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Everything posted by ohev'ochel

  1. hi there everyone -- for a while i have been thinking about contributing something to eGullet. since i love food -- like most of us here -- in its many forms [not to mention making it], i decided to to put together an item i have loved since i was little and show how to do it. it is called tahinli and is a turkish pastry/bread which is quite addictive. as u can surmise from its name, there is tahina (sesame paste) involved. it is also eaten by armenians and cypriots and is also available in israel (and a whole bunch of other places, i am sure). this "e-how" is very picture-heavy so...this will probably take quite a few pages. i love to look at pictures, and i hope u do to. on with the lesson...feel free to ask questions. oh yes, it's not really a "diet" item. btw..."avec la farine que ca prend" is an expression i have heard for many of the recipes i have from my family. it translates from French as -- with the flour that it takes. this always meant: don't ask me measurements! just add the flour and u will see. (i measured for u all, LOL). Tahinli 101 tahinli is a yeasted pastry so we start with: we wait a bit .... doo, doo, doo, doo..... and hope there is life left in my yeast (c'mon fleischmann's do ur work!) yes...ignition! while that is doing it's business, i get the other ingredients ready : butter, shortening (or standard olive oil), an egg and some milk. all these things are added to a bowl (i kinda like the look of this picture): and then, mixed: oops! forgot the sugar (yikes ) can't have pastries without sugar!! next goes in salt -love this very finely processed grey sea salt from France- and AP flour now back to "la farine que ca prend" for a minute. most of us younger people learned to cook and bake with EXACT measurements and are lost without our measuring spoons and cups and scales (hehe, me for one!). my parents and relatives cooked alot by eye and feel. no need to measure, no need to weigh. this always annoyed me when i asked the simple "how much" question and got the standard -- "comme ca" answer (like this, with some hand gesture). one of the typical "immigrant" measuring implements i have which was used alot is "le verre", it's a middle eastern tea cup. u just add "un verre de ca" -- a cup of this and that. here it is: don't u just love a blurred image? another item that is special that goes into this pastry is called mahalab (mahlep) and is the ground interior kernel of some kind of apricot (or is it a cherry? think it's a cherry). anyway, it gives a very distinctive taste to baked goods. it tends to clump a bit so i always smash it a little with a cleaver to break it up. i keep it in the freezer for freshness. this is it: while it's not going to make or break the recipe, it is more authentic and tasty with its addition. so the flour and salt are added and mixed as seen here: onced mixed, u get ur standard dough -- which is then put on the counter to be kneaded the stuff in the shaker is my bench flour. i find it easier to use this way. it's pouring rain -- need to close all the windows! will be back to post more later with my sous-chef de cuisine. he's very cute.
  2. i am sure everyone will agree, yes u will have to do another blog!!
  3. I second Patrick S's comment. They look very sophisticated in that format. Additionally, I imagine they are easier to handle/serve than when made in a large cake. Either way, I am sure they taste fantastic. Good work!
  4. hey Bryan, when i saw the picture of ur flatware i instantly thought -- hey! those are Global handles [flatware]. Global has good brand image and makes expensive and well made knives. and besides, some of my best buys came from TJMaxx! lol. in any case, i think they look hip, young and savvy for what u paid. enjoy and good luck with ur venture.
  5. wow, Michelle, your blog gets more interesting every day -- just like the previous one. u pay 26 NIS for a whole chicken??!! it costs us double that, about 12 - 14 dollars CDN for a decent kosher chicken. meat is exorbitant. luckily, i don't have a whole family to feed or i would be bankrupt (or at least vegetarian!). the selections of cheeses u get in Israel is mind-blowing. what we get here pales in comparison. most of it is packaged and well.....the mozzarella tastes like the meunster which tastes like the cheddar which tastes like the parmesan (IMO). i had a question...do many Israelis incorporate typical Palestinian dishes within their diets? (i don't mean falafel or hummus b'tehina). israel is such a fascinating country as its citizens came from so many different countries and brought all their food customs. well, looking forward to the rest of the week!
  6. I am surprised at your problems with the apple peeler/corer. I was impressed at the job it did on apples! It does make one continuous spiral but that is easily cut into slices. Mine sticks firmly to any perfectly smooth surface. You can avoid the baton shaped piece when doing potatoes as that is simply the "core". Don't use the coring blade on potatoes. I certainly would not use it to peel a few potatoes for a small family though - a parer or knife would be faster and better but for large quantities I would seriously consider it. ← i actually think the suction part of the one i bought is defective as the seal is horrible and that was after countless tries. i was somewhat annoyed and shocked at what it was doing to the apples as i was making 2 tartes tatin and other desserts for another occasion which required smooth edges and wedge type cuts. i didn't expect that the cutter would make the spirals. anyway, nothing ventured nothing gained. i still have it and will take another look at it when i need it for batch jobs. i am sure it has its uses. i guess i was just a bit disappointed as i didn't expect the ridges it made and the spiral through the apples. thanks for ur reply.
  7. Anna, i have that same crazy gadget -- only u got it for a buck! i stoopidly paid (ahem) ok, i won`t embarrass myself. after trying to get the sucker to literally stick to the counter with its "ohhh so expensive" suctioning mechanism countless times, it stayed. then came the fun part. watching my apples get destroyed with this very fine peel and leaving weird looking grooves all over the surface of the peeled apple and to my horror making these spirals all through the apple leaving one big, continuous curl. oh yeah, did i mention how it does a great offset job of coring the apple? lol. i think it's faster to peel it urself with an Oxo type peeler and a simple corer or coring it urself manually. i imagine with practice, it does somehow work. it now takes up space somewhere in my kitchen and gathers dust (until my next attempt! have to get my money's worth out of it before chucking it!). hmmm....i have potatoes to peel today. does it have to go through the middle rod in order to get peeled resulting in that baton shaped piece or was that the result of ur trying to make the curls? i honestly only used it twice and only with apples. curly fries are great, too bad the little green wonder didn't work for it. i did see this however (and on sale -- warranted purchase i guess only if ur going to use it frequently): fry cutter/slicer i guess i can use my thingy to turn legs for tables and chairs as Jason suggested.
  8. mark -- it's held together with the semolina (fine white type -- called suji in indian stores or as i know it solet in hebrew or lol, smidi in arabic). it acts like a kind of glue which binds the bulgur. the bulgur must/should be fine, not medium or coarse. after the bulgur is soaked and drained/squeezed dry, it is mixed with the semolina flour and kneaded to make a dough which holds together nicely. the proportions are 1:1, give or take. no binding agent such as eggs or extra water are needed. u do basically the same thing to make a dough for the fried kibbeh but proportions are different and u can use a medium grind of bulgur but it's alot of work to knead the bulgur. after alot of work and a little water, it magically turns to a dough which u fill and fry. i hate making fried kibbeh as they are EXTREMELY fussy and if not made properly will disintegrate and ruin a good batch of oil! hope that helps. roden's book doesn't talk about the kurdish kubbeh/kibbeh.
  9. exactly. That's why I was so excited about it.. I love anything doughy , and I had never seen/used yufka before, and now I have discovered a new ingredient! your kubbeh sounds so good.. i made something like that once, i think from Claudia Rodens Book of Middle Eastern Food, only they were deep-fried instead of simmered in broth. Delicious, but a bit fiddly to make (but I like that) ← klary -- glad u found something new! that's always fun. yufka IS different as u saw/tasted. u can get the stuff in turkish/middle eastern stores in holland i am sure. there is a HUGE turkish community in Germany so i am sure u get tons of their products. the precut triangular yufka is easier and faster also. the kubbeh u mention are the fried kind, they taste very different. u would probably like the kurdish kubbeh if u like doughy things as that is the consistency of the ones in the soup. i can pm u the recipe if u like for u to try. it is very easy to make.
  10. yufka and phyllo/filo are quite different. before anything is added to it for its final product, one product is cooked very briefly (yufka) and the other isn't (filo). the "standard" filo usually is commercially produced in rectangular sheets and sometimes if ur lucky and can find it, round. yufka comes in different shapes: round -- and quite large at times as chufi showed in her pictures -- or square or even triangular for quick wrapping of sigara. the other difference is thickness. yufka can vary in its thickness more than filo. while i have bought filo locally which is extremely thin and machine made, the same company makes another one which is thicker and hand rolled. i also think that the turkish word yufka is also used/meant for the standard greek-style filo dough and is differenciated by the way it is used. obviously, the two doughs give very different texture to the final products. the filo being very crisp and flaky. yufka does not have the same texture. this is a pic of yufka i found. yes, i know it looks sort of like pita and also looks very cooked but usually it's thin enough to roll up and cook, either by frying or baking. this one was fully cooked before being stuffed for doner (meat stuffing) -- which is why it's so dark above. yikes! that's a huge pic! another pic of same yufka being used in donner: as another note, chufi mentioned ouarka -- those are basically the same as feuilles de brik. ouarka/feuilles de brik, usually u get them fresh or frozen in packages and they are round (usually about 9/10 inches, think size of a dinner plate) and look like filo dough but they are somewhat thicker than filo. [eta: it is paperwhite and uncooked also]. hope that helps. correct me if i am wrong about something i posted or forgot anything! btw...getting back to kurdish food, we had kubbe hamusta for dinner Friday night. kubbeh are semolina/bulgar "shells" dome shaped and stuffed with cooked beef, spices, onions and pine nuts. they are quite large and are simmered and served in a sort of sour (lemon) kind of chicken or vegetable broth. very, very good. chufi, ur pics are great (as usual).
  11. kristin -- that looks just like it but it is hard to see since it is a small picture. are there different kinds of wakame? i tried to make it with naruto wakame [cause that's what i found] and it did not fare the same way as the original. the texture was all wrong although the taste was perfect. if u get the chance to sample it, try it. it's actually very tasty leading to being addictive, IMO.
  12. michelle, it is made with kataif(i), which is very finely shredded phyllo dough. ma'amoul dough wouldn't really give u the right texture. b'hatzlecha.
  13. ....and u didn't try it??!! the seaweed ontop of the gunkan IS the same stuff -- so ...... my question remains ---> what the *@*@ is this stuff??!! btw...the salad definitely does have a form of agar which is dyed BRIGHT GREEN but there is also some type of "seaweed" in there.
  14. if u r in the west end of town, try Kim Phat or any of the SE Asian stores on Van Horne/Victoria area (Kim Hour). u can pretty much find them readily.
  15. Maybe. I've also noticed that it's a bit cultural - Aussies, for instance, tend to abbreviate things that I never would have thought to shorten - afternoon becomes "arvo," breakfast becomes "breckie," and so on. I think some of it is personality, no doubt - but there's definitely a culturual element. ← good point, megan -- didn't think of that cultural aspect when i was writing my comment i'm sure ur right.
  16. so THAAAAAAAAT'SSS what <<EVOO>> means!! when i "googled it" (yet ANOTHER term I hate and have started saying....) the other day, the only thing i came up with was a bottle of Rachael Ray (gak) olive oil product -- the window of which i quickly closed. couldn't figure out why everyone was using her olive oil! ok, that was just dumbness on my part. moving on.... a DESPISED & HATED word of mine is ---> SPUD/s (cringing as i type it) i also can't stand hearing Jamie Oliver say "vej". in short all those diminutives of food words make me wanna block my ears and aggravate me. i find them ok to use for, say, shorthand notes in a recipe to save time but to actually use them for speech?? as an aside, i wonder if the use of all these cutesy words have anything to do with one's personality (type)?
  17. ohev'ochel

    Hens and Cocks

    a good answer for your question (with a chart to boot!) is here: chicken & poultry differences there is also a difference between types of North American & European chickens and how they are used, especially in France. The chicken ne plus ultra in France is poulet de Bresse. In the end, most of the difference though is with the age of the bird and how much it weighs... Le vrai coq au vin is classically made with a gamey older bird, i.e. le coq, or rooster. I don't think it has much use apart from being stewed in some fashion -- apart from the capon (an emasculated coq) being used for roasting.
  18. thanks for that info, i will check it out. i believe it's usually only available through some bakeries (read: industry) and not commercially over the counters -- not that i have found yet. ← ohev'ochel-- they also have 1 ounce cakes of fresh yeast at frenco vrac, a health food store on st-laurent, east side, just south of duluth. it's in the fridge to the back right, by the marzipan (which is kinda dumb, as it looks almost exactly like marzipan... ) if you find out what day they cut it up and put it out, yuo can get it that day, but they date it, and i have never had a problem with their freshness. also, just curious, what does your screen name mean? good luck! gus ← Gus! Many thanks for that piece of information; I would never have thought to look at Frenco's for it. I will give them a call to find out when they put out the next batch for sale. I have been looking around for it for a while but never very 'seriously'. As for the meaning of my screen name, it's Hebrew for "loves food" [ohev = loves and ochel (as in the bach, loch sound) = food].
  19. thanks for that info, i will check it out. i believe it's usually only available through some bakeries (read: industry) and not commercially over the counters -- not that i have found yet.
  20. ohev'ochel


    YAY!! Congratulations! Try spooning it in the cup then pouring [before you loose it all] -- that may help. Getting & KEEPING the foam is the art of it and it takes practice.
  21. ohev'ochel


    menton, try this : greek frappe i've never had this coffee but try the recipe and compare
  22. I have 2 and both are Braun. One has been relegated to use for grinding spices only and 12 years later it is STILL grinding its little heart away fine. The other is for coffee only and works as well as it did the day I bought it. The only shortcoming is that it is not a burr grinder which I want, want, want -- more so to have control over the type of grind I need, especially for espresso. There are many on the market and haven't made any decisions yet but have my eyes on one which is way too expensive. IMO the Italian ones look extremely well made. I'd rather wait and spend more for a quality machine than buy a cheapo version (though some of those "cheapos" work fine).
  23. ohev'ochel


    it really is great tasting and "exotic" if you will (though not exotic if this is what you grew up with ). italian espresso is COMPLETELY different. it uses a different method by use of an espresso maker or machine and extrudes the coffee (and making the foam) with pressure created by trapped water being forced up through the coffee grinds. equally as potent and good but a very different flavour. hmmm...too late for coffee now
  24. ohev'ochel


    also try EDNA'S which is an armenian coffee -- very strong and VERY, very good quality. as for preparing it, it takes practice (and practice makes perfect!). for a middle eastern flavour you can also try putting in a few (2 or 3) green cardamom pods [whole] while you boil the coffee and then finish it with a very small amount of orange flower water added before it is served. look at this site also: turkish coffee tutorial
  25. does anyone know of any sources for fresh yeast for baking purposes in the montreal area? thanx in advance. EDIT: that should have gone into the where can i find thread, sorry!
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