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xxchef

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    http://www.BlackMesaRanch.com

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    Northern Arizona

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  1. I've been working in commercial kitchens for over 35 years and have never seen or heard of a really good way of dealing with this situation. We run a tight ship and very clean operation but, despite every possible effort, every once in a while we see a house fly in the kitchen. We use fly predators outside, bug zappers & sticky sheets, good screens on everything and positive refuse controls but they still come in sometimes. Usually I can shoo them away from the production area and then swat them, clean & sanitize and be good to go again. My personal dread is to be in the middle of a health department (or other) inspection and have one buzzing around his head. How would you handle this?
  2. I know this says "2012" on the title but I just had to "bump it up" with this gem: Hold the Meat: White Castle Introduces New Veggie SliderFull article here: http://www.nbcnews.com/business/consumer/hold-meat-white-castle-introduces-new-veggie-slider-n277261
  3. My notes say that Jean Marie expects 90 day (60 day guarantee) shelf life @ 0.62 aW and that 0.72 - 0.75 aW = maybe 5 weeks life. What was that one ganache Melissa made, 0.96, I think?, and he said "Eat it within one day".
  4. Still "on the fence" for this one. Awaiting feedback from my plus one and will get back to you ASAP if "yes".
  5. Please sign me up for the Thursday Lotus dinner. Thanks.
  6. Thanks so much for the excellent suggestions. I don't know why I didn't think of curd. I love lemon curd but it didn't occur to me for the oranges. I was not aware about the bitterness factor for Navels and will have to keep that in mind. Re-gifting is a fun idea too. Thanks all.
  7. It's citrus season in the south west and several well intentioned (but obviously overwhelmed) friends have shared with us their backyard bounty. I now have well over 50 lbs of mixed orange citruses (oranges, tangerines, tangelos etc). They are awesome, delicious, sweet, juicy and perfect but how many oranges can 2 people eat? I'll probably make some marmalade, juice some and puree up some more to freeze for future fruit-based beverage and confection experiments but I could really use some help on a few good, solid everyday uses to put them to. Just got off the phone. Another friend is on her way with a "big box of citrus" for us. Maybe it will be lemons or limes? Help?
  8. Congrats to our own Rob Connoley (The Curious Kumquat in Silver City, NM) for being nominated by the James Beard Foundation for Best Chef: Southwest! http://www.jamesbeard.org/blog/2014-restaurant-and-chef-award-semifinalists That's awesome, Rob!
  9. No worries, Ruth. Michael just wrote "I found out that indeed we are [donating]. I have been traveling and was not told about it. We are helping our good friends at Chocolat. :0) ... Yes, it should be changed to Muir Gourmet."
  10. I have been emailing with Michael Muir, VP Sales & Marketing at Muir Copper Canyon Farms (listed above as a sponsor). He had no clue what I was talking about when I mentioned the workshop. He said ". If we were to sponsor an event like this it would be under Muir Gourmet, not Muir Copper Canyon Farms. I run all of our sponsoring/marketing efforts. I have not authorized a sponsorship of anything in Las Vegas." Any idea what's up with that?
  11. I have not been able to find info on the when/where/costs/details for the dinners and tours. Could someone point me to them? Thanks.
  12. I personally dislike over-decorated chocolates. A LOT. I go out of my way to find appropriate, yet simple garni for our candies and, if it weren't for the need to distinguish between different but similarly shaped and enrobed centers, I'd probably go for a nice, glossy "nekked" every time. You can get a lot of mileage out of creative stringing variations and, when really necessary, look for a complimentary garnish. A sprinkle of espresso powder on a cappuccino truffle or a piece of candied orange peel on a Grand Marnier center is SO much better than some stock transfer sheet or meaningless luster dust. BTY, a lot of "luster dust" is basically plastic and says right on it "non-toxic, but not to be consumed". Scary? Yep.
  13. I've started stocking up on ingredients for our upcoming crazy Holiday candy making season and have been somewhat blown away by 10x (confectioner's) sugar price differences in my area. We're way out in the boonies of northern AZ but I can get one of the major food service suppliers in the state (Shamrock Foods) to deliver to a country store only 6 miles from our ranch for a small delivery fee (beats the heck out of the 4+ hour trip to Tucson or Phoenix). Shamrock 10x sugar in the 50 lb bags is currently at $0.98/lb so I've been looking around. If I go to Flagstaff (2.5 hours) I can get it for around $0.69/lb in 4# bags from Sam's Club. In looking around a little more I discovered that my nearest Restaurant Depot (in Tucson) has the 50 lb bags for $0.47/lb, less than half the Shamrock price! These are all for the exact same product (C&H pure cane sugar) too. Is this pricing difference common in other areas? I'm going to save about $400 after expenses in the next 2 months by having somebody run down to Tucson for my sugar. It's crazy.
  14. What is the texture of the potatoes like after they have been frozen? Maybe a little softer, but they're fully cooked and in a sauce anyway so it's really not noticeable. Probably comparable to leaving them in the oven for an extra 15 minutes or so when originally baked - nothing too detrimental.
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