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Posts posted by Junkbot

  1. Broke down and got it. Have used it many times to make some interesting food items.


    Ultra thick cauliflower mash - Used regular blender and 'riced' cauliflower to couscous consistency or smaller by filling blender with water. Strained excess water from the rice with a nut milk bag. Spread the rice on parchment paper and baked until fairly dry and a bit roasted. Threw all that into the Twister jar with some cream cheese. Super super thick cauli-mash. Could not eat more than a teaspoon a bite as it was very thick (peanut butter consistency). Might have gone overboard with the drying :) Will make it a bit more moist next time. 


    Salvaged under-ripe avocados - Bought a bunch of avocados that were not ripe at all (peeling them was more like peeling an apple, had to use a knife). Threw them into the Twister jar and made smooth guac that tasted fine.


    Smooth baba ganoush - No seed texture at all.


    Pesto - I know that a blender is probably overkill for pesto, but the smaller form factor of the Twister jar helped.


    Black soy bean hummus - Again, super smooth hummus, even with the beans thrown in straight from the can.


    Have yet to make some nut butters, but will get to that soon enough.

  2. Ditto that.  Also, chili pastes.  The spatula that came with the Twister jar is very handy with the big jars, too. 

    Do you need to do any special cleaning to the blender to get all the chili spice out? I know some people have dedicated cutting boards for chilis.

  3. Does BlendTec make a tamper? I thought they did. It's one thing I love about my Vitamix over my BlendTec. The perfectly made tamper that will not contact the blades and can be used WHILE the machine is running.

    Cavitation is a problem with all blenders. It would have been nice if BlendTec made a twister top to fit their jars instead of a dedicated Jar with the twister top for $100+

    Yeah, only drawback with Blendtec is no tamper. I have seen many custom ones made online though.

  4. I love my Blendtec, but one thing that it is not good at is really thick items, as all the food ends up sticking right above the spinning blades. Enter the Twister Jar which has prongs which stir the contents back into the blades. Basically, you do not have to stop blending to scrap down the sides.


    I know I can make some nut butters and hummus with this, but the jar is $90+. Hard to justify that on those two items, but scraping down the sides is such a pain in the neck, and I do love making those items at home. Any other suggestions on how best to use a blender where thickness/consistency is no longer an issue? This is something like a food processor on roids.

  5. for a regular grill on the chimney I use a much smaller 'grill'  it over hangs by only a few inches and Ive notched the chimney so it takes the steel wire that holds the other wires together.


    How do you deal with flare ups? Is that not the purpose of the GrillGrates?

  6. I am finding this device more and more appealing to me considering I live in a studio apt with no range hood. Searing steak in a ripping hot cast iron skillet is great and all, but the smoke is outrageous. How much smoke does this put out for searing steaks?

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  7. I guess my question was how is this press so cheap compared to others on the market? I may be overly skeptical about this, but when this press is being offered for a fraction of the price as other competitors, I'm a bit wary.

    Economies of scale + ocean freight.

    Haha, consider me sold.

  8. That was my response and I apologize if it was cryptic. It was a short reply to a gchat message and I should have been more specific.

    First, as a full disclosure I work at Cocktail Kingdom doing R&D and Product Development. Second, all the products we make at Cocktail Kingdom are high quality and I wouldn't work here if they weren't.

    To explain why it sounds like I'm hesitating in that comment above. I am generally hesitant to suggest any product to someone without knowing what they want to achieve. This isn't because there is a problem with the products but from past experience people often come into our showroom thinking that they want one product when they actually need a different one. This is usually the case when a commercial bar want to start a high volume ice program and they have unrealistic expectations of the quantity/quality of ice.

    The Ice Ball Maker does essentially operate itself. Starting at room temperature it will melt a 2.5" block of ice into a sphere in less than a minute. If you want it to work faster all you have to do is run hot water over it before you place the ice inside. This should cut down the time in half. This is especially useful if you plan to make many in a row since after the first one the metal will be colder and will take longer.

    The three additional considerations:

    1.) if you're not going to use the ice immediately it will continue to melt. for commercial purposes this means that if you make these in advance you will need to refreeze the ice balls. further complicating things is the fact that when you refreeze a bunch in one container they will stick together. so you will need additional trays or some other means of keeping them separate. liquid nitrogen is great for this but most people don't have easy access to it.

    2.) even if you use the ice immediately because the ice ball maker works by melting the excess ice the entire surface of the ice ball will be wet. this will cause an initial bump in dilution before the melting of the ice changes the temperature of the drink. therefore if you want an ice ball as opposed to an ice cube because you want less dilution from the decreased surface area this will not do what you want unless you refreeze the ice ball.

    3.) the quality of the ice cube that you begin with will determine the quality of the ice ball you get. If you are producing cloudy ice in your freezer and not starting with the clearest possible ice the end result will be a very cloudy ice ball. this will be worse than a cloudy ice cube because with the cube the cloudy part is generally in the center and you have clear dense ice along the outside of the cube. To create a high quality ice ball you need to go through extra steps in producing your own clearer ice cubes or you need to purchase ice carving quality ice.

    For most people using an Ice Ball Mold will be more cost efficient and will produce a better quality ice ball. That said using the ice ball maker is always an impressive show if you're doing it a la minute in front of guests.

    This is just a quick explanation and I can elaborate further on how/why ice behaves the way that it does and various ways in which you can tweak your process to achieve the best result.

    If anyone has any questions about any Cocktail Kingdom product and they live in NYC they should come visit our showroom. We have all the tools out for people to try them. Otherwise they can email info@cocktailkingdom.com with questions.

    I guess my question was how is this press so cheap compared to others on the market? I may be overly skeptical about this, but when this press is being offered for a fraction of the price as other competitors, I'm a bit wary.

  9. Does anyone have the 55mm/2.17" ice press from Cocktail Kingdom? I'm curious how cheap it is ($150) compared to some other presses of a similar size. I've always wanted a press, but could never justify the $400 price tag most other presses carry. If anyone could review this model, it could be a cheaper alternative.


  10. One of the reasons I "graduated" to the battery-powered "dispense from the top" pepper mills was I was regularly cleaning the bottoms of the regular ones with a stiff brush and on one occasion I found a spider had taken up residence in the cavity.

    You've just ruined all pepper grinders for me with that bit of nightmare fuel...

  11. I typically blast the roast at high temperature on the front end of the cooking process, then reduce the temp and slow-roast until the meat is the desired doneness. I put a bit of water in the bottom of the roasting pan to contain the amount of smoke. Not enough water to steam the meat, just enough to create a bath for the fat to drip into without creating a flashpoint for smoke.

    I might have to try the water trick, although wouldn't the water boil off pretty quick?

    Was the roast patted dry? I generally sear quickly in a pan after I have dried the meat out of the bag and then put the pan in the hot oven.

    I do the sear after the long roast so that the surface of the meat takes a good char due to it being so dry.

  12. I cooked my rib roast at a low temp for a many hours. I take it out to rest while I crank up the oven to 550F. When I put the roast back in for the final sear, after 5 minutes, there is a crazy amount of smoke coming out of the oven (I see flecks of oil catching fire on the heating element as they're launched from the roast). After ~9 minutes or so, the kitchen is completely filled with smoke. The roast was fine (good sear on the outside), but there was an unworldly amount of smoke, and the inside of my oven will definitely need cleaning. Any way to reduce the splatter when searing as the last step of a rib roast?

    I've cooked steak in the oven before (similar method; stove->oven) which produced some smoke and splatter, but the roast was insane.

  13. The amount of HFCS that has made its way into processed and pre-prepared foods, and the extent to which these foods are eaten nowadays, certainly have been major contributors to obesity. However, people keep on missing the point with HFCS in their demonization of fructose. High fructose corn syrup is not actually particularly high in fructose. The formulation of HFCS used in soft drinks is 55% fructose, and the kind of HFCS used in pretty much everything else is only 42% fructose. Consumption of caloric sweeteners has gone up since the 80s. But it's not like we have any reason to believe that things would be any different if we had used sucrose instead of HFCS during this period. Meanwhile, honey has a higher fructose content than HFCS but everyone seems to think it's great.

    The problem with comparing HFCS vs honey is that honey is not just fructose and glucose; it contains many other compounds and nutrients that affect how the body processes the sugars. According to this study (http://jn.nutrition.org/content/132/11/3379.full), the rats eating honey did not have as high of an inflammatory response as rats who ate a glucose/fructose mixture similar to that of honey. Also, the composition of HFCS in soft drinks is misleading. This study (http://goranlab.com/pdf/Ventura%20Obesity%202010-sugary%20beverages.pdf) found that the percentage of fructose in HFCS used in the drinks is typically higher than the standard 55%.

    Finally, I think people think honey is great because they generally use it in a different way compared to HFCS. I don't think anyone is advocating replacing the HFCS in coke with honey; it would be bad for you either way. But for typical use (sweetener in coffee/tea, spreads on bread, etc), I think it would be better than using HFCS.

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