I eat and drink. I cook so I can do both more and better. I exercise so I can do both longer. I'm not big but I'm not dainty either. "Yes I will add the fried egg to that." - Only in Pittsburgh is a fried egg considered a condiment.

  • Location: Pittsburgh, PA
  • Favorite foods: Spaghetti Carbonara, Steak, Hot Peppers, Cheese (all types), Salamis (all types), chicken wings, garlic, cilantro, pizza. . .

Wanted - Quality Vegetarian Cookbook

thanks for the suggestions of the books. It seems that the same books come up a lot. . . Anyone care to share a recipe out of the book they cooked that they liked?

How to order my very particular type of eggs?

Over hard might get you what you want. But if you have a single specific way you like your eggs and only eat them one way you should probably get pancakes when you eat out for breakfast. But eat all you like at home!

Bake the Book: Crêpes: 50 Savory and Sweet Recipes

I like crepes with nutella or peanut butter best. But also a nice crepe wrapped around thin sliced parmesan cheese, prosciutto, and melon. I do mean thin sliced.

Cook the Book: 'The Country Cooking of Italy'

I would love to make flavored vinegars, jams, chutneys, and sauces.

carbonara techniques

Carbonara is a sexy dish. I love to make it. I meditate on it. The quality of the ingredients make the dish better. Good cheese, bacon (I've never used guanciale), eggs, and pepper.

This isn't a recipe. Just thoughts. I like slab bacon cut thick and slow cooked in a pan. Drain half the grease I like to put diced garlic in the leftover bacon grease and add it.

Mix the eggs in a bowl let come to room temp and reserve some pasta water and temper the egg mixture to keep it from scrambling. Use the eggs, cheese, and water to make the sauce silky and not creamy. It should shimmer and coat the pasta. Add it all to hot pasta and toss at the table. Definitely best to serve immediately with fresh ground pepper.

This is a practice, practice, practice dish. it gets better the more you do it.

No peas, no chicken, and no milk or cream. Only dried spaghetti. Other noodles are too thick or thin.

I've never warmed a dish for this. Never noticed any congealing. But I bet that a warm bowl wouldn't hurt. And I totally disagree about leftovers. Leftover carbonara is great for breakfast the next day lightly fried in a pan with some oil. I like to toss it with fresh parsley.

Cook the Book: 'Guy Fieri Food'

Italian Hoagie with capicolla, mortadella, sopresseta, provolone, and gardinera.

Cook the Book: 'Bobby Flay's Throwdown!'

Spaghetti Carbonara.

Cook the Book: 'The Heirloom Tomato'

fried green tomatoes, salsa, caprese, blt,sprinkled with cheese and baked.

Tried anything new recently?

I ate chicken feet today. I don't like them one bit. It was like eating nothing but gooey chicken skin. . . The broth had good flavor.

You can eat a whole box of _______in one sitting!!

triscuits, goldfish, cheez-its, saltines

Pulled pork in smoker/kettle grill

When I began to use my smoker somebody here directed me to Amazing Ribs. This site has been a great help to me (and my friends). I have nothing but great things to say about it.

Help! Raspberries going bad in the Fridge!

You can drink your raspberries.

Muddle them with a mint leaf in a Collins glass, add simple syrup, ice, more mint for garnish and rum.

Cook the Book: 'Fiesta at Rick's'

Either Mario Batali, Jamie Oliver, or Alton Brown. I'd never be able to choose so they'd have to draw straws to get to meet me.

Food to bring when flying

. . . so I'm not sure what you can bring. I suppose if you can buy it at the airport you can eat it on the plane and dispose of it if need be at customs.

Sorry I hit post too soon.

Food to bring when flying

I always bring a trail mix (containing chocolate) and beef jerky on any trip. But I've never flown to another country.

Poll: Do You Like Crisp or Chewy Bacon?

Both have their moments.


I have a lot of it growing wild in my back yard.

A microwave and an oven. What can I make?

Tupperware stuffed oven baked microwave oven is awesome! It's loaded with essential plastics and heavy metals.

I'd get a friend to come visit and bring me my skillet, a pan, and a wok.

Red beans and rice for cheap, healthy, and vegetarian.

electric stove, dealbreaker?

I've never owned a gas stove. I grew up with electric, had electric in college, and have an electric in my house now. It's fine. I'd rather have gas. And in my next house I probably will.

What's the story behind your SE screen name?

My name has nothing to do with food.

My nickname in college was "Joe Boo" (or is the proper way to spell it "Jo Bu" anyway I spell it "Joe Boo") as in the voodoo guy from the movie Major League. It comes from a drunken night, "Hey Bartender! Joe Boo needs a refill. . ."

On the internet I never want to be JoeBoo158736234234 or whatever number I need to add at the end of it to get a unique user name. So I added the Q as in John Q. Public. And voila! Here I am. Joe Q. Boo by screen name. Joseph Querulous Boo esq. in formal settings. Or just plain Boo to my friends.

Poll: Do You Toast Your Pop-Tarts?

@soozm32. Those fiber one things don't taste so bad (just too sweet), but I feel their fiber is lacking. No matter what it says on the package nutritional information. I think they don't use the best type of fiber. So even though it sort of gives you more fiber it's not as good.

When does a Hamburger become a Meatloaf Sandwich?

I'm going to disagree. One of those things is definitely not a hamburger no matter how good it tastes. Once you go beyond meat and spices then add binders you've just created meatloaf. Tasty. But meatloaf. No big deal, you could call it a loaf burger.

It's like a pizza versus a calzone. Similar ingredients but two different things. Both delicious.

Has Anyone Ever Tried Tuaca Liqueur?

I love Tuaca. You can mix it in Red Bull. It's very tasty.

Cook the Book: 'The Frankies Spuntino Kitchen Companion & Cooking Manual'

Carbonara. Also greens and beans with sausage and pasta. Pasta con sarde.

Got a Cuisinart Ice Cream maker: What shall I make?

Pizza Ice cream.

Wanted - Quality Vegetarian Cookbook

I eat meat. But I'm looking for a cookbook to make the vegetable dishes I make even better and to maybe eat a meat free meal or two. I did a search of previous topics but the ones I found were a couple years old. Also I'm NOT going to consider How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. I'm just not a Bitman fan.

Does anyone have any recommendations? What book do you like and MOST important - why do you like it?

Got the Book - So far so good.

After a longer wait than I thought I received my copy of Forgotten Skills of Cooking that I won from Serious Eats (Thanks guys! And thanks Adam!). I flipped through it a little and I read the section on tomatoes. If I hadn't won it I never would have checked it out and I'm glad I won it. So for it is unlike any of the books I have in my collection. It seems to combine gardening tips, cooking, and preserving. Not many references go from plant, to table, to pantry. Thanks Serious Eats.

Half Price Books Purchases - Food books

I make lots of trips to Half Price Books and I often find decent food books. This time I bought:

the Chez Panisse Pasta, Pizza, Calzone book by Alice Waters - mostly because of the all seasonal pasta ideas.

I also got The Fortune Cookie Chronicles: Adventures in the World of Chinese Food by Jennifer 8 Lee. I read a review and it sounded interesting.

Then of course I found a copy of Rulhman's Ratio my first trip to HPB after I broke down and ordered it from Amazon. I would have saved 5 bucks.

After a good work out I will eat you all.

HUNGRY! I went to the gym this morning and like every time I head to the gym my appetite has kicked into overdrive. Nothing that approaches a reasonable meal seems to satisfy. Eat protein and complex carbohydrates? Doesn't work. Isn't working now. I guess I should just accept that increased metabolism is a good thing.

But man if this keeps up, by lunchtime I'm gonna start looking at my coworkers and start wondering how best to prepare them and what sort of sauce would go well with them. And I work in IT so just imagine the cholesterol. . .

Snowpocalips 2010 - Free Pizza at the Office

Well there are about 6 suckers on my floor out of 60 that are in the office today due to round two of the blizzard. In our "defense" when we left this morning there was only about two to three inches of new snow on the ground (it actually looks OK out there - the best it's been since we were hit with round one).

Anyway, the boss is ordering us (and the fools on the other two floors) pizza and I'm actually excited about it. And I just realized that free pizza always makes me happy (also free cookies do as well). I'm actually salivating thinking about it. Can anyone else relate?

Kicking my Coke (Diet) Habit

I knew I was in trouble when I started getting that 5th can of Diet Coke from the vending machine. Last week I was staring at the pile of cans on my desk thinking, not for the first time, that maybe I shouldn't be drinking this much diet coke. Now I'm sitting at my desk alternately sipping on this coffee and bottle of water and I'm thinking about Diet Coke. I need something else to drink. Maybe I should just keep drinking this water until the craving for Diet Coke goes away. The funny thing is the first time I tried Diet Coke, when kicking my regular non-diet soda habit, I hated it. . .

50 Cent Wing Hangover!

Oh man. I love chicken wings. This dive bar has whole wings (all three parts) for 50 cents. Sure the waitresses have lots of "experience". There are no windows in the place and the air has been recycling since 1975. Half the TVs still have dials on them. But these wings. Cooked to perfection every time by a man called "The Midget". According to the yellowed hand printed sign they come in 5 flavors "Plain, BBQ, Dry Spice, Buffalo, and Gold" (honey mustard). And they are a quarter on Mondays and Tuesdays.

But now I'm suffering from the perfect storm of grease, hot sauce, and salmonella. But it was so worth it. I'd do it again. Just not tonight.

Grown-ups should not eat SpaghettiOs

Someone is nuking spaghettiOs for lunch in the kitchen here at our office. I can't believe they are eating them. That sickly sweet smell of that nobody knows what it is but it could be tomato-like sauce is permeating the office. Shouldn't people past a certain age move on to actual food products for lunch?

Besides everyone knows spaghettiOs are best eaten right out of the can.

Christmas Cookies? Bah Humbug.

I love cookies. But every year everywhere I go, it's cookies, cookies, cookies. Aunt's house - cookies. Friend's house - cookies. Nice neighbor lady - cookies. Today at work - cookies. And generally the same 6 types of cookies (chocolate chip, hersheys kiss cookies, oatmeal raisin, fruit filled cookies, run balls, and sugar cookies in festive shapes). And although I never thought it was possible, people actually can mess up a chocolate chip cookie. Maybe I'm just burned out on cookies, maybe I'm just guilty about my diet, but if I eat another Christmas cookie I just might lose it. How about some nice Christmas bread or something for a change?

Sausage Making Book

I'm looking to buy a book on sausage making. Here is what I am looking for. . . There's almost nothing to flip through in the local book stores so I'm soliciting opinions here.

I want something basic that explains the rules and the hows and why science type stuff.
I want nitrate / nitrite free options.
I would like it to have pictures / recipes / Tips
A focus on things like salamis and italian / spanish sausages.

Does anybody have something to recommend?

Cucumbers + Tomatoes = Gazpacho

So I have a lot of cucumbers and tomatoes from my garden. I figured I would do the obvious when you have too many tomatoes and cucumbers and since it's 90 degrees outside I decided to make gazpacho. I started with Ina Garten's recipe on the Food Network and while it's perfectly edible and tastes good I feel it's missing something. What are your tips / secret ingredients for gazpacho?

I was thinking of adding either some hot peppers, olives, or maybe some anchovies but I wanted to see if anyone else had some outside the recipe box type ideas.

Zucchini, Zucchini, Zucchini

I have a TON of zucchini. I don't grow it. I just get it from relatives that do. Had I known I was going to get literally 15 more pounds of it, I wouldn't have bought some at the market two days before.

So I have a zucchini bread recipe ( I hear it freezes well), grilled some, I think I can stuff some. . . What else should I do? Does it make good soup (a la cream of zucchini or something. . .), I guess I can feature it in a caponata or something. . .

Indian Pickles

I was at an Indian Buffet last week and all in all it was a very standard buffet with the most common (i.e. familiar) choices. This one is different because it was the first I'd been to that had pickles on it. It wasn't a pickle like anything I'd had before. Even when eating it I wasn't not sure if I loved it or hated it. And unfortunately I couldn't identify anything in it beyond the chili peppers (and they might not have been chilies). It seemed like in addition to the peppers there was a little green ball with seeds in it, onions, something that may or may not have been an olive. It was sweet, sour, and spicy all at the same time and sort of yellow green.

I should have asked the waitress but they were pretty busy and I didn't get a chance. Anybody have any ideas about what this could be or what could be in it?

So I Bought This Smoker and...

I have big plans for smoking vast amounts of pork, a turkey, wings, and ribs of all kinds. I might even smoke some sausages and salmon. So I'm looking for tips, advice, and stories on all things smoking related. From cuts of meat, recipes for rubs and mops, wood choices, and whatever else could be helpful. Anybody out there feel like sharing?

After a good work out I will eat you all.

HUNGRY! I went to the gym this morning and like every time I head to the gym my appetite has kicked into overdrive. Nothing that approaches a reasonable meal seems to satisfy. Eat protein and complex carbohydrates? Doesn't work. Isn't... More