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lesliec

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Everything posted by lesliec

  1. Strega has become almost an addiction for us. Go through the list of cocktails on Kindred that use it - you'll find much to like, I predict. I'm jealous about the arrack. Can't get it here.
  2. I had to hop over the Tasman for a funeral this week, so took advantage: The two Jack Daniel's single barrel are duty-free and new to me, although I've had and enjoyed the lower proof single barrel bourbon before. Before I got to the airport I didn't even know there was a single barrel rye. The Chita is a restock, also from the duty free store. Quite unwarranted really; we're nowhere near through our current bottle (but it's so good ...). The Meletti is the newest addition to my amaro collection. Not available in New Zealand, at least that I've found, but there's a company in Aussie (onlybitters.com) that has all manner of interesting things. I'm still lacking at least one ingredient of this drink I want to try, but I'm getting close. And finally, gin from a distillery in Canberra, where I was. A number of local botanicals; tastes good if a little alcoholically 'hot' from being bottled at 47%. But it and the Meletti made an excellent Nerina this evening after I got back. Big disappointment? There's an Aussie gin distillery called Four Pillars who make a 'breakfast Negroni' marmalade from the gin-soaked oranges they have at the end of a distilling run, plus a slosh of Campari. I got a jar and, thinking to make it easier for the agricultural inspectors when I got home, put it in my hand luggage. Turns out, according to the Australian authorities, marmalade is classed as a gel so couldn't be taken on the plane. Damn!
  3. lesliec

    Drinks! 2018

    One hour later: Ooooh, that's nice. If you're already struggling with sweetness you won't find the use of date-infused rye* an improvement, but I like it a lot in this. * I used Wild Turkey. Infusion instructions in the previous post
  4. lesliec

    Drinks! 2018

    Now you've got me thinking (not always the easiest thing to do ...). I tried Craig's original a few nghts ago when it appeared on Kindred. An American colleague years ago gave me some Reece's peanut butter thingies to try; I can't say that experience changed my life, but I enjoyed the drink without any particular taste flashbacks. However, I have some date-infused rye about me (soak dried dates in cheapish rye for about a week - 20 dates to a 750ml bottle is about right) which makes a superior Brooklyn. I think it could be worth a try in this one. Right; that's tonight's drink sorted. Thanks, gentlemen.
  5. lesliec

    Is a "bullet cake" a thing?

    What do you need an emoji for? You're a groan woman!
  6. lesliec

    Is a "bullet cake" a thing?

    Shoot, you guys are really rifling your punsacks! This be them.
  7. lesliec

    eG Cook-Off 76: Consider the Schnitzel

    Thanks, @Tropicalsenior - I wondered if it was to do with firming up the coating. I've never had a problem with it falling apart, but I might give it a try to get some of that puff!
  8. lesliec

    eG Cook-Off 76: Consider the Schnitzel

    I'm enjoying this - @Shelby, I covet your pheasant and your sauce sounds great. A question: several posters have mentioned resting the breaded meat in the fridge before cooking it. What's the reason for that? I've never done it; am I missing out on something?
  9. lesliec

    eG Cook-Off 76: Consider the Schnitzel

    It looks great, Smithy - especially the second photo. Sauce on a 'proper' schnitzel (referred to in this house as schnitzengrubens; cf Blazing Saddles) is quite unnecessary in my view. Maybe a squeeze of lemon juice; nothing else is needed.
  10. lesliec

    eG Cook-Off 76: Consider the Schnitzel

    Well now - I believe this is my first contribution to an eG cookoff. History is being made! Reading the suggestions above, I find I follow almost none of them, but I have no trouble with the coating falling off. Dumb luck? Here's tonight's dinner, step by step. A couple of supermarket chicken breasts: Beaten into submission with the rolling pin: Seasoned flour, egg, breadcumbs: Ready to go: In the pan, one side done: This is a very loose attempt at a parm. Home-made tomato sauce and a few bits of mozzarella, ready for finishing in the oven: And done, with some sauteed vegetables (I've just remembered I'd forgotten the basil leaves): Tasted OK, too.
  11. lesliec

    Drinks! 2018

    I can go with that. The world possibly also needs a cocktail called the Brexit.
  12. lesliec

    Drinks! 2018

    EU-thanasia?
  13. lesliec

    Drinks! 2018

    Thanks, @Craig E. I thought it looked tasty when I saw it pop up on Kindred a couple of days ago, and I can now attest that it definitely is! There are a couple (I think) of aquavit + other spirit drinks in the Death & Co book - I recall the May Fair is one - which we've also greatly enjoyed.
  14. lesliec

    Making absinthe at home

    For whatever reason - probably the rather wonderful summer we're having - my Roman wormwood (Artemisia pontica), one of the colouring herbs for absinthe, is growing profusely, taller than it's ever been and I'm sure I'm harvesting it a month or two earlier than usual: It's an interesting little plant. It spends most of the year hidden out of sight, then about October or so (southern hemisphere) it starts popping up over a larger area than it had covered the previous season - obviously a bit of root spreading going on, down there in the dirt. Grand wormwood (Artemesia absinthium) it a much more in-your-face thing, growing rapidly into a robust metre-high bush which threatens to take over the garden and which refuses to be tamed. I have no concerns about needing to harvest that one early - it's always going to be there when I need it. I'm also growing hyssop and lemon balm this year, both of which look like they're ready to be harvested. This year's absinthe should be interesting. I'll let you know, probably around March/April.
  15. I find it difficult to believe nobody's bought any booze since October! Mezcals are rare here - at least, good ones - so I was happy to find these in one of my haunts yesterday: I've had the reposado version of the Gracias a Dios before (sold out, alas) and highly recommend it. The Derrumbes is a new one to me but smells promising.
  16. Shaking your mai tai without adding the top of the shaker would be worse.
  17. Well, a bombe is a spherical dessert, so I think the serving instructions need to include a big ice sphere. Continuing the dessert theme, how about something like a Baked Alaska - gin/yellow Chartreuse/orange bitters, with an egg white foam on top (blasted briefly with a blowtorch, if you really want to have fun)?
  18. Uncivilised backwaters of the South Pacific do have their charms!
  19. At the risk of looking like I only do things like this in January (which is not the case), I've been making gin again. If you peer at the label you might see that this one's a bit special: Yes, this is Batch 10. I've been making gin for personal use (and a few special people) for somewhere around 4 1/2 years now and for much of that time I've had a recipe I'm very happy with, but for batch 10 I felt something special was called for. I normally use 10 or so botanicals; this one's got 17 (which could be considered excessive, but what the heck - I'm on holiday). I've added black pepper, rosemary, thyme, bay and lavender to my usual mix, plus both dried and fresh kawakawa and some mango peel I don't always have. Plus I double-distilled the base vodka. Was it all worth it? Well, I only turned the still off three or so hours ago and mysterious processes happen in the bottle for a few weeks, but I did taste it and yes, I think I might have something rather nice. Gin isn't usually a sipping spirit - you generally mix it with other things - but this one seems to stand up happily on its own.
  20. Here we go again - this year's haul: Perfection in walnutliness: We got a little carried away this year and picked some 5kg of the things. I knew that would never fit in my favourite infusing vessel, so I divided it in half. That didn't work either - even without the sugar, which I was compos mentis enough to add last, it was still brimming so I did an approximate two thirds/one third split across two vessels. Here's the big one (this is as pretty as this stuff ever gets): Even if my mathematics is as poor as it usually is I'm hopeful it will all work itself out in a month or so when I strain out the lumps and combine the rest. Based on experience with the last batch I expect it to be entirely undrinkable at that stage, but it will improve remarkably over the following few months. And no, I still don't bother with gloves. It starts yellow, like a heavy smoker, and gets blacker over the next few hours. But it will fade:
  21. lesliec

    Sous Vide for Soft-Boiled Eggs

    I've been playing with the 75 degrees/15 minutes technique this weekend. Yesterday's 15 minute eggs still had the tiniest bit of slop to their whites, although the yolks were great, so this morning I went with 16 minutes. Well, sort of 16 minutes - I forgot to immediately set the timer, then dawdled a little over taking them out at the end. But it wouldn't have been much over 16, honest! Eggs in. I find the seive very useful to stop them wandering around the pot: And eggs out. A quick rinse under the cold tap helps make it possible to break the shells without burned fingers: Both whites and yolks were pretty close to perfect. An observation, for what it's worth: I've always liked my poached or fried eggs to be nice and runny, so as to soak into my underlying toast. Wifey, on the other hand, has always liked hers solid. This method makes both of us happy! As has been pointed out above, don't think of these as poached or soft boiled. They're sous vide, and proud of it.
  22. lesliec

    Amari

    @EvergreenDan, I have a glass of the La Sirena Clandestina house amaro one at my elbow as we speak. Highly recommended. Now, speaking hypothetically, should one desire to post the recipe to a highly-regarded cocktail site, what would one call it ... ?
  23. This question was prompted by introducing one of my recent creations to my favourite bar last night. They liked it, but commented it was a 'big drink'. My primary source of inspiration is Kindred, where for the most part drinks seem to be somewhere around the three ounce mark - some a bit more, some a bit less. Three or so ounces is also the amount my glasses will comfortably hold. I'm quite happy with this situation, but do you think the concept of the 'normal' size of a cocktail varies from place to place or country to country? To start the discussion, I recalled this post and one a couple further on in the Dead Rabbit topic in which @Rafa seems to suggest New York bartenders err on the side of generosity in their measurements.
  24. lesliec

    Amari

    OK, we have a result - all strained, sweetended, bottled and labelled (after I took the photo) this afternoon: I'm surprised how much green has remained, although I have no doubt it will fade further. There's certainly none left in the foliage: The taste is great at this early stage. There's nothing I can identify (except possibly some star anise that isn't in there. So much for my palate ...). Experience with other infusions tells me this will continue to develop in the bottle, but I'm happy with my first attempt at an original recipe.
  25. You could try hello@blacktailnyc.com. They may not answer. But they might ...
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