Amateur Foodie

  • Location: San Francisco
  • Favorite foods: Mac and Cheese
    Creme Brulee
  • Last bite on earth: Tea Egg

Latest Comments

Fire Up the Grill for Vietnamese Caramelized Lemongrass Pork Chops

@r32nissan, my standard Com Tam order would not be complete without tau hu ky (ground shrimp wrapped in bean curd skin) ;)

@Kenji, I also confirm that my family definitely douse the rice with the nuoc cham (my Mom makes a nuoc cham so good, people have been known to drink it). I know it makes the rice difficult to pick up, but the rice plate mentioned (which can include this grilled pork chop) is eaten with knife and fork. Since you are in the SF Bay Area these days, you can get this at any restaurant that has "Com Tam" on it's menu and/or in it's name.

What You're Really Getting When You Buy Parmesan Cheese in America

Interesting side note about parmagiano reggiano production, now increasingly made by Sikh immigrants:

What You're Really Getting When You Buy Parmesan Cheese in America

Costco carries Stravecchio Parmigiano Reggiano for a reasonable price. It's an incredible cheese and well worth the price. Actually, given the amount of love and care that goes into each wheel, it's a bargain.

A few years ago, Trader Joe's carried a Parmesan cheese from Australia which was almost as good as Parm Reg, seriously. I bought as much as I could eat. Alas, like most things at TJ's, it disappeared from the cheese shelf and I haven't seen it since.

Make a Splash With Bukkake Udon (Japanese Cold Noodles With Broth)

My favorite udon dish. My local ramen shop use to have this dish and I ordered it every time I went there. Then those %^&^%&^$$ took it off the menu and I haven't been back since.

@Daniel, the bukkake is nice with a tempura shrimp. A nice contrast in texture and temperature.

Easiest Summer Ever: How to Make Your Watermelon, Feta, and Mint Salad Even Better

This is one of my favorite summer salads. Now I want to try it with the lemon zest.

@scalfin, not a prank. as you can tell by the comments, it's pretty darn good and so refreshing. Try it this summer.

How to Make Zhug, the Yemenite Hot Sauce You'll Want to Put on Everything

@weedy, cilantro refers to the green plant. Coriander refers to the seed.

Everything You Can Do With a Container of Sour Cream

My favorite dip for fruit (especially green grapes) : Mix 3 parts sour cream with 1 part sugar, optional: vanilla extract.

This is the BEST dip for fruit. Even better than chocolate, in my opinion.

Easiest Summer Ever: Braised Long Beans With Tomatoes and Garlic

I currently have a load of fresh romas. Can I substitute them for the canned tomatoes?

How to Make Awesome Jam From Fresh Plums

Kenji, I'm sort of in your area. I'll take a quart of jam :)

The Vegan Experience: How to Make a Vietnamese Noodle Salad That Eats Like a Meal

@Kenji, an alternative to the yuba is fried slices/slivers of taro or potato.

Fried Pork Rinds Get a Thai Treatment in This Issan-Style Salad

Would it be wrong of me to add some preserved duck eggs to this salad?

Hey Chef, How Can I Use up Extra Jam?

Surprised that none of the chefs add a spoon or so into a pan sauce or warm it up for a glaze for grilled meats.

How to Make Meatball Pizza

I grew up in Western Connecticut and remember meatball pizzas for all long as I loved pizza (which is probably 6 years old). They were rarely the mini meatballs, more of the quartered or halved large ones. They were my favorite, even more than pepperoni. Those meatballs look great. So glad it's Meatball Week!

In Defense of St. Louis-Style Pizza

@Kenji, I was mentally cursing you as I finished this awesome article. The pizza sounds great, but where the heck am I going to get Provel cheese???? Until now, I had never even heard of it. So instead of bitching about it, I did a search and found a recipe for homemade Provel (& tested by a St.Louis native too).

This Week at Serious Eats World Headquarters

Love the birthday cheeseboard instead of cake!

The Food Lab's Definitive Guide to Prime Rib

@jds7717, I've made prime rib on the BGE using this method,

No initial searing for color. You do give it a blast of heat (500F) at the end for the color. Worked well my first time around and I've used the same method since. The only difficulty was in getting that temp down to 200-225F on the BGE

The World of Buttercreams: 6 Varieties to Try at Home

Love this! My favorites are the flour and Italian buttercreams. American buttercream is just way too sweet.

The Food Lab's Definitive Guide to Prime Rib

@ExNYer in SF: I call BS on the butcher at Andronico's. I live in the South Bay and Lunardi's & Draeger's both carry rib roasts year round. And I don't even have to pre-order it, though it's a good idea to call and see if they have any especially during the holidays. Heck even Safeway and Costco sell a rib roast. Also, just because they don't normally stock it does not mean that they can't order it for you. I've ordered slabs of pork belly (with skin on) from Lunardi's when I was making pancetta. They can order as much as you need. Go look for meat counters or at other specialty shops. Here's an list of some good butchers in SF,

Why You Should Own a Pair of Good Kitchen Shears

I've had the same Messermeister scissors for almost 10 years and counting. They get sharpened professional twice a year and show no signs of falling apart. Best kitchen tool ever and sometimes when I'm especially lazy, it replaces my equally loved 10" chef's knife.

Going to Hawaii? 10 Must-Eat Local Specialties

Got back from Maui last week and I totally missing the shaved ice and musubi. This trip was my husband first introduction to musubi and we got a few from The General Store. One of which was made with the jalapeno Spam and it was pretty darn good. And of course, had to have the loco moco from Da Kitchen.

How to Make Queso Fresco, the World's Easiest Cheese

When making this type of cheese, you want to salt the curds and not the milk because salt is hygroscopic. Salting the milk will make for a wetter cheese which is not what you want for this type of fresh cheese. pH is not a factor here since salt is neutral, even in solution. Nor is the ionic force of the NaCl strong enough to prevent the curds from forming.