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Everything posted by Tsulli1

  1. Let's see here: -M Resort -Verizon -CraftSteak -TV Guide -Schwan's -Restaurant Depot -the aforementioned Toyota (Venza to be specific) I think Seattle's Best would be very disappointed if no one noted the coffee cups (perfectly angled for readability) in all of those closeup-transition shots at the house.
  2. Do you remember any show titles? I saw some of the Chef Jeff Project, and I've seen some of the PBS series Master Class at Johnson & Wales, but I suspect that isn't what you are referring to. Anyway, I'm just curious in case the show ever surfaces on Hulu or some such service. Are you referring to Cooking Under Fire?
  3. I believe it was Wolfgang Puck who made the babyfood comment.
  4. Thanks for putting this in my head. I almost couldn't watch last night. If "a little" was tied to a TC drinking game, I'd be dead of alcohol poisoning.
  5. It was out of 20. 35% was the winning score. I wonder if the age of the "Masters" vs typical Top Chef contestants played a roll in their ability to identify the various ingredients. I was really surprised when Bayless didn't get Mango.
  6. I didn't see Blais's comments on the Bravo site, help? Thanks! ← Blais said something during the show to the effect of: "Any Chef who feels the need to ask someone else to pronounce their name correctly deserves to have their name mis-pronounced." I believe the implication was that he knew how to pronounce Chiarello properly but purposely chose not to. Perhaps this was an attempt to "fail the test" so he wouldn't have to work with Chiarello. Sorry for you Chiarello lovers, I agree that Dale was out of line, but Chiarello showed his true colors last night. He's an arrogant prick any way you edit the tape.
  7. Tsulli1

    Fish and Seafood

    I've always thought that walleyed pike are so called because of the special character of their eyes. They reflect light and look like a moon and can be very striking. I imagine this name came to differentiate wall-eyed pike from northern pike, etc., through analogy with wall-eyed humans. It's a fine way to distinguish between northerns and walleyes. These are also the accepted local names where I've lived. ← I've always wondered about these names too. Here's the google results: Pike Perch (fish) Main any of several freshwater food and game fishes of the family Percidae (order Perciformes), found in Europe and North America. Although more elongated and slender than perches, pike perches have the two dorsal fins characteristic of the family. They are, like perches, carnivorous, and as adults they feed largely on other fishes. The North American pike perches include the walleye (S. vitreum), found in clear, cool lakes and rivers, and the sauger (S. canadense), found in lakes and rather silty rivers. Both are darkly mottled fishes native to eastern North America. The sauger, the smaller of the two, does not usually exceed a length and weight of about 30 cm and 1 kg. The walleye rarely weighs more than 4.5 kg and has a maximum length and weight of about 90 cm and 11 kg. http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/...h#ref=ref119873 Pike (Fish) Main any of several voracious freshwater fishes, family Esocidae, caught both commercially and for sport. They are recognized by the elongate body, small scales, long head, shovellike snout, and large mouth armed with strong teeth. The dorsal and anal fins are far back on the tail. The northern pike (Esox lucius; see photograph) of North America, Europe, and northern Asia has pale, bean-shaped spots on the body and lacks scales on the lower parts of the gill covers. It is a fairly common and prized game fish with a maximum size and weight of about 1.4 metres (4.5 feet) and 21 kilograms (46 pounds). The muskellunge and pickerel are North American pikes similar in habit to the northern pike. Solitary hunters, pikes, pickerel, and muskellunge lie motionless in the water or lurk in a clump of weeds. As the prey comes within reach, they make a sudden rapid lunge and seize it. They usually eat small fishes, insects, and aquatic invertebrates, but larger forms also take waterfowl and small mammals. They spawn in weedy shallows from late winter through spring. Pikes are of the order Salmoniformes. Wall-eyed pikes are not true pikes; they are members of the perch order (Perciformes). http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/...e#ref=ref223713
  8. Has anyone had any experience with these guys ? I guess I don't trust the e-bay "buyer feedback" feature. 100% positive seems too good to be true.
  9. One more perspective... I ate there last July and brought a small digital camera along. I hadn't practiced with it in low-light conditions, and it was not the best quality camera, especially without a flash. I asked before the meal if it was ok to take photos (without the flash of-course) and my waiter assured me that it was. I took a photo of each course (discreetly); I'm sure no other diners even noticed. In the end, I ended up with mostly blurry pictures (its very dark in there), and in the end, I think the camera was more of a hassle than anything. Good for pictures outside in the garden, but I now wish that I had put it away after that and just enjoyed my meal. BTW, It was one of the best meals that I've ever had... Enjoy!
  10. Best line from last week... Jeffrey Steingarten: "The Insalata Caprese was one of the worst things I’ve eaten in two or three years." Ouch. I think Marco looks like a 50-ish version of Heath Ledger.
  11. Tsulli1

    Food Mills

    I have the 13" Lacor. It works great, very sturdy and big enough for your needs. Comes with two blades, but I only ever use one. Its a little pricey but it takes a beating.
  12. This article describes the process.
  13. Regarding the Diet Coke ad: Chicago Tribune Food Blog
  14. From the Chicago Tribune's Food Blog "Or is it? In an email, Achatz told the Tribune that he saw the commercial and he thought it was funny: "It's great to be recognized in pop culture and I look forward to doing a Pepsi commercial with will.i.am." As for Colicchio? We called him and he quickly dismissed that crazy notion of ours, that the ad was directed at Alinea. In fact, he said he and Achatz had already had quite the laugh over it. "I have nothing but respect for Grant," he said. "He is that rare chef who creates high concept food and makes it taste delicious. If anything, [the ad] is aimed at people who try to imitate the kind of sophisticated food that Grant does." Colicchio said he pretty much just showed up on the set of the commercial and played his part then left. So, there you have it -- potential foodie scandal averted."
  15. I'm right there with you Reignking. Although I've been to a Colicchio restaurant and have been underwhelmed, I've been to Alinea and equally underwhelmed.... for a lot more money. I instantly recognized "The Squid" combined with "The Trapeze" when he said: "Shrimp Nest" Colicchio has repeatedly commented on Top Chef about presentations that are too "precious" for his tastes. Everyone has an opinion. Mine is that it was a funny commercial. Still hate Diet Coke.
  16. Chicago has at least 1 very, very good Ethiopian restaurant: Ethiopian Diamond Maybe more... not sure how big the ethiopian community is in Chicago. The injera bread (crepes) that you mention is fairly easy to make. They use a round electric skillet to cook the breads much like a pancake. I don't know how easy it is to find Teff though.
  17. How about Colicchio's Diet Coke commercial during the Oscar's last night? Swipe at Alinea?
  18. I would say the ability to do classics well is a major part of being a successful culinary student. The ability to improvise, create and interpret classics is a major part of being a successful chef.
  19. That's too cruel and overly simplistic. The fact is, a truly creative dish generally takes multiple iterations to get right. For instance, Wylie Dufresne took about a year to perfect the Eggs Benedict dish he serves at WD~50. At El Bulli, Ferran Adria takes half the year off to experiment with the dishes he'll be serving the following season at the restaurant.The format of Top Chef doesn't allow time for trial and error. The "one mistake and you're done" format does not encourage risk-taking. That doesn't mean the chefs on the show are incapable of it. They are playing intelligently within the rules. ← I disagree. Blais didn't need to take half a year off to be creative and successful with his dishes in almost every single episode last season. He just did it. So did Stephanie. For God's sake, I'm even longing for last season's evil Lisa to return at this point. At least she took some chances...
  20. To be fair, its easy to armchair quarterback. And they were told that they would be cooking for the chefs and their families, so you might have to take non-chefs and children part of the equation. I don't think for the guy it was a fat issue with the pork, it was more of a silverskin issue...which I can very much see the reverse of the situation in that context. As in, the judges saying to him "Why did you choose to leave the inedible silverskin on when you could just easily trim it off?" "I was trying to keep some of the beautiful fat on the meat." "Thats no excuse--you can always add fat later but serving silverskin is a huge no no." --or something like that. I suppose he guessed wrong in this case. Like I said, it's easy to sit and watch TV, but I bet it's a lot harder than it looks. ← You've got to remove the silverskin from a pork tenderloin. I think the mistake was choosing to serve the least flavorful cut of the entire pig when they had an entire pig to select from.
  21. Seems to be a blend of Iron Chef and Top Chef and the age-old "mystery basket" test. The first episode was a little awkward for my tastes, but I'll give it another shot. Anyone else see it?
  22. I see some of these points, but I still think this group just isn't all that talented this season. This is probably due to "casting" decisions by the producers to try to encourage conflict, drama and to develop more interesting inter-personal dynamics. They don't seem to be looking for the most highly skilled chefs to compete and unfortunately (for the producers) there isn't any interesting drama this season, so far. The one thing the contestants can never know is how well any other contestant is going to perform. That is the essence of competition and should be enough motivation to the contestants to try to blow the judges away every single time. I just can't believe, based on what I've seen, that any of them can possibly feel confident enough in their skills to "hold back" until the end. I don't think risk aversion is the issue; I just don't think this group can live up to the standards set by their predecessors.
  23. Anyone catch Padma's reference to the guest Chef's new series on Bravo? Here is what his website bio says: "Jean-Christophe signed a deal in 2008 with Mentorn USA for an exclusive series for BRAVO. "Chef Academy" is a nine part series that chronicles his move to Los Angeles as he opens a cooking school. Ten chefs with varying levels of cooking ability are set to be trained by Novelli, all of whom want to improve their skills, some to a professional standard. The series will be aired on US TV in early 2009." Could be interesting...
  24. Yeah. According to this interview, Batali missed a season. Since the interview is dated last summer, when the current episodes were taped, that's probably it. ← I would think there might also have been a perceived conflict of interest in this particular episode since Batali and (judge) Bastianich were business partners. But I suppose all of that stuff is worked out ahead of time.
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