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  1. I'm a huge fan of all variations of spicy and savory cocktails. Bring on the Bloody Marys! And I completely get the concept of vinegar in cocktails, whether as a gastrique, or a classic combo like balsamic vinegar-and-strawberry. And then I saw this press release from Grey Poupon: http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/cool...CC%7D&dist=hppr Mustard in cocktails? An emphatic No, thank you. Closest I can stomach in this category is a horseradish or wasabi-infused liquor.
  2. Recently for my birthday, my girlfriend bought me a whole, 20-lb, bone-in jamon serrano: this, by the way, is one of the awesomest gifts you can get for a foodie. I thought about posting this in the Spain Cooking forum, but this is really more about how an American amateur cook can get the most out of this experience: I imagine it’s pretty commonplace for someone living in Spain. Below are an assortment of thoughts, suggestions, and questions around my relationship with this ham over the next few weeks. - The ham was purchased from Despana in New York, and it arrived promptly, boxed and cryovac'd. The size and heft is truly awe-inspiring, though I was a little disappointed that they chose to remove the hoof. - After posing and mugging for photo opportunities with the jamon for several days, we got around this weekend to slicing into it. There are several quite excellent tutorials on the web for how to go about carving a jamon. Here are a couple: http://www.ibergour.co.uk/en/jamon/consumo/ http://www.iberianfoods.co.uk/carving_serrano_ham_03.htm - Obviously, I don’t have a jamonera, the ham holding apparatus that you will see quality jamon purveyors use. I briefly considered purchasing one, but I couldn’t justify the cost or the space it would take up in my cramped kitchen. I just held up the foot end of the ham with my left hand, and carved with my right. This is very doable, and for a beginner, it gets you up close to the ham for more careful slicing. (The aromas hitting your nose from this up-close-and-personal carving are also intensely pleasurable.) Even though it's considerably more work, I definitely recommend going with a bone-in jamon: you get a very instructive appreciation of the anatomy and bone structure. After a couple of carving sessions though, I can certainly see the value of a jamonera: my left hand started to cramp up after a few minutes, and the stand would also be the ideal way to store the ham, as it's generally recommended not to let it rest flat. Any recommendations for a makeshift homemade jamonera? - Obviously as well, I don't have a jamonero, or a dedicated ham carving knife. Shapewise, you need something that's long, thin, and a little flexible, in order to be able to travel along the contours of the ham and cut uniformly thin slices. It also needs to be extremely sharp, and you'll find yourself constantly resteeling the knife as you work through the ham. I've had reasonable success with a filleting knife. Skill and experience is also a huge factor- the two chunks of meat you're trying to carve, the wide, fatty maza and the narrower contramaza, both sit in the concavity of the bone, so the surfaces you're trying to carve are not flat. I end up with a few nice pieces, a couple of pieces which are overly thick, and a lot of tasty little splinters of meat. - I was surprised at how much oil had exuded from the ham as I removed it from the packaging. Everything I've read says that the ham should be fine at room temperature, but this being the summer, sometimes room temp creeps up on the warm side. I wonder if that's causing a little more of the fat to soften than usual? - I've heard varying reports on how long a jamon stays good after you've started carving it: anywhere from 2-3 weeks to 2-3 months. I'd be curious if anyone else had any opinions. Being that it is summer, I'm going to do my best to finish the jamon in a month, but it's going to be a serious undertaking. Four people barely made dent in this thing over two days so far. I'd appreciate any advice on the best way to store the ham: I just have it sitting on my dining table: the cut surface is covered with strips of fat/rind, and then the entire ham is wrapped in plastic wrap. As I mentioned, it's generally recommended that the ham is stored on a stand or hanging, but neither of those options seems easy to achieve. - Most important, of course, is how should the ham be eaten? I've just been filching slices as I cut them, and jamon serrano that's freshly sliced really needs no accompaniment. It is significantly better than serrano that you might bring home freshly sliced from a store, as even that 30-60 minutes it spends in transit will begin to dry the meat. We also paired the ham with figs, a couple of cheeses (one blue, one aged Dutch cow's milk cheese), and a cranberry/walnut preserve. All were delicious, and I'm open to any other recommendations. I haven't tried cooking with the ham yet, but I'd be curious about any recommendations in that direction as well. Finally, at some point, I'll be left with the bone and a couple of large chunks of meat along the bone that aren't suitable for slicing: any recommendations for those items, other than a fantastic jamon stock? Again, this is something that everyone should buy at least once: it really give you a fresh appreciation for this amazing product. I'll post any other thoughts I have (and perhaps some pictures) as I continue to work through it over the upcoming weeks.
  3. Hi there, I am creating a wedding list and want to choose some saucepans, saute pans etc for the list. The shop my wedding list is at only has Tefal Jamie Oliver Hard Anodized pans plus his professional series pans. We want to have a set of good quality non-stick (not being professional cooks) so the professional series don't meet our needs - so we are planning to order the hard anodised pans ("anodized" for you in the US!). Does anyone have experience of these pans and recommend them (or not). Any thoughts most gratefully received Many thanks Justin
  4. When I visited Singapore several years ago, my hotel served both asian and european style breakfast. Of course I tried the asian one. A staple of the Singaporean breakfast (and probably lots of other places in Asia) is Congee, savory rice porridge. Very nice. I rember adding some sort of condiment on top. It was salty and maybe even had a bit fermented taste - some sort of fermented soy product perhaps? It was a nice contrast to the more mellow taste of the congee. Can someone suggest what this might have been? What do you usually eat with congee?
  5. by james hamilton-paterson. sorry if this has been discussed--did a search and couldn't find a previous thread on this book. Just finished it--it's pretty funny--a satire of all the Tuscany Year type books. But the funniest thing is that one of the protagonists is a kind of anti-cook. He considers himself a food adventurer--and develops insane food combinations--some of them not too distant from some of our more avant garde chefs, actually. Recipes are provided. One of the less disgusting is Otter with Lobster Sauce--to give you a general idea. Pets are not spared. It's in the tradition of the recipe as idea--here it's very bad idea. I can't get Udder with Butterscotch Sauce out of my head Fernet Branca is in almost every recipe, as well as almost every page as that's what the two main characters guzzle constantly. There's a very silly plot--brings Wodehouse to mind. Altogether entertaining. Zoe
  6. We just call these Grandma Jean's pickles because my grandmother was the first person I saw make them - about 10 years ago. I've been making them ever since, but I've discovered that lots of people make these. I've seen these pickles in Taste of Home Magazine, regional cookbooks, etc. They are absolutely cheating, but so good. You start with a big jar of kosher dills that you drain and slice: You put them back in the jar and top with 1 1/2 cups of sugar and 4 T. of vinegar: Nasty looking, huh: But after a week in the fridge, flipping them over every day or so, they will be sweet/briny/garlic-y and lovely. Does anyone else do these or some other kitchen cheat that works so well?
  7. This year, for the first time, those who aren't able to attend the ceremony will be able to watch live video of the James Beard awards on the new Devour.tv website. David Rosengarten will be hosting the broadcast, interviewing the nominees as they walk down the red carpet. And he will be covering the press room after the awards to interview the winners. Coverage will be broadcast on www.Devour.tv starting at 9 PM EST this Sunday.
  8. Last fall, on a trip to Italy we bought this Italian condiment. It turned out to be highly addictive and useful in many dishes. It has hot peppers, mushrooms, eggplant, olives and is great on pasta and crusty bread. We have been looking for it ever since. This is what it looks like. (I have come to understand that there are a few companies that make it.) We have searched Manhattan high and low for this item without success.We will be back again on Saturday. If anyone has seen it in Manhattan, please speak up. We would love to hear about it!! Many Thanks, HC edited: I noticed that I misspelled condiment in the subject line, but am unable to correct it. Oh, well.
  9. Patris and I were playing with pates de fruit last week and I brought along a couple of the layered chocolates that I had made. I made a pear pate de fruit layer, and then for the ganache I made a clove in dark chocolate. I also used a layer of the pear pate de fruit with Greweling's dark and stormy, which is white chocolate with ginger and dark rum. I was a little disappointed in the combinations, I didn't think the pear was strong enough to stand up to the dark chocolate that I dipped them in. That got us thinking about what would make good combinations of fruit jellies with flavoured ganaches. Patty came up with some nice combinations - cherry/almond, cherry/vanilla, apple/cinnamon/caramel and orange/cream (a classic creamsicle). The pates de fruit I like best are blackcurrent, raspberry, passion fruit and kalamansi. I'd love to hear peoples ideas of what combinations of jelly with ganache they think would work well, allowing for the chocolate component.
  10. Can anybody recommend any good books for chutney/relish making? Preferably something that's available in the UK - but open to looking elsewhere. Many Thanks Darryl.
  11. I am having trouble finding a comprehensive list of James Beard award winners past and present, if anyone has a URL that is comprehensive I would greatly appreciate it. At last check the foundations websites list was imcomplete
  12. Chemists measure chilli sauce hotness with nanotubes
  13. I love good jampong (korean-chinese seafood noodle soup). I'm looking to make them at home and my attempts at replicating a great rich broth have failed. Would appreciate if someone would post a good recipe. Soup
  14. I'm a weird guy. I think soy sauces are akin to fine wine and should be treated as such. It is such an unappreciated artform because of what is available these days in the US. As a result, I've been exploring the world of high quality, artisan, traditionally made soy sauces to break away from the La Choys of the world. And the world is endless, with soy sauces aged for years in oak barrels, unpasteurized soy sauces, etc. I've only bought a couple of brands so far and open a few. http://www.mitoku.com/products/shoyu/johsen.html Mitoku Brand Johsen Organic Shoyu, and Mitoku Brand Sakurazawa Yuuki unpasteurized Shoyu Johsen shoyu is quite different than most soy sauces I've tried, as it has toasty flavors of chocolate and coffee in it. Something about it reminds me much of a nice dark beer. Sakurazawa is basically the essence of umami. It has an incredibly sweet aroma and flavor and is very subtle on the salt. I have a small bottle of Mitoku's Yaemon Organic Tamari and Eden's select Shoyu that I plan on trying later, but there are so many out there (some that are quite expensive and are made by family owned breweries). What are some soy sauces out there that you would treasure like your favorite bottle of wine?
  15. I've been wondering this for awhile. When I visit pretty much any barbecue joint here in Kansas City I always receive a small pile of pickles with my meal. Does anyone know the origin or the reason for this practice? I always eat them, but they never cease to puzzle me.
  16. I thought it might be worth noting that the following chefs have made it to the finalist list for the 2008 James Beard Award for Best Chef New York, particularly, the third chef on the list: BEST CHEF: NEW YORK CITY (FIVE BOROUGHS) Michael Anthony Gramercy Tavern Terrance Brennan Picholine David Chang Momofuku Ssäm Bar Wylie Dufresne WD-50 Gabriel Kreuther The Modern Also of note: Jean Georges and the Batali/Bastianich team are the only New York-based restaurateurs nominated for Best Restaurateur. Anthos is the only New York restaurant nominated for Best New Restaurant. Two New York restaurants have been nominated for Outstanding Restaurant: Jean Georges and Gramercy Tavern. Good luck to all the nominees.
  17. I admit that I have a fear of botulism, since I grew up canning things at home. I'm always cautious and would rather toss something than take any chances. But how do I know what's good when I buy it? I ordered some Lebanese green pickled olives online, and when I opened them they were really fizzy. I thought it was from being shaken, but after 20 minutes they are still fizzing. Is this normal? If I opened home-canned peaches and they were doing that I'd throw them away. But I've never had this sort of olive and am not sure what they are supposed to do. If anyone knows, please help. I took a very small bite after smelling them, and I still can't tell for sure.
  18. Hi, I was reading Amy's (smallword) blog and I noticed she uses butter and soy sauce as a flavoring in broiled seafood dishes. Is this a common technique in Japan? Amy used it when making scallops. What else could I use this on? I'm really intrigue since so me they seem like two seperate worlds coming together. Most asian cuisines I know of do not use dairy so I wondered if this was something new. Thanks
  19. Does anyone know where I can buy jellyfish to cook with at home? Somewhere in Chinatown, I assume, but I haven't come across it yet.
  20. Hi everyone, First off, I'm sorry if I'm posting this in the wrong board....I didn't know where to put it, and since the gala occurs in NYC, I figured that was my best bet. I've always been really curious about going to the James Beard Awards Gala, simply because the menu of offered dishes always look quite incredible. However, as I've never been, I have no idea if its actually worth the hefty price tag (even as a student the price is still $200!). Is the food nearly as good as it would be in the actual restaurants, or is it dumbed down/simplified so that it can be mass produced and served to 1000s of people without getting cold? If anyone has been to the banquet in the past, I would greatly appreciate his/her input. Many thanks! My best, Charlie
  21. I know you do not need to refrigerate the full bone but I have a quarter pound of slices and it feels weird to leave it out. Is it ok to keep it in the fridge? Thanks.
  22. Host’s Note I decided to split this off from the Regalade topic because it seemed to stand by itself as a topic for discussion. John Well, I do think that La Régalade is still by far one of the hottest bistrots in Paris. Mostly, I think it remains the model for "bistronomiques", and that few offer that food quality at that price, actually applying grands restaurants techniques and care at a great price. I was so excited to discover that good truffles have finally appeared this year, and not looking forward to the 230 eur of the feuilleté belle humeur or the 350 of the Rostang menu. La Régalade sounded like the way to satisfy my longing without having to reinforce my stake in organised crime. Anyway, some pictures and more specific comments here.
  23. Over in the Pennsylvania board, I report on a discovery I made at DiBruno's in the Italian Market today: Jamón Iberico is now available in Philadelphia. I'm assuming that this means that you can now find it in a handful of other U.S. cities. I had understood that Federal rules prohibited its import. What has changed, pray tell? At the price being charged for it, it's going to be the rare treat indeed.
  24. Popped into DiBruno's in the Italian Market this afternoon for some window shopping, and in the midst of the cheese grazing and search for the name of that Spanish cheese I served on Christmas Eve, I saw something that looked like a slab of bacon with a sign on top of it: "Jamon Iberico "Finally available in the USA!" After describing how it's made and where it comes from, the sign concluded: "One taste and you'll understand and agree that it's worth "$99.99 a pound" Did DiBruno's have to smuggle this ham into the United States? Is it that difficult to produce? Made in extremely small quantities from a hard-to-raise breed of pig? Where's Ferran Adria when I need him? And would anyone be interested in going into a syndicate to buy a pound?
  25. Yuzu Kanten Jelly This is a refreshing agar jelly, which can be made and served at room temperature. When using citrus with agar, add juice to hot mixture, and process citrus by some method before adding to final mixture, to avoid problems with poor set. 4 g (1 tsp agar powder) will set 400 - 500 ml of liquid. Use less liquid for a firmer jelly, or for ingredients with acid (citrus) or fat (milk). Use more liquid for a jelly to be eaten the same day, for a softer jelly, and for simple jellies. 2 T yuzu jam (yuzu-cha) 1 T fresh yuzu juice, or 1 t yuzu-su, optional 4 g or 1 t powdered agar (kanten) 80 g sugar (can reduce to 60g) 400 ml water honey or syrup from preserved yuzu, if using * Stir agar powder into water, bring to the boil, stirring, and simmer 2 minutes until totally dissolved. * Add sugar, dissolve, and simmer 2 minutes or till completely dissolved (important!). Add 1-2 T yuzu juice or yuzu-su if you like - can make jelly hard to set, but tastes fresher. * Allow to cool and thicken slightly, add yuzu-cha. * Wet a square kanten mold or whatever mold you wish to use, pour in liquid. * Allow to set at room temperature. Turn out and cut, serve as desired. After 2-3 days, kanten gels will start to shed water and become flabby. *Alternatives: Slice 1-2 yuzu and put in the fridge in a baggie for a few days with a generous drizzle of honey – or peel thinly (shred and reserve peel), peel off and discard white pith, slice thinly (discard seeds) and preserve peel and fruit slices in honey as above. To use, drain off and reserve some of the syrup, add fruit and peel to agar mixture as it cools and thickens. Serve with a drizzle of syrup over the top. Keywords: Dessert, Vegetarian, Japanese ( RG2074 )
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