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Everything posted by jsolomon

  1. Hot cocoa with either frangelico (lots) or creme de menthe with real whipped cream. Usually the whipped cream gets spiked, too. And grilled anything. Last night I roasted snowman peeps over the remaining colas.
  2. According to the phosgene MSDS there is no fluorine in phosgene. However, CF2O, the fluorine derivative of phosgene would certainly act remarkably similar. So, yeah, the big, bad-tempered brother of phosgene could be created if you heat your teflon far beyond the manufacturer's recommendation. Moral of the story: use your equipment as specified by the manufacturer. Teflon is inert, but it does fall apart if you heat it enough.
  3. Wow, the Zoo Bar in Lincoln, Nebraska, has the same issue with various drunken college students accosting vehicles. It's a blues bar, too. Are you sure you don't live down the street from me?
  4. I say "Mom, I'd like scrambled eggs for breakfast."
  5. mmm... gizzards... I have some braising right now
  6. and the turkey and the dressing....
  7. Have you tried feeding something containing garlic to the S.O. on the days you so much as mince garlic?
  8. jsolomon

    Espresso Machines

    Okay, I know I'm going to get blasted for this. (don flame retardent suit) When I was a barristo I didn't use a thermometer to steam the milk. I just went by the sound. There is a definite difference that presents itself quite suddenly. Once the steam stopped screeching and started growling (if I remember correctly) the milk was well steamed/frothed.
  9. Keith, you're on the right track. However, it isn't going to be pure ethanol going up the column unless you're boiling pure ethanol. The reason the flavors travel up the column is that they have a small, but appreciable vapor pressure at the given temperature they are distilled (and tasted). What this means, is that if you took a sample of flavor compound X, cooled it to absolute zero and placed it in a complete vacuum, then raised it to room temperature, or distillation temperature (85 celsius for the sake of argument), the once perfect vacuum would have some small pressure of gas in it due to a portion of the flavor compound going into the gas phase. It's the same process that allows sweat to cool us even though our body temperatures are much lower than the boiling point of water. The water (and flavor compounds) still evaporate, just at a lower rate. It is safe to assume, however, that the effluent going up the column may be highly enriched in ethanol or other compounds, as compared to the mother liquor. edit to add more information
  10. Actually, I think fredbram has hit on a wonderful idea. I've had lots of good experiences making my own salad dressings. It's a great way to familiarize yourself with different herbs and taste enhancers. Things like reduction sauces of fruits and such go really well in salad dressings IMO, and you aren't making huge amounts so if it doesn't turn out, you aren't out a lot of food, etc.
  11. Raw onions that don't have the onion taste in your mouth the morning after. Winter-bearing tomato trees Winter-bearing sweet corn trees
  12. Jenny, I've found that in the off-season (sadly, most of the year) grape or cherry tomatoes usually give you the best real tomato taste. I'm sorry your dinner didn't turn out. It looks like it would make a killer flan/souffle/refrigerator pie with the leftovers (as well as helping to tone down the salt). Look at this recipe from Good Eats and put your sauce in where it says "any one of the following combinations. You probably won't need the cream, either. A little spinach or artichoke hearts may go well, also. Best of luck, and remember, keep cooking!
  13. jsolomon

    Espresso Machines

    Wow! Your kitchen looks remarkably similar to mine... at least coffee-mess-wise! Congratulations on the beautiful and functional purchase! Many happy returns!
  14. Why? What happens? Brussels shots are the outcome. And the flavor of brussels sprouts does not seem to compliment tequila
  15. Sounds like a candidate for flambe-ing... It's really a wonderful technique if you're feeling brave... especially with fresh sweet corn cut raw from the cob... yum.... However, never, ever EVERflambe brussels sprouts in tequila. Voice of experience.
  16. Does anyone have recommendations on where to get these squeeze bottles, mail-order or otherwise? I've done a Google search but can't discern the quality of these bottles. Plochman's mustard in your grocery store
  17. Wow! I want to see the cytochrome that oxidizes phenol!
  18. I was making a distinction between strictly organic, only meaning that there is carbon in the structure, versus something that is actively manufactured in the cell by something easily defined as alive. For instance, ethanol from glucose inside yeast = good But, ethanol from ethane inside New Jersey factory = bad. That doesn't make chemical sense to me. Ethanol is ethanol is ethanol.
  19. Actually, the kerosene won't break down. It will simply evaporate and drift away. I tried to post this earlier, but the DNS changes munched my reply. The issue with petroleum is it used to be used as a solvent for many things like lye, or DDT. However, kerosene and diesel fuel, two of the most popular, will cause chemical burns to the plants. Now, a lot of the concern is about solvents that are manufactured from petroleum. Things like ethyl acetate, chloroform, diethyl ether, dimethyl sulfoxide, and a zillion others. What I don't understand is why some things are okay from biological sources, but the same chemical is banned if it is manufactured from petrol. It just doesn't make chemical sense to me. Otherwise, organic farmers typically use petroleum oil for fuel and lubricants in their machinery.
  20. scotch/stout/pecan pie hamburger/pickle/bacon
  21. In order of my preferences: A lemon, some iced water (sparkling or still), and sugar to make your own lemonade. Unpasteurized cider (but probably can't find that at all due to E. coli reg's) Milk Oolong or jasmine tea. Roy Rogers
  22. BACON Also, rice wine vinegar (as an ingredient, anyway). Other things are chicken enchiladas, homemade lasagna, and soft-boiled eggs with tabasco sauce. The last one I can't explain. I freely admit that it's a weird one to crave; yet, I do.
  23. Zanthan/Xanthan gum/gum xanthane is my nominee. This stuff is a great thickener. Works like a charm. However, it has taken out the process of reduction in many sauces and condiments that adorn the American table which certainly affects the flavor. Also, to my knowledge, it is the first major GMO food. Everyone eats that crap in catsup, spaghetti sauce (the canned kind), ice cream, etc, etc. Now, I think it has its place, and I'm not personally scared of GMO foods/crops. But, it shouldn't replace a major cooking process in my opinion. That just makes for bad food.
  24. I'm somewhat surprised that so many of you are blaming the pesticides in use on apples and other fruits and vegetables for something that acts like an allergic reaction. Keep in mind that plants also have defense systems. A lot of these defense systems have stimulating animals immune systems as their core. Most pesticides are much to small molecularly to stimulate an immune response. The products in the body that stimulate your immune system are sized on the order of proteins. Very very large molecules (depending on your scale as a chemist). A single pyrethrin molecule is really quite dwarfed in comparison. However, the apple, avocado, what-have-you, is from living material and does have large proteins that can cause immune response. Especially if you have a route to blood or tissue, such as an open sore in your mouth. Also, hypersensitivity does happen. So, when I finish medical school, and people come to me with issues like this, I will (and do even now) classify them as an allergic reaction and caution people to either monitor the reaction or avoid the food. An apple isn't worth dying for, but a life without apples is certainly a lower quality of life.
  25. Don't forget, there is the other other method of organic farming that works great on a small scale. You can control bugs and some plants with various animals such as ducks, turkeys, chickens, and geese. However, this is only feasible on the scale of a large garden, perhaps up to a few tens of acres (yeah, so that's a really darn big garden). Fifi's right. Even here in Nebraska, it's damned hard to keep the grasshoppers down. We just got a few days of subzero weather, and those SOB's with still be back next year. Okay, I just read the regs, and as a chemist, I'm on a bit of a soapbox next. Read at your own risk. There are sections in the regs from National Organic Program that really chap my ass. If we start at page 427, section 205.601 where they have the sythetic substances and following that, the nonsynthetic substances allowed. Can someone please give me a lucid argument why you can only use glycerin of non-synthetic origin? Glycerin is glycerin. It doesn't matter whether it came from olive oil, avocadoes, cows, or a factory. The stuff is still 3 carbon atoms 6 hydrogen atoms, and 3 oxygen atoms. There is no difference in how any of them act chemically or physically. Not one iota or epsilon. There is bad science and much NIMBY (not in my backyard fear) wrong-headedness that I see from reading those recommendations. I am disappointed in this program. It should be overhauled or scuttled. These regulations are shit. [/soapbox]
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