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Everything posted by jsmeeker

  1. Thanks for the additional tips. Wild Willy's is a place that turned up while I was doing independent research. I want to give Strip T's a try. Maybe Summer Shack, then one of the pubs/bars scargo recommended (Deep Ellum or Publick House). It's a work trip and I am not alone. Also, one night is blocked out for a dinner that the client/vendor is arranging. Still leaves a few nights to fill, but I have plenty to pick from. I'll be sure to report back on where I wind up.
  2. I've got a nice bottle of rye. Will pour one tonight.
  3. jsmeeker

    Steven Shaw

    Wow. How terrible. I am proud I was a part of what he created and feel fortunate to have met him and even cooked with him.
  4. I'll check it out. I was in Cambridge last year for a long weekend (3 days, two nights) Ate at Craigie on Main one night. Had a great lunch at S&D Oyster in South End one day. Not totally sure what I'll be able to do on a work trip. I know it's not too far into Cambridge from where I am, but I usually don't like to do too much driving after work. (really a training class in Watertown, so we are done at a reasonable time)
  5. Will be in the Boston area (area west of Boston) next week for a work trip. Need some recommendations for dinner. Like local places. Like seafood. Not totally sure if I will have lots of time to get in closer to Boston and Cambridge and the like.
  6. Try Mughlai in far north Dallas, near the Galleria mall http://mughlaidallas.com
  7. Thanks for these suggestions. J Sheekey is a place I found while researching some other places. Seems part of a large restaurant group. May be a little spend for a post theater meal, but we'll still keep it in mind. Thanks for the other suggestions too, especially on Indian. I DO have plans for an Oyster card. Actually, a friend of mine is mailing me two of them from when he and his wife took a trip to London earlier this summer. They are setup as PAYG and have a few pounds on them. My understanding is that the PAYG cards cap at a max per day that is the same as you would pay on a travel card.
  8. Another vote for Noosa. It's not the thick Greek style that's gotten so popular recently, but it's super smooth and creamy. Love that stuff.
  9. I made a pumpkin pie for thanksgiving. But when I was at the store, I was only able to find the larger 30 ounce can. Enough to make two pies. But I only wanted one. So, now I am stuck with some leftover puree. I don't want to make another pie. If I had a way to roll out pasta dough, I think I would make some ravioli or something. But I don't and don't want to go buy some gadget to do this. Is there a way to use it in a different way with pasta? Really, I am leaning towards savory . But would be OK with something baked/sweet.
  10. A few weeks ago, I got my annual fix. Tasted like I remembered it. I still get a kick out of all the outrage over this sandwich. Every year it is reappears, you see the media stir up the pot by telling us how bad it is, showing us pictures that are supposed to make us shudder in fear. I mean, really? Is a frozen McRib patty and more scary looking than the frozen hamburger patties that McDonalds slings out every day all year long?
  11. I'm going to London the first time ever the week after next. I'm getting totally overwhelmed by restaurants and places to eat. Day time will be filled with typical sight seeing. Not sure how muchI can plan lunches. Will probably mostly "wing it" and figure out something based on where we happened to be when we get hungry. Don't really want to go far out of the way to get food. Really, for now, mostly looking for dinner spots. We'll be staying in in Mayfair (JW Marriott Grosvenor House to be exact). So, places in and around that area that are a convenient walk are ideal. Mostly, looking for more casual spots. Mayfair seems to be packed to the gills with the high end fancy places. I like those places, but just can't eat at them every night. Also, one night we are going to see a show (Book of Mormon). We'll probably be hungry after the show. So, something fairly convenient to the Prince of Wales theater would be good. Don't want American chains. Though I would be OK with some small local London/UK chains. A good "curry house" or Indian place would be nice some time. Oh. And what about a place for Sunday Roast? That doesn't have to be a casual place. Might make for a nice last final day in London before flying back home the next morning.
  12. Just got back from another weekend in the Central Texas area where I once again had a lot of BBQ. The lineup Louie Mueller Barbecue in Taylor, TX John Mueller Meat Company in Austin, TX La Barbecue in Austin, TX Franklin Barbecue in Austin, TX Mickelthwait Craft Meats in Austin, TX Kreuz Market, Lockhart, TX Note that 4 of the 6 spots are in Austin city limits. There is a very strong link between several of these spots. The Mueller family. This legendary family of Texas BBQ has great influence. And it's turning out great BBQ. With the legend of Louie Mueller and his son Bobby, come Bobby's children John and LeAnn. John has had his ups and downs. Worked for his sister at a south 1st Street trailer named JMueller BBQ. But then there was a blow up. John got fired. LeAnn pressed on and re-named the join La Barbecue and soldiered on. It's cranking out seriously good BBQ. John got back on his feet and now has another trailer on the east side of town. He knows how to cook BBQ, no question. North of the capitol buliding is Stiles Switch (not visited this trip, but I made it there last year). The pitmaster there used to work for Louise Mueller in Taylor. This place takes a slightly different tack. Not in a trailer. And there is no queing for hours and running out of meat. But it still makes tasty BBQ, served up with a nice selection of Texas craft brews. And then there is the new king of Texas BBQ. A one time employee of John Mueller. Started with a small little white and aqua trailer parked at an old gas station just off I-35. There was buzz. People lined up. A brick and mortar store on 11th St., a short walk from the Capitol building, opened. More people came. There were longer lines. I visted the place and had great BBQ. We were even the first in line on our first visit. The national press started to get wind of it. Bon Appetit called it "The best BBQ in America" . Then later included it in the list of "The 20 most important restuarnts in America". Anthony Bourdain showed up and featured it in his TV show. It made him change his mind about where the best BBQ was to be had. Is Franklin Barbecue everything people say it is? In a word, Yes. Yes it is. I've visted it three times over three years. Every time I have been, it's been outstanding. It's the finest example of Central Texas BBQ there is. It's brisket cooked in the most perfect way possible. This most recent visit, I arrived at few minutes past 9:00 AM. There were probablly 30-40 people ahead of us in line. The place opens at 11:00 AM. We didn't place our order and get our meat until about noon. Three hours for something that has four ingredients, if you count the smoke. And really, I think you have to. This is BBQ, afterall. Not roast beef. Austin is where it's at. Franklin is the best in the state. Close on it's heels is La Barbecue. John Mueller Meat Company is very strong. Right there, that is three. Lockhart, the town most famous for BBQ, has three. Has ben that way a long time, but will probably always be just three. But Austin isn't done. Stiles Switch does a nice job. And then there is the newbie in the bunch. Just a few blocks east of Franklin sits Mickelthwait Craft Meats. Yet another little trailer on a plot of empty lot. Small. Quaint. Not busy at all when we walked there after inhaling a large tray of meat from BBQ. This place has a lot of potential too. Many great spots within a few miles of the dome of the capitol building. And this may be just the begining. Like any other type of restaurant, people leave to start there own place. We've already seen it with these places. I think it will continue. Can't wait to see what's going on down there this time next year. Will I feel compelled to drive all the way to Lockhart? I dunno.. Not sure if I see the need.
  13. I hope they will carry this size in Dallas. I have bought the one liter bottle before. it was awesome. Of course, I was forced to have several glasses of this stuff on the rocks. Not that that is a bad thing. But getting it in a smaller bottle would be nice.
  14. After watching the most recent episode of Top Chef, I am thinking about one of my favorite foods again. Fried Chicken. The show featured some bad stuff.. Tom got mad at so many contestants botching what he felt was a simple challenge. Along the way, I saw and read stuff about fried chicken methods. In his blog entry on the show, Tom suggested a few things. One was to remove the skin. I find this to be odd. The other suggestion is to fry twice. This is something I wonder about. But he didn't go into details. Nothing about temps or times. Nothing about wether it was a deep fry or a shallow pan fry. Need to re-read through this thread to see what others may have done. Anyone else taking another look at this delicious food?
  15. I'm intrigued my Tom's method for fried chicken. Remove the skin?? Really? And fry it twice. need more details. Especially on temp of oil, type of fry (deep fry? pan fry?) and the size of chicken (this is important and ties into oil temp)
  16. Dunno why, but last night's elimination competition really bored me. But I liked the quickfire. I love oysters.
  17. I received a Peugot pepper mill and a copy of Michael Ruhlman's "Ratio" book.
  18. Chocoflan whole Cut into a slice The center of the cake wasn't baked enough. You can see the flan at the tip is runny. Also, I think there might have been too thick of a layer of cajeta. Still, this was a big hit.
  19. It's out of the oven. It's cooling now. I'll photograph tomorrow when I invert it onto a platter, removing it from the pan. That's when the "magic" reveals itself. I've done this before and it WORKED! But to be honest, I can't recall if I made it a day in advance or the same day. I'll have to park it in the fridge until it's close to time to serve it because of the custard/flan part. I'm slightly worried it might have issues un-molding. But I've made creme caramels before and they stay in the fridge until service and they un-mold just fine.
  20. Will make a Chocoflan (AKA "Impossible Cake") later tonight. Will be dessert for Christmas dinner. Using Rick Bayless' recipe for it.
  21. You can certainly crack the glass on the door. Been there, done that.
  22. Thanks! That is the one I wound up making. It's sitting in the fridge right now. I want to to age at least a day. This came out pretty well. Has all the right flavor without the heaviness and richness of a more common eggnog. Of course, the problem with that is I like the richness and some heaviness in an egg nog. Not as thick as you get in a common commercial brand, but I think I really prefer a home made cooked custard style better.
  23. Thanks! That is the one I wound up making. It's sitting in the fridge right now. I want to to age at least a day.
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