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Everything posted by pfunk_49

  1. pfunk_49

    Dove recipes?

    I'd start with a fricasee, making sure you use really good eggs.
  2. Cool, thanks! Too bad I'm only here for another 3 weeks. cinghiale: word of warning, too much readily available raw milk in your neck of the woods can cause you to rain on everyone else's parade.
  3. had dinner at Osteria Del Cinghiale Bianco last night and was very disapointed. It is a nice place the staff was very friendly. It was the food I wasn't really very excited about. I started out with one of the specials for a starter. Burratta from naples with shaved truffles. I know it's not truffle season, but I just spoke to my chef where I'm working and he said the truffles available now are decent and at 200 euro/kilo compared to 2000, I should take some home when I leave. Thought I'd give it a shot. The real problem was that the burratta was served so cold, that the truffle just couldn't find a way to be aromatic. The Burratta at Il Pizzaiuolo last week was far better, mostly just that is was more fresh, seasoned nicely and at room temp. Next I had Parpadelle con Ragu Cinghiale. This was actually quite satisfying. Pasta was very good, nice bite and cooked well. I also liked the ragu. Not overly aromatic and the real essense of the boar was present. I wasn't blown away, but very satisfied. Coniglio arrosto con potata - I had high hopes because I've had some great rabbit in Tuscany. Just not this night. It was as if they made this dish for staff meal at 5:30 and left one portion in the oven until I ordered it 4 hours later. Pretty much inedible. The sauce was decent, although pretty salty. I tend to see alot of sauces here that have alot of fat that hasn't been skimmed from the roasting. This wasn't the case, nice color and rosemary wasn't overpowering, just salty. I didn't order any formagio, because my server said it was a fresh pecorino. I wasn't interested in any of the other cheeses which looked somewhat genaric (tellegio, parm-reg, gorganzola). I also passed on dessert, just because I never really order it unless something really stands out. Maybe it was a bad night, and I think I just shouldn't have ordered the burratta. I'd probably give it a shot if someone else really wanted to try it out.
  4. Anybody have this? It looks pretty solid. http://www.amazon.com/Art-Making-Fermented...howViewpoints=1
  5. no idea, but now I'm curious. Seems like it would be a lot like whole grain mustard though. That's really just white wine, vinegar and mustard seeds. Some other aromatics if I remember right.
  6. What about the use of salt the second time, after you add the stock? At the beginning or end? ← Don't salt again until they are finished. I also think that the beans we have here are some sort of superwhitebean. I cooked some averagewhitebeans the other day and they didn't blow me away the way the others do. I think it's still worth deciding for yourself though.
  7. pfunk_49

    Home-made Pancetta

    I agree that I can't find any reason to roll the pancetta, unless you specifically desire that shape. We've got one (a stressa) here at the restaurant that is litterally 5 or 6 inches thick at it's thickest, and probably 24" wide (not long). This thing is incredible, there is a peice of meat running through it that is at least the size of a normal pork tenderloin. The flavor is absolutely incredible. Jason, I still haven't gotten to butcher those pigs yet. I'll let you know when we do. I think it's kinda the European way for schedules to be a little vague (no offense intended).
  8. I was actually just thinking about the whole onions today and how I can't wait to get back to cooking in that oven. I was contemplating weather roasting them in a big bed of aromatic salt (rock salt, whole peppercorns, juniper, crushed bay, various zests etc...) would improve them. It's probably not worth it, but maybe something to try. I was just at a bakery here in Tuscany with a huge WFO that had a cool little trap door built into the floor right by the door. all of the ash and coals are just raked into this and it's clean. Drops into a big bin like an old fireplace cleanout. I forgot my camera, but I'll be working there a few days next month, so If anyone is interested...
  9. Another tip: after using your oven, if you plan to use again w/in a few days or so, set up logs in the opening to start your new fire. The heat still in the oven will dry them very nicely and your next fire will start in an instant.
  10. pfunk_49

    Bean cooking liquid

    cool your beans (if you're not eating immediately) in the liquid first. I just posted a bean revelation on the thread about best tip of this year or something like that. Agreed to cook rice in it. I know this is the way Jamaicans make rice and beans, actually half bean liquid and half coconut milk, but I could be wrong. Norm Van Aken simply reduces it and adds it back into his beans to serve reheated, giving a creamy texture while still leaving solid, not mushy beans. He's actually got a whole little disertation about his "black bean kit" - his aray of about a dozen aromatics he uses in his black beans. They are pretty awsome.
  11. pfunk_49

    2 racks of venison

    Great job on the temp! Actually all around looks very good. It's true about the silverskin, gotta go. It's tough though,because you end up loosing a lot of meat if you want to take it all. And you end up with a very tapered chop. For anyone else reading this thread (since you've already enjoyed your near perfect meal), I just took part in an all venison (daino actually) meal here where I work outside of Florence. One of the courses was a loin (wild not farm raised of course) cured and served carpacio style. Silverskin was removed and loing was covered for 2 days with crushed juniper, bay and fresh sage. remove these and cover with course salt and put a weight (we used a 5 liter tin of oil) on top for about 18 hours. Rinse this well, dry and hang to airdry for another 18 hours. This will keep for at least a week I'd presume. Slice thin and serve on frissee and radichio with a vin santo vinegrette (sherry vin as alternative?) and pecorino tuscano. Sorry to hijack your thread. Thought people might like to try. I'm sure something less valuable than a loin could be used. btw: daino (dye-no) is the name for a deer like species here in Italy. This would be considered a marinato de daino. You could add 1/3 sugar to the salt if you wanted to cut some of the saltiness out. Daino is quite sweet so we left it out.
  12. Thanks Chris, I knew I still remembered some of the mundain details from into to sauces.
  13. Start here: http://www.fornobravo.com/ sorry, I'm new here, so not sure how to add a link. They mfr ovens and have 3 free e-books (pizza, bread and general cooking) as well as a forum Some things I make off the top of my head. Always cook my whole chickens in there. Use the Zuni recipe and pay special attention to the salting and air drying prior to cooking. Unlike Zuni, I still truss my birds. I've tried both ways. Be carefull of temp of oven (not too hot) and make sure you're birds are room temp. Get a couple Lodge cast iron fajita skillets. They are great in there. I actually take some of the wood ash from the oven and rub it into skillet with oil before searing red meat. I came across it by accident, and It's really quite nice. Scallops are great in there. A large all-clad type pan allowed to get screamin' hot. Remove from oven and add some high temp oil and place seasoned (never previously frozen) jumbo scallops in. Return to oven about 2-3 minutes. from here you can either flip and return another minute before removing scallops to rest while you deglaze/reduce, mount with butter and herbs, or don't flip and drop in a bunch of butter and baste scallops with this to finish cooking, making a scallop brown butter at the same time. You're definitely not limited to butter sauces either. When I have tomatoes coming out of the... garden, I cut them in half horizontally and squeeze out seeds (strain and save juice for whatever) and place cut side up on sheet pan with olive oil. Put this in oven once fire is completely dead, but still warm. close door to oven and slow dry (maybe 6 -8 hours?) I recomend getting one of those infar red thermo's. I've seen one at Harbor Freight for like $6. Not sure if I trust $6 compared to usually like $90, but at that potential savings, I'd give it a shot. Eventually you'll know how hot your oven is. I do pizzas at over 700. Takes about 2.5 minutes, finish by lifting to the top of oven where flame wraps around to really brown toppings. (btw, you WILL burn a few pizzas) sorry for the long rambles, home this helps. I've only had about a month with one of these things, so I'll revisit this post this spring summer when Wyoming allows me to cook outside again.
  14. chris makes a good point by actually telling you what this does. raw tomato paste is pretty forward and sharp. This will mellow it out a little, as well as give a little more depth.
  15. hmm... didn't realize there was a significant amount of protein in a tomato. That's good to know. Pince is french, should have the little accent mark on the e. And now I'm questioning my vocabulary, but I'm pretty sure it's correct. I've never been any good at spelling foreign words. Pretty sure it refers specifically to caramalizing (or Maillard?) of tomato product, usually priot to a deglaze. I most comonly use it when making brown stocks. Brown mirepoix well, then caramalize tomato paste before deglazing and adding to stockpot. I should never leave home without my food lovers companion, especially for four months!
  16. man, just lost about three paragraphs of typing. Maybe I should be more brief. This was one of this weeks new ones. Better dried beans. I'm doing a stage in Tuscany, so I wouldn't question my chef on white beans. I know this goes against some conventional wisdom, but trust me here, I've cooked alot of beans in my life and these are really the best. Start by blanching 3-5 minutes and shocking in rapidly boiling, salted water. We use the big pasta cooker at the restaurant. Next saute off rough chopped mirepoix in alot of olive oil suitable for saute. I'm talking almost a shallow fry. Drain beans very well and parch (saute basically) for 3-5 minutes as you would start risotto. Now finally add your stock or water, pork or bone if you want (we use a bone from a prosciutto) and a few bay leaves. Simmer lightly until al dente. When al dente, cover tightly with plastic and allow to cool to room temp. Store for reheating in liquid/aromatics. Oh, don't peal carrots, just scrub. I personally never peal them. Just make sure they are well cleaned, the flavor difference is amazing.
  17. If I remember my underused culinary terms correctly, the technique is called "pince" (peen-say). And you are looking mostly to caramalize sugars in the tomato product and to also create fond. You don't have protein in the tomato, so there is no maillard. You'll want to do it relatively slowly, because you can very easily burn it and ruin the dish. because of this, you'll want to do it once aromatics are already cooked to your liking. After the pince would come your deglaze/reduction. Then the addition of your more liquid ingredients like the other tomato product. Your recipe probably tells you this though. I'm a little confused about why you would leave out those other ingredients. I realize alot of people shy away from both anchovies and capers, not understanding their role in the context of a dish. I used to do it all the time. Give it a shot and I think you will be pleasantly suprised. The capers and anchovies will lend saltiness and the sugar will balance the acidity of the tomatoes and wine. Lately ive been followin Paul Bertoli's advice from cooking by hand and adding a tomato leaf or stem (if available from the garden or from vine ripes) for the last few minutes of cooking a sauce. It brings back alot of fresh tomato taste into a sauce that has been simmered/reduced
  18. pfunk_49

    Spaetzle tips

    For quite a while, Roland foodservice ran a full page add in Food arts for a mustard spaetzle that made it's way into my recipe file. Unfortunately (not for me) im doing a stage in Italy and had no need for a spaetzle recipe, so I can't help you out. Maybe someone on here has a subscription or roland's website. Called for whole grain and dijon (presumably so you buy both of their productsi), sour cream as well as rosemary and chive. As stated, not overworking gluten is key as is having a the biggest pot you can find. It's always good to keep the water at a constant temp which means you want the most volume of water possible. good luck
  19. Just ordered the extra precision. I think it will work great for a fermentation chamber for salamis and in cheesemaking. excited about the possibilities. As for the the circulation bubbler, any insight into this. I'm assuming an aqauirium pump and something that can withstand high temps for an aerator?
  20. I agree that the first menu is a little amatuer, but disagree about the second menu. I don't want guests "scanning" prices. Guests (IMO) are more likely to scan for a lower price, nobody really goes looking for the highest priced item on the menu (also not the one you necessarily want them to order). Admittedly, I didn't look at the pdf's or links, so I didn't get everything I could out of this thread. It is a real pet peave of mine (I've got a lot of them) when a great or even very good restaurant has one or two totally slack things about it, like a poor menu or website.... or mispellings on either. Recently found a mispelling on Blackbird's menu website, which I think overall is weak (website, not restaurant). Let's see, how many words did I just mispell? BTW: the Grand Cru menu is nice, that's usually how I lay out menus for tastings. I think maybe the space between the boldface menu item and the description could go away, just a thought.
  21. -I start a 3 month job in Firenze in about 2.5 weeks. -I'd start by asking each and every chef you know(especially instructors) if they have a contact there. That's what I did, and I'll be working for a friend of a friend of a friend. -The usuall gig (my understanding at least) is no pay w/ room and board, so be ready to have some money saved. -Check with the American Culinary Federation to see if they can help. You'll need to pay for a membership, but if it gets you the job you're looking for, great. I used my membership to secure a work visa. -There is an Italy forum here, try that too. Good Luck! Ciao, Paul
  22. Anybody have any recommendations? I've had nominal success finding an acceptable Pho in the city, and would love to be blown away. Thanks in advance!
  23. I just did the recipe from pork and sons for thanksgiving, but smoked rather than roasted. I only brined 72 hours with injection and the cure seamed pretty uniform. I wouldn't do it without injection though. I don't have the recipe b/c i'm out of town, but maybe someone on here (or the pork and son's thread) can help with that. The addition of curry was very nice. I think it was about 21 pounds with the bone and smoked at around 200-220 for about 9 hours. came out very well. Oh, and the split pea soup the next day was the best I've ever had!
  24. hello, this is my first eGullet post so I'll introduce myself. My name is Paul Funk and I am currently a private chef in Wyoming with mostly fine dining experience at Colorado ski resorts. The reason I left restaurant life (temporary) is because private work allows me to collect a little nest egg, but mainly have paid time off to do some stages. I've just lined up three months of work at TOSCANI DA SEMPRE in Pontassieve, about 18 km from Firenze. I'm just wondering if anyone has any insight into this restaurant. I don't know much about the place because a friend of a friend ( a very trustworthy one) set it up. Apparently this chef (Stefano) also runs LOCANDA CON CUCINA. Thanks in advance!
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