Former chef living in Las Vegas

  • Website
  • Location: Las Vegas
  • Favorite foods: Anything that doesn't involve jello, marshmallows, margarine or peanut butter. Or that cheese from Sardinia that has the live maggots in it.
  • Last bite on earth: Dry aged and perfectly grilled prime rib eye steak

Latest Comments

How does one avoid making bright orange tomato sauce?

The bright orange is from the air introduced when you blended it. If you insist on a smooth sauce, blend the tomatoes and onions just briefly before you cook the sauce (just pulse a few times), cooking will reduce the amount of air somewhat and give you a better color. Also, don't add the herbs until after you blend the tomatoes to avoid darkening your sauce.

'Top Chef Masters' Finale: And The Winner Is...

Moonen should have won, but I'm glad Susar didn't. I don't care how good his dishes looked, I'm weary of foul-mouthed, mean spirited chefs on these shows. His bad sportsmanship early in the series really put me off.

Worst U.S. cities for finding good pizza restaurants

Everybody has their own opinion about what "good" pizza is...having started with that disclaimer I'm going to say Las Vegas with it's thousands of eateries is one of the most disappointing pizza towns I've ever lived in (we've been here 8 years). I'm from the east coast and my idea of "good" pizza is a pie with a good freshly made crust (thick or thin), a sauce that has no corn syrup in it, and high quality toppings....and it shouldn't cost $30 for a large pie We have yet to find all of that in the same pie here in Vegas and trust me, we have eaten our way through dozens of pizza places on all sides of town.....I'm going to go out on a limb here and say the best pizza in Las Vegas is the pizza from the snack bar at our Costco. Sad.

Hush, hush. Do I have to smuggle fresh food?

There's no way you can do anything with durian other than smuggle a whole one on a plane and risk the embarassment of getting caught. They are banned in taxis, buses and hotel lobbies in Asia for a reason. Not sure where you live, but these days durian can be found in many Asian markets around the States (even in small towns with any kind of an Asian community) both fresh, frozen, dried and prepared in items such as ice cream,canned beverages and snacks.

What is a Good Technique for Preparing Steak Under the Broiler?

If your heart is set on using your broiler, the key is it must be pre-heated and HOT and you'll want to broil your meat as close to the element as possible. The goal is to cook it as quickly as possible to avoid that tough texture that can result from broiling slowly. You'll want to purchase a thicker piece of meat. Top round sometimes called London Broil is a nice, lean and relatively inexpensive cut and if marinated for an hour or so can be very good broiled. But I rarely use my broiler for steak, I find searing it on my stove top in a hot grill pan or even a non-stick pan produces the end result we prefer.

In my experience using a marinade or seasoning that very highly seasoned with a touch of something sweet works best for indoor steaks (the sugar will caramelize quickly under the broiler creating something close to a good char), just pat the meat dry before cooking , rub with some oil (any will do), re-season with a bit of salt & pepper and broil right away to get some browning as quickly as possible.

I also don't recommend you use that broiler pan rack thing that comes with your stove. Better to use a wire rack placed on a cookie sheet. Those broiler racks tend to produce a steak that's gray and tough on one side or the other.

If your apartment fills up with smoke you'll know you're doing it right.

Cooking Channel, Anyone?

Didn't care much for the shows that felt like they were hosted by Food Network Star contestants but am looking forward to the Two Fat Ladies, Julia Child and Galloping Gourmet shows. I'll keep an open mind for now, I so want this to be something better than the other food network. I hope they listen to viewer feedback.

Grocery Self-Checkout Lanes: Way or No Way?

Those self check-out lanes give me an anxiety attack if I have more than a few items. I obviously lack the advanced skills to handle the pressure of weighing my own produce.

Super Bowl Giveaway: The Bacon Explosion

There is something dishonest about putting bacon in a salad - it’s kind of like smoking while you jog.

The stench of Lean Cuisine - HELP!

What IS that smell anyhow? I know the smell your talking about...we had a former coworker that insisted on eating those meals 2-3 times a day, nuking them in the lunchroom and eating them in her cubicle. The entire office would reek from that unnatural cardboard/garlic/chemical smell all day long.......anyhow, try a cleaner with ammonia in it. Lemon scented ammonia is my cleaner of choice for smelly/greasy situations and it's cheap.

Grocery Store Brands Do Well in Taste Tests

On the west coast, Fresh & Easy (owned by U.K. food giant, Tesco) has a long list of store branded staples that are just super. We also love their juices, bakery, sauces and snack items...and their very reasonably priced yet excellent wine selection.

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: La Quercia

Just a loaf of really good bread, some cheese and a nice bottle of wine.

NY Strip Roast or Ribeye Roast: SE Beef Eaters, please weigh in!

Rib eye without a doubt...beefier, juicier and often more tender...and I also do a little aging in my refirgerator for a few days before cooking (here's how I do it )

Gordon Ramsay: Cookalong Live, Episode 1

I wonder if Ramsey's production crew received any damage reports from the flambees done under the microwaves I spotted that were mounted directly over ranges? I was horrified when I saw all those people running around their kitchens with frying pans fully engulfed in flames with no idea where to set the darn things down in fear of catching their cabinets on fire.