society donor
  • Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

About andiesenji

  • Birthday 03/23/1939

Contact Methods

  • Website URL

Profile Information

  • Location
    Southern California

Recent Profile Visitors

2,362 profile views
  1. Anyone making a pumpkin keg?

    I know a guy up at Mammoth who makes pumpkin ale and puts it into giant pumpkins with taps for parties he caters. He has been doing this for several years - he make a "plain" pumpkin ale and a "spiced" pumpkin ale. He buys the pumpkins from a grower in Bishop who "trains" the pumpkins to grow tall rather that squatty by confining them in 55 gallon drums that have been cut in half and are held together with bands or straps while the pumpkins are growing. Apparently there are a lot of people up in that area who use the pumpkins for kegs. Ben grew up in New England, (Maine and New Hampshire) and told me that pumpkin ale was a "thing" in New England with old timers and he grew up hearing stories about how it was made during prohibition and tucked away in barns, in pumpkins.
  2. Rice Pudding

    If you are using brown rice, you should soak it in plain water for at least an hour then drain it well and rinse it thoroughly. Mix half the sugar with 3/4 of the milk before adding it to the rice and cook it on the plain WHITE rice setting. Beat the rest of the sugar and the milk with the eggs add a little of the hot rice to this mix to temper it and then add it back into the rice cooker and stir well. Now restart the rice cooker - still set on white rice and set your timer for 30 minutes. Check it at 30 minutes - some brown rice (Lundberg) cooks quicker than others. If still too chewy let it go another 15 minutes. Cooking for too long in a rice cooker, on the stove or in the oven will cause the milk to "break" - unless it has an ingredient to offset that factor (sugar) - some people mix Karo syrup with the milk or even sweetened condensed milk which will absolutely keep it from breaking. (a trick used in some restaurants). When I was catering I made rice pudding with red colusari rice, which produces a lovely pink result. It was tricky to work with and I did a lot of trial and error (many errors) before I found the formula.
  3. Yes. They made them in two depths so they could be stacked. I have both somewhere in my junk, although one is missing the handle - I dropped it and it landed on the end of the handle which cracked. Before I got my electric steamer I used it with a "pot grabber" to lift it out. They were made that way so you could steam different items in the two different pans. It was recommended to put meat or fish in the bottom and vegetables or things like potstickers in the top.
  4. Don't forget to take the beater paddles out at the end of the final knead cycle.
  5. Molasses

    There are a lot of You Tube videos showing how sorghum molasses is made. Unlike most farms in Kentucky - my grandpa had two silos and the crushed canes were spread on a drying floor and allowed to dry for several days and then chopped and fed into the silo, along with corn stalks, for silage for winter feed. Nothing was wasted.
  6. Molasses

    The "new sorghum" fresh from the reducing pans has a higher acid content of about 4.0 ph. During storage the acidity modifies slightly and after several months will read about 5.0 to 5.5. On my grandpa's farm, the sorghum was stored in wooden kegs that had been "scorched" with charcoal (contained in a wire cage) on the inside. They were stored like wine barrels on racks. The molasses was later drained into gallon cans and sealed. Most was sold to small grocery stores in the region. There was usually a keg in the cellar with a tap for household use. Cook kept the supply for immediate use in a big enamel coffee pot that always had a cloth draped over it. My cousins and I got to feed the fires under the reducing pans. It took several days - the cane was cut and immediately hauled to the crusher because it had to be really fresh. The sap was filtered through heavy muslin cloths that were switched out and boiled in fresh water in a big old cast iron cauldron every couple of hours the funnel that fed into the dispensing pot where the kegs were filled had a stack of screens and perforated metal filters that were also cleaned in boiling water constantly. Crystals would form in the corners of the final reducing pan and the "sugar man" would scrape the stuff out and give it to us as a treat. My cousin Clark burned his arm on the edge of a pan trying to reach in and pick some out. He did not try that again.
  7. After ruining part of a very expensive dish of lobster chowder many, many years ago, by doing something similar, I learned to grind my pepper into a small dish and add it to the dish with a small spoon - or by the "pinch" which gives me much more control. I was able to skim off much of the pepper but some of the lobster chunks that were floating, got peppered significantly. I rinsed them off and ate a couple but they were really peppery. I added some more heavy cream to the chowder and it was okay. Same with salt or any other spice.
  8. I learned sugar work back in the '70s (before microwaves were as versatile and no silpat) I was making a spun sugar "dome" to set over a large croquembouche and as I did a pass over the top, my helper opened the door, across from me and the breeze blew the hot string over my arm. I had to set the pan I was holding in my left hand down before I could turn and get my arm under cold water. The string stuck to my arm and burned what looked like a crease the length of my forearm. At least I didn't damage the cage. I slept that night with an ice pack taped to my arm. My catering job went off without a hitch.
  9. Sugar in China

    This is also done in the U.S. south, at least is used to be - when I was growing up there in the 1940s. In western Kentucky, one of the "summer salads" was similar to the "Tuscan" Panzanella - just toasted bread was used instead of a rustic bread. The tomatoes were cut into chunks, sugared, often with brown sugar, and set aside to "weep" - just before serving the toast cubes - about 1 inch, were tossed with the tomatoes and chopped scallions were sprinkled over the top. It was delicious. I remember the first time I was served Panzanella - and I mentioned the tomato salad, they didn't believe it. During the winter, canned tomatoes were often layered with saltines, sprinkled with sugar and baked. This dish was called "scalloped tomatoes" and I loved it.
  10. Sugar in China

    The package I have from the Middle Eastern store is a Golchin product - they produce a lot of food items, spices and such. This link is to a page of images of sugar products. They produce sugar cubes with saffron, with cinnamon, and with cardamom. Golchin sugar products. The folks there have told me that these sugars are taken with tea - holding the piece of sugar between the teeth while sipping the tea. (They also carry an impressive number of teas that are popular in the middle east)
  11. Sugar in China

    Is it in a box with a parrot on it? La Perruche is carried at all the Hispanic markets here. And in the health food stores. It comes in "rough-cut" cubes and "small" cubes. The Middle Eastern market has a couple of different brands - one is made in Turkey. You can also get cubed Demerara sugar cubes - Roland is a common name and is in all the Asian shops, the India shop and one supermarket (Von's) has in in with the teas as well as in the sugar aisle. Another brand is Gilway Demerara sugar. Saint Louis Comptoir Du Sud raw sugar cubes from Martinique are sold online in a 1-kilo box. And even Domino has a product that in "gourmet shops" - Williams Sonoma used to have it. Comes in a brown box and I can't remember the product name offhand. Amazon carries the La Perruche and the Roland products.
  12. Sugar in China

    Here in the U.S. I think they make the candied seeds to include in little gift boxes of candied fruits and nuts for the lunar new year. I know there are lychees and plums, melon and coconut, ginger and mandarin orange, pineapple and the lotus seeds. I think there has to be eight. I have one of the "candy boxes" someone gave me years ago and it has 8 sections. The lotus pods were grown by a "specialty grower" who was in the '80s, down near Fallbrook, CA and Peter or his brother Ji would drive down to buy them. The grower actually grew them for florists who used the dried pods in flower arrangements or wreathes, but grew some without the use of chemical fertilizers or pesticides for the ethnic communities who used them for food.
  13. Sugar in China

    Your mention of a friend originally from Hunan triggered a memory for me. When I lived in Reseda, CA in the 1980s, there was a restaurant, Hunan House, just two blocks from my home and I often walked up there - going in thru the back door because it was a lot shorter than going around the block to the front. Two of the sons had been patients of the orthopedic surgeon for whom I worked so we also knew each other that way. And in fact, it was in their kitchen that I learned about steaming mature ginger to get it tender enough to candy or crystallize. On one occasion I was walking through the kitchen and saw Peter's grandmother with a large basket of fresh lotus. She was removing the seed to candy them - in "rock sugar syrup" for Chinese New Year. They did a lot of "feast day" specials in the restaurant, including the Christian holidays - they were Catholic and had escaped China just before the "revolution" in 1949, helped by the Church and they had been dedicated to paying back for 30+ years.
  14. Sugar in China

    If you have time, put it in a container that seals tightly. Put a saucer or a piece of foil on the top of the sugar block. Wet a clean sponge, squeeze till it is just damp and set it on the saucer or foil. put the cover on tightly (one of the reasons I use Cambro containers or the click and seal type) the next day it will be fine. You can soften small amounts in the microwave but only do 5-10 seconds at a time, it can go from rock to lava quickly.