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Everything posted by gulfporter

  1. I think it's the cheese. I tried to upscale my Mother's mac n cheese recipe by using fancier cheeses, but it's never as smooth as hers. She used Kraft White American. It really does melt down nicely.
  2. We lived in Mexico for 5 years and bought a lot of tomatillos. Simply remove the husks and wipe off the sticky stuff with damp dish towel. In addition to savory recipes, I used them as a base for a version of mincemeat pie, along with apples and raisins. Tomatillos are quite acidic and they worked well in that recipe.
  3. Pfeffernusse. Trader Joes's are good, as are many that you can find at bakeries, especially a German bakery.
  4. I like garlic aioli or chipotle mayo. If you've never had a fried green tomato BLT, please try one! Heavenly! We recently moved to an 'Old" Florida small town and there are 3 restaurants that serve FGT in various forms. The BLT; a FGT grilled cheese; and an FGT omelet are the ones we like best.
  5. Chocolate bark recipe I use is: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/french-chocolate-bark-recipe.html I also make truffles, using various coatings for both taste and good display. Buckeyes (peanut butter balls dipped in dark chocolate) look best if 1/2 are plain and 1/2 have a walnut piece on top. Also chocolate covered coffee beans. And, if available chocolate covered pomegranate seeds. The key to all these candies is using good quality ingredients since there are few ingredients in each recipe.
  6. We will be in Spain for 3 weeks at the end of this month. We will divide our time between Sevilla, Cordoba and Granada. Anyone have a recommendation for sweet shops in any of these cities....looking for gifts for my sweet-toothed friends. We have traveled elsewhere and Spain and everyone loved the St. Teresa "Eggs" from Avila and of course the turrons (nougats) which should be everywhere since Christmas is coming up. Wondering if there are specific local sweets I should look for on this trip?
  7. Someone gave me a bottle and I use it sparingly in baked beans and bbq sauce.
  8. I think in most families, each child has their favorite birthday cake flavor. Mine was a Duncan Hines White Cake mix with homemade peanut butter frosting. My DH's was German Chocolate Cake. What was yours, growing up?
  9. Have not bought them, either dry or jarred. The neighborhood bars in the Italian part of Scranton, PA, served them hot with a heavy dose of salt as bar food. You'd 'score' the skin with your teeth, then squeeze with fingers and slip out the edible part into your mouth, discarding the outer skin. Last year in Barcelona, they were served as a cold tapas with a drizzle of olive oil, but were already skinned and ready to eat.
  10. gulfporter

    Salted chilis

    Mmmmm....salted chilies. Surprised I haven't stumbled across them before; we're both a couple of chili-heads. In googling, the most referenced recipe is that of Fuchsia Dunlop's, link here courtesy of the LA Times. There is no mention of siphoning off any accumulated juices. Is the basic recipe similar to the one you're using? FWIW, I have made preserved lemons and limes which is a similar process of salting and waiting; I do not remove any accumulating juices in those recipes. http://articles.latimes.com/2010/may/20/food/la-fo-congeereca-20100520
  11. Dinner last night.....homemade Banh Mi sandwiches (I even made the baguettes) with '33' beers. Sorry no pics! Shelby...Happy BD....40, cripes you're just a kid!
  12. In my husband's family, it's creamed onions. For my family (I'm first generation from Lithuania), it's fresh kielbasa. Yes we have turkey, but also the kielbasa. What's your family's one must-have Turkey Day menu item?
  13. I appreciate all the ideas here, especially freezing the meals in baggies. My 90 y/o FIL has a caregiver who makes his meals, but we visit for a week every 6-8 weeks to give her a break and we always leave some meals behind in the freezer. Those bulky storage containers really take up a lot of room in his freezer compartment.
  14. Looks cumbersome. Anyone actually tried it out?
  15. Hate microwaves and won't use them. Love my gas grill....we live in central FL and the grill is three steps out the kitchen door; it heats up far quicker than the oven. Anything bread-y, I reheat on the gas grill....from pizza to savory croissants to flatbreads to spanakopita to naan. The gas grill (mine is well seasoned) adds a bit of smokiness to the leftover. For lunch today I reheated leftover 'delivery' calzone on the grill. Anything 'wet,' I heat up on the stove-top. Rarely do I reheat in the oven as I find it dries most leftovers.
  16. I agree that it all depends on one's local offerings. When we lived in Central Mexico, we were surrounded by farms that grew produce for export; while some of it (including tomatoes) were shipped 'green' to the US and CDN, the ripe stuff was sold dirt cheap to us locals. When we lived in a small isolated mountain town in Arizona, pickin's were slim for local produce most of the time. Currently we are in Central Coastal Florida where the local food producers are constantly selling new items all year round; we have two very large weekly food markets in downtown St. Petersburg and in Gulfport that allow us to eat local without much effort on our part. In northern climates, this would simply not be as feasible.
  17. I've always zapped honey in the microwave, at 50-70% until barely warm, but flowing easier. Never had sugar crystals.
  18. I keep coffee beans in freezer, removing as needed. I also freeze butter until needed; when I remove it, I keep it in a pottery dish on the counter (other than in the hottest months). I stopped refrigerating eggs when we moved to Mexico; on my first grocery trip there, I hunted and hunted for eggs, until I found them on pallets, stacked in the bakery department. However, if they're out on my counter for a week, I move them to the fridge. I've never refrigerated onions or potatoes; growing up they were always kept in a dark cupboard so I do the same. My DH insists on refrigerating ketchup, mustard, jelly/jam because that's the way he was raised; I think a lot of what we chill is what our mothers did and it's a carryover from childhood.
  19. I'll list this as "new to me." This quail egg cutter works well and is a terrific time/stress saver. http://www.amazon.com/Seki-Quail-Egg-Shell-Cutter/dp/B000AR2J5M/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1412790286&sr=8-1&keywords=quail+egg+cutter
  20. I use dried fruits and nuts when I make mole'. I freeze leftover bits and pieces of the fruits and nuts that accumulate over time from other recipes, then add whatever I have to my next mole'. We lived in Central Mexico for 5 years where I wrote a recipe column in a monthly expat magazine using local ingredients from our local tianguis (open air market). I was lucky to meet and have lunch with Diana Kennedy. While her cookbook recipes are specific and detailed, she readily admits that Mexican home cooks tend to use 'what's available.' I can attest to that as when I would meet and talk to the local women in our village about recipes, there was rarely any measuring device in their kitchens, nor did they ever seem to make the same exact recipe twice!
  21. Love the convenience of their frozen crushed garlic cubes (plain and with basil); imported from Israel. They thaw quickly and are great for a quick vinaigrette. None of that funky aftertaste like the jars of crushed garlic. Also in love with their meringue cookies of various flavors. Way better quality and low price compared to those found in most groceries. My nearest TJs now is almost an hour away, but there is a new one slated for opening later this year within 15 minutes from me. Yippee!!!
  22. My sweet treat is often accompanied by a 'short' sherry or port.....shhhhhhhhhhh, our little secret!
  23. I have to work hard to maintain my weight (I went from a size 14 to a size 8 about 15 years ago and have kept the weight off). I find the best solution for desserts is portion control. I don't make 'low fat, low sugar' recipes; I make the most luscious recipes I can find. BUT, but I only allow myself a tablespoon of mousse; a slice of pie the equivalent of 1/32 a pie. When I make panna cotta, I use wide shot glasses; when I cut brownies, they're never more than 1" squares. I freeze leftovers and only thaw a few portions at a time. I eat desserts/sweets just a few times a week and usually mid-afternoon, then take a nice long walk (I average 2 miles a day walking). That's what works for me, YMMV.
  24. Most of the splatter occurs when it's on the side-burner and lands on an adjacent bougainvillea, which doesn't seem to mind too terribly
  25. But won't hot stuff (like your candy) melt the wax in the wax paper??
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