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Everything posted by HungryC

  1. Oh, so only CERTAIN stereotyping is abhorrent. Can you please skip the rural-south-Walmart-shopper bashing? The largest US retailer sells organics, lactose free milk, and the same bougie Greek yogurt as Whole Foods or Fresh Market. Some shoppers would rather keep the sales tax revenue at home, in our obviously pathetic-to-you, "rural" communities. Overgeneralization is at the heart of prejudice on all fronts. We dismiss, or worse, actively dislike, the very things we find unfamiliar. It's basic human nature, and it requires self awareness to overcome.
  2. I dislike sugar substitutes, as some trigger my migranes and others taste like horrible bitter poison (or what I'd imagine horrible bitter poisons taste like). I like brown sugar in my lemonade, rather than white table sugar. I also find that introducing another flavor (like fresh ginger, mint, or strawberry) allows me to reduce the sugar needed. Try honey as a less-processed sweetening alternative.
  3. HungryC

    Stringy Okra

    Wow, 20 cm is WAY too big for my taste. The larger the okra pods, the better the chance it will be stringy. I like the baby pods and generally pick 'em at 3" or so (no bigger than 10 cm at a maximum). Always feel the pods before purchasing--bend the pointy end. If it feels hard, the okra will be stringy/woody. If it is still flexible & supple, the okra will be tender. When the weather heats up, okra grows very quickly. It can go from being 'baby' sized to giant and fibrous in a matter of days.
  4. If they're willing to go 50-something, I'm there. Substitute pork fat for butter, and I've got 40 covered...AND a full head of natural, silvery, kinky/nappy hair.
  5. Am I the only person who thought, well duh, when I heard that a 60 something woman from the Deep South had used the n word? I assure you, it is still used by plenty of people on both sides of the color line, in the south and elsewhere. In fact, in certain circles, it's used more than ever since we elected a black president. Savvy PR could have pulled her out of this, but failing to appear on the Today show and that video piece just made it all worse.
  6. A number of items packed in oil have a clear notation on the nutrition panel: "drained" or similar language, to indicate that the packing oil is not included in the calorie count. I'd think that the watery stuff in canned veg & beans adds a trivial amount to the calorie count.
  7. Southern style sausage corn muffins....savory, sweet, & protein all in one. Use whole wheat flour along w/the cornmeal, and they'll be whole grain too. Make layered yogurt parfaits--cut up fruit, nuts, a layer of yogurt---in lidded cups. People can take one and run. Whole fruit--bananas, washed apples and pears--are good for grab-n-go, and they keep well for later-in-the-day snacks.
  8. HungryC

    Egg Rings

    Will you be baking your own English muffins? If so, the same round rings used for your EMs will make the perfect, round egg patty. They're made of metal and cost just a couple $ each: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/shop/items/english-muffin-and-crumpet-rings A tuna can, ends and label removed, well washed, might give you the same effect for free.
  9. HungryC

    Homemade Pam

    The OP doesn't like the "funny stuff" in Pam spray, which means she's objecting to the petroleum components of propane and isobutane. Which means that BHT (or its cousin, BHA) are probably just as objectionable. BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene) & BHA do prevent rancidity, but they're retained in the food, as opposed to the propane & isobutane's dissipation (both are gases at room & cooking temps). BHT/BHA are petroleum-derived products, just like the propane & isobutane. Ain't nothing natural 'bout any of that stuff, even if it is in the Laurel's Kitchen book. Me, I use a little butter in the pan to cook my eggs. Sometimes I use bacon grease. I'd rather have saturated fat than petroleum by-products in my food.
  10. --shrimp remoulade or chilled crab louis served on butter lettuce leaves, cheddar biscuits, strawberry shortcakes, lemonade or herbal iced tea --spring rolls, vietnamese chilled noodle bowls (bun) topped with chargrilled chicken or pork, goi ga (chicken & cabbage & herbs) salad, viet-style iced coffee w/condensed milk
  11. I too prefer the flat or paddle style grater over a box grater. It is easily held at an angle over a plate, laid across a bowl, or held over a place to grate a finishing sprinkle of cheese over. Easier to wash, too.
  12. Sandor Katz, The Art of Fermentation....if you're seriously interested in creating carbonation through natural fermentation (as opposed to making flavored syrups to mix with carbonated water). He discusses naturally fermented ginger beer, root beer, sweet potato fly, and offers a couple of pages of inventive soda flavors (p 164-165).
  13. I have no answers for any of the questions you posed, but do have a marketing suggestion: look for small to medium sized caterers as potential customers. Often, they don't have the prep space to do pastry and thus may be interested in your bakery's services. See if your state restaurant association has an annual food show or expo.
  14. Count me as a kamado fan. It can do everything a pellet grill does, plus more. Can't do a near-neapolitan pizza w/a pellet grill, or use it as a wok stove.
  15. RE: bread machines, they are frequently very cheaply priced at thrift stores. But I wouldn't pay any amount for one if I were in the position to economize on food. You can bake great bread with your own two hands, no need to spend any of your food budget on an electrical appliance. Try Nick Malgieri's recipe for rosemary focaccia: it stirs together in a bowl, has a relatively short rise, and is foolproof. No kneading required. Thick enough to split for sandwiches, and it can be cut into portions and frozen for later use.
  16. I do what he does, and I sometimes use leftover rice from a takeout chinese binge. But you need to add beans-n-rice to the list. NOLA style red beans, charro beans (pintos), blackeyed peas, lentils, white/navy beans, dried favas: best protein bang for your buck in the entire supermarket. Dried bean cookery requires initial prep work, then lots of slow, low-attention-required simmering, perfect for those AMs or afternoons when you're stuck at home reading, grading, writing, etc. Legumes are your friends.
  17. I'm thinking of dried mushroom powder, dried powdered shallots, and similar substances used in cooked dishes, and a mixed herb/spice blend as a "sprinkle". Some of the sensory pleasure of salting food is the flavor contrast produced between salted exterior and less salted interior. Using an herb or spice blend as a table condiment might increase the enjoyment factor and return some feeling of control to the diner....he/she can't have a saltshaker, but can shake a non-salt spice blend w/abandon.
  18. Seems like a shaping issue to me. Make the depression deeper and the dough at the bottom of the depression thinner. It won't (shouldn't?) pop up if it is thinner and weighted down by the filling.
  19. If PF Chang's posted nutritional info on its menus, it probably would have far fewer customers. Seriously, everything is loaded with sodium. Read 'em and weep: http://www.pfchangs.com/menu/nutritionalinfo.aspx
  20. Now THAT'S a brave one. I'll cop to craving Sonic tater tots.
  21. Kenji over at Slice did exactly this, but I can't seem to find the comparison right now. Here is the comparison on steel vs. stone: http://slice.seriouseats.com/archives/2012/09/the-pizza-lab-the-baking-steel-delivers.html Maybe someone else can dig up the 1/4 inch vs 1/2 inch comparison....
  22. I have only purchased a single cookbook in e-format. I like to annotate my cookbooks, and if there is an easy way to mark up/make notes in e-books, I haven't found it. So I'm still buying physical cookbooks.
  23. Find your local used bookstore(s). Cookbooks are frequently given as gifts and end up at used bookstores. You can spend pennies on the dollar and build up a nice collection in no time. Use Amazon or Good Reads to figure out which editions have legitimate changes and which are simply minor retools. Also use your local library's cookbook collection as a research tool--before you buy, check it out or request it through Interlibrary Loan (free). You can cook out of it for a few weeks before deciding to add it to your collection.
  24. Aluminum will transfer far less heat to the crust than cast iron, and cast iron is inferior to steel. Thus the baking steel.
  25. Suvir Saran's American Masala is a nice book with lots of US meets India flavors.
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