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    Michigan, USA
  1. Do you think so? He would love that but I didn't want to be out of line or put anyone on the spot. My husband really could help, though; it would not have to be a mini class or anything. I'd pay for this, or I could donate to charity in the chef's name or something... Thanks Elfin! Oh, and I love Megan's sandwich recipe, too.
  2. LOL Peter -- I clicked on this topic specifically to post the same recipe. I make it with red raspberries and have friends vying for it as their Christmas gifts. One woman brought her empty bottle back after New Year's asking for a refil
  3. Hi all, I wasn't sure where to start with this question, but I'm in SE Michigan so maybe my fellow midwesterners can help me. My husband is turning 40 in December; he's a chef wanna-be with some solid skills, and I want to give him a great birthday gift/celebration. My first choice is CIA advanced bootcamp, but with travel, lodging and missing a week of his real job teaching calculus, it's not really affordable or practical. So, I'm looking for a creative way to give him some hands-on instructional time (beyond the local "meals in minutes" kind of thing) plus a couple of great meals and maybe a wine tasting... Is this ringing any bells for anyone? I'm assuming there's some kind of established 2 or 3 day program I could sign him up for, but I'm not above trying to cobble this together myself. This guy really deserves a great birthday. Any ideas? I'd pretty much consider any location in the eastern or central time zones, but obviously Great Lakes states are ideal. Thanks in advance!!
  4. Does anyone else see that thought bubble above Lisa's head in judging -- the one that says, "I will cut you"? Eyelids at half-mast, chin out, arms folded; I expect her to pull a switchblade out of her sock any minute. And for those of you who actually cook (I just eat, but I'm a very appreciative audience), where do you fall on the "cooking Puerto Rican in Puerto Rico" issue? I thought it was a mistake going in, but then they kept her, so..? The thing that really bugs me is the implication, in her mind if no one elses, that Lisa has done better overall, or is a better chef overall than Antonia because she ended up staying one round longer. Everyone can see that Antonia had a solid record throughout. Lisa should have been gone by round 4. Just had to get my two cents in. And, Go Stephanie!! I'm going to miss this show!
  5. Wow -- thanks for the responses! Annie, I know what you mean. Before I'd ever tried it I just assumed you cooked the rice until it had completely broken down so it wasn't lumpy. I'm still on the line with the texture, but warm v. cold seems to help me on that score, for some reason. I'd originally conceived this as a mommy-daughter project, but my guess is now that I'm completely intriqued and can't wait to try it, my daughter will be indifferent Thanks again!
  6. Chocolite Bars! They were aerated chocolate and so good I can't figure out why you can't get them anymore. I was in Quebec last fall and discovered the "Aero Bar"... I ate a lot of chocolate in Quebec.
  7. About 15 years ago I eagerly tried rice pudding then immediately swore off -- the rice was not as soft as I expected, and it was cold (chilled), which for me was a bad combo. So a couple of weeks ago my husband got rice pudding gratis as part of his meal and I decided to try again. The rice was evident but soft, and the pudding was warm. Delish! My 7-y-o loved it, too, and though I'm not the cook in the family, I told her maybe we could try making it. I've been looking at recipes today and many of them have "chill before serving" as the final step. I realize I can eat it any way I want, but is it generally considered a cold dish? And, since I'm not the cook in the family, would it still work if I substituted some of the sugar with brown sugar, maybe half white half brown? Seems like it would add a nice flavor. Thanks in advance!
  8. God bless you! This, I think, is the worst food faux pas if not neurosis -- having to freeking tell everyone at the table what you don't like and why and blah blah blah. Boring, rude and immature (can you tell this really fires me up?) My husband is a great, creative cook, but both his mom and sister have so many won't-eats, and are so willing to tell you all about them, it's truly embarassing. It's one thing to decide after a few experiences that you're not fond of something. It's another to not even try it (sister-in-law and her husband), or turn down an otherwise delightful dish because you don't like one ingredient. My MIL once exclaimed about the delicious looking, wonderful smelling dessert we were serving, then announced, "Well, I won't like it -- it has raisins." Please. I prefer meat without bones, but wouldn't miss a meal over it I think it's because it's often hard to get off the bone, and sometimes has not gotten hot enough to get sufficiently cooked near the bone. Especially chicken.
  9. Just wondered if anyone else has had this experience... I was turned on to "Chez" by a friend who is a boater; this is a great Lake Erie town and the restaurant is amazing. We sat on the deck overlooking the Vermillion River, with a really knowledgeable staff catering to our every whim. I love it when you can completely trust the staff for wine recommendations, etc. Can't wait to go back, and, since we're only a couple of hours away, I may not have to!
  10. 15 on an off night? I'd be impressed. We recently tried the latest incarnation of a very successful upscale restaurant that has "reinvented" itself recently; THAT was depressing. We got there before 8, and were probably the youngest table in the place by 20 years, and our average age was 36. No offense to anyone; it just seems a mix is what you'd be going for. And, by the time our entrees came we were pretty much alone in the place. We all agreed our food was unremarkable, and though we used to love the place and the chef is the same, we all agreed we wouldn't bother going back. No doubt your word of mouth is spreading. Keep it up. How do I get on the mailing list?
  11. This is a great feature. Burgoo was the first week, I believe, and my favorite so far was the George Forman Grill installment. I know it sounds weird (it did to me, too, especially as I was just waking up) but it's wonderful so you might want to check it out in the archives.
  12. Well, money is always an object, but: Port and chocolate Great cheese from the Zingerman's counter Cultured butter A big Zin or Cab And, at a restaurant, foie gras. Oh, and great coffee, always
  13. OMG -- fried up with a poached egg (or two) is one of my favorite meals.
  14. My husband is the cook in our family, and he makes great polenta. I admit I haven't paid attention to every step, but the polenta got a lot better (and more consistant) when he stopped cooking it in a pot on the fire and started using a double boiler, with the polenta cooking in a stainless bowl on top of the pot. He got the process from Lynne Rossetto Kasper, at http://www.splendidtable.org (not sure it's still posted as he printed this out in '02, but it is from her cookbook, "The Italian Country Table: Home Cooking from Italy's Farmhouse Kitchens"). She gives the ratio as 3 parts liquid to 1 part cornmeal, and says for creamier polenta increase the liquid by about a third. My husband varries the liquids a lot -- milk, water, chicken stock, etc. He just made some using part apple cider the other night, and with his pork ragu it was to die for! HTH!
  15. Easy: they just use the part of the chicken where the egg comes out...
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