Jump to content


participating member
  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by mike_r

  1. Mr. McGee, thank you greatly for taking the time to answer our questions, and please allow me to pull another thread of knowledge from the skein of your brain... I was cutting up raw, peeled butternut squash today and noticed again the tight, dry, residue it leaves on my hands...repeated washings in hot water with lots of soap didn't alleviate the problem very much. what IS this residue and what reaction is occurring between it, the air and my skin? any info you can relate would be greatly appreciated; as for me, i will wear gloves from now on thanks again! --mike
  2. this might sound weird, but until about eight or nine years ago i didn't even know brownies came in boxes; i thought they all came out of my mother's recipe book she's a great cook and baker, and i count myself fortunate that alot of the "flooring" issues here didn't happen to me growing up...
  3. mmm...sounds like a loverly dinner! sage is one of my favorite herbs as well; i love wrappng it around a porkchop and then wrappping prosciutto around that...yum! i have a problem getting orange or red chief lentils to come out particularly beautiful either; last time i soaked the lentils, then cooked them regularly...they were so waterlogged that they overcooked almost instantly so i share your pain... can't say it enough, great stuff!
  4. the first things i ever cooked were: FBI cake, when i was eleven, cocoa snickerdoodles, the next year, and then i learned about scrambled eggs. at thirteen, when you want food in you FAST and your mom won't buy junk food, you learn little triks like adding heat to eggs and eating what happens. PB&J doesn't count, i think. then i discovered cinnamon, and this led to boneless pork chops in a mixture of cinnamon, soy sauce, vanilla, and probably something else. i remember at the time it was sublime, heavenly...but maybe i should ask my sister for the real answer, as she was my first victim...
  5. i save whatever i can for stock; the green from leeks, mushroom stems, parsley stems, bits of this and that; i used to scrub my carrots really well before peeling, then save the peels for stock but i wasn't always happy with the result. my stockpot isn't my garbage bin, but it is a practical use for stuff that is perfectly flavorful, just not exceptionally palatable in their current form. flavor is flavor. oh and onion peels add a lovely robust color and flavor to stocks, especially veg stock.
  6. i revise my former opinion...i will attempt a bacon-chocolate cake sometime in the near future; furthermore, i believe a bacon, lobster and warm peanut butter sandwich could quite possibly be the key to peace among men...
  7. mike_r

    staff meal

    pasta with tomato-habanero cream sauce and smoked chicken, with root veg chips left over from the tapas menu. mmm-mmm. tasty, but i know i'll regret it in the morning
  8. mike_r


    i've frozen prosciutto with no problems on a regular basis, and i think i remember working somewhere where they froze pancetta as well, mostly to slice very very thin...
  9. i think that's about it in a nutshell, lmf ...this is the first foodblog i've followed since i joined (what, a couple weeks ago? seems like ages;) ) and already i am entranced by your effervescent style and obvious love of food and cooking. much happiness to you both and i eagerly anticipate the coming week! --mike
  10. hahah yes, i like to scrape off the filling from four or five oreos and eat it separately, then crunch through the cookies with some milk. or separate the cookies, leaving all the cream on one side, and double-stack em. try this with duoble stuf oreos, woah...
  11. this thread reminds me of that simpsons episode where homer's driving down the street and a fudge truck and bacon truck overturn and smash into each other, landing the results in his hand bacon fat in chocolate cake? what about bacon and mont ice cream? don't know about that...
  12. that's one of the funniest posts i've read, and it absolutely does floor me! what really gets me though, is pickiness in general, rudeness, and especially close-mindedness. every night, when service hits full swing, guaranteed, sooner or later a server is going to come through the kitchen doors with another silly request. ok, sauce on side is lame, but it's old enough that it's easily doable. i DETEST people that come into the restaurant, look over the menu, and then request the beef with veg from the lamb dish, and this sauce, and that garnish, and well done, etc. create your own meal at home! legitimate food allergies, ok. not much you can do about it, and i don't want you dead on the restaurant floor. but if you don't like something, just say so, don't invent some silly allergy to compensate. rosemary? c'mon. atkins infuriates me. bread is the STAFF OF LIFE, people! and when you go out to eat, don't be surprised when the med-rare lamb you ordered isn't FULLY COOKED ALL THE WAY THROUGH! and don't order a pork chop well-done, and then send it back because it's too dry! oooh, and people who won't eat anything with the slightest hint of spice to it. when that habanero hits your throat you KNOW you're ALIVE! oh and finally i REALLY hate people who had a meal at the restaurant three months ago under a different chef, and when they order the chicken are shocked that it's not exactly like it was three months ago. upon being informed that there is a new chef in the kitchen, the response was, "well, can't he make it like it used to be?" whew. needed to get that off my chest. more a rant about pet peeves really, but honestly, i think anyone who goes out to eat should be forced to work at least one or two days in both the front and back of the house. or be an eGullet member, of course!
  13. when i eat mashed potatoes i drown them in gravy and then whip them with my fork so the gravy is homogeonized. potato-gravy soup, mmm! oh and i don't do it anymore but i used to fill in every single little square on my waffles with maple syrup my dad loved that as he was waiting for the syrup! ps the Anal Retentive Chef is a great routine. when i was a kid the swedish chef used to send me into hysterics, my mom tells me. the ha-ha, kind, not the screaming kind you get from clowns
  14. 35 this is the first time i've counted them, didn't realize i had that many. but it includes my top 5: the french laundry cookbook, the joy of cooking, aquavit, the frugal gourmet cookbook, and maida heatter's great chocolate desserts (autographed!) also on my kitchen shelves are 9 non-cookbooks but are related to food and cooking: cod, by mark kurlansky, salt, by same; caviar, california dish, by jeremiah tower; kitchen confidential; why we eat what we eat, by raymond sokolov; mcgee; and both the making and the soul of a chef, by michael ruhlman. my copy of culinary artistry is, sadly, awol.
  15. yeah, i was able to get it when i was in seattle, but they don't distribute this far east.
  16. mike_r

    Worst Beer Ever Tasted

    koch's golden anniversary (aka "golden shower") i don't know what the anniversary is but it sure tastes golden.
  17. hey alex try here for alginate and this one for calcium chloride. on another note, we've seen stuff like foams and gels become so commonplace these days that they are present on an immensely wide range of menus. we have foams on the menu where i work, which is NOT a four-star, contemporary restaurant. but it's become just another tool of the trade, like forcemeat, or any of the various standard cuts. my point is, how many "new" techniques and methods are there? please don't misunderstand, i love this sort of thing and wait with bated breath what the future holds, but i feel that eventually stuff like encapsulation using alginate, and sponges, and yes even caramel bubbles will be as commonplace as foams or microwaves or even sauteeing. just a thought...
  18. oh man i've been there so many times... strained the chef's beautiful glossy rabbit demi, put it in the sink, surrounded it with ice, turned on the water...and walk away. then, after realizing that i've just made a sinkful of very very thin rabbit soup, try to put it all in several stock pots to try to reduce back to the original demi while the chef is out...busted. try to explain proper cutting technique to the dishwasher at 6am, hungover, no coffee, and start slicing while looking at him to make sure he understands..."ok, you slice carefully, like this...see? slice, slice, sli--aaahhhh!" lemme tell ya, e-room nurses think they're really funny when it comes to the odd amputee... make a loverly mac and cheese for family meal, carefully stirring in the cheese over a double boiler so it's velvety smooth, using the last of the smoked chicken, mushrooms, etc. then, because i forgot to cook the pasta, it cools. then, sous chef strains cooked pasta (cuz i'm busy) and cools it for me. ok, no prob, drop it into the thinnest-bottomed pot we have (why?!)plop it on the back burner, uh-oh, here come the tickets...twenty minutes later, oh sh*t, pull it off the stove--it's hot, sure enough...and perfumed throughout with that overpowering aromatic biterness that comes from carbonized dairy... try to be cool and eyeball everything (back in culinary school) so as to go super fast when baking...i'm a cook, right? i can tell a teaspoon without measuring right? nope...
  19. coffee grounds; i've never tried it but i hear it works, cayenne pepper actually does work quite well, unless it's squirting...usually though two or three bandaids plus either a finger cot or a disposable latex glove works nicely...try curling your fingertips under when you cut; if you use your knuckles as a guide for the blade you are less likely to slice yourself; also, make sure your knives are VERY sharp...that way you have to use less force to cut, and are less likely to go off course and chop your hand off. either way maybe a batman-style utility belt filled with bandaids. peroxide, etc. if you are still loppin off fingers seriously though good luck; oh yeah look up any professional cooking text and it will have visual guides for finger placement to minimize cuts.
  20. thanx folks...actually i've been living in chicago for about three years now; and have found many many great beers that are readily available. I actually worked for goose island for six months, and lemme tell ya, you can't beat a three dollar sixpack of oatmeal stout. the honkers ale is ass, but the others are all right. the thing is, it's just not yuengling, ya know... and if anyone wants to reciprocate beer shipments let me know; i'll hook you up with some old style, goose island and bells. vw8v i'll slide over to the wiener circle for ya and get a a coupla dogs with everything oh yeah and send me some philly style pizza, eh? all the stuff here is five inches thick or cracker thin and cut into squares...squares i ask ya, what kinda respactable shape for pizza is a square...although there is one new york-style pizza joint on clark that hits it right every time...
  21. hey folks, i hope this is the right place to open this topic... i'm from outside philly originally, and as such i have a distinct bias towards yuengling beer; now that i live in chicago, however, what used to be a simple staple at the distributor is now a rare treat enjowed only when i can scrape together enough time and money to fly home. i have in the past flown back here with under a case in my luggage, both checked as well as carry-on, but am curious about whether or not i can have a buddy fedex me a case every now and then, or if i can fly with more than a case. illinois is a liscense state, if that helps.
  22. mike_r

    Pan Frying

    too much heat can and will burn your oil; oils have different smoke points, i like grapeseed oil because its smoke point is higher than olive oil and its flavor is not very intrusive. however, i was referring to the tendency of thin-bottomed pans to burn the food, as they do not distribute heat evenly. and do be careful when doing this, as the oil will spit and pop as any moisture on the fish instantly boils. good luck!
  23. mike_r

    Pan Frying

    if you are sauteeing remember hot pan, cold oil. get your pan smokin hot, then add your oil, then your fish. when using thinner pans be careful as you can easily scorch your food. for panfrying see above.
  24. good to see some east coasters (philly!) representing with the yuengling... yuengling sam adams fat tire red stripe rolling rock grolsch WHEN will yuengling start distributing west? i have to have my friends mail it to me, and have my bro pick me up some when i visit him in boston. someday, chicago, you will understand
  25. mike_r

    Early Morning Quaffs

    that sounds tasty...coffee porter, i'd try it. anheuser is releasing bud-e, which is bud with caffeine and ginseng. i'm a little scared by that prospect, especially when you consider what red bull and vodka did when it hit the market a few years ago...oh well some people will drink anything when i was just out of high school the cool thing to do was drink, of coarse. and smoke. and drink some more. and smoke some more. etc. i remember many days that began with a yawn, a stretch, and the pop of a beer tab....by three we'd ba faced again. the thing with drinking early is that you get tired real quick, and (hopefully) your body just gives up and you pass out before you can do yourself any REAL damage. i dunno, i can't do it anymore ya know...
  • Create New...