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Everything posted by SLB

  1. Any updates on this topic? I've decided to up my fish game, and while I have a number of good seafood recipes, I realize that I don't own a central reference book on the topic besides Bittman's "Fish", which even he has distanced himself from. On the Peterson book that several folks have noted, the phrase upthread "I keep it in my car", from @memesuze twelve years ago -- well, that might be the most powerful commendation I've ever seen for a cookbook.
  2. @JoNorvelleWalker, coming at it from the back, I put the arms through first (specifically through the bottom opening of the pinafore straps-hole), and then slip the middle hole over my head holding the tops of the the pinafore straps. For what that's worth . . . .
  3. I mean, Eater on it. https://www.eater.com/2019/4/11/18251508/kitchen-apron-brands-best-shopping
  4. I like aprons, and have several (including that Rough Linen pinafore, I like it for summertime and it's super comfortable, but am anxious that it's just not durable and also, sigh, the staining in non-bleachable pale is more than I can take.). I actually recently decided that I just couldn't buy anymore until a couple get so stained they're ready for the rag pile. My main thing is that they be lightweight, I feel like heavier cottons feel like real weight on my neck after awhile. Those cross-back aprons are supposed to mitigate this, but with the exception of the pinafore which just slips on, I can't deal with cross-back straps that have to be tied. I like the saturated colors at Hedley & Bennett, and they make nice gifts; but the price point can start to feel crazy for workhorse aprons. That said, they do list the weights of their aprons, which I find valuable. Someone was looking for a longer apron, I have one by "AOSbySosa" that was on clearance at "Kitchen Art & Letters". It's made of tablecloth material and is very stain resistant, but since it looks kind of fancy I ended up cutting off some of the length to make into more of a dress apron. I totally understand the negative association with our moms and grandmas in the aprons. For whatever reason my mom and grandma wore housecoats instead of aprons, which I guess are conceptually like chef's jackets except longer and more flouncy and just awful, especially the plaid ones, and which I found relentlessly hideous and somehow connected (at least on my mom's part) to this incomprehensible refusal to use the dishwasher, and also the unmistakable mark of general domestic misery. I would never go near a housecoat if my life depended on it. But I put on an apron almost as soon as I walk in the house in the evening, every single day. Funny.
  5. I have the exact same reaction to pasta. In fact, I sometimes eat pasta to facilitate my going to sleep.
  6. Here's a followup from The Atlantic: https://www.theatlantic.com/letters/archive/2019/03/readers-share-their-lunch-routines/584815/?utm_campaign=the-atlantic&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook&utm_term=2019-03-18T18%3A08%3A48&utm_content=edit-promo&fbclid=IwAR13SbgJ39hoqboY4UpeVlSKt-QN725UCIUqBgWLa0SiFaee5BOreckUr3k&fbclid=IwAR2N06bUhjjl8eToHdHL_0A7NrO2_oWDCy7phbUYSh97Ty90tzvupn3IXHI I think what's most striking to me is just how little people seem to be eating for lunch. I am one of these people who needs a big lunch. And a pretty big breakfast, honestly. I do enjoy a comparatively light dinner (at home), but a small lunch would demolish my whole possibility for the afternoon.
  7. I found a 3 lb "boneless shoulder roast" in my freezer, and I think I'm going to corn it. It's late, but I've been out of town and, what the heck, better late than never. I've never corned beef before; always bought it prepared. When I'm brining pork or turkey, I will usually put the meat into the brine frozen, and let it thaw in the brine. But no one would consider my brines technically correct by any measure . . . I'm planning to use a real corn recipe; but is there any reason not to start with frozen meat when corning beef? Assuming it's ok -- maybe add a day or two? On Edit: Nevermind. I'm just going to thaw it.
  8. I knew someone who grew up without running water either, and he couldn't STAND to see people let the tap run. My own father, who grew up, uh, *farm-to-table*, was super-harsh on us if we left even a scrap of meat on the chicken bones. Anyway, back to the new baseline. I forgot about something else I love/need: my automatic icemaker, which I don't think is hard to plumb. I could go back to ice trays. But I don't want to. [Please understand -- I don't use air-conditioning in the summer; which is to say, I drink A LOT of ice-water.]
  9. I second the window. A big window nearby but not exactly in the kitchen is ok. Probably better, because then the breeze from the window does not blow cold air over your stove-top situation, including the flames arising in a chimney effect off of your open burners . . . . My personal need, tho, is for the sink/stove/main-prep-counter/garbage can to be all in the same small radius. By small radius, I mean like three steps. I once lived in an apartment where the prep counter was across an unnecessarily large room from the sink, which was itself located near the only plugs, and I was routinely homicidal. This was when I realized I prefer, strongly, small galley kitchens designed by people who actually cook. I think an actual bona fide pantry is dreamy, and I now think it's essential in my next home. But actually, as I write this, I realize that there is only one truth about me: unless and until I go off-grid, I am never living again without a dishwasher. I put off getting one because I am cheap. And as turned out, I now feel that it has improved my life beyond my wildest dreams. I still can't quite believe I have one and I get kookily-happy every time I turn it on.
  10. I sat and read through the book while dining at the bar at French Louie, and it was an enjoyable book! I don't really have ANY MORE real estate that can be given over to cookbooks, particularly since I was kind of saving a spot for that new Noma book. But I kinda want this one. I'm picking it up from the library today so I guess I'll make the decision within a couple of weeks.
  11. Me neither. My lunches are almost always some collected mess of various scraps from prior dinners. I used to have a quote of Nigella Lawson's on my fridge that went something like: "I like repetition, and if something tastes good, I eat it often."
  12. I once threw a New Year's Day jam for 10 people that ended up with a day-of situation involving me: shopping for part of the meal; cleaning the greens; cooking the entire meal (including the black eyed peas AND the smoked neckbone stock for the greens); cleaning the disaster that was the house; and managing a hangover from New Year's Eve that somehow took me by surprise and which was enhanced by sleep deprivation, since I had to rise earlier than desired in order to deal with the aforementioned aspects. All in time for the actual dinner. I have never been in so much food-based pain in my life. I don't know WHAT I was thinking; the point when things went awry was when I decided to go out the night before, instead of staying home and maybe, you know, doing the cleaning? Or, perhaps, finishing the shopping? The only thing that I did in advance was season the chicken for frying and the beef filet for roasting. I kept adjusting the menu to account for the fact that I couldn't get it all cooked. And, sigh, there was no salad whatsoever. I just couldn't manage to clean the lettuce. The food to the guests was very good-tasting, although at some point the elder on site recognized that something was, uh, wrong, and she stopped being a guest and just started cooking. Which humiliated me, since I was kind of aiming to take care of her, for once. Everybody did have fun, and the two-year old kept demanding more chicken, which I took as approval. But y'all, it was awful. I do not recommend this.
  13. SLB

    Pesto Basics

    How long can you, uh, keep good-n-oily pesto in the fridge? Obvs I'm not talking about in your restaurants, I'm talking about at home. Tell the truth, y'all. How long would you keep eating it? Inquiring minds want to know. Well, maybe just this one specific inquiring mind over thisaway who put some very expensive nuts into an aforementioned good-n-oily pesto some months back, and somehow lost it in the back of the bottom shelf, and who really wants to eat it now that it has resurfaced and doesn't seem, you know, off or anything . . . . I mean, did I mention the generous layer of luscious oil? Isn't that a kind of a . . . preserve? Sigh.
  14. First, I like to feel welcome. Not coddled, or even nurtured; but truly welcome within your retail establishment. This is not the same as technically good service, although they are connected. And it's not found as reliably as you might imagine. Second, I like the food to taste delicious. Third, I like for the wait staff to enthusiastically like the food, and to be able to talk about how a dish works (in terms of flavor), and what they like about a dish. Really, enthusiasm is more compelling than literacy, I am fine with pure emotion on the subject. And finally, I like clean. I admit that I'm fine with less-than-perfectly-clean if: (a) I am welcome, and either (b) I am hangry; or (c) all of the delicious food has been fried.
  15. I pulled out some marrow bones yesterday, they are soaking. I am obsessed with this dish at a Brooklyn restaurant which involves marrow and scallops in tacos. So I'm aiming at marrow and black beans in tacos. There are no scallops anywhere near my freezer, but there are a whole lotta black beans up in here.
  16. The Moguettes are gonna cook quickly too, be wary. I found them to be creamier than any cannellini bean I've ever had, and I think they would make an excellent contribution to the soup. I still prefer to soak because -- well, first of all, I soak in brine. But also -- I find that it helps the beans to cook significantly more evenly, which I think matters even more if they're going to be done in less than an hour. That said, I think they would work absolutely fine in the Hazan soup. One thing, @Thanks for the Crepes -- I've only been in the Bean Club for three shipments now, but so far it's been rather a lot of white beans (counting the Flageolets, which perhaps I shouldn't). I was surprised, only because I didn't actually eat too many white beans before, maybe a pound a year. My favorite beans of RGs is the Rebosero. I also think that their Garbanzos are really good, like distinctly good.
  17. You 'n me both, @robirdstyx. But I lurrrvves me a good rabbit hole . . . .
  18. The eggs in the top photo are in a bowl (like a pasta bowl). The bottom two are shown with the eggs flipped in the pan.
  19. So I received one of the Blanc Creatives carbon steel pans as a birthday gift a couple of months ago. The pan is supposed to be "pre-seasoned" with coconut oil, with the encouragement that you use more oil than usual for the first few uses. This is not difficult for me, as I am a high-grease-type cook, eat bacon several days a week, etc. But something very strange is happening when I fry eggs. The pan side of the eggs turns gray and sometimes black. It looks like a stain, not like some chips of the seasoning that can be flaked off. You can't remove the gray-black stuff from the eggs. And just to state the obvious -- nothing from the eggs or butter is burned (although the eggs are pretty hard-fried, I feed someone who likes their eggs fried to an advanced death). The bottom two pictures are actually in the pan, where I'd flipped them. Have any of you ever seen this? What the heck is it??? The folks at blanc creatives have told me to keep doing the salt-oil slurry, but it's not working. It's a beautiful pan, but I can't serve people food that looks like this, even if the gray-whatever is edible. And my cast-iron pans, none of which came into my life pre-seasoned, didn't act like this. And neither did my Matfer pan, which I admittedly don't use too often because it's just too small.
  20. I *always* thought those cooks were rockstars. https://medium.com/@theodoreross/meet-the-short-order-cooks-so-fucking-good-waffle-house-officially-calls-them-rockstars-caf47c31912?fbclid=IwAR1U7rW2z4go4spN89_Oi1Rhymly1Gs9W6JOvr2Q5Z6mOb88T_5iW_pby9M
  21. I'm with Weinoo, I think this list is targeted specifically at millenials, or whatever the current 25-year-olds are called. The clue for me is the baking-heavy (which is how a lot of young people get seduced into the home-version of things). Once that crew subscribes en masse to Fine Cooking, the magazine can keep paying its printing bills, and lure them into the deep dive . . . .
  22. A new and beautiful contender in this class is Whetstone: http://www.whetstonemagazine.com/ On cooking mags, I second the Fine Cooking rec, and I also enjoy Saveur. And I'm with rotuts on the C. Kimball nightmare (even though I learned a fair amount from him over the years). That said -- MilkStreet has a podcast which I listen to; on some level it's less tolerable than the magazine, but on the other hand it's free.
  23. The citrus fruits are coming in here (I mean being imported in), and I'm kind of going nuts with the ideas of stuff to try. I am definitely going to do that preserved-lemon vinaigrette (after I get my preserved lemons done, I mean). But I have a question about a different kind of preservation -- freezing. I freeze vegetables as well as meat, and after I got a deep freezer, I started studying in earnest about how to freeze stuff to best protect its quality (instead of just throwing it in a ziplock bag). The reference books give blanching times for each vegetable, and more pertinent -- headrooms for the bags. The headrooms prescribed for vegetables are about off-gassing (as opposed to the headrooms for fruits, which seem to be about expansion of freezing water). But none of the reference books I have are talking about vacuum-packing the vegetables, just regular bags with most of the air pushed out. I do not have a fancy vacuum-sealer, just a cheapo FoodSaver. The FoodSaver manual instructs to freeze all vegetables solid before sealing them, in order to avoid the challenge of off-gassing after sealing. The question is directed to those of you who freeze vegetables -- is the vacuum sealing worth it, after you take the step to open-air freeze the vegetables? [I'm sure it would be worth it if you have flash-freezing capabilities.]
  24. On blackbirds, he says: "There's a French proverb that goes 'For lack of thrushes, one eats blackbirds.' Forget this proverb; blackbird doesn't tastes great". I'm still stuck on the thrush-melt, tho. Stuck hard.
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