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Posts posted by catdaddy

  1. 16 hours ago, liuzhou said:

    I'm going to throw this into the mix, but I have no idea what they are. They were labelled as 根子鱼 (gēn zǐ yú) which means 'stickleback' or 'minnow', which these clearly aren't. They are about 8 inches / 20 cm long. Maybe mutant minnows!




    Mackerel of some sort?


  2. On 11/30/2021 at 9:16 PM, liuzhou said:



    I don’t see 青口螺 (qīng kǒu luó, literally ‘green mouth snail’), Mytilus edulis, Mussels in supermarkets very often but when I do I always buy some. More often, I eat them in restaurants or from night market seafood stalls.


    They tend not to be common in tropical waters, so most here come from the cooler north-eastern waters off China. They are extensively farmed. 乳山 (rǔ shān), a city in Shandong province is famous in China for its mussels. I can buy their mussels online, but have to buy a minimum of 2.5 kg (approx 5½ lbs) at a time and delivery costs more than the molluscs – not so convenient for someone living alone.


    The locals cook them strangely to my western mind. I prefer the simple European styles - moules marinière or moules-frites. Also, although it is highly atypical for me, but I do reluctantly admit to liking the Cantonese* favourite, mussels in soup with fermented black beans. However, I prefer my own take on the combination, cooking them broth-less with the black beans.



    Mussels with Fermented Black Beans


    The locals narly always shuck them and grill them covered in minced garlic. Nothing wrong with that, but I don't want it every time.



    Grilled Mussels with Garlic


    *My least favourite type of regional Chinese cuisine.



    Most appetizing photos yet!

    • Thanks 1
  3. On 11/25/2021 at 8:03 PM, liuzhou said:



    Another mystery today. These are labelled as 黄尾鱼 (huáng wěi yú) which translates as “Yellowtail fish’. Given that hundreds of different species are labelled as ‘yellowtails’, this is less than unhelpful.


    They are about 15 – 18 cm / 6 - 7 inches long and I would classify them as an oily species, similar in taste to mackerel, but not so strong. I like them a lot and would love to finally nail down an identification.


    They are usually gutted and fried whole, but would work well on a grill, too I suppose.

    Could these be Decapterus macarellus, or related?

  4. 3 hours ago, Bernie said:

    Doesn't the parchment stop the top of the contents being exposed to the hot air of the oven without a lid or the bit of hot air at the top of the pot if it has a lid on it?

    That way you don't get any drying of the top layer from exposure to the hotter air rather than the actual cooler cooking liquid.

    I could be wrong though. ( which is not an unusual occurrence )


    I think you're on to something here....  Although the liquid in a braise never gets over 212 degrees the air directly above the liquid certainly does so if you are actually braising (as opposed to poaching) whatever portion of the short rib is above the water is cooking at a higher temp than the submerged part. I was always told to submerge short ribs when cooking them so they don't dry out. Never really considered why just another thing on the list.

    • Like 1
  5. Back before Thanksgiving when turkeys were a lost leader for the grocery store I bought a 13 lber. Now I'm thawing it and want to brine and smoke/bbq. The label says "it contains up to 8% of a solution of turkey broth and salt" and a couple other things. I'm wondering if I even need to brine. Should I dry brine for 2 or 3 days and just let the meat come to balance or let well enough alone?

  6. 16 hours ago, Toliver said:

    Some say that after 4 hours, the meat has absorbed all of the smoke it's going to absorb. Which means the rest of the cooking time your smoker is just being used as an oven to finish the cooking of the meat.

    So why not, after 4 hours, remove the brisket, wrap it in foil/plastic wrap, put it in a pan (to catch any drippings) and finish cooking it in your kitchen oven? Low and slow and you should be good to go without wasting pellets. Just a thought...

    This. Wrapping a partially smoke-cooked brisket in paper then finishing the cooking is what Aaron Franklin does. Personally I've smoked pork butts on my small PID-less Traeger for 5 hours or so then wrapped in foil and finished in the oven at 275. Excellent results.

    • Like 1
  7. Thanks. Here's the recipe I've been using for 20 years. I love pecans and am always looking for new ways to use them.



    2c sugar

    1T light corn syrup

    1c buttermilk

    1tsp baking soda

    3T butter

    2c toasted pecan halves

    1tsp vanilla


    Combine sugar, syrup, buttermilk, and soda in large heavy pan. Bring to boil over medium heat. Cook to 220 degrees.


    Add butter and nuts. Cook to 232-234 degrees. Remove from heat and let stand 2-3 min. Add vanilla and beat with wooden spoon till thick and creamy.


    Drop by tablespoon onto waxed paper. 


    Work fast cause it will seize up pretty quickly after it gets thick and creamy. Sometimes I just make half a recipe so I know they'll be pretty when cool.

    • Like 2
  8. 21 hours ago, Kim Shook said:

    Made cinnamon pecans a couple of days ago:



    Yesterday was great day for candy making – very dry and cool.  Peanut brittle:





    Sponge candy:


    I ended up with one perfect batch and a slightly sticky batch.  I ran a little short of dark corn syrup and used a little Golden Syrup and am wondering if that is the culprit. 


    I also made these silly little things that everyone loves:


    Pretzels, Rolos, and pecan halves.


    Glad I didn’t wait until today to make the candy as it is pouring.  Please pray for me – we are off to the post office to mail our packages.  At LUNCHTIME 😳.

    Those pecans look so good. Do you have a recipe you'd like to share? I'd be happy to trade for my Buttermilk Praline recipe.

    • Like 1
    • Thanks 1
  9. My neighbor, who is vegan, is fighting through treatment for throat cancer. Apparently she has retained some appetite. I'm wondering if anyone has any suggestions for a dish or dishes I could prepare for her? Swallowing is difficult but not impossible so small/soft pieces are ideal.


    So far I've made congee with pureed dried mushroom.

    • Like 1
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  10. I'll chime in here to say I love to read about your daily travels and travails in the camper and in the kitchen. I cooked professionally for many years and still get lots of joy doing it at home. Mrs catdaddy and I are planning to go on the road in the near future so posts about rv life are doubley interesting. I guess the most valuable posts are the ones discussing mistakes or unfortunate turns of fate and how you deal with them.


    So please carry on there's lots of folks interested. And thanks.

    • Thanks 1
  11. On 10/22/2020 at 2:16 PM, Duvel said:

    I am not sure about a turkey breast roll, but turkey leg roll (first SV, then deep fried) is a truly remarkable item: easy to prep, forgiving in the making and very satisfying to eat. 

    This sounds delicious. Care to share your recipe?

  12. 19 hours ago, Tri2Cook said:

    Soul food is cooking from the soul. Taking what you got and making it good so you can feed those you love and make them happy and yes, "those you love" most certainly can include yourself. But I'm pretty certain from the follow-up posts that you're looking for stereotypical African American cooking, especially that with roots in the south. The thing is, what's been said above is absolutely true. That cooking isn't much different than what anybody else in the south will have as their culinary roots. There are introductions to the cuisine that came with the people brought over into slavery but they caught on pretty much across the board in the south, not just among the slaves. There are also things that probably stayed predominantly among the poor, but that too without particular racial distinction. What you see in a Chicago "soul food restaurant", you will quite often find on the hot food line in almost every convenience store in the south and definitely on the dinner tables of a large portion of the people... with no racial lines. 

    I would add to the above that various editions of the JOY OF COOKING include some great recipes (and even some technique description) for specific dishes.

  13. Grace Young has written wonderful cookbooks describing how to stir fry at home with typical equipment. In general she advises using a flat bottom high carbon steel wok. After that it's about limiting the amount of food that goes in a one time and technique. Stirring at the right time and leaving to sear at the right time. Also learning velveting is handy.

  14. 14 hours ago, blue_dolphin said:


    This 2019 paper, Water-indexed benefits and impacts of California almonds, doesn't specifically address the 1 gal/almond claim, rather they use a measure called "water footprint" but they use the same metric across a large range of California crops to compare water usage vs nutritional value vs commercial value and also compared the water usage of almonds grown in different areas of the state.  As to how those water usage values were derived, they cite a 2011 paper, The green, blue and grey water footprint of crops and derived crop products, which goes into much detail on the mathematical formulas used to calculate the water footprint values they present in the voluminous tables in the paper.  Kinda interesting. 

    Obviously, I don't have enough to do 🙄

    Please let me know if I'm interpreting wrong.....Although almonds, and other tree nuts, use a lot of water there are few crops as nutritiously dense and economically significant. So you get lots of bang for your buck with almonds.

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