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About Shalmanese

  • Birthday 06/05/1985

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    San Francisco

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  1. Favorite Thermometers....

    A man with one thermometer knows the temperature of everything. A man with two thermometers knows the temperature of nothing.
  2. Slow Roasted Cherry Tomato Sauce

    FWIW, if you don't want to deal with skins, even slow roasting already canned tomatoes greatly improves their flavor. Buy whole peeled tomatoes in cans, cut them in half and remove the stem, roast cut side up and then use as you normally would.
  3. California burrito is a SoCal thing, centered in San Diego. It's practically unheard of in NorCal. There's a few places that do it in San Francisco but it's not standard. Like any regional specialty, finding it outside of the region is often a challenge. If you find a place that serves both french fries and burritos, you can usually talk them into making it as a special order. The problem is, outside of SoCal, there's not many places that do both. Another dubiously stoner yet pretty amazing combo is subbing broken nacho chips for the rice.
  4. Aging a steak w fish sauce

    previous eG thread.
  5. Oxtail Soup

    For an entire ~2000lb cow, there's only ~4lb of oxtail so it doesn't take much for demand to rapidly swing prices. Enough price insensitive yuppies started buying it because they saw some recipe on food network that it's shot up in price, same as flank steak or chicken wings.
  6. You're chopping your vegetables too coarsely. This is about the texture you should be aiming for.
  7. Oxtail Soup

    When they were cheap, oxtails were a neat substitute braising cut that would save a few bucks. But now that oxtails have gotten stupid expensive and I've never found them at a price worth it for what you get. Remember, whatever price per pound you see them at, multiply by ~3 for a similar yield to whole muscle meat. In almost all circumstances, chuck, brisket, shank or cheek is going to be better value. The only time I ever absolutely have to have oxtail is for my oxtail ragu ravioli. They're braised in just a tiny bit of red wine + aromatics and there's nothing quite as unctuous, the texture is almost like an egg yolk. It takes all day to make but it's so intense that I only serve 3 - 4 per person so one batch can last for quite a few dinner parties when stored in the freezer.
  8. Avoiding Dashi in Japan is always going to be a challenge. You pretty much need to avoid most things that have some kind of soup/sauce component and stick to things with a few, obvious ingredients like Tempura or Vegetarian Sushi. Are you going to Japan to experience Japanese food or you're just going to be in Japan and need to survive on any kind of food? If it's the latter, there's a lot more options at places like Indian restaurants or Italian restaurants where the cuisine isn't so fundamentally rooted in seafood. There's also the distinctively Japanese tinged Yoshoku which borrows from Western influences but is unique to Japan. Curry rice, for example, if vegetarian should be completely safe and the ketchup version of omurice should be as well.
  9. They claim that sanitized sponges have a higher load of dangerous pathogens compared to unsanitized ones and posit that the surviving bacteria rapidly recolonize the sponge, meaning at least some remain alive. They don't go into the details of sanitization and I wonder if slight tweaks to the procedure would do a better job. If the entire mass of the sponge reaches 80C+, it's hard for me to imagine that much would survive that regime (I don't think there are any identified spore forming bacteria that live in sponges). I'm guessing commonly used sanitization methods leave cold spots in the sponge where enough bacteria survive to recolonize the sponge.
  10. I've always found that anything I've been able to pack is universally better than anything an airline can serve. I don't do cold dishes very often cooking at home so travel is a chance to stretch my legs a little in that direction. It's also permission to splurge a bit on expensive ingredients since a) no matter what I buy, it's still cheaper than paying for an upgrade and b) having something to look forward to makes the experience a little less intolerable. If I'm just trying to put together something quick, I'll usually swing by a grocery store and pick up some nice cured meats (my first taste of Jamon Iberico de Bellota was on a flight), a piece of fancy cheese I've been eyeing for a while, some dried nuts and fruit, a bag of fancy potato chips and a piece of fruit for dessert. If I have a bit more time, I'll prepare something like a muffaletta sandwich or a marinated chickpea salad or cold somen noodles.
  11. Heading to SF - where to hit?

    San Francisco is very vegetarian friendly so even most regular restaurants should have plenty of exciting veggie options. If you want vegetarian only options, Greens in the Marina is probably the most famous and a local institution, it was Steve Jobs' favorite restaurant. In the Mission, there's Gracias Madres which is an upscale vegan Mexican place, Udupi Palace which is vegetarian North Indian food and Shizen which is vegan sushi. All are beloved local neighbourhood spots where even omnivores frequent regularly. Enjoy Vegetarian would probably be closest to you inside of Chinatown and is quite good. Also, a number of places in SF have started serving the Impossible Burger (the new faux meat startup) so that might be a fun thing to try if it's not available where you are yet. But honestly, I feel like you're going to have a much more exciting time dining focusing on great vegetarian dishes at non-vegetarian restaurants.
  12. Seafood stock help

    Why grind them? I've found that the peels from even 2 pound of shrimp is enough to make at least a liter (4 cups) of unpleasantly rich stock. I just simmer them for 20 minutes on the stovetop, maybe 20 minutes in the PC hammers them so much the flavor cooks out?
  13. Foodie Tech

    Yeah, but a $20 refractometer requires you to extract a sample which I doubt grocery stores would be happy with. The entire appeal of this is that it's non invasive.
  14. Are most of the dishes prep related or serving related? I tend to be a very improvisational cook but, now that I'm in a place with enough counter space, what I found helps to array all the ingredients and prep tools onto the counter before you start cooking and mentally walk through each stage of prep to understand what equipment is necessary and when. I've found doing it this way allows you to think way more easily about strategic reuse. For example, if I have a bowl I'm marinating meat in, once the meat goes in the pan, I'll use that bowl to store chopped onions unwashed. It saves me a trip to the sink, I use one less prep bowl and I get an additional little bit more flavour from the marinade into the dish. If I know I'm going to use a colander twice in a dish, I'll a) stage the clean use before the dirty use, ie: blanching green beans before draining pasta and b) have the colander set up to be ready to drain again after the first use. Before, I would have hurriedly grabbed a second colander seconds before I needed it but now it's there and ready when I need it. That, plus cleaning as I go (something else I didn't used to do), means I'm often left at the end of cooking with just a dirty chopping board and knife plus whatever dishes dinner was served in to clean up at the end of the meal.
  15. Chocolate dessert times two

    In the US, sweet cream is cream that hasn't been cultured (as opposed to sour cream). It's usually used in the context of butter since all heavy/whipping cream is assumed to be sweet cream unless specifically stated. Since the poster is from Poland and there's no other sweetener in the recipe, maybe they mean cream sweetened 30% by weight with sugar?