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willowen

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  1. That's interesting, because when Mr. Jefferson said that he was referencing the Southern cuisine of his time.
  2. I noticed sometime after they stopped calling it Kraft Dinner in the US! That had to be no longer ago than the Seventies … but the skinny-box straight-noodle stuff was always called that in our house, as a distinctly different food from macaroni and cheese. That was made with elbows, and the sauce was white sauce with either real cheese or Velveeta melted into it. We kids were equally fond of both, the Dinner especially when Mom would cut up wieners into it. I continued to like it into adulthood, especially because the "cheese" was of an amazing shade of orange seldom found in nature (some flowers and Florida sunsets, maybe). Although I value natural foods as much as the next tree-hugger, the openly unnatural ones always kinda tickled me even when I didn't like to eat them (i.e. cotton candy, ick!). Kraft Dinner was one I did like to eat, even after the price began to exceed the old 27¢ by quite a bit, even after it suddenly became Kraft Macaroni and Cheese … I'm just sorry I didn't stock up on the old ones before all this damn virtue kicked in. But I suppose I should give the new one a try. With hot dogs cut up in it, of course!
  3. They're readily available here in L.A. County. I always see them at Ralphs, our area's Kroger affiliate, but I've seen them in farmer's markets too. Mrs. O was resistant to eating greens when we first met, but a memorable meal a friend made for us of potatoes, collards and fresh pork sausages cooked in the oven together got her rapt attention. The only problem I have with them now is that they are better with some meat, and as I'm now the only carnivore in the house (the cats don't count!) I hardly ever cook them, though they would be nice just well seasoned and braised. Plus, as is the case with Beebs in Vancouver, I'm on the edge of the San Gabriel Valley with its very heavy Asian population, and 99 Ranch and the other Asian chains of course focus on Asian greens. But we have both Latino and Armenian markets too … so if I've been neglecting collards, it's just a matter of finding time to cook everything that catches my fancy!
  4. When I was "re-batchelorized" the first time I wasn't really cooking yet, and that was when I first encountered the supermarket rotisserie bird (or maybe they had just been invented). This was 1968, and they were $1.25 each … and my answer to your question at that time would have been "ONE!" Even when I'd intended to save some, this fog of deliciousness would descend, and when it lifted I'd be greasy, grinning and cleaning up the pile of bones. Under the regime of the latest (and final!) Mrs. O, we would get at least two meals from a decent-sized bird, no matter how prepared, plus a packet of the cooked and uncooked bones etcetera added to the freezer. After two or three of those had accumulated their contents and some appropriate vegetables would go into the crockpot, which Mrs. O referred to as the Shrine to Our Lady of Perpetual Broth, our night would be fragrant, and in the morning the results would be strained through layers of cheesecloth. That would be good for at least two more meals, whether soup, gravy, or chicken and dumplings or noodles. Now Mrs. O eats no birds (nor beasts), so the only time I cook a chicken is when she's away for several days or longer. Next month she'll be gone 2 1/2 weeks … so I'll get back to you on this!
  5. G. Rice, You should probably not bother – the flavor is very mild and will stay that way unless you decide to brine it some more. While I love the hardcore dry-cured Southern pork products, I like a mild-cured meat as well, and that's what this is. Not even really cured, as the package says "KEEP REFRIGERATED." It's more akin to those Cook's ham slices, but better-quality meat and no smoke flavor added. I would not slice this and serve it as appetizers, but as an accompaniment to the vegetables one would serve with boiled corned beef I like it a lot. I did in fact have some with my leftover colcannon – a dish of potatoes mashed with leeks and cabbage and plenty of cream and butter – and it was perfect. For sandwiches, well … you'd want mustard. @ rotuts – This isn't brisket, it's pork loin cut to resemble brisket. The brine is very mild, and that spice packet is something this really needs.
  6. That's interesting; I found this for the first time at my Ralphs (SoCal Kroger affiliate) store last week, tried it, and found it delicious. Had to stock up, since it didn't move well and they probably won't get it again. I tripped over this thread trying to find a source online! I don't know if you just followed the directions as given, but my favored method for any meat of this sort is to start it stovetop then transfer to a slow oven. I'd gotten a 1.5 lb piece for the trial. Brought it to a boil in a 2-liter copper cocotte and skimmed out the gummy threads it threw off, then dumped in the spice packet and put it covered in the oven. Gave it 1 hr/lb and checked the temperature until it reached 160º. Then I reduced the heat and gave it another hour. Drained it, let it cool a bit, and sliced some off. YUM. Had to try three or four more just to make sure … I have a three-pound slab with a good solid fat cap I'm saving for an Irish-themed dinner party sometime. It goes beautifully with colcannon. I also cooked an intermediate sized one with which I intend to make a batch of hash. I'm pretty much over cooking corned beef – I'm the only human carnivore in the house now, and don't feel like the bother of wrestling with something that may or may not be tender or even chewable, but which is at least expensive. This is tender without being flabby, the fat is nicer, and I love the mellow porky flavor.
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