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malisa0607's Profile

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Got my first KitchenAid Artisan Mixer. Recommendations?

I recommend storing it where you want to use it. I have mine on the counter and usually will use it there but yesterday I decided to move it to the island because I had all my ingredients on the island. It was heavy! I have the Pro 600 and it weighs about 8-9 pounds more than the artisan.

I also recommend testing its limits. The first day I got mine, I made bread and cinnamon buns. The Pro 600 is supposed to handle 14 cups of AP flour. Both of my recipes called for about 5 cups of bread flour (still well under the limit) and the mixer kept overheating. I called customer service the next day and after asking a few questions, the rep decided that mine was defective and sent out a new one right away. I got my new mixer in about 4 days. I put my old mixer in the box and sent it back to them. They have excellent customer service. (Unlike Nikon. I'm still pissed at Nikon. I returned my Nikon and bought a Canon.)

I have the shredder/slicer attachment but it is still in the box. I use my Cuisinart for shredding. My friend loves his ice cream attachment.

I love making chiffon and sponge cakes using the mixer. I get several requests for Chinese birthday cake. It is a light sponge cake with fresh strawberries and fresh whipped cream. It is almost like a genoise cake but better.

Dec 06, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

recs for a new food processor?

I used my Cuisinart to make pie crust today. It comes out perfect every time. I have an 11 cup. I found a great deal and paid $130 for it.

I read a review that rated Kitchenaid slightly better than Cuisinart but I decided to stick with Cuisinart.

Dec 05, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

need to replace nonstick stir fry pan and don't know what to buy

I'm not sure if you are looking for a non-stick or a non non-stick. I saw this at Costco the other day, inspected it and was impressed by the feel. I like the quality of NordicWare items and their pricing is not bad. I didn't buy it because I have too many pots and pans. My coworkers had to intervene. "Hello, my name is Malisa and I am addicted to pot...s"

I want to recommend this 4 quart All-Clad saute/simmer pan. I have it and love it almost as much as my LC dutch ovens. It is great for stir-fries. I find that I reach for this pan more than my wok because I hate the carbon steel material of the wok. I rave about this pan to everyone. I even recommend it about every other day on many cooking/food forums. (I think WIlliams-Sonoma should give me a commission.)

Oct 26, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

All Clad 13" French skillet vs. saute pan

i just went into my kitchen and pulled out my pans to measure. The WS exclusive may not work for you. The surface is slightly larger than my 10" frying pan (only by a smidge) and it flares up. I like it because it is my all purpose pan but if you want it to brown chicken, you may want something with more cooking surface than your current 10". The french skillet may be the way to go but make sure you can find a lid that fits.

Oct 26, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

All Clad 13" French skillet vs. saute pan

Are they both 6 quarts? I can't seem to find how many quarts the french skillet holds. Maybe someone who owns the pan can answer this question. I know Williams-Sonoma and Sur la Table both carry the french skillets. Williams-Sonoma has a two french skillet set (9" and 11") for $99.

If you decide to go with the french skillet, keep in mind that the french skillets do not come with lids. All-clad lids are pricey. I wanted a lid for my 12" frying pan. I ended up buying the 4 quart saute/simmer pan from Williams-Sonoma because it came it a lid that fits my 12" frying pan. I love the pan and it is an awesome deal for both the pan and the lid. (I think I was the chowhounder that recommended the pan to the chowhounder below.)

I find the 4 quart saute/simmer suitable for most of my cooking (the 3 quart is too small). I also have a 6 quart deep saute that I only use occasionally. (I got the pan and lid for less than $70 when Macy's was clearing out their LTD line.)

Oct 26, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

Outdoor stir fry?

my mom has something called an outside kitchen equipped with a few of these burners:

they are connected to large propane tanks. the heat output is awesome for chinese stir-fries.

i don't have one because i live i a little townhouse without a backyard. i have one of those annoying smooth glass top stoves.

Oct 12, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

Replacing Old Cookware--Recommendations Needed!

i was at costco the other day and i saw the kirkland set for $199. i'm not sure if this is the same set that cook's illustrated rated as their recommended best value set. i think costco stopped carrying this set for a while and just brought it back. (i always check out their kitchen section to see what's new.)

i picked up one of their frying pans to test the quality and i was very impressed with the construction. they were a lot nicer than cuisinart chefs classic and almost as nice as all clad. it seems like a very good set for the price.

for the 4-5 qt saute pan, i highly recommend the 4 quart all clad saute/simmer pan from williams-sonoma. "this exceptionally versatile piece combines the attributes of a sauté pan and a saucier." it gets a lot of use in my kitchen.

Oct 08, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

help me buy a dutch oven

i cook for two but my bf has a really large appetite. most of the time the 5.5 quart round le creuset works fine. i also have 6.75 quart oval but i don't like the shape for stovetop cooking. sometimes i wish i bought a larger round because i like to make larger amounts. i usually will give a container of food to my friends. they are new parents so they really appreciate the food. i just sent them a quart of chili and will send them a container of vietnamese curry when i make it tonight.

i also have a smooth glass top stove and the le creuset works fine. i like the le creuset over some other brands because their pots are cast a little differently resulting in a thinner and lighter pot. they are still heavy compared to my stainless steel pots but are considerably lighter than my bare cast iron dutch oven.

i got all my le creuset pots at a discount. look for sales and check the le creuset outlets. they carry both first and second quality items.

Oct 08, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

pizza pan?

we just did a test between our kitchenaid pizza stone and the mario batali cast iron pan. the batali pan is 100 times better. the bf used to own a pizza restaurant and he was blown away by the results we were able to achieve in an electric home oven.

i've never tried the all-clad pan so i can't compare.

i got the batali pan on clearance at macy's. it was $2.79 and i got an extra 30% off by using my macy's card.

Oct 06, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

Thai Red Curry help please.

I don't use a recipe for curry. For me it just all comes together. I don't write down amounts. I taste, adjust, taste, adjust...

Below is my list of ingredients.

I think MSG and dried galanga root is important. I know MSG is not a popular ingredient but I think many restaurants still use it even when they claim their food is made without it.

- canola oil
- garlic; crushed
- 1 whole chicken; remove the meat and cut into bite-size pieces and use the bones to make a stock (sometimes I just cook the bones with the curry and remove them when everything is cooked)
- Mae Ploy brand red curry paste
- madras curry powder (This adds more curry flavor without adding more heat from the curry paste. I don't like it too spicy.)
- onions; diced (Yellow is fine. Sometimes I'll use red. We don't need anything fancy. Save the Bermuda and Vidalias for a different recipe.)
- MSG; to taste
- salt; to taste
- pepper; to taste
- stock (from reserved chicken bones)
- palm sugar
- Mae Ploy brand coconut milk
- galanga root
- kaffir lime leaves
- lemongrass
- fish sauce; to taste
- sliced green onions
- cilantro, chopped
- thai basl

My veggies always vary but I always like lots of potatoes and bamboo. Choose your favorite combination. I find that restaurant curries do not include enough of my favorite vegetables.
- yukon gold potatoes; peeled and cubed
- white sweet potatoes; peeled and cubed
- diced red bell pepper
- sliced carrots
- Thai aubergines; cut in half or quartered
- butternut squash; cubed
- sugar snap peas
- green beans

Heat oil in a large dutch oven and then brown the chicken with garlic. When the chicken in browned, remove and set aside.

Toast the curry paste and curry powder until fragrant. Add the cream top of the coconut milk and cook for a few minutes.

Return the chicken to the pot. Add the onions. Season with salt, pepper and MSG. Add the stock, the rest of the coconut milk, palm sugar, galanga root, lemon grass, and lime leaves and bring to a boil, turn heat to medium and simmer about five minutes.

Add your vegetables, (starting with the veggies that take the longest to cook; usually the potatoes or root vegetable). Add fish sauce, taste and adjust your seasoning. When chicken and potatoes are cooked, turn off the heat and add green onions, cilantro and thai basil. Remove galanga, lemon grass and lime leaves before serving.

Serve with warm jasmine rice.

Oct 03, 2009
malisa0607 in Home Cooking

breadmachine recs

The zojirushi home bakery supreme is awesome but really expensive.

i saw the cuisinart at costco for $69.

Sep 29, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

brand for muffin tins

they recommend wilton ultra-bake

i actually really like my oneida

Sep 28, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

Birthday Cake Recipe ideas for severely allergic toddler, please?

here are a few. the pictures look pretty good.

Sep 27, 2009
malisa0607 in Home Cooking

Do you really need a 12 inch skillet if you have a 12 inch saute?

i think you will be fine with the 10" skillet and the 12" saute. Judging by the size of your current pans, it looks like you cook smaller portions so a 10" skillet should work for most of your cooking.

When you occasionally need a larger skillet, the saute pan should work. The only downside with using a saute pan for browning, searing or frying is that the higher sides hinders evaporation so some food items will steam instead of brown. I use my 12" skillet when I shallow fry flatter foods such as potato latkes. The larger size makes it easier to cook several at a time and for latkes, I really need the quicker evaporation. I don't shallow fry on a regular basis so most of the time the 12" skillet stays in the cabinet. I find my most used all-clad is the 12" saute/simmer pan. I use it for stir-fries and simple pasta dishes.

Since you are still new to cooking, I think you should try cooking with what you have and assess your needs based on your daily cooking. When you are cooking, do you find wishing for a different size or shape pot? Slowly add to your collection based on your cooking style and your needs.

I highly recommend adding a 5+ quart dutch oven before adding a 12" skillet. My round enamel dutch oven is another frequently used pot (more than my oval one). I use it for cooking soups, stews, braises, pilafs/couscous/grains and beans. My only complaint is that the light color enamel interior is terrible when it comes to searing and browning.

Sep 26, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

I think it is time i get real pot and pans...

i second the 4 qt saute/simmer pan from all-clad. it is a williams-sonoma exclusive and is a pretty good value for all-clad. i used it last week to make a quick angel hair dish with shrimp, fresh tomatoes, spinach and wine. i also use it for quick stir-fries when i am too lazy to look for the wok.

Sep 21, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

Best teas for making iced tea

I really like Revolution brand teas. Their Tropical Green Tea, White Pear Tea, Dragon Eye Oolong and Golden Flowers Tea are really good.

The next time you're at the Asian store, you should pick up some Thai tea leaves. It is my favorite tea for iced tea.

Sep 20, 2009
malisa0607 in General Topics

"Pod" Coffee Makers

I have the Keurig. It is over two years old and still works like new. We got it at Costco. Costco has the best deal on Keurigs. The package came with 90 k-cups and a reusable filter attachment.

We bought the machine because I am the only coffee drinker in the house. I wanted a convenient way to make a cup of coffee on the weekends. (I drink coffee at work during the week.) I used a regular drip coffee maker for a while but I found that I was wasting too much coffee. The Vietnamese brewer and the french press was a little too time consuming and messy.

Keurig does have quite a few brands and varieties of pods (k-cups) but I find many of them too weak. You will have to experiment to find your favorite. My favorite is Tully's Madison blend. I recently started using the reusable filter with my own coffee but it is not as convenient as the prepackaged pods. They also have tea and hot cocoa k-cups but I never buy them. I use the Keurig to heat the water and use my own tea bags and cocoa mix.

We have four plumbed Keurig machines at work but also have three 16 cup brewers. We mainly use the regular brewers during the day but have the Keurigs for those who want coffee at the end of the day.

I like my Keurig. The coffee is not like coffee from a regular coffee brewer but for the convenience, the coffee is pretty darn good.

Sep 20, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

"Pod" Coffee Makers

My favorite k-cups are Tully's Madison blend. Most stores only carry Tully's French and Kona so I have to order them online.

Lately I've been brewing Lion brand in the reusable filter.

Sep 20, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

Skillets, sautes, and Julia Child recipes

Here is an enamel cast iron skillet with a lid.

I personally do not think the specific pan is necessary. I would use either a saute pan with a lid or my favorite all-clad saute/simmer pan with lid. (the lid also doubles as the lid for my 12" all-clad frying pan.

Sep 15, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

Bread Books

i also recommend bread baker's apprentice. i'm in love with the buttermilk white bread.

i went to johnson & wales and have the exact uniform that the girl on the cover is wearing. sometimes i hold the book up and tell people that it is me on the cover. of course it is not me but it makes people do a double take.

Sep 15, 2009
malisa0607 in General Topics

Anyone know a brand name that makes GOOD baking sheets?

I really like my Calphalon and my Chicago Metallic sheet pans. I'm a huge fan of parchment and silpats so I usually line my pans when I use them.

Sep 09, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

How do you freeze your stock?

I think I understand what you want. I've never tried making 1 or 2 cup disks with stock but I do freeze demi glace and leftover wine in ice cube trays. Once they are frozen, I remove them and store in a freezer bag (or tupperware container). I think it can work if you adapt this technique to make larger "ice cubes." I think the key is finding the container for freezing. I'm not sure if you can find an ice cube tray that makes larger cubes.

Some possible ideas:

1. Use one of those silicone baking molds (i think the cupcake or the sheet of mini loaves will work) to freeze your stock. Once frozen, pop them out and then store in freezer bags.

2. Freeze stock in round 1 or 2 cup containers and once they are frozen, submerge them in hot water to loosen the frozen stock and then transfer to freezer bags for storage. Alternatively you can probably line the inside of a container with plastic wrap to make it easier to remove the frozen disk.

The Ziploc Twist 'n Loc containers are really inexpensive. I buy them on sale and I pay about $1 each. I must have about 20 to 30 of them in both the 2 cup and quart sizes. They are reusable. I avoid using Ziploc bags whenever possible. They are really difficult to reuse and I hate the idea of throwing them out.

Aug 31, 2009
malisa0607 in General Topics

How do you freeze your stock?

I freeze mine in Ziploc Twist 'n Loc containers. I used both the 2 cup and the quart containers. These are the same containers we use for our soup club. Sometimes I will reuse the soup containers from Chinese restaurants.

Aug 31, 2009
malisa0607 in General Topics

Best Thai Curry Paste?

I also use Mae Ploy but I always add fresh lemon grass, lime leaves and galanga root to enhance the flavors.

Post your method and I can give suggestions. I make awesome red curry =)

Aug 28, 2009
malisa0607 in General Topics

Can you identify these mystery pods?

They're called Koa Haole in Hawaiian. I was surprised to see them all over the island because I always thought they were Asian. My parents have a tree in their backyard. I hate the way they taste. They are bitter and have a funky aftertaste.

Aug 16, 2009
malisa0607 in General Topics

Registry Wish List

I'm not married but have pretty decent kitchen equipment. I decided that I did not want to wait for the wedding registry and decided to buy the stuff by myself. I have:

- 6 quart Kitchenaid Professional Mixer in Empire Red (some people prefer the Cuisinart but I love my Kitchenaid)
- 2 Le Creuset french ovens (5.5 qt round and 6.75 qt oval)
- hodgepodge of different All-Clad pots and pans (some people have something against All-Clad but I used them in culinary school and really like them)
- Cuisinart food processor (many people like the Kitchenaid food processor but I like my Cuisinart)
- porcelain ware (I have Corningware, pyrex and several Le Creuset casseroles and various dishes)
- Meat thermometer (I use the same Taylor one I got from culinary school)
- knives (German or Japanese? Choice is yours. I have a set of f.dicks from culinary school and they work well for me)
- flatware (I love my Henkels flatware but you should choose the pattern that is right for you)
- pizza stone (I have a Kitchenaid stone and a enamel cast iron pizza pan)
- bella cucina rocket (macy's version of the magic bullet. i love the darn thing and I only paid $25 for it. i use it more than my blender.)
- bread machine (i like to make homemade bread but some days i prefer to throw everything into the machine and have fresh baked buttermilk bread. it is not as good as making it by hand but it is convenient.)
- china/stoneware (your choice whether you want something more formal or something that can be used for both casual and formal. I chose modern because I don't have many formal dinners.)

That is all I can think of right now. Time for bed.
- Coffee maker (if you're a coffee drinker. I am the only coffee drinker so I have a Keurig. I would love to upgrade to the Breville but cannot justify the cost.)
- Cast Iron skillet
- cute spice containers (I like my spices organized in the little magnetic tins
- Silpats (I buy the Sur la Table brand. It is cheaper and works just as well.)

Aug 13, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

cant decide between Le Creuset and a roasting pan

I would go with the Le Creuset. Do you do a lot of roasting? My roasting pan comes out once maybe twice a year but I use my Le Creuset ovens all the time.

Aug 04, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware

Do I need a 4-qt saute covered saute pan?

If storage is a real problem then I don't think you need an additional saute pan. Between the 5 quart dutch oven and the 12 inch Calphalon, most of your cooking needs should be covered. I would not recommend the 3 quart saute. I have one and I rarely ever use it.

I have an obsession with cookware so I have (or want) a pan of every shape and size just in case I may need it for something someday. I LOVE LOVE my 6 quart All-Clad saute pan but at 6 quarts, it is pretty large for most people. (I only cook for two.) For most recipes, the 12 inch All-Clad frying is adequate. If I need to cook something with more liquid, I also have a 5 1/2 quart and a 6 3/4 quart Le Creuset french oven.

Jul 27, 2009
malisa0607 in Cookware