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Posts posted by jefferyc

  1. I started with Alton Browns that includes the traditional ingredients except for Jalapeno's. I modify the method by sauteing the bacon by it self untill it's very crisp. Then saute the onions in the rendered bacon fat. I also add burbon and liquid smoke. This last time I had great suceess with smoked turkey legs. I use the meat to make sausage and keep the bones to make a stock. it worked out great.

  2. I don't think oxegen is the issue but starch is. The instant you put starch in water it gels, the same way corn starch lumps up when you put a spoonfull into boiling liquid. With out enough water (~4 qts./lb.) pasta will gell on the outside then stick. I don't see how this device can prevent it.

    Man, I was just having a long discussion about this with my girlfriend.

    Her point was it does the same thing as I do on the stove. Hot water on pasta. I was saying that it does'nt have enough water and there needs to be oxygen circulating to help it cook properly.

    Then it brought up questions scientifically about what happens when water boils.

    I was under the impression that it looses oxygen when it boils and that is why you can't resuse pasta water for a second batch. And that in an open container, big pot, it looses oxygen and gains some back. Then I thought that if this cylinder is letting steam out through what appear to be vents on top then new oxygen can't get in at the same time steam comes out. And when the steam stops rising and the oxygen is able to get in at that point no cooking is being done. The only data I could find to backup my loosing oxygen theory is  an episode of  Good Eats I vaguley recall and sites for making Tea that all say the same thing.

    Does anybody know if this is true? Because this would be another reason should'nt work. I think it would be fine for cooking shrimp and asparagaus though.

  3. Hey thanks for the Idea. I live in an apartment as well and was wondering how to do some bacon.. Great thinking!!!

    My first attempt at Charcuterie bacon (and my first eGullet post! of course it's about bacon...)

    We did savory bacon sans nitrite and found it to be not-so-much. Too meaty, too savory, not enough smoke flavor. But it looked good.


    So, I broke down and ordered some pink salt and did a sweet version, adding a little liquid smoke to make up for it not being in a smoker to cook. (Apartment living... alas.) I also added some honey to the party and it turned out deeelicious.

    Um. Yum-a-rama.




    Next on the docket (in the fridge) is a pork belly divided into 3 test bastardized Alton/Charcuterie combo recipes. I know they sound odd, but no harm in tryin'...

    1) honey mustard

    2) molasses pepper

    3) Guinness & chocolate (two great tastes -- they must taste great with bacon, right?)

    Will post about the results when they are ready!

  4. There are cuts my butcher won't get because he has to order 30 at a time.

    While I wait for my order of DC/Q #s 1 and 2 to arrive (damn you, UPS, and your bumbling handlers, damn you!), I have a question about pork belly for bacon. I can pretty easily get massive slabs of pork belly from a local Asian butcher or carnicaria, and it looks like it's pretty good quality. However, my best source for prime pork, the Whole Foods butcher, wags his head at me whenever I ask him for belly; apparently, if I bug him, I probably can get some carefully fed, organic, utterly pampered pig on special order. Of course, I'll also have to pay him two or three times what I'd pay the other butchers.

    Is it worth it? Should I take the plunge at WF or give the belly elsewhere a go?

  5. From Here

    Basic Info and Characteristics:

    Capsaicin is an incredibly powerful and stable alkaloid seemingly unaffected by cold or heat, which retains its original potency despite time, cooking, or freezing. Because it has no flavor, color, or odor, the precise amount of capsaicin present in chiles can only be measured by a specialized laboratory procedure known as high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Although it has no odor or flavor, it is one of the most pungent compounds known, detectable to the palate in dilutions of one to seventeen million. It is slightly soluble in water, but very soluble in alcohols, fats, and oils.

  6. I had a 4 duck weekend. Fter reading the book I went to my poulterer at eastern market. Cut off the breasts and froze them. Cured and confited the legs using a modified version of the one in the book. Made a liver spread, cured and confited the giblets and made them into a stew using a recipe I found in nose to tail eating. Oh and duck bones make a stock you won't believe.

    Thanks for writing the book

  7. ATK did a testing of these knives and found they were great for slicing and chopping veg, but not for heavier tasks. Since I have limited space I'll stick with my 12 inch chefs.

  8. Try salting first to draw out the water. Then bread and bake at 400 degrees. Makes a great base for eggplant parmesean <sp?>

    Biscuits I can do (plenty of butter and buttermilk, use some cake flour, and don't knead them too much, as little as possible).

    I find that eggplant is a difficult thing to do well consistently.  Fried in thin pieces it comes out well, but grilled is inconsistent as is sauteed dishes.  Soaks up oil like a sponge sometimes.  Love it when it's good, though.

  9. This is the one I took and I loved it.

    If you want to do something a little more hardcore (and therefore more expensive) the L'Academie Fundamental Culinary Techniques program, one night (3 hours) a week for 20 weeks, is very good.  You will learn a ton and realize that you are just scratching the surface!  However, it runs $1,800 plus another couple hundred for equipment (knife set and chef jacket). 


  10. Thank you for my first belly laugh of the day.

    On a lighter note, someone asked me last week if basil was a carb. Yes, at least they asked.

    Well, "herb" in American English is "erb"; maybe someone pronounced "carb" that way, you know, "arb," and that kinda sounds like "erb."

    Or, then again, maybe not.


    The question was followed by "I'm on Atkins..."

    An Atkins story related to me by a server from another restaurant:

    Customer orders the steak and potatoes and says: "I'm on Atkins, so can you hold the potatoes and add extra steak?".

    Yeah, right. :blink:

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