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Everything posted by Pitter

  1. Yesterday, while getting my hair cut, I examined Simple Living, and found it to be one of the better food mags. After that I would say Food and Wine, and Cooks Illustrated. Simple Living is going after the Martha Stewart audience, and seems to do that quite well.
  2. If any of you are in the neighborhood, Charlie Mathews in Hunterdon County, Quakertown, has a really nice stand which is open 7/24. Everything is $1. Four zucchini, a quart of peaches, a quart of tomatoes, five bell peppers, five japanese eggplants, an overflowing quart of string beans, all for a buck each. Look for the sign directing you to Quaker Lane next to the Franklin Township School.
  3. Mrbigjas: I'm not an organic gardener specifically, or intentionally, but I never spray my veggies with anything. What is the product you are talking about, and what does it contain? Truth be told, I was just outside trying to repair the damage (every single cage and pole was blown over -- now I have a cat's cradle of rope spanning around my yard) and I see that, as usual, I already have too many tomatoes. Many have already rotted, and many of the blossoms look damaged, but despite all that I think I'll still get several hundred, which is probably enough for my family of one. Thanks for your concern and any info --
  4. My local farmers here in Central NJ say that all crops are at least two weeks earlier than any year in recent memory, due to the fair weather. For tomatoes, I grow heirlooms, and they should be ready in a week or two, while I usually don't get many until mid-August, as they are a late ripening crop -- 80-90 days from planting, unlike the earlier varieties that are 55-75 days. Here's a big caveat, however. After the rain of yesterday, I am now frantically worried that many of them will have blossom-end rot. My advice is to get whatever you can whenever you can, even if they are not yet at their prime. There is nothing on earth like a beautifully vine-ripened Brandywine tomato. And remember -- never refrigerate tomatoes, nor buy them from people who do!
  5. Also when in Ithaca, go to the Green Star food coop. You don't have to be a member to shop there, and you will find a dozen or more cheeses from the area. I bought a very good, raw goat's milk cheddar that was comparable to Chevre Noir from Tournevant in Quebec, except it was $7.50 per pound, not $22. Ah how I miss Ithaca.
  6. Have you ever tried the Cornell Chicken Marinade? It was invented decades ago by the Life Sciences Dept. at Cornell, and the aroma of this grilled chicken permeates every neighborhood in upstate NY during the summer. Jim's, in Candor, NY, is an entire business derived from this marinade, and the Stern's loved it when they reviewed it in Gourmet. It can also be roasted in the oven, though it will not taste smokey, so something is lost, but it will still be divine. This should be enough for about 3 cut up chickens: 1 egg 1 cup vegetable oil 2 cups cider vinegar 3 Tbsp salt (can use less) 1 Tbsp poultry seasoning 1 tsp ground black pepper Whisk egg, then whisk in the oil, then the remaining ingredients. Marinate chicken overnight if possible, but a couple of hours will do. Baste with the marinade while cooking.
  7. I hate to sound like a snob, but I was eatting Roquefort in my highchair, and got all pissyoffed when my mother tried to substitute Danish Blue or some other lesser blue. After importiing and selling more than 2,000 cheeses, I have to say that Roquefort is still my favrorite. There are certainly many others -- Fourme Sauternes, Stilton, Roaring Forties, but it is Roquefort all the way ----
  8. Egg salad; frozen peas. I'll eat anything, but not these.
  9. Peas. Frozen peas and carrots. Peas. I still can't eat any peas, 40 years later. And egg salad. Never, ever will I eat egg salad, not ever ever.
  10. The Hudson Valley -- Rhinebeck, Millbrook, Red Hook. These are charming, small towns, with nice B&Bs and very decent restaurants. Go in the autumn when the leaves are turning, and you will see unbelievable scenery. In October they have a sheep and wool festival in Rhinebeck, which is fun even if that is not your thing, and is at the peak of the leaf season.
  11. Pitter

    cashew butter

    Simply swirl roasted nuts in the food processor or blender. It takes a few minutes -- before it's done, it's not done. You'll know it when you see it. I've done cashews, almonds, peanuts and hazelnuts this way, without adding oils. If I were to add oil, I would probably use a nut oil such as walnut or macadamia, which are readily available.
  12. In my neighborhood, which is in Central NJ, there was a huge controversy over WalMart building a store. So instead, they simply moved into a vacant, former department store. No permits needed, and no public mention of this transaction before they actually opened their doors. This was super sly. They also installed a McDonalds as their cafe operator. So now in Franklin Township, Hunterdon County, we have a WalMart and a McD, and this is simply wrong. Recently they did the same thing just 5 miles down the road. How many WalMarts does our population need? My town has only 2,000 people, though I guess they draw from other communities. I refuse to go there, as they buy flowers from the largest water aquifier drainer in the country, located 1/4 mile from my house, on a "preserved farmland" that houses the fifth largest greenhouse in the country, all for containerized mums. Oops, don't get me started. Owen, I was up in Ithaca last week, and what has happened there is truly shocking. So, I guess, goes the way of the country, but I was aghast. I grew up in this town, and cannot believe this. And I think there is a new Walmart, but I may be wrong, since all of these stores, with their eye-noise, all look the same.
  13. In late spring, I put up two dozen pints of raspberry preserves from my garden patch. In late summer, early fall, I do as many pints in tomato ketchup, tomato chutney, (I also roast and freeze a ton of romas) pickled hot peppers, pickled cukes (some with ground mustard, which are my favorites) and horseradish. My friends all think this is very quaint, canning food. I think it is a major enjoyment in my life that gives me satisfaction for the whole year.
  14. Pitter

    Favorite condiment

    Lime pickle Preserved lemons Hoboken Eddie's Hot Sauce Pickled Ginger (homemade, without food coloring) Toasted Sesame Oil Horseradish Cilantro Chutney Tamarind Chutney Mustard of almost every variety Lemon or Lime Marmalade
  15. I pretty much follow Suzanne F.'s prep for cooking up the artichokes, except I cut them into halves rather than smaller. Then I pack them into a large jar, and simmer extra-virgin olive oil with garlic slices, lemon peel, rosemary sprigs and fresh thyme, pour over, and keep in the fridge. I try to make a year's supply, but they are usually gone within a month. I slice them into tossed salads, and eat straight up with antipasti and fresh ricotta. This is my favorite food. My mom grew up on an artichoke farm, and I like to think that my love for artichokes began pre-natally, as this is all she ate when she was pregnant for me. If you need to unload some, or many, do know you have a willing purchaser here who could also resell any I don't eat. Simply private email me.
  16. The Frug lost credibility with me when, after preaching, eh, frugality in the kitchen and insisting that one does not need a lot of fancy kitchen stuff, he pulls out a solid copper couscousier.
  17. My suggestions: Lingot de Quercy or Garriotin: from small farmers in France. Goat's milk, complex, divine. Chaorce, cow's milk, get it whenever you can. Roquefort, always the finest of all cheese, and if you can buy either Carles or Vieux Berger, so much the better, though Papillon is very good. Parmesan Reggiano: Red Cow, at $25 per pound, is the best. La Tur from Langa: a triple milk cheese (cow, goat, sheep) that is rind ripened but also fresh. This is complex but soft, therefore unusual, and surprisingly strong but still friendly to folks who think they don't like anything other than cow's milk. Fourme d'Ambert with Sauternes: My favorite in all the world. A complex blue washed in Sauternes, strong, sweet, savory, complex. Le Marecal: a hard Gruyere that has the distinction of being aged in bales of herbs, which are then brushed off. Has the complexity of herbal nuance combined with the wonderful flavor of Gruyere. Seal Bey: a very rich, triple cream, rind ripened cow's milk cheese fron Australia that is really fine. Homboldt Fog: from north of San Francisco (Marin County,) goat's milk cheese made interesting from animals eatting from sea salt infused vegetation. Morning and night milk divided by a layer of ash, as in Morbier.
  18. Pitter


    Parsnips are one of my favorite vegetables. Roast them with salt and pepper, olive oil, fresh thyme and rosemary, and maybe add carrots and potatoes to the mix. Unbelievably, heavenly divine. Also, cut thin slices on either a mandoline or with a knife, and deep fry as for potato chips. You'll never eat store bought potato chips again, and realize that Terra Chips are a total rip-off (again, add carrots and potatoes to the mix, and maybe beets or yams, since doing a deep fry is a major hassle. Better to have a month's supply on hand.)
  19. This forum is very amusing. Some people's dislikes seem so utterly incomprehensible to me, just as my dislikes have always raised people's eyebrows. I eat every and all real, unprocessed food including offal, stinky cheese, strong fish, the usual suspects, except I will never, ever get near: watermelon, cantalope, honeydew -- or any other melon white chocolate and most milk chocolate (but crave semi- and bittersweet) peas -- frozen or fresh, except for snow peas popcorn egg salad (but I love deviled eggs)
  20. Artichokes My mother grew up on an artichoke farm, and she ate several crates of them while pregrant for me, so I think I developed a love for these early in life.
  21. Arey, many people have a hard time crumbling Roquefort onto salads. Hey, the wholesale price is 9-14 dollars right now, so the retail price is twice that. May I recommend either Bleu D'Avergne - a really reasonably priced, DOP cheese from France, which should wholesale for about $5.50 per pound, and retail for about $10, or a Fourme D'Ambert, also from France as a DOP, in the same price range. These will not be your Danish blue cheeses (crap) or the expensive Roquefort, but something very good for very good salads.
  22. I second the Fourme au Sauternes as the most heavenly blue. The cheese originates in France, then is sent to an affineur in Belgium who washes it in Sauternes and ages it in his cave. This is hard to find, so I usually reach for the best Roquefort I can find -- Vieux Berger or Carles. I am also fond of Bleu de Gex, Cabrales and Valdeon.
  23. rgruby, I imagine that your lemons are fine, with all that salt and acidity. If you see no mold, I would not worry. You will not get botulism from the exposed parts -- botulism is anaerobic, growing in the absense of oxygen. For example, garlic cloves submerged in oil and held at room temperature would be a great danger.
  24. Pitter

    Roasting a Chicken

    I use an enameled, cast iron pan, and begin the bird on the stovetop, sauteeing all around with butter, just enough to get the skin started. Then I flip it breast side up, and roast at 375 degrees. I'll baste it every now and then with the butter that melts into the pan, and the chicken is usually done in about an hour. I should add that I have a convection oven, and if there was ever a reason for buying this upgrade with your next oven, roasted chicken is the one. Sometimes, instead of starting on the stovetop, I stuff little pieces of truffle butter under the skin, then begin roasting at 400 degrees for 10 minutes or so, after which I turn down the heat to 375, basting occasionally. Can't go wrong with this method, either.
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