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monica

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  • Favorite foods: pomegranates, chicken lemongrass soup, chocolate, no fish, no fungus

Cookbook Giveaway: 'A Twist of the Wrist'

Frozen broccoli florets. Most times they just look better, and I can just plunk them in whatever I am cooking. They also make a great base for soups.

Possiblity of contamination of coumarin in cinnamon?

Seriously though, you may want to talk to your doctor about this. Coumarin is a blood thinner and it may have effects with other medications that you are taking.

While the internet is a valuable source for medical research, and helping someone learn how to talk to their doctor, you should ALWAYS talk to your doctor regarding medical advice.

Question of the Day: How did you get your first cooking-related burn?

Making tea for my sick mom when I was 5. I have a very small scar on the knuckle of my left ring finger.

On another note, I worked at a bakery for years. The only time that I ever burned myself was during the 2 weeks that my boss was on vacation. I don't know if it was because I was under more stress or what..

Why does organic milk last so long?

I thought that the UHT milk was the stuff in the same containers that you can buy soup broth in. I have seen them on normal shelves in the market. I am talking about the stuff in the 'normal' milk containers.

Do you like 'chunks' in your ice cream?

I agree with Sarah P. I like nuts and brownie bits and chocolate chips, but the texture of frozen fruit just turns me.

Question of the Day: What kitchen gadget needs to be invented?

Something that cleans a box grater without getting shredded.

Actually, I would just be happy if things that we already had came apart easily, had user replacable parts, and lasted a long time.

Question of the Day: What were you making last time you set off the smoke alarm?

Bacon, I like mine just this side of cremated.
My cat and smoke alarm go off at the same time. One doesn't like the other, so it sounds like: Beep, Beep, Beep. MEOOOOOOOW! Beep, Beep,Beep. Both keeping perfect time.

Question of the Day: The five-second rule—is it OK to eat food you've dropped?

I have a dog, no food makes it on the floor for more than 2 seconds.

What to put on which kind of bagel?

Salt bagel with honey nut cream cheese.
Jalapeno bagel with plain cream cheese.
Poppy bagel with plain cream cheese and capers.

Problem with non-stick pans and cakes.

I get the restaurant type pans at sur la table.

I think that your cakes are rising because the batter has nothing to hold onto, try buttering and flouring them even though they are nonstick.

Love the site, hate the color scheme?

The colors are nicely muted (i.e. nothing is screaming), but seriously in advertising class they tell you never to use orange!

Any suggestions for what to do with leftover wine corks?

I have done the cork board thing. You can also go to halloween as one of the Bruces with a pith helmet. You can tie them into things that you are felting to give a 3-D quality to the fabric (craftzine.com).
You can also enter the design contest that makes a chair from the champagne cork and wire.

Who's your most/least favorite food personality on Food Channel?

Ok, this is going to be weird: I like Alton, I can't stand RR.

I like Paula Deen more because she is entertaining: She gets bleeped! It's hilarious.
I like Nigella, but that is more because I always find something I want to make out of her cook books.
Michael Chiarello has the wrists of a magician, so that is entertaining.
Who I don't like:
I don't really like the concept of Dave Lieberman's show, mostly because the food that he is supposed to make is budget concious, it really isn't.
Sandra Lee is like nails on chalkboards.
Giada...I might like her better if her hair didn't always seem to be on the precipice of being in her food.

Question of the Day: What's your earliest food-related memory?

This is really geeky, and probably exlplains why I am a scientist.

My mom was trying really hard to convince me to eat some brocolli. I was young, probably four. I just wouldn't put it in my mouth.

She finally started telling me this story about what happens when you eat, how you chew up the food, and it goes down your esophagus, into your belly, and ending up as poop (because veggies were the best at that). And even though brocolli looks like trees, it was good for you.

Finally, she had to heat the broccoli up again because the story took so long. The fun part is that I loved it. I started asking for it all the time. Broccoli is my favorite veg, always has always will (and please, no cheese).

Question of the Day: Ever buy cookware, utensils, or gadgets from an infomercial?

I watched this biography of Ron Popeil once (I was sick...forgive me). He is rather an interesting guy.

But I am starting to think that Billy Mays (of orange glo fame) is the next Ron Popeil.

Rachael Ray - love, hate, ignore, pity, envy?

Spawn of the Devil.

Mostly, it bugs the hell out of me that her hair is in her face when she is cooking.

She seems to have certain gestures that she makes with certain word combos (not that I can stand watching her...she just is on right before AB).

Gather everything out of the shelves? What the hell is up with that? She is almost always (at least the times that I have seen her) on the verge of dropping something. Cleaning a smashed jar off the floor does not help the speediness of dinner.

I also hate her made up words: Stoup? Come on!

Question of the Day: Do you have a food-related pet name for your sweetheart?

Hmm. I call my cat 'Monkey Butt' too.

Hubby calls me sweet. Bugs the hell out of me because it is always reminding me of something sweet to eat and makes me hungry.

My dog and Alton Brown inspired my guinea pig's name: Mango. Because as AB put it: Ginger and Mango are best friends. And it's true too.

What's you favorite Non-Micro brew...

Normal Place: Hoegaarden
Dive: Blue Moon

Question of the Day: What's the worst meal someone's ever cooked for you?

My mom is a horrible cook.

She has made a pork roast that turned out green.

She made potato soup, once, and after 20 years I still remember how bad it was: I think that it was flake potatoes and enough water to make it a soup like consistency.

My brother and I refer to her 'chili' as hamburger soup, as it is just tomato soup, kidney beans and browned ground meat, no onions, no chili seasonings of any kind.

Question of the Day: Not for the squeamish--ever get food sickness?

Taco bell. Ended up in the hospital after 12 hours of 'both-ends' every 30 minutes (to the minute). Worst experience ever.

Do you know how to use chopsticks?

I do, my best friend growning up was chinese, and he taught me. I just bought my niece "starter' ones for kids.

Question of the Day: What is your favorite food-related magazine?

Cook's Illustrated, because I am a scientist, and really appreciate the approach. I also love the back covers.
There is one that I like from Australia, but I can't remember it's name.

Question of the Day: Other people say it's 'gross,' but you love it. What is it?

salt and vinegar potato chips with vanilla ice cream. The combo is sort of minty.

What do you order when you go to the cheap Chinese takeout?

chicken with garlic sauce, no green peppers or mushrooms, extra spicy
steamed dumplings
veg lo mein

Does Cooking Make You Gay?

This may not necessarily be the same thing, but people often assume that women that are good at math and science are gay. It is a gender role issue. I also like to cook, not because it is something I am supposed to do, but it is like science in my home lab. I am happily married.

I hated dolls as a child, but I could make a mean play-doh pierogi. I prefered designing the barbie house, rather than playing pretend with them.

There are somethings that we don't find out that we are good at until later in life. There is a span of time where we start to mature, and not care what everyone thinks anymore. We start to trust our own judgement. We figure out what makes us happy.

My husband can figure out how to grill, other than that, the kitchen is mine. Luckily, I like this. However, he realizes that it is a skill set that he should have learned in his younger days.

Maybe once people start to mature (and some take longer than others), things start falling in place. Maybe in this instance these two particular pieces of adam fell into places at similar times.

Why does organic milk last so long?

We don't go thru a lot of milk. Occasionally I have milk in my cereal, or when I need it for making something. Mostly, I just use it for coffee. I have noticed in the past 6 months that the sell by date for organic milk is months after the 'normal' milk. For instance, I bought milk today that doesn't expire until May 20th. At first I was skeptical, but the organic milk hasn't turned the way normal milk does, even after 2 weeks after the sell by date.

As the goofy scientist I am, I can only think that there is something that isn't added to the milk, or that there is some treatment that the organic milk is/isn't gettng.

Any thoughts?

What wouldn't you eat as a child?

I was just watching my niece and noticing that she begs for things that I would never eat as a child (I remember being really annoyed if I got ketchup on anything). I eat ketchup on the normal things now. So, I was wondering what other people wouldn't eat as a child, and if they ate that thing now.

do you eat at a 'clean' chain pizza place, or a dirty indie one?

Ok, there are like 5 indie pizza shops around our place, and 2 chain places (a pizza hut and a papa john's). I have tried each of these. I have picked up from each place, and I am kind of annoyed about the state of the kitchens in all of the indie places, and have started always getting pizza from a chain. Now, the chain pizza has become normal for me (in a "this is what I expect", not necessarily the "best" way). Should I just think that the chain would always be cleaner (because of corporate) and go with what tastes best, even though I am watching someone take my money and then go back to kneeding dough? Or do I avoid the whole situation and make my husband pick up the pizza from now on?

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