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Everything posted by mcohen

  1. Given how tedious picking out pinbones in salmon can get, its amazing that Costco's salmon, with the pinbones already removed, isn't sold at a higher price. But, sometimes, you just need to pick out the pinbones yourself if you're dealing with a whole fish or if they don't already remove the pinbones for you. In that case, I'm wondering if buying specific fish pliers are better than using tweezers? And, if so, anything particular that I should get? In Burt Wolf's New Cook's Catalogue, the Messemesiter fish pliers were the only ones mentioned. But, since that book was released over ten years ago, I'm wondering if there are any better choices or options today.
  2. I remember looking at that same report on the website last year, and they had rated the PUR filter higher than Brita for their best water filter pitcher so I'm not sure what changed since then. Keep in mind, that website is only as good as the sources it uses. The problem is that it relies too much on Consumer Reports for stuff that CR doesn't really do well on. (I'm not sure what topic I would trust CR on). Ask yourself this: would you really trust CR's rating on food?
  3. mcohen


    In my lifetime, I've eaten so many chinese meals that I'm sure I must be part chinese by now. But, I was at a 99 Ranch store and noticed they were selling shell oysters. However, I can't ever recall eating oysters in a chinese restaurant. In chinese cuisine, other than using them for oyster sauce, what do they do with oysters? Are there any chinese dishes I could make at home using oysters?
  4. The weird thing is that I googled Testuya Wakada and knife, and I guess he's signed some deal with Mac knives because he's quoted as saying, "It (Mac)is the only brand of knife I will use in the kitchen." And, given his japanese heritage, you'd think he would have used the japanese fish fillet knives as discussed previously in this thread. But, I'm still curious about the Victorniox blade. Under the category of fillet/fishing knives, Victorniox mades quite a number of different knives with different shapes. By now, you'd think there would be some type of consensus on the best shape for a knife to fillet a fish with.
  5. Ideally, what's the best shape for a fish knife? I've seen different variations from cimiter shaped knife where the spine and blade are curved like a sword to something like the boning knife where the spine remains straight. Just when I was all set to buy the Forschner Fat Guy recommended... First of all, I'm kind of confused- it said it was 6" so how did you know it only had a usable blade of 5". What's the most versatile size for a fish knife? If I'm going to fillet fishes like salmon, is the 6" still too small?
  6. What's the best cookbook out there for cooking with fruit? I'm thinking about buying Nicole Routhier's F"ruit Cookbook: 400 Sweet & Savory Fruit-Filled Recipes", but I'm wondering if there are any better choices.
  7. I don't know... After seeing the way those food bloggers debased themselves like that, do you really think Bourdain sees the food bloggers on the same level as him? In his own eyes, Bourdain sees himself more as the too-cool-for-school rebel bad boy. With the way some foodies flock and stalk Bourdain, there's no way he could view them the same way. As modest as Bourdain portrays his cooking skills, I don't ever recall him poking fun of himself as some type of band geek loser who can't get a girlfriend.
  8. This is a very interesting point. If there are specific knives designed for fish, why do we use something like a boning knife to cut up fish? I know I'm almost never going to use it to bone a chicken, and I want the best possible knife form to cut fish. I'm assuming people have used the boning knife for versatility- one knife to bone both meat and fish instead of getting two knives. However, in Fat Guy's experience with professional fish mongers, they're using a boning knife to cut fish even though they don't need that versatility. Surely, the professionals must be using a boning knife for a reason? Here's a really good video: At the very least, you should watch it just for the part about the importance of using a mallet when cutting fish into steaks.
  9. Why not use Steven Raichlen's books? He seems to be the go to guy for BBQ and grilling.
  10. I've started cooking more fish, and I figure it should be cheaper and better in terms of getting fresher fish if I buy whole fish and break it down myself. But, when I've been tried to do that with a regular chef's knife for salmon, I end up leaving so much meat on the bones that I figure its probably costing me more money buying a whole salmon rather than buying salmon fillets. I don't know if its technique or equipment, and its probably both. So, what's a good flexible boning knife to use on fish?
  11. I was just on America's Test Kitchen website, reading throught their equipment reviews. But, with their ballon whisks, I didn't see Oxo as a recommended product.
  12. Plus, Fat Guy probably ended up doing better financially in the end by dropping out of lawering and becoming a food blogger. I know that Lehman Brothers very strongly urged and prodded its employees to invest their money and bonuses back into Lehman Brothers, and he would have lost it all if he had stayed with Lehman Brothers.
  13. This is probably an unpopular opinion, but I thought the show was truly awful during the part about the food blogging community. The other parts were fine but I'm just so... disappointed in the food bloggers who were all too eager to play up to the worst sterotypes about themselves, and by extension, the entire online foodie community, just so they could get some air time. I was just cringing in embarassement as the bloggers laid out to the world how pathetic they were with the whole sublimiation of sex into food. At some point, if you've got some self-respect and dignity, you need to walk off instead of particpating in that charade. The only way it could have gotten worse would have been to find out that the bloggers still living at home with their parents.
  14. What's the best fish spatula on the market? And, what should I be looking for when buying one? I see some that are metal, but wouldn't that be a problem for most people when they cook a fish in a non-stick pan?
  15. Ideally, I was looking for a Weber One Touch Gold. At what point, are they still in good condition. From CL, I've seen pictures of the grills looking all crudy and nasty so I just bypassed them.
  16. To me, its funny that you complained about the editing becuase I've read and heard unedited Alice Waters interviews, and Alice comes across much worse than the 60 minutes interview. But, what ended up happening was that sympathatic journalists would end up editing the interviews so Alice wouldn't come across that badly.
  17. Also, a warning to unsuspecting foodies, that same guy somehow leveraged that blog into a position as the restaurant reviewer at the OC Weekly. I was never a fan of Gustavo Allerano's-I-can't-be-a-racist-because-I'm-Mexican shtick, but at least his Hole in the Wall wasn't that bad with his recommendations. My friend and I spent almost $90/person for omakase at a sushi place because the reviewer at the OC Weekly was swooning all about their omakase. Needless, to say, the omakase wasn't that good- the sushi guy didn't really understand how to do omakase and things were jumbled all out of order. I might as well have gotten a seat at a table. And, to add insult to injury, the sushi, from the rice to the quality of the fish, wasn't that great. It upset me that we spent that much for a mediocre meal, when we could have gotten a very good meal somewhere else for the money we spent. Given how divergent our experience was from the review, I was curious what went wrong- did that place simply have a very bad night. I googled that place, only to discover that the OC Weekly writer was the same infamous elmomonster blogger. No wonder that place was such a disappointment.
  18. Is bottling and shipping water from Europe really that much worse for the enviorment than bottling and shipping wine fromm Europe? If you look at Chez Panisse's winelist, most of their wines come from Europe even though CP is located so close to the Napa Valley. What could be more local than Napa Valley wine?
  19. Is there a specific time in the month when charcoal grills go on sale? And, how much would something like Webers go on sale for? I've got a 10% coupon from Lowe's that I could use to buy a charcoal grill, but I can wait to buy them if they go on sale.
  20. It was $25 when I last tried their lunch menu, not including drinks, tax, and tip. And, as somebody pointed out, the lunch menu does get kind of repetitive especially the desserts which I've found to be the most underwhelming portion of the restaurant. I'd rather not get the desserts, and I view the $25 asthe price for a two course meal and a dessert that I wouldn't have ordered. If Florneau Morneau wasn't married to the pastry chef, I think we'd have seen a new pastry chef by now. Maybe, I misunderstood the concept, but I thought the concept was supposed to be seasonal and local. Yet, I saw asparagus and south american seafood in January.
  21. I tried squeegeeing the skin with a knife, and I didn't think it really worked. Maybe, I did it wrong, but I didn't notice any improvement. Instead, I'm a big fan of this method that Gordon Ramsay demonstrates in the following video: Its amazing how much of a difference it really made. On the same piece of salmon, I tried squeegeeing it on one half and the Ramsay way the other way. It wasn't even close.
  22. I was watching Mark Bittman on PBS where he went to Slanted Door in SF, and he also used a non-stick skillet.
  23. One thing that you'll appreciate after you eat more soup dumplings is how thin and perfect the dumpling skins are at Din Tai Fung are. After DTF, you'll notice how much thicker the dumpling skins are at other establishments to ensure that their dumplings won't break apart. ← The dumplings skins are indeed a beautiful thing but I must disagree with them not breaking as it happened to me It's just a pity that the filling at DTF aren't all that spectacular otherwise they would have truly had THE best dumplings. ← I've eaten at the LA one a number of times, and never had that issue. Perhaps, you ate there while they were still new and hadn't ironed out all their kinks? It takes skill to make those dumpling skins, and they need to train those workers to make those unique skins. Restaurant reviewers usually give a new opening a chance to get their bearings first before they review them.
  24. I studied this book side by side with Rocco's book since they both seemed to be trying to do the same thing, and I thought the Rocco book was hands down superior in almost every way. But, with Rocco's reputation, nobody wants to admit that.
  25. When the LA Times opened up its archive, I noted a drop off in the quality of their food articles being written today compared to what they were writing only a few years ago. For example, in a review of Bourdain's cookbook, the writer took Bourdain to task for his flawed recipes where she actually tested the recipes in Bourdain's cookbook to see if they worked. Nowadays, when the LA Times covers a cookbook, its more along the lines of 'oh, that recipe sounded interesting' without the same thoroughness of actually testing those recipes. I've noticed that trend too where even as the newspapers cut back their food coverage, you're also seeing more blogs and posts from their food writers. I hope those writers are being compensated for the extra work! But, seriously, it probably makes more sense for the newspapers to shift their food coverage to their online section instead of the print section. That way, you could include a lot more photos of the food in the restaurant reviews when that would be prohibitive, cost-wise, to do that in print. Let's face it, a large portion of the readers of the food section are really looking at the pictures. Look at all the poorly written food blogs that have thrived because they include all those shots of the food. The sad part is that one of the local sources for food review in my area rewarded those bloggers by giving them that platform to write restaurant reviews. But, with less pictures in their print review, it's becoming more obvious, to me, at least, how poorly written those reviews were in the first place.
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