a lower-fat alternative to butter in a standard brownie recipe resulted in a reasonable product. In contrast to the butter brownies, those made with applesauce had a slightly drier crumb and were a bit lighter in color. Overall, the substitution seemed like a reasonable one for the purpose of producing a lower-fat product.
I would particularly recommend
Food FAQs to cooks who are interested in larger-scale food
production and need to understand yields of particular
ingredients. The authors have taken the guesswork out of the
food preparation process, saving cooks significant time and
See a sample of the book onYields and Equivalents:Dairy Products, from page 113 Good Cooking thinks that this book should be in everyone's cookbook library , if not handy in your kitchen. Whether you are a seasoned professional or home cook, you can benefit from the information compiled by Linda Resnick and Dee Brock.
Good Cooking is looking forward to
a 2nd edition!
What Can You Use Instead of Buttermilk?
A. Plain yogurt
B. Canned milk with water and vinegar
C. Sour cream
D. Whole or nonfat milk with lemon juice or vinegar
E. All of the above (the correct answer, if you know the proper proportions) (Tyler, Texas)Finding a substitute for buttermilkseems like afoolish quest until you're ready to prepare your favorite cornbread and you findthere's none in the fridge! It''s holiday time, and it's happened to most of us at one time or another. It's late on Thanksgiving or Christmas Eve, you'd just as soon go to bed, but you want to finish just one more item for tomorrow's family feast. And that's when you find you're missing one key ingredient and, of course, the stores are closed for the holiday.
When it comes to a substitute for buttermilk, Food FAQs offers a total of 10 suitable alternatives. But what about other items frequently called for in holiday recipes?
The accompanying chart offers viable substitutes for a dozen more ingredients you will probably use this season.Keep this chart handy. It might save you some frustration in a season already filled with many stressful situations.
Ingredient and Substitutions:
Apple pie spice
(1 tsp.)-(one-half) tsp. ground cinnamon + (one quarter)
tsp. ground nutmeg + 1/8(one-eighth) tsp. ground allspice &
dash of ground cloves or ginger
Baking powder, double acting (1 tsp.) - (one
quarter) tsp. baking soda + (one-half) tsp. cream of tartar;
or (one quarter) tsp. baking soda + (one-half) cup
buttermilk, sour milk or yogurt (to replace [half] cup liquid
in recipe); or (one quarter) tsp baking soda + (one quarter)
cup molasses (reduce liquid in recipe by (one quarter) cup;
adjust sweeteners); or 2 tsp. quick-acting baking powder
Bourbon or whiskey ( [one-half] cup) - (one
quarter) cup unsweetened fruit juice or broth
Buttermilk (1 cup) - 1 cup plain yogurt; or
(one-half) cup canned milk + (one-half) cup water + 1 Tbsp
vinegar; or 1 cup sour cream; or 1-2 Tbsp. lemon juice or
vinegar + nonfat or whole milk to equal 1 cup
Chicken broth (1 cup) -1 chicken bouillon cube
or 1 tsp. granules or 1 envelope chicken bouillon dissolved in 1
cup of boiling water
Chocolate, semisweet (1 oz) -3 Tbsp. semisweet
chocolate pieces; or 1 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder + 1 Tbsp
sugar & 1 Tbsp shortening; or (one-half) oz unsweetened
chocolate + 1 Tbsp granulated sugar; or 1 oz bittersweet
Flour, all purpose (1 cup) -1 cup + 2 Tbsp.
sifted cake flour; or 1 cup self-rising flour (omit baking
powder and salt from recipe); or 1 cup minus 1 Tbsp pre-sifted
floor; or 1 cup corn meal; or (three-quarters) cup gluten
Heavy cream (1 cup) - (three-quarters) cup
milk + 1/3(one-third) cup melted butter or margarine; or 1 cup
light cream; or 1/3 (two-thirds) cup evaporated milk; or 1 cup
evaporated skim milk; or 2 tsp. cornstarch or 1 Tbsp flour
whisked into 1 cup nonfat milk
Molasses (1 cup)- 1 cup honey; or
(three-quarters) cup brown or white sugar + (one quarter) cup
liquid; or 1 cup dark corn syrup; or 1 cup maple syrup
Orange peel, fresh (1 tsp.)- 1 tsp. dried
orange peel; or 1 tsp. orange marmalade; or 1 tsp. lemon or lime
Pumpkin (any amount) -equal amount of cooked,
pureed winter squash, carrots or sweet potato
Rum ( [one-half] cup) - (one half) cup brandy
or cognac; or (one half) cup unsweetened orange juice or apple
juice + 1 tsp. corresponding flavored extract or zest
Zest of fruit, fresh (1 tsp.) -1 tsp. dried zest of fruit; or (one-half) tsp. extract of fruit; or 2 Tbsp. fresh juice of fruit; or 2 tsp. grated candied peel of fruit