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Anonymous Modernist 3281

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  1. well, i've been using my baking steel a bit for the last week or two... it's so great. The cooking is so even. no wonder 99% of restaurants are willing to put inexperienced teens in front of these things. they are so forgiving and it's very easy to get excellent results with foods such as fried eggs, hash browns, hamburgers and so forth.
  2. I almost feel guilty for going to eastern steel in brooklyn and grabbing two 1/2"x12"x18" A36 steel plates for $44 each, but I want to play, too. The edges are sharp and they are not seasoned, so i brought them down to my shop where I'll eventually fix them up all nice... but it might be a little while as I have other things to do... so I guess if 'd bought the MC one i'd already be ready to go....
  3. I would definitely go with the SVM 1500D HD PID controller. I have bought 4 of them now. 2 that I gave away, and 2 that I use regularly. With the first one, I have been using with an 8 quart electric fryer that I got at a garage sale for $5. I suggest you go on craigslist or go to garage sales to look for any kind of electrical cooking gadget like that one to save money. A year or two after I had started using the 8 quart, which is big enough to cook most of what you'd ever need to, really, I splurged and spend $150 on a butterball turkey fryer, which can let you sous vide a 22lb turkey to perfection or a whole bunch of other stuff. When I'm cooking two whole briskets for a big party, the big fryer comes in very handy. I would recommend that you preheat the water to save wear and tear on the svm, and learning how to use the autotune is a must. also get a couple extra probes, in case a probe goes out on you. this has happened to me a few times, and of course it's right when you're using it. The SVM was the one of the first modernist gadgets I bought, but far from the last. Keep your eyes out at garage sales and auctions (for restaurants and labs) for good deals on a lot of the other stuff. I'd say a close second to what's useful for me is the pressure cooker. the kuhn rikon ones are great, as are the german made fisslers. You really need to experience caramelized carrot soup and garlic confit, both of which are easy to make once you have a pressure cooker. I also love how it's possible to make pulled pork in 20 minutes in a pressure cooker. that's just kinda awesome. One thing i'm really happy to have is a berkel 350 chamber vacuum sealer. I had been doing sous vide with microwaveable/freezer ziplock bags for at least a year and doing a pretty good job of it before I stumbled upon the berkel 350 at a restaurant auction. I have discovered that this is a very useful appliance and i've found that I use it just about every day for one reason or another. It's not only great for sous vide, but for food preservation, especially in the freezer, as well as the fridge. Certain recipes, such as compressed marinaded watermelon and aerated chocolate are really nice bonuses of that particular toy. I forgot to mention my infra red laser thermometer. I use that a lot. I also use my accurate scales often.
  4. Ok guys, I've been thinking about getting some kind of baking steel ever since I read about it in MC but I'd like to know why the one you have developed is so much better than let's say a chunk of 304 stainless or 316 1/2, 3/4 or let's say 1" in thickness from my local steel fabricator in Brooklyn... does your steel have some kind of unique properties I don't know about? can you help me so I'm not comparing apples to oranges here?
  5. I noticed you guys mentioning spinach butter in a video and i couldn't find that recipe in your books... so could you give it here? also, is there anything useful that can be done with the solid puck that comes out of this? as a matter of a fact, feel free to name some useful things to do with all the parts.
  6. heh come on Judy you're killing me! :-D how do I make them continue to stick together instead of coming apart? PS I made carnitas in the pressure cooker... primo!
  7. Hehe but Judy, what went WRONG? please help! I want to try again and this time have clusters that continue to CLING TOGETHER! Also, the recipe calls for dipping the peas in 194F water for 1 minute, but it takes at least 3-5 minutes for those peas to get to the desired level of doneness for my tastes.
  8. My life experience has been, the thicker, the better. I really like to get pots and pans from restaurant supply stores, or even better, restaurant auctions. not silly $300 aluminum pots, but perfectly utilitarian heavy bottomed pots and cast iron skillets. I got a couple 12 gallon heavy aluminum pots for $5 each. I've gotten 12" cast iron skillets for $1. once you season these properly they end up with a perfect non-stick surface. The book's advice about getting a thick 1/2"-1" plate of aluminum to put on the burner can make any pot cook evenly. When you have a really good heavy bottomed pot, the heat spreads more smoothly and you don't get hot spots that cause burning as easily. Another product that is very helpful can be found at most any Indian grocery, which is a heat diffuser, that goes under the pot. That's a cheaper version of the aluminum plate and is probably under $10. Here are some heat diffusers on amazon http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Dgarden&field-keywords=heat+diffuser My Kuhn Rikon pressure cooker has a heavy bottom and in conjunction with a diffuser, doesn't burn reducing sauces even when the burner is on high. That's pleasant.
  9. Thanks @pazzaglia! I'll give your suggestions a try. I go to stores around here in ny such as "north shore farms" and "fairway," which have all the really good brands... barilla, de cecco and divella are among the lower end ones in those stores. I think we're spoiled around here. They also have lots of home-made pastas... which leads me to ask... if i use fresh, not dried pasta, then how's this all play out?
  10. I've found that when it's warm, everything flows more easily, so it can be easy to mix the solids back in, but when it's cold enough, the solids stay in their place at the bottom and don't bother me.
  11. I got a great set of sorting sieves,with 1/4, 1/8, 1/16, 1/32 and 1/64th mesh, all stainless steel for $13 at the local indian grocery. these have been in the dishwasher several times and there's no signs of rust anywhere.
  12. Well, I'm curious now... is pectin an essential part of pea butter or not? The easiest way to find out is to do a run. I'll go get a bag of peas at the grocery, thaw, add 10% water, .2% pectinex, puree, then do 30 mins at 40C and then turn it down to 5c for a while to harden the butter, if there will be any... we'll see how that goes.
  13. Will the pectinex ruin the pea butter? or will i still get that out of the peas? I heard David Arnold explain that 15 minutes or 6 hours at the same low g force really doesn't make any difference. He said that in about 15 minutes most of what's going to happen happens. The timer on my Beckman GS-6R has "hold," and up to 30 minutes. I made two batches of pea butter and got two results. The first batch started with semi frozen peas, that i pureed in my cuisinart. I put those into the centrifuge at 40C for 30 minutes. I got 27 grams of pea butter from 920 grams of peas. To try and increase the yield, I then allowed a bag of peas to thaw completely, then I pureed those, deaerated them (oh I did that to the first batch as well) then spun them at 3200 g like the first batch but this time 40C for 30 minutes then 5C for another 5.5 hours. It probably takes the centrifuge 15-30 minutes or so when on, to reach the new temperature, but I wasn't watching. I only got 12 grams on the 2nd run. The fact is that the output was very similar in other ways. I got about 250g of pea water both times... maybe 300g. What was your experience?
  14. I have found for the soaking of the pasta that instead of instructing "one hour," the instruction should be "until soft enough to bend without breaking." That varies depending on the pasta. I had tried using pressure, n02 and the whipping siphon to accelerate the process but that doesn't happen... pressure cooking sounds like it's apt to make the pasta far too soft... is that your experience?
  15. Hey everybody! So in the last day or so I have been playing with my centrifuge and peas. I made pea butter, which is a delicious little delicacy I highly recommend to anybody who hasn't yet tried that, pea water, and with the pea water, an attempt, at least, at sweet pea clusters. I followed the recipe as best as I could determine. Here's a link to my blog with a couple photos of what I ended up with: http://www.cookedthreeways.com/2013/02/peas-in-onion-consume-with-mint-and.html Basically, although I'm pretty sure I followed the recipe accurately, the peas simply started to come apart once they were in the 194F water bath. What might I have done wrong and how can I troubleshoot this recipe?
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