Weekend Cook and Tell: Lovin' Liver

Missed this thread b/c computer has been on life support. Mr. Meatloaf and I both love it. With pasta, just sauteed, and in a curry, which we discovered one Christmas Eve in Singapore. Alas, computer repair zapped my favorites list with a new chicken liver curry we both loved. Will begin the search again....

What to do with a boneless leg of lamb?

One of my favorite things in the whole world is Julia Child's marinade on a boneless leg. It's from The Way to Cook and looks something like this:

I use all oregano and basically toss everything in a food processor and whizz it together. Divine.

Colloidal Silver used as Skin Cream

But can it be grilled? Saute, maybe, but surely not grilled.

Do You Pick the Leaves Off when using Cilantro/Parsley?

Someone - ? NYT food section this week - said the stems of cilantro are more flavorful than the leaves in the wintertime, and she uses them, too.

Curry ingredients

Sorry; hit the wrong button and sent it too soon. The rest of that comment goes:

Don't want to sound snarky, but even if you don't like something, it's not like if you don't care for the taste it will stay with you for weeks or make you ill. Just eat something like a piece of bread, chew it well, and just don't eat it again. Took me years to figure this out.

Curry ingredients

Why don't you stir a little into something like mayonnaise and taste it?

The Serious Eats Doughnut Style Guide

And what differentiates a paczki from a regular jelly doughnut? We don't have a large Polish community here in St. Louis, but the supermarkets have begun selling them before Lent, and I can't differentiate them from the same old, except that our usual JD's normally just have raspberry filling and the paczkis have various fillings (sold in boxes of a half-dozen only; bummer). And yes, there are some places that do offer a variety of fillings in their usual JDs, but not many.

The Serious Eats Doughnut Style Guide

Indeed, a good round-up. However, one fine point needs to be covered: Why, please, does the old-fashioned split like that and the other cake doughnuts don't? And in your experience, isn't the dough different from other cake doughnuts, richer and more tender?

No More Whipped Cream and Sundaes at Shake Shack

And why is this, pray tell?

Grace/prayer at a dinner party

And then there was the time at a (grace-free) dinner party when the woman next to me brightly asked me, "Do you have a church home?" I was quite taken aback. "What did you say?" I asked her, with a tone that didn't sound like the noise level in the room interfered with my hearing. She repeated herself equally brightly. I finally said that my husband was culturally Jewish, although not religious, and did not follow a formal religion. "I just thought I'd ask," she said, "because I've begun going to XYZ Church, and they are just the nicest people, and I---"

At this point, the hostess (equally unchurched) interrupted to ask me to come in the kitchen and help her with something.

Yes, being thankful is always a good thing. But beyond that....

BraveTart: Make Your Own Butterfingers

Violet Reese? Good heavens, she was that kid in my first grade class with the constantly running nose from Halloween to April Fool's Day.

Brunch or Lunch on the UES (80s/90s b/t 2nd and Lex)?

A little farther south is Jones Wood Foundry, with a great brunch and a lovely interior.

The Nasty Bits: Lamb Ribs

How fortunate you are to be able to even find them. Once upon a time we could occasionally find them - I'm talking several decades ago, when here (in our part of the Midwest) lamb in general was hard to locate. Tasty, inexpensive - I'd read about them in a cookbook, and picked them up when I saw them. Go for it. I'm loving the nasty bits.

Reality Check: Jumbaco from Jack in the Box

The JITB taco is a secret addiction of more foodies than many of us like to admit, and many more realize.

Outgrown Foodnetwork ????

Totally lost its oomph for me a long time ago; now it's too dependent on personalities rather than cooking. It's come a long way from what Sue Huffman gave us, and a long way from what I like.

Outgrown Foodnetwork ????

Totally lost its oomph for me a long time ago; now it's too dependent on personalities rather than cooking. It's come a long way from what Sue Huffman gave us, and a long way from what I like.

Advice on great places to eat in Europe

L'as is fun. My fave is L'Ambassade du Auvergne; they have a website that has an English version. A wonderful meal with, among other things, a fabulous warm lentil salad, aligot potatoes, which are a mashed potato with cheese that's unbelievable, and chocolate mousse, brought out in a huge dish from which one may take as much as you think you can hold - which after these hearty things, may not be very much.

It's west of the Marais on the way to the Pompidou.

A Question of Honesty

Makes no diff if it's not to their taste, or, as someone said, "not good". I think "not good" is totally in the beholder. I've known folks who liked a wine that was clearly corked. Not fancy, maybe, or not unusual, or not a part of the world that is in fashion or of interest. But that's like saying food's not good. Unless it's literally spoiled, it's just a matter of personal preference.

I'm generally an ABC kid, Anything But Chardonnay. But I've had a few white burgundies that were fabulous. And those, uh, are made with, er, chardonnay grapes.

New York's First Steak 'n Shake Opens Tomorrow

Once upon a time, their fries were exemplayr, hot and fresh and just the right spot between crisp and crunchy. They've lost ground in the past years, but originally were better than the McD's. But nyah, nyah, nyah, nyah, you guys won't get chili mac in NYC.....

New York's First Steak 'n Shake Opens Tomorrow

I hope your grill guys have mastered the ratatatat of the Big Smash; it's the background noise of anticipation. And you know, of course, that the Shake Shack burgers are based on Danny's memories of SnS?

Got a good sugar-free cheesecake recipe for diabetics?

I have used Splenda in any cheesecake recipe I've made, since a good friend has IDDM and the results have been excellent. The only recipe I can get to quickly enough is something I blogged about. This is a pina colada version, made with pineapple in its own juice, and of course you can put it in whatever crust you like. And you know how to sub Splenda for sugar.

Hangover Helper: The Slinger at Diner Grill, Chicago IL

Slingers are an old St. Louis standard. There's a guy here in town who blogs about them (among some other things); NAYY, but you can find it here if you're interested:

A little more work to find after a night of drinking than driving through White Castle, but I can see on a cold winter night how it could appeal more.

Bergamot Sources

Bergamot is etrog, or citron, I just read. Does that help any?

Abendkleider Ideal Für ÜbernachtungTime Termine

Cabbage Rolls - Filling & Sauce Helps, Pretty Please

Agree w/ the squooshed canned tomatoes, sugar and vinegar; my dear late MIL's recipe from her Ukranian-Jewish mother who brought 3 little girls to this country in 1902, calls for that. Hannah did sub lemon juice if that's what she had on hand.

Browning Meat

Looking through yesterday's NYTimes food section and found the beef adobo recipe. Short ribs, browned on top of the stove before putting them in the oven w/ sauce. 3 lbs. short ribs, medium heat on the skillet. "Brown well on all sides, 4 to 6 minutes."

And that got me thinking. It always takes me longer to brown things than recipes call for. Standard gas stove, use highest BTU burner, no matter how much I have the heat cranked up, never as fast as the recipe calls for. Short ribs here are often in short rectangles or squares, so they, like beef or pork for a stew, have 6 sides. So browning on all sides takes a while, certainly more than 1 minute per side.

My gripe isn't with this particular recipe, which I probably will make and enjoy. My question is am I the outlier here? I've been cooking for umpty-ump years, so I'm way not a rookie, and it's just always taken longer to get that nice brown surface and the resultant debris in the pan.

Foil on Baked Potatoes

Opinions, please? I really find that foil makes a potato taste steamed, and it eliminates one of what is the best parts of a baker to me, the crispy-chewy skin. I know, I know; they hold up better in a restaurant and don't get dried out, and I suppose people must like them, or at least tolerate them. But especially when I'm paying $4 or so for it at a steak house - or would if I ordered it - it seems silly to get it when it's not what I really want. (Me, I bake 'em on the oven rack for either a long time or at a high temp.)

Frozen rice

About 3 weeks ago, I made a batch of jambalaya from a new recipe. It was killer good, but biiiiig. Dinner for friends one night, leftovers the next night, and still I had about 4 cups of it left. Put it in a freezer bag, pressed out air, and froze it.

This a.m.t, needing a fast supper before we went out tonight, I took it out of the freezer to thaw, and when it had mostly thawed, put it in the top of a double boiler, my preferred method of reheating things like paella and risotto. Noticed when I put it in that the rice was really grainy and falling apart. Flavor is still good, but the texture is shot. Googling freezing rice yields seemingly nothing but ooohs and ahhhs over how easy it is and how well it works.

Please discuss. No extra credit will be given for unattributed footnotes and mathematical equations.

What Is It With These Meat Thermometers?

Seems like there are lots of stories this year about thermometers giving temps that indicate the turkeys were done when they really weren't. I've had that happen, too. And I know I was putting it in the right place. Anyone have any input here?

Christmas(ish) Dinner?

For those who observe Christmas, whaddya cooking for Christmas dinner? Christmas Eve or Day? (Breakfast/brunch acceptable alternative, of course.) Maybe Boxing Day? Surely we've got some Brits here.

The Crock Pot Broke

The liner of my Crock Pot came rolling out the car door this afternoon. (Oh, don't ask.....) So much for that. It was a $25 Rival, one of those oval red ones, so a 4 quart one. I liked it okay, although I always muttered about it simmering pretty vigorously even on low. So I'm in the market for a new one, since it probably would be not much more than a replacement liner IF I could find one.

I'm really not up for a $89 one that will do everything but scratch my nose. Any suggestions on what to buy? Or what not to buy?

Brunch on CP South

I may well be hallucinating...but it seems to me as though within the last 6 months I read a (glowing) review or discussion of brunch at Marea - but it could have been somewhere else nearby. There is no brunch menu on their website. Any ideas of where I could be thinking of?

Cookbooks That Don't Work For You

The pecan-pie-topping had something from chiff that got me started thinking about cookbooks that don't work - for you, at least. She mentioned Bittman and the Silver Palate; I've had good luck with Bittman and the first two SP books, but the last one was a no-go.

The biggest no-hitter for me (that I can think of now) was a Russian Cb called Please To the Table. It read really well, and I wanted those recipes to work. But nothing I tried was anything more than merely edible. I had high hopes; those Eastern European cuisines often appeal to me.

So instead of your greatest hits, what were your greatest misses?

Bacon Of The Month Clubs?

Thinking about Mr. Meatloaf's Valentine's Day and was considering a BOTM membership for him. So I Googled it and was just overwhelmed by my options. Does anyone have any experience with any of them, either good or bad?

(And just how extreme is YOUR bacon addiction?)

Brioche For Burgers?

Adam's great piece on burger definitions got me thinking. I really don't like brioche buns for hamburgers. Brioche is too sweet and usually too fragile for the large burgers it usually is used with. I like brioche a lot, just not there. We have a brewpub in town that uses English muffins for their burgers, which I can tolerate, but spare me the brioche.

Whaddya think?

Site for food sections of newspapers

Several years ago, I had favorited a site that included a list of major newspapers with links to their food sections and the day of the week they appeared. I've lost the link. Does anyone know of a similar spot?

Tres leches cake

I've had this cake at a number of little Mom-n-Pop restaurants and enjoyed all the versions, all slightly different. Recently had one that used a cake that was more like pound cake than a yellow sponge cake, and that was interesting, too. I'd be interested in hearing stories of how your family makes it and whether you think there's a "standard" version - which I suspect there isn't.

Baking stone sub?

Yeah, I had one. Never used it. Gave it away. And sure enough, it's come back to bite me in the tush, because I want one/em. But I really go ouch when I see the prices. Am I wrong in thinking you can used unglazed tile for that? Has anyone played around with this?

What convinced me I oughta try it? Shirley Corriher's Bakewise.

Who's used 'em? Where can you get the tile? My Lowe's and Home Depot both looked at me like I was nuts when I asked for unglazed tile.

What Time Is Dinner?

Or supper, if that's what you prefer to call the evening meal. A thread in another forum that reported a restaurant having a 2-hour wait for a table at 5 p.m. (in this economy!) started me thinking. What time do you prefer to eat? Is it the same when you eat at home and when you dine out? What's the local schedule? Is everyone out of the restaurant by 9 p.m. or are things just getting rolling?

I admit I thrill to the sight of a roaring dining room at 11:15 at night, a sure sign, to me, that I'm in civilized territory. But where we live, in the urban Midwest, it's the 7 o'clock slots that fill up first. At home, we generally eat around 7, now that we're not feeding starving adolescents. I grew up in a world where supper was at 5 or 5:30. (And it wasn't dinner, but that's another question, isn't it?) Is most of Florida dominated by the Early Bird Special, or do the rest of you eat later? Spill it, tell all.

KitchenAid scraper blades

Oh, rats. I accidentally recycled the January issue of Cooks Illustrated. I'd meant to make a note of their recommendation for which of the two scraper-beater thingies they prefer. Could someone take a fast look and tell me which? (And while we're on the subject, who's used them and how do you like it?)

"uncommon" ingredients in dressing/stuffing

I've always been fascinated by the millions of variations in dressing (or stuffing, if that's your preferred term). A friend of mine, who's the same way, reports that her family's dressing includes milk as part of the liquid. She's never heard of anyone else doing that, but it turns out that another friend's family dressing uses milk, too. (Same part of the state, interestingly.) I'd also never heard of hard-cooked eggs in dressing until I was having a nce conversation with a lady in line waiting for a cashier early one Black Friday morning in Plano, TX. I believe she thought I was a little wacko, when I questioned her further about the egg.....

Other odd ingredients? Thoughts on how they get in there?

Tucson Breakfasts

Suggestions for a good breakfast or two - not brunch - in Tucson? We'll be staying on the east side of town. Diners? Mexican breakfasts?

660 Curries

Has anyone read/bought/cooked from this new book? I'm debating it. I'm always a little put off by books that start out with a list of condiments or whatever that you should make so you can cook the rest of the recipes, so my immediate reaction to the book, when I got it from the library, was a little negative. But as I got farther in, it began to make me hungry, always a good sign.

And whaddya think of his chatty style?

More On Knives: Classes?

Has anyone taken a knife class? Both a locally owned kitchen shop and our Viking Cooking School are offering them, and I'm curious. I'm a pretty experienced cook, and doing things like boning legs of lamb and chicken breasts for years, but my chopping skills are pretty clumsy compared to what they could be. So I'm thinking about it. Opinions? Worth it? Experiences?

July Birthdays!

For those of us with July birthdays and those of us who cook for July birthdays: What's your signature birthday food? Cake, main dish, whole meal, your choice.

Certainly related to growing up in a very small town in Missouri, mine is blackberry cobbler, the way the women in my family have always made it, with both a top and bottom pastry crust. Other things are swell, but that's the real deal for me.


Speaking of recipes being tested....

Am I the only one being driven crazy by problems with cookbook and magazine recipes that don't work? I had another one of those episodes the other day. You look at the recipe and think (if you've been around a while) something like, "Now that's a funny time to add the liquid [or whatever]", and then try to decide if it's an editorial problem or if that author really does it that way. For a long time, I thought, "Well, they've been doing this longer than I have," and followed instructions with my fingers crossed. Now I'm more apt to try to decide whether if I do it their way, will it do major damage? But wow, is that ever aggravatng!

Looking For A Particular South Carolina Restaurant

About 6 years ago, we were visiting in Mount Pleasant, SC, just north of Charleston. Our host took us to breakfast at an off-the-beaten-path joint that had marvellous grits and ham cut off the bone right before our eyes at the counter. I keep thinking there were 18-wheelers in a lot nearby, but that may be wrong. Anyone know where I'm talking about?

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