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John S.

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Everything posted by John S.

  1. That offers a funny mental picture! What I like about brussel sprouts on the stalk is that they stay fresh for so long in the fridge. The damnest part is bagging them in then produce aisle. We'll be having some today! Happy Thanksgiving, all. JohnS.
  2. That doesn't look like it to me. Huitlacoche just isn't any old fungus on an ear of corn. It has to be cultivated. It is sold in cans (inferior) or frozen by mail order (superior). Getting it fresh is almost impossible unless you live near a grower who does this. I recently tried to get some frozen but there is a minimum order and I would not be able to use that much ( I think it was 10 pounds) so I'm still looking. I have had it at cetain Mexican places (Bayliss, Mark Miller) and it imparts an interesting flavor. It's subtle (like putting an avocado leaf in a tamale) but prized. Good luck! Here is a quote from a web site I found. The link follows the quote. snip The fungus is produced by removing the tassels of sweet corn plants before they shed pollen, and then inoculating the silks of the corn with spores of the huitlacoche fungus. The procedure causes the ear to produce "corn mushrooms" instead of kernels. The mushrooms are considered a gourmet delicacy and can be sold fresh for $5 per ear at the farmers' market. It also is being sold through local Mexican groceries and restaurants. snip http://ola.wkkf.org/fsrd/newsletter/routes29/ John S.
  3. BKF has oxalic acid as its mechanism and is not abrasive, so it won't scratch. I saved an All-Clad saucepan using BKF. It was almost black in some places purple in most others due to not putting water in it prior to using under a double boiler. I wondered why the chocolate wasn't melting and that's why. Almost threw it away but now is one of my favorite pans. I would not want to try anything else since I like BKF so much.
  4. Actually a restaurant nearby (or chain..? Left at Albequerque) used to make deep-fried habs stuffed with 3 kinds of cheese. Some chile aioli adorned the plate with the word "HOT". (They discontinued them due to lack of sales and even though they were 2.50 four or five years ago and the kitchen crew probably complained.) A friend and I each ordered one and after my bite I was displaying all the symptoms. But after his first bite he looked at me as if I were a crybaby. Until his second bite. His first bite was away from the placenta. Then it was my turn to laugh! John S.
  5. That's one of the reasons I love chiles so much - the color. As for de-pithing the small, hot ones, I use a tapered (serrated near the tip) grapefruit spoon. John S.
  6. I usually use a cream cheese mixed with herbs or a flavored cream cheese with herbs. Congratulations on your crop. Mine is terrible! I wish you were close - I would take some off your hands. I also do this with rocotos/manzanos and they are very good. Like Maher said, clean 'em out first! Good luck, John
  7. I have read all the replies and most are helpful. I would encourage a dilute clorox spray to sit for awhile on both sides. Also, The kind of wood does matter. What wood is your Boos? My mom had a salad bowl that she alwayd rubbed garlic into prior to making a salad in it. I still have it 40 years later (she died 20 years ago). I still use it when I want a garlic flavor. But is it teakwood. Some other wooden bowls and boards are so porous that they get fungus which turns black. Clorox does not help these. I toss them just because I don't like the black color. My two cents! John S.
  8. John S.

    DIY Taco Stand

    Great photos all... I found a definition of al pastor HERE, but not the history.
  9. John S.

    DIY Taco Stand

    These are soft tacos with two small corn tortillas steamed in a push-steamer, then filled with whatever meat you want: pollo, carnitas, al carbon, cabeza, lengua, al pastor, cesos (don't ask) etc. Never cheese, always cilantro and sauteed onions and a sauce (I always get the chile de arbol). In San Jose they are everyehere. The only tricks are: each meat has its own cooking base and herbs. Also to get the proper texture on the torillas, you need to quick-steam. They are usually 1.50 per pop. El Grullense its the local mega-copropation stand. I am also certain they exist all the way down the coast. As you noted, easy to make at home.
  10. Hey Stacy - I'm your foodsoulmate and have tried them all. Portion control is *almost* everything. WW is NOT slow-going if I may say so. You can lose many pounds on WW in six months - say 52. But if you walk everyday (or 5 times per week) or whatever gets your heart up to an aerobic level you can get it up to 65-70 pounds lost in the same 6 months, improving your CV system to boot. Weight Watchers is misleading (last time I checked) in that it says you can eat anything you want, just not as much as the good-for-you stuff. You just basically have to adapt your food preferences to those with more nutrition per calorie. You know that when you eat fiber-laden foods, then you can tolerate more calories. When you eat fat-laden foods, then you tolerate less. There is no magic bullet. I still think WW is the best system around, especially if you become active in the online stuff and really learn about food relationships. One last note: I always hated tofu. But now I love it. Thanks to marination and baking, tofu is a perfect source of the macronutrients. There is a great thread here which explains how to make it so you don't have to spend a fortune at your locan health food store.....
  11. ← I just called them. My question since they seem to recognized by their great tortillas, was: do they use nixtamal or masteca to make them. The answer: NIXTAMAL !!! I'm going soon. They seem creative and authentic. John
  12. Up here in the South Bay Area there is a renowned shop similar to what you are trying to do. It's called Burrito Real (Rengstorrf in Mountain View), and has multiple options for meat, beans, rice and extras. They do excellent business and have desserts, aguas frescas and fresh salsas. They had one other shop in Campbell fold because of bad location. Chipotle as you know is owned by McDonalds, has limited offerings and is too expensive. You can get the same prices as they if you offer more variety, and if your location is good. Good luck!
  13. John S.


    There are few American varieties with the same ingredients. They should be milk, culture and that's it. On the various ingredient lists in USA there are many other adulterants. Lets say you get European yogurts with only those ingredients. There still are variables in production like the fat content (like chefcrash said) - the higher fat the creamier- how long the milk was kept up to temp, at what temp was it innoculated and at what temp did they begin incubation. My results are best when I don't keep it at temp (around 195F) over 6-7 minutes. Then, I cool in an ice bath and innoculate as close to 95F as possible, using an organic starter with the main 4 or 5 active cultures (like Horizon). Then I start incubation immediately. Then, the longer it incubates the less creamy it is. I use a bouble boiler so as not to scorch. For such a simple process it sure in complicated.
  14. Hey alanamoana, I'm glad this thread is reactivating. As I live so close to you and some others, and I have read the previous posts, let me chime in again? The BBQ place Andy's has moved as samgiovese has said, to the ECR. But the best BBQ around is in Mountain View. Uncle Franks, Old Middlefield Way just off Rengstorrf. I posted the info earlier. His web site is still under construction. Genny mentioned Mexico Lindo, and I'm sure I have been there but can't remember where it is! I need to look it up! She also mentioned Japanese. There is a famous Japanese restaurant in Japan named Ringer Hut. (Any help from the Japan members?) There is only one USA franchise: in San Jose on Saratoga, just south of Williams. Totally authentic, it is full usually. It is openened many hours and has super noodles. Like Nagasaki Champon. We have yet to exhaust their menu. Oh, and I have to update my favorite Indian: It is Flavors. Opened four months, it is on El Camino, Mountain View (but just at the Sunnyvale border) next to an Indian grocery, just south of Grape Ave. The best. Great buffet, mixing many different Indian styles. On weekends, for 2 bucks more, there is a brunch (11:30 AM) with even more selections. Check it out. John
  15. That's the exact same pan my mom has used all these years. She makes her pork roast and sauerkraut in it. It's also held the Thanksgiving turkey more than once. Thanks, andie for posting this link! ← Toliver, I have been thinking that for a long time (more since this thread appeared). My mom also did all of her turkeys (T-Giving and Christmas) in one of those. I have similar ones in my camping gear. Whay do I discount them for kitchen use ??? I have Kitchen Aid and Calphalon roasters..... Why ???
  16. In the seventies, I spent three winters in a row at Eilson AFB in Fairbanks. We put in our order before we flew back to Southern California and as we were loading the planes, it was delivered. They were large boxes of 20 pounds, frozen, very inexpensive. One time they brought us snow crab by mistake. But I just would boil them in the shell a little bit (the king crab was red - forget what the snow crab looked like) and we would have a party after returning, eating it with maybe just a little dipping sauce. It was so sweet. The best crab (maybe seafood) I ever ate!
  17. We have a tree in the back yard. They are sweeter than the Eurekas that are common around here and have a thinner skin. A wonderful fact (for me at least) is that the skin is edible, just like a kumquat. If I were to substitue I would use, as Smith and Russ recommend, another citrus juice to bring it close to the tart lemon flavor.
  18. yes, it's just oxalic acid - a bleach.
  19. That's a good one! I have the reverse problem when I travel to Manhattan to visit my daughter! To you both, I guess the three of us (and one or two others I have heard from here) live very close together. I grew up in Santa Clara and Buy Th Bucket (I could swear it's "Buy" but maybe not anymore...) moved fifteen or so years ago about seventy feet to where it is now. This is a modern building but the old building had much more character. Back 35 years ago a friend who lived a few doors away from my family would take a few friends over there for free food. He knew the owner. Catfish was a specialty. I agree with you both that this place is a treasure chest of so many excellent small and medium sized ethnic restaurant. We are very lucky. I rarely go to an American place anymore (like Kirks) or to chain restaurants. The White person, like myself, is a minority here as you know, which is OK with me. For instance the guy who owns my favorite liquor store is Indian. I take him hot chiles when they ripen and his wife makes me jars of habanero pickle with some of them. Welcome to the neighborhood Alanamoana and enjoy! John S.
  20. I like beets like c. bear, but also the garnet sweet potatoes. I quickly spray with Pam olive oil and sea salt, as you said. Never tried plantain, but I will now!
  21. Hi Alana - I live right here Bollinger near Lawrence Expy. I have a vast array of places I like. Here is a quick rundown of my favorites by cuisine: Indian (Northern): Amber (Santana Row), Bombay Oven (great lunch buffet, Cupertino, Stevens Creek Bl.), Taj India (El Camino, Sunntvale), Empress of India (back of strip mall on 3426 El Camino, Santa Clara - great spicy homemade food, small buffet - call for hours 296-0717. see reviews at http://www.jatbar.com/detail.asp?num=417), Sue's in Palo Alto (excellent) Indian (Southern): I like the vendor inside of Bahrat Bazaar (Reed near Lawrence Expy Santa Clara), Udupi Palace (veggie, El Camino Sunnyvale) Thai: Krung Thai (Winchester at Moorpark, San Jose), any of the Thai Chile Cuisines (Bascom in SJ or Halford off El Camino Sunnyvale/Santa Clara border) or Thai Peppers, Dusita (El Camino Santa Clara) Felafel: Did you mean Felafel's Drive in on San Carlos (becomes Stevens Creek west of 880) just East of the 880 undercrossing? If not try it - it's the best felafel around. Mexican: My favorite is Estrellita on San Antonio just off El Camino in Los Altos, regional (multiple daily specials for lunch AND dinner, a Chiapas family), Consuelo's (Santana Row), and Fiesta del Mar in Mountain View. Malaysian and Indonesian: Layang Layang (De Anza, Cupertino) and Banana Leaf (Milpitas). Chinese: Tao Tao (Murphy Ave., Sunnyvale), Chef Chu's (Los Altos, corner San Antonio and El Camino, two or three doors down from Estrellita), Mandarin Gourmet (De Anza Bl., Cupertino) Barbecue: Uncle Franks (Old Middlefield Way, Mountain View) Good luck!
  22. They are useful in the kitchen but I always find myself using a heavy stockpot. I find myself using my dutch ovens when I camp or when I go on river trips. They are NOT LC Dutch ovens, just the inexpensive 60.00 large cast iron ones. I use them for desserts like upside down cakes. You put them on coals and cover the tops with coals also, giving a consistent baking temp everywhere. The only expensive thing similar I use is a French oven - basically a roaster. John S.
  23. That's OK. Bottom line is that an aluminum/stainless clad pot or pan will melt on high over an electric burner (I did that too). You have to have food in it to avoid that. The food or liquid dissipates the heat and the thermal energy escapes in that way. Bring it on up to high, just make sure something's in there!
  24. I understand. But the pot looked ruined in my case. My point was that you won't ruin your frying pan at the higher temps All-Clad warns against. Did you answer your own question?
  25. My experience is that on the stove they burn faster because the heat source is right there. In an oven you have more time to do other things because they roast slower. <It's easy to see with pine nuts.> The pecans and walnuts roast the same, it's just harder to see. So i put all nuts under the broiler, but place the cookie sheet low.
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