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btbyrd

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  1. btbyrd

    Dinner 2022

    Braised pork belly, baby carrots, candy stripe beets (raw and roasted), chard puree, chard stems, grilled spring onions. Pork jus not pictured.
  2. What are you cooking? And what kind of grill is it? Lump charcoal is probably fine. Royal Oak hardwood lump charcoal (big red bag) is some of the best that's widely available. Binchotan is optimally used with highly efficient ceramic konros/robata/"hibachis" or bigger ceramic kamado grills. The overall experience of using those grills with the charcoal is much different than normal western grilling over lump charcoal. Binchotan actually burns cooler, but it is incredibly dense and so it radiates out more IR than an equal volume of ordinary charcoal and will do so for a longer time. This is mostly true of compressed extruded "binchotan" products like Thaan and Korin's sumi charcoal, but these are less dense than the real stuff. These products also don't burn as cleanly (or as long) as true binchotan does. It's not really the sort of product you'd bust out to make burgers and hot dogs for a cookout. Binchotan is something you have a relationship with as you cook. You manipulate the charcoal with tongs to even out (or concentrate, or disperse) the heat as you cook, and use a fan to wake it up if it starts to cool down. A box of binchotan has different warnings than your normal bag of Kingsford. This is aramaru binchotan from Korin. It's a product of Vietnam and isn't made from the hard white oak that the good stuff is. Korin hasn't had it for a while, but it was the most economical way to get something approaching "real" binchotan without paying hundreds and hundreds of dollars for a box: When you look in the box of Korin's sumi charcoal, it looks much different. They're very dense bars/briquettes of extruded carbonized... something or other. Sawdust or coconut shells or something. Similar in that way to normal western briquettes, but these are much denser. There's a small hole in the middle of the extruded binchotan. Thaan is made the same way, but looks darker, is softer, and isn't as dense. I prefer the Sumi over Thaan, but you can get Thaan on Amazon so... that's convenient. Anyway, here's the sumi: And here's some Thaan inside my konro when I first got it. Dark, stackable, denser than western briquettes. But softer, less dense, and dirtier than sumi or good bincho. And good bincho gets that *glow*: Anyway, TLDR: You should probably just use Royal Oak.
  3. btbyrd

    Dinner 2022

    Buffalo burrata caprese. First tomato of the season, overripe and tasty. I put the filling of the burrata in a ring mold and topped it with micro herbs and roasted artichoke hearts. Then more herbs, oil, and flowers. Laid the skin of the burrata down and dolloped with creamy cheesy goodness. Topped with peeled fresh tomatoes and basil. Flooded the zone with Alziari EVOO before making it rain 30 year old balsamic vinegar and Maldon salt. Served with too much bread.
  4. btbyrd

    Lunch 2022

    I am indeed a fancy man (as my wife enjoys informing me).
  5. btbyrd

    Lunch 2022

    Fish and chips. And some salsa Espinaler.
  6. btbyrd

    Dinner 2022

    Southwestern chili bacon cheddar burgers. The pablanos at the supermarket were garbage, so I had to use anaheims instead. And they were kinda flavorless. #neveragain. Dinner came together just as the baby decided he needed to be fed, so the burgers hung out in the smart oven until he said we were free to go.
  7. I don’t know… the chamber size on the Anova seems mighty small. Most of the photos and videos are of it sealing a single chicken breast. I’d want to hear more about real world capacity before I pulled the trigger on one.
  8. I’ve had a dry pump chamber vac (a Vacmaster VP-112) for 8 years and it’s still going strong. I haven’t heard of dry pump Vacmasters having a high failure rate, or heard bad stories about other similar units from a reputable brand. Good dry pump units are good enough for home use. Oil is nice but not necessary unless doing high volumes.
  9. Isn't it a little early to be Christmas shopping?
  10. btbyrd

    Lunch 2022

    Inexpensive Korean spicy instant ramen (ramyun).
  11. btbyrd

    Lunch 2022

    Shin Black with some seared wagyu, scallion, and a 64C egg yolk.
  12. Again, this is mostly a ventilation problem and not a gas problem. Good fans are quiet and best placed at the far end of the vent, making noise considerations moot. But consumers don’t know about this and contractors don’t care, so finding home kitchens with adequate ventilation regardless of cooking fuel is almost impossible. I cook a lot of things outside for this reason. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go sear a steak on a butane burner in my back yard.
  13. Those TFals are pretty light, but work fine. But mine was so light that it caused a problem when I was using it on my Vollrath Mirage Pro. I like to do a slow scrambled egg by setting that to 65C, but the TFal was so light that the pan got overheated and smelled like burning Teflon before the temp sensor knew what was happening. I had much better results with the now discontinued Anolon Nouvelle Copper nonstick pans, which are much thicker. Slower to respond, but more even and able to deliver a decent sear on account of the thermal mass.
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