Cooking Tips and Questions - Measuring Food?




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ChileanChick
09-30-2008, 09:50 PM
Hi everyone...
I have never ever cooked in my life so Ive got a question for you... today I was reading the nutricional information for pasta (yey, I had never done that either) and well it said one portion is half a cup, so the question is, I measure before or after cooking?
The same goes with dehydrated meat (sorry I donīt know how you call it in english) it talks of "two tablespoons" is that before or after you hydrate it?

So, you measure food before or after cooking?


PhotoChick
09-30-2008, 09:54 PM
Ah this is something that is difficult to learn when you first start cooking. Eventually you'll get the hang of it.

Cooked pasta is usually measured by volume (e.g. a cup)
Dry pasta is usually measured by weight (e.g. oz or grams)

The dehydrated stuff - I'm assuming you're talking about meat stock powder or bullion? - is measured dry, before you add water.

.

ChileanChick
09-30-2008, 10:11 PM
Wow, thanks!!!
So it´s half cup of cooked pasta!

Another question, veggies are weighed before cooking or after??, if it says 100 grams of broccoli its before or after cooking it? Sorry, but I have never cooked before!


ChileanChick
09-30-2008, 10:11 PM
Ahh great that the "meat" is measured before, if not it would have been a veryyyy small portion!!!!

zenor77
09-30-2008, 10:19 PM
I would say the broccoli is after cooking. The dried meat would be before cooking.

I have to disagree with Photochick on the pasta measurement though. I think it depends. I think that pasta is measured before cooking if you are getting the nutritional information off of the bag/box. I have never seen a bag of pasta that had measurements for after it was cooked (some have weight, some have measurements for dry on the bag/box.) A half a cup dry seems about right for 2 oz serving of pasta. However, if you are getting your information somewhere else, like a diet book, then measure after cooking.

PhotoChick
09-30-2008, 10:31 PM
I have never seen a bag of pasta that had measurements for after it was cooked
I'm looking at the side of the box right now for Barilla Whole Grain spaghetti and it says: Serving Size: 2 oz (about 1 cup cooked).

:)

.

zenor77
09-30-2008, 10:54 PM
I've never bought that brand. I stand corrected. :)

Of course, my bag of egg noodles says a serving is 2oz (approx 3/4 cup dry.) So I guess it just depends on the brand.

zenor77
09-30-2008, 11:08 PM
ChileanChick~ I don't want my banter back and forth with Photochick to confuse you! You're probably better off measuring after it's cooked. Unless the bag/box you are cooking from tells you otherwise.

BlueToBlue
10-05-2008, 01:51 AM
If you are looking at the nutritional data on a package of food, in the US the FDA requires that the nutritional information be provided for the food as it comes out of the package, even though you might not eat it that way. If the nutritional information is for the food after it is cooked or prepared in some other way, the label has to state that. If the label says the serving is 1/2 cup and doesn't state whether that is uncooked or cooked, then assume that it is 1/2 cup as it comes out of the package. Note that in Photochick's example of Barilla pasta, the package specifically states that the 1/2 cup serving is the cooked amount. Of course, if you are looking at labels for products sold outside the US, they may not comply with this guideline since they aren't required by law to do so. If you are really confused about the product label, there's often a phone number or email address where you can request more information.

If you are looking at a recipe, usually the recipe states the uncooked amount unless it specifically indicates otherwise. So, for example, if I had a recipe that called for "100 grams of broccoli," I would assume that the 100 grams is the uncooked amount of broccoli. I would only measure the broccoli after cooking it if the recipe specifically called for "100 grams of cooked broccoli." Another good clue here is whether the ingredient is pre-cooked before it gets used in the recipe. If the ingredient isn't pre-cooked, then the measurement has to be for the uncooked amount, because it wouldn't really be possible to cook it and then measure it. But if the ingredient is pre-cooked, then the measurement might call for the cooked amount. Of course, recipes aren't regulated by law, so this is just a general guideline and may not apply in all cases. With most vegetables, it probably doesn't matter much whether you weigh before or after cooking because there usually isn't that much difference in the cooked vs. uncooked amounts. But with meats and grains, there can be bigger difference and I usually find that most recipes are pretty clear about whether these ingredients should be pre-cooked.

WebRover
10-05-2008, 03:20 AM
Of course, recipes aren't regulated by law, so this is just a general guideline and may not apply in all cases.

Well this is confusing. When I read your post I see "recipes are regulated by law" and when I go to quote it I see "recipes aren't regulated by law".

Does anyone else read it that way or is it just me?

zeffryn
10-05-2008, 09:23 AM
Well this is confusing. When I read your post I see "recipes are regulated by law" and when I go to quote it I see "recipes aren't regulated by law".

Does anyone else read it that way or is it just me?

I got the same thing. Odd.

BlueToBlue
10-05-2008, 01:28 PM
Sorry, I had a typo in my regular post--the word "are" should been "aren't." I noticed it immediately and edited the post to correct it, but I guess there was some sort of glitch where the correction only showed up when you quoted me. Of course, recipes are NOT regulated by law. Anyone can write a recipe any way they want.

JulieJ08
12-24-2008, 10:19 AM
Sorry, I had a typo in my regular post--the word "are" should been "aren't." I noticed it immediately and edited the post to correct it, but I guess there was some sort of glitch where the correction only showed up when you quoted me.

I think there is some weird glitch with edits. Because sometimes when I quote a post, I see whole sentences that aren't displayed in the post!