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Everything posted by gulfporter

  1. Thanks...it looks like a winner! Thanks to others for recipes, too.
  2. I could also stay home, turn off all the lights and tell her we had to rush out of town for an emergency. But I don't lie very well. I'll figure something out. Thanks all for the suggestions. Still would appreciate a link to a kitchen tested recipe for the Moroccan chicken pie (aka, bastilla, pastilla, b'stilla).
  3. I ALMOST forgot it was Pi Day! Will make a stove-top Key Lime Pie (and hope it sets up and chills by evening).
  4. I like this idea. While the sushi recipe looks killer, another neighbor said this hostess always does a theme potluck and is compiling a recipe book for the neighborhood based on a decade of these events. This explains the footnote on the invitation asking guests to bring their recipe. I'm still the new kid on the block and don't want to upset any apple carts. Back to the bastilla recipe....I've been googling and find many variations. Anyone one have a tried and true recipe?
  5. We've been asked to bring a casserole to a neighbor's potluck party. It's our first invitation from this couple, don't know them very well. I have zero experience making casseroles, or at least what I think of as a typical casserole....indistinguishable proteins mixed with a lot of pasta or rice and a ton of cheese holding it all together. They always seemed too heavy for us, especially on an April day in Florida. But the invitation clearly says "casserole" so that's what we need to bring. Is there such a thing as a light casserole?? A gourmet casserole?? I'm trying not to sound snobby, it's just that I don't have any go-to recipes filed under 'casserole'
  6. Brought home two spicy products today. Cowboy Caviar...salsa with black beans, corn and peppers. Muy picante y excelente! I would buy it again. Sweet Chili Jam....really wanted and expected to like this, but the 'seed' factor from the chilies makes it chewy and stick-between-the-teeth uncomfortable. Flavor is good so I may play with it...maybe dilute into a soup or sauce?? I don't think it'd sieve well as the seed ratio is quite high. Ate both straight out of the jar and will serve as condiments with tonight's grilled salmon fillet.
  7. That seems like a lot of food considering they'll have eaten breakfast around 8AM and are eating lunch at noon! They are light eaters (we've known them for years, used to be neighbors). Like I said 10AM is an odd hour. Gonna go with some sort of fruit. If not the dates, then maybe a mix of plain and chocolate-dipped strawberries (which are amazingly sweet right now in FL).
  8. Both good tips on coffee cake and scones....for most anyone else. We live in FL and it's too hot to turn on the oven. It so happens that last time we went to their home, they served crudites. A really nice assortment that I don't want to compete with. Sigh. Now I'm thinking stuffed dates (with cream cheese flavored with orange zest, some rolled in nuts, dip a few in chocolate, some plain), maybe an assortment in lieu of the deviled eggs??
  9. Snowbird friends whom we haven't seen in a year are stopping at our home on their way to meet another couple about an hour farther north of us. They are meeting the other couple for lunch at noon. They will be at our home for only an hour, arriving at 10AM and leaving for their lunch engagement around 11AM. We will get together for a longer visit and a meal in a few weeks. They are stopping now as they have a item for me that they were so kind to buy on a recent trip to Guatemala. Plus they have never seen our home, which we bought 2 years ago. I am used to offering food whenever we have expected guests...it was how I was brought up (first generation Americans who were poor but always had food for guests). But 10AM is such an odd time. I am thinking of making some deviled eggs. And I'd like one more plate, but can't think of something else that is make-ahead that would complement the eggs. The wife is a vegetarian (but eats eggs, obviously). Suggestions would be most welcome!
  10. I hate to throw away food, but also wouldn't put too much effort and other ingredients to try to 'fix' something. But I'd give it a shot as either a rillette or maybe this pork butter from James Beard Foundation? Pork Butter Recipe
  11. Anyone attempt this? Recommendation on lighter weight models to ease DIY installation? DH is willing to have a go at this project (he's pretty handy around the house), but research finds many of these are super heavy and not a one-man job due to its weight. We prefer a ductless island hood that has charcoal filters. We are not heavy users of our island cooktop (we prefer grilling outdoors to sauteeing or pan-frying indoors), but want to remove food odors since our kitchen/living area is open. We were very pleased with a charcoal filter wall hood at our last home, which DH installed. It was ductless and not heavy, and easy to install. However, I am having a hard time finding island model that touts easy DIY installation. Wondering if others have experience or advice. I realize many have strong opinions on ducted hoods vs. ductless, but DH is NOT going to install ductwork, etc. and again, we were quite happy with a ductless charcoal filter hood in another house.
  12. If I'm making something intensive or tricky, or following a new recipe, I'll play instrumentals. Often it'll be flamenco guitar as these days I am into Spanish foods. When I'm cooking foods I've made before it's usually Diana Krall or Sinatra. My husband and I often cook together and we both like that sort of music....sets the mood for a romantic meal.
  13. I found this at GE website so I guess mine is within range (hidden element). My last electric oven had a visible bottom element so guess that's why this one seems oh-so-slow to me. Electric Ovens with Hidden Bake Elements and Gas Ovens can take 15-20 minutes to preheat Electric Ovens with Hidden Bake and the Fast Preheat feature can take 7-10 minutes. Ovens with a visible bottom bake element can take 5-10 minutes to preheat
  14. Duh. Yes, you're right! I haven't owned a 'real' oven since 2003, when we retired. Since then I've owned a 1927 Garland gas range and a Mabe gas stove (made in Mexico). Back to my current appliance: when I start the oven, the cover over the bottom element gets warm, so it's working. Though to find out if both of the elements are working correctly may require a service call. Or maybe I'll just putz around the kitchen while the oven preheats. Once heated, the oven performs well, holds its temperature, etc.
  15. After reading about your burned out bottom element, I opened our oven doors. And again, this is a double wall oven....and there is NO bottom element in either oven! Just a single upper/broiler element in each oven. Now I wonder if that's the reason it takes so long to preheat?? BTW, i always use an oven thermometer...well ever since our oven in Mexico which had NO thermostat (this is common in even the 'better' ovens there).
  16. We inherited a GE Profile electric double wall oven (with convection option) when we bought our current home. I have not owned an electric oven in a few decades and when I owned my last one we were working 60 hour weeks and rarely turned the oven on, so I don't remember how long it took to preheat. Not sure how old our current oven is; guessing between 5 and 7 years. This wall oven takes 20 minutes to preheat to 350 degrees (not in convection mode). That seems awfully slow to me, though patience is not one of my virtues.
  17. We eat as local as we can. We mix it up....from street food to small "mom and pop" eateries, to a few meals at posh places. We tend to read a lot of restaurant reviews before we start our journey and also rely on recommendations of well-traveled friends whose palates we trust. In addition to restaurants, we ALWAYS go to grocery stores, from high end to bodegas. Our souvenirs for friends (and ourselves) are almost always bought at grocery stores. We also visit as many bakeries as we can as both of us appreciate a treat with our morning coffee. Savory bakery items make good 'car food' when driving between travel destinations. On longer trips, we inevitably get a pizza at some point, maybe it's our form of homesickness. We've had many an interesting pizza over the years.
  18. Thanks, Jason! It's a very short trip, just 3 days. While I may not make it to the specific eateries in your articles, your explanations of the various foods of PR are invaluable in understanding the local cuisine.
  19. Resurrecting this thread as we are heading to Old San Juan soon. Any recommendations for dining?
  20. This is such a rookie question, I should be embarrassed. But it's been a long time since I bought bone-in chicken parts. I bought bone-in skin-on chicken thighs his morning (Saturday) that I plan to make for dinner on Monday. The sell-by date on the package is exactly a week from today, but I'd never dream of keeping them in the fridge that long before cooking. How long do you keep cut-up bone-in chicken parts in the fridge after purchase?
  21. I have eaten it here in FL restaurants and it is delicious! I have not seen it for sale at markets here, but have not specifically sought it out. I have not seen it on local menus recently (past several months) and it may be seasonal. I googled and found many articles about hogfish fishing restrictions due to over-fishing, but not sure of its current status in FL.
  22. Rather than getting out a pan, I decided to test the theory that you can toast nuts in a microwave. I figured they'd get hot and steamy but not taste toasted. I threw a handful of large pecan pieces onto a paper plate and zapped them for almost 2 minutes, then let them cool before throwing them into a couscous salad. They tasted toasted, which was a nice surprise.
  23. Thanks to both of you!
  24. I over-bought at an Italian deli a few weeks ago, including a 1/2 pound of (what was then) freshly made pappardelle pasta. I threw it in the freezer and now wonder whether before I boil it, I should: a) thaw it first b) just throw it still frozen, into the boiling water c) doesn't matter, either way is ok
  25. I have had success in grilling rabbit, but yes, it can dry out in a flash. I guess I've been lucky as I don't use a thermometer on it as I find it's too bony to get a good 'read', but maybe that's just me. I brine my rabbit for about 4 hours. I have also substituted rabbit in ersatz coq au vin, though I cut the marinade time down from overnight to a few hours since the pieces are so much smaller and less meaty than chicken.
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