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Posts posted by Sony

  1. If he can get over the sense of incongruity, for someone who likes sweet things stirred into oatmeal on a cold wintery day, half of a baked winter squash, caramelized with butter and a little brown sugar or maple syrup, especially if it's (mostly) prepared the night before. 

    Along the same lines, I like microwaving a sweet potato for breakfast.

    If I'm feeling savory, I'll top with low-fat cottage cheese and salsa (sounds gross, tastes good,and the cottage cheese provides protein and a little fat, which helps breakfast stick).

    If I'm feeling sweet, a little brown sugar and cinnamon, maybe some Smart Balance, with a a few nuts on top and glass of milk (again, a little protein and fat for staying power).

    I find that sweet potatoes microwave nicely at work too, so if I'm running late, I can just toss it in my bag without much effort.

  2. I used to pick up an occasional food item in my local TJ Maxx or Marshall's when I was based in norhte Jersey. Since returning to Syracuse in 2003 I have continued to scan the shelves but noticed an absence of known quality brands.  I'll guess that this change is not chain-wide but perhaps they are shipping the bette stuff to more upscale markets?

    All I'm spotting locally appears to be mundane stuff with fancy packaging and average quality - and none of it carries any brand name I've seen in Wegmans or in specialty food stores.

    You know, come to think of it, since I moved to Ithaca last fall, I haven't bought anything food-like from TJ Maxx or Marshalls. All of those food purchases I made were from when I lived around DC. :hmmm:

  3. I always tend to check out the home good section 1st when go to these stores too! A few of my purchases have been:

    Dave's Insanity Sauce (that stuff is wicked hot!)

    Nielsen Massey vanilla extract

    Fini balsamic vinegar

    Sarabeth jam

    (I tend to get more cookware and gadgets than foodstuffs, I guess)

    You've got some great finds! And you're smart to check the expiration date. For some things, I wouldn't care too much, but I once bought a bottle of rancid walnut oil- yech. :wacko:

  4. A nice way we always used them in my house growing up is as a flavoring for vegetables. My favorite version is with zucchini:

    Take about 1/2 cup of sliced onion, and sweat over medium heat in 1 TB neutral oil with a little salt. When onion is translucent, add about 1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne and 1/4 tsp turmeric. Fry till fragrant, add in 1 tsp chopped garlic and 1/2-1 lb shrimp heads. Saute for about 1 minute, then add in about 1 lb. zucchini, sliced into thick half-moons. Add about 1/2 cup water, salt to taste (easy since the water will boil down), cover partially and and cook till zucchini is tender. Then turn up heat and uncover to evaporate water as you wish (I like to leave a little water as it turns into a sauce with the cooked down onions).

    Serve with jasmine rice. Yum.

  5. hummingbirdkiss, there are also other models that hook into the sink but don't roll on wheels- they're meant to sit on the countertop. Such as this model:

    Countertop Dishwasher

    Just a different option to consider.....

    Has anyone had personal experience with a Danby portable? I'm not familiar with the brand, but have read a few good reviews online:

    Reviews on Danby dishwasher

    It would be nice to consider a built-in at some point, but since I'm only renting, I don't think my landlord would be too keen on the idea... :biggrin:

  6. Thanks so much for your input Pierogi! It's nice to know that there's someone else in the portable camp :raz:

    Just out of curiosity, what kind of service issues have you had with your newer Whirlpool model? I expect that unless I can find a good one secondhand or score some awesome deal, I'll be spending over $400 after taxes...so the less time and money I need to spend on repairs/maintenance, the better!

  7. Hi everyone!

    I found an awesome new home to move into this summer.....only downside I can see to the place right now is that there's no dishwasher. Though I know I can survive without one, it would be an awfully nice convenience.....

    So, what I'm looking for is suggestions for a model that is:

    -durable (would rather hand wash than have a machine to constantly repair)

    -relatively big (looking for one that is almost full-size and on wheels)

    -efficient (hopefully Energy Star rated and and one that will clean on a first pass)


    Any positive recommendations- or models to avoid? Thanks in advance for any help!

  8. I'm experiencing my first growing season in upstate NY....being from the South, it's so strange to me that it's April and seedlings aren't being sold yet, so I've decided to start my own for the 1st time :biggrin: .

    Since I'm still an apartment dweller, everything is in containers and will stay that way since I'll be moving this summer within town.

    This afternoon, I started seedlings for:

    Purple basil

    Spicy globe basil




    Italian parsley






    Supersweet 100 tomatoes

    Radishes aren't planted yet- I need to get some more soil to prepare pots for them!

    (And just for fun, a mix of wildflowers is planted too).

    I can't wait for my babies to sprout!

  9. Thanks for the advice- JAZ, the 2-bowl feature is one of the features that put me in the KA camp.

    Right now, I have a soft spot for my beat up old Oster kitchen center (if I were going to be a superhero, I'd be an Osterizer! :raz: ) But it's getting older and might need to retire soon. Hopefully not before I save up enough for a larger model!

  10. Hi everyone!

    I like cooking for people, and feel like a food processor could help with the process. Mainly with shredding stuff quickly (like potatoes), but I'd love to have something that can bring together doughs, especially for pie crust. I've decided on getting a KitchenAid (unless someone wants to talk me out of it :wink: )

    Now, the issue is size. I'm typically cooking for 4-6 people when I entertain. Would a 7-cup fit my needs? Or should I save a little more and invest in a 12-cup model?

    Any advice? (and apologies if there's already a thread on this- just kindly point me in the right direction if there is :biggrin: )

  11. High school: ramen noodle with frozen mixed vegetables. The guy was extremely impressed that I made ramen in an actual pot  :blink:

    In college: Pasta mixed with powdered pesto sauce  :huh:  and chunks of chicken breast.

    Powdered Pesto..? Lol, how did you sleep at night? :raz:

    I know- sometimes I still have trouble sleeping at night when I think about how I lost the love of my life because of powdered pesto sauce..... :raz: Never used the stuff since then.

    Hopefully life is teaching me to refine my culinary choices AND my romantic choices.....

    ....well, one out of two ain't bad.

    I'm loving this thread! Such great recollections (or lack thereof :wink: )

  12. Currently partnerless, but I still want to play! The times I have first cooked for "da man" in my life have consisted of the following:

    High school: ramen noodle with frozen mixed vegetables. The guy was extremely impressed that I made ramen in an actual pot :blink:

    In college: Pasta mixed with powdered pesto sauce :huh: and chunks of chicken breast.

    Post-college: The boy made his Italian mama's chicken francese recipe (which was absolutely delicious!) I made a salad with spinach, sundried tomatoes, feta and olives. He picked out all the sun-dried tomatoes. :hmmm:

    During grad school: I warmed up leftovers for a guy who eventually became my boyfriend. Roasted potatoes, sauteed swiss chard and spice-rubbed salmon. We're still good friends...and as oblivious as he can be about some things, I am surprised to know that he can still remember that meal. :wink:

  13. So, I'm the only one who pours Frank's Steakhouse Bleu Cheese dressing into a bowl, add's enough Pirate's Cove pre-crumble Blue Cheese to get the chunk-factor  high enough, and calls it a day?  :laugh:


    I haven't heard of Frank's Steakhouse dressings....?

    My laziness dictates when I make blue cheese dressing. I usually have everything I need to make it in my fridge. However, I only find myself concocting it when the last dregs of sour cream are hanging out in the bottom of the container. At that point, I throw in a little mayo, blue cheese, and buttermilk to thin, add salt and cayenne to taste, mush it up, and call it a day. One less dish I've dirtied :biggrin: .

  14. I did, but only through elementary school :huh: With after-school activities in middle school and high school, I was often getting home right around (if not after) dinnertime.

    My perception may be skewed, but it seems like the after-school snack is a waning tradition. A packed snack that's scarfed during a practice or in the car or on the bus between activities seems more commonplace. Maybe something served at an after-school program. I don't think I knew anyone who ate cookies and milk at the kitchen table after school :raz: .

    So, I ask you, eGulleters- what did you eat (or do you eat) after school? Or, if you're a parent of a school-attending child, what are your kids eating between lunch and dinner? Is it at home?

    Personally, I LOVED after-school snacks when I was little. Often leftovers from dinner....sometimes warmed up. Occasionally tuna salad. "Pizza" made with an English muffin. A piece of cinnamon toast. Maybe half a peanut butter sandwich and a glass of milk.

  15. eggplant gets bitter when it starts to go over the hill (don't we all?).


    I'd like to try steaming eggplant. Should I leave it whole?

    My favorite way to eat eggplant in the way my mom taught me. Slice eggplant into fairly thin rounds (1/4 " to 1/8 ") Rub slices down with a mixture of salt, cayenne and turmeric (not too much turmeric- just enough to give it a lovely golden color). Let "marinate" briefly- about 15 minutes. Lightly dust with flour, then fry in a thin film of oil over medium-high heat so that both sides get nicely browned and the flesh is almost falling apart.

    I like to pat them a little with paper towels before serving- eggplant is one of those vegetables that, to me, seems to absorb oil despite how "properly" I fry it. No matter- it's delicious and a nice treat when I miss mom :smile: .

  16. I don't like to eat too soon before bedtime, but I'm definitely in the "I'm-too-hungry-and tired-to-cook-anything- and-there's-no-leftovers-so-I'll-eat-cold-cereal " camp. I tend to want cold cereal for dinner as well more in the summertime- probably get tired of eating other cold dinner options (salads, sandwiches, etc.)

    And what is it about cornflakes with bananas that makes it such a good combination? I don't generally crave fruit on my cereal, but when I have cornflakes, I sorely miss the banana when its not there.....

  17. Driving back on business travel, I saw a simple sign on the side of the road- "Thrift Shop Bag Sale". Checked rear-view mirror, braked hard, and turned into the parking lot of a thrift shop. Thought I might be able to find a new coffee table.....

    Store was closing in 15 minutes, but the staff welcomed me in. After a 5-minute scan of the furniture section, I knew my new coffee table wasn't there. But passing through the kitchenware section, my eyes landed on a Zojirushi rice cooker. 10-cup model. $4.75.

    Is it sad that this little dust-covered machine made my heart jump? That I felt absolutely elated when I plugged it in and I felt the warmth emanating from the bottom?

    It ain't fuzzy logic. The lid isn't clear. The measuring cup is missing. Definitely an older model.

    For $4.75, I don't care! :biggrin: Yay! What a lucky day.....

  18. Today I bought miso that is shelf stable- Hikari brand shiro miso (product of Japan). I've only ever seen miso in the refrigerated section, so this is something of a novelty to me.

    2 questions:

    1. The package gives no indication that I should refrigerate once I open it. Should I?

    2. What have your experiences been with miso sold in the unrefrigerated section?

    If it's important, I typically use miso in soup, salad dressing and marinades.

    Thanks in advance for any guidance! I also apologize if there's already a thread on this- my eGullet search didn't turn up a good match.....

  19. Hello,

    I bought a HUGE head of cauliflower the other day (roasted cauliflower for dinner tonight :wink: ), and it came nicely nested in smooth pale green leaves.

    I could just compost them, maybe throw them in the scrap pile for making veggie stock (though I'm not sure if it would get overpowering), but though I'd ask the peanut gallery for any ideas :smile: . Thanks!

  20. Saw a nice piece of beef shank at a Korean market in NYC...at least I think it's a nice piece. I've never cooked beef shank before :raz: .

    Suggestions, please? I assume I'll need to braise it, but flavorings/other cooking methods are welcome!

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