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Everything posted by challah-baker

  1. Bonnie over Jen? That was a wierd decision. What was Gordon thinking?
  2. For NY style pizza, my favorite is Anna Maria's in Hillsborough. I just go in to listen to the boss's NY accent. It isn't fancy or gourmet or anything like that. Just the pizza-by-the-slice-you-fold-up-and walk-around with. Of course, you can only really walk around the parking lot, but...
  3. The Red Rock website now says Heather is "Senior Chef" at the resort's Italian restaurant, working under the leadership of Executive Room chef Renato DePirro. Fans can watch her work in the restaurant's open kitchen. I don't remember the term "senior chef". Wasn't it something else? http://www.stationcasinos.com/templates/ho...orp_ia.aspx?p=7
  4. We have really been enjoying Thai Cafe in Durham. It's not on 9th St, but unless you are stuck walking which I guess you aren't since Bullocks to Locopops is a healthy hike, the food is great! The potstickers are the best I have ever eaten. Just avoid the Thai Basket appetizers. I know the N&O guy loved them, but we just think they are wierd. challah-baker
  5. I have to ask whether or not others on this forum think that anyone would really be willing to work under an executive chef (which is the prize, right?) who won their job on a TV show? Generations of classically trained French chefs would roll around in their graves. It seems typical of the view of how one achieves "success" that is all too typical these days. You don't need hard work, years of experience, etc. Just a quick jolt from a reality show. Having said that, I think the show is great "entertainment", despite the repeated material. It shows people at their nastiest, and I don't just mean GR. It's not really about food or what it is really like to work in a restaurant. It's about "human nature". I apologize if this has been said before, but it is American Idol meets the Food Channel, with GR playing Simon what's his name.
  6. Not to change the topic too much, but has anyone eaten at Pao Lim lately? I went a few times after it first opened and liked it. But, I went back yesterday and was really shocked. The food was awful to the point of being inedible. The hot and sour soup tasted like something LaChoy would put in a can. The Tofu in Hot Bean sauce, to quote Sam Sifton, came in a sauce that could only be described as yucky. The tofu had a bizarre texture and tasted slightly sour. Even the spareribs were disappointing. Any ideas on what gives? They had so much promise. Did they change chefs?
  7. On speaking with several people lately, Mr. BryanZ, both those who work in restaurants and those who eat there, the same question has come up. How do you fund these excusions to all these restarurants? I remember from my college days being confined to either dorm food or ramen. Not to pry, or anything, but enquiring readers want to know...
  8. I do a lot of volunteer work with Amnesty International, and I just found out our annual meeting next year is in Portland! I may come by with several hundred friend for coffee and cake! I have been reading this forum from the first posting, but never thought I would get out that far. I can't wait! It is only a year away...
  9. I was also disappointed in Four Square. I can't remember what we ordered now, but nothing stood out. And quite a few things we had missed the mark. If we paid half the price I might have been more tolerant, but when you are paying top dollar you expect more. Service was also not what you would expect for the price. They "lost" the flowers I had sent to be put on our table. The host on duty said he didn't know anything about it, even though I had called earlier in the day to make sure they arrived. Luckily a waiter intervened and found them. The host didn't even care to look, nor did he apologize. I have nothing but wonderful things to say about Starlu!!!! Really great food. Great service. A nice selection of both beers and wine. OK the location is the pits (it is the same bldg as our mortgage broker !?!?) but maybe the rent was right. Once your inside the atmosphere is great!
  10. I have made the Cook's Illustrated recipe, but omitted the corn syrup and substituted 3/4 cup of homemade ginger syrup (chop up 16 oz. of fresh ginger, add to 2 1/2 cups water and 2 1/2 cups sugar. Boil until it reaches 225 degrees) and 1/4 cup Lyle's golden syrup. I have also tried the same substitution in other pecan pie recipies. The ginger and the pecan and the Lyle's go perfectly together. Kind of a ginger-butterscotch-caramel-nut effect....
  11. Beats me, my five year old likes Alton Brown and Tony Bourdain... Seriously though, we love "Kids Cooking" from the Klutz publishers. Ours came with its own set of color coded measuring spoons. Lots of fun recipes....my son loves it!
  12. Well, we are about to make the big trek north from down here in North Carolina to visit my mom who lives in Fort Lee. (Yes, in THAT building. Don't worry, we are bringing our own water) I was thinking it might be nice to walk to dinner, something we can't do down here where BBQ has a different meaning and you can't really walk anywhere except for out to the garage. Anyway, me and Missus Challah-baker have been craving the Korean kind of BBQ and were wondering if there were any truly fine luminiscent examples of this in Fort Lee (we have seen several signs on previous trips) or if we should just hop on the Red and Tan and go into the big city. (While we can't walk around here, no meal would get me to drive up there. No offense. Well, maybe if someone was willing to pay for a meal at Per Se...) Thoughts? (p.s. oh yes, and China 46 is one of my favorite restaurants on the planet, although Cecil took offense once when I asked for Red Bean Paste balls for dessert. He said he didn't serve peasant food. He did serve us a mighty fine substitute, which I believe contained Lotus Seed. It sure beats any Chinese food around here...)
  13. This just in..... Hot News From Matzah Rising Farm: 1. Fresh Turkeys! We will now be able to have the turkeys quick chilled, which will allow them to remain fresh, not frozen, until Thanksgiving. They will be soft to the touch, with no need to defrost, and the great taste of a fresh free-range bird. Turkeys of all types and sizes are still available. Send in your order today to assure availability. 2. Remember about our annual open house next Sunday, Oct. 17th from 12-5. Gobble with the toms, sample pies beneath the falling leaves, get your hook shot ready for the new season, meander down to the creek, and marvel at the allure of Sammy, our new goat buck. Check out the website later this week for new pictures, directions to the open house, and the updated fresh bird news you heard here first! http://www.snowcamp.org/matzah Gerry Cohn/Jessica LaMontagne Matzah Rising Farm 1105 W. Greensboro-Chapel Hill Rd. Snow Camp, NC 27349 336-376-8765 corncrib@netpath.net http://www.snowcamp.org/matzah
  14. I think it is best right out of the jar, but just last night I added it to a tarte tatin (Birenbaums recipe from Pie and Pastry Bible) I substitute 4 tbs of it for 4 tbs of the sugar and it was divine! Also add 1tbs of vanilla. I echo the suggestions for subsituting it for corn syrup in pecan pie, but also in any caramel recipe where corn syrup is called for. I used it in classic creme caramels. butter crunch toffee and popcorn balls. It really takes them to another level. It costs more, sure, but since you already have it... I also tried it instead of simple syrup in a mint julep. Yummmmm! challah-baker
  15. Another excellent source is Matzah Rising Farms, and not just because they are named after the other greatest Jewish bread. Go to: http://www.snowcamp.org/matzah/ They are in Snow Camp, NC Their website says: We raise turkey, goats, ducks, and geese, blueberries, and a variety of vegetables. Our farming methods utilize the natural productivity of our soils and climate, improving the health of our land, minimizing the need for outside inputs, and supporting the efforts of local farm-related businesses. Part of the farm is enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program, planted to a permanent mix of native grasses, grains, and legumes to enhance wildlife habitat and water quality in the Jordan Lake watershed. Next Sunday is their Fall Open House. You can go and check out their farm and order your turkey in person! I have been to the farm before. It's very cool. peace, challah-baker
  16. We have had good experiences with our 4 year-old recently at both Magnolia Grill and Lantern. he is a super good eater, the little gulletter that he is, but the staff was super friendly and attentive. There is no kidz menu per se at either, but they were both flexible with substitutions and stuff like that. There ia always Elmos, but frankly I find their food to be a bit mediocre. They are super kid friendly though. Also Dips is very kid friendly! And so is her daughter's place, Bon's, in Carrboro but Bon tends to give unsolicited parenting advice to a sometimes annoying degree...
  17. Here it is: http://www.nytimes.com/2004/09/08/dining/08REST.html
  18. If you make it to Stars, let us know what you think! Thanks for the heads up about the Oyster Fest. Post the dates when you know them. Also, although not food related, if you are looking for a place to stay Sunset Beach is one island south and is much nicer and less over developed. They still have the natural dunes on most of the beaches! Challah-baker
  19. Note to David R., I guess that's why we hold Julia Child in a special light. Her taste buds and opinions were never for sale. I have read the Rosengarten Report in the past, but will read it with more scepticism in the future. How do we know what we are reading is his honest opinion, or a paid advert? Challah-baker
  20. I really love Cafe Phoenix (definitely go for the Risotto cakes), and Elijah's and Pilot House are both good (I can never remember which is which) but this past week we were down on the beach south of Wilmington and went to Stars Waterfront Cafe on Ocean Isle Beach, about 30 minutes drive from Wilmington. It definitely was one of the best meal's I have eaten in North Carolina hands down. Ocean Isle is kind of a mini-Myrtle Beach and that is not intended as a compliment. Stars is on the main drag onto the island and it is sandwhiched between two real estate agents. From the front you would probably never go in. But both the indoor and outdoor eating areas are really beautiful and the food is mostly fantastic (see below for minuses). And it is kid friendly. The first night we went there it was just me and my wife, but then we went back the next night with my five year old. It is a real interesting mix of a restaurant aspiring for 4 star food with a real informal atmosphere, but formal service. Really. Silverware was replaced between courses. The staff is well trained, professional and knowledgeable (even discussing in detail the correct temperature to serve wine and the history of what temperature it has been served) and people eating in shorts and flip-flops. Sit outside and watch the sun set over the marsh!! The first night I had a Tamarind Glazed Grilled Shrimp for my app and "Macaroni and Cheese" for the main course. It was definitely not out of a blue box. It was two whole lobster tails on top of orzo in what is described on the menu as a roasted garlic mascarpone cream, but it tasted really much lighter than that sounds. My wife had a "Wild Mushroom Cigar" which was basically a crepe filled with wild mushrooms and Cabarnet Poached Bosc Pear that was served with Stilton Mouse and toast spread with house made fig jam. The second night I had a Japanese style Carpaccio which was definetly the best carpaccion I have ever eaten. It cam served with little cubes of sake/wasabi jello, wasabi peas, and seaweed salad. Sometimes cute isn't tasty and many things on the menu have that too cute ring to them, but all the ones we tried worked really nicely. I mean, wasabi jello? But it was really a nice surprise and I would gladly have ordered a bowl for dessert. The five-spice duck breast I had the second night was just OK. A bit too close to medium-well for my tastes. It was the only slip up in the service. They didn't ask, and I assumed it would come rare. Both of our faults really. My wife ordered the Macaroni and cheese since she liked mine so much the day before. The kids menu is real basic, but that is a kids menu. They gave us enough chicken fingers (which were house made and not bad as chicken fingers go) and fries to feed several kids. They had a very interesting looking tasting menu, but it was way more food than we could eat the first night and kids and tasting menus are not a good idea when we went the next day. The desserts were just ok. A bit too sweet for my tastes. The chocolate cake glazed with port on top of creme brulee sounded good, and the brulee was tasty but the cake itself tasted a bit like stale Sarah Lee and the port glaze didn't help it much. We had a bittersweet ganache that was better. The Root Beer float with house made sassafras ice cream was very nice though. Surprisingly the coffee was undrinkable. Both nights and both the decaf and regular. Truly vile diner style. And no espresso or anything like that. I was really amazed by that. The reviews on the wall say it has won various awards, and I think they are well deserved with the above caveats. If you order duck specify and bring coffee in a thermos. Worth a drive from Wilmington or Myrtle Beach.
  21. And a woman of MANY talents. Yesterday I was watching the animated film "We're Back" a cute and silly dinosaur movie. One of the funniest characters was a woman paleontologist (sp?) and I kept thinking "I know that voice..." Sure enough it was Julia Child. And you thought she could just cook!
  22. Well, I do all the cooking around our house. As well as all the dishwashing. My office is the house so that's part of the reason, but also I like to cook and my wife doesn't and if she did the dishes she'd never have time mid-week to just hang out and play with our son. I must say though I was a little surprised to find this thread on a site that has so many professional chefs and other folks in the food industry. My first reaction was "Oh, how 60's..." but even nowadays I am surprised by how much hasn't changed. It's funny though how much kids are a product of their environment. Our son who has been in the kitchen with me almost since the day he was born is defintely a future E-gulleteer. I recently switched to leaner meats after having a cholestrol test number that would make the Dow Jones average jealous. We used to eat mostly Rib Eye and cuts like that. Yesterday I grilled up some NY Strips. No K-Mart specials, nice free range ones. He complained! He said "These aren't my usual steaks. They are yucky. They are more chewy, don't have as much taste and are harder." He is 4 1/2!!! Pretty scary to be that young and correctly identifying the difference...
  23. I vote for: Cooks Illustrated (despite Kimball's bombast) Saveur (despite the occasional travelog feel) Gastronomica (well, it's an acquired taste. Kind of like Julia Child meets Jacques Derrida) Also, the "Best of Food Writing..." book series by Holly Hughes is interesting to read because you can get an idea of what different journals have to offer. It comes out every year. I always look forward to the new one. challah-baker
  24. We need an update! America is waiting to know!
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