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Everything posted by edsel

  1. Mine arrived last week (I had it on pre-order). I've only had time to thumb through it, but it looks to be quite useful.
  2. I don't like the onsen tamago (LTLT) eggs for the reasons you cite. What I'm looking for is a set (yet tender) white with a liquid yolk. I found a possible solution in the post Towards the perfect soft boiled egg on Khymos.org. The post itself is interesting, but the technique I was looking for is actually in the comments. Scroll down to the pair of comments by Olly Rouse of Souse Vide Solutions. He describes a method of starting the eggs at a high temperature to set the whites, followed by immersion in a moderate temperature to allow the heat to travel to the center of the egg. The white is completely set and the yolk remains liquid. This is the sort of result I'm aiming for: (This egg was at Restaurant Drouant. I have no idea how they prepared it. It was absolutely glorious.)
  3. I wound up buying the Premier grinder mentioned above. So far I've only had time to play with it a bit. I ground a masala for biryani following Niloufer Ichaporia King's method. Also made idli batter - the texture was amazing. I'm cooking dinner with friends on Christmas Eve, and the idea has been floated that we should do a proper mole. I'd also like to make tamales with freshly made masa. Sourcing the right kind of corn for that will be interesting...
  4. Another tweet from Chef Achatz: Three Michelin stars. Congrats to the Alinea team.
  5. The location of the original is really the "odd fit". It's a much nicer restaurant (inside) than one would expect in a strip mall.
  6. This would be an exciting development if the rumors prove to be true. I love the original, and hopefully the New York edition will bear a resemblance. This note on Eater says the menu will be scaled down. I just hope that the Northern Thai items will remain. Does anyone know how involved chef Saipin Chutima will be in the New York operation?
  7. Does anyone have any experience with the Premier Tilting Grinder? It has a slightly larger capacity than the Ultra Pride and the tilt feature sounds handy.
  8. VTR got some publicity courtesy of Michael Symon. "The Best Thing I Ever Drank" includes a segment shot at VTR last Spring. Symon does a great job describing the drink. The episode re-airs this afternoon at 2:00 Eastern Time on the Food Channel.
  9. I downloaded the zbar app, but decided to get a cheap barcode scanner instead. I bought a "de-clawed" CueCat off of eBay. Works like a charm. If they ever decide to do an iPhone app for Eat Your Books, the barcode-scanning library used in the zbar app is open-source and freely available. Could be cool to have an option to upload books to your library...
  10. Yes, please add me to the "Pretty Definite" list too.
  11. We usually schedule the Gathering to coincide with Kristin's visit. She's got the longest travel time to get here. I'm fine with either July or August.
  12. Nancy, everyone kept looking at me when they mentioned Cleveland for 2011! (I suggested that you or LuckyGirl might be more skilled at organizing this sort of thing). BTW, next year will be the 10th anniversary of eGullet.
  13. I'd like to do the coffee tasting. Options 1 & 2 sound most interesting to me. (Though I do love S.O. espresso as well...)
  14. Catching up here... Alex has the price range about right for Grange. I love Roast (and love the idea of supporting a downtown Detroit business), but Szechuan would be great too. Szechuan preferred. We have some great Hong Kong food here in Cleveland. I'd like to do the field trip if it doesn't conflict with Kerry's workshop (I suspect it would...). I would vote for Dearborn. We have some small Halal grocers here in Cleveland. Dearborn is a whole other story. To make things simple, count me as a "yes" for everything except the Friday field trip (assuming it conflicts with Kerry's workshop - if not I'll do that too! )
  15. A mix of confection and pastry stuff sounds great. I don't have a ThermoMix, but I'm interested in learning more about it.
  16. Interesting tweet from Grant Achatz this afternoon: Deciphering the Tweet-speak, that sounds like an insane number of dishes coming out of that kitchen tonight. NRA weekend, perhaps?
  17. I'd like to do both Kerry's ThermoMix workshop and Tino's bread workshop if they don't conflict. Grange sounds like a winner. Roast is also fun (I've been there once). They have a private room we might be able to reserve with enough advance planning. Since I'll be driving to AA I'll be able to bring various tools/gadgets if needed. Closer to the actual date we should coordinate who's bringing what so that we have everything covered.
  18. Kristin, I can give you a lift back to Cleveland on Sunday. Middleburg Heights isn't far out of my way.
  19. Wow, lots of activity since I last looked in on this thread! I'll block out that weekend in my calendar now. Here's the topic discussing the most recent Ann Arbor event: Member-organized Event - 2006 Heartland Gathering :wub: Since AA is within driving distance of home I'll be able to bring appliances, etc. (Sounds like Sam already has the Vita-Mix covered). We can work out what's needed as we get closer to event time. Really looking forward to it!
  20. Tom, I may have misunderstood what Sonny was saying about the pork dish. Perhaps he was talking about a different version. The one we had didn't taste like it had liver or intestine in it. If it did it was well disguised.
  21. It's been a while since I dined at Ty Fun in Tremont (mentioned earlier in the topic). I joined some friends there last night for a feast that was was absolutely delightful. A friend arranged with the proprietors, Sonny Tingpatana and Greg Binford, to give us a sampling of delicious Thai dishes. The actual menu was left entirely up to Sonny - whatever he thought appropriate. We started out with chicken wings which were very flavorful but not as spicy as I expected (more about that later). Sonny told us that this was his father's recipe. I guess Dad likes cilantro. This was a great start to the meal. Next up, a chopped pork dish served as a lettuce wrap. I think Sonny told us this contained pork liver and intestines. It didn't taste particularly organ-y, but it sure was good. (This brought up a discussion of things he's hesitant to serve on the regular menu. Apparently one of his favorite dishes has a Thai version of blood sausage. I told him I'd be glad to try it). This dish was fairly spicy and highly aromatic, with Kaffir lime providing the high notes. A stuffed bitter melon soup followed. Sonny told us that the bitter melon was blanched to tone down the bitterness. This dish had a palate-cooling effect. Then came a flurry of dishes served in quick succession: Duck and eggplant curry. This had two types of eggplant (Thai and Indian). The coconut-based sauce had a nice touch of Thai basil. Beef with broccoli, baby corn, and flat noodles. Rich flavors, not terribly spicy. Red Snapper, served whole. This was fried crisp and served with lots of vegetables. My only (minor) complaint would be that the fish cheeks were cooked to the point of being dried out. (My friend Nancy noticed that too, with a note of sadness ) The rest of the fish was moist and tasty. Again, I was surprised that the sauce was not especially hot. Crisp tofu with vegetables. Several of my friends remarked on this dish being quite delicious, despite their usual indifference to tofu. The tofu was pressed before frying, so it had a dense, meaty texture. The sauce was silky and lightly flavored. Again, not especially spicy. Ground chicken with green beans. The beans had just the right level of crunch. Nice! I've mentioned several times that some dishes were less spicy than I expected. All were nicely seasoned and very aromatic, but only the ground pork lettuce wrap dish really had a heat level that made me take notice. I don't mind a bit of heat, but I don't seek it for it's own sake. I'm much more interested in a balance of flavors, textures, and aromas - which this meal provided in spades. A couple of my dining companions prefer a higher level of heat, and at their request a dish of nam prik nam pla was provided. Sonny told us: don't ask for hot sauce, ask for prik nam pla, which is sliced bird's eye peppers with fish sauce. Delicious! (and HOT!) This was a most enjoyable meal. The unanimous verdict was that they should do special tasting menus on a regular basis. I know many of my friends (not just those of us who were there last night) would be delighted to try whatever Sonny decides to cook up. Photos link to a Flickr set if you want to see larger images.
  22. edsel

    Feast [Houston]

    I finally made it to Feast last week. I've been working in Houston and Feast was on my "short list" of places to try. I met up with a friend from Cleveland who happened to be in town. We both were delighted with Feast. We knew that this was our kind of place when our server announced the evening's appetizer special: Pig snouts! Served with capers and pickled vegetables. Delicious! We also tried the marrow bones with parsley salad (a là Fergus Henderson? - I believe the chef at Feast worked with him in the past). Gorgeously executed. The atmosphere at Feast is relaxed and friendly. The food was outstanding. I'll be back.
  23. I was driving through the area on Wednesday and decided to stop by Roast. I'm a big Michael Symon fan, and this was the only (current) restaurant of his that I hadn't experienced. I really lucked out, because they were introducing a revamped menu and the executive chef was in the house. I was not expecting Chef Symon to be there, so that was a nice surprise. Here are a couple of new apps on the menu: Beef Tartare with Uni Foam and Avocado. I think that's the description - the web site hasn't been updated with the new menu yet. The texture and seasoning of the beef were spot-on. Just a hint of chili (I think), and the meat was cut in a nice fine dice - lending the perfect degree of "tooth". The uni topping adds a subtle and refreshing hint of the ocean. The quality of the sea urchin is impeccable. I have to admit to being a bit nervous ordering this. When uni is fresh it's absolutely sublime. My experiences with uni in the U.S. have been mixed. This was on a par with what I've had in Japan. When you say "Michael Symon", the word "seafood" is probably not the first thing that comes to mind. But he's as serious about serving great seafood and vegetables as he is about red meat (his obvious signature). Speaking of seafood, another new menu item: The Lobster Roll This is a half-portion (comp disclosure - Chef Symon brought this out for me to sample after I'd already had the tartare and the "Roast Beast of the Day".) I was already pretty full, and intended to just taste a bit. I finished the whole thing. This is a classic Michael Symon dish: Take a familiar, somewhat humble dish (yes, lobster used to be humble), pay attention to the quality of the ingredients, and add some subtle "upscale" touches. The lobster meat was delicious. Nice big chunks of tender, flavorful lobster. Pretty much what you'd expect on the northeastern seaboard, but very welcome here in the "Heartland". It was dressed in a lovely mayonnaise. There's your "haut" upgrade. A great sauce, with a touch of herbs (tarragon?). Also, the bun was appropriately split from the top, and it was soft and slightly sweet. Again, echoing the classic "humble" dish. My main dish was the "Roast Beast of the Day", which on this occasion was spit-roasted baby lamb with salsa verde and cracklings. This was very reminiscent of the slow-cooked suckling pig they do at Symon's Cleveland restaurant Lolita. Funny how suckling pig and baby lamb seem so similar. Baby goat (kid) also has that quality. I'd like to see what they do with a more mature animal. Maybe it takes too long to spit-roast a big hunk of pork, beef, or ( ) mutton. I liked this dish, but when I return to Roast I'll try something else from the mains. Or just order a bunch of apps, all of which look awesome. Dessert was a "Beer and Pretzels" sundae that sure sounds like a Cory Barrett treatment. I didn't ask who does their desserts. I was already stuffed, especially with the half-portion of lobster roll. Somehow I managed to make room for dessert. Wish that Detroit were just a bit closer. Can't believe I just said that!
  24. That was precisely my worry - that it couldn't possibly live up to my expectations. I needn't have worried. We had a mishap at our table (surprisingly, it wasn't me ), and a gentleman at another table had a Black Truffle Encounter with his necktie. Despite the warnings from the waitstaff to not bite it in half with your mouth open. Speaking of warnings, did they mention that the bowl for HP/CP is wax and isn't intended to be eaten? I guess in the early days of serving that dish there were some misunderstandings... Thanks for the report, Holly. Glad you enjoyed your meal.
  25. Lobster-roe compound butter sounds awesome. Jean-louis palladin had a procedure for drying lobster roe to use as a garnish. I don't know whether this is a classical technique or something he came up with. You par-cook the roe wrapped in plastic wrap in simmering water for a few minutes until it turns red. Then chill, break it into small bits, and spread it on parchment. Into a 400 ℉ oven, toast for 15 minutes, break up clumps, toast another 15 minutes, then cool. Force the cooled roe through a fine sieve to make beautiful little "rubies" of roe. Nice. (Also agree about the tomalley not being deadly if you don't eat it often.)
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