Profile

tastefixation

  • Website
  • Location: Seattle, WA
  • Last bite on earth: Assuming I'd also be able to take a last sip on earth, I'd have a bite of prosciutto-fig pizza (on a garlic-olive oil base with goat cheese and caramelized onions) and chase it with a sip of good prosecco.

The Food Lab: How To Make a Foie Gras Torchon (Secret Technique Inside!)

I can't seem to find a website, but Pleasant Valley Farms in Puyallup, WA does foie gras as well. I believe it's a pretty new operation, at least w/the foie. We tasted some in class (I go to Seattle Culinary Academy) a couple of weeks ago, and it was crazy delicious. Of course, it's the only foie I've eaten to date, so I have no comparison. ;)

Why Do Some Folks In The Drinks Industry Like Cheap Beer?

I work at an Italian restaurant, and we have a few good beers on tap, and then Peroni in the bottles. It's the cheap beer of our restaurant, and these are definitely the ones getting passed down the line on a hot night.

The Pizza Lab: The Baking Steel Delivers

THIS IS SO EXCITING! :D

Introducing: Jeni Britton Bauer Ice Cream Week

You guys should really check out Parfait Ice Cream in Seattle. While the flavors aren't as adventurous, the ones they choose to make are really solid and well executed. I believe they're doing online ordering and pint-shipping now, too...

How To Tell If A Coffee Will Taste Good

When the bubbles are big enough for me to be able to distinguish one from another...I know the foam will not be the velvety heaven I'm always hoping for.

Latte Art: How to Draw a Rosetta on Your Coffee

Sweet! I've been *shown* how to do this, but not with such detailed instruction and explanation of the steps! Thank you! Imma try this out today when I get to work. :)

SE Staff Picks: Our Favorite Easter Candy

Don't forget the chocolate covered & candy coated malt ball eggs!

Reese's eggs are definitely my favorite, though. And I really do think the ratio of peanut butter : chocolate is better than the regular cup. But which end does one start from? The skinny top or the fat bottom?

When Is It OK to Order Domino's?

I consider myself very lucky to live in a good pizza delivery zone. I spent a good chunk of my early adulthood eating Pizza Hut & Domino's (I worked at PH and my best friend's boyfriend worked at D's), and I hope I'm done with it. Pagliacci is my preferred Seattle pizza chain, and the closest location is a 3 min drive away. :)

Food For Thought: Xiao Long Bao and Authenticity in Food

:)

It makes me happy that someone has written about this so in-depth.

International Face Off: Nutella

Well, that explains why I couldn't handle Nutella as much here as I did abroad...I thought it was just that my teeth had become more sensitive to sugar... :(

Yellow Birthday Cake

When does one add the milk...?

Video: Strong Bad Pizza Joint

Who's always giving Strong Bad a hand? ...The Cheat, The Cheat... Who's always messin' up Homestar's plans? ...The Cheat, The Cheat... Who's gonna start a rock 'n' roll band? ...The Cheat, The Cheat... Who's "Making out with Marzipan"? ...The Cheat, The Cheat...

That's the Spirit: Art in the Age Root, Snap, and Rhuby Liqueurs

The Rhuby sounds like all my hopes and dreams...bottled. Trying that ASAP!

We Tried Every Trader Joe's "Trader Moon" Wine

The Honey Moon is my go-to wine, when I want something under 10 bucks. It turned me on to the viognier grape, and I'm a fan for life, I think.

Founders Canadian Breakfast Stout Is Worth the Hype

That sounds like one of the Best Things (let alone Beers) EVER.

So what did you have for Christmas breakfast?

Eggs, bacon, and the Pioneer Woman's cinnamon rolls. We usually have the ones from a can, so this was a delicious step up this year! ;)

What food/cooking items did you get for Christmas?

A salad spinner, a potato ricer, and a shiny sexy food scale!

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: Zingerman's Praise the Lard Gift Box

Well...besides bacon...I'd say guanciale! The first time I had it, it was on a pizza. It was a magical substance that had the texture of poultry meat, but the glorious taste of bacon.

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: La Quercia's Cured Meat Experience

In slices so thin, they melt on your tongue.

From Behind the Bar: On Thanksgiving

And thank YOU, good sir!

Have Holiday Help Hotlines Outlived Their Usefulness?

I'm with marchpane. At first, that's what I thought this post was going to be, lol. Of course...the multi-part food lab answers series was prett damn thorough...and I'd guess that Kenji has his own stuff to be doing the day before Thanksgiving.

The Food Lab's Apple Pie, Part 2: Perfect Apple Pie Filling

I'm with @hcfoo22...won't some flavor leach out into the water?

Cakespy: Mellowcreme Pumpkin Cake

Yes! The pumpkins totally trump the corn at my house!

Find a Use or Let it Sit?

I try to find a use...*usually*. I see it as a challenge and might even make something up to experiment.

Sometimes, though, I get distracted by stuff and forget about it anyway. Especially if it's something that gets shoved in the fridge one day, and the next day someone goes grocery shopping and shoves more stuff in front of it...

Pizza Delivery and the Economics of Reputation

The average pizza eater probably wouldn't notice or care enough...but there would definitely be some people unfamiliar with WFO pizzas who would be taken aback (and/or grossed out) by the inevitable sogginess, which would most likely result in a lost customer. In the end, it's up to the individual pizzeria. If they think their crust can stand up to a 10-20 min delivery, and they're not worried about a few lost customers in exchange for a few new ones, they should go for it. I, personally, would not (under normal circumstances, at least) order a WFO pizza for delivery, and would only order it as takeout if I were just bringing it to the park across the street.

"14-inch slicing knife" (?!) required for culinary school

Ok, so I'm going down my list of materials for culinary school, and one of the knives mentioned is a 14-inch slicing knife. This is in addition to an 8-10 inch chef's knife, a 3 inch paring knife, a 5-6 inch boning knife, and a 10-12 inch sharpening knife. I know what all of those other knives are and what they do...but what's the purpose of a 14-inch "slicing" knife? Slicing really big things? Also, it doesn't mention whether or not it should have a serrated edge (I could understand having a long bread knife, for example)...I've found multiple "slicing knives" in internet searches, with various types of blades, and the prices range pretty far, so I'm wondering if this is even a standard knife that's used in professional kitchens at all.

So, do any of you culinary school students/grads happen to know what they mean by this? And if y'all have good recommendations on where to buy said knives, I'd love to hear them!

Criteria for comments being filtered/held?

I just commented on the juice cleanse conclusions article, and got a message saying my comment was being held for approval. This has happened to me a couple of times before, but usually when I include a link (or several links), which makes sense for spam filtering. But this comment didn't have any links...though I guess it might be a bit long...?

Are there certain criteria (which could be avoided by SE users who want to participate in discussions immediately) for what will set off the comment filter?

Interesting ideas to use up my surplus of garden greens?

My lover and I planted a garden this year, and didn't do very good planning on the lettuce bits. We planted everything at once, which means that about 2 weeks ago, our raised beds were overflowing with ripe arugula, mixed greens, spinach, and romaine. Not to mention the herbs (salad burnet, sorrel, sage, cilantro, stevia...). Back when we were planting, I was happily imagining a spring/summer of coming home from work to a delicious, fresh salad night after night.

However, after 2 weeks of doing just that, and even with my mad homemade dressing skillz, we're a little burnt out. Is there anything else y'all could suggest to make with mixed greens besides regular ol' salad? I'd welcome any unconventional salad ideas as well as ways to incorporate greens into other meals.

Most of the arugula has been harvested, and I'm making some saag paneer tonight to hopefully use up a good portion of our abundance of spinach. I'm not too worried about the herbs, as I tend to use them every time I cook, and there aren't 5 plants of each herb fighting for space.

Sooo...interesting applications for gourmet mixed greens? I've heard you can grill romaine hearts...

It's Seattle Restaurant Week!

Sunday through Thursday of this week and next week. 3 course dinners for $28 and 3 course lunches for $15 at participating restaurants*. My lover and I went to Seastar last night and had a pretty pleasant dining experience, and we've got a few more restaurants in the lineup (Urbane, Carmelita, and Lark for sure). Anybody else taking advantage of this awesome deal/steal? What was your experience?

[*no, I'm not being paid to advertise for Seattle Restaurant Week--I'm just really, really excited about it!]

Where are some good places to sample bitters in Seattle?

I've been reading a lot about bitters the last coupl'a days, but have yet to really experience them and develop my own thoughts on them. I'd like to go talk to a knowledgeable bartender and try some different varieties and drinks. Since I don't really go out to drink much, do any of you know a good place in Seattle to begin this investigation? Extra points if you can point me to a bar that makes its own!

Dinner Tonight: Cheddar Scallion Polenta Croquettes

When I think of polenta, I think soft and creamy cornmeal served warm from the pot, a delicious northern Italian staple. But polenta also comes in another form, where it's allowed to cool and firm up to be cut into shapes and re-cooked. Polenta in its soft form has always been my go-to—mostly because a grilled piece of cornmeal never much enticed me—until I came across this recipe in Deborah Madison's Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone, where it's breaded and shallow-fried. More

BraveTart: Make Your Own Milanos

Santa and Milanos have equally substantiated merits. Santa supposedly rewards children for their behavior and Milanos ostensibly taste good. Both claims remain scientifically impossible to prove, but even so, people continue to believe in them because both point to something beautiful. More

Cakespy: Pumpkin Pie in a Chocolate Chip Cookie Crust

Pumpkin pie and chocolate chip cookies are pretty much baked good soulmates. They're both considered all-American desserts, both are the result of bakers making do with ingredients available at the time, and both seem to inspire a primal instinct in bakers who are constantly seeking out the best recipe. More

Chocolate Cookie Crumb Crust

This homemade version of a chocolate cookie crumb crust blows the kind made with packaged cookies away! It's a perfect crust for cheesecakes, crumb crust pies, and tarts. It's a little extra work, but I promise, the pure chocolaty flavor and sweet/salty balance is worth it! More

The Food Lab: Homemade Mayo In 2 Minutes Or Less (Video)

If you've only ever known mayonnaise in the form of the quivering jellyish stuff that comes in the jars with the blue lid, you're doing yourself a disservice. Like switching from briefs to boxers or walking to Mordor, trying homemade mayonnaise is the kind of thing that will forever change your life (or at the very least, your sandwiches). Today, we do it in 2 minutes or less, with a 100% success rate. More

Cook the Book: Catalan-Style Turkey

Just like chicken thighs, turkey legs are an economical cut that's often overlooked. By braising instead of roasting, these legs emerge juicy and nearly falling off the bone with sweetness and warmth from the sherry, raisins and prunes. Served up with something starchy like a Saffron Risotto with Mushrooms (recipe to come later this week) and you've got a lovely fall family meal. More

The Burger Lab: An Even Better Way To Make Any Cheese Melt Like American (This Time in Slices!)

I wanted full-flavored American cheese that not only behaves like American cheese once it's melted on a burger, but I wanted cheese that behaves just like American in every other way. American cheese that you can double stack inside a grilled cheese sandwich that oozes out into gooey puddles when you bite into it. American cheese that you can melt on the stovetop with a can or Ro*Tel for the ultimate upscale-trashy cheese dip. American cheese that you can pick up cold from the fridge, stack with a pile of bologna, and roll up into the best-ever midnight snack (don't other people do this?). More

Pie of the Week: Butternut Squash

This is a great autumn pie with a mellow sweet squash flavor, and creamy, dense texture. While other squash pie recipes often tend to lean heavily on the spices, this recipe is more subtle, taking the less-is-more approach with a nice hit of ginger and just a hint of cinnamon and freshly grated nutmeg. It gets its buttery, creamy flavor from the addition of butter and sweetened condensed milk. More

Dinner Tonight: Grilled Portobello and Peach Sandwich

On its own terms, a grilled portobello is a wonderful sandwich mainstay, especially when paired with an incredibly ripe grilled peach. In addition to the mushroom—which is marinated in garlicky, herb-flecked olive oil—a mashed avocado spread adds the crucial creamy element, and peppery arugula provides a fresh counterpoint. More

Olive Oil Powder

Tapioca maltodextrin is a slightly sweet modified starch that will thicken and stabilize liquids high in fat. Since it can absorb more than its weight in liquid, it can transform fat into a powdery substance that melts on the tongue. Use olive oil powder in dishes for an extremely rich feel in the mouth, such as on lobster. You can replace the olive oil in this recipe with any flavored oil; nut oils like hazelnut and pistachio come to mind. More

Knife Skills: How to Sharpen a Knife

Personally, I find nothing more frustrating in the kitchen than a dull knife. Not only does it make prep work a chore and your finished product less attractive, it's also downright dangerous. A dull blade requires more pressure to cut into a food, and can easily slip off of a tough onion skin and into your finger. Ouch. Here's a slideshow on how to sharpen a knife with a sharpening stone, with recommendations on what stones to buy. More

Homemade 'Reese's Cups'

Complete chocolate tempering instructions are beyond the scope of this recipe, however, you can find a great tempering tutorial from Liddabit chocolatier Liz Gutman here.. Also, take heart: you don't have to actually temper the chocolate. If you skip tempering, you'll have to store the peanut butter cups in the refrigerator, but who ever turned their nose up at a cool Reese's Cup? More

Cocktail 101: How to Make Oleo-Saccharum

Oleo-saccharum is an ingredient in cocktails and punches that was relatively commonly used in 19th-century bartending as a way to provide an elegantly citrusy flavor and aroma to alcoholic beverages. It's also an excellent addition to lemonade, iced tea, and even vinaigrettes. More

Dinner Tonight: Salmon in a Bengali Mustard Sauce

Normally, when I get my hands on a nice fillet of salmon I tend to treat it like a steak, keeping it whole and cooking it over moderately high heat. So I was completely off balance when I began to cook this recipe from Madhur Jaffrey's At Home with Madhur Jaffrey. The fillet is cut into pieces, covered in a spicy rub, and then cooked gently in a mustard-loaded sauce. I mean, there's ground mustard and mustard seeds in this one! But I didn't worry too much; Jaffrey has never failed me before. More