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  1. My favorite right now is Arami on Chicago, just east of Damen in Ukrainian Village. Its owned by the same people as Mirai on Division and Damen, but its a little bit less traditional, more creative. Easy trip from downtown hotels. You can take the blue line out to the damen stop and walk or short cab to either one. Cocktails at the Violet Hour, little snack at Big Star....
  2. Arborio rice does go rancid much more quickly than other rices. Keep it in an air tight container, in a dark cabinet and use within a year.
  3. I didn't even know it was possible to make 2 hour risotto. I use arborio rice, my 14 inch all-clad skillet and make 20 minute risotto all the time. If your stock was hot, maybe it was bad rice or maybe your heat wasn't high enough. I have also found that you don't have to stir constantly. A good stir when you put in each ladle full you can putz around the kitchen attending other things, feeding a toddler, etc. and stir it every so often and it turns out just fine, do change in creaminess or anything disernable. Good luck. Don't give up.
  4. I think they changed the recipe. Added more HFCS and other sweeteners. I agree with you. But I don't think they used to be that sweet.
  5. My Father-in-Law, bless his soul, is the fun combo of health conscience and cheap, as well as a good sprinkling of a love of 1950's cuisine, and all things italian-american. As a good old fashioned 2nd generation Italian American, its all gravy and noodles to him. He actually thinks every single restaurant he's been to in Italy is bad. Here's a couple examples... 1. Homemade chicken noodle soup. Go to the discount grocery store and pick up the cheapest whole chicken they have, bring home, put the whole chicken in the biggest pot you own and fill it all the way to the top with water. No carrots, onions, celery, herbs or seasonings necesssary. Boil, not simmer. Boil for about 8 hours, so you make sure you get every last yummy drop of chickenness out of that poor bird. Take out chicken. Remove meat and return to pot with the celery, onions, carrots and noodles. No salt, we're concerned with high blood pressure. As soon as the noodles are cooked, serve. So the veg is still nice and al dente. 2. He went to Costco and bought a whole beef tenderloin, this is going to be good I thought. I watched him pull out the handy dandy probe themometer I bought him for Christmas the year before (safety first! Don't want a chance of getting triginosis) He sticks the sucker on the grill, turns it every so often until the themometer went off. He then waited the obligitory 10 minutes, maybe he's learning I thought. He then cut it into portions, determined it was too rare (really it wasn't, it was perfect) and then put it in a pan and stuck it under the broiler in the oven for 20 minutes, until it was all........very, very well done. 3. My first holiday away from my family. No mom's stuffing. No Uncle Bruce's oyster stuffing. No perfectly cooked juicy turkey. No Grandma's cranberry salads. None of the things that make it a holiday. I'll survive. So down to Florida we go. Oh, you want to go play a couple holes of golf while the turkey's in the oven? Sounds great. They do live on a golf course, and the course was closed for the holiday and all the neighbors were sneaking out for a couple holes..... 18 holes later. The turkey was very, very well done. Oh, how juicy and wonderful this turkey is, my mother-in-law commented. Husband and I quietly ate the dark meat that wasn't complete charcoal. This is only coupled with this past thanksgiving, where they came to visit us in Chicago as I had recently given birth. My brother is in Culinary School. He and I consulted on the menu well before I went into labor. The fresh turkey was ordered. We were going to have everything that made it a holiday (see above). The turkey was divine. The sides were fabulous. Grandma's cranberry salads went over great. Then it was time to put away the left overs. Father-in-law took charge of carving up the remains of the bird. Now the in-laws are big white meat people, its healthier you know. So Father-in-law is carving up the bird. Gets all the white meat in the tupper ware, and we've already discussed how my culinary student brother was coming over on saturday to make the stock, goes to put the rest of the carcass in the big ol' freezer bag. With all the remaining dark meat on it.... Husband, bless his soul, had stoffers frozen lasagna in his freezer when I met him, says "dad, we want that meat" He now assists in Lasagna Sundays where we make a mess of lasagnas with homemade bolognese, homemade spinach noodles, and a nice bechemel. With a freezer full of lasagnas, somehow they never get pulled out when the in-laws are visiting. Husband decided he was going to perfect his minestrone recipe this winter. The first experiement he called his wonderful ol' Nonna. Nonna? Whats in your minestrone? "well you start with a can of Cambell's Tomato Soup...." He stopped writing.
  6. Thanks for the links! I'll check them out. Liking the 9 month session Genisis has vs. the 17 weeks with Simply Wisconsin.
  7. Can anyone recommend a CSA that delivers or has a pick up location near Wicker Park/Bucktown? I've been doing Homegrown Wisconsin, but they moved the pick up location for next summer on me, so I wanted to see what the other options are out there. Year round, seasonal, whatever. Where are you getting your veggies, etc?
  8. Bill Nieman is all about the goats these days. BN Ranch is what its marketed under. He no longer has control over his pork/beef thats marketed under Nieman. I can see goat being big just because of his reputation.
  9. Bayless is a personal friend of the Obamas, fwiw.
  10. Argentineans do make ham and cheese and humita(corn and white sauce) empanadas and some seafood and stronger cheese but of course they all are savoury. Although Argentineans also make a kind of quick fried pockets filled with quince paste or other sweet pastes. These pockets resemble the federal star of eight points rather than an empanada. ← The Argentinian sweet empanada like things are called pastelitos. There are three versions, quince membrillo, sweet potato membrillo, and dulce de leche. Each has a specific fold so you know which one they are. Almost won ton wrappers, fried, covered with thick simple syrup. OMG.... I remember my host sister making them every weekend morning to sell to pay for her quinto ano class trip to Bariloche. She would always set aside a plate for me for when I returned from the boliches after the sun came up.
  11. Poffertjes

    Dinner! 2008

    Not only are your morels beautiful but the pasta looks really toothsome. I think the spore must have been in the planting mix, but two weeks ago I spied a morel amongst the annuals. It was not as dark as I have seen photos of and I have never seen any other than dried, but when I snapped it off the fragrance was heavenly. I was too afraid to eat it because I know that some poisonous plants mimic o.k. plants, but if that is the morel scent then I need to check this thing out. ← No poisonous mushroom looks like a Morel. Thats why non-professionals feel safe shroom hunting and eating. Next time fry that sucker up in some butter and enjoy.
  12. The Amana Colonies are between Grinnell and CR. They'll have some good meat markets, its an old German enclave. If you head over to Central College in Pella, they have two meat markets and two bakeries (Dutch) on the square, and its about 30 minutes from Grinnell. As far as cocktails? Wowee... I can't think of any place special...
  13. I always enjoyed this recipe... http://www.etiquettegrrls.com/pages/feature_recipe.html I've added dried jalepenos from the garden, a fantastic touch.
  14. Spring serves at the bar, and the bartenders are top notch. Plus its around the corner from the Violet Hour if you need another drink.
  15. Recommendations would be much appreciated by me too. My In-laws live in Naples full time and if I have to keep going to a "we found this great italian restaurant" - Maggianos or "we found this great chinese restaurant" - P.F. Chang's. I'm going to scream. Or ending up on 5th at 5:30 during high season with an infant and a two hour wait. What are some good, reliable restaurants, besides the Turtle Club's grouper sandwich or salad?
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