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Everything posted by Jaymes

  1. Actually, that's quite possible. There most definitely are some remote locations in Alaska from which one indeed can see Russia. And I'm pretty sure your square foot isn't in the middle of downtown Anchorage. Perhaps you should investigate. Perhaps your square foot is laden with wild blueberries upon which you can munch as you gaze across the water at Russia.
  2. Jaymes


    What's the advantage of cooking them in a muffin pan over just cooking them on a sheet pan? That's always worked well enough for me that I've never seen any need to search for improvements. Also, the grease runs off. I'd think a muffin pan would hold the grease, like a loaf pan does for meatloaf. Much better to cook them on a sheet. No?
  3. I'd tell you, but I'm hopeful you'll just watch it. Great episode: http://www.bravotv.com/last-chance-kitchen/season-5/videos/lck-ep-10-breakfast-baby
  4. Instead picture a mini rolled haystack of shredded wheat that came out of a box with a photo of (for some reason) Niagara Falls. We never got sugar on it - although sometimes fresh fruit. I wasn't quite so draconian with my own kids but those revolting sugary cereals like Count Chocula were never allowed in our house.
  5. Don't you think that depends entirely on which cereal you choose? I can assure you that neither I and my siblings nor my own children ate a "handful of sugar."
  6. Totally understandable. You have the nightmare scenario of a bowl and spoon to wash. And for what? The twin poisons - dairy and gluten? Not to mention the inconvenience of having to actually sit down and eat. Of course, that is the perfect time to catch up on all the news in the morning paper. Oh wait...
  7. I don't think there's much of a chance this would work. Bottom line is that food has to taste good for the restaurant that produced it to be a success. And I don't think it's all that easy. For example, let's take one particular genre - say "Mexican." Even in a Mexican kitchen, full of experienced Mexican cooks/chefs with familiar recipes and ingredients, the quality of the dishes can vary widely enough that one restaurant will be successful while another will fail. What you are suggesting seems to me to be an "all things to all people" option. If I can't even count on every single Mexican restaurant, full of experienced, knowledgeable Mexican cooks in the kitchen, to always produce chiles rellenos that are good enough for me to love, think about, and order again, I certainly don't see how I could expect cooks less-trained and experienced in Mexican cuisine to do it.
  8. My son graduated from Wash U in St. Louis, so I've visited there often. And have had my share of St. Louis Slingers. Pretty fine eating. But it does remind me a lot of a favorite dish around our house - chili & eggs. Great combination, however you fix it.
  9. Kerry, that looks so so so good. I'll bet the aroma of that cooking spoke to a great many of your colleagues. When I was a kid, we lived in Germany. Many fond memories but one of the strongest was the aroma coming from the kitchen. We had a cook, Maria, who came in every day and, in those long, cold, dark winters, that aroma often originated from a one-pot meal bubbling and simmering in the oven. A favorite of mine then, and still today, is Rouladen, the classic rolled-meat dish. I'm sure you either know all about it, or could easily find a recipe on your own but, just in case there are others here that have never heard of it, here's a typical recipe: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/melissa-darabian/almost-my-grandmas-rouladen-recipe.html
  10. Which makes me think of one of my favorite wintertime dinner party meals - New England Boiled Dinner. Everything is in that pot - corned beef, vegetables, etc. I have an assortment of sauces ready - horseradish, assorted mustards - and some really good breads. That's it, and you're off to the table. Here's Emeril's recipe, which is basically exactly how everybody makes it, although there's not really much to it, if you buy one of the already-corned beef products. http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/emeril-lagasse/new-england-boiled-dinner-recipe.html If you corn your own beef, that's done way ahead of time, so nothing last-minute to take you away from your guests. For more casual winter dinner parties, you can't go wrong with a big pot of chili, and some cornbread. My best advice for hot weather entertaining is to divide and conquer. You say you're part of a couple. Can't one of you be outside with the cooker/grill/smoker while the other is finishing up the salad, bread, sides, inside? Also, when we're entertaining in the summer, we often come up with sides that can also be grilled outdoors - veggie k-bobs with squash, peppers, onions. And, at Thanksgiving, when turkeys are a loss-leader, I always bought a couple extra and asked the butcher to cut them in half. Entertaining in the summer was a breeze with one of those turkey halves smoked out on the grill. And I served it with some of those veggie skewers and a congealed cranberry and apple salad. Fish on the grill is quick and easy. In addition to veggie skewers cooked at the same time as the main, think in terms of veggie/side casseroles. Wonderful squash casseroles, and rice and broccoli, and other dishes that can be baked ahead of time. For salads, I usually put the dressing into the big salad bowl first, then onions and sliced fresh mushrooms, or anything else that I want to marinate for a while. Stick that whole bowl into your fridge, with everything else - lettuce, etc. - waiting all prepped and ready to go in plastic bags. Last minute - pull out bowl with dressing and onions and mushrooms, add greens, toss. I've lived in several really warm climates and really hated being stuck in a hot kitchen, so I know what you're going through. Not only is it unpleasant, but a hot oven can heat up the rest of your house. I often would bake a large ham the day before, then just heat up the individual slices to serve - either on grill outside, or in frypan, or under broiler. In keeping with summertime dinner party cook-it-in-the-backyard advice, I remember my number-one, very favorite "fancy" dinner party dish. Butterflied leg of lamb.
  11. How about a traditional New England boiled dinner? Corned beef, cabbage, carrots, turnips, potatoes... Sandwiches the next day. Here's Emeril's recipe. Looks pretty good. http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/emeril-lagasse/new-england-boiled-dinner-recipe.html
  12. Jaymes

    Time in Oaxaca

    Thanks for this. I'm really enjoying the information, and the photos. Wonderful. As for Mayordomo chocolate - I sure wish it were easier to get in the US. I haven't exactly spent countless hours and sleepless nights looking, but I have made an effort, and couldn't find it through any of my usual sources - like MexGrocer online, and the many Mexican markets here in Houston. I've found it for sale from individuals on ebay, but at quite a hefty premium. For years, I've dragged back several pounds each Mexico visit. It keeps in the freezer quite well. However, more recently, I have discovered the excellent stone-ground Mexican chocolate from Rancho Gordo, and no longer miss Mayordomo quite so much. http://www.ranchogordo.com/products/chocolate-stoneground-chocolate Most norteamericanos do use milk to mix their hot chocolate drinks, but I prefer water - at least I do so long as I have some whipped cream handy. That way, I can sip the strong dark chocolate up through the cool sweet cream. For me, it's the best of both worlds.
  13. I also thought it looked sorta fishy. But hard to tell, no?
  14. I'd like to know what that is right next to the cabbage.
  15. Amuses me to think that you found us while researching poptarts.
  16. I do still use that same basic recipe. Got it so many years ago and am still pretty happy with it. I will use chuck, but it's fatty, so tend to go for a leaner cut if I'm going to be serving the stew that night. If I'm making it ahead, and it has time to sit in the fridge and let the fat congeal so that I can remove it easily, I'll go with chuck. But I made this a lot in the days when I had a big family to feed so I'd often just use whatever beef was on sale.
  17. The first thing I thought of as the chefs were discussing the menu was that there is no dish on the planet more "manly" than big beef ribs. Never mind just throwing food, the judges could have actually gone into battle with those big rib bones. And regarding the fish... When we lived in Alaska, because of my husband's job, we had to attend a great many formal parties and functions. At every single one, on the hors d'oeuvres/buffet table, there were two whole fish - one salmon and one halibut. Yes, they were served with small cocktail forks and the idea was that you scraped off as much as you wanted and put it on your plate, or on a cracker if it was being served as an appetizer. But these two large whole fish were so ubiquitous that, as much as I love fish, I recall remarking to my husband that sometimes I felt like I was being entertained as though I were somebody's large house cat. This is what that whole salmon looked like: http://www.moreys.com/product/whole-smoked-wild-keta-salmon/
  18. I love love love stifado. And then after that I love it some more. That's my new suggestion. Stifado.
  19. Whereas I, for many years after seeing "The Big Chill," couldn't seem to get through a session in the kichen without at least humming a version of "Grapevine."
  20. Thrilled to see this topic re-emerge. It's such a wonderful soup - one of the world's great classic dishes. While Houston definitely isn't digging out of a two-foot snowfall, it did get pretty cold (for Houston) and wet here, and I naturally thought of pasta y fagioli, so made up a nice big pot. Pre-Rancho-Gordo, just used ordinary beans. Didn't think this delicious soup could get any better. But now, of course, with his marvelous beans, it has.
  21. How interesting. I just placed a large order from them. My father's 95th birthday is coming up & it's hard to get stuff for him. Doesn't need tchotchkes in his small room at the retirement home and recently he has developed diabetes, so most of the treats he likes are out. But the boy loves nuts. So I placed a big order just yesterday. And then I come here and read this. Doo dee doo dah...
  22. And the best borscht I ever had was at a small Russian restaurant right next to the Russian Embassy in Tokyo. So you never know.
  23. Wow. Brilliant. Sure could have used a few pair of those when I lived in central Alaska. They're such a terrific product that I'm having a hard time resisting ordering some, even though the likelihood that I'll have any use for them down here in southeast Texas is rather remote. I'll tell yew what - them smart folks is always thinkin'.
  24. Having lived for many years in various assorted versions of "electricity goes out" country (blizzards, ice storms, hurricanes, earthquakes, third-world unreliable electricity), here's a tip. When the electricity goes out, I'm sure everyone knows not to open your freezer in the hopes that perhaps the power will come back on before everything thaws. Sometimes, when it's bad enough, we leave town until the worst is over. When we come back, it's basically impossible to know if perhaps everything thawed, but refroze. Pre-outage, freeze some water in a small cup or glass. When it's frozen, put a penny on top of the ice. Then, when power comes back on, you can tell if it thawed enough for the penny to drop to the bottom of the glass.
  25. Jaymes


    So it seems I've already set up an account. And ordered a couple boxes of those mini-corndogs. As some folks here might know, I do a lot of cooking and babysitting for my grandchildren. On my list of responsibilities is after-school snacktime. One of those boxes will definitely come in handy for that. Of course, as long as I was at it, decided to try the crabcakes, scallops, shrimp scampi, broiled mixed vegetables... But lordy keep me away from the frozen English toffee bars...$6.99 for a box of twelve. If I remember correctly, I can clip through a whole box in just a day or two. http://www.schwans.com/products/product?id=53214&c1=9403
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