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Everything posted by kitchenmage

  1. I can see it being useful for people who need to exclude an ingredient, or want to use things they have on hand. Or people who find prep time useful. For each data bit that is exposed, there is a group of people who will find it interesting. What they will not realize is that the results include a teeny-tiny subset of the recipes online and since it skews corporate, it's not necessarily the most interesting or useful stuff.
  2. Chris, you're my kind of devious!
  3. How about a couple kinds of dip w/precut vegetables? ...or crackers... ...tiny tortillas and a bar of fillings for make your own wraps... ...i second pita, as well.
  4. I think it may be the umbrella drink of knives.
  5. Jim, I know it's a cheap knife, but I was sort of hoping it would give me a feel for the style before I spend real money. Most knives, even the cheap ones, are good fresh out of the package and this one has maybe 30 minutes of use on it. The knives I use all the time are sharpened by someoneElse with stones and things, and a Santoku I use would be, too. But this one hasn't made it that far. It sounds like you have used a Santoku that you like. Care to share what?
  6. Chad, what a great thread. I hope you are still popping in to answer questions. I am planning on upgrading my knives this winter - after I buy a copy of your book and do some other research. In the meantime, however, I hope you can help me with a current quandary. To put it bluntly, what's the deal with Santokus? At the suggestion of a friend, I picked up an inexpensive santuko to try out the style before I sink real money into a new blade. What I ended up with is a Henckels like this from Linens, Socks and OverThere. Yep, I know, cheap as all get out. But this is a test and it will be replaced by a real blade if I like it. But here's the deal. I don't like it. I want to like it. I feel like I should like it. But, so far, not so much. It rolls when I cut hard things, doesn't do anything impressive with soft stuff, and I can't mince herbs like with my old chef's knife. It's not bad on things like whole onions, but my old chef's knife handles those fine too. As someoneElse asked the other night, as he tried and discarded the Santoku for the nth time, "What's the point?" Sadly, I had no answer. Yet I am sure there is one. Can you help me find it? (I feel like all my friends found some cool new drink and I got the non-alcoholic version. I want my Santoku-tini with full on buzz!) One thought, the blade on this sucker has "micro-serrations" which I didn't notice (or know if it mattered) when I was being bedazzled by Sheets, Sh*t, and Somewhere's endless displays. Sometimes when I am cutting things, it feels like the serrations get caught and (maybe) defeat the purpose. Can you help me shine a little light on what I am missing? Is there a Santoku technique primer somewhere? Do I need to go get a different (not micro-serrated) blade to play with? Should I go back to my regular knives and just figure it's not my trend? I didn't have a goal (slicing onions faster, for example) in mind when I bought it, it was more of a lark, so I won't feel bad if there is no there there. But I will stop pulling the stupid thing out every time I start prepping food to see if it works better this time. Thanks!
  7. Susan, I just posted how to cut an epi at my site. Not quite as professional looking as KA's but not too bad.
  8. Amen! I just returned from my last, with any luck, pre-Thanksgiving shopping run which involved everything from Costco to two local farms. (I have five gallons of fresh pressed cider, the world can come to an end and I'll be happy.) Every tomato I have seen today (~18 kinds, and I started counting at the third store) is from Mexico, I'd settle for California which is better than that. Or Canada. Where are all the BC hothouse 'maters? Yes, it's November but I know people who have them in their greenhouses still. The produce in general is abysmal. Do they think that local/organic/small farm MUST mean wilted and icky? Limp broccoli. Flaccid green beans. 2 buck a pound mealy apples. Fortunately, I am within shouting distance of Lattin's Cider Mill (Olympia, run do not walk for the world's best cider!) and got apples and a few other things but I am having someone stop in Seattle to grab fresh stuff tomorrow on the way down. I just moved here and what I think is saddest is that when I asked vendors at the last day of the Tumwater Farmer's Market where I could get things in the off season they pretty much looked blankly at me. But what if I want food on, say, Thursday? Or for the holidays. Another down side, I don't even know what names to ask for. rmockler, do you know where I can find a list of who I should ask for an hour or two south of you?
  9. Wow! Thanks for taking the time to post all of that. I feel so much better informed. I've heard about Trinacria and the place in Shelton but not the rest of your picks. That's great!
  10. The lunch got postponed but I am still in the market for good food in general so, please, jump in with thoughts. We just moved to Oly and I am just figuring out where anything good is: shopping, restaurants, anything. So far, I have found the co-op for a little shopping, the last day (sigh) of the Tumwater farmer's market, and Lattin's Cider Mill (YUM) but the couple of ventures for a meal out have been less than stellar. Specifics: moderate priced (~10 lunch, ~10-20 dinner, is that moderate?) mostly but a good splurge place or two would be nice, most kinds of food are good (not a sushi fan though), good Thai would be a bonus!, a pizza place, espresso/cafe with good munchies... I am particularly interested in a place where we can get good breakfast/brunch late Sat/Sun morning - it's sort of an old tradition we are trying to revive. I need to recreate my list of 'usual places' here, if you know what I mean. I'm also looking for a bakery, fishmonger (I have heard about 'the one on the water' but no name...), other cool food shops. So what do you know that I should know? Thanks!
  11. tsquare, Yes, really a baker but I'm not the celiac. Pho is a thought, will check for places. Want a laugh? The lunch is with Shauna (aka GlutenFree Girl) and she's as blank on Olympia options as I am. I'll obviously have to come back and tell everyone what we figured out.
  12. I just moved to this part of the state (Oly) and am in desperate need of a good place for lunch this Sunday. Anyone got a favorite nice little cafe? My companion is celiac so we're looking for a restaurant that can pull off a glutenfree meal that involves more than removing the bread from the table. Thoughts?
  13. kicks the thread I just moved to this part of the state (Oly) and am in desperate need of a good place for lunch this Sunday. My date is celiac so we're looking for a restaurant that can pull off a glutenfree meal that involves more than removing the bread from the table. Thoughts?
  14. I leave dough in the fridge 3-4 days at times. Gives it a bit of a tang, maybe a smidge slower to rise, but it's fine.
  15. I am becoming a bit of a blueberry fiend so let me share what I have learned. Prune hard in spring Take off water shoots (on cloudy days) so the berries get light (you can still do this, shove cuttings in a damp, shaded spot and at least some will root) Remove dead twiggy branches that aren't doing anything. Damp roots are a good thing Acid soil is needed - sprinkle coffee grounds on the dirt for a quick fix. I use a dozen cups worth of grounds a day and they all go on my blueberries or rhodies. A friend of mine started caring for hers this spring and you can already see the difference.
  16. kitchenmage

    Shrimp heads

    I use my shrimp stock for spicy squash soup, but I also use shrimp in the soup...and now I want some!
  17. PurpleDingo, do you have an inner man, ahem, natively? Or do you rely on FTF to give you an inner man to bring out like some of us?
  18. If I was dating i might serve as a screening device: anyone who drinks it is probably not my type...
  19. kitchenmage

    Lime Mint

    hi dockhl, thanks for the mention - even if my appearance in your clickstream was mystical or magical or something - and I'm doubly happy since I don't have any lime mint yet and there are links here! I'm off to shop too. Thanks petite tête de choux for the list.
  20. You absolutely have to heat the stone! If you don't, the inside will be undercooked and mushy, just as described here. Try preheating the stone at least 30 min at 500-500 and then bake the pizza at 450+.
  21. Too much stuff on top? Too thick of crust + a lot of stuff on top? Try the same recipe and such, make a thinnish crust and dress it very lightly. What happens?
  22. Fresh bay is sweeter than dried, with warm spicy flavors reminiscent of vanilla and nutmeg. Dried, not so much. I use fresh in sweets: creme brulee, pumpkin tarts, infused cream for whipping. Fresh bay is also subtle in savory dishes so you can do things like infuse the butter/cream for mashed potatoes with it. As for oregano, I grow my own. Next to the sweet bay tree. You city-dwellers could put the tree in a pot and the oregano at its feet. We spent a summer picking the best strands of oregano out of the garden and propagating it into a meter square patch. It was a tough job, but someone had to eat it. While I dry enough to get me through the freezy months, and it is okay, I am a snob who eschews dried herbs in general. Even homegrown ones. Joesan, I am curious about the dried wild oregano you get. Do you know what it looks like in flower? There are many "oreganos" out there, it's one big cross-breeding party!
  23. No, but now that you have thought of it, I may have to. (where is the damned "drooling" smilie???) This has become one of my go-to appetizer/potluck dishes. The components (bread, cheesecake, chutney) end up getting swapped in with other dishes too, which is always amusing. I knew this was a great thing the first time I took one to a party (sleepover Saturnalia bash at a friend's B&B) and could overhear "OMG! Have you tried the chutney with that?" and, in response, "...and the cheesecake with that...!" from the next room. (I have no idea what they were pointing at, but I swear that many a combination was tried and they were mostly very, very good...) In theory, this is a 20-24 serving recipe - in my experience, if you have up to a dozen people it will disappear without anyone feeling cheated. With more people than that, I'd make extra. Let me know how the mushrooms turn out.
  24. I regularly make one based on the Oregon Blue Cheesecake from the Northwest Best Places cookbook. Rough recipe: 1 lb cream cheese 1/2 lb blue cheese 6 oz sour cream (laughably, I use Tillamook low fat) 1/4 cup flour 1/4 tsp salt 1/4 cup chives or 1/2 cup scallions, chopped 1-2 tsp fresh herbs, finely chopped - I use thyme (2tsp) or rosemary (1 tsp) or whatever strikes my fancy. 1 cup ground crackers, nuts, etc - Goldfish work, as do hazelnuts, and lots of things in between. Depends on your audience. This is divided and half is sprinkled on the buttered pan, the other half on top of the unbaked cheesecake. The original recipe uses cheese crackers on the bottom and walnuts on top. I vary this along with the herbs. Butter 9-10 springform or tart pan and sprinkle with half of the ground crunchy stuff. Mix rest of ingredients until smooth. This is easiest using a mixer, although you can do it by hand or pulse the mixture briefly in food processor. Pour into prepared pan. Bake at 325 for ~45 min, until set. Cool to room temp and refrigerate for at least 6 hours. I usually serve this with baguettes (usually Pain la Ancienne) and this wonderful Blueberry Habanero Chutney that I've always got on hand.
  25. How about a wood-fired brick oven in my yard and I'll teach them to make bread using it. Then when they decide thats too much hassle, I'll have an oven and they can buy my bread. Seriously, are they planning to learn or is this an academic question?
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