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Everything posted by maher

  1. in this case yes it is. zaatar the blend uses zaatar leaves in dried form with the spices as you mention. however the zaatar you use in the fatayer is the leaves alone, preferably in their fresh form, but also useable dried. in most cookbooks thyme is used as a substitute but zaatar leaves are not the same thyme used in western cooking, it is really (in my opinion) best approximated with a mix of thyme, oregano and marjoram since its taste is sort of a mix of the three.
  2. they are called fatayer bi sabanekh. (literally.. spinach parcels) if you google the word fatayer you will find a ton of different recipes. they are traditionally made with spinach but people add a wide variety of ingredients. the ones with cheese tend to have zaatar leaves in them, which is a herb that is halfway between thyme, oregano and marjoram. you can find it in dried form at most middle eastern shops.
  3. at the risk of confusing the issue further i would say that you should add only charcoal that has been lit and has begun to turn grey when there is food already cooking. Putting unlit briquettes could give off an unpleasant taste to the food. As charcoal comes up to heat there is a lot of incomplete combustion which releases carbon monoxide and other gasses and odors depending on what the charcoal was treated with. this is less of a problem with lump charcoal but much more of a problem with briquettes. This is also why you should always wait till the coals are well lit before starting to cook at the start of grilling.
  4. I am planning a large party and i want to do a ncaa bracket type tasteoff for as many different spirits that people have not heard of/tasted as i can. I need help with your nominations for your favorite small producer/artisianal spirits that can win the trophy. I was thinking of doing regionals either by spirit US/Americas/Europe/Asia or by type of spirit Vodkas/Gins/Tequilas/brown spirits with an all comers clash in the final four. I also need a source for different vodkas/gins/tequilas that has some of the smaller newer producers, and will give a good price for a larger order. I will be buying a total 10-15 mixed cases. i need a good source either online or in NY that can deliver. Any ideas/thoughts/concepts/nominations are more than welcome. i should probably put in a different posting in the food boards but any ideas on good finger food would be fantastic. thanks maher
  5. the fibers are not individual strands along the muscles. in many cases they are connected together, so if you cut a very thin slice along the grain, you will end up with something like a sheet of muscle fiber, not individual strands.
  6. The grain of the meat runs in two directions, not one. by cutting steaks from the sirloin you cut across the grain in both these dimensions whereas by cutting along the grain you cut along only one. Then by slicing the steak you cut along one of the dimensions again. if you were to do it the other way you would have to cut very thin slices to get the same effect. this is not the way most people eat steaks, making this the best way to cut them for the greatest majority of uses. If you were to make either a tenderloin roast or a standing rib roast and slice into very thin slices you would get the effect you are suggesting, but speaking for myself at least, having a little of the fibers contributes to the mouthfeel of a good steak, and the rendered fat in the marbling takes care of whatever my knife doesnt. If i wanted the fibers cut into the shortest possible lengths i grill hamburgers.
  7. i add my thanks for a most entertaining week.. the only downside is i now have to go look for something else to read with my morning coffee.. im sure several days of probing the depths of the japan forum will be on tap.
  8. maher

    Sam Adams Utopia

    thanks for the info i will try both maher
  9. maher

    Sam Adams Utopia

    Im trying to find Sam Adams Utopias beer/liquor but im not getting anywhere with it. I bought a couple of bottles two years ago and really liked it, but it seems that there is no more supply for some reason. does anyone know where i can find it? either online or in NY would work for me thanks
  10. horse meat, mainly available in switzerland. dry cured like jamon in Spain it is well worth a try
  11. maher

    Fresh Kielbasa

    no discussion of kielbasa is complete without one of my alltime favorite eG blogs: the Col. Klink Kielbasa Diary. It starts here: http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=12443&hl= and continues here: http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=16087&hl=
  12. maher

    Son Of TGP/SME

    Thanks Bdevidal... its great to get such wealth of detail in your post. i cant wait for you to settle on a master recipe that you are happy with. i am already earmarking next week for some corned beef experimentation.
  13. ill admit to a bone-anza of another kind, which is what came to mind when i read the thread header. i am a total addict to stock bones. i will wait patiently till beef or lamb bones have finished giving up their stock so that i can munch on the little trimmings of meat, various gelatinous bits, and marrow that the bones retain after the stock making. it is a culinary pleasure of the most basic kind, and one where i will wish for the lousiest butcher, who has left the largest amount of meat on the bones for me to eat. there is typically more meat left on lamb bones, which is enough to make me throw some in at every stock making opportunity. Cracking the bones to extract the bits of marrow is a bone-anza of the most primal kind.
  14. maher

    Spanish mackerel

    cure it with a little citrus juice and sliced onions, maybe a bit of star anise or peppers to provide a kick. slice it thin if you like the cooked texture, or keep it whole and slice after curing for a couple of hours if you like the more raw mouthfeel. it makes an amazing ceviche
  15. maher

    Broiling Fish

    i always steam when preparing a fish filet for diet purposes.. it is much more moist than broiling without fat, and and water thats packed with the frozen filet will fall off the fish into the steaming water keeping the flavor fresh. Ive found that i get a great flavor kick from almost any far eastern seasoning... any preprepared indian or thai curry paste, plack bean paste, ... almost anything. i use just a bit, and thin it with rice wine vinegar. either use it to marinate the filet in for thirty mins before steaming/broiling or baste the fish as it cooks you can also use the basic ginger/garlic/rice wine vinegar with a couple crops of sesame oil. its my favorite diet food, though not the most exciting. if you get a fairly thick filet you can steam it straight from the freezer if you need to without much of a loss of texture or flavor.
  16. bread some chicken tenderloin or smallish strips of breast and throw them in a toaster bag.. you have to experiment to see what size your toaster will cook in the time the breading gets crisp, but they work out really well. i think someone discussed this in more detail in the old toast and serve bag thread
  17. you can use any technique that works in a regular oven. the only issue is that wood ovens need to be monitored closely so they do not get too hot, as this can burn the skin before the pig gets done. this is why most of the preparations involving wood ovens that i know of (especially in Spain) use either very small piglets (3-4kg) or use two step cooking. In the two step method, you would cook the pig using low heat (in wood or regular oven) till it is almost done, then take it out to rest for about thirty mins. you would then put it in a very hot wood oven just to crisp the skin and finish the cooking (about thirty mins). This results in some of the best crackling i have ever had. I would recommend brining the pig for 24 hours in advance, and then using any spice mix/rub that you like in any recipe for regular roasting, for BBQing, or anything else. good luck.
  18. my italian faves: Tartufo.. much more delicious than truffles. also, affumicato... far superior to smoked. In arabic, my all time favorite.. Mashawi ... a catch all term like barbeque... basically any hunk of animal flesh in close proximity to an open fire.
  19. Ah Leung Thank you for a most inspiring Blog. it sets new standards for Egullet and has been the first thing Ive done each morning. I will look forward to your ongoing contributions in the China forum.
  20. The lettering on these Coke cans is actually Arabic. The cursive script going up the side of the can is the Coca Cola logo in Arabic, and the text on the back of the other can, while quite small, looks like the ingredient list and health warnings about Diet Coke in Arabic as well.
  21. If the egyptian saffron is old, it probably doesnt even matter that it is marigold petals. old saffron is essentially tasteless in my view. it will give rice a nice color, but thats it.
  22. I was just reading through a report in the London Times about the new Michelin three star ratings for France, full article here: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_...icle1421194.ece the interesting part of it, though, was a comment that illustrates exactly the point about European Haute Cuisine shunning sugar: "... But the purists still disliked the hint of sugar in her fish, Le Monde said. "
  23. there are two varieties, one is the white one, and one is quite a bit darker, though still more of a beige or a light brown. it is generally perceived that the darker ones have a more intense flavor, so you probably had those Foodman. my recipe goes with the charcoal grilling, then tossed into a green zaatar salad with spring onions, EVOO and lemon juice, with a little salt. ... absolute heaven.
  24. LindsayAnn Its been some time since ive lived in Chicago, but i dont think you'll have any trouble finding the dried shrimp in Chinatown. A trip down there was always one of my foodie favorite destinations in the city.
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