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Everything posted by Darren72

  1. Sorry that I wasn't more clear. I am not doing any cold smoking. I am only doing a hot smoke. But to do the hot smoke, I was going to use Ruhlman and Polcyn's cold smoked salmon recipe as a starting point. Namely, use their pre-smoke cure. Then, instead of cold smoking, I was going to do a hot smoke only.
  2. Hi everyone, I am going to do a hot smoked salmon this weekend. I am thinking about doing something quite similar to the cold smoked salmon in Charcuterie, but rather than finish with a cold smoke, do a hot smoke at about 200-250 in my Weber. Is this approximately the right procedure, or are there other recommendations you'd give me? Also, I'm guessing it will cook in about 25 minutes or so -- is that on target? Thanks!
  3. My last trip to Blackbird was mixed. I loved the food, but was seated 45 minutes after the reservation time. We spoke with the hostess several times during the wait, but they didn't seem particularly concerned about this. Once we sat down, we had a great meal. I go to Avec more often and have always had a great experience. I tend to like to sit at the bar when I'm with just one other diner because I feel like I get better service, and I hate sitting next to random people at the larger tables. I always seem to be seated with someone who wants to talk with me and my guest, rather than his own party.
  4. Darren72

    Crepes--Cook-Off 23

    I'm not exactly sure. Around 9 or 10 inches, I'd say. Yea. You season carbon steel just like you do cast iron. Sometimes if I haven't used it in a long time, I'll scour it a little bit with steel wool and reseason it. In fact, you're sort-of supposed to reseason the pan every time you use it. Heat it up with some shortening in the pan, let it stay hot for a while and then wipe it out. I find that getting the temperature just right is key to avoiding sticking, but once you hit that sweet spot you can easily bang out crêpe after crêpe after crêpe in short order. ← Sam, beautiful looking crepes. I have a black steel pan also (maybe mine is blue steel), but eventually switched to a non-stick pan for crepes because I couldn't seem to get the temp right, and the crepes would sometimes stick. My pan is well seasoned. But could you give us an idea of how hot you want the pan? For example, about how long before the batter bubbles as in your second picture -- is it 3 seconds, or more like 15? I also noticed that you don't use a crepe spatula (or whatever that thing is called that is about 1 inch wide, 8 inches long, and has a bend in it). Do you find that the spatula pictured below works well? I don't have the crepe spatula either, because I don't make crepes enough. Lastly, I noticed you didn't put wax paper between the cooked crepes. Do you find they stick together at all when they cool? Thanks!
  5. This is a good point. I've been in AA for a year now and quickly discovered that the same thing applies to the original Zingerman's deli. It's always crowded. The prices are very high. The staff is incredibly snobby (but in a way where they try to come off as hip, regular people just trying to steer you to the good stuff -- I don't need to be *told* to buy the one olive oil I *will* like...unless I ask, just let me try them without the commentary!). $11 for a sandwich? Come on. I know it's high quality ingredients, and the sandwiches are great, but that price strikes me as a "look at me" premium. The funny thing is that Morgan and York (aka Big Ten Market) on Packard is much, much better. They don't have as complete a selection as Zingermans (but they do have wine and beer). Their staff couldn't be friendlier. It is never crowded. The prices aren't low, but you don't feel you are paying too much. Now they have large self-service vats of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and maple syrup. Regarding Zingerman's roadhouse...I've only had the pulled pork from the camper outside, and it's very good. Contrary to my rant above, it's only $6. Quite a bargarin.
  6. Just one quick thing about wood and water: you don't necessarily need to soak the wood. If you use chunks (not chips), soaking doesn't penetrate most of the wood anyways. I prefer chunks for long smoking sessions. If you use chips, and have them in foil with holes poked, you also don't need to soak, especially if your temp is low. Soaking the chips doesn't do anything bad, it's just that in many situations you don't need to do it. Sometimes you need to replenish the wood and don't have time to soak it.
  7. Sitram is top-quality. If it's the right size, it would be a god buy. On the other hand, you may be able to get a functionally similar stock pot (i.e., stainless body with aluminum base) for a lot less at someplace like Target. The stainless steel body probably won't be quite as heavy-duty, but otherwise they'd be similar. ← Thanks. Will the more heavy duty stainless steel in the Sitram show up more as better durability, or will I notice differences while cooking? On the one hand, it seems if you are simmering stock for several hours, heat distribution is less of an issue: the heat will go everywhere. Or would the sitram actually perform better in this regard? Thanks again for your help!
  8. Interesting - thanks a lot. I guess I was concerned about scratching the interior of the pan because I thought it would - slowly over time - erode the cooking quality of the pan. I may have been making a false analogy with a nonstick pan. Thanks for clearing this up. By the way, I'm in the market for a stockpot (around 11-15 qt). I'm leaning towards the sitram professional 14qt on amazon for around $82. Any experience or thoughts?
  9. This is an incredibly useful Q & A - thanks everyone, esp. SLK. I have a question about the scratch-resistance of stainless steel pans. A friend tells me that I'm "too careful" with my pans and that it is very difficult to scratch stainless steel by, for example, using a stainless steel spatula or spoon inside it. Is this true? How difficult is it to scratct SS? Thanks.
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