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  1. We are going to Favignana and Trapani for 11 days and would like to know where (and what) to eat. I will also be in Palermo for two days. We are leaving on Friday.
  2. I have almost all of the books listed on this thread. I like the King Aurthor Flour Cookie Companion the best. I like Alice Medrich's cookies and brownies also.
  3. One bookshelf that is 8' x 8'. I haven't counted them all. I get rid of books about once a year to make room for better books.
  4. I use this book quite a bit. Especially for the Eggplant and Okra recipes.
  5. I have owned this book since it was released. I guess I will have to look into making some of this stuff.
  6. Great information. That really helped me out.
  7. Just stay away from Viking. We just replaced our Viking ovens at the cooking school. We have had three different Viking ovens (not even close as far as temps) along with two different Viking cooktops. My GE electric oven at home cooks better and more consistent than the Vikings. I use a professional baking stone at home so that makes the GE oven perform more like a professional oven. All of the guest chefs say the same. Most of them like Thermador, Dacor and Wolf. Major hint for cleaning porcelain coated or steel cooking grates - Oven cleaning cycle. It makes life really easy and there is absolutely no way to clean them that well by scrubbing.
  8. It is the same as flattening the pieces by hand one at a time.
  9. I would say it depends on the type of texture I am looking for. If I am looking for a soft unparbaked texure, I use the mixer. If I want a flaky parbaked crust, I use my hands. I like to use butter as it has more flavor. I don't use a pastry cutter any more. It does not give as good of a texture. I cut the butter into cubes and squeeze one cube at a time with flour in my hand. The flat pieces of butter make a much better flaky texture. I then add ice water and refrigerate covered in plastic wrap. I do not use any other utensils until I roll it out. I roll it out with a whole lot of flour on both sides. I then pick it up on the rolling pin and dust off the excess flour with a pastry brush.
  10. I have been reading this thread for two days. It is a really cool story.
  11. I am glad you had a good time with the pig. Maybe next time you can try a Cochon De Lait. I think John Folse has a recipe in The Evolution of Cajun and Creole Cuisine cookbook. Cochon De Lait 1 whole pig, 30 to 50 pounds Salt and cracked black pepper Granulated garlic for seasoning, plus 1/2 cup 2 cups melted butter 1 cup white wine 3/4 cup Louisiana hot sauce Cochon de lait is the art of cooking a pig before an open hardwood fire. Although the term cochon de lait is French, the origin of this Louisiana social event is obscure. It is know that the custom began at least a century ago and has since been popular throughout Cajun country. It is possible that the Germans who settled in St. James Parish in 1690 were the first to introduce the cochon de lait. These settlers brought pigs to the area and were skilled butchers. Local legend, however, tells that veterans of Napoleon's army brought the traditional preparation of cochon de lait to Louisiana in the early 1800s. Many of these soldiers settled in a town in Avoylles Parish they named Manusra in honor of the site of their last major campaign. Since then, Mansura, LA has been designated by the Louisiana legislature as "La Capital du Cochon de Lait." Normally, families cooked pigs in cochon de lait style as the centerpiece for holiday gatherings. The pig, usually weighing less than 30 pounds, was sometimes cooked hanging from the fireplace in the kitchen. The most common method was to cook the pig outdoors over a pecan wood and sugarcane fire. The basic process of the cochon de lait has remained the same over the years. Today, much larger pigs are cooked to feed groups of people. Pigs up to 200 pounds are regarded as excellent for open-fire cooking. When preparing a cochon de lait, season the pig well inside and out with salt, cracked black pepper, and granulated garlic. Inject the front and rear hams and tenderloin with an infused liquid made with 2 cups melted butter, 1 cup white wine, 3/4 cup Louisiana hot sauce and 1/2 cup granulated garlic. Using a meat saw, cut through the backbone at the neck and tail and lay the pig open flat. Wrap the pig in wire mesh that has been washed and cleaned thoroughly and then secure it with wire to hold it in proper form during the long cooking process. The pig should then be slowly rotated in front of a hardwood fire built 3 to 4 feet away from the pig. The fire, constantly maintained, cooks a 50-pound pig in 6 hours. Estimate 1 hour of cooking time for every 10 pounds, but keep in mind that not all pigs will cook at the same rate. After each hour of cooking, flip the pig head side down to ensure even cooking.
  12. Use all of them to make one batch of Habañero sorbet. Realistically: Habañero Peach Ice Cream would be good. Habañero Peach Cheesecake would be good. Habañero Peach Jam.
  13. You can use it to fix a broken custard.
  14. Put it in the blender or hit it with an immersion blender. That is what we do at the cooking school.
  15. I roasted a pig last year for Thanksgiving and fried a turkey. It was more than enough food for the 6 of us. Suckling pigs are long and slender and don't have a lot of meat. After removing the backbone and all of the guts, the pig probably weighs 18 to 20 lbs. They do have a lot of bone and a big head. If you took out the weight of the bones, hooves, and head, you probably end up with 8 to 10 pounds of actual meat. The pig would not fit in my oven (I have a wall oven). If you cut off the head, it may fit in your oven. It would not fit in my oven even without the head.
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