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Everything posted by rickster

  1. Especially when a lot of minestrones don't have pasta anyway. Maybe he needs to stick to critiquing French food.
  2. I sort of doubt it. It seemed like they were struggling to say anything negative about Kenny's dish.
  3. I've got to agree with Holly Moore's and CanadianBakin' approaches to this problem. Unless you're dealing with an ultra high end product that can sustain a very high shelf price (which does not sound like what this chain is looking for), I think the shipping and packaging expense will kill the margins, even if the logistics are possible. Also realize that you will have no control over the way the final product looks on the shelf/rack. I could see where shipping frozen might work, but this is still expensive, requires special handling and probably involves reformulating the product to avoid degradation.
  4. Well, as a n00b myself, I have found the IR thermometer much easier to use and have not noticed any problems with accuracy. I am using a Fahrenheit scaled one. I have just followed the chocolate suppliers recommended temperatures without adjustments. One problem I had with a digital probe type was a relatively slow reaction time in transmitting changes in temperature, which caused me problems. Maybe it was just the brand I was using. Also it is possible that my skills have improved coincidentally with the acquisition of the IR device. I should note I do not own this Grewling book, but do have the "pro" one. The only issues I've had is the relatively large quantities the recipes make, which are too large for an at home amateur.
  5. Totally agree on getting the IR thermometer. It completely revolutionized my chocolate making. On the Wedel chocolate being too thick, I know that it is not couverture quality chocolate, and even in Poland it is considered a mainstream, not premium chocolate. So I would guess it won't coat like a high end chocolate and adding cocoa butter may be the best solution. I buy Guittard by mail order and am very happy with it.
  6. Also a recipe in a book by Nick Malgieri called Great Italian Desserts. Not sure if it is still in print.
  7. Only speculation, but it seems like the buttercream suffered from something like oxidation, where the surface became lighter following prolonged contact with the air. I guess a question would be whether the scraped area became lighter once it was exposed for a while, or did it stay darker.
  8. This is a tough one. I was surprised to find out that Maille is owned by Unilever. My guess is that they decided to market a slightly different flavor profile for North Americans and don't want to confuse matters by allowing a different product with the same name to be sold in the US. My only thought would be to contact Unilever or get it shipped directly from Europe. There does seem to be a Maille mustard store in Paris, at least as of a few years ago.
  9. Dipped my toe into this book, which I received for Christmas, and tried one of the simpler recipes this past weekend - Cod with a parsley and breadcrumb crust. A total faliure and I tried it twice. Coating was oily and fell off the fish. I think the timing is off on the cooking, although the fish was done properly the second time I tried with the convection turned on.. I also wondered if there was a misprint in the recipe, as it called for the fish to be started with the breadcrumb side down in a pan on the top of the stove, and then transferred directly to the oven without turning. I would have probably flipped it and roasted it with the breadcrumbs on top which would have helped reduce the oiliness.
  10. I wonder if one of the problems amateur home bakers like me have with the butter fracturing is that the supermarket butter available to us might have a higher water content than the butter professional chefs use.
  11. I read once somewhere that the taste profiles of Pizza Hut and Domino's pizzas are designed to appeal to kids and young teens, which were their core consumers. This was one reason why the sauce was so sweet.
  12. I don't get the respect angle. I don't call the chairman or president of the company I work for Mr. Chairman or Mr. President, nor do the vast majority of people who work in business. Does that mean none of these people are respected? I think the usage is a holdover from Continental European custom and has percolated from the kitchen into general usage. I remember years ago seeing a Julia Child series with guest chefs, and she appended "Chef" to each of their first names, so it was "Chef Michael" "Chef Susan", etc. I thought it seemed a bit affected at the time.
  13. I had the same problem a couple of years ago doing truffles with various ganache fillings for Christmas and never figured out what was going on. So I'm not sure it's specifically related to the peanut butter fat issue, although there was fat in the chocolate and cream ganache I used .
  14. One book I haven't seen mentioned which I think is very good for French style cakes is The Art of The Cake, by Bugat and Healy. Not sure if it's still in print, but it's a pretty encyclopedic compendium of classic French patisserie style cakes. It does not get into pastries or cookies.
  15. I didn't see a problem with the mystery box concept. I liked it. I agree that the sous chef selection was terrible, as was the knifing of Kevin. There was no need to misdirect and embarass him for a split second of audience suspense..
  16. I find it hard to believe that Padma spontaneously dismissed Kevin. I might believe that the producers came up with the idea and decided not to tell the other judges.
  17. Article in today's NY Times about sous vide at home and testing the SousVide Supreme machine. Includes a quote from an egullet moderator. Unfortunately I can't get the link tto work.
  18. I've made the Mailenderli from one of his books (How to Bake?) and they were OK. I thought they were a little plain. Nothing stood out to make me want to make them again. Never tried the Basler ones since I am not a fan of the chocolate/spice combination.
  19. rickster

    Mince Pies

    I would second or third the advice to use a bottled mincemeat. I made it once from scratch, using a Nick Malgieri recipe and it turned out nothing like the versions everyone was used to and flopped as a result.
  20. I think what makes it American is the use of peanuts. I'm not an expert, but I can't think of seeing a traditional European confectionery or pastry that uses them.
  21. What I was thinking of for instance was that Spanish turron will shatter if you drop it on a counter. It looked like the Grewling torrone recipe was similar, since he suggests breaking it into pieces, not cutting it, as I recall. It seemed like the montelimar was soft enough to cut. Edited to add: I guess the Spanish turron I have had is the Alicante style
  22. Is the Grewling montelimar a hard nougat? I was looking to try making some torrone, but it seemed from the recipe in Grewling that his torrone recipe yielded a hard nougat, but the instructions on cutting the montelimar made it seem as if it might be softer. I was looking to make a torrone with a softer texture, similar to what you find commericially. I guess I could just cook it to 290F as an alternative.
  23. I can remembering reading a few years ago (it was probably here on egullet) an idea about adding potato to "save" soups that were accidently oversalted in the kitchen. Supposedly the potato soaks up some of the salt. Can't say I've tried it, but it might be better than adding the carrot.
  24. I think the editing was not at all clear on why Jen was sent home. In the broadcast, one of Jen's dishes was criticized as being too salty, one of Bryan's as being underseasoned, Michael had the runny egg and Kevin had the stringy beef. I thought the criticism was pretty balanced. Jen admittedly did not get praised as much as the other chefs. I would have concluded from the episode based on Tom's questioning that Jen got sent home because she confited the duck instead of grilling it as she planned and got marked down for not managing the grill properly. But then you read the blog and it indicates that both her dishes were substantially oversalted and Tom praises her for switching gears on the the duck preparation.
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