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Posts posted by nessa

  1. The first and only time I've used fennel in cooking, I made a chicken stock-mushroom-fennel-leek soup. I'm hooked. More fennel next time.

    I recall back when I was a wee thing in the 70's, Mom would take us on walks around San Fransisco, and we would pick the top parts off of fennel everywhere!

    Love the stuff!

  2. Are you kidding? Ma is tickled pink she won't have to cook. She has never had a problem handing over the apron, and never once complained about the food. Gotta love that!!

    On jello..... Ma used to make a lime jello-cabbage-green olive dish......

    I thought everyone had it for holidays. I liked it as a kid.

  3. But, as a kid, my mom would always make lasagna with only mozarella, noodles and meat sauce. It's passable. Just be prepared for a cheese fest. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing.

    As long as you use good, fresh ingredients, you can't go wrong.

    I shudder when I think of my sweet, well-meaning mother's "lasagne".

    There were no noodles. She cut strips of zuccini, then layered that with tomato sauce and undrained cottage cheese. She might have topped it with some mozz.

    Sometimes ground meat was involved in some way. Bless her heart.

    Vile, watery, bland nastiness. I didn't know lasagne had noodles until I was married and made it for the first time.

  4. I don't really like fries anymore. Its depressing. I have these great memories of fries. In Germany, I'd have them with mayo but thats mighty rich, cant take too much of that. I stopped ordering fries since the burger/whatever that came with it was more than enough food. The times I have had fries of late they have just been dissapointing. I just gotta have them piping hot and crisp. But I'd rather spend the calories elsewhere usually.

    I really must try them with malt vinegar though. Salt and vinegar is my thing!

    Then again maybe I shouldn't.....

  5. Turkey tortilla soup. Turkey enchiladas, Turkey and dumplings, Turkey gumbo, curried turkey salad, Turkey-chipotle sandwich spread......

    I LOVE the days after!!!! Sometimes I'll smoke two turkeys so that I can have that much more fun!

  6. There is a recipe for Derby Pie in my River Roads Recipes cook book.

    To paraphrase:

    1 unbaked 9 inch pie shell

    6 oz chocolate chips

    4 tbs butter

    1 cup sugar

    1/2 cup flour

    1 cup chopped pecans.

    Take the butter and melt it, then add the sugar and flour to the butter. Mix well. Beat eggs into this mixture one at a time. Stir in the pecans. Layer the chips on the bottom of the pie crust, then pour the egg mixture over it.

    Bake at 350 for 1 hour and let cool before you serve.

    They got the recipe from the Baton Rouge Stat-Times circa 1976

  7. Confession is good for the soul, I hear. I *FREAKIN ADORE* tater tots. To me they are little bites of hashbrown goodness. I much prefer fried, but my tummy doesn't. I like them with a little salt and pepper. Jalepeno ketchup, if I'm feeling froggy. Whats *really* primo is tater tots with jalepenos and onions. Kinda like a potato hush puppy.

  8. We don't have any conflicts in the kitchen.

    The kitchen is my domain, and he never ever cooks. Ok, once in 7 years. And I like it like that since he does tend towards the control freak side of things. Our kitchen would be a battleground if he pretended to know what to do in one. I know his culinary preferences so thats what I serve him. If I don't like it that way, I make mine differently. No big deal! He likes pot roast and potatoes, I don't so I'll make him what he likes and then have a stirfry or Indian. He doesn't interefere with my food choices. The down side is that I'm a VERY messy cook. VERY. I've been called messy Nessy most my life.

    So he doesnt help clean up either, but will be rather voiciferous if the kitchen isnt clean. A small price to pay for getting to be the kitchen tyrant! There are very few people that I play well with in the kitchen. :unsure:

  9. Anyone have any turkey gravy suggestions??

    Oh - sorry to say that we will still be having a "traditional" T-Day dinner. 

    Old habits die hard.

    Smoked turkey gravy is divine. Its my new tradition.

    For me, it doesn't HAVE to be turkey, I'd like to experiment with partridge or some exotic bird. I *love* smoked turkey. And the drippings that come from it are pure gold. I put a new twist on my grandma's delicious gravy and we really couldn't be happier. I do miss the stuffin'. I make it as dressing but its not *quite* the same. But I can live with that because the turkey is so muuch moister and more flavorful.

    Christmas is when I tend to experiment more. Traditionally in our home we had turkey for both. Now It depends on my mood. Ham, lamb, pork roast, prime rib..... I can't decide this year. This is the first year that the family is coming to my place so perhaps I'll take a poll.

  10. Sometimes they would take a needle and poke it into the egg once it was boiled, to help the solution penetrate further.

    Does it mean they use a needle to inject the sauce into the egg yolk?

    No, they simply took a straight sewing pin and stuck it in so that it allowed a teeny bit of the solution to get in via capillary action

  11. Wow!! such improvements!

    We *just* finished our new kitchen floor. Since we are also on a budget, we did it ourselves. Our house was built in '54 and had a whole lotta flooring in the kitchen.

    One day a couple months ago, the SO got a wild hare ( or is it hair?) up his {censored} and started ripping the carpet up. The fools we bought the house from did a rotten job of carpeting, and half the rooms didn't match. Who knew? We had gorgeous hard wood floors underneath. Well, not prezactly gorgeous, but they will be after refinishing. Thats set for later this year. Meanwhile, the kitchen had to be dealt with. We had layers. Layers upon layers. Subfloor, then Asbestos from the 50's, a couple of layers of vinyl, then a layer of plywood. They remodeled about that time so set the cabinets on top of the plywood. After the plywood came another couple of layers of linoleum. The last one didn't even have adhesive.........

    Needless to say it took about a month to get that floor out. Had to saw that plywood out, then fine tune with a dremmel.... an absolute nightmare.

    We had to work in 4 day spurts, since thats the SO's schedule. So, a month later we found tile we liked, ordered it. Waited. Waited. They said there was a glitch and we could pick it up in December..... :shock: Canceled that and found a new store. Much better, and they had great prices!! we got our tile for 99 cents a square foot. Its a neat tile, it has slightly irregular sides so the groutline is kinda rustic. It compliments the tile backsplash.

    So, we had to lay the hardy backer board, then the tile.....

    I'll spare the gory details, but I'd think long and hard before doing it ourself again.

    Its a long, nasty, tedious process. I think the total bill came to under $400 for about 150 square feet of flooring.

    I think it was worth it, however. The SO won't let me make any more renovations to the kitchen. We had another AC vent put in, and put in a new vent hood in. I'd like new counters, but I guess its not practical, since we don't plan on living in the house more than a couple more years.

    Here's the corner of the kitchen where it meets the living room. You can see what a state the hardwood floors are in, they painted right before they put the carpet down.


    As you can see, we still have not got the baseboard up yet.


    We ended up choosing to lay the tile in a diamond pattern. SO thinks its green, I say its gray......


    Anyway, keep up the good work, Dave! Your kitchen is gonna kick butt!!!

    I'm envious that you get to play with it!

  12. I seasoned the beans with salt and fresh ground pepper. Thats all. I have a lot left over, so I threw in some of the left over beef fat and will have that for breakfast, lunch or dinner. I think thats my favorite part. I am in love with yellow mung beans. I STILL have enough brisket fat for another couple batches. :blink::blink: . I would probably add even more black pepper to the beans next time.

    Spaghetti, isnt it sundown *yet* ?

  13. Okie dokeie. Pretty darn good for my first try, if I do say so myself.

    Here's the construction. I definitly need a new method for this.

    This is the banana leaf, cut in squarish rectangley shapes, a foundation of cooked sweet rice, topped with smoked brisket fat.


    Then I put mostly cooked yellow mung beans on top.


    Followed by a topping of more rice


    Then I kinda squished and squooshed everything together, and rolled them up. I double wrapped them all, then tied string around them. I managed to eek out about 16 of them.

    I covered the bottom of the pan with extra leaves, then stacked the packets in, covered with water and a plate to weight them down. I boiled them for the magical 2.5 hours.

    Here they are just off the boil


    And unwrapped




    And garnished with some hot pepper sauce.


    I'm stuffed, I had two.

    They need more beans in them, but over all they are very tasty, the texture I was looking for, and I'm pretty darn pleased with myself. :rolleyes:

    Thank you all for the inspiration.

    Oh. I forgot to put onions in them.


  14. Ok. So its been months, but I was thinking of making the joong (or whatever they might be called) today. Apparently I'm a little unclear on the concept still. Do I cook the ingredients first a little before wrapping? How do you get the rice to surround the other stuff and stay there?

    I'm using bananna leaves, because thats all I could find. I'm going to try and wrap them pillow shaped, any ideas how to do that?

    Any advice is much appreciated.

    I'm going to have sticky rice, yellow mung beans, onions and smoked beef fat.

  15. My coworkers from Shanghai gave me the following recipe:

    Take a dozen eggs and hard boil them

    Crack the shell with the back of a spoon to make pretty patterns. Don't crack too hard. Put soy sauce, salt, black tea and star anise in pot with water to cover the eggs. Simmer about 8 hours. Refrigerate in the brine. All amounts are to your personal taste.

    Sometimes they would take a needle and poke it into the egg once it was boiled, to help the solution penetrate further.

    My whites are usually flavored all the way through, and sometimes the yolks as well.

    When I can figure out the image gullet again, I'll post a picture.

    I love them and make them at least once a month. My preference is for a strong anise flavor.

    Edited to add:


  16. Boy am I late to get in on this blog!!!

    Let me just say that its terrific and you are doing a fantabulous job!

    Chipotles of any sort are one of my favorite things. One thing that I like to pair chipotles in adobo with, is sweet potatoes. Puree some of the chiles and the sauce together, then throw in with the sweet potatoes and mash. Lots of butter is good as well. :raz: . Also, dried chipotles, ground then heated in some butter go well with the sweet potatoes. Keep up the awesome work!!

  17. Its everywhere, its everywhere!! Our lab meeting gets "catered".

    We got box lunches from Schlotzsky's, this time. I had ordered a *small* sandwich. What I got was some supersized deal. It was huge!!! I had to immediatly wrap half in the deli sheet and put it in the fridge. It came with cookie and chips. Half a sandwich, half a cookie and a whole bag of chips later :blush:

    I was stuffed. I can't fathom eating that whole thing anymore. 10 years ago, I'da scarfed it all down. Gotta love gettin' older! Its hard to get over the mindset of clearing your plate, or "getting your money's worth". Especially when its free... go FIGURE! But regardless, it really is hard to have all that food and not just keep picking at it.

    One way I justify the "getting my money's worth" is taking home the stuff that will reheat, and giving myself a stern talking to for the rest. "Is it really getting your money worth if you have to go buy a size larger wardrobe? Hmmmmmmmm??. "

    Usually works for me, usually..... :hmmm:

    I know it aint gonna work for me tonight. I'm trying out a new lebanese place in Ft. Worth. New to me, anyway. I can't WAIT!!!!.

  18. I always keep canned beans on hand. Sometimes goya, sometimes Ranch Style. Sometimes whatever the heck is on sale.

    Ranch Style has a lovely black bean and jalepeno number that is perfect to slap on a tortilla with a little cheese and salsa. Dinner? Done!

    Garbanzo beans are another staple.

    I like canned spinach with vinigar/pepper sauce. I always have canned tomatoes, tomato sauce and tomato paste as well. Thats about it, I don't have a lot of room for canned goods in my pantry. I'm making chili tonight, so I've got a buncha canned goods sitting on my counter. :hmmm: I've been *meaning* to make it since Sunday. Weird how life gets in the way sometimes, eh?

  19. I *usually* have the will power to have them bring a doggy bag right at the beginning, if the portion is too big. Which, is oh, 95% of the time.

    Now, eating Big Spicy Noodles or Green Curry with Eggplants at Thai Nipa, all bets are off, I'm going till I lick the plate clean. I have yet to have the willpower to stop. But I don't bother to order fries with a burger anymore, there just isnt enough room. Most the time, I have to split the burger in half and save it for later. Its a real problem, its so easy to just eat until there's no food left on the plate. Thats why I try to have it removed from the plate before I start.

    More and more, I find myself ordering an appetizer as an entree, or an appetizer and splitting an entree. Its really getting out of hand!

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