Jump to content

Miss J

legacy participant
  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Posts posted by Miss J

  1. I just had the most beautiful green bean salad with my lunch. It came from a local lunch place, I'll have to find out which and get a recipe. But, I wanted to tell you about it.


    Ladies & gentleman, this is what I love about you all.  :biggrin:

    Obligatory salad comment:

    I had a really lovely plate of gravadlax tinted with beetroot as part of a salad at the Tate Modern this weekend. The fish was typically salmon-orange on one side of each slice, and gradually deepened to a deep beetroot-y red on the other side. Absolutely beautiful, and quite tasty too. It was served with a handful of frisee, a good grind of black pepper and a wee drizzle oil.

  2. On the UK side...

    My favourite chain is Carluccio's Caffe - by at least 700 miles. As far as I know they're just in London at the moment (and already up to 5 locations), but I think there's plans to start opening them across the country.

    The latte Napoli (aromatic, punchy & robust) at the Canary Wharf branch is what get me going most mornings. Takeaway lunches are gorgeous sandwiches on excellent bread, and sit-downs are really decent Italian standbys. And on the nights that I'm leaving work late and have people coming over, I'm not the slightest bit embarrassed to make full use of their deli. (The caponata is really very good indeed, as are the parmesan biscuits.)

    The menu (which doesn't change much) is at www.carluccios.com.

    Miss J

  3. Summery in spite of last night's dismal grey weather:

    Cold chicken slices dressed with Sichuan fish fragrant sauce (chile oil, spring onions, ginger, garlic, soy sauce, sesame oil)

    Flowering broccoli stir-fried with garlic and sesame seeds

    Steamed rice

    Peanuts boiled in aromatic broth

  4. Marmite makes the ultimate eggy bread! I like to make mine into a sandwich before frying. Beautiful! :biggrin:

    Bet it's not as nice with maple syrup, though. :wink:

    Miss J

  5. you cook them until the definition of the constitutive starchy peas breaks up and the result is, well, mushy.

    Yes, I know Gavin. :smile: But to suggest that this means that the peas are overcooked - ie, past the point of cooking that one wants them to be at - is to also suggest that the non-soft state of cooked dried peas is desirable. And I've never seen them used in that form, although I'd be the first to admit that this could well be a huge failing of culinary experience on my part.

    So...is there a use for "undercooked" dried peas? Anyone?

    Miss J

  6. Blue Heron, marrowfat peas are just a particular kind of dried peas. So the tinned peas are instead of reconstituting and then overcooking dried ones.

    Okay, I'll bite - how do you "overcook" dried peas? The only use I've ever seen for dried peas has been in soups, pease porridge or 'mushy' peas, all of which are more starchy than vegetable-y. I've always seen mushy peas as a 'dry' pea soup rather than something overcooked.

    Jinmyo, I'm hanging on breathlessly here. What other uses of dried peas are you withholding from us? :smile:

    Miss J

  7. There's all sorts of things you can do. (I'm assuming that you're dipping your bread in milk and whisked eggs, rather than just eggs - or is this an English variation?) I make this regularly, and have been known use the following variations:

    - vanilla and freshly grated nutmeg (my usual)

    - chopped chives, tabasco, salt & pepper

    - a wee bit of chipotle puree and chopped cilantro

    - a spoonful of amaretto and some orange zest

    - a spoonful of framboise (serve with raspberries)

    - use a bit of creme fraiche in your milk

    I agree with Jay's brioche suggestion, and submit that chollah is also a good choice. Stale bread is preferable, but not entirely essential - I made French toast (as we call it in Canada) this weekend with chollah that was still warm from the bakery, and it was fine. The only difference is that you have to dip quickly and fry right away.

    You can also use wholemeal bread (in thick slices) to make something robust and chewy, in which case choose stronger flavours for your egg mix and accompaniments.

    That said, I usually keep it simple and serve it in typical Canadian stylee with smoked bacon and copious amounts of real maple syrup - a combo that's really hard to beat.

    Miss J

  8. I haven't found any good subsitute for fresh curry leaves (and you're right, the dried ones are dreadful), but we've been very lucky here in the UK ever since Sainsburys started stocking them in their fresh herbs section. I've been buying and freezing them, although I've noticed that the flavour still deteriorates in the freezer after a couple of weeks.

    Now if we could just get them to add holy basil, I'll be completely sorted...  :smile:

    Miss J

  9. Isn't it interesting how two people can view the same subject and have a completely opposite reaction? I've loved Nigella's writing style since I first stumbled across it, while Slater's has always felt a bit overly mate-y. I don't dislike his work, it just doesn't do it for me like Nigella's does.

    Ah, different strokes, etc etc...

    Miss J

  10. I only wish that Mr. de Winter wrote better English. (It's also strange that a web site devoted to design should lay it out in two very long parallel columns which necessitate scrolling back to the top to finish reading it.)

    John, I wondered about the layout as well. Especially as I'd printed the article out to read on the tube on the way home, which meant that I had to read all of one column before flipping back to the beginning so I could start the other. An odd design choice, whether online or off.

    Steve - I hadn't particularly noticed comprehension level (or lack thereof) at the time, but then I've been reading a lot of HCI (Human-Computer Interaction) papers recently and found it straightforward in comparison. And if that doesn't earn your pity, I don't know what does. :wink:

    Miss J

  11. mamster, any info you have on Bangkok would fantastic! I suspect I'm not going to have as much time there as I'd like, but I'm extremely keen to have a definitive Thai street food experience. *bounce bounce*

    Are there any areas or districts we should head for in particular? Particular treats we should make an effort to track down? Hard-and-fast rules on what kinds of stalls to choose?

    Miss J

  12. Something which didn't happen to me, and has more to do with the consumption of food than the preparation of it, but is a brilliantly bizarre story nonetheless:

    My boyfriend and I were at his parents' place for a nice Saturday lunch. It was a sunny day and we were eating outside on the patio, which was a bit small for a round table with four people around it. At the end of the meal, Boyfriend gets up to clear the table (what a good son) and is forced to "hop" from one foot to the other behind my chair, as there is very little room to move. HOWEVER, at the PRECISE moment that he starts to transfer his weight onto his right foot, a butter knife falls from one of the lunch plates he's carrying and, for a SPLIT second balances with the tip of the blade upright. And through an incredible act of Sod's Law, his bare foot comes down on the upright knife with the full weight of a 6.3" bloke behind it. :wow:

    At the hospital, the staff was so impressed by this that they took polaroids of his foot with the butter knife sticking out of the bottom of it. They have a copy on the nursing station wall to this day, with the caption, "Death Foot."

    We are very careful with butter knives these days.

    Miss J

  13. you must have amazing self-control.  you can't see how sometimes you can't help but hear?

    I was actually be deadly serious - I don't listen to others private conversations.  Yes - sometimes I can't help but "hear" what others are saying - but I don't "listen" i.e. take it in.   Oh dear, maybe I am a bit weird.

    No, you've just managed to avoid Standard Egullet Sillyness. Though how you've managed to avoid contamination so far, I'm not entirely sure.  :raz:

    Miss J

  14. Am I alone in not eavesdropping on other peoples conversations?  It just seems such a rude thing to do.

    you must have amazing self-control.  you can't see how sometimes you can't help but hear?

    ...especially when you're eating on your own. You put down your book to start paying serious attention to your dinner, but as absorbed as you are you can't help but noticed that the couple at the next table are discussing an "intimate" encounter with a C-list celeb.

    I mean...c'mon guv, I'm only human.  ;-)

    Miss J

  15. While nothing like as spectacular as Adam's story, I ALWAYS chop my fingernails off while I'm cooking. It's incredibly irritating. I'll be happily chop-chop-chopping along, and all of a sudden - opps! There's a piece of fingernail on the cutting board.

    So there you have it: I am a klutz with poor chopping technique.  :smile:

    Miss J

  16. jaybee, the grand appeal of evesdropping is the possibility of overhearing a conversation that you would never take part in, and so glean info about complete strangers. So to your question about whether or not you should be careful about what you talk about it restaurants - don't be silly! That would take all the sport out of it for committed evesdroppers everywhere. :wink:

    As for your specific example, the woman must have been a pretty confident personality to feel as through she could *touch* you and then ask you to change your conversation to suit her current state of mind. (Or maybe I've just been living in England for too long - I think that's pretty forward behaviour.) Like Beachfan, I hope she was inviting you to emphasis with her rather than chiding you. The former is unorthodox, but the latter is just plain out of order.

    Miss J

  17. Generally, though, I found the food in Cambodia did not have the range, quality of produce and subtleties of what we ate in Bangkok, although still tasty and interesting.

    Robert, thanks for the restaurant tips - I'm grasping frantically at any info I can get, so yours is very timely indeed.  :smile:

    I've been starting to get the impression that food in Cambodia is a bit of a let-down, which is why we've rejigged our plans a bit to spend a bit more time in Thailand than we were originally intending. It's been suggested in one of the books I'm reading that the reason why Khmer cuisine falls short is because the hell that Cambodia went through changed its approach to food from pleasure to survival. (Well, how else can you explain tarantula sates? I'm just hoping I never see that. I think arachnophobic rush of horror might flatten me.)

    How long were you in Cambodia for? And at what time of year?

    Miss J

  18. The borage report:

    I've a couple of the tender young leaves in my hand. They're pale green (contrasting to the rest of the plant, which as very thick, dark leaves) and strangely fuzzy. It's like a cross between peach fuzz and the teeny hairs on a stinging nettle, only without the sting.

    When I pop one into my mouth, my first impression is - FERNS. They have that fuzzy, crunchy green mouth feel. (Yes, I was the kind of child who tried eating young, curled-up fern heads because I was fascinated by Maritime fiddleheads.) But once I get past that first sensation, I guess they're a little cucumber-y. They're very mild, and have a very fresh scent when crushed that would be great in a Pimms Cup. I'm not sure I'd make a whole salad out of them, but they'd probably make an interesting component in one.

    Jinmyo, I'm interested in the deep fried leaf concept. I'll have to let you know how it turns out. Even though I'm terribly disappointed to find out it that I'm not going to be hawking London's first underground borage supply.  :raz:

    Miss J

  19. am i the only one who read this topic title and sang "Borage, what is it good for.absolutely nothing....say it again HUH! " ?

    Nope - that's precisely what I was thinking. I like a little pacifist funk with my mystery greens.  :biggrin:

    Miss J

  20. Psycho-active properties? Wa-hey...borage roll-ups!  :wink:

    That reminds me of a story about my gran (a truely magnificent gardener) and her prized poppies. For years she grew beautiful poppies and carefully saved the seed heads, as the variety was difficult to find and she was very fond of the colour. One season, a group of nice young people came to her door and asked if she would give them some of the seed heads when they were ready. Of course, she agreed immediately. A few weeks later a few more young people showed up asking if they could have some seed heads. And a week later...

    It took gran a month to realise that she had be cultivating opium poppies, and that the young people were not in fact avid gardeners.  :raz:

    ..but back to borage. I like the idea in the linked article to make a summer tonic - makes me wonder if I could add it to Pimms Cup. As for the taste of the leaves, I think I'll give it a try first thing in the morning - it's a wee bit dark out there to graze at the moment. I'll let you know what I find!

    Miss J

  21. Well, we're booked now!

    We're going to fly into Bangkok on November 8, and spend a bit of time poking around Thailand (translation: eating everything that doesn't move) before catching a flight to Penom Pehn. There we'll stay with our mate Matthew, who has kindly offered to show us 'round by jeep and take us up to Anghor Wat for a few days. Then we'll travel back and down to the south coast, and slowly meander our way across Cambodia and into Vietnam. Finally, we'll make our way to Ho Chi Min City where we'll finally fly back to London.

    I am VERY excited.  :biggrin:

    Miss J

  22. Being the fledgling green thumb that I am, I'm delighted to announce that I have successfully grown borage. In fact, my borage is so successful that it's seems to be a little larger with each passing hour, and I fully expect it to soon overwhelm the rest of the bed. It's like Day of the Triffids out there.  :wow:

    Anyone know what I can do with it? I need to start consuming borage flowers and leaves soon...before the borage consumes me!

    Miss J

  • Create New...