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Marlene

Camping, Princess Style

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2 hours ago, kayb said:

 

I highly recommend the Out of Milk app. It's free and it lives on the home screen of my Android.

Has it improved?

I tried it 5 or 6 years ago, and found it crazy-making. Ordinarily I make my list on a whiteboard over the course of the week, and it takes me maybe a total of 5 minutes. OOM "simplified" that to about 45 minutes, and using it in-store was a trial as well.


“What is called sound economics is very often what mirrors the needs of the respectably affluent.” - John Kenneth Galbraith

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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"" Out of Milk app ""

 

wonder what it tracks ..

 

"" It's free "

 

I recommend this book :

 

https://www.amazon.com/True-Grit-Novel-Charles-Portis/dp/B008PIC86I

 

and the movie , that was mighty fine :

 

https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/true_grit_2010

 

the book was even finer

 

no worries :

 

in the intro to each

 

it discusses   ' Free '

 

a litte , but not to much M.R. now

 

Snow Comming

 

have to be ready.

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If you ever are near the Salton Sea, go up Highway 111 about 15 miles to the Oasis Date Gardens. It's become a regular stop for us, often twice a year. 

 

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That date shake directly above came with our lunch order instead of afterward, as I'd requested, so it was starting to soften. Still. This is a milkshake that is much too thick for a straw. It's rich, and creamy, and utterly decadent. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

 

We drove there one day to do our annual date tasting and buying, and to get burgers. (It was a good time to leave the trailer, since the generator was 150 miles away, being repaired.) The little cafe offers salads, a variety of burgers and non-beef sandwiches, and frozen desserts. Once you've got your order, you can sit at tables inside or go out to the lush lawn and enjoy your food at a picnic table.

 

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We have learned that their traffic comes in spurts, and when there's no crowd at the counter it's time to place an order. I got in *just ahead* of a group of a dozen people, placed our lunch order, and then visited the rest of the store. There are gift packages, not just of dates although those dominate. For instance, I also saw bottles of prickly pear syrup. The packages allow a choice of dates in quantities up to 10-pound boxes of various date varieties. There are smaller boxes, and date candies, and dates stuffed with walnuts.

 

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There's a table with samples and descriptions of the different varieties they offer. There's a TV room with an informational video and informational posters. Their mascot, Raul Medjool, presides over that room.

 

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Then there's the wall with bins of the dates for purchase. They provide bags and gloves. Please don't sample from the bins, and please do use the gloves!

 

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If you ever get a chance to do a date-tasting, I recommend it. The differences are notable, and all the dates I've tried there are better than the dates compressed into a brick that I'm used to from my childhood. (No doubt those boxes suffer from age.) Over the years I've developed some favorites: medjool are the most popular for their size, and lend themselves to stuffing, but they're also the most expensive. Honey dates are a little less intense, just as firm, but a touch smaller and a buck or two cheaper per pound. Barhi dates are soft and pulpy, perfect for baking, especially if you want to make a paste. There are taste differences among the varieties that I have trouble defining, but they're noticeable. That said, all the varieties have good crop years and less-good crop years. This year's Khadrawy were good, but last year I skipped them altogether. This year's Black Khaisab are as soft and delectable as the best Barhi, and considerably bigger. I bought some of both along with my usual faves.

 

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Our burgers arrived: two thick, juicy, flavorful bacon cheeseburgers with onion, lettuce, tomato and pickle. Mustard and mayo are provided in packets. Potato chips and a sample of date cake are included with the meal. My darling, who is from the Midwest, looked askance at the lettuce and said he wouldn't need a salad that day. I was elated, because the burger was exactly as I think a burger should be.

 

And they were good. No, they were excellent. The. Best. Burgers. I've eaten or even seen in a long, long time.

 

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I said so to the women at the counter, and asked them to convey my complements to the cook. Better still (from their perspective) I put an extra tip in the jar.

 

The. Best. Burger. I've had in at least a year.

 


Edited by Smithy Added "thick, juicy, flavorful" to description of those luscious cheeseburgers (log)
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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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South of the Salton Sea, in the little town of Calipatria, sits an unassuming place called Market Square. If the grocery store inside the building has a different name, I can't tell you what it is. 

 

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The building looks kempt and fairly new, but that is no guarantee of vitality. There is a newish- and once nice-looking gas and food mart a mile or so north that has utterly failed despite being less than 5 years old. (We know the age because we watched the building go up.) We are mystified as to why it didn't succeed, given its location in town along a highway, with good parking and other promising elements. So looks aren't everything. Anyway, back to the Market Square: we stopped there a couple of years ago on our way from the Salton Sea to our desert camping spot, hoping to avert some catastrophe like having to drive to town for beer. We've been stopping there each time through town ever since.

 

Its produce section is very limited, and I didn't bother with pictures. The aisles of canned and boxed goods are pretty well stocked. The selection of Mexican food items is especially good, but there is also a good selection of run-of-the-mill "American" (no, don't ask me to define it) and a fair selection of what passes for Chinese and Italian in Middle America. You'd be out of luck of you wanted Middle Eastern food there, but one can't have everything.

 

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The beer selection is pretty good. It's nice to be able to go into a grocery store and buy beer - not just the 3.2% stuff you can get in Minnesota grocery stores, but real beer. There are microbrews and mainstream brews. The dairy selection is also better than I see in many small stores like this.

 

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What brings us back each time is the butcher counter.

 

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Every time we've been there we've seen some great special. Last fall it was pork shoulder roast for $1.99/lb. The butcher was good enough to cut the smallest roast in two for us, and each half was barely small enough to fit our roasting pot. We were well pleased with both halves, and thought about buying another such roast this time, but my darling was particularly jonesing for pork shoulder steaks. (If you think you're seeing a theme here, you're correct.) I was jonesing for some of their flap meat, or marinated flank steak - something to wrap in tortillas with sauteed onions, red bell peppers, and other items of my choosing. I'd had those tortillas, and that ambition, for far too long. I needed to scratch that itch.

 

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We bought pork shoulder steaks, forgetting that we still had a pair from Stater Bros the previous week. (In truth, we probably would have bought more anyway.) We also bought some boneless, skinless chicken hindquarter meat and some of the carne asada meat you see just above, at the left. A 10-pound bag of chicken for $7.99 was tempting, but when I realized it was hindquarters I passed. We hadn't made THAT much room in the fridge and freezer yet.

 

Then we moved on: through the cultivated area, up above sea level for the first time in a week, across the Coachella Canal and across the Imperial Dunes. The dunes with their beautiful swirls remind me of meringue, but there's nothing to eat there that you don't pack in, or buy at one of the settlements. Cultivation doesn't resume until you're near the Colorado River.

 

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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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About that carne asada and the tortillas: it took a few days, but the elements were that meat, the aforementioned onions, red (no, I don't do green) bell peppers, shredded cheese, refried beans, and red enchilada sauce.

 

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And the tortillas. Oh, dear. When it came time to assemble the enchiladas, I found the tortillas to be impossibly brittle. These were large, fajita-sized flour tortillas that had been refrigerated for at least a week. Dipping them in warm enchilada sauce made them fall apart. Microwaving them didn't seem to help. They refused to bend nicely and neatly and wrap into burrito shape to lie in the baking dish without breakage. I did my best with them anyway, and loaded them into a baking dish. Then I coated the lot with most of a package of shredded cheese. Shredded cheese is a great disguise, isn't it?

 

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The garnish was chopped cilantro for me, chopped parsley for him. Chips added a nice crunch.

 

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This made us happy for two meals, and heated the trailer for one.

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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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Ive never seen boneless skinless chicken hindquarter meat.

 

I did like the jared TexMex stuff

 

I used to get that in California.

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18 minutes ago, rotuts said:

Ive never seen boneless skinless chicken hindquarter meat.

 

 

It is in every Latin market here. Great flavor and cheap. 


Edited by heidih (log)
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5 hours ago, heidih said:

 

It is in every Latin market here. Great flavor and cheap. 

 

The store I get it from calls it Chicken Leg Meat.

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Porthos Potwatcher
The Once and Future Cook

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what might skinless , boneless leg meat cost ?

 

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2 hours ago, rotuts said:

what might skinless , boneless leg meat cost ?

 

 

In this case, they cost $1.99/lb. I thought that was a good price, but @heidih or others with ready access to the right markets may think otherwise. Boneless skinless thigh meat usually costs more in my experience.

 

20200114_123912.jpg

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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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Have not hd acc ess to Hispanic market lately. Do not recall. 

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im interested in Makets 

 

all sorts.

 

I was thinking of making some Chicken Stock

 

in my iPot.   my usual 4 x ( possibly higher , based on Freezer Volume ) method , where I use the previous stock

 

from frozen bricks that i Vac , on each iPotting.

 

somewhere on the WWW there was an analysis of Meat // carcass

 

for various Chicken parts.   I do understand that Parts will always be more expensive

 

than whole , as someone did some work , and should be compensated.

 

Im guessing Thighs one out , price / meat

 

maybe an addition of book's illustrated ?

 

so ,  $ 1.99  is quite attractive for dark meat for

 

"less work cooking "

 

Enchiladas , caserones 

 

in my area , I can almost set my Monthly Clock

 

on Various Chicken parts   ( thighs , drumsticks )  

 

dropping to $ 0.79 / lbs

 

if thighs really have more meat ,  even is the bone + fat waste 

 

is 50 % , and I just plop then whole in the iPot 

 

and its easy after 30 min to remove the bones // skin

 

that might be the way id like to go.

 

If I hade a Wave of Energy  ,  I roast the thighs first

 

why go to this sort of trouble to make CkSk ?

 

all commercial brands are not only porcessed

 

they help you out w your Monthly if not Yearly

 

requirement of NaCl.     not so much my idea of GoodEats.

 

and the iPot does almost all of the work !

 

 

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As a comparison my upscale market (Bristol Farms) is the only close by that sells chicken backs.$1.99/lb  I roast them and they make a great chicken stock. Unfortunately the chicken feet are further away though they freeze well (also excellent for freaking out teen boys when they rummage for snacks in the freezer)

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I save chicken bones and make stock from them. Once in a while I'll get a whole chicken and break it down into its component parts - in which case the back and neck are saved for stock -  but usually if I get a whole chicken I'll roast the whole thing. Then the carcass goes into the stock pot. The Instant Pot does indeed make great stock!

 

I've never tried adding chicken feet. I suppose they're good for a collagen boost? 

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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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10 minutes ago, Shelby said:

Oh yeah.  The best stock I ever make has feet in it.  The stock is gelatin -like.  Super good.

 

Yup - gives you that lip smacky thing in a good way,

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no CkFt

 

in the Burb's

 

and don't these days get into 

 

BOS Chinatown as I used to 

 

😂

 

 

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I typically use 1 lb of feet to 4 lbs of everything else. I like using a lb of wings along with backs and a carcass if available. If I'm planning on making wonton soup or some other Chinese soup I toss in some pork neck bones. Chicken feet may not be so readily available if you live outside a big city or near an Asian supermarket. Where we shop in Berkeley they are reliably available along with all other parts. Must be a healthy community of people making chicken soup around here.

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Speaking of chicken: look what I scored in Yuma last weekend!

 

20200121_092821.jpg

 

Fresh-off-the-tree tangelos and mandarins! And yes, I know those aren't chickens. :P  But they did give me a chance at one of my favorite roast chicken treatments: Citrus-Marinated Roast Chicken. I didn't follow the recipe exactly last night, but this was based on Fine Cooking's recipe of that name. Here's the before and after:

 

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Couple that with cauliflower that had been sprinkled with curry powder and drizzled with olive oil, then roasted until brown, steamed until soft and mashed, all in a clay pot,

 

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and we had a delicious dinner. The juices and roasting sweetened those red onions, and the juices enhanced the cauliflower mash nicely. I was a bit worried that the curry powder would clash with the citrus flavors, but it didn't.

 

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(His plate looks more full, but my piece of chicken was better browned. Neither of us had any complaints.)

 

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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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I'm using citrus more and more lately.  Gives everything such a kick.

 

Meant to also say your meal looks soooo good.  Do the tangelos and mandarins skins' get tender enough to eat?  I love lemons that I can eat along with chicken.  Or maybe I'm just weird.


Edited by Shelby (log)
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8 hours ago, Shelby said:

I'm using citrus more and more lately.  Gives everything such a kick.

 

Meant to also say your meal looks soooo good.  Do the tangelos and mandarins skins' get tender enough to eat?  I love lemons that I can eat along with chicken.  Or maybe I'm just weird.

 

 

No, there's nothing weird about eating the citrus skin! I used to eat lemons, rind and all, raw! The peels for the mandarins and tangelos do get soft enough to eat. I found them a touch bitter, but my darling loved them. Mileage varies.

 

Speaking of varying mileage: he strongly prefers sweet onions (Vidalia, Walla Walla, etc) and looks askance when I buy red onions. I want to emphasize that these red onions turned silky and sweet with the treatment they got. Maybe sweet onions would have done the same thing, though. I suppose next time I'll have to try some of both to compare them.


Edited by Smithy Added missing word "weird" (log)
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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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5 hours ago, Shelby said:

I'm using citrus more and more lately.  Gives everything such a kick.

 

Meant to also say your meal looks soooo good.  Do the tangelos and mandarins skins' get tender enough to eat?  I love lemons that I can eat along with chicken.  Or maybe I'm just weird.

 

 

I use citrus every night.  Usually a mai tai but sometimes Mississippi punch.

 

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Our outdoor kitchen is set up for cooking either over a campfire or the camp stove.

 

20200122_111056.jpg

 

We've used the stove a couple of times now. So far we've enjoyed a campfire without cooking over it. That may change tonight. Our first night's cook over the camp stove was a bit overdone, due to lack of attention.

 

20200122_111230.jpg

 

We are both pilots and flight instructors, careful to establish who is pilot-in-command of a particular flight. Wouldn't you think we could avoid burnt burgers because each thought the other was watching? O.o

 

 

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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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Oh well- assumptions rarely a good plan but more frequent than not.  So would you say the difference between the fire and the stove is more ambiance than taste or???

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