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Everything posted by haresfur

  1. haresfur

    Patrons with lattes

    Well, I totally agree that it is inappropriate to bring an espresso into a place that sells them. I also agree that it is inappropriate to bring a drink into a place that has a sign forbidding the practice. Still, I don't think anyone is obligated to order a drink with a meal. Economically, bringing a coffee in is no different from ordering water. The only places I've seen with one drink minimums were ones where the beverage was not the major attraction Order well, tip well, and rationally it is a net gain for the restaurant. But our rules for social interaction aren't necessarily rational and people can be boors. Personally, in some circumstances I don't think it is rude to bring a drink, but what is important is what the other party thinks is rude - that is the essence of being polite. I think jsmeeker hit the PNW phenomenon on the head - people see their latte as an extension of their hand.
  2. haresfur

    Canned Chicken

    When I worked in bush camps in northern Canada, we maintained a supply of canned food that was intended to keep you going if the supply flight was delayed. As such it had to be something that wouldn't disappear because of midnight munchies, or more likely sheer boredom. The canned chicken was firmly entrenched at the bottom of that barrel. Well, boredom is a powerful thing and one time, when the fresh meat was gone, we broke into the canned chicken. The sound of opening the can has already been described. I can only say that the taste was everything you imagine it to be.
  3. haresfur

    Extreme Beers

    This pretty much sums up my attitude. Maybe ultra hoppy beer is new to the rest of the country but in the Pacific Northwest there are decades of experience with mouth-puckering beer. Gotta use up those Chinook hops. It seemed odd that the article talks mainly about heavily hopped beer but then doesn't provide any measure of the bitterness - just a reference to the alcohol content. I suppose there is some sense in that because, as they say, I would want a pretty strong and malty beer to balance the hops. Could they at least give a hint of which hops were used? Or does beer tasting have to sound like wine tasting for people to think it credible? Somehow knowing a beer is "robust with chocolate, caramel and balsam flavors" doesn't help me guess if I'm going to like it. I like chocolate but am not big on caramel...
  4. haresfur

    I'd like a hot latte, please

    So, you are getting what you want. Keep ordering it. This will stand you in good stead when Starbucks arrives (although why anyone would want that over the ambiance of a good Amsterdam Cafe, I don't know). It is one thing to use a half-dozen adjectives for your espresso order, but a real master asks for the exact temperature rather than a vague "extra hot". I do find different places do different drinks better than others so it can take some experimenting.
  5. haresfur

    Dining Alone

    A friend of my parents, who would spend extended periods in London alone for her historical research, described how to get respect as a woman dining alone: She went to the local Italian restaurant in Hampsted where she had a flat and with her meal, ordered a very good bottle of wine that she consumed in its entirety. The next time the staff fell all over themselves to take care of her. As she explained, "It's not just knowing a good wine, but showing you know how to appreciate it."
  6. Wonderful! Normally I don't miss Manitoba in the winter, but I wish I could attend your event (and I don't eat much pork!). Can't wait for the next report.
  7. Ok, since you asked. Here's my father's recipe as handed down to each of his children. I tried to more or less preserve the formatting as he wrote them: German Pancakes - my brother's 4 c. flour + 1 tsp salt - add milk in glugs and stir in each glug til the dough is thin. - add eggs (2 per person), beating them in one at at time - fry about 1/3 c of batter per pancake in butter. Ragout - make a white sauce, using water instead of milk - add lemon, salt + sugar ----------------------------- German Pancakes - my sister's 3/4 cup flour per person pinch salt add milk with minimal stirring until consistency of thick glue add eggs - about 2/person - you can skimp a bit beat well after each egg adjust consistency to that of heavy cream with milk fry in butter, hold in oven at 250 Degrees F ----------------------------- GERMAN PANCAKES - mine 2 c flour dash salt 4 eggs or so milk Add milk, about 1/2 cup at a time to flour, mixing only lightly. Result is a gloppy, sticky, lumpy mess, thicker than glue. Now add as many eggs as you can afford, one at a time, beating like all hell. Maximum is about 7 for this amount. The batter will still have lumps, but they won't be big and don't matter. The consistency should be that of heavy cream, or slightly thicker. Heat frying pan very hot, use lots of butter to fry pancakes, turning when they are no longer liquid on top ------------------------------ The details: These are thin, crepe-like pancakes about 10 inches in diameter. A cast iron skillet is traditional but a non-stick pan works well. Getting the temperature right is tricky, especially since I try to use minimal butter (sorry Dad!). They should cook quite fast. My father would fill the kitchen with smoking butter (and cigarette smoke - don't watch if a few ashes in the food worry you). Once the pancake is cooked it is folded in half and half again and added to the stack in the oven. To eat the pancakes are unrolled on your plate and served with the beef ragout alluded to in my bro's recipe (very tiny cubes of roast beef in the sauce) or apple sauce. The sauce is ladled into a strip down the center, the cake re-folded over top and (especially if you are a kid) sugar sprinkled on top. Variations: I substitute 2 egg whites for about half the eggs (that low saturated fat thing). Mushroom sauce or a cauliflower-cheese sauce is good for the vegetarian branch of the family. I usually do a mushroom sauce or a scallop sauce along with the apple sauce (don't think I've ever made a roast). Dessert: With all that sugar??? We never got dessert with this meal. Try to end on an apple sauce one.
  8. "Feeding people is almost always a good thing to do" - haresfur I don't worry much about whether or why the food bank customers need the food. The upside of a full belly is profound even if it just helps someone maintain until they get it together. It's worth asking what the food bank needs most, but I also feel the need to give something within the bounds that satisfies me. I have settled, personally, on canned fruit in light syrup. It's healthy enough, perhaps a bit of a treat, and I hope it is palatable for many of the young and elderly who may have trouble maintaining nutrition. ...protein is good, too.
  9. Not a specific answer on the varieties you are interested in, but Murchies in British Columbia has a reasonable green tea selection. I have seen sencha at upscale/wholefood grocieries like PCC in the Pacific Northwest. If you are after bags, I'm particularly fond of the sencha/matcha blend available from Costco in their typical substantial boxes. For that matter you might consider matcha since you drink the powdered leaves which probably gives more concentrated chemical delivery. You can also cook with matcha. The best price on cooking matcha I have found was from Bobateadirect.com (do a search because it isn't their main product and can be hard to find). I get the pure matcha that isn't cut with sugar. There are also some EG members that sell matcha and possibly other tea that may chime in or pm you. Hope your friend does well; chemo is so unfair - when you go to the doctors they aren't supposed to make you feel sick.
  10. I'd definitely prefer weapons to cellphones any day. ← The bars that say, "Check your weapons at the door." are ones where I'm not about to!
  11. Perhaps, but would you expect that of a reviewer for The Stranger I guess I would expect a Seattle reviewer not to be clueless about Asian food. I would certainly wish that a reviewer in a free paper with a diverse audience could educate the rest of us, so I would be less clueless (more clued?).
  12. haresfur

    Why does anybody buy . . .

    Pringles? Is it because they aren't fried? If you are going to eat potato chips they aren't going to be healthy. If you want to pretend they are healthy or want to actually taste potato, then buy the lower fat ones cooked in canola. If you want to eat cardboard, throw out the Pringles and eat the tube they come in. The only advantage I see, is that they pack better for camping trips.
  13. Nice yurt! I hope the Baldwin continues - there is something extra satisfying about good food in an out of the way location. It's always good to get pointed to a decent taco - I try to take visitors out for tortas since that is about the most interesting food here. I'll try to check out Double Mountain sometime, and your other suggestions.
  14. Thought I would revive this thread since I was just introduced (much to my surprise) to a nice place in the Dalles, called the Baldwin Saloon. (Hood River is probably deserving of it's own discussion). The Baldwin is on Court St. north of the main E-W streets. Its one of those places I'm seeing more of in smaller towns, often in fixed up older buildings, where the food ranges from burgers up to quite expensive (for me) dinners (another thread, perhaps?). I think it was worth a visit just for the walls covered in oil paintings - mostly Pacific Northwest scenes (and a classic reclining nude over the bar). I had bouillabaisse that was a trifle spicy for my tastes but with very nice seafood, especially the mussels. Service was friendly and good. Apparently there sometimes is piano music from a loft accessed from a wooden ladder. Anyway, a good place to stop after a day kayaking.
  15. haresfur

    The hoax of leftover-turkey recipes

    When I was growing up, one of the main points of Thanksgiving was to make turkey in Hollandaise in the next few days (well, after feeding the family, friends, and any stray graduate students that were around). Actually a mock hollandaise - lighter and better IMO - with those canned button mushrooms in the old days when decent fresh ones weren't available. Nothing wrong with picking at the remains in the fridge or sandwiches but why not inspire people to try something different? That being said, I'm stuffing and roasting a pumpkin this year. Not sure what to do with the leftovers of that.
  16. Reminds me of when I was eating dinner in a very busy place in Paris - sharing a table with 2 Italian business men and a young French guy, who made it very clear he was in a hurry. After his main course, he was trying to get the waitress' attention and she was pointedly ignoring him. Finally she asked from about two tables over if he wanted dessert. He said he'd have a coffee. She lit into him saying that she didn't ask him if he wanted coffee; coffee wasn't dessert; did he want dessert? He said, ok, he'd have some ice cream. A couple of minutes later she whisked by our table and without slowing down, slapped a piece of apple tart in front of him. Must have annoyed her to no end that it wasn't until after I left that I realized that she had brought me the wrong salad. --------------- I try to be easy going about silly language stuff but I really hate "How's it tastin'?"
  17. I suppose I'll try to pass off some pickled asparagus, again. In May a friend and I did up 50 lbs (fresh wt). You do lose a lot cutting to fit the jars. Actually, I think this year's turned out well.
  18. haresfur

    Chinese Yixing Clay Tea Pots

    I think you have it backwards - the tea enhances one's enjoyment of the fine pottery - but I love ceramics. Seriously, it is the whole experience - kind of like a restaurant with good service and good food. I'm not compulsive about it or anything (I use a lot of tea bags) but using a nice tea pot or drinking out of the perfect (for you) mug is satisfying. The Yixing teapots do age. A friend pointed out how a well used one had developed a softer surface sheen. This may well affect the flavor. Even glazed pots are said to get better as they develop a thick tea-stain. I think this would be more pronounced with an unglazed stoneware. So give it time and enjoy your teapot.
  19. On a historical note, doesn't Chinese-Canadian and Chinese-American restaurant food go back at least as far as the construction of the railroads? I recall seeing some turn-of the century pictures of Chinese restaurants in Prairie towns. The railroads workers included cooks and effectively spread their influence across North America (I speculate that that may have been at least in part to get away from the conditions in the work camps). I'm not sure what this means for the home vs. restaurant N. American Chinese cooking, but I'm not sure that distinction is that important. Don't many regions with strong restaurant cultures have quite different cooking styles at home? I, too, think there are regional differences in Chinese restaurant food across the U.S. as well as with Canada although there are perhaps more overlaps. I haven't seen "Duck Sauce" in my western home town. I do miss the local Thai, Chinese, Mexican restaurant that had been run by a Thai woman who emigrated to El Salvador then to the U.S.
  20. haresfur

    Tea Shopping

    I like Murchie's in British Columbia, Canada. I think it is getting easier to order on line from them. Often I can manage to get someone to bring some down, though. I'm partial to their No. 10 blend, Empress Afternoon and they have a good Earl Grey. They shine most with the black/green and black tea blends IMO. Murchie's Tea
  21. haresfur

    Japanese foods--kudamono

    Yes, I would have bought a whole box of the hosui but I agreed to split a box with someone else. I think the box cost $17 US or maybe $14.
  22. haresfur

    Japanese foods--kudamono

    Do people in Japan cook with nashi? I have most of a case of asian pears in my refrigerator - a coworker grows them but I haven't had too good luck cooking or baking with them. I'd be interested in learning whether these are typically only eaten raw or if there are some ideas for me to try. Thanks!
  23. haresfur

    Restaurant Names

    It was mentioned up thread but I have to add: In 1970, I was living for a year in London with my parents. On several occasions I remember walking through the streets of Soho in the rain, looking for a place called Lee Ho Fook's... and pretending not to know my father as he asked the bouncer at a strip club for directions. So when I first hear Warren Zevon's Werewolves of London, recorded it in 1978, I just about died when the repressed memories resurfaced. However, we were after the Peking Duck, not beef chow mein (Can't believe this is my first post. Guess I'd better slink over to the Japan forum...) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Werewolves_of_London