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mikec

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  1. I see a lot of recipes that call for roasting in a skillet. Personally I use a roasting pan a rack. Frankly, I'd prefer to use a skillet as it would make clean up much easier. Doesn't the splatter factor become an issue when using a low sided skillet?
  2. I agree wholeheartedly. We have the same type of buffet. When we use it as a buffet, we put down placemats to avoid the dragging/sliding factor. Another annoying problem is when your guests politely help clear the table and slide plates across the counter towards the sink.
  3. You ever try roasting a pepper on an induction hob? ← MobyP, Maybe I'm mistaken, but I've always understood the difference between an open burner and a sealed burner is the fact that spills and overflows can't seep down into the inner guts of the cooktop or range. I have sealed burners on my DCS cooktop, yet it's still an open flame. I have no trouble roasting a pepper on my cooktop. I think that you are misinterpreting what is being discussed.
  4. I have no opinion on the quality of Bluestar ranges. However, I can't for the life of me understand why anyone would want open burners these days. What a mess.
  5. My oven heats up the house as well and I have a brand new DCS oven. It's cool to the touch, but vents in the front and thus heats the kitchen. Plus, every time you open the oven heat escapes. It's a function of the oven itself and the ability of your air conditioning system to keep up with the heat.
  6. Blondelle, That reminds me...My countertop is at the same level as my belt buckle and I've made several scratches (not major ones, but still scratches that are too deep to mask with oil) in front of the sink while doing dishes or washing something in the sink. I've also banged a dish on the edge above the dishwasher and taken out a small chunk. Damage to the edges of your countertop are a disaster. Chips or dents that occur directly on a vein show up as bright white and are virtually impossible to fix as well. I too bought my soapstone slab at M. Teixera like Fernwood. IIRC, there was one type of soapstone that they called Cobra that was quarried in India. Apparently it was a little harder than the other soapstone. According to the people at Teixera, the availability of this stone was spotty. Frankly, while a nice looking stone, it had minimal veining and thus to me, it was missing some character. If you are looking for a black countertop, this is a very interesting option. I know that I've come across as being down on soapstone, and to a certain degree that is the case. However, I do love the looks of my countertops, but really wish they were more durable and that I didn't have to be so careful. My point in making these posts was to explain the downsides of soapstone because they weren't made very clear to me before I purchased my countertops and I hope to give people a clear idea of what the issues may be before they go and spend thousands of dollars. Again, it's all about your ability to tolerate "patina".
  7. Sorry to see this topic so late. My wife and I did a complete renovation of our kitchen this past fall and have now lived with the results for about 10 months. For the most part I've been very pleased with the choices we made, but I have two regrets... Our Jenn-Air french door fridge has been a real pain. It literally died six weeks after installation and we've had it serviced several times. Mostly for minor things, but still it's been annoying. I researched countertops quite a bit, and was all set on granite. Then, when my wife and I were in our cabinet maker's showroom, we fell in love with the soapstone counters that they had on display. After more research we came to the conclusion that soapstone was for us. However, there are some serious issues that come with soapstone. Frankly it all depends on how much you are willing to accept numerous nicks, dents, cuts, and scratches. If scratches are going to bother you, then soapstone is most definitely not for you. It's amazing how SOFT soapstone is. There are posts within this thread that cite soapstone as being hard. Sure...it's hard when compared to formica or lineoleum. But extremely soft when compared to granite. I can literally scratch it with my fingernail. If you have a small crumb underneath a cutting board and you slide that board, the crumb will scratch the countertop. I'm going to repeat that sentence...A CRUMB WILL SCRATCH THE COUNTERTOP. Opening wine bottles leaves a mark. Everything we do involves a cutting board or trivet. One of the big pros of soapstone is that you can put a hot pan directly on it. Sure that is true, but make sure you put that hot pan onto the countertop gently and straight down or you will have a large scratch. Yes, mineral oil eliminates many of the minor surface scratches. But it doesn't do a thing for a deeper chip, scratch or dent, and they occur all too often. Frankly, I think that my Soapstone countertops are much more aesthetically pleasing than granite or any other stone, faux stone product out there. But don't kid yourself, granite is a hell of a lot more durable. I just oiled my countertops this evening...I do it about every six weeks...it takes less than ten minutes. They look super. However, if I had to do it all over again, I'd put in granite. I'd have very good looking countertops (not as good looking as soapstone) AND very functional countertops as well.
  8. mikec

    Shallots

    If you still have the shallots, a simple easy way to roast them is by laying them flat on a wide sheet of aluminum foil (after you peel them of course). Season them with kosher salt, cracked black pepper, and then drizzle with olive oil. Seal up the aluminum foil so the shallots and the seasonings are inside. Place on a hot grill or inside an hot oven (450?) for about 15 minutes. You should end up with beautiful roasted shallots.
  9. GE Profile does make a 31" almost counter depth fridge (30 3/8 in deep). I forget the model number. ← The problem is that most counters are 24" deep. I wonder if you received an incorrect spec on the GE.
  10. Sam, I appreciate the head's up on the deals. However, as a wine lover who frequents many of the NYC stores, I'll tell you that even with the discounts mentioned, Union Square Wine Shop has some of the most expensive prices in NYC. The sale brings the prices down to close to market prices. It's sad, cuz the store itself it very nice and has a great deal of space. For wine, Garnet is hard to top for price and Chambers Street is hard to top for service.
  11. Can I assume that this place is not BYO? If so, it pretty much gets knocked off the list of restaurant to try even though it's about seven minutes from my house.
  12. Is this on the corner? Mountain Ave and ? Across from what used to be Friendly's and is now a bank?
  13. Lou/Tommy, IMHO, the wine pairings are not the way to go. The wine list at Babbo is outstanding and for the same amount of money, one could purchase a very good bottle. However, while the pours are generous, the wines themselves (I did the reserve pairings) were substandard at best with only one exception.
  14. Rosie, I've eaten at Trap Rock and Huntley. Both have good food and on Thurs-Sat, hopping bar scenes. You might want to try and get a table upstairs by the fireplace at Huntley to avoid the hubub by the bar downstairs. They have a wonderful list of beer. My biggest problem is the fact that they have a liquor license. For me, that's a huge turnoff when eating in NJ.
  15. Sweet Waters isn't pretentious. It is however, fairly expensive. You might want to wear more than jeans, but if you wanted to go in jeans its not a problem. The last time I was there, this Spring, I had a very good NY Strip.
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