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eGullet Society staff emeritus
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Everything posted by jsmeeker

  1. I would love to get a Vitamix. But that is not gonna happen. What I DO NOT need i more wooden spoons or spatulas. Nor do I need any more kitchen towels. I always thought you can never have enough of those. But I think I do. I really don't need any small gadgets. Except a new potato masher. I could use that.
  2. Work is taking me to Cincinnati next week and more than likely many trips after next year through a lot of 2012. I'll be staying in/near the University of Cincinnati. That seems like it's "downtown"/central city. What's GOOD to eat in Cincinnati? I hoping for something better than Skyline Chili. Chili in spaghetti is just all sorts of wrong to this Texas resident.
  3. Don't forget to check out the really awesome topic on Latkes in the Cooking subforum.
  4. Very crack like!! In the glazed pecan topic, people were concerned with glazed pecans that would get sticky and chewy instead of having a hard glaze. I didn't have that issue, though it's not too humid here in Dallas in the winter time.
  5. Made a small batch of spicy glazed pecans over the weekend. I used to make these every year with my mom many years ago. I didn't have the recipe for it, but had a general memory on how to do it. I poked around the internet and then here. I found this topic on Glazed Pecans and knew I was on the right track. Make a hot sugar syrup in a big pot, season it as desired, toss in pecans and stir them up and cook for a minute or two. Then dump onto sheet pan with a silpat and slip into a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes or so. Here is my recipe. Measurements are a best guess 2 oz water 3 oz sugar 3/4 tsp. cayenne pepper 1/4 tsp. smoked paprika pinch salt 1.5 cups raw pecan halves. Comine sugar and water in sauce pan. Bring to boil to dissolve sugar. Add spices and sugar. Swirl pan to combine. Cook until mixture begins to get syrupy. Add pecans. stir to combine and coat, and continue to stir for about a minute. Dump coated pecans onto silpat lined sheet pan (I'm sure parchment would be fine, too), spreading them out to form a single layer. Slip into 350 degree oven. Bake for about 10 minutes. Keep an eye on them. When they start to bubble, given them a stir. Keep them in a single layer. Don't let them burn. When they look toasty, remove them from the oven. I then given them a final stir and re-spread them on the pan. Let cool. You can them take them off the pan. You can knock loose excess glaze coating. Tasty.. and super addictive. I need to buy more pecans and make more.
  6. Stumbled upon this elsewhere. Thought i would share it here. Lots of good food scenes here. http://www.slate.com/blogs/browbeat/2011/11/24/_feast_a_beautiful_video_essay_about_cooking.html?fb_ref=sm_fb_like_chunky&fb_source=home_multiline
  7. I'm a little reluctant to suggest this place as my most recent experience wasn't so hot. But you could take them to Hard Eight BBQ in Coppel. It's by no means great BBQ, but it's the "best" option that is really close to DFW airport.
  8. Yes.. There is a difference in taste between the cheap store brands, the more expensive organic store brands, and other premium brands (organize or not) that are sold by lots of retailers. The cheap store brands just don't taste as rich. Though I do buy them regularly due to cost.
  9. I think the anti-beans in chili comments came from the customers.The Texans. They know what they are talking about. The chefs simply catered to the tastes of the region. Smart.
  10. Noilly Pratt Sweet vermouth Noilly Pratt dry vermouth Titos Vodka Jim Beam Black
  11. This seems like a good short and sweet summary. The idea is to do a more traditional type of travel show. Do things that are easily accessible to regular normal people. A lot of what Tony does in No Reservations is pretty "extreme". So, now, you get Rick Steves or Samantha Brown, but with the normal does of Tony Bourdain snark.
  12. Team Moto gets broken up. Wasn't expecting that. When the teams described their chills, we never found out anything about the chile component. WTF is up with that? Just the way they edited the show? Yes, chili doesn't take all night to cook. Dunno why they were cooking all night. Also, while I've never had it, I don't think I would like brisket in chili. It would get stringy if braised/stewed for a long time. That texture is all wrong. Surprised a few teams went crazy to buy all the brisket at Whole Foods.
  13. The "in the shower" mac and cheese was on the lunch menu. We did have some tasty 2 for 1 specialty cocktails in the lounge side of the 'outdoor' seating early Friday evening. Since I don't know what it was like before, it's hard to say if it went downhill, but I think it's clear SOMETHING changed.
  14. back from Las Vegas.. I'll give a quick rundown of my meals. Lotus of Siam (off strip) - proceeded there directly from the airport after arriving late Friday morning. Seated in the new expanded section. I don't really know Thai food well, nor do the friends I was there with, but everything was really good. Except for the sausage i ordered off of the northern Thai menu. Very dry. too bad. I was hoping it was going to be good. Aureole (Mandalay Bay) - A little disappointing. this place is gigantic, and was pretty busy on Friday night. Aftter descending the the stair case aroundthe wine tower, we were promptly seated. And then had a LONG wait before a head waiter finally appeared. We wound up ordering the Parellel tasting menu. Four courses, each course with two preperations based around a flavor. The flavors were Pineapple, Carrot, Lamb, and Peach. After ordering service got better, but was simply "robotic" and fairly cool. Wine pairings were delivered with good timing, except for the last one with dessert. Food was OK. Nothing great. We all remarked that our previous fancy meal at Mandalay Bay when we dined at Mix was more memorable. I am beginning to question why I keep ordering tasting menus. RM Seafood (Mandalay Bay) -- Went here for lunch Saturday afternoon. Sat downstairs this time. (upstairs is once again closed, FWIW). Had a plate of really great oysters. And some stone crab claws. Then a catfish sloppy joe sandwich. That was really good. The housemade potato chips were excellent. Just perfectly made. All washed down nicely with a glass fo Stella Artois. Comme Ca (Cosmopolitan) -- Best meal of the trip. Situated on the third level of the resort with a tiny footprint, we had a really great view of the Las Vegas strip. Table way in the back puts us right next to the window and the small balcony/patio. Good service. Great cocktails. I had good steak tartare and a nice roast chicken. Two friends split the special of the day. A large Beef Wellington. Really good. Another friend had steak frites. Also good. Cereamy smooth chocolate pot de creme for dessert. Everything really clicked here. Big thumbs up to this place. Fleur (Mandalay Bay) -- Another disappointment. this time, it was because the lunch menu presented was totally different than what is show on the web. The concept is supposed to be tapas/small plates. But it was essentially a bunch of sandwiches with just a small number of "tapas" type dishes as appetizers. My tuna tacos were good, but the sandwich was just a sandwich. Dunno what was going on, Maybe a very recent change? Maybe they can't sell the tapas to the convention goers at lunch time? I dunno. Really, was bummed out about this.. Japonias (Mirage) -- Picked this palce because we were in town in Decemeber a few years ago, staying at The Mirage and never got to eat in the actual dining room like we had expected to. The main dining room was CLOSED during that time (common at that time of the year) and we were seated in the lounge. While the lounge is a nice place for drinks, it's not the place to have a real meal. Limited menu. low cocktail tables. It was a bummer. But a friend really wanted to try the place for real, and this trip was the time to do it. Dined here Sunday night. I thought it was pretty decent. Very attentive, friendly sevice. Maybe even a little TOO attentive. Food was good. Nothing spectacular, but we were glad we got to finally eat there for real.
  15. No Fatburger in Dallas. Though I've heard rumors they may be on the way. (I've never had one) But we now have In-n-Out, so it changes things a lot. They immediately leap to the top of the heap in the true fast food burger category.
  16. This burger is the new, standard burger. I had one shortly after they were introudcued. In the past, I always thought Wendy's was the best out of the major three players (McDonalds, Burger King, and Wendy's). After trying the "Hot n' Juicy", I still feel they are better than McDonalds and Burger King.
  17. Off to Las Vegas tomorrow. Gonna be there three nights. Already have two dinners planned. Friday night at Aureole (Mandalay Bay) and Saturday night at Comme Ca (Cosmopolitan). We'll "wing it" for Sunday night. Other than that, the only for sure place to try is Fleur at Mandalay Bay. That will be a lunch. (We are staying at MB)
  18. I'm glad I checked out Cosmo within the first 6 months of it opening. Had a great experience there. Too bad they don't know how to run a hotel, though. Hearing they still have issues there. But the rest? Good stuff.. Too bad it can't last. MGM is an obvious buyer. They can easily suck it into City Center. Wynn won't buy he. He's a developer. That's what he really loves and does.
  19. Well, with only couple of nights, there will always be a great meal that you will miss. You can't help it. So many good places in town.. I think Valentino is a good pick. If you want to venture out of there, I think you would like Sage at Aria. Ross and I ate there in 2010 when we were in town for Uncork'd. I don't recall any new wave frothy stuff there.
  20. I suspect they will have to dismiss a lot of people in short order. Even with the standard number of contestants, it's hard to keep tabs on who is who in the early rounds.
  21. I got my fix yesterday.
  22. If they do brisket, they need to get Aaron Franklin from Austin to judge. OF course, everyone will LOSE compared to his stuff. They really can't do it anyway.. They won't give them enough time, But hopefully we see a lot of beef. We love the beef here in Texas. One thing new is that it is not one city. It's three. And they are starting with way more contestants.
  23. Anyone have some good LATE NIGHT suggestions? Talking mid-night'ish here? Preferably on the south end down near Mandalay Bay. I know every place has a 24/7 "Cofee Shop". Just wondering what else is out there and which of those "coffee shop places are better than others.
  24. A weekday should be less crowded than a weekend. At least, it usually is. Oh...And if you do have time to sneak away for adult time, go to the Cosmopolitans for cocktails. Lots of great stuff going on there.
  25. You couldn't pay me to go to Las Vegas at NYE. Well, actually, you probably could..
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