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Everything posted by violetfox

  1. *waves!* Yup, I'm ready! What's open already? The Clam Box? What else?
  2. The thought of poutine rapee prepared sous vide just makes me smile. Thanks for that! Could you let us know how it works if you try it?
  3. Quark wasn't part of Mom's recipe, and I haven't had it. Hers has a standard graham cracker-butter-sugar crust (not prebaked) and the custard is the drained cottage cheese, suagr, lemon zest, eggs, vanilla and not much else as I recall. It's much lighter than a cream cheesecake, very similar in flavor to a ricotta cheesecake.
  4. violetfox

    Fresh fava beans

    All great ideas - thank you!
  5. My mom has a great recipe from her mom (German) using cottage cheese. I'm renting a house and don't have the recipe here - gah! - but you put the cottage cheese through a sieve and then proceed with the cheesecake. I'll see if I can find something similar online...you might try putting the cottage cheese through a sieve and proceeding with an Italian ricotta cake recipe. I don't know if it will be dry enough, though. She calls it cheese pie - these are similar: cheese pie recipes
  6. violetfox

    Fresh fava beans

    I was more than a little surprised to find fresh fava beans at our COOP in Vermont the other day, and I have no idea what to do with them. Yes, I've looked onlie and have a few ideas - how do you like to cook them? Thanks!
  7. So, the world has more problems that we have yet to fret over and now it is about the honeys .. but, never you mind, this is about a simple, very sweet, sticky issue: what is your favorite type of honey? and what do you use it for? or use it as an ingredient for making? Personally enjoy clover and orange blossom honeys ... and you?? ← Clover, wildflower, orange blossom, chestnut, lavender - probably in that order. Good question!
  8. tomatocastles? in the air? Big Burpee? Can you explain this? Hop, you'll understand next year. Try some Brandywines. They get big and ugly. But, they've got flavor! ← Amen and hallelujah! I'll try and see if this year I can grow a $280 tomato, having already managed the $60 tomato (distressingly easy to do) and then the $120 tomato (barely more difficult). IS a perfect tomato worth $60? $120? $280? When I'm actually eating said tomato, on fresh wholegrain bread with homemdae mayonnaise and a couple of leaves of basil? Man, I don't know. Sitting here in the relative chill of a New England "spring"? Sigh.
  9. You seem to believe that people who spend a career growing their public image shouldn't be able to make money off of this work. Well, I hate to tell you this, but that is how show business works. This is one of the various ways entertainers make money. And make no mistake, 90% of cookbook authors and television food show hosts are primarily entertainers. Julia Child may have done her show so she could evangelize to the masses, but Tom Colicchio, Tony Bourdain, Alton Brown, Emeril Legasse, Nigella Lawson, Jamie Oliver, Martha Stewart, etc, etc, etc. . . they wrote their books and did their shows to make money. It's just like people who accuse an athlete of "selling out" when he switches teams to get a fat contract. Meanwhile, all the athletes know that it's always been all about maximizing their earnings while they can still play. Why do you think they fought for free agency? It's the fans who don't get it. This is something that people don't often understand about this kind of business. As an opera singer, lots of people believe that everything my colleagues and I do is "ivory tower art stuff." And, sure, there is some of that. But 90% of what we do is business. It's no different for a writer or a restaurateur or an actor or a playwright or an artist or an athlete -- at least that's true for the ones who are successful. You think Picasso wasn't motivated by business concerns? Sure there are some rarified few who have attained such a high level of achievement, influence and demand that they are able to dictate terms and be "more artistic" (or whatever) in what they do. But they made their way into that position by leveraging their talent and hard work with lots and lots of business savvy. ← But wait a minute! On the last page, you said: "Are you kidding?! We're not talking about Alice Waters here. Padma Lakshmi is a model-turned-actress-turned-cookbook writer-turned television personality. What does she have to "sell out"? I mean, I'm not saying she's a horrible person or whatever. But she makes her living as a media figure. Period. Meanwhile, reminding everyone that she's super-hot is not a bad strategic move. I can't say that I believe she eats a lot of gigantic bacon cheeseburgers and keeps that figure, but that's another subject. I guess Paris Hilton is selling out too." I guess that I'm confused. I don't believe that anyone here has suggested that everyone who cooks and writes books should do it solely for the love of it, and should enjoy being impoverished. Are we seriously comparing Padma with COOKS? With Alice Waters, Tom Colicchio, Tony Bourdain, et al? You JUST said that we shouldn't do that! I'd be surprised if you can demonstrate how Padma has earned her "way into that position by leveraging [her] talent and hard work with lots and lots of business savvy." What talent? What hard work? How can what she does compare to what Alice Waters does and continues to do, to what any of the cooks you mentioned have done and continue to do? And, for what it's worth, I also completely disagree with the comparison between Padma, who is doing something quasi-productive at Top Chef (ostensibly helping young chefs gain visibility), however little of her doing it may be, with Paris Hilton, who has never done a thing except exploit herself and everyone around her for money that she hardly needs in the grossest possible way. Bizarre!
  10. After a large number of visits to Montreal in the last couple of years, I finally made it to Toque a few weeks ago. Easily the best meal of my life, and I didn't just fall off the foie gras truck, either. As others have mentioned, I had the tasting menu with premium wines, and it was unbelieveably wonderful. It included the following - unfortunately I don't have my journal here, so I'm missing a couple of course, all of which were great. Amuse was whipped cream with chives, shallots and crisy toast bits - playfully reminiscent of chips and dip, but utterly delicious. Two scallops, seviche style, served with an extraordinary white Burgundy Foie gras with brioche, groundcherry preserve, hazelnuts with an off-dry Muscat - best single dish EVER. Rabbit deconstructed ravioli Chocolate napoleon with milk and dark chocolate mousse and vanilla ice cream With the bill - A dark chocolate truffle flavored with balsam fir! Sounds crazy, but made total sense. The service was perfect - professional, knowledgeable, friendly, gracious. I like the space and found it very warm and comfortable, although the surrounding area is a bit bleak. Having been to APdC a number of times, it's really hard to compare the two restaurants, but I think going to both is a great way to sample some of the range of Quebecois fine cuisine. Both are extraordinary, in my experience, unparalleled anywhere for a pure sense of place and cultural heritage. Once again, hats off to Montreal for your fantastic food and joie de vivre!
  11. Surely worth a bump? I'll be in Quebec City for the first time in ages later this spring, and I've got some specific and some general questions. Le Saint-Amour? still worth a visit? Laurie Raphael? Not worth a visit? Aux Anciens Canadiens - can't imagine that it's not still worth a visit Le Chateau Frontenac - any food worth having there? how's the bar? it used to be fabulous. What about staying there? Worth the splurge? Best croissants? Best lunch? Best breakfast? (may/should include croissants!) Restaurants that have been there since the 60's and 70's (my misspent youth!) and still worth a visit? Thanks in advance!
  12. Yes, I think so - I was on the right side of the bar, by myself with a monstrous tankard of ale (which I DID finish!). I was wondering if you were the couple to my left. The beans and duck were delicious, but by that time I was well on my way to oblivion. I could have eaten an entire tourtiere without blinking, and a good pint or so of the ketchup!
  13. Oyster Guy, you are quite right to point out Yarmouth to Aspy Bay is -- I just looked it up -- 350 miles or 566 km. If I make it to the 2010 Olympics (as a spectator) I would love to find a good bi-coastal oyster bar. Are you an Official Olympic Oyster Supplier? ← Thank you. I should have said that we are on an extremely loose timetable! Driving is just fine!
  14. Oooooo, food porn! Thanks! I will definitely check out Eel Lake Oyster Farm!
  15. There are quite a few places to sample oysters at their source in the East. Nova Scotia isn't the best one and you can get lobster anywhere down there. I would suggest that you travel through New Brunswick and PEI instead. You can get great oysters out of the Chaleur Bay region of New Brunswick (Just below Gaspe) You can get Caraquettes, Beausoliels and La St. Simons just out of the one bay and they are fantastic at the time of year you will be going. You are best to search out the companies websites and arrange a tour through them. Most if not all oystermen are very happy to give you a tour of their operation. In PEI, you will find tons of places to have oysters at their source. Raspberry Point, Pickle Point and Colville Bay oysters are some of the best in the world and you should try them fresh out of the ocean. The best fish and chips on PEI is Rick's Fish and Chips in St Peter's Bay near Souris (Home of the Colville Bay oyster) Try Dayboat in Oyster Bed Bridge for their lobster sandwich. Check out my thread here called An Oyster Shucker's Tour for more info. Have a great trip and Keep on shucking Oyster Guy ← Wow, thank you! And it looks like a heated fish and chips competition is brewing - does Rick's have Guinness on tap? Anybody sensing a theme here?
  16. We spent 10 days in the Maritimes in late July, and couldn't find oysters anywhere. And I *looked*! We did, however, find lobster, good lobster, cheap lobster, in lots of places, particularly in PEI. Take the tools along, drink NS white wines. Yum. BTW, some of the best fish 'n chips (if you indulge in this guilty pleasure) in Canada are to be found in Truro. Trust me on this. I *know* fish 'n chips. I can also recommend the best place for them on PEI. Murphy's: http://www.yelp.ca/biz/murphys-fish-and-chips-truro winemaker ← Thank you! That's why we're going earlier. Will absolutely do fish and chips in Truro! Guiness on tap, I expect?
  17. Amen. I've made pho 3 times this week! The craving was unbearable!
  18. I'd love to see a cooking show with MPW. Reality TV? Not so much. I'll try to avoid a rant about how reality TV is dumbing down culture to a previously unimaginable low. Oh, oops.
  19. Your title for the topic made me think that Adria had said something awful or offensive on the show. I gather that that's not what you meant?
  20. You say that liking a hotdog and fine dining aren't mutually exclusive, but following the guidelines you're staking out here they are. If I say "coffee and donuts" from Keller are good and I say the coffee and donuts from my local diner are good, are you saying that I don't have integrity? I wouldn't expect a person to scratch his/her head when I said that, because it's pretty obvious that I don't mean they're "good" in the same way. ← The problem is that Hardee's isn't good. I don't know shit about your local diner. It must just be me. It appears I missed the numerous threads on eGullet that talk about how great fast food is. ← No, heh heh, that's the "other place."
  21. And again...Nigella is a damn fine cook whose cookbooks I use constantly, a hard worker, and - obviously - a domestic goddess! I don't for the life of me see how anyone can compare Nigella, who actually DOES SOMETHING and well, to someone whose mission in life is *apparently* to provide eye candy for a reality show.
  22. No way. Tom Colicchio is a respectable chef. Padma is...not. No need for further discussion.
  23. Thank you both for your thoughtful responses. I agree with both of you to a great extent. Having had the great good pleasure of experiencing really outstanding service in a number of wonderful restaurants - including but by far not limited to Au Pied de Cochon in Montreal, Toque in Montreal, Hugo's in Portland, Maine; Cafe Shelburne in Shelburne, Vermont; and Hen of the Woods in Waterbury, Vermont; and of course many, many others - those experiences describe a great evening in a restaurant for me. (et voila! a satisfied customer telling virtually everyone!). In each case, it was very clear that the cooks, chef and servers have a high degree of professional pride and that they consider hospitality central to what they do. I always hope for such a fine experience in a restaurant, but don't expect it, and am perfectly content with ordinary, good, professional and correct service. I've also been to a smaller number of places - and too often they are "fine dining" establishments - where there was little or not evidence that anyone in the place gave a hoot. Unless things are really bad, those are places to which I will not return, because I believe that everyone is fully aware that they're scraping by with the bare minimum. Sure, anyone can have a bad night, and I think I have a sense of that. If the whole place is having a REALLY bad night, that's different. To add a new wrinkle, which may belong in a different topic, really bad service will keep me away from a restaurant with really outstanding food. OK, it could be an off night - once - and I'll go back. If it happens twice at the same place? I don't care how good the food is, I'm not going back. Once can be an aberration at a so-called "top" restaurant, more than once is unacceptable. When I get MUCH better service at my local diner than at a restaurant where one meal with a glass or two of wine is likely to be over $100, I'll go to the diner.
  24. I wrote: " I immediately feel (wrongly) lumped in with all those imaginary (or not), ungrateful customers who don't appreciate and commend good service." So SHOULD I feel lumped in with those ungrateful customers, or is a grateful, appreciative customer simply not worth encouraging? Don't do anything special, don't pay any particular attention, because we're too easy? Is the discussion of hospitality really irrelevant? Is it naive to regard any evening out at a favorite restaurant as a pleasant, relaxing experience where those preparing the meal and serving it actually care, beyond the coin exchanged, whether I'm having an enjoyable evening?
  25. We're planning a visit in June - any earlier and we'd probably freeze to death, if it's anything like Maine! We want to sample oysters at or as close to the source as possible and would love some recommendations. Yes, I have shucking knives and do travel, so that's fine, but restaurants would be especially nice. Anywhere in the Maritimes is within our reach. Thanks in advance! Yes, we will be going to Chromedome's restaurant! :-)
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