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fiftydollars

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  1. For spices, herbs, and the like I am a huge fan of this place in the Mission. They sell a lot of the stuff in bulk sizes (usually 1 lb.), so you have to be careful not to overbuy (dry thyme, for example is $5.20 for 1#, which is a lot but at a good price, comparably). http://www.sfherb.com Store address: 250 14th St (between Mission & South Van Ness), San Francisco CA 94103 800-227-4530
  2. Steven Shaw

    I know... I am again late and some dollars short, but ever since I read Steven died, I have been thinking about all of the things that I learned from him and how many of these things I use every single day. I cannot believe he is gone and that I will never gain another amazing insight from him. I, as probably most here, never had the pleasure of meeting him in person, but over the years I had a few online interactions with him and I knew him well enough that he asked me not to call him Mr. Shaw. He was a great teacher. There is a whole host of topics where most of the important things I know about them are things I learned from Steven. These topics include steaks, eggs (!), braising (!!), cast iron, pizza... and the list goes on. I just can't think of one area of my food life that has not been touched by reading Steven's writing. I just can't imagine my life without this guy. I can't. I would have to go back to burned steaks, crusty cast iron, awful kitchen tools, and terrible restaurants... Worst of all; no relish.
  3. Les Halles - Anyone been recently

    I'm a big fan of the mushroom soup and lobster bisque recipes in the book. The latter I usually make with dungeness crab, but I still shove the critters shells and all into a blender where they make a sound that at once satisfies and disturbs.
  4. Restaurant outs LA Times critic

    The restaurant was having a bad night--they kept the critic waiting 45 minutes--so they panicked and exercised the nuclear option to head off a bad review.
  5. Cooking more than one poached egg at a time

    Eff the vortex method. Go with a lot of water... like a 20 plus quart stock pot's worth of water. Heavily salted and a little vinegared. Think TK's method for vegetables, plus a little vinegar. By the time the eggs hit the bottom they will have set into the right shape, perfect. And with that much water and thermal mass you can do a dozen as easily as one or three.
  6. McDonalds' "Plan to Win" Growth Strategy

    Dude, I totally agree. They can't seem to follow even their own crappy recipes. How about just doing that? How about just making their food with better fresher ingredients (or just fresh)? And then just having people give a crap when they put this isht together? Corporate can say what they want, but unless the franchisees actually make the food somewhat close to what it looks like in the adverts, people will and should assume it's the same old crap... wilted lettuce, horrible excuses for tomato, and should I even mention the meat (ammonia anyone? http://www.nytimes.c...agewanted=all). They can make frapuccinos and sweet tea all they want. But every time I walk into their store at Golden Gate and Van Ness, it turns my stomach and I have to walk out. I don't care that it's cheap and convenient. I don't care that I only have a dollar. I just see the quality of what they are serving to paying customers and I walk out.
  7. New Orleans 72hours

    Thanks, Todd. We are very much looking forward to visiting and this is the only time of year that I'll be able to get around to it for quite some time. And I do love oysters!
  8. Bottled Mexican hot sauces

    I love Buffalo and have since I was a kid in the DF. One of the main ingredients is carrot. Not sure where the chilies rank on the ingredient bill, but carrots are definitely something that makes it distinctive.
  9. New Orleans 72hours

    We are looking at going in late October for somewhere around 72 hours. We'll be arriving late Thursday evening (11pm) and leaving Monday afternoon(5pm). What should I know about visiting this time of year?
  10. Roasting tomatoes

    Summer has finally started to give me serious amounts of tomato. My current favorite roasting method involves cutting out the core, filling with oil marinated blue cheese and putting them on a hot grill until the skin blisters and the cheese melts. The centers of the tomato still taste garden fresh while the outside is nicely roasted with some caramelization and then there is that blue cheese...
  11. Items You Prefer Canned

    Pre-cubed blue cheese. I don't mean that I necessarily prefer canned blue cheese, but if I'm going to buy it in chunks I prefer it out of a can (or jar, as it were) packed in oil with juniper berries, garlic and whatnot.
  12. Things that are a total waste of money

    It's a little unfair to call it a "total waste of money." If I knew then what I know now, I wouldn't have bought the all clad I have. But I've gotten 10 years on some of the stuff I have and it's still in fine working order. However, I have loads of crap in my kitchen (and garage) that definitely falls into the category of total waste of money. For example: citrus juicer attachment for the kitchenaid
  13. Getting ready to roast an outrageous prime rib

    So I butter poached the rib as announced. The results were very good. Here are the ribs I started with. Golden Gate Meat Co. slices the meat from bone, ties it back together, then wraps it in caul fat (this accounts for the odd specks of fat that appear in photo). The recipe called for 8 lbs. of butter, but it actually took about 10 to cover the roast. The roast was a little to tall to cover it in a standard dutch oven, so I flipped it at some point. It took about 1.5 hours or so to get the roast up to 118-120, which is about when I pulled it out of the oven. After the poach, I seared the roast in a cast-iron pan using some of the clarified butter. Then, since I was running late and the mood among the guests was starting to turn ugly, I rushed through the final preparations and did not get any more photos. I am really, really sorry about this. My report is obviously incomplete without the money shot. As promised by Michael Mina the roast did not need to rest after searing. I was able to slice into the blood-red roast right away without leaving behind much fluid. My only note would be that the roast does not get much salt from the butter poach (if any), so it's important to season well before searing. One (maybe two) of the guests wanted it well-done, so I took some slices and ruined them to order by putting them back in the butter to poach until the desired over-done-ness was achieved.
  14. Getting ready to roast an outrageous prime rib

    I'm picking up a three-rib roast tomorrow for butter poaching. It's prime graded and aged 21 days, but other than that it's a plain ol' rib roast from the good folks at Golden Gate Meat Co. I'll try to report on my success (or lack thereof) as soon as I can. I'll be using the recipe Michael Mina wrote for the WaPo food section. Let's see if Big Mike's recipe can wow the crowd. Wish me some luck...
  15. Obscene Sandwich

    This is by far the dirtiest sandwich picture I have. I did not make the sandwich (I'm pretty sure it's easy to guess who did), but I did get the money shot.
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