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marie-louise

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Everything posted by marie-louise

  1. The dry gardened tomatoes have arrived at the Market Hall produce store. They are from Molina [?] Creek Farm in Davenport. Tana-or anyone else in that area-know this farm? The sign at the store says, "These are the best tomatoes you will ever taste," and while that may be stretching it, they are very, very good.
  2. No kids, but a question: Do many supermarkets have those minature carts for kids to shop along w/ their parents? A few store in the Bay Area (Berkeley Whole Foods, Greenbrae Molly Stone's) have them.
  3. I was curious just how many calories are in a piece of See's candy. It's not on their website, so I emailed them. They don't have a list to give out, but said if I told them some of my favorites, they'd look them up and get back to me. Here they are. Not as bad as I thought, and you all should be pleased to know that they consider 2 pieces of candy (or 3 Toffee-ettes, or 4 pieces ginger) a serving. One Bordeaux, under a hundred calories! The Dark Bordeaux (based on 1 serving which is 2 pieces): serving weight is 41 grams, has 170 CALORIES, 70 FAT CALORIES, 8 grams of FAT, 4.5 grams of SATURATED FAT, 10 mg CHOLESTEROL, 40 mg SODIUM, 27 grams TOTAL CARBOHYDRATES, 1 gram DIETARY FIBER, 25 grams of SUGAR, <1 grams PROTEIN. The California Brittle (based on 1 serving which is 2 pieces): serving weight is 38 grams, has 220 CALORIES, 140 FAT CALORIES, 16 grams of FAT, 8 grams of SATURATED FAT, 25 mg CHOLESTEROL, 115 mg SODIUM, 19 grams TOTAL CARBOHYDRATES, 0 grams DIETARY FIBER, 17 grams of SUGAR, 3 grams PROTEIN. The Toffee-ette (based on 1 serving which is 3 pieces): serving weight is 45 grams, has 270 CALORIES, 180 FAT CALORIES, 21 grams of FAT, 7 grams of SATURATED FAT, 20 mg CHOLESTEROL, 115 mg SODIUM, 18 grams TOTAL CARBOHYDRATES, 2 grams DIETARY FIBER, 14 grams of SUGAR, 5 grams PROTEIN. The Ginger (based on 1 serving which is 4 pieces): serving weight is 42 grams, has 120 CALORIES, 30 FAT CALORIES, 3.5 grams of FAT, 2 grams of SATURATED FAT, 0 mg CHOLESTEROL, 5 mg SODIUM, 25 grams TOTAL CARBOHYDRATES, 1 grams DIETARY FIBER, 10 grams of SUGAR, <1 grams PROTEIN.
  4. There is a lot of discussion on Bay Area dim sum on this thread, including a link to Koi Palace's website. I still have not made it out there. I tried and tried to call one Wednesday to make reservations for lunch, but their line was busy. I am going to keep trying, though!
  5. I will try it-promise. My husband loves duck. He orders it every time it is on the menu (probably because we never eat it at home) and is always trying to get me to take a bite. I'm quite certain they sell it at my local butcher. PS I do prefer chicken thighs-with the skin, of course- to chicken breasts. That is the right amount of grease for me.
  6. Hmmm, maybe this is why I don't care for lamb shanks as much as other cuts. I, too, usually trim all the fat off lamb before I cook it. Funny thing-I have a sudden urge for a nice rack of lamb, with a rosemary/ mustard/ garlic/ bread crumb coating.
  7. I don't like how greasy it tastes, even in the best of restaurants. I never order it, let alone buy it.
  8. Yum, Piatti's menu looks like it has lots of great seafood choices. Where exactly are you staying? The town of Sonoma is only about an hour from Chez Panisse.
  9. Generally in the Bay Area you will find that all restaurants have several seafood entrees on the menu. We don't tend to have many of those classic, seafood-only restaurants. (Why is that, I wonder?) Certainly, the quality-and underlying style-varies along with the restaurant, but I never eat dinner in the town of Sonoma, so I can't help you with specifics. I've had some great local salmon this summer, and sand dabs are always a good bet.
  10. I eat lamb all the time. It's always in the stores around here-there's a lot of lamb grown in Sonoma County. I'm not a big fan of lamb shanks-I find them kind of strong-tasting.
  11. Just a motherly reminder to anyone who comes to the Bay Area in September or October-check the weather forecast right before you leave. It can be VERY hot here this time of year. Yesterday it was 92 in SF and I can only imagine in Napa. Few places have air-conditioning, either.
  12. I have used all of them enough to get my money's worth, but I apply the same standard to a cookbook as I do for any other book. When I get a new cookbook, I read through it, just like a novel. It's rare I read a best-selling novel more than once, or visit every place in a travel guide, but I don't view them as a waste of money because of it. So, even if I never cook a single recipe from it, as long as I've enjoyed reading it, I feel I've gotten my money's worth. I have gleaned ideas from just all of my cookbooks. As the years go by, I find fewer totally new recipes and techniques, but it still occasionally happens. In any given book, I usually spot some technique or flavor combination that's an improvement on my existing tried & true recipe-so there's another way I feel that my money's been well-spent. Like several others have said, I consult four or five cookbooks and combine recipes. It is very rare that I follow a recipe exactly. (Well, actually, that would be never.) Last but certainly not least, I like having a reference library. I belong to a CSA, so I have a section of vegetable cookbooks. I like my collection of ethnic cookbooks to refer to when trying to understand the authentic version that a fusion and/or quick recipe is based on. An example of this would be that wonderful Hot and Sour Soup recipe of Mamster's. How did Tom Douglas change it from the classic? What would I keep, what would I add back from the classic, and what would I add to make it my own? I usually buy the cookbook from any restaurant I frequent. I like reading how chefs do things; they are usually too time-consuming for me to want to duplicate, but I like learning how they make my favorite dishes. To answer your final question, the only cookbook that I feel like I've almost cooked my way through is Bruce Aidell's Complete Meat Cookbook. I learned a lot about cooking today's lean meat from that book.
  13. I have been fortunate to eat at Chez Panisse more times than I can count over the past twenty or so years. I no longer remember any details of my first meal there, or even when or why I went. I've been upstairs, downstairs, had lunch, dinner, and just dessert. I've gone there from everything from very special occasions like my BIL's 30th birthday (we sat next to Herb Caen, we were so starstruck) to a quick weeknight meal in the cafe with my husband. I tasted my first cassoulet there, on a rare snowy night in the Bay Area a few years ago. Sure, some things have been better than others, but I can't remember a single time when at some point in during the meal I didn't say, "How does she make this taste SO good?" Okay, maybe "she" doesn't do much of anything these days. Maybe she never did. I don't care. I LOVE this restaurant and everything it stands for. I feel incredibly priviliged to be able to eat there, and at all the many restaurants in the Bay Area with chefs who once worked there. But then, I live in a Craftsman home. It's a perfect analogy. Thanks, Russ.
  14. The Market Hall is on College and I believe Hudson (next to the Rockridge BART.) It is a collection of food-related shops. Oliveto's is upstairs. It is my favorite place to shop for food.
  15. I'm a big fan of Chemex. As for a grinder, I have a burr grinder from Starbucks that is made by Solis. I'm happy with it (it is almost two years old, I doubt it is what they sell now.)
  16. Nothing. I crave something, I eat it a few times, then I lose interest. Does that make me fussy?
  17. I'm feeling much better. We stopped by See's-on our way home from the dentist, I kid you not. Our free samples were a Bordeaux and a Toffee-ette. One piece of California Brittle back in the car and my See's urge is satisfied. For now... But a 1 lb. assortment of dark chocolate Bordeaux, chocolate-covered ginger, dark chocolate cherry cordials, marzipan, and a lot of California Brittle is waiting in the pantry. And a 1 lb. can of Tofee-ettes to take on our road trip next week (it's on sale!) Somehow, I picked almost all your favorites. PS They had lots more flavors that aren't on the website.
  18. Milk chocolate Bordeaux or dark chocolate Bordeaux-they make both? Here is the ultimate See's link : sixty-five of their chocolates, in cross-section. They still make more varieties than this; I had some dark chocolate-covered cherries at Valentine's that were good. The dark chocolate-covered ginger is a very nice thing to serve at the end of a dinner party, and if you want something really sweet, the Maple Walnut is also good. My husband likes the Marzipan. Personally, I can eat just about anything in the nuts and chews assortment. I MUST GO TO A SEE'S TODAY!!! I'm guessing a lot of you are buying pre-packaged boxes at the airport. If you get a chance, go into the store. It's a real trip. First, you get a free sample of your choice. They know you can't think straight until you have had a bite. They make you a box of as many different varieties as you want. Then they give you another sample of something they are promoting when you pay. That way, you are full enough to be able to wait until you get back to your car before opening the box. I've even seen them passing out chocolates in line if there are more than one or two people in line. I guess they have a corporate policy that no one should have to be inside a See's Candy store for more than two minutes before consuming chocolate.
  19. A continuation from the It's-It's thread. For those of you not familiar with it, it is good, basic chocolate candy. It is not the world's best by any stretch of the imagination, in the same way that the ice cream in an It's-It's is not the world's best. But it tastes exactly the same as it did when I was a kid. The stores look just like they did when I was a kid. And the staff all look like her. So tell me your favorites. Mine's California Brittle.
  20. If it makes you feel any better, ever since I wrote the phrase "See's Candy," I have been having a SERIOUS craving for California Brittle. All the shops are closed. It will have to wait. PS California Brittle is the best See's flavor. Well, one of them, anyway. There's also this one, which is similar, but also has toasted almonds on top. We need a See's thread!
  21. Tomato alert-keep your eyes peeled in hte next few weeks for something called "Dry Tomatoes." The vegetable store in The Market Hall (who's name espcapes me ath the moment) sells them, but I'm guessing others do as well. They stop irrigating their plants, which intensifies the flavor into the tomatoes. These are SO incredible. If you see them, buy them. They are small red tomatoes, probably an Early Girl or something.
  22. Ooohhh, I love these. The two cookies, the chocolate coating, and the cold ice cream. They are one of my favorite post-hiking snacks. (No, I don't put them in my pack-every corner store sells them!) I'm so sorry you can't get them ouside of the Bay Area. I had no idea. How about See's candy-have they introduced you to that? Can you get that outside of California?
  23. Airline coffee. With the powdered milk. When you're on the 6am flight heading for a meeting and you really, really need to wake up. Spilling it on you because the plane hits turbulence, or getting that white crap all over your black suit when you try and open it between two bulky passengers who are oozing onto your seat so much you can't move your arms, is the final insult.
  24. marie-louise

    Rosh Hashana

    Afikomen is a great resource. You might want to call them and ask them what they have. I don't live far from them, I'll try to get by one of these days and check it out. Please do post what you end up doing for dinner.
  25. marie-louise

    Rosh Hashana

    Sigh... this year we will be traveling in the middle of nowhere on Rosh Hashanah. Probably eating bacon and hamburgers at the local diner. We will have to celebrate belatedly with an extra-special meal. Your idea sounds like just the thing. Please tell me more details about what you did. I know about the prayers, and I know about the ritual foods (including my two favorites, sweet round challah and apples), but I like the idea of creating a seder-like meal of it. Did they have something like a Haggadah to read from? Was it a professional book, or something they created?
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