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Everything posted by halloweencat

  1. ah! thank the gods (and natho) that after decades of wondering, i at least have part of the answer. thank you! cheers --
  2. quick question.... what is the difference between jam, preserves, marmelade, and compote? always wondered. thanks in advance. cheers --
  3. fwiw, i just got a vegan baking book (which was highly recommended), "vegan cupcakes take over the world" it's one of the few cookbooks that i've actually enjoyed reading. the style is quirky. the recipes call for soy milk, rice milk, yoghurt, a variety of things. i have only made one recipe thus far (just got it), and served them at a party (rosewater pistachio cupcakes). everyone +loved+ them, including my very foodie friend who really liked the crumb and the light texture. no one knew they were vegan until i told them. fwiw. cheers --
  4. hallo -- can anyone recommend any good california (or french) viogniers? thanks and cheers --
  5. just to add quickly... vitamin A is found in many plant sources. re C0Q10 (which is a coenzyme)... i found numerous references to plant sources, including "rice bran, soya beans, nuts (hazel, pistachio), sesame seeds, vegetables (cabbage, spinach, potato, onion, carrot)." peanuts were also listed. didn't go through all the prevantatives listed in the post, but just wanted to add the above. cheers --
  6. a while back a friend served me a beet greens recipie from deborah madison. it was +so+ good i wanted to lick the plate (but refrained, out of guest-ish sensibilities, 'tho i told her of my impulse...she laughed ). 'tho i didn't lick the plate, i +certainly+ had seconds. unfortunately, i cannot remember in which one of her cookbooks the recipie was...i'll ask (or perhaps someone on this thread might know). cheers --
  7. cocoa-lulu, keep us posted! i really like that one from bed, bath and beyond. different look, and i'd use it for different presentations. what i love about the one from stonewall kitchen is that it's elegant, clean, minimal without being cold or clunky. i look at it and imagine my home turning into a vienna coffeehouse. cheers --
  8. here's another thought... chocolate-lovers often have decided preferences for milk or dark (meaning, no milk). for example, i'm in the dark chocolate camp. when some well-meaning person gives me milk chocolate i don't eat it, no matter how cute the rabbit or how beguilingly packaged the confection. i'd adivise having a good selection of both, seeing how things sell, and then tinkering with the amounts sold, where needed. cheers --
  9. hmmm...i actually don't think this is an example of misleading labelling. oakhurst's label said that it did not use milk from cows treated with bgh, and the pledge is not misleading either, just a statement that they will never use milk from bhg cows. it seems monsanto was angling for the removal of all references of that nature, but found the additional fda/gbh reference enough to settle the lawsuit. cheers --
  10. here's one....i'm pretty sure there have been others. i remember this being a bit of a tummult a few years ago... http://www.commondreams.org/headlines03/0708-10.htm oakhurst was not saying the bgh was bad, but it was prominently stating that it's product was (and would always be) free from artificially introduced hormones. monsanto went after oakhurst for essentially stating that its product was free of something (like the "contains no msg" labelling, and similar), but which did not explicitly disparage monsanto's product. in another article related to this, the lawsuit was apparently settled when oakhurst agreed to add a line to its packaging that stated that the fda had found that there was no difference between milk from cows treated with bgh and cows that were not. i think there might have been others, but that's the one i remember. cheers --
  11. re dishwashers... we've had two boschs. love them. they do a great job and they're very quiet, and that quiet is +well+ worth the money, especially if you live in a home that has a lot of open space or community space. in our old (small), 2-level townhouse, the entire home was open space. only two rooms (and a bathroom) were enclosed with their own doors. whatever anyone was doing in the house anywhere, you could hear it, from kitchen activity to the television. when our old dishwasher went on the fritz we knew we wanted the quietest, most reliable that we could get. we got a bosch, a mid-range one. we +loved+ it and never regretted spending the money because it cleaned things well and added no needless noise. in our second (slightly larger) townhouse, the dishwasher also needed to be replaced. we wanted another bosch, but my SO was convinced that there probably wasn't much difference (re noise) between the middle-level one and the lower-end one. so we bought the less expensive model. it wasn't a mistake, because it does clean well and it is quiet, but it's definitely not as quiet as the first one. if we were to have the chance to do it over again, i would definitely push for the bosch that was more akin to what we had before. quiet (especially in this new house, with our noisy neighbors), is an important commodity for us. (p.s., your new kitchen seems wonderful. ) cheers --
  12. milk producers who use bgh already have sued to prevent non-gbh milk producers from labelling their products as such. i'm not up on the status of the suits or any resolutions, but the arguement from the bgh users was that labelling a product non-bgh was essentially the same thing as a warning label, since it implied that something was worrisome or dangerous about bgh. the corporate dairy industry has been fighting this particular fight for a while. i wonder if this bill will help them in their cause (which i do not support). cheers --
  13. yes, i've been waiting for two years for the price to come down, but no luck so far! i also know two years is a relatively long time for a vendor to offer a product (like this). there's no telling how long the contract with the supplier will last, or for how long the supplier will be making them. i, too, thought of having a glazier cut the glass. i wouldn't want plexiglass for the supports, so i'm not sure what i'd do for them. i'm still thinking about it. cheers --
  14. oh, and to add... little chocolate menus would be novel and neat. sure, you can read what's on the board and see what's in the cases, but it would be a neat experience to sit down at a table and peruse all the wonderful delicacies. cheers --
  15. one of my greatest comestible pleasures is chocolate + tea (earl grey tea is a suburb combination). re the ambient aroma -- the smell of coffee is fine, but if that's the primary thing i smell when i go into a chocolate shop, i'm going to think the place might highlight coffee over chocolate. i wonder if something can be done so that the coffee aroma doesn't overshadow everything else. consider chocolate events -- a chocolate "cocktail" hour once a week when new, exclusive or special treats are offered (free samples wouldn't hurt). chocolate tastings -- like wine tastings but with chocolate. chocolate pastries would be nice, as well as (during an event, perhaps), showing how choclate can be incorporated in unusual dishes (like savories). it would be neat if you could have a temperature-controlled showcase or window in which you could display high chocolate art (e.g., a life-size chocolate dress, a city in chocolate -- you could do the town itself, complete with well-known buildings). i love the idea of being able to see how the chocolate is made. pre-assembled gift baskets is another great idea. you might also think of getting personalized dishware with little, wonderful sayings or quotes related to chocolate (cups, bowls, etc.). that would be a hard gift for a chocolate-lover to turn down. i wish you every success cheers --
  16. i'm in love with this bistro shelf...but i can't quite wrap my mind around the price. i've tried searching the web for food supply equipment (bistro shelves, pastry shelves), but i've had no luck. does anyone know where to find this thing, but for a better price? http://www.stonewallkitchen.com/prdsell.as...lassBistroShelf thanks very much in advance. cheers --
  17. i cannot, regrettably, help you with your wine dilemma, but here is a thread listing lots of pointers on how to throw a great dinner party... http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=83597 good luck! cheers --
  18. repeating a few memes, no doubt... 1. entertaining is a mindset as much as a to-do list. one can entertain when even one person comes over, and one probably should, because the more one entertains, the better one gets at it. 2. plan the menu ahead. make as much of it ahead of time as possible. guests come to see you, so it's disappointing for them if the host is to busy with prepping and cooking to mingle. 3. cleaning is +terribly+ important. make sure all the dishware and glasses are clean (it's embarrassing to notice a water/mineral stain as you pass a glass of wine to a guest), make sure the linens are clean. 4. MAKE SURE THE BATHROOM IS cLEAN!! +sparkling+ clean. guests will not tell you about the dust bunnies or stains they notice. but if they do notice, it will affect the experience. i always put out 3 or 4 hand towels (not those gimmicky guest/fingertip towels with the embroideries that don't do the job). i put out 3 to 4 hand towels, folded up nicely on the counter and/or on the rack. bath towels and washcloths are +not+ appropriate (and not because it's an emily post issue, but who wants to think about drying one's hands on a towel that was used to dry private parts? even if it's clean, it's really not best to offer bath towels or washcloths). make sure there's enough toilet paper available (in view is best, so guests don't panic as they start to rummage through one's cabinets). 5. i try to do all my vacuuming the evening before or the morning of, to allow dust particles that might have been stirred up a chance to settle. i try to do this for people with allergies (people with allergies, does this help you?) 6. it's best to have the table set and the candles lit and the music playing before guests arrive, because a beautifully presented table (with all atmospheric accompaniments) is so powerful and welcoming. however, if this is not done, it's a great way to make use of the first few guests who arrive who feel awkward for being first and ask how they can help. 7. when a guest arrives, a) take her/his coat, b) offer her/him a drink, c) offer her/him an hors d'oeurve. 8. go with real linen or cotton for the tablecloth and napkins. vintage and antique tablecloths and napkins can be gotten very inexpensively at tag sales, estate sales, and -- especially -- ebay. $10-$50 for a huge, dining room tablecloth. polyester feels artifical and has a poorer appearance. it really makes a difference. 9. make sure the garbage can is accessible. i also highly recommend garbage cans that are enclosed. it makes a huge, positive impact not to see the gappy, white plastic insides of the trash bag filled with the evening's detrius. 10. if you have guests that don't know each other well, it's your job to introduce them and introduce areas of conversation in which they both might have an interest or experience. also take note of your guests regarding seating. one of my regular guests is hard of hearing (but he won't point this out to others so much), so i sit him next to people (generally) who have louder voices. 11. if the dessert is store-bought, take it out of the entemann's box and put it on a nice presentation plate (generally, i'd recommend going the extra mile to either have someone bring a homemade dessert or make it oneself). 12. be careful when someone offers to bring "something," even if it's +sounds+ specific, like "dessert." if the guest winds up bringing a box of danish from the supermarket and the host feels that it's not a fit for the meal because it's mass-produced, well, that's a wrinkle that could have been avoided. 13. VERY IMPORTANT -- +DON'T+ assume your guests will know the dress code. if there is one, let them know. i was astonished last year when one of my relatives showed up at my 6-course birthday dinner with paired wines, antique silverware, antique linens, antique china (borrowed from her) dressed in sweats. i was doubly astonished as i had been discussing the 6 courses with her (quail eggs, caviar, etc.) weeks in advance. NEVER assume. 14. ALSO VERY IMPORTANT -- don't assume that guests know that they are or are not free to bring someone. if you have limited seating, whether due to budget, space or intimacy of the event, let them know. uninvited guests can be very problematic. cheers
  19. it's not just exercise, and i don't think lack of activity is the +main+ problem for obesity, 'tho it seems to be a +major+ cause. obesity certainly seems to have a lot of pressing factors. lack of activity is one, but diet is absolutely another major component. i have worked out 5-7 times a week for about 20 years. hard exercise, strenuous dance (very strenuous dance), running, nordic track, the ellipse, for 45 minutes to an hour. it really worked wonders on my body and my mind. however my weight still seemed to fluctuate inexplicably within a narrow band. during all these excercise years i've never been overweight and have ranged from slim to fit. but the regular up-and-downs of weight (invisible to others, probably, but noticable to me because, well, it's my body) were very fustrating. i am not a starvation eater. the caloric intake wasn't the problem. in fact, i seemed to watch my diet much more closely than others (i certainly worked out a heck of a lot more). i don't drink alcohol. i don't eat a lot of crap (cookies, doughnuts are like once in a blue moon -- i'll buy a box of doughnuts maybe once or twice a year, eat two and throw the rest out -- and when i eat those two, i'll eat a quarter or half at a time, because that satisfies, that's enough). i don't eat fast food, breakfast cereals, pasta, red meat and have mostly been vegetarian and vegan. i am an extremely healthy eater, if you examine my choices. i don't overdo healthy food (like peanut butter and nuts). i don't like or eat jelly (lots of sugar). i drink perhaps 5-10 cups of coffee year, and 90% of that is decaffeinated. i drink +lots+ of water. i don't drink any soda. i'm also not a fad dieter, which is why i was unfamiliar with the science behind the south beach diet. i thought that with a name like that, it had to be that infomercial ilk. but reducing certain kinds of carbs has had a +definite+ effect. i had already cut out pasta (which i love), but when i stopped eating processed foods that had high degrees of corn syrup in them (a lot of breads have it), when i stopped eating certain types of carbs, when i really monitored my sugar intake, and started eating lower on the glycemic index scale, there was a definite effect, and i became slimmer than i had been. i didn't drink a lot of juice (occasionally would buy orange juice and then have a few glasses during the day). cutting out/down orange juice also was a significant factor. while i was engaging in the new dietary choices, i remembered a pediatrician's conversation with my mother, years back. he told her that my triglycerides were high. i know i didn't know what that meant, and i'm pretty sure my mother didn't either. i was healthy in every other way, so it seemed nothing to cause concern. different people process foods differently. it seems that mine does not process these types of carbs well. i have never been even close to obese and probably never will be. in my adult life i have always been athletic and strong and health-concious. but while i was following very general guidelines that were good, there was something that i had missed that was particular to my physiology. i'm glad i'm better informed now. if i had another person's physiology perhaps i'd be model-thin, from all the exercise i do and the general diet i keep. btw, re the people not biking places...i've biked places (to work, to school, etc.), but i'm very reluctant to bike now. traffic is always a potential threat (at least around here). i've been hit by a speeding car as a pedestrian. i don't want to press my luck any further. i happen to be close enough to my gym that i can walk, but not everyone is. and i will take my car when its cold or rainy. cheers -
  20. i'd also keep soy milk or soy creamer on hand, for those with dietary preferences and/or dietary allergies. they come in small cartons, so the cost would be small (silk is the best-tasking brand, imo). cheers --
  21. i have grocery shopped in a variety of areas, and i see, overall, most folks (of all economic persuasions) making the same poor product choices. this is, of course, anecdotal. i cannot divine from mere observation if the customer in front of me in the check out line usually purchases lots of vegetables or if the cookies and chips and bars she's now about to acquire are an unusual splurge. overall, i see a lot more that would be classified as non-nutritious selling, than nutritious. you can also see it by the shelf space. more shelf space goes to an endless pantheon of cookies than goes to dried beans and grains. on the bright side, it has also been my observation that stores are generally stocking increasing quantities of nutritious stuffs (organics, no trans-fats, low-salt, a greater variety of produce, etc.) than ever before -- and +that's+ truly encouraging. cheers --
  22. i've had just as many successes and failures with "mainstream" ingredients as with tofu. tofu in other cultures is definitely mainstream -- it should not be derided for what it is not, but valued for what it is. it is supremely versatile (drinks to entrees to desserts) and is a wonderful canvas on which to paint other flavors (aside from having its own delicate flavor). deborah madison's books have a lot of ways to cook tofu. many tasty ways include marinading it and sauteeing it. my SO who is not a vegetarian (and a bit reluctant where tofu is concerned) really, really liked the tofu sauteed in orange sauce that i made for us. cheers --
  23. great idea re the rinds...i know key lime doesn't looke green. cheers --
  24. thanks for the suggestion...i'm afraid i'd need a recipie, to guide me on how much key lime juice would be needed. thanks and cheers --
  25. we're throwing an oscar party this weekend. while i was at wegman's, i came across some key limes. i impulsively bought three bags and would love to work them into some sort of dessert for the party. i'm looking for ideas/good recipies...key lime pie would be last on my list. i'd like to do something other than key lime pie, because that's the first thing that folks associate with them. does anyone know of any good recipies? thanks and cheers --
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