I Came to Cook, Not Do Math!

Day 10 of the 31 Day Challenge

Day 10 of the 31 Day Challenge

It seems like you just can't get away from math.  They told us in algebra class that we would use math the rest of our lives and we all scoffed.  We just wanted to get through the class and move on.  Little did I know how right they were! In nursing we used math all the time.  Especially because I have been a nurse forever when work was like a constant word problem.  We had to prepare our own antibiotics (e.g. you have to give 100 mg, there are 250 mg in a bottle that you dilute with 10 ml of fluid, how much solution do you draw up….), calculate how fast to drip iv fluid (you need to give 100 ml an hour, the tubing is 15 drops per ml, how many drops per minute)….you get the idea.  Some of that went away with changes in medicine  - only pharmacy mixes drugs, and pumps manage drip rates. Woo hoo for you new nurses!

Now here I am in culinary school and last week we had a math test! Ha!  Working with food  you have to scale up or down a recipe depending how many servings you need. This is true  even for the home cook. You may have a recipe that makes four servings but you want to take it to a potluck where 20 people will be eating.  How much to make?  Do you really want to measure 10 teaspoons of an ingredient or would it be better to measure in tablespoon proportions?   If you are managing a kitchen you have to figure out how much food to order to prepare for your meal service or event. Same for you if you're having a party. Knowing conversions is essential.  How many teaspoons in a tablespoon, how many tablespoons in a cup, how many cups in a gallon and the like.  We even had pecks and bushels. 

And no, not that bushel and a peck!  I actually thought that a bushel was just a term for fruit in the same way that there is a pack of wolves, a flock of geese, a school of fish. Actually, it is a real measurement with four pecks in a bushel, and two gallons (or eight quarts) in a peck. 

Easy conversion help!

Easy conversion help!

My mom told me she learned conversions in home ec in school.  Somehow I missed learning them  and always sort of guess or have to look it up. Our instructor gave us this picture to help us learn it all.  You have to memorize 3 teaspoons in a tablespoon and 16 tablespoons in a cup.  From there this is great….Just remember the big G has 4Qs, each Q has 2 Ps, and each P has 2 Cs.  So easy…no more guessing!

Cups in a Pint
Pints in a Quart
Quarts in a Gallon

Just so you know…I got everything right but those darn pecks and bushels!

A peck?  Probably not.  How about a basket? :) 

A peck?  Probably not.  How about a basket? :) 

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