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Everything posted by SLB

  1. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/06/dining/indian-pickle-queen-usha-prabakaran.html?fbclid=IwAR2AyZ9A2QtSrd_MyLEJ8TmP0lJ0mc_LtF65N4SV9nzjPYcPYiGeEHBlDRE We need more from this woman!
  2. A few years ago I was into baking bread, and had been making my way through "The Bread Bible" when my routine blood tests revealed that it was time to stop eating so much bread. I had also been using Rose Levy Berenbaum's pre-ferment prescription to adjust bread recipes from other breads to incorporate a pre-ferment. Her pre-ferment prescription involves some of the flour; part of the yeast; and all of the water. Altho I've cut WAAY back on bread, in general I've been using the pre-ferment method with any yeast breads, including vaguely sweet breads. So, I'm making a cinnamon bun recipe for a Christmas brunch (I have no other cooking obligations!); the recipe involves two rises. Is there any reason not to do a pre-ferment when the liquid is milk, and not water? I'm sorry to ask a question that may be incredibly rudimentary to accomplished bakers, but I really have no idea!
  3. So, I routinely heavily-salt meat a day or two in advance of cooking it, per Judy Rodgers' formulas. But -- there's no advantage to doing this to meat that is going to be poached, right??? We're talking about chicken, here. I occasionally poach otherwise-unsalted chicken in heavily salted water with an eye toward shredding for fillings. But here I'm making the Eastern-Carolina variation on chicken-n-dumplings (which is known as "Chicken-pastry"); so the water is going to become the broth-basis of everything. Given that, I'm not inclined to heavily-salt it for the poach of thick chunks of meat, I'd salt it for vegetable-additions with an expectation that everything is going to be consumed together. But unless the water is salted roughly equally to the meat, any pre-salting of the meat is going to be leeched into the broth, leaving the meat tasting basically wherever it was to begin with, right? Maybe the texture will be different, but I never was pre-salting for texture . . . . I think I better just follow the recipe, and not worry about bland meat. I am tired. This feels like something that should not be so hard to figure out. But -- I am tired.
  4. SLB

    Lawry's Seasoned Salt

    It was the ONLY seasoning in use in my childhood besides regular salt and pepper. Oh wait, and paprika on the devilled eggs. Basically, every.single.thing tasted like lawry's. So, basically I hate it and haven't touched the stuff in over thirty years. It's a ferocious prejudice, I really should force myself to give it a fair taste.
  5. Got it. Shelby mentioned this guy in response to someone's query on ducks: https://honest-food.net/ And he has a podcast that I'm now listening to, which featured a great episode on salami basics and another on curing whole chunks; and then I went hunting the threads on the subject, which brought me here. Definitely no pressure on the documentation project! But know that I'm rooting for you and everybody this winter. Happy Solstice, peeps, and good eating.
  6. Can anybody point me to this thread? @DiggingDogFarm?
  7. "I dunno. Habit I suppose. ☺️ Or maybe I was a butcher in my past life and I have a strong attachment to that white butcher paper......." Interesting! I myself love butcher paper, and loved using my fake-origami skills to get all the meat surfaces covered. And my hardware store dude seemed intrigued that I, perhaps alone in all of NYC, purchased freezer tape. And also I love sharpies. But then I bought a foodsaver.
  8. Hey Shelby -- why don't you vac-seal your ground meat?
  9. This is Me. Everything about is so . . . encouraging, or something. Plus: The Food.
  10. I don't really know HOW I could've left off yeast breads or vanilla.
  11. Meat fat. Almost any meat fat. Dairy fat. Non-meat/non-dairy fats with a taste. [Not all of them are true "favorite", but any of them would be used rather than no-fat at all. I recognize that this is a different question, but . . . .] ONION. MUSHROOM. Salt (I can hear the critique of this choice, but I'm standing by it). Pickle. Orange. The bite of mustard greens. [I think this bite is in other greens too, but it is perfection in mustard greens.] Hot peppers. Basic, good ole' cayenne might be my favorite, honestly.
  12. I totally understand why Chum wanted to stay home for a day with the Shelby and the Franzia, sigh. Also, I think I could come too, and we would all get along famously.
  13. I've been kind of behind all over, so I probably just missed it. I'm raising my glass to you over here, in support and solidarity and [huntin']-seasonal gladness!
  14. Very excited for this. But -- Shelby, why can't you eat lettuce?
  15. SLB


    Wonderful little podcast from the Southern Foodways Alliance: https://www.southernfoodways.org/gravy/ Two especially wonderful episodes: Community canneries: https://www.southernfoodways.org/gravy/preserving-community-canneries/ Co-op extensions on Native American reservations: https://www.southernfoodways.org/gravy/access-denied-cooperative-extension-and-tribal-lands/ [Food aside -- that last one featured an EXCELLENT use of "carpetbag", the verb.] Enjoy.
  16. Also, in my experience not every butternut squash in the world is all that sweet. To be sure -- they're all sweeter than summer squash. But I have found that if I buy them too early in the fall they are comparatively bland. Or something. I'm not totally sure if it's a timing thing, actually, that could've been my attempt to make sense of a boring vegetable dish. But. I've gotten some that seem like they aren't worth what it took to peel 'em. Just sayin'.
  17. Well. I see your point, but I assume that the craft cocktail was designed/invented to do something creative on the palate. And I'm up there asking a thousand questions about how much simple -- no, really, how much -- and trying to get at, fifty-leven different ways, whether it tastes sweet or just kinda pings sweet. It's one thing to say, please leave off the sugar rim. But I get all up into the components, and I could see how this could be, possibly, beyond the pale. Because one thing is clear: the general public likes their drinks sweet. The bar is not wrong or anything.
  18. To be clear -- I definitely would expect to pay the stated price for the bleu-cheese burger. As I said, I actually wouldn't order the bleu-cheese burger without the bleu cheese, because that was the whole notion (in the same vein, I don't order the radishes-n-butter at Prune without the butter, you know? It's a *thing* she's doing there. A simple thing. But a *thing*.). But that point has been made here, repeatedly. I have actually seen people try to not pay for what they didn't want. I once saw someone try to not pay for something she didn't eat. I do not think this is acceptable behavior, myself, but there are a lot of interesting forms of self-regard out there . . . . This conversation has made me rethink the one place where I have historically felt complete license making demands: cocktails. Many if not most craft cocktail creations are too sweet for me, notwithstanding the bartender's insistence that they are "balanced". (Note: the default sweet note goes WAY UP the further South you are drinking). When I go out, tho, I usually want something other than a classic drink that I could make quite competently at home; I want to try what the bar has created. But the truth is, I want to try it not-too-sweet, and usually have a whole conversation with the bartender about sweetness and options. Which is actually awfully presumptuous! And probably kind of annoying, particularly where I'm not already a known customer. I may need to rethink that.
  19. I'm hazarding a guess, but is this place an Alinea-style situation? Does it not make a difference? Obvs it matters that you're a *regular*; but does the genre of dining experience count in terms of when it's appropriate or not to ask for rye toast instead of the yucky bun? I've been to Alinea twice, and both times it was more of an immersive-art experience than a menu-type situation. It just seems not really feasible to be working around all of those dishes every whichaway. I realize that Weinoo said he doesn't go to restaurants for art; but nevertheless I think that's where they aim at Alinea. I would not say the same for Spotted Pig, for what that's worth. Although I probably would not order a stylized bleu-cheese burger without the bleu cheese, myself. In part because I'm kind of cheap, and wouldn't pay for a gastropub creation that I wasn't actually interested in. Which brings up an interesting question: does one pay for the bleu cheese if you ask that it be withheld?
  20. Indeed. I'm very fond of Burlington. Honestly, it was the kraut at Farmhouse (served with their housemade brats) that made me decide that I needed some of my own at the house.
  21. Right now I'm mostly committed to Vermont Creamery after being holed up in Vermont for work for a couple of years which coincided with a nod from Dorie Greenspan. If I have it, I use the "lightly salted" for smearing and eating, and the unsalted for all other situations. I actually don't bake with it because I'm not a super experienced baker, and my understanding is that the european-style high-fat butters can confound old US recipes, and I have no idea how to adjust. So for baking I use Cabot Creamery unsalted, unless I'm sure the higher-fat butter is not going to put some wrench in things I'm supposed to know how to adjust for. (Can you spot my fondness for a particular state?) Truthfully, I'm interested in supporting the New England dairies generally, including the Hudson Valley folks. (Ronnybrook, for example, is pretty widely available in NYC, and it's the only milk that I think is drinkable. I don't really drink milk often, though, so it's mostly all about the cream). But we were talking about butter. For years I bought Kerrygold exclusively, until I realized that it just did not make sense to import my basic butter when I live down-valley from some seriously extraordinary dairies. I'm a globalist, but not with that quality of local option alongside that kind of carbon footprint. But, sigh. I do love me some Kerrygold.
  22. When I was a teenager, a little girl I babysat had a milk allergy, and died after two bites of restaurant oatmeal which her mother had been assured had been made without milk. Specifically, she died of anaphylactic shock in the car where her parents were racing to a hospital. I found out the very next day, when the mom came into the bank where I worked (back then, teenagers had jobs, including jobs in places like the small neighborhood bank). I had enough home-training not to say anything abusive like, what the hell were you doing in a restaurant with such a severe food allergy??? But ever since then, I've always thought that a known lethal allergy is just not something you can safely bring into a restaurant (especially if you'd like to eat something that is typically made with the forbidden ingredient). Call it trauma. I never got over the image in my mind of that mom in that car. I appreciate where Achatz is coming from. That was the most distressing shiva call I have ever paid, and it was a good 33 years ago.
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