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Everything posted by chord

  1. Just in case there's any interest I thought I would post a short review of the Tasty by Cuisinart mini food processor that I got last week (pictured below). I bought it for $16 from the Beall's website plus another $8 in shipping charges and for the price it is a great little machine. The bowl holds 4 cups and the motor is rated to 300 watts. This is slightly larger and more powerful than the base Cuisinart mini chopper (model DLC-2ABC). The blade features a sharp side and a dull side. Most chopping is done with the sharp side, although hard items like spices and seeds should be ground using the other side. Chopping is the primary reason I bought it and it handles this task just as one would expect. As a lark I tried to use the machine to knead pizza dough. First I made a personal sized pizza made with 85g of whole wheat flour which the machine handled with aplomb. And then I tried a second time with 150g of AP flour for a medium sized pie. The latter attempt filled the bowl and I could hear that the motor was struggling but even so it was able to successfully form a dough ball. I have to say I was surprised that it managed to knead that much dough and this is something I intend to try again at some point. The machine also comes with a reversible cutting disc with one side for slicing and the other for grating. This works just fine--at least in principle. However, the feed tube is extremely narrow, about 1.3" x 1.8" limiting its usefulness. Couple that with the small bowl and you really don't save much time compared to a box grater. A few other downsides: Unlike the regular Cuisinart, this model doesn't spin in reverse, which means that the blade needs to be flipped over to use the duller side. This does mean that you have to be careful when reassembling the machine to make sure that you have the correct side facing up before using it. Under very heavy loads, it will sometimes walk on the counter and need to be held in place. That's not terribly surprising considering that this is a very lightweight machine. The only other negative which comes to mind is the name on the food processor. I wasn't really aware of them before, but apparently "Tasty" is a Buzzfeed brand known for its viral recipe videos that are poorly designed and short on technique. The logo doesn't particularly matter to me but I imagine it may be off-putting to some. .
  2. A 2 quart pot should make a decent sized boule. The linked recipe uses 300g of flour. I regularly bake a 450g loaf in a 3qt Lodge and it doesn't come close to filling the pot.
  3. Aside from braising, here are a few other ideas: Use it as a tureen to keep soups and stews warm on your dining table. Bake no-knead bread: https://www.seriouseats.com/2011/06/the-food-lab-the-science-of-no-knead-dough.html Use it as an outdoor ice bucket like in the below picture.
  4. For what it's worth, Ikea doesn't even have an enameled cast iron dutch oven in its current US catalog. There are plain cast iron and enameled steel pots, but no ECI. So the discussion is moot.
  5. Well regularly checking the water level is kind of a pain. Plus you'd probably want to heat any water before adding it back to the pot as too much cold water may slow the cooking process. Also some tout the "rain" of condensation like in this Staub video. That benefit though may be a little harder to swallow.
  6. I don't think Le Creuset makes the Doufeu anymore but it was designed to promote condensation. It had spikes like Staub as well as a recessed lid that gets filled with ice (see pic). In theory the temp differential causes water to rise within the pot and then fall back onto the food. I've never owned one so I can't comment on how well it works.
  7. The pic below is my Braun. The chopping attachment doesn't seem as substantial as the models posted by @Maison Rustique and @liuzhou. Nevertheless, it did a quite decent job. I tried it on an array of vegetables, as well as some fresh bread and chicken thighs. As long as the food item could be placed in a single layer it worked well. In fact it was a little too quick. In a couple of pulses it ground the chicken pieces very finely. There's no chance of getting a coarse grind out of this chopper. The Braun will certainly be adequate for the time being. But I'll soon have another option. I just ordered this Tasty by Cuisinart mini processor. It has a four cup bowl and a 300 watt motor, even better than the regular mini Cuisinart. With the sale price and a 25% off coupon it came to $26 with taxes and shipping. I hope it isn't junk but at that price I'm willing to take a flier.
  8. Rice cooker. For the quantities I make, it's just easier to use a small pot.
  9. You know, I too have an old immersion blender that came with a chopper attachment. I'll have to look for the attachment as I've moved a few times since I originally got it. I remember it being kind of flimsy so I'm a bit dubious that it can grind meat, but what the heck, if I can find it I will give it a whirl (pun intended).
  10. I was looking at that model too. Is the locking mechanism finicky? I know that's been an issue with some of the other classic Cuisinarts. Is this the 4 quart version you mean? I've heard not-so-great things about the Elemental line, although I have no first hand experience.
  11. My 20+ year old Oster food processor went kaput a couple of months ago and I'm looking for a replacement. I was salivating over the latest full sized processors from Cuisinart, Breville and the like. But if I'm honest about my needs instead of my wants I really should get a mini chopper. I live alone and don't cook in huge quantities. Most of the time I'd rather just pull out a knife, which is why the Oster lasted so long. But occasionally I need to chop a whole bunch of vegetables or grind meat and a machine would be useful for that. The two most popular models of mini chopper seem to be the Cuisinart DLC-2ABC and Kitchenaid KFC3516 both of which get decent ratings. The Kitchenaid is also recommended by Wirecutter. Another option would be the Ninja Blender/Chopper. But I already have a Vitamix and I don't really want to deal with all the extra bowls this thing comes with. I found an earlier thread from @andiesenji touting the Ninja Ultra Prep, but that model doesn't seem to be made anymore. And lastly, while browsing Amazon, I found some no-name choppers that also have good reviews: Mosaic and Link Chef. Like the Ninja, these have the motor on top. They also have metal bowls. I'm intrigued by that because the plastic bowls on inexpensive choppers are always one of the big failure points. Does anyone have any experience with any of these machines? I'm especially curious if anyone has tried one of the no-names. Any other recommendations or thoughts?
  12. I don't know if it's any good but the All-Clad immersion circulator is on sale at Sierra.com for $99. https://www.sierra.com/all-clad-sous-vide-immersion-circulator~p~19xux/ ETA: Just checked the Amazon reviews and they are mediocre. And Serious Eats had some reservations as well. Buyer beware.
  13. chord


    Thanks. I was happy with my 10 year old version, so I'll probably just get another Kyocera.
  14. chord


    I've had a yellow Kyocera ceramic slicer/mandoline for many years. Unfortunately it just broke. This model seems to be the closest replacement, although mine wasn't adjustable. I don't need anything fancy with a lot of parts I need to keep track of. I just want a simple slicer that will make the kind of thin cuts that I can't easily do by hand with my barely adequate knife skills. Does anyone have any experience with the Kyocera versus one of the similar models from Oxo, Prepworks, etc?
  15. I'm a total neophyte, so take these comments for whatever they are worth, but the Spruce Eats dough recipe seems very similar to the Peasant Bread one from alexandracooks. That dough is also batter-like, but her recipe only has a one-hour initial rise and she does do a kind of a fold using forks between the first and second rise. Could the four hour rise be the culprit? Your bread does look a lot like the pic in the King Arthur article on over-proofed dough.
  16. There's a lot of yeast available on Etsy. Some of it is in the original packaging from the major providers like SAF and Red Star. Others seem to be from small bakeries and individuals who have repackaged bigger allotments. Most of the sellers are listing expiration dates as well and there are a lot of recent 5* reviews. Prices are ok. About $7 per pound, but then you have to tack on another $6-7 for shipping.
  17. There's a scarcity of pork around here. I was looking at these pork "carnitas." Do you think it's pork butt? There's no indication on the packaging. I'd like a cut that I can use for braising or for grinding.
  18. Focaccia with almonds, onion and rosemary
  19. I only have a single loaf pan, so I made a 3/4 recipe. Below are the actual amounts I used. As I'm at altitude, my version is light on the yeast. Also, I realize now that I didn't account for the different flour weights, so there's less cornmeal and more whole wheat flour than in the published recipe. Ingredient Percentage 3/4 Recipe AP flour 62.5 240g Cornmeal 12.5 48g Whole wheat flour 25 96g 1 cup boiling water + 1 cup 110F water 92 177g + 177g Molasses 16 61g (3 tbsp) Butter 5 21g (1.5 tbsp) Kosher Salt 2.3 9g (1.5 tsp Diamond/.75 tsp Mortons) Yeast (@high altitude) 0.8 3g (1.1 tsp yeast) ETA: I previously made the standard recipe and really liked that as well. I made half of it in an Anchor Hocking glass bowl and the other half in the loaf pan as a short loaf: There's a lot more info on the standard recipe at Alexandra Stafford's blog: https://alexandracooks.com/2012/11/07/my-mothers-peasant-bread-the-best-easiest-bread-you-will-ever-make/
  20. Thanks, I appreciate the kind words. I actually measured by weight instead of volume, so the hydration percentage should have remained the same. I'm sure you're right about the amylopectin, or rather I will be sure once I figure out what it means. I'll try a split top next time.
  21. I'm one of those folks who never really did much baking until being trapped inside by the pandemic. I was lucky to get my hands on some yeast in early April and I've been making a variety of baked goods since then. This is Anadama Peasant Bread. I got the recipe here, but it's originally from Bread Toast Crumbs, by Alexandra Stafford. ETA: I forgot about my questions. The loaf has a ragged edge. Is that a blowout? Should I try to score the bread next time, even though it's a really wet dough with 92% hydration? The top of the loaf shows some yellowish spots and streaks. I thought I mixed it well before the rise. Any idea why I see the color variation?
  22. In the winter, maple syrup, bourbon, and orange bitters work really well together.
  23. While digging around on Amazon, I found this Traex spoonula: https://www.amazon.com/SPOON-13-0367-TRAEX-SPATULAS-LADLES/dp/B001E0JOVQ, although it doesn't look like it's in production anymore. It seems that Vollrath bought Traex several years ago. So if you want something similar, this one is probably the successor model.
  24. This scooper/strainer thing is my favorite. I don't know who designed it, but that nameless individual was almost certainly a cook. The oval perforations work better than round ones. They let a lot of liquid through, but will stop even small bits of food like cooked Israeli couscous. (I don't know why you almost never see colanders with oval holes.) The tines on the edges work well for grabbing long pasta. And the tines also allow the strainer bowl to bend, so it can get into the corners of a saucepan and fish out the last remaining bits of food. I use it to grab food from boiling water, to pull out the meat and vegetables after making stock, to remove the mini plastic balls from my sous vide set up, etc. I've seen other scoopers that sell for $10-20, but I think this one is better designed than any of the ones I've seen at Williams Sonoma, Sur La Table, Crate and Barrel, etc. I paid something like $2.50 at a HomeGoods/Marshall's type store. I'd love to get a second one, but I've never seen another for sale anywhere. ETA: I've looked for it online before and haven't had any luck, but after posting the above I searched Amazon and found it in red for $7: https://www.amazon.com/Home-X-Extra-Deep-Strainer-Straining-Vegetables/dp/B011CGR7Z6/
  25. I just bought a new timer, not a fancy AI assistant, but an old-school one with a magnetic back. I wanted one a clock which showed the time with seconds, as I often just want to stir or blend something for 20 or 30 seconds and it would be overkill to set up an actually timer. The timer itself can count up or down, it's quite loud, and has a good backlight. I bought the TM01 which only has a single timer, but they also offer another model, the larger TM02 with two. TM01: https://buythermopro.com/product/thermopro-tm01-digital-timer-countdown-touchable-backlit/ TM02: https://buythermopro.com/product/thermopro-tm02-dual-digital-kitchen-timer/
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