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Mssmltzr

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Everything posted by Mssmltzr

  1. Mssmltzr

    Cheese Fondue

    Around Christmas time, for the past four years, my boyfriend and I have made it a tradition to make a cheese fondue at home. While the fondue always results in something that is quite good, we can never seem to get the consistency right. In the end we usually end up with a pretty soupy concoction and a huge lump of melted cheese at the bottom of our fondue pot. We just can’t get seem to get the liquid ingredients and the cheese to unite and form a wonderful, smooth, creamy mixture. Are we not keeping the fondue on a sufficiently high temperature? Or is it just a matter of not stirring the mixture long enough over a steady heat? Please advise…it has been four years and while our relationship has improved…our fondue has not.
  2. Mssmltzr

    Munich: Cheap

    I will be in Munich from July until late September. I need to be able to eat at the cheapest (yet edible) places I can find. Would any of you be able to offer me any suggestions? PS: I will be at the Goethe-Institute, to give you a better idea of my location.
  3. Mssmltzr

    Blenders - Non-Immersion

    I have heard nothing but good things about the Waring Pro series. I will be doing nothing more than making smoothies, milkshakes, and various crushed ice beverages. Although the Vita-mix would be an amazing blender to have, I think it is a bit much for my simple needs. Honestly, I can't see using the blender more than twice a month. However, it will be getting a lot of use at the end of this month (I will be getting my wisdom teeth removed)
  4. Mssmltzr

    Blenders - Non-Immersion

    I am interested in purchasing a blender. I am willing to put some money into it and I would like to purchase something that would last several years. I would like to know which brands you have enjoyed over the years and which brands/styles aren't worth the money. Thanks in advance for your input!
  5. Mssmltzr

    Applesauce

    My grandma favorite apple to use is Rome. She peels the apples first then cooks them. If she wants to add some color to the sauce, she just cooks the peels seperately in some water until the water starts to turn pink. Then she adds the water to the cooked apples. She isn't a huge fan of adding spices to it, but when she does she adds the cinnamon right before she is ready to eat it. Im not sure why she does this. I would assume that it would taste much better if you added the cinnamon to the apples while they were still hot. Thanks for the link GG! I did find it interesting
  6. Mssmltzr

    Applesauce

    Grandma and I just finished making some homemade applesauce made from NC grown apples. She has a really simple recipe which made me curious as to how others make their applesauce. Is there only a certain apple that you will use? Do you add spices to your applesauce? How much sugar do you add? I would be interested to see the different techniques. Cheers! Mary
  7. I know that a new french restaurant has opened in the triangle. There is a possibility that it is in Cary. I know this is a horribly vague question--but has anyone heard of this restaurant and could give me the name? I have done a few google searches without any luck. Thanks! Mary
  8. I think that's it! Thanks for your help!
  9. Mssmltzr

    Breakfast Casserole

    My boyfriend has expressed interest in cooking and I am doing my best to encourage it. He wants his first project to be a breakfast casserole. It needs to be very, very basic. Nothing that includes too many "fru fru" ingredients that may intimidate him. I really just need a recipe that works well for throwing stuff into a dish and sticking it in the oven. A good recipe to build upon--so he can eventually make it his own. Anyone have any tried-and-true recipes that they don't mind sharing? Thanks for the help!
  10. Mssmltzr

    Breakfast Casserole

    Just the suggestions I was looking for. Thanks everyone!
  11. Mssmltzr

    Candy/Confectionery Thermometers

    I am looking for a candy thermometer that is easy to read (it's for my grandma). Anyone have any suggestion? Alton Brown at one point listed his recommended thermometer but has since changed his website and I can no longer find it. So let me know what you would recommend!
  12. I actually work as a baker in the Old Salem bakery, which is featured on the MHA-Net website. I was actually surprised to see that some brick ovens require that you have a live fire while baking the bread/pizza, etc. At my bakery, we let the fire burn down to coals and ashes, rake the coals and ashes into a small pit in the oven, and then allow the oven to drop to the appropriate temperature. Therefore, the hot bricks bake the bread, not fire itself. Well...there's my two cents.
  13. -Homemade peach cobbler -Ben and Jerry's or Cold Stone ice cream (because I can't go to Cold Stone without getting a waffle bowl and adding at least three toppings) -Mac and Cheese. Oh how I love Mac and Cheese. Even better with a thick slice of ham. Ooooh. -Doritoes. I can easily eat an entire bag, especially when drinking -Hostess Cupcakes -Those new butterfinger crisp bars. Man, it's like a kit-kat but with peanut butter. That's what Im talking about. -A giant chocolate milkshake with a plate full of fries. One of my summer favorites. And something that was a pleasure before, but wasn't aware that it was such a guilty pleasure... Slushies. Apparently those bad boys carry about 800 calories to them. Dang.
  14. Mssmltzr

    NY Pastries

    It all started here with one question: http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=68685 Now I am in Manhattan. Here is my first entry (sorry about the pictures. They will come later). Today I stopped by both Payard and Hot and Crusty bakery. Payard, in all of its magnificence, will be saved for the later part of this entry. Let’s start with the very New York Hot and Crusty. To say on behalf of Hot and Crusty—the place was packed at 3 o’clock in the afternoon. That can’t be a bad sign, right? It looks like Hot and Crusty is a favorite place to get fresh bread with out having to buy it from a boring grocery store. Besides, the name Hot and Crusty is great. Someone needs to make a t-shirt out of that. I grabbed a loaf of whole wheat bread for $2.75, but was tempted to try the host of other things that this place sells. I saw everything from black and white cookies, elephant ears, carrot cake, and some classy looking chocolate mousse. Personally, I like that sort of variety in my bakery, just as long as it doesn’t affect the quality. Turns out my loaf of sturdy wheat bread isn’t all that…well, sturdy. The crust is nice and tough. Underneath the crust lies bread that is sort of soft and lacks in real character. Perhaps I could have found what I was looking for in their multi-grain. Don’t get me wrong, the bread it good. Just not all that impressive. I am very willing to stop by there again to try everything else that can be found under their counter. Now…for Payard *cue La Marseillaise* (pictures later) Payard, as you might expect, is tres, tres French elite. Oooooohh but it’s so pretty! Honestly, I was already won over by the predominantly French wait staff, the Toulouse Lautrec inspired furnishings, and the fact that I heard more French than English spoken in the middle of Manhattan. They could have served me poodle-poop with a French flag stuck in it. I still would have been impressed. The dished I ordered is called “Le Louvre” (mais oui!). *see picture later* And it came in such a great box (and yes, I do plan to keep the box. I don’t care how obsessive it is). (picture later) Le Louvre (silly French. Naming desserts after museums) was delightful. The first layer is a dark, rich ganache that just barely grabs onto the chocolate mousse underneath. It is amazing to me how the dessert maintains it shape given the heavy ganache on top. The core of the dessert consists of whole hazelnuts, the chocolate mousse, and tissue-paper thin wafers. Oh mon dieu! It was like a chocolate pillow! Now that was an impressive, $5. 25 dessert. I would, with out a doubt, go to Payard again. Next time I will bring a friend and spend some time checking out the bar. It was well worth my time and money. So what is the wait staff is a little snobby? I would too if I sold such freakin’ awesome desserts. Tomorrow, we are going to Austria at Café Sabarsky!
  15. Mssmltzr

    NY Pastries

    I did go to the Manhattan location. I think I remember seeing two, maybe three small tables in there that sit two people each. Honestly, I wouldn't want to eat on site, it is just too tiny. Oh but they have great stuff. Update: Tonight I am meeting the pastry chef that works at Lever House (http://www.leverhouse.com/index_flash.html). I may even make it to the kitchen to see her work! I will fill you in on the details.
  16. Mssmltzr

    NY Pastries

    My good friend Kate reminded me of my lack of devotion to the blog recently. So, by God, let's catch up! I have been to only two bakeries since our last visit. One of which was Two Little Red Hens (www.twolittleredhens.com). I loved it. This one is a winner for all the right reasons. No it's not "so-French-it-hurts." It is pretty bare bones. It sells the basics that we all love and can some times be hard to find (banana nut bread, ginger bread, carrot cake). But what it is really known for are the the cakes, tarts, and cheesecake. Oh lord was it hard to make a decision. But I finally decided on their cheesecake, which so many of you have recommended. It was worth every damn penny. I only wish I could have ordered more. In fact I still may go back for the key lime pie. I also made a visit to the Little Pie Company(www.littlepiecompany.com). Being silly as I am, I did not buy a little pie. I really don't know why---for goodness sake, I didn't buy a pie from a pie company! Regardless, I did buy a cupcake. But not just any cupcake---a German Chocolate Cake cupcake. Ooooooh yeah. That was good. They put about 1/2 inch of toping on that sucker, and got no complaints from me. It was big cupcake too, worth the $2.25 I paid for it. In Raleigh, I would have paid $5 for at Cafe Carolina. Kate reminded me that I must make it to Les Halles while I am here. I couldn't believe I had forgotten about it! Im not even sure if they would let me into the place. But maybe I could stop by to just take a picture of it. Maybe say hello to Anthony : )
  17. Mssmltzr

    NY Pastries

    Well, I did make it to William Greenberg Jr. I stayed long enough to realize that they sell the basics (brioche, croissants, brownies). Those basics I'm sure are great (although their brownies looked like something a 5 year old could make) I was in the mood for something I couldn't get anywhere else. Since I passed by Quotidien (www.lepainquotidien.com) on the way to Greenberg, I decided to give them a run for their money. Quotidien looks like a really neat place to eat lunch---everyone eats at a long, common table. The service was pretty friendly too. They weren't sugary sweet, but they didn't make me feel rushed to make a decision. Ah, by the way, I now know they are a chain. Doesn't really shock me. However, their pastry selection was a bit limited. They have several small fruit tarts, a chocolate mousse dessert similar to the Louvre, pain au chocolate, brioche, muffins, and the biggest chocolate chip cookie I have ever seen (about 7 inches in diameter). They also sell breads, but that wasn't what I was interested in. I ordered a pistachio tarte that had been kept cold a little too long. The filling was a syrupy with a slight flavor of lemon. And that was about all the flavor I could find in it. The crust, which was really quite thick, was also rock hard. Man, this pastry just didn't taste good. So what's on tap for tomorrow? I may try to get to Silver Moon tomorrow. That peach brioche sounds incredible. I'll let you guys know.
  18. Mssmltzr

    NY Pastries

    I don't either. Thanks for the verbal affirmation.
  19. Mssmltzr

    NY Pastries

    In reference to Pan's question: I am from Raleigh, North Carolina. I will be the first to admit that I prefer a more comfortable, laidback (but not fake and over enthusiastic) form of service--which I have found is more typical of the south than the north. However, I have visited places in New York that are less austere and just as professional in service as Sabarsky. They aren't running to the door to greet me, but they are still nice and ready to serve. This guy would barley even look at me. At first I thought it was just me, but I think this waiter just didn't waste his time serving a young woman that was only ordering dessert. And in the end, a business has to be ready to cater to all demographics. Eh, oh well. Thanks for asking though. Sullivan Street and Bouley's are on my list. They are a little farther away from me, so I am saving them for last. Thanks!
  20. Mssmltzr

    NY Pastries

    VivreManger: I can very easily see how your dissapointing experience at Payard came about. My Louvre had to travel about 10 blocks in 90 degree heat before I was able to even take a look at it. Needless to say, the box did not do a very good job of keeping my dessert in shape. You would think, given that they do sell such complicated desserts, that they would find a way to make them travel better. I am going to take a harder look at your suggestions and make my bakery itinerary for next week. I'll let you know how it goes. Mary
  21. Mssmltzr

    NY Pastries

    And here's my humble opinion on Cafe Sabarsky Today I made a visit to the well hidden Austrian cafe, Cafe Sabarsky. The atmosphere is great, I have to give them that. But the wait staff was a little cold. Maybe I should come to expect that by now, but their attitude definitely made me feel uncomfortable. They have a great dessert menu, with about 10 traditional Austrian desserts (including Apfelstrudel and Sachertorte). I decided to go for a chocolate marzipan cake with orange croifiture. By the way---the cheapest dessert on the menu is a $6 slice of marble cake. Bo-ring. Honestly, I don't think the cake I ordered was worth $7. Perhaps chocolate marzipan just isn't my thing to begin with. The orange flavoring was very discrete and gave this heavy chocolate dessert a light feel. However, I just wasn't all that crazy about this dessert and left pretty disappointed. In this case, I think I just made a poor menu choice. I am quite willing to visit the cafe again to determine where the problem lies. Tomorrow I plan to make a stop at William Greenberg Jr. I am ready for another "payard" moment : )
  22. Mssmltzr

    NY Pastries

    Yeah, I kind of figured that was the case---especially after finding another one two blocks down from the one I visited. Oh well, it was still worth a visit. That's what I get for straying from my egullet recommendations.
  23. Ooooh! Thanks for the recommendations! Keep them coming!
  24. Hey everybody, I will be staying in Manhattan for the next month on a work assignment. I would like to hit up as many bakeries/patisseries as possible while I am there. However, I don't want to waste my time or money on places that just aren't that remarkable. I’m living around 90th Street…so any place I can get to on foot or by subway. Thanks for the recommendations! I plan to make web journal with pictures of all the places I visit—so keep a look out! MSS
  25. Mssmltzr

    Food Words for Children

    My favorite is Sugar Muffin. I have also been known to use Sugar Cake---which is also a popular Moravian treat in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
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