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Dave Weinstein

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Posts posted by Dave Weinstein

  1. So, I did discuss the matter with Sous Vide Supreme customer service.

    Our conversation went something like this...

    Me: So I'm not sure if this is serious...

    Them: We don't consider the plastic extending out beyond that acceptable.

    Me: (Blink)

    Them: We've shipped you a replacement unit. When it arrives, put the old unit in the box, attach the return shipping label, and call UPS to come pick it up.

    Me: (Blink)

    Them: And here is my personal phone number should you have any problems.

    Me: (Blink) (Blink)

    I love the machine -- it's been great fun to work with. And their customer service is deeply committed to making sure that you don't have any bad experiences.

    If you're on the fence, and you have the cash, I'd say go for it.

  2. So, for the first test run:

    I broke down a fresh free range Duck, and boned out the hindquarters. The breasts were sealed with orange oil and turbinado sugar, and the boneless hindquarters with truffle salt. The skin was left on

    Four packages were placed in the bath (having brought it to 63c), and cooked for just over three hours.

    I crisped the skins with a kitchen torch, and served the breasts on rice with a simple orange reduction, and the hindquarters on greens with a bit of balsamic vinegar.

    The meat was an even pale pink all the way through. The only problems I had were that I don't think I was quite agressive enough on the sugar with the breasts (Orange oil is bitter), and I could have been more creative with the hindquarters.

    Tonight, I'll be putting in four grass fed two inch short-ribs, each with fresh thyme and some home churned butter. I figure they'll be ready for dinner on Wednesday, but I haven't double-checked any charts.

    The machine works well, is easy to clean up after, and stores nicely. So far, no complaints. I did end up putting everything in the bath before turning the heat on, to make sure I had the right amount of water. I then removed the packages, dried them, and put them in the refridgerator while it came up to heat. I suspect this will be less necessary as I get used to it.

    And thanks to the Barnes & Noble "please, 25% off coupon on any one item in addition to the members price, just please buy something" email, my copy of "Under Pressure" should arrive sometime this week.

  3. We have the Zojirushi NS-VGC05.

    With our older Zojirushi (which, it should be noted, was not a MICOM), making a single cup in the 5 cup rice maker often resulted in a browning of the rice on the bottom. With the new one, it comes out perfectly.

    Also, the new machine explicitly allows mixed rice. I've added dried wild mushrooms for some dishes, and diced preserved lemon for lemon scented rice.

    For the record, our normal "go-to" rice is a good brown Jasmine.

  4. We've been using Zojirushi for years, and love them.

    We just replaced our aging 5 cup rice cooker with a 3 cup MICOM, because we normally make rice in smaller batches, and it does a better job at the one cup level. Very nice little cooker.

  5. For the boneless country style ribs, I will often marinate them in fish sauce, lemon grass, and sugar (or Splenda) for a day or so, and then cook them over indirect heat in a Weber at around 600 degrees. Makes great lemongrass roast pork.

    (Yes, it really does get around 600 degrees. Half the kettle is empty, and the other half is roaring when I start the cooking)

  6. I know you guys think this isn't an apt analogy (for reasons I frankly don't grasp), but there's no stated dress code for funerals. Everybody is just expected to know what's appropriate.

    There isn't a single "dress code" for funerals either.

    Don't believe me? Wear that nice suit as you hike through the back country to scatter a friends' ashes off a mountain.

    The dress code for funerals is driven by sub-culture, although most are fairly formal. However, the people coming to a funeral generally are from the same sub-culture as the deceased, and will dress to cultural norms. When there are conflicts, the standards of those closest to the dead are appropriate.

    [True story. I had a florist send an all pink floral arrangement with a central turnip for the funeral of a (male) friend. It was deeply appreciated by the family, because it referenced shared experiences and some inside jokes. It is not, however, an appropriate floral arrangement in the general case.]

    The problem here is that you are insisting that your sartorial standards are the proper communal standards for fine dining, and implying (if not outright stating) that everyone should know that.

    If the restaurant doesn't set a standard, who are you to set one for them? If you only want "dressed up" fine dining, confine your meals to those restaurants that require what you deem appropriate attire, just as those who care about the food and not the clothing will consider whether or not they want to dress up to meet a restaurant's requirements before making a reservation.

  7. If the restaurant has a dress code, customers can either conform to it, or take their business elsewhere.

    If the restaurant does not have a dress code, or has one less rigorous than some customers would desire, they can either go with the understanding that people will dress more casually than they would like, or take their business elsewhere.

    Frankly, the only people who have a right to set "what is expected" run the restaurant.

  8. If your standard is "a generally accepted social convention to dress a certain way for a certain type of activity" then the theme of this thread would seem to indicate that those who are insisting on more formal attire are either in the wrong, or about to be.

    Because it is clear that the general social convention continues to move to more casual dress for dining, even for fine dining.

  9. Bluntly, I view having to dress up as a "tax" that affects whether or not I'll go to the restaurant.

    If the restaurant is good enough, I'll wear a suit. But it had best be good enough.

    And given an option, I'd much rather go to a restaurant that has casual dress and fine dining caliber food, than to one which also requires me to dig a jacket out of the closet.

  10. I cannot recommend Art of the Table highly enough.

    Incredible food, and a truly amazing price for fine dining. I'd definitely pick it over Sitka and Spruce for Saturday night, unless there is something in the menu that you don't like (call ahead, it is a fixed price four course meal, and reservations are a really good idea given that the restaurant seats 22 people, and has a single service).

  11. I had just about given up.

    "Yeah, sure, someone got a Hobart for $25 and a cup of coffee off of Craigslist. Myth. Just made to make me cranky."

    I hit refresh on my "meat slicer" search.

    Commercial meat slicer, works, $100?

    Globe 500.

    Mine.

  12. This one is only indirectly the fault of the USDA.

    This is the fault of the "Oh, no, I can't eat that, it has nitrites!" idiots who also want cured meat.

    So there are stupid rules for what can be called "uncured", but the root cause was the fearmongering about nitrites.

  13. [imagine a long burst of profanity here]

    It's marketing.

    It's adding nitrites, while claiming that you don't really, but without the actual control of the amount of nitrites that get added.

    Bluntly, it is a lie.

    I distrust companies that use this, and prefer to do my shopping from companies that are honest enough to say "Nitrites are needed, we use them".

  14. Please be more specific. What do you want to spend? Do you care how loud it is? Any other criteria? And by the way, would the East Village be OK for you?

    Good questions.

    East village is fine.

    We need to be able to hear each other talk, so noise is an important factor.

    And I'd prefer the total (tax + tip, not including wine) per person to be under $50.

  15. I'll be back in NYC briefly for the first time in a long time at the end of the month.

    So, two questions.

    One, just how insane is Chinatown going to be on the 25th?

    Two, back in the 1980s, two of my favorite restaurants were the Dim Sum place at the bend in Mott street, and 51 Bayard. I believe the Dim Sum place is long since gone, but is 51 Bayard still around?

  16. I need a good source for traditional Jewish food (stuffed cabbage, knishes, flanken, etc) in the West Palm Beach area that can deliver. It does not need to be Kosher, but I do need to have the food delivered.

    Thanks,

    --Dave

  17. So this thing is *great*, but I noticed last night that the nonstick on the two central spikes of the rotisserie assembly is starting to abrade away.

    Has anyone else seen this? It's so thin that it doesn't seem to flake, there are just two strips (which probably indicate that my "non-stick safe" scrubby wasn't quite so nonstick safe when scrubbing off the cooked on debris) where it has cleared away.

  18. I picked up a small piece of Mangalitsa pork belly, and decided to do a comparison with a factory belly.

    I cured both pieces in the same cure, using Applewood Smoked Salt for the salt, and adding maple syrup and fresh Rosemary.

    I can't afford to do all my bacon out of Mangalitsa pigs (especially since I still have a very large stash of frozen pork belly), but the Mangalitsa bacon was significantly better.

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