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Everything posted by gknl

  1. gknl

    Dips, cold or hot

    Try this cilantro sauce: cilantro, garlic, ginger, jalapeno pepper, lemon juice, evoo, cumin, all blended or processed together into a smooth paste. I've had a few people who say they don't usually like cilantro like this sauce a lot. It's the recipe for Moroccan Eggplant by Felipe Rojas-Lombardi in The James Beard Celebration Cookbook. It goes great with roasted or grilled vegetables, but raw ones work too. I've even put it on hamburgers. Definitely good stuff, Maynard.
  2. gknl

    Cooking Myths

    Tommy, Cold water contains more oxygen then warm/hot water. It's this oxygen getting "freed" faster on the bottom of the pot where the heat is the strongest, turning to tiny bubbles of steam, so making the water "roll", our interpretation of "boiling". Hot water, as you very well described, sitting in that tank being heated - loosing oxygen, when now brought to a boil the "roll" will not be as fast, as the oxygen bubbles are deminished, the "roll" takes longer. But, the funny part is that the temperature of 212F will be reached just as fast in warm water as in cold water. It's the "rolling" boil that keeps us waiting. Ok, all you experts: I stand corrected, as always. I think it's that hot water cooled to the same temperature would take longer to boil than never heated water, but the main thing in boiling water is getting it to the boiling point which is all about heat transfer. The greater the temperature differential, the longer it takes to heat up. But I could be wrong too.
  3. I was sucking on an ice cube while waiting for the check at a brew pub and felt something stick in my tongue. I went to the bathroom and could feel the point of it sticking out, but couldn't see anything or grab onto it to pull it out myself. I drove to the ER where the doc extracted a sliver of glass about a half inch long. I know, I know, that's what I get for drinking iced tea at a brew pub. . . .
  4. gknl


    My favorite quick and easy pasta meal is to add some butter or olive oil and a couple of beaten eggs to cooked pasta that's still pretty wet. Stir it around until the pasta is well coated adding more pasta cooking water if it's too dry. Add some parmesan too if you want. Lately I've been making "tomato confit" sauce: roast halved tomatoes in a pan with evoo covering the bottom at 350 for 90 minutes or so until the tomatoes are caremelized on top.
  5. gknl

    Escolar or "White" Tuna

    According to my Peterson's Guide to Pacific Coast Fishes, Escolar ( Lepidocybium flavobrunneum) is in the snake mackeral family, Gempylidae, related to tunas and mackerals, Scombridae. The family also includes the oilfish and the snake mackeral. They're all predators with large mouths and prominant teeth. Escolars are found worldwide in temperate and warm seas and can grow to over six feet. Albacore (Thunnus alalunga) it's not. According to this website I found, http://vm.cfsan.fda.gov/~frf/rfe2ec.html some scientists also put cutlassfish and scabbardfish in the same family with them. There is a good picture of one if you're interested. And there are other fish listed on the site too if you're interested in science stuff (I majored in zoology in college).
  6. It's on Sacramento Street at Dwight Way in Berkeley. I'll have to look up the exact address. I haven't been there often enough to have any favorites; the menu has been different each time I've been there. I haven't had anything bad there yet. I wouldn't call it four star dining, but it is a cut above most of the Indian restaurant food I've had here in the Bay Area. The menu makes a point of describing which region of India each dish comes from and I haven't seen any other restaurant offer different types of bread with specific dishes.
  7. The recipe calls for plain oil, but I've thought about adding other flavors to the basic dish. I think I need to make it more often so I won't be as scared to screw it up. I wish restaurants would serve this too, but then it probably wouldn't taste the same as my friend's. Mine doesn't taste the same either, but that could be because I use the preground dhokla flour and they grind their own. Dhokla 1 1/2 cup Rice dal, ground to corn meal consistency 1/4 cup urad dal (white mung bean), ground to cornmeal consistency 1/4 cup chana dal (garbanzo bean), ground to cornmeal consistency OR 2 cups dhokla flour (available at some Indian markets) 6 tbs oil 2 tsp salt 1 1/2 cup yogurt pinch of cumin hot water marcha (green chiles) to taste (2 or 3 for me), chopped garlic, to taste (about 3 cloves for me), minced ginger, to taste (about the same amount as the garlic), minced 1 tsp Eno or baking soda coconut sesame seeds Mix the flours, oil, salt and yogurt together in a bowl. Let sit overnight or for several hours. Add enough hot water to form a thick batter. Stir in the chiles, garlic and ginger. Steaming dilutes the taste of the spices so you might need to add a bit more than you think. Add the baking soda, stir well. Pour batter into greased pan. My friends have a special set of steaming pans, but I've used regular 9" cake pans and an 8x8" square pan without any problems. Sprinkle coconut and sesame seeds on top. I've also made it without adding these and it was just as tasty. Steam for about 20 minutes or until a knife or tester comes out clean from the middle. Enjoy!
  8. I use that brand too, and the "house" curry powder sold in bulk at the Indian market I go to in Berkeley, CA. Someone has to be using the stuff for them to sell it like that! Am I taking shortcuts? Yes. Does it matter most of the time for what I use it for? Not to me anyway. Do my Indian friends use it? Decidedly no, but they did say "they weren't bad" when they smelled them. I use the market's pre-made garam masala powder too, another shortcut which works for me. And again, my friends make their own, but said that this one wasn't bad either. This thread made me check my spice cabinet and I'm getting low. Time for a trip!
  9. Dhoklas are one of my favorite Indian foods! Actually, one of my favorite foods period. I've never seen them on the menu at an Indian restaurant though. Luckily, I got a recipe from a friend's mother and it's not difficult to make. The recipe called for Eno's, but not wanting to buy a whole bottle just for the occasional pinch, I substituted baking soda and it seemed to work just fine. I think baking soda is main active ingredient in Eno's anyway. Since this is the flatbread thread, I'd thought I'd mention Breads of India in Berkeley, CA. Their menu changes daily, offering several dishes from various regions of India and always suggest specific breads to accompany each dish. The prices are very reasonable too.
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