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CharityCase

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Everything posted by CharityCase

  1. Having recently rejoined eG after several years, I'm pleased to report that my Magnum pepper grinder (which I ordered after reading this thread) continues to hold up well. It's aesthetically unattractive, and the plastic shell doesn't feel as regal as the peugeots do but it seems to put out a consistently good grinding. Occasionally the tension screw on the bottom needs to be re-tightened (probably slipping due to regular use) but no complaints otherwise.
  2. An admittedly late contribution on this but having watched it and enjoyed it, I thought I would recommend it again to those who haven't seen it yet. I agree with Alex that it could've been trimmed somewhat. Thought the movie gave a pretty good overview of some of the non-food traditions in Japan (which I admit to not being familiar with) such as the rites of the first born to follow his father's footsteps. Wasn't sure if that was just some PR from Jiro to cover for the fact that he volun-told his son to follow him.
  3. Hi, A group of guys are hitting the non-stop excitement of collingwood this weekend. It's a mix of foodie and non-foodie folk. This isn't a nudie bar bachelor party affair but there will be drinking. Right..ahem. Could someone recommend a moderately-priced resto in either Collingwood proper or at Blue mountain that could entertain 5 people for moderate prices (mains under $20)? One of my issues of Toronto life mentioned Centro as well as Motorcycle Café...thoughts on these or anywhere else worth trying would be great.
  4. I gave Penang a try tonight. It was packed, I took that as a good sign. It was pretty solid, the roti canai was fresh and satisfying but the Prawn mee was...so so. The pork and shrimp were past their prime and the broth was too sweet for my tastes. I walked past Bukowski's but the huge banner turned me off of it. I may try that tomorrow though I'll be in Cambridge for most of the day so perhaps I'll try some of your recos for that area.
  5. It means that I have a per diem (good) but that I work for a charity (bad...rather good but also bad) AND I'm getting married in a few months (terrible...as in terrible for the pocketbook). So I'd like to keep my lunches to $10 - $20 and my dinners to $30 excluding a beer or two. Thanks for the other reco's folks!
  6. Hi, I'll be hitting your town the weekend of April 12th and I'm staying at the Radisson downtown. I'm not going to have too much leisure time on account of work but I do need to fit in a saturday dinner and a Sunday lunch. I was in Boston exactly once in the last 10 years and I didn't think ahead to where to eat so this time I'm hoping I can lean on you for help. I'm on a pretty tight budget so high-end things aren't really doable. I won't be entertaining others so I'm fine with cramped shacks and sitting at the bar. I kind of like commotion instead of quiet come to think of it Here in Ottawa we have way way way too much middle eastern food so I'd prefer something a little different (and having seen many recommendations for Oleana I thought I'd mention that). But as your fair city is reputed for seafood I figure that'd be good. Any suggestions?
  7. Well I found the above method was perfect. half a package took 3-4minutes off the heat, and followed by a quick rinse they were good to go. Thanks all!
  8. Hi, I'm a seasoned food person, and goodness I've eaten alot of rice noodles in my day. But just as pitchers sometimes forget how to throw a curveball, I seem to have forgotten how to prep rice noodles for soups and thai curries. I most often have these kind/thickness lying around: I've soaked them in hot water in the past, but then I find I slightly overcook them when dropped into boiling water for 30 seconds or so. I also think I shouldn't need to boil them if they're sdoaked properly. So, for this thickness (about 1 or 2cm..I'm usre you know what I'm referring to) what is your preferred method for prepping rice noodles for a soup or stew? How do you get them to that just-rght semi-chewy state?
  9. Hi Pam, I will check the brands I have at home but in general I have not enjoyed any of the store-brought brands (ex. Unico, Italpasta). I've been very pleased with the italian-made brands though..I don't know what the exact difference is but the consistency is closer to an all-white flour and holds up alot better cooked. I was able to get these at an Italian deli...you should be able to too.
  10. CharityCase

    Seafood Noob

    I love the flavour of what's labeled Whiting here. Last time we had some our monger cleaned and gutted them, and clasped the tail in the mouth of the fish, forming a circle. WE bake them on a bed of chopped fennel, carrots and onions. They only take 10 minutes at about 400 or 450F and when they're finished you can carefully yank the whole bone piece out. They could conceivably be cooked like smelts too..floured and pan fried and served with a lemon wedge...yum!
  11. Well, the citrus-scented Tuna was a huge hit...so much so that the birthday girl didn't even get to try it! The presentation was beautiful and the only thing I would do differently next time is cut back slightly on the lemon juice..it was a tad on the acidic side. The seared tuna on starfruit was ok...I found the accompanying aioli underwhelming though.
  12. Thanks for the tips everyone. I'm going to do the Citrus Scented Tuna Tartare as above and will report back on the success. There's some other fun stuff on the menu (scallops and caviar, grilled shrimp, oysters with a smattering of condiment choices) so fingers crossed this will go off well. Incidentally, I found an interesting seared tuna recipe on the Food Network's website that I'm also going to try out: Seared Tuna on Star Fruit
  13. I'm doing a party on Saturday that will have a few different seafood apps...oysters, shrimp, scallops and the like. I'd like to do a tuna tartare but I would love some suggestions other than soy/wasabi and asian flavours. I say this only because I've had it/seen it very often and surely in the wealth of intellect on eGullet there's someone with a novel idea for this? I don't think that tuna would suit all the acids of a ceviche...maybe you've got other ideas? In either case the format should be easy to handle as an appetizer and not too messy. Many thanks eG folk!
  14. So by that you mean turn it off in the middle of the brew cycle, let it sit and fire it back up to finish brewing? I hadn't thought to do that but it sounds like a good idea.
  15. Hi, We use a Hamilton Beach Brewstation at work, and because we brew 3-4 pots a day with it the buildup of grinds and coffee residues demands cleaning it quite regularly. there are numerous suggestions through a google search: vinegar and water at varying strengths, denture tablets, citric acid, the pre-packaged solutions (ex. Urnex)...as we use water from a filtered water device I think the problem is with coffee residue and less so with deposits and scaling. Is there something tried and tested that you use to keep your drip coffeemaker fresh? A no-fail solution? Or are the commercially available mixes preferable to vinegar and water for some reason?
  16. Truth is, my question was a loaded one as I had been trying to remember the name of this one, and figured it would have to come up in someone's top 10 list. So thanks!
  17. My Dad is a burgeoning foodie who often hosts dinner parties. I think he'd love a book on matching wine with food for Christmas..do any of you have suggestions or recommendations you can pass my way? (Moderators: Feel free to move this is if belongs in the Wine Forum..wasn't sure where to post it).
  18. 1. Sri Racha - On a hot dog, in some soup, it's versatile and great if you know how to use it 2. Sambal Olek 3. Any kind of salsa verde - made from scratch is best but I don't usually take the time. The herdez brand that's available everywhere is great for eggs and for enchiladas but I really like the La Costena brand for something off the shelf. 4. Generic Tabasco-ish hot sauce - and this is mostly a matter of preference but any of the cheap vinegar based sauces is fine with me. That's because I need it for a bloody caesar and I haven't found a more appropriate replacement yet 5. Chamomile DesJardins homemade hot sauces - available in Ottawa and possibly through mail order though I don't know where as they've not got a website except this profile: http://www.carpfarmersmarket.com/vendors/c...-desjardins.htm the sauces are unique and usually have lengthy ingredient lists that include a balance of heat and fruit.
  19. Does anyone know of a similar comparison done in Canada? Our brands are largely limited to large conglomerates - of which Shopsy's is probably the best though nothing like a Nathan's. Maple Leaf is everywhere but the Juicy Jumbo family doesn't "cut the mustard" with me - too salty and again not enough chew for my palate....just soft meat taste. Natural casing dogs are pretty tough to find in my area.
  20. Seconded, and I know I already said that but it bears repeating.
  21. Indian cooking guru and eGulleter Monica Bhide has a fantastic recipe that I come back to at least once a month when beans are in season. It's a nice complement to a stewed curry as the beans stay crispy and fresh. Monica Bhide's Green Beans with Coconut
  22. Hi, I am with an organization you may know called Voluntary Service Overseas, or VSO. We are very similiar in size and scope to the Peace Corps except we're a non-profit agency and place Americans and Canadians. As we also work and place volunteers throughout Namibia, I've copied the relevant section from our country-specific handbook for you below. It's safe to say that in Windhoek you'll find almost anything and for most of our volunteers their trip is usually in search of things like cheese and chocolate...almost certainly not available where you'll be or if it is it's past its expiry date. I'm a bit hesitant to recommend bringing seeds for agriculture since those you'd be bringing are not for Namibian climate, and you'd have to declare them and very likely go through hassles at the numerous borders you'll cross.
  23. CharityCase

    Ottawa

    If you really have to stay in the Byward Market area (alot of choice and alot of mediocrity) your best bet would maybe be Domus. It is smallish and bistro style and so you should inquire about whether they have a private room as I'm not entirely sure they do. I have still not been to Sweetgrass, which specializes in Aboriginal cuisine, but others I know and trust have said they really liked it for something a little different. I would really give Beckta two thumbs up were it not for Stephen Vardy's departure to Whalesbone, and were it not mildly overpriced. Aroma, on the same street, is quite good if you like Mediterranean.
  24. 1. La Patriarche (17, rue Saint-Stanislas): A lovely highish-end meal (Table D'hote and a mid-priced Canadian red was $200) that focused on local game. What did I have? I had: Kir Royale with Cerises de Terre (Stone Cherry) liqeur in place of Cassis Venison Terrine stuffed with saddle of rabbit and a type of squash puree and a small salad of microgreens with fleur de sel Deer three ways: Larded Medallion seared and served rare, Deer liver with a very nice blue potato galette type of thing, and a Parmentier with braised deer, mashed potato and salsify pan sauce. Although all 3 were good the liver was extraordinary. Strawberry "tagada" which featured: strawberry soup, strawberry and basil mousse, and a strawberry and red pepper sorbet. The service was friendly though in English a bit silly and over the top. What French I do have I used well and that changed the tone from doting french waiter to "man in the background" which was nice. 2. Café du Clocher Penche (203, rue Saint-Joseph Est ) Thanks to eGulleters who have referenced this place in a number of threads. We arrived sans reservation and fortunately scored a table just before several groups made their way in. Having had a heavy lunch I chose something lighter from the menu - "Pavé au Saumon avec hareng fumé vinaigrette". Interestingly this was served atop a bed of what I think were carrot greens but didn't confirm with the waiter. My partner had a seared duck breast with brown rice so delicious you would never have thought it was brown rice. Service was exactly what you'd want in a bistro - friendly, helpful with an extensive wine list, and then out of your hair. I'd support the argument made by other eGulleters regarding restaurants in the old part of town vs. up and coming areas such as St.Roch where Café was located. It seemed hard to distinguish between menus in the touristed areas, and by their very nature the touristy areas had lots of options with not much to offer that was unique or different....lots of tortiere, lots of salmon tartare, etc.
  25. Hi folks, It's come time to replace our 10 year old Kenmore fridge with something of a better size that uses less energy. I've read through the "side-by-side" thread to get some ideas as I've been told that a side-by-side fridge is more energy efficient than a conventional one but due to our tiny kitchen we're going to need something in the neighborhood of 18 cubic feet. In terms of our criteria: ensuring it's an energy star product and it will have to be configured to open left (hinges on left side). I think this is usually done when you place the order? Can someone whose purchased an energy star product in this size class recently give me your opinions on makes and models? In this smaller size bracket the LG models seem popular but I don't have firsthand experience with them and I'm hoping someone here does, or has experience with other products they like.
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