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Everything posted by muichoi

  1. But what's wrong with it? how many humans do you think have fatty livers, particularly Egullet participators?
  2. Foie Gras production is already, ridiculously, illegal in the UK. Intensive rearing of birds for this is as undesirable as any other intensive rearing, but properly raised Foie Gras is not remotely cruel.
  3. That's an awful new thing, the taking of coffee orders with pudding orders. I fear the incursion of the truly disgusting American habit of simultaneous ingestion.
  4. I think people like food that comes from a recognisable tradition and doesn't try to be original-I certainly do, and think it a way forward for gastronomy. Most classic dishes are simply not available in really top-class renditions in London, and people rightly love them, particularly those who enjoy good wine, which doesn't go terribly well with more modern styles. I would accept that the level of execution here is not currently as high as it needs to be.
  5. I mostly agree, but its very ordinariness is the point, which would only be justified by completely immaculate execution, which is pretty hard to deliver consistently.
  6. As always, she's just a terrible, terrible cook, frightened of flavour and always finding the most cumbersome way of doing anything. It's ridiculous to think that using these stupid products saves time-just learn to cook instead. I'm sure she's a nice lady, though.
  7. I must admit that I'd feel like a cheapskate taking up this offer, paerticularly since in so many cases the normally available lunch menu isn't much more.
  8. Lunch today was not bad-a herb omelette the interior of which was as it should be, but whose exterior seemed to have been steamed-no colouring, no butter, unattractive, then rump of beef(I asked for it blue, which is how you get medium rare in most London places) with a very precise red wine gravy, excellent chips(bravo!) and delicious though over and unevenly dressed watercress. The beef was good but parsimoniously served. Pudding was rather dry almond cake with blood oranges, and a (separate)lovely scoop of rhubarb sorbet.Expensive for what it is but has many attractive aspects.
  9. Thanks for a brilliant and fascinating report. I shall try a combination of torching and lye water at the weekend. How much lye did you use?
  10. Me too-er, baking powder is different to baking soda!
  11. Don't forget chinese cinnamon is cassia, the outer bark. I make up the mix to my taste, adding a little dried sand ginger. It loses freshness very fast, so i pound very small amounts by hand when needed. Much better than the commercial powder.
  12. I've always found the diminution of flavour on freezing so great that I don't bother.
  13. Malcolm, several butchers have them, including Harrods! I buy mine from Theobalds in Holborn usually.
  14. That's why I mentioned the French Label Rouge birds, which typically sell for £6-7. One used to find them at Waitrose, Sainsbury and Tesco. They are infinitely superior to , for example, the Waitrose 'poulet d'or' at twice the price.
  15. Exactly. An organic label is meaningless as far as quality goes, and in the case of some things-cheese comes to mind-is to be avoided.
  16. Why has no one noted the passing of the best alternative? the splendid and inexpensive French Label Rouge birds that were at one time widely available. I do buy these at some independents, and also like the excellent Label Anglais birds, but supermarket birds are uniformly awful, particularly the terrible Sheepdrove, revoltingly breast-heavy in the worst british manner. I would no more buy a battery hen than use flora margarine, and never have.
  17. A fair point..unfortunately I've disposed of my copies of works by both authors. I do recall such things as recipes for beef with oyster sauce, in which a pound of sliced beef is chucked into the wok after a couple of aromatics and a little oil, then seasoned with oyster sauce. Just try it! I will revert later with other examples as you're right that I shouldn't condemn without going into detail. The Yan recipes I've seen are more riffs on vaguely oriental ingredients than genuine Chinese recipes.
  18. Max, as someone experienced in chinese cooking of course you can make the Lo recipes work, and he writes interestingly, but if beginners follow the recipes they don't work. His translations have too much adaptation to be useful to the experienced and not enough technique for the beginner. Mrs. Chiang's Szechwan cookbook is excellent, I agree. FWIW, Martin Yan's recipes don't work either IMHO.
  19. Duck fat is extremely healthy, I understand. Thanks everyone for this great thread. Of course traditional cookng does not deal in exact quantities, but in general it does deal with a very small repertoire. When those who cook everyday and care about food prepare only say 50-100 dishes in their lifetimes, great cooking happens! It's all about repetition.
  20. But bear in mind that Lo admits in his autobiography that he never actually cooked any of his recipes. It shows. They don't work. Irene Kuo's book is really fine.
  21. One of the finest of all Chinese cookbooks, and highly recommended to beginner and aficionado alike, sadly it doesn't seem to be available any longer.
  22. I have many hundreds of Chinese cookbooks. The best and most useful is Pei Mei's chinese cookbook vol. 1, and the standard of books published bilingually in HK and Taiwan is remarkably high. Nearly all the books published in the west overadapt or over simplify, but there's a lot to recommend in Yan-Kit So's Classic Food of China. I deplore the current gushing tendency of such very ungifted cooks as Kylie Kwong and Grace Young.
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