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  2. Dinner 2017 (Part 6)

    First time I've cooked for a week. I enjoy my travels (usually) but it is good to be back home. Squid, clams and shrimp cooked in a fish stock (made from a fish head I bought) with wine, shallots, garlic, chilli pepper, coriander leaf and Chinese chives. Served with rice.
  3. How kind! (she says in sarcastica font)
  4. Today
  5. I feel like it wants to mash or break up something.
  6. 1) What is your favourite restaurant (apart from your own): Absolutely fell in love with Nur in Tallin Estonia. Don't know if they're still there but the passion was as strong as any restaurant I've been. 2) What is your most important ingredient in the kitchen, and why? Yes, salt and acid. Those can make or break any dish. Beyond the basics I would say my flours. I now have over a dozen locally grown, freshly milled flours and each is crucial to the recipe I source it for. 3) What tool is most important in your kitchen, and why? Depending on the hour either my offset or my chef knife 4) Which restaurant, anywhere, is your dream destination to dine? Andrew Pern's Star Inn the City in York. His cookbook is still my favorite of the hundreds in my collection and I'd love to enjoy his food and hospitality. 5) What trend do you see becoming popular in restaurants in the next year? I think the balancing against the locavore movement is going to gain traction. I'm seeing more and more of the top chefs respond to that just as they've responded to molecular gastronomy - "We've done that. We've learned from that. It's a tool in our toolkit. But now I want to cook the best food I can regardless of where its from." 6) What trend would you most like to see go away? (Not a new trend by any means) I want to see an end to superfluous quotes on menus. I want an end to instructions on how to eat food. And I want all of the chef-orgasm descriptors to go away - let the food speak for itself. Examples (in order): Broccoli "steak" - It's not steak damnit! It's a broccoli floret cook on a grill! (Make me want to scream every time) "Please enjoy your kale leaves by using our shears to snip the leaves from the stalk and swipe them in the various sauces." ...this is real...don't get me started. "This is our 6-month baked tomato sauce." Um...no it isn't. If you wasted 6 months of utilities baking your tomatoes then you're a complete idiot. (And no, it was not a solar oven. I asked.)
  7. 1) What is your favourite restaurant (apart from your own) I've been lucky enough to eat in starred restaurants, but if I'm being honest, my favourite, the place I was happiest in my mind and mouth, is a tiny hole-in-the-wall Sichuan place operated by lovely couple near my home in the Chinese countryside. He cooks; she does front-of-hole. When they get busy, which happens more than you might expect for a place in the middle of nowhere, they employ students from the local colleges to help out, and they are lovely too. 2) What is your most important ingredient in the kitchen, and why? My mood. Because you can't cook well, even for yourself, without love. 3) What tool is most important in your kitchen, and why? My wok(s). Because there is almost nothing you can't cook in a wok and lots you can only cook in a wok. 4) Which restaurant, anywhere, is your dream destination to dine? A tiny father and son restaurant on a lonely Thai island where I spent a honeymoon. The island was empty apart from me and the Mrs and the restaurant staff of two. We ordered crab and the son disappeared and came back dripping wet with a beautiful specimen he had just dived for. Father cooked it to perfection. Sadly, wife is no longer with us, but I dream to go back. 5) What trend do you see becoming popular in restaurants in the next year? Where? In the west, more regional Asian food. There is a plethora of unknown dishes, still. Here in China, unfortunately, more ersatz western dishes cooked by people who have only ever seen pictures of the real thing and then imagined the recipe. 6) What trend would you most like to see go away? The increasing misuse of words and phrase on menus which only demonstrate the writer's ignorance of their native tongue. "Iteration" does not mean "variation" or even "version". 'Flavor profile' nearly almost just means 'flavor'. Grrrrr! Just tell me what I'm going to eat. I'm not a moron.
  8. 1) Doesn't exist anymore. -When I was a kid, eating out at a fancy place often meant a French restaurant. Maybe it was overdone for a while, but, now, in some parts of the US anyway, it seems impossible to find any sort of real French restaurant. (ironic because so many people are just slapping the word bistro onto all types of places that aren't really bistros) Anyway, I miss the golden days of haute cuisine. As a pastry chef, I should add that my favorite place to buy candy is Despina Leos' Candy Kitchen in Pennsylvania. Mrs. Leos and the Candy Kitchen store was a huge influence on me as a teenager and my eventual decision to go to culinary school and get a pastry degree. 2) Salt, after that, acids: lemon, vinegar, wine. I like food to taste alive and acid really brightens dishes. 3) My handcrafted, end-grain cutting board. It provides the foundation for so many other tools, and winds up being the main stage for most cooking processes. 4) Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons 5) Spices and dishes from African countries like Ghana and Nigeria. 6) Putting a "twist on the classics." Most of the people doing this don't have a clue about classic cuisine from any region on Earth. (except perhaps mid-century modern American pre-packaged foods) It's time to stand up and demand proficiency and genuine credibility instead of accepting half-baked, amateurish execution of cuisine, or worse, poorly conceived 'fusion'.
  9. Modernist Bread: Sablée Brioche

    Before. I'll go and check it fairly soon.
  10. Some wine to accompany it! Any wine! I have a single bottle but I am hoarding it for Christmas eve or Christmas day! If you have not yet tried the Modernist lean French bread you don’t know what you’re missing.
  11. My office had its Christmas Party today, and part of its organisational tradition is a Christmas decoration competition. I participated by constructing an entirely edible fireplace outside my office; everything edible, gingerbread fireplace bricks (detailed into further bricks with a flathead screwdriver of course), edible pulled sugar (isomalt) flames in the fireplace, edible photo frame, edible cookie ornaments, edible snow flakes, edible chocolate baubles and glitter. Was a hit. Am tired.
  12. It can't be considered a condiment, but do you have a favorite producer? I do speak French pretty well in practice and can write in French. Thanks for the link, which I'll have a look at.
  13. Here's one for you. All I will divulge at present is that there arte no moveable parts and although it can be used as a whisk that is not its primary purpose.
  14. Pickled herring is quite definitely something that "took" with me when I moved up north! Great stuff! Lutefisk...well, not so much. I have my limits.
  15. 1) The one I'm eating at next. 2) Salt. Should be obvious why. 3) Are you calling me a tool? 4) Shoraian, in Kyoto. 5) Prices going up. 6) Servers saying "Enjoy!"
  16. The Air Fryer topic

    I used Yukon Gold medium sized potatoes. Peeled then quartered and put on a rack in the IP which had 1cup of water added to the main pot. Steamed on high pressure for 6minutes with 10minutes natural release. Next the quite soft potatoes were tossed in about 1.5 teaspoons of rosemary infused oil with a couple of grinding of salt and cooked in the air fryer for 15-20 min at 392f tossing every five minutes. Russets work well too. I think parsnips would be great done in this fashion. Ditto for carrots and fennel..really any ‘roast vegetables’.
  17. Hello Here in my town, our newspaper has a weekly column whereby local chefs are asked the same questions week in, week out. For a bit of fun, I thought I'd bring it across to us all and ask you to answer! Here are the questions: 1) What is your favourite restaurant (apart from your own) 2) What is your most important ingredient in the kitchen, and why? 3) What tool is most important in your kitchen, and why? 4) Which restaurant, anywhere, is your dream destination to dine? 5) What trend do you see becoming popular in restaurants in the next year? 6) What trend would you most like to see go away? It's often a fun read in our paper, so it's hopefully going to be fun to see your responses.
  18. Sprouted Grains in Bread

    Here goes nothing... I took half of them and pressure-caramelized them. I also pressure-caramelized an equivalent amount of unsprouted grains. The current plan is then to make three loaves of the Modernist Bread "Farmer's Bread" with these three inclusions (it's a basic rye-flavored sourdough).
  19. A man of excellent taste - I love pickled herring!
  20. US Foods is one of the local distributors so I was hoping they'd sell it at their "Chef'Store", but no dice.
  21. Electric Flour Mills

    But that's a different animal.
  22. Electric Flour Mills

    I have ground vanilla beans, chopped, in a poppyseed grinder - the hand-cranked type that look like a minature meat grinder. A wet grinder, with the stone wheels - will grind them into a fine paste. Like the Ultra Pride grinder
  23. I know a couple of chefs in the "greater L.A. area" who have one and could use another but they only offered me $100. to "take it off my hands."
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