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    Adrian, MI

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  1. Also, what was with that pronunciation of "degustation" - I didn't know what she was saying, either, and I studied French for seven years in addition to being a foodie. Ugh. Mostly I'm watching it to kill time before Wire in the Blood comes on on Sunday nights.
  2. Ah, I was rereading one of Marcella Hazan's books and was reminded of something I learned some time ago but had forgotten in my time of no cooking: How to make absolutely the best green salad, in my opinion. It's very simple; you put the leaves in a bowl, then add your salt first. After that, some extra-virgin olive oil, and then your vinegar, and then pepper if you like. When I first read about this I thought there was no way it could make such a difference, but for me at least it's worlds better than making a vinaigrette. Easier, too, for everyday salads with (or as) dinner. Frequently I toss in some blue cheese and apples, or some other veg, or some nuts, but the point's the same: salt first! then oil, then vinegar. I feel the need to wander out to the garden and cut myself some lettuce now.
  3. Yeah, our supermarkets here don't carry gorgonzola. I think I'll just use lots more of the ordinary blue next time. I'm making steak with blue cheese sauce tomorrow to fix my craving issue... heh.
  4. Oh, what a great thread. I have to admit I've been avoiding cooking (my mom passed away in November and I've been that kind of depressed where you avoid even things you know would cheer you up), but I looked here and so many things sounded so good.... I made the tomato-gorgonzola pasta today and I have to admit I was a little disappointed. Perhaps the blue cheese I used (just some generic type DH found at the store) wasn't potent enough; I was expecting more of a blue-savory taste. It will have to be made again, and soon, though.
  5. When I was growing up, we only had Velveeta occasionally because, for some reason, it's not cheap. Well, not cheap enough. But my mom made open-faced Velveeta sandwiches similar to those mentioned above: Sliced Velveeta on white toast, topped with onion salt, then broiled 'til there was a puddle of melted goo inside a skin. I love to eat that still and will buy a block of Velveeta to have it. I also enjoy the dip, although not with chili - salt overload, and I drink pickle juice from the jar. I prefer it with salsa, as much as it resembles particularly unattractive vomit during the melting process. It is tasty but I think it's one of those things with crack in it; I don't enjoy it that much past a few bites but will keep eating it anyway. I've made it with homemade salsa (don't like canned or jarred salsas much and so more usually have homemade on hand) and it just isn't the same. I also enjoy it in grilled cheese occasionally but don't really care for it any other way. I remember I would eat slices of it when I was little. I tried that a few months ago and just... no. I also dislike using it for mac and cheese, because I prefer my mac and cheese with lumps of cheese and stringy melty bits rather than a cheese sauce.
  6. Maggie, a heartwarming story and well told. Kerry, your point about needing to feed others really hit home. My own mother has been very ill and accumulating fluid in her abdomen, and has not been eating. I am not there with her but I call frequently and it's so reassuring when I hear she's eaten something, like everything is a little better somehow. My strongest desire is to go cook food that she would want to eat. Personally, I love toast and can't get enough of it. My favorite is buttered toast with marmalade and a cup of tea with milk, no sugar. My grandma used to make us "cheese bread", which was untoasted white bread topped with slices of colby cheese and toasted in the oven. My mother's version was Velveeta bread - toast a slice of white bread and top with Velveeta and onion powder, then put in the oven until the inside of the Velveeta melts and forms that skin to hold it all together. I suppose that's the really low-rent version of Welsh rarebit, eh?
  7. Thank you all for the advice. Detroit is at a disadvantage since I don't have friends or family to visit there, but it's certainly not too far away. Perhaps a trip to Ypsi/AA is in order in the next couple of weeks.
  8. David, I have hot hands too (much to my chagrin when I try to make bread; I inevitably add too much flour because the dough gets too sticky, and the loaf is... eeeeh). In the winter it's not as much of a problem since I keep the heat low, but in the summer I sometimes soak my (clean!) fingertips in the ice water for the crust to cool them off before I start. Then just work quickly. I think it's so much fun, when the dough feels like crumbly sand. At least you can get fresh halibut. Here in small-town Michigan my fish selection is nonexistent. I need to learn to fish; at least then I can maybe catch some... bass? trout? Don't really know what's around here. That dinner looked delicious. The only fish I've had lately has been IQF cod which smells fishy even when FROZEN. As for cleaning the grease off the metal: I don't have a Showtime rotisserie, but can you remove the metal parts? If so I find that making a paste of washing soda and water is pretty good for removing grease from things like broiler pans, so maybe that would work.
  9. Wonderful blog. I've never been to the Pacific NW but really want to visit, and this just provides encouragement. I just did a rhubarb custard pie on Sunday, like some others mentioned - just like a clafoutis in a pie dish. I may have missed it, but do you macerate the cherries before placing them in the shell? I always do pie crust by hand (not with a cutter) and with straight butter. I've convinced myself that pressing the butter into small sheet-like pieces coated in flour results in wonderful flakiness, and I have been pleased by the tenderness. I haven't actually ever tried Crisco in a crust but perhaps I will soon. I do almost a 1:1 ratio of butter to flour (by weight), with a little pinch of salt and enough ice cold water to hold it. Here where I live in Michigan I haven't seen any local cherries yet, but they should be in soon. All the cherries in the store are from California.
  10. jeniac42

    Doritos X-13D

    We picked up a bag of these at the store about two weeks ago. The first one I ate was pretty tasty, and then I ate three more and was done with the flavor forever. I think it says something that my fiance took the leftover 3/4 of a bag to work - a shop full of hungry guys - and the bag is still sitting there half full. Bleargh.
  11. As some of you already know, I recently moved to Adrian, MI from Pittsburgh. I've been having a hard time adapting to my grocery shopping situation here; I can't even buy a tub of Thai curry or fish sauce at a reasonable price ($3 for a 4oz bottle of fish sauce? are you kidding me?). I do plan to stock up on a few things when I go back to Pittsburgh, and when we make it to Chicago, but there has to be a better solution. We haven't had the time or money to make it up to Ann Arbor, but when we do, I'd like to know where to go shopping. Are there any Asian grocery stores? What about cheesemongers? (Here I can get President brie and that's about it.) Any treasures I should know about? And in case you find yourself trapped in Adrian, there's a reasonably decent butcher (Rosier's). The meat is good, but I ran into trouble asking them to cut things for me and/or special order things like pork bellies for bacon. Still, better than Meijer or Country Market (which doesn't even have a staffed counter). Help me not miss the Strip District in Pittsburgh so much!
  12. I don't know why I never thought of making packets in bulk and freezing them. I've never done much packet cooking, but it now strikes me as a great idea. If the cooked rice develops a nice crusty texture, it seems like this could be a good idea for utterly bastardized dolsot bibimbap (for lack of a better name); if I could adapt my usual recipe from the Orange Page with gochujang, soy, sesame oil, mirin, chile flakes, meat and some veg to a freezable packet state, I'd be a very happy camper. We get our CSA box tonight. I'll have to see if there's anything in there to go with the meats I've already got to make up into packets. Thanks for the thread full of great ideas (again)!
  13. I've been craving takoyaki at least once a day for the past year or so. I haven't been able to get any where I am. The other day, I was watching TV and lo and behold, I see an ad for The Pancake Puff which looks for all the world like a takoyaki pan. At $20 it seems like a good value compared to the pans I have found on the internet, but I just don't know. Check out some of the suggested uses for the Pancake Puff! Sure is... interesting. Need to find some takoyaki now....
  14. Wonderful blog! I wish I'd seen it before I went to San Diego around, oh, 2001. I had a hard time finding places to eat, although I stayed in the Marriott hotel and enjoyed a damn fine and fairly cheap pastry that seemed to be some kind of almond cake soaked in honey and covered in chocolate. And I think your weight loss is a tremendous achievement. I've been trying to follow WW on and off, and have definitely fallen OFF - I know what you mean about a slip here, a slip there, and then, whoops! suddenly I'm eating everything I can get my hands on. Looking forward to reading the rest....
  15. Sriracha Jamaican Hellfire Crystal Chipotles en adobo Kochujang
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