Dear Barbara: My doctor has told me to try to stay away from fermented foods. We use a lot of Worcestershire in this house in almost everything we cook. Does it contain anything that is fermented?
— Gayle from Galt
Dear Gayle: It sounds like you are already suspicious, and with good reason. Worcestershire sauce has fermented anchovies in it and the sauce is aged for about two years. You might want to ask your doctor before using it on everything. The sauce kicks the flavor up, so you may need to use a few more herbs or salt to bring out the flavor of the dish.
Dear Barbara: I’m a vegetarian and it is hard to find something in a restaurant that I can have. Do you know of any vegetarian restaurants around Lodi? I’m getting tired of salad?
— Alicia from Lodi
Dear Alicia: I have not heard of one in Lodi, but I have noticed that many more restaurants have vegetarian dishes on their menu. If you see something that has a meat sauce, you can ask your server if they have a sauce that does not contain meat that would work equally well. Perhaps the server could suggest something. Bon appetit!
Dear Barbara: I was in a restaurant that served us salmon. On top of the salmon were thin potato slices overlapping to look like fish scales. I tried it at home and they just slid right off. I want to try it again. Do you have any suggestions.
— Arlene from Lodi
Dear Arlene: This is just a guess, but I think it would be worth trying.
Slice the potatoes very thin, try using a mandolin or “V” slicer. Pat the fish and the potato slices so there is no extra moisture on that side of the fish. Place the potato “scales” on top and refrigerate for 15 or 20 minutes. Make your skillet very hot with just a little olive oil to keep it from sticking. Carefully and quickly place your salmon potato side down until it is golden brown and crispy. Then carefully turn it so the flesh side is down. When the fish is done, serve it immediately, and hopefully the potato “scales” will stay on!
Happy Easter to all!
Barbara Spitzer is a Lodi home cook who also develops recipes for specific consumer products. Do you have a cooking question? Send it to Barbara Spitzer at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your first name and city.