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Everything posted by fresco

  1. New average kitchen size: 336.025 sf. This is great. More, please.
  2. So far, respondents' kitchens average 487sf (not counting Jonathan Day's place in France.) Keep 'em coming.
  3. This seems almost too good to be true, but the Wall Street Journal discloses that the original Ronald McDonald was fired "because I was too fat." Wonder if he'll be a plaintiff witness in some of the fast food obesity lawsuits? http://www.statesman.com/business/content/...cfb06c0004.html
  4. Jackal10, A thousand sf?! I've lived in houses smaller than that. Really curious to see if anyone can top that.
  5. In our household (two reasonably gregarious parents and one inordinately gregarious 20-year-old son) the kitchen is without question the centre of activity. We have a separate dining room, but almost all meals are taken in the kitchen. Between the island and a small table, we can seat six people comfortably. There's a small room used mostly for storage behind the kitchen, which opens onto a deck. On warm days, the deck (with Weber) is an extension of the kitchen. My assumption is that people who are interested enough in food to become egullet members probably place unusual emphasis on their kitchens, and that certainly seems to be borne out by some of the posts and threads. And that leads to my questions: how big is yours, and do you feel it is roomy enough? I'll go first: ours is just over 250 sf, and we think we could easily use another 100 sf. Your turn.
  6. Pixelchef, Missed it. Must be jet lag.
  7. It's very hard to make general observations about cooking in the UK, because, as George Orwell observed long ago, the best English cooking is found at home. But if supermarkets in London are any indication, the level of cookery is pretty impressive. As a Canadian who visited fairly often, I was struck by the range and quality of produce, meat and other foodstuffs available to the average Londoner in Tesco, Sainsbury, etc. And I believe that the UK was years ahead of Canada or the US in offering a complete range of, say, eggs, in ascending price from the battery version to organic free range in supermarkets. Here in North America, eating habits are studied extensively--one often quoted conclusion being that Canadians are far more likely than Americans to cook their meals from scratch. There must be similar research extant for the UK and if so, I, for one, would love to hear about it.
  8. A genius and a million bucks just aren't what they used to be, are they?
  9. Better his words than their fries.
  10. They are also served (billions and billions) who only stand upwind.
  11. I don't think McDonald's and its legal advisers are dumb enough to sue a food critic and/or his publication out of existence. What a suit like this does is make just about everyone think twice before publishing stuff critical of the Golden Arches and its emanations. It also tells that world that McDonald's stands behind the quality of its food, such as it is. Far more effective than putting someone out of business, and far more impact, for that matter, than most of its recent advertising campaigns. But you are right about the US, they won't try it there.
  12. Brains. Tripe. Brussels sprouts. Kiwi fruit.
  13. fresco

    Perfect rice

    My wife uses the "knuckle" method. I just use twice as much water as rice. Think it amounts to exactly the same thing. We don't rinse. We heat to boiling in a pot with a tight fitting lid, then immediately turn the heat to low and cook for 20 minutes. Brown rice gets twice the cooking time and a bit more water. We don't lift the lid during the cooking process or mess with it in any way. Neither of us is anything remotely like a rice expert, but I can't recall a failure. I think using good quality rice is important--and I'm assuming you wouldn't touch minute, converted or other such abominations.
  14. Fine Cooking, published in Vermont, could be an honorary Canadian magazine--have you ever noticed the high proportion of letters from Canadians? There's something about the tone that is quite Canadian. The editors seem to go out of their way to avoid glitz and have a marked preference for what works over what's trendy. Of course, if it was published in Canada, the title would be something like "Not Bad Cooking."
  15. fresco

    Odd Measures

    Is that more or less than a "smidgeon"?
  16. fresco

    Odd Measures

    It's the liquid equivalent of a "dash."
  17. fresco

    Odd Measures

    Two more (archaic) butter measurements--"the size of a walnut" and "the size of a hen's egg."
  18. fresco

    Odd Measures

    "A knob of butter" --British
  19. Quote (Jinmyo): "...they also have frozen cassoulet." I guess, on balance, this is a good thing. Your posts (and Weekend Updates) are an adornment on this site.
  20. Government-run liquor stores are a mixed blessing, as drinkers in nine of 10 Canadian provinces can attest. In Ontario, for instance, a customer wishing to purchase a case of a particular wine is likely to be met with goofy bewilderment, rather than the "You bet. Can I carry that out to your car?" that one would expect in a private establishment. Still, the uniformity of these stores does mean that it is usually possible to buy acceptable wine (or whiskey or brandy) in even the most remote places. It's kinda like the Canadian approach to health care, education, or most things, which levels out regional differences while giving excellence a wide berth. But it must be said that the threat of privatization has spiffed up stores, selection and to a limited extent, service, at least in Toronto.
  21. The Loblaw chain in Canada, with its massive array of private label products (it also operates various regional supermarket groups in the U.S.) has managed to both dominate the domestic retail food market and to influence, sometimes for the better, the national palate. While it purveys things like five-pound packs of frozen lasagne, Loblaw has also achieved the not inconsiderable feat of making things like evoo and balsamic vinegar something close to mass staples in Canada.
  22. Mark Twain. Besides being a man of considerable parts (itinerant printer, reporter, gold miner, Mississippi steamboat captain) after returning from the overseas expedition that resulted in An Innocent Abroad, he compiled a list of all of the foodstuffs from his homeland that he'd missed, which still makes me drool thinking about it. In addition to which, he wrote Huckleberry Finn.
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