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TechieTechie

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  1. TechieTechie

    Deciding what you need - range/stove

    Shelby and Quiet, I would suggest first thinking thru what are your requirements and why and the importance of the requirement (folks often miss the 2nd and 3rd parts)...then find the solution (this is where my Techie background comes in). Or, said another way, how do you cook now, how often do you cook that way, what are those "I Hate this XYZ moments', and what do you want to cook (or how to cook) more of in the future (current state requirements, pain points, and future state requirements, in my lingo). Most people just jump right to a solution, based upon other's recommendations, but it can be a recipe (no pun intended) for disaster, particularly with a major purchase. For example -I regularly stir fry, canning or want boiling water at lighting speed (High priority solution = 22k BTUs burners, medium priority, 15k burner) -I do lot of candy making or cook delicate sauces regularly (excellent simmer control, solution = probably not induction) -I cook sourdourgh boules 6x a a year (solution = steam oven) -I only cook basic pies, cakes and cookies, usually small batches (solution = plane old gas oven, well regulated, can be smaller size). -I want to be able to cook massive amounts of cookies on a weekend (solution = either double oven or an oven big enough to fit full sheet pans) -I need to be able to cook 2 things at two different temperatures at any given time. High priority solution = dual oven . Low Priority (maybe only at the holidays) then maybe 1 oven in the stove and 1 portable/countertop oven that can be stored in the basement is enough. You get my drift.... Once you have your requirements and the importance/priority of the requirements (3 = must have, 2 = nice to have, 1 = can live without) look them over again. You should have a 30/30/30 ish type of split in your requirements (if they are all 3s, get ready to spend a bazillion dolloars and have your expectations dashed, because no one product is the tops at everything...it's all about compromising on the things that are not must haves). Once you have your requirements nailed, narrowing down the type of stove becomes a lot easier (you want a stove that hits all your 3s and a lot of the 2s). Particularly because we each have different requirements, so the stove that may be a good fit for me may not be a good fit for you! Then, once you have found the top contenders, try to cook on them (testing). You'll know pretty quickly if your defined reality (aka requirements) are actually met by the tool (oops, stove). You will probably even identify more things you want/don't want when doing the testing (or things are more/less important that you initially identified). The other thing you can do is keep a notebook by your stove for the next few weeks. Jot down likes and dislikes as you go....will help with the requirements. This can be done with any major purchase. Techie signing off now. I will bill you all later
  2. Wow, I stand corrected, thank you! Never knew modern ranges have them.
  3. Er, um, here goes. 1. Chocolate Pop Tarts, cooked just enough for the innards to be gooey and the tops crispy...I tried Amy's organic ones...and they tasted like wallpaper paste 2. Totino's supreme pizza rolls...ditto, gotta go all the way on this 3. Undercooked Ghiradelli Double Chocolate brownies (the interior should be just slightly gooey) 4. Raw Nestle's chocolate chip cookie dough 5. Little Debbies Nutty Buddys 6. Home fried chicken nuggets and spicy curly fries (Arby's rendition is surprisingly good) 7. Fried Mozzarella Sticks 8. Fried Honey Dipped Chicken Wings 9. Popeye's Fried Chicken, especially thighs and fries. 10. McDonalds Sausage Biscuits and Starbucks' Sausage and Egg Sandwich (sans egg) 11. Pork Chops with spicy salt (aka Sichuan salt and pepper pork chops aka fried hunks of pork that are super spicy and yummy) 12. Ginger Beer (I've downgraded from Red's extra to Diet Barett's which is surprisingly good). Wow, now that I list them out, I feel really dirty. Good thing I only consume the latter two on a semi-regular basis.
  4. TechieTechie

    Best First Cookbook

    OMG. I completely forgot about that book. I had it too..I loved it. Get them addicted early, I'd say But in all seriousness, I often give Bittman's book and Cook's Illustrated Best Recipes. Reason I like to give the latter is that I think it is appealing to folks who like to understand (in a simple form) the why's of cooking and how different methods produce different results (moreso than a compendium of good recipes). My ex, who was NOT a cook, picked it up one night and read that sucker cover to cover...then became an avid griller. EDIT: I often will substitute Ruth's "The Gourmet Cookbook" for Bittman's. I lurve Ruth. Thorough, accessible, and yummy. But I do heartily agree that Julia's How to Cook is an excellent beginner book (we could never keep it in stock at Williams Sonoma) and hmm...now I will have to crack open the Pepin book that I recently purchased.
  5. No, thermowells were a Chambers brand distinction only found on Chambers. I chose OKM over Chambers because the OKM oven was larger, it had a 2nd full size oven, the burner BTUs are higher than Chambers (12/15k versus 9k), and I'd prefer 3 more burners rather than a thermowell. But Chambers have their devotees, so they must be doing something right! Good news is that I just found a Antique Stove repair guy in Greater Boston. Whoo Hoo!!!!!
  6. Weinoo, this stove has a pilot with safety valve for the oven, and I can shut off the pilots on the stovetop...so from what I can read, I will be legal in MA. Fingers crossed.
  7. I got lucky, found it on the 'bay for a pretty reasonable price...and I like having the separate griddle and waffle plates...you can keep a nice nonstick on the waffle plates this way.
  8. Sorry, it is an unused Sunbeam CG-1, 1250 watts. Mmm, grilled prosciutto, mozz, tomato and pesto sammie, here I come
  9. And with that...I am going to use my new to me GE waffle iron/griddle. Pics to come. Need food and warmth after shoveling the walk for the 2nd time today
  10. @rotuts What you are seeing in the corners is simply the end of the chrome top. The top (called a vanishing shelf) folds up out of the way, like the picture. Since mine is a 6 burner, I will likely buy a griddle from Grapevine Sally on the 'bay...and just set it over the middle 2 burners.
  11. The first (and admittedly largest) toy is my new to me O'Keefe and Merritt Stove. For those who are not familiar with OKM (as they are commonly known), here is the history: Two former Pacific Stove Co. employees (bearing those surnames) started this firm in Los Angeles in the early 20th century. By the midcentury, O&M was vying with the older Bay Area-based Wedgewood for supremacy on the West Coast. Ohio-based Tappan purchased OKM in 1951 and subsequent owners Frigidaire and Electrolux kept producing stoves under this brand until the '90s.Their Aristocrat is considered by cognoscenti the ne plus ultra of midcentury stoves.(source: SF Gate https://www.sfgate.com/homeandgarden/article/A-guide-to-satisfying-the-burning-love-for-5631753.php) Midcentury (1950s) modern stoves are considered the golden age of vintage stoves because they were built like tanks, but before cheaper manufacturing approaches (and heavier use of plastic) started occurring in the late 1950s. But, they have a lot of the same features and safety as modern ranges, with 3 major exceptions....they still have pilot lights, no convection and no electronics. The former two may be a deal killer for some, the latter is actually a benefit IMHO. My 1953 OKM is a model 850, the 2nd highest end model, save the massive Aristocrat. It’s a 40", 6 burner, double oven model, with bottom broiler. It has a combination of 12k and 15k BTU open burners. It also has: -Full simmer capabilities on all burners -"Spider" burner covers Can slide pots between burners - as on many professional cooktops -Fully lined (on all 4 sides) double oven that fits a ½ sheet span and can fit a 15lb turkey -Fully removable cook surface to clean spills underneath -Broiler with an enameled inside -Enameled shelves under burners which catch pan jump-outs and can be pulled out and cleaned -Small Pot- and pan-storage compartment -Middle burners can accommodate a full griddle -Stove cover that folds up to become a shelf that can be used during cooking for a cookbook, spices, potholders, you name it. -Uses Shaw heating controls, and the entire stove can be dissembled and rebuilt. It was in the same family (in Phoenix) until I bought it approx 3 years ago....it is currently in storage until I finish my kitchen renovation. With the exception of 1 chip to the enamel on the front foot, it is in excellent shape, though I do plan on sending the pieces out for rechroming, replacing the insulation, and having the thermostats and regulators rebuilt. Other examples (including the Aristocrat/Town and Country) can be seen here: http://www.dreamstoves.com/o-keefe---merritt.html
  12. Okay, since it's a snow day here in MA (blizzard conditions) I thought I would start a new thread, Techie's Toys. I grew up in a small town in Ohio, home to White Westinghouse, Tappan, Dominion, and yes, the Shawshank Redemption. Because we came from limited means with 4 kids, I was always taught to find the value in something. Old is okay, as long as it's high quality (homes, boats, cars, consumer goods). And, since I grew up in the 70s, 50s and 60s appliances were all around (heck, I can still remember when a microwave was an anomaly). And, I have always loved late 1890s and early 1900s architectural styles. So, as an adult, I have started to collect useable pieces of cooking art. Older, quality pieces that have (and hopefully will) stand the test of time. And, these gently used pieces have the added benefit of helping to keep at least a tiny piece of the earth from being destroyed by new manufacturing. And in this thread, I will show off my admittedly very small collection in hopes that others will find the joy in vintage (of whatever vintage) kitchen goods.
  13. Honestly, for folks that are just starting out on adult life (and didn't grow up in Foodie families) I give them Bittman's book and The Best Recipes. Newbies need to gain a basic appreciation that cooking food is not a herculean task and that even simple recipes, with a little effort, can taste good. Are they palate shattering? Are they 300% authentic to regional cuisine? No. But, these kinds of books start folks on their culinary journeys, and once they gain appreciation, they branch out (and some even become foodies like us). Everyone has to start somewhere...heck, I still pull out his book from time to time for his chicken thigh marinade and reminders on how long to cook certain itmes. These types of books open doors, at least in my humble opinion.
  14. TechieTechie

    Hello from Greater Boston!

    Hi all.....Yep, Rotus has/had the same model stove (850) as mine...but just with different options. Mine had the 6 burner, double glass door options, the rarest setup besides a factory painted red. That is the only downside, is that there are pilot lights...but my kitchen is tiny and will not have a heat source (I'm on steam heat and don't want to give up 4 feet of wall space), so the pilot warmth will do just fine. I had a similar pilot steve/no heat setup in my first condo here, and I never noticed the kitchen being unduly hot. Actually, Rotus, this model was made from 50-56 (IIRC) so your parents may have bought it new. Yours is a beaut. I picked mine up for a steal in Phoenix and brought it back. Restored, these guys go for 6k. It has 15k BTU open burners (with full simmer function), so although it's not Chinese restaurant BTU hot, it should be hot enough. And the ovens fit a double sheet pan (longways) with the added benefit of being smaller and faster to heat up. Like I said, if I plug it in and I hate it (luckily I already have gas in the house for my dryer), I will give it to Kay and plop in a 36" bluestar and a 4 inch wide rolling spice rack. But I don't think I will
  15. This is a wonderful thread, thank you for sharing. I too, share concerns about the glass floor. Though I love the idea, I think the upkeep will be tremendous. When I think about getting streaks out of a glass tabletop, the dirtyness that is just a fact of life on serving floor (and the mops that clean them), the possibility for chips/cracking, plus the sound reverb from such a hard surface, I would recommend either forgoing or making it a highlighted and untrafficked spot in the room. Not to mention, it would be really hard to get the lighting on both floors just so. Could you have a glass walled room (like a wine room?). You could have a chef's table of sorts, surrounded by edibles...THAT would be cool (at least to me). But congrats on the great press and the successful opening of the first place. How do you intend to manage both? Seems like that would be incredibly hard, given that you want to be so hands on in Bulrush. Not trying to knock you down, but running 1 restaurant is hard, can't imagine doing two (particularly with one being an intimate space).
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