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Ktepi

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  1. Ktepi

    Dinner! 2009

    Somehow it isn't surprising that eGullet's resident master of egg porn is just as much a master of marrow porn. That looks fantastic, percyn. I swear I did not realize that I was making dressed-up pork and beans until plating: The pork belly was roasted on a rack over white beans and sauteed onions in a sauce of mostly stock, sherry vinegar, and brown butter solids (this was a "using up what's in the fridge" dinner), with the pork's spice rub (red chile -- not much, this isn't a noticeably spicy dish -- thyme, allspice, and dry mustard) used to season the sauce as well. After roasting, the pork was braised with the onions and beans while I cooked the buttermilk biscuit. This is one of those meals that makes me really wish I weren't out of cigars.
  2. Ktepi

    Keeping things simple

    Strained unsweetened yogurt topped with diced Meyer lemon and a little sugar. A frequent breakfast lately.
  3. One of the reasons I picked it up was because I'd been in many Indian markets before and had never seen this -- and scouring shelves for sodas is something I do. (And I do it automatically in Indian markets because I love Thums-Up.) So for all I know, it's the Moxie of India, hated by most but beloved by the few who've acquired a taste for it. Or it tastes better with a lime or something.
  4. For years -- through several moves -- I kept a jar that was impervious to any attempt to open it. I don't even remember now what it was, strangely -- I did finally get rid of it. I know it was from an international market and that I hadn't had it before, which was why I'd bought it. The lid (it was a glass jar with a thin metal lid) had no lip, but didn't appear to be threaded either. There was nothing for a can opener to catch onto and since the lid had clearly been separate from the jar itself at some point in their respective lives, a can opener seemed the wrong route anyway. But it wouldn't twist, it wouldn't pop off, and it gave no indication that it was supposed to do either. The only thing that kept me from breaking it open was the worry that I might end up with tiny glass shards in my food, unnoticed until the moment when they shredded my insides or something. Oh hell, I just remembered my biggest food regret. Nevermind the peanut butter. Spiced masala soda. I'm sure there are people who grow up with it and love it. I love Moxie and am well aware that most don't. So it's cool. I'm not condemning the thing. But my God. I saw "spiced soda" and thought I might be dealing with something like Dr Pepper, maybe some kind of ginger ale, that sort of thing. But when I opened it, the first thing I smelled was cumin -- like opening a packet of taco seasoning when you've forgotten to shake it down to the bottom of the packet and a little winds up on the floor. I tasted it anyway. I'd bought it, I'd opened it, and I knew there was no point in telling this story later if I weren't willing to taste it, and it was as salty as that taco seasoning too. I'm sure it wasn't really, I'm sure the salt level was moderate, but having grown up with Moxie instead of spiced masala soda, my expectation of saltiness in sodapop was ... well, about as low as you can get. Zero. Less than zero. Saltiness would show up nowhere in that segment of Family Feud, even after encountering the cumin. I had bought three bottles originally, because that's what I do with previously unheard-of sodas -- that way if I love it, I've still got another one for later, and another one for somebody else to try. It's a number that works out well. This was nearly three years ago. The other two bottles are on my bookshelf as we speak, and they're only there in case anyone ever dares doubt me.
  5. I love peanut butter. Cooking with it, baking with it, putting it on toast or fresh homemade biscuits -- it resumed being a staple for me shortly after college, when I discovered brands less sweet than what I grew up with. In grad school I packed a lot of duck-and-peanut-butter-and-pepper-jelly sandwiches vaguely inspired by Susan Spicer. So by extension, I loved P.B. Loco when I discovered it and its neat little flavors -- the cinnamon-raisin especially, but I wasn't disappointed by the sun-dried tomato, the curry, etc. So when I heard about a gourmet peanut butter in flavors like dried cherry, chocolate and pretzel, mango, etc., I ordered some as a reward for a new contract and pay raise. It's terrible. The chalky, pasty texture is like bad health food store peanut butter, or my own misguided efforts at making peanut butter in a coffee grinder. At room temperature it has the consistency of poi with chunks of peanut, and doesn't spread so much as ooze -- refrigerated, it's too hard to spread. The peanut taste is almost entirely missing from the chocolate and pretzel spread, which is a blessing since in the others the peanuts are bitter, stale, like the ones you lost in the pantry for a couple years. This pay raise meant a lot of increased spending like this, so I told myself that if I had to regret anything, at least I was only regretting $30 on peanut butter and not my new health plan. But man, it's still sitting in my fridge months later, untouched.
  6. Bitters are on my mind too. On top of that I have a bottle of "whatever I feel like putting in it" citrus liqueur that started with Seville and clementine rind, wound up with some Meyer lemon zest and passion fruit, and that I think I will just continue to put bits and pieces of zest into as each new citrus fruit comes into season. Maybe I'll wind up with the alcoholic version of Five Alive. It's not bergamot-related and I'm sure I said so in another thread, but I love Seville juice in sours. Bourbon, rye, or good rum, sometimes a little bitters in there too. Even if I didn't make marmalade, I'd pick up Seville oranges just for sours.
  7. Just bumping this to note that Rising C Ranches has their bergamot in season again -- mine came this morning (bright and early), along with a box of rangpur limes. I'm wondering how bergamot would go with cachaca, specifically the Boca Loca that NH just started carrying and that I fell in love with at first sip -- so some combination is on the docket for this weekend.
  8. I have -- but I simmered the stock for a full hour, too, which is what I do with shrimp heads. I thought the warning about 15 minutes was only for fish, not shellfish, but I'm sure someone has an authoritative answer and explanation. Anyway, I can't compare the reduced stock side by side with the initial stock, but I felt I had to reduce it because the only pot I could fit the lobsters in and cover was ... the lobster pot. The amount of stock I wound up with ... if I didn't reduce it, I would have tossed most of it out. Reduced, it was stronger than I would want in a soup/chowder/etc, but good as the basis for a sauce.
  9. It really works. The lobster flavor isn't covered up, and it doesn't have that vibe a lot of post-Thanksgiving recipes have, where turkey is just shoehorned into something for the sake of using up turkey. That was the problem I ran into when I started using up leftover lobster (lobster has been as cheap as pork chops for the last couple months, around here). I'm sure you could sub lobster for shrimp in a lot of other recipes that call for cooked shrimp, of course. If it's the grits your husband doesn't like, you could make it with rice or egg noodles?
  10. I've been making lobster and grits a lot: Saute diced onion, celery, and bell pepper in a lot of butter (half a stick to a stick, depending on how much lobster you have), without browning. Stir in a little flour, add lobster stock or water, and simmer until thickened but still very buttery. Season with a liberal amount of Old Bay, a little sriracha, and half a lemon's worth of juice. Add chopped lobster and stir until coated and warmed through. Serve over grits, or alongside awendaw.
  11. A caipirinha-like, sour-like, drink of diced Meyer lemon muddled with demerara sugar, with Wasmund's single-malt whiskey, turned out to be fantastic last night. It happened to be the only whiskey I had in the house, and I decided to go that route instead of the traditional whiskey sour.
  12. Hoppin John, with black-eyed peas that I grew on my deck even though nobody local thought they'd grow up here, and country ham that I cured myself. Had to buy the rice, though.
  13. Ktepi

    Obscene Sandwich

    I think virtually everything from this thread in the Pennsylvania forum qualifies: Hoagies, Cheesesteaks, Pork Italiano, Show us whatcha got.. It's ridiculous the number of times I've stopped what I'm doing to make a sandwich -- I work at home, my lunch plans are always flexible -- because of some lust instilled by a new post to that thread.
  14. Ktepi

    Obscene Sandwich

    Cut off one end of a "demi-baguette" from the supermarket and hollow it out. Fill with peeled boiled shrimp. Holding the sandwich upright, carefully pour in a sauce of melted butter, a little demiglace, Worcestershire sauce, Louisiana hot sauce, and a little whiskey. Eat promptly, with napkins in reach.
  15. What I did this year -- and I don't measure, per se, or keep track of recipes, so I can only tell you what I actually did -- Fill a 5-quart crockpot with an assortment of peeled, cored apples. Leave it on low overnight. Add more peeled, cored apples to fill the space the overnight cooking made available, and turn it to high for a couple hours until they've broken down too. Add two bottles of good beer -- I used a bottle of Harpoon's IPA and a bottle of Dogfish Head's Indian Brown Ale. Add two small seedless or de-seeded oranges, ground up. Add several cups of sugar, probably 3. Continue cooking on high, uncovered, until it's dark and sticky, stirring first to incorporate the beer and later to keep it cooking evenly. This was made as a change of pace from regular apple butter, since I had a whole bunch of apples to use up and still had some apple butter left from last year.
  16. In 2009, I will eat food, mostly plants, not too much. I will make chocolate-free coffee brownies using Caffe Acapella's coffee-bean bars; homemade cola to be proud of; another home-cured country ham; various things combining coffee and orange flavors; as many tomato sandwiches and tomato pies as I can stand as soon as they're back in season. I will teach my Alton Brown obsessed nephew that there's more than one right way to cook anything.
  17. Mine's the 2007. I just tried them both straight, and although the Angostura is more bitter, Fee Bros is still pronounced. And yeah, definitely clovey, some good spice in there.
  18. Oh, it's not a bad thing! It might make them a more specific bitters, less universally compatible, but that's true for grapefruit bitters too, in my experience. I've been using them more or less the way I'd use Angostura, or Fee's barrel-aged. Definitely good with rum, which may partly be because I use rum in my pain perdu.
  19. I keep adjusting things back and forth because I didn't actually measure anything at the start, and it's mostly about wanting to get the balance of spice right relative to the amount of bitterness, but these are great bitters. I'm still really weirded out by how clearly the toast comes through -- I don't know, I guess having made so many fruit infusions and how little flavor you get from an apple compared to an orange, I'd become focused on oily things as sources of flavor. Speaking of which, I got fifteen pounds of Seville oranges yesterday, so although they will see many uses -- the first thing I did was juice one and add sugar, rhum agricole, and a little cinnamon/spice -- I'm definitely going to make some orange bitters.
  20. Pomegranate is perfect for this. You can nearly fill the 500ml canister, use one CO2 cartridge, leave it for a few hours, and it's very very fizzy.
  21. Ktepi

    Beef Cheeks

    I have beef cheek chili cooking at the moment, the first thing I've made with beef cheeks. I'm hoping for a chili that's really beefy to stand up to the amount of spice, and so far it looks like I'm going to get it. The cheeks simmered in stock in the crockpot overnight (I'm new to crockpots too), and now I've added chopped sirloin steak tips, the chili seasonings, and a can of Ro-Tel tomatoes. (Why am I making this the day before Thanksgiving? So that it'll rest in the fridge and let the flavors develop, and then there'll be easy-to-reheat leftovers that aren't turkey or turkey-related.)
  22. Ktepi

    Deviled Ham

    I have a home-cured country ham hanging from the loft upstairs, and now I'm definitely going to devil some of it. In the meantime, though, I just bought my first can of Underwood deviled ham.
  23. Sounds good! Thanks for the input. I can get some corn meal and sorghum with the money I save over Anson Mills.
  24. The New Hampshire liquor stores just started carrying the 18-year Sazerac and the Thomas Handy Saz. If either of them have filtered down to my local store in time, that's my Repeal Day celebration right there.
  25. Ktepi

    Keeping things simple

    Pimento cheese sandwich. Tomato sandwich, when in season. Roasted pineapple. Radishes and butter.
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