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Costco party fare?

The hummus tray with the three or four different flavors is totally edible.

Chicken salad placed in mini rolls or halved croissants would be easy. They normally have tubs of tortellini salad at my Costco as well- right next to the chicken salad. Never tried it tho.

Dec 11, 2014
gordeaux in Chains

Why would anyone go to Denny’s these days?

I stopped going to Denny's for political reasons a long time ago. I don't have many limits when it comes to that type of stuff, but Denny's and Wal-Mart aren't even options for me any more. I used to be a Denny's fan - not many places that serve discount pancakes are on my bad list.

Dec 06, 2014
gordeaux in Chains
1

Tito's Tacos Red Salsa Recipe

If Tito's is average, then Taco Bell is fine dining.

Nov 08, 2014
gordeaux in Home Cooking

Turkey in Mexican cuisine

If you find anything really interesting, please report back.

Nov 08, 2014
gordeaux in Home Cooking

Turkey in Mexican cuisine

Pavo En Mole.

Web that up for as many recipes you can shake a turkey breast at.

Nov 08, 2014
gordeaux in Home Cooking

Deep freezer essentials

Vaccuum sealer.

Now's the time of year I start smoking up meats for the winter. BBQ in December is always welcome.

I do a lot of big batches of pancakes and waffles, banana bread, and bbq. Soups too - especially after I get the T-day turkey carcasses.

Also, get ready to really be able to enjoy those grocery store sales you come across once in a while when you wished you had room for the items. One of my favorite stores had choice lamb chops priced as the lamb shoulder roasts they were sitting next to in their cooler. After doing a double and triple take on the pricing, I would up with 40 or so pounds of the best lamb chops I've ever had. You might also wanna look into buying a whole or partial animal - cow, pig, lamb, etc..

Nov 02, 2014
gordeaux in General Topics

'Upscale" Sauce for Seared Scallops

butter, cream, garlic, salt, pepper, parsley, and a splash of gin.

Oct 29, 2014
gordeaux in Home Cooking

Things You Eat Frozen (or Thawed and Uncooked)

Any kind of snack cake frozen- Twinkies, Ding Dongs, etc.

Oct 26, 2014
gordeaux in General Topics

French door refrigerators...

I should clarify that my wide, bottom drawer, I really have no complaints with. It's the two smaller drawers above it that are my complaint.There are days when I feel like taking a sledge hammer to the fridge to exact my revenge on those two drawers. The fridge looks nice, and it keeps things at 38 degrees just as it should, but the two drawers on the model I have are garbage.

Oct 19, 2014
gordeaux in Cookware

French door refrigerators...

Please consider:

Test the construction of the gliding components (drawers/shelves.)
If I could do it over, I wouldn't have bought my KA model for this reason. It's VERY obvious that's where they saved $ in production on this model. I noted it when comparing in-store, but a few ppl told me that when the drawers were filled, they would be smoother. Not so at ALL, and I should have listened to my gut. Still,even when filled and weighted, the drawers are flimsy, and have to be twisted and fiddled with to close properly 4 or 5 times out of ten. Another thing that happened is the lever to adjust "humidity" on one of the drawers broke within a month. Both are definitely "first-world problems," but I could have bought 6 other models that would not have these problems. (I think I would have gone with GE or the big ol' Samsung, OR found a different KA model.)

Other than that, unless you're paying for one of those fancy multi- zone, let-you-know-when-your-jam-jar-is-low, or milk-is-near-expiration, $7k+ fridges, my biggest concern was ice/water in door (took up too much fridge space for me, so that was a no.)

Don't overthink it. A fridge keeps food at 38 degrees. 38 degrees is 38 degrees no matter how many gadgets are involved.

Oct 19, 2014
gordeaux in Cookware

Costco Food Finds - 4th Quarter 2014

LOL-
I friggin' LOVE the White Linen, so I was ecstatic to see the ad showing both, hoping my store would have it again. They didn't. I bought the Victoria, hoping for the best, but I don't like it nearly as much as the WL. The Victoria is ok, but the WL totally "did it" for me. If I had only known back then. I bought the two pack of White Linen clearanced for 1.97. I opened it when I got home, tasted it cold, and decided I was going back the next day to buy at least 5 more two packs. It was all gone, however.

Oct 19, 2014
gordeaux in Chains

Chef Friend Visiting . . .

Zaragoza fits your bill.
Divey, but the food is soooo serious. It's not for vegetarians, either. Roasted goat, done sooo right.

La Chapparita on 25th and Whipple is another dive with a taquero, Caesar, who pays much attention to detail even tho the place might not have white linen.

Both of those places are absolute gems for fantastic food, even tho they have no ambience to speak of, imo.

I'm not sure on the state of Leesiana/Gulf coast taquerias, but if your chef friend likes dives with great food, those are two of my favorites.

You might wanna ask them if there's anything special they'd LIKE to try?

Oct 02, 2014
gordeaux in Chicago Area

Hello, I am looking for some recommendations for store bought marinades, sauces, and pre-mixed seasonings for chicken

I'm gonna have to give that one a try. I've had a few of their pastes and was not overly impressed, but they were definitely worth trying.

Sep 30, 2014
gordeaux in General Topics

Slowing the ripening of avocados

Yup.

Hello, I am looking for some recommendations for store bought marinades, sauces, and pre-mixed seasonings for chicken

Walkerswood Jerk Seasoning in the little jar. It's the paste. You won't regret it.

Braised Beef Tacos

Web up recipes for "barbacoa" for more ideas.

Sep 15, 2014
gordeaux in Home Cooking
1

The great noodle soups of the world roundup

Meant K's, not D's.

Sep 13, 2014
gordeaux in General Topics

The great noodle soups of the world roundup

Howdy, JungMann-
For the Yat Gaw Mein soup with roast duck, it's a total hole in the wall. I haven't been in 4 years or so, but I remember that soup so well. I used to get it often, but I moved far away, and I'm rarely in the area anymore:
Empire Restaurant
49 W. Division St.
Chicago, IL
312-943-6818
I used to get that soup or Lo Mein ONLY. The rest of the food was pedestrian at best. Total hole in the wall, no waitstaff.

If you are looking for some real deal Szechwan noodle soups or perhaps pho, I'd be happy to help out. Not sure if you have those types of spots where you're at. One place I am absolutely in love with right now is called Katy's Dumplings, or D's Dumplings. If you like spicy Szechwan foods, and hand pulled noodles, Katy's is the bomb. They have a few locations, just not in Chicago proper.

Sep 13, 2014
gordeaux in General Topics
1

China town recommendations

So, this has me thinking. In Chinatown, where do y'all go for Szechwan?
I see a decent amt of folks saying the Lao joints are not to their liking, but I mostly view those places as Szechwan food specialists with generally speaking, a lack of enthusiastically prepared Cantonese dishes. When I think Moon Palace, or Little Three Happiness, I don't consider those places as apple to apple comparisons for "Chinese Food" to Lao Sze Chuan or Lao Beijing.

What's up with Szechwan for you?

Sep 13, 2014
gordeaux in Chicago Area

O'Hare-Rosemont - help?

What time, and where are you staying? Will you have a car?
What kind of food are you lookin to get?

Sep 12, 2014
gordeaux in Chicago Area

The great noodle soups of the world roundup

When I saw the thread title, I immediately thought of a roast duck noodle soup I get in Chicago. It's a simple Yat Gaw Mein, but the addition of bone-in roast duck chopped into bite size parts adds so much flavor, and the skin stays crispy in the soup. Fatty duck and crunchy duck skin in hot broth with chewy noodles? HUGE fan. Add a nice slick of hot chili oil, and I'm not done til it's all gone.

Sep 12, 2014
gordeaux in General Topics

China town recommendations

If you're gonna be alone, here's a sneaky suggestion. In the north west corner of the mall, there is an odd little food court. I think it's called "Richland Food Court." It's a building you enter, and walk downstairs. There are food stalls. It's not huge or anything -last time I was there, there were maybe 6 food stalls set up. Nothing I've had at any of them has been mind-blowing, but I've only been a few times.

If I were to go for Dim Sum, I'd choose the newish Cai, but Dim Sum in Chicago is kind of lacking, imo. It very well might be the best option to try a decent amount of things for a solo diner, tho.

If I were seeking Szechwan as a solo diner, I'd settle into either:
1. Lao Sze Chuan for dry chili chicken, and a some dumplings or noodles (with spicy sauce)

OR
2. Lao Beijing for Dan Dan Noodles, and dry chili tofu.

I forget if either place offers smaller portions.

For straight Cantonese Style, which I don't go to Chinatown very often for, Moon Palace and Little Three Happiness is usually where I'd wind up. I'm much more fond of the Szechwan offerings at Lao Sze Chuan, and Lao Beijing than the Cantonese joints, tho.
Don't forget Joy Yee for a bubble tea with tapioca! (Get a melon flavor!)

Sep 10, 2014
gordeaux in Chicago Area

China town recommendations

My current favorite for a mix of Cantonese and Szechwan is Lao Beijing in the Chinatown Mall. I find that most places specialize (mostly) in one or the other, but Lao Beijing, imo, is a fantastic blend of both, so the spicy food lovers and not so spicy food lovers can share a table and everyone's happy eating everything. If I'm with a group, and some ppl in the group want spicy foods, but some don't like the heat, Lao Beijing is my "go to."

What kind of Asian food are you interested in? Nsxtasy is right on, as usual, about the other ethnic neighborhoods that you might wannna investigate.

Sep 08, 2014
gordeaux in Chicago Area

Looking for something super spicy near Brookfield, IL

I'm a big fan of both of those dishes. Dry chili chicken is always on my table, and I press for the starter slaw if we don't get it right off the bat when seated. If I were to point someone to something really spicy on their menu, it would be one of their ma-la hot pots. That glorious sludge at the bottom of the pot can be heavenly spicy. Still, not like "food challenge" spicy, in my book, but it'll put a bead of sweat on your brow.

In reading yuppicide's description of their Thai joint, I might suggest they go to one of our Thai joints and try some non "pad Thai" dishes. In Chicago, Pad Thai is normally a dry-ish noodle dish with a light sweet/sour dressing primarily based on fish sauce. It's not one that I would associate with "serious heat" in a Thai spot for the most part. I'd suggest skipping Pad Thai altogether, and going for more "salad-y" type of dishes and ask for them "Thai Spicy" for that in your face, mack truck, unforgiving heat. One place very close to Brookfield almost made me tap out last year, around this time (fresh pepper harvesting time.) The place is called Yum Thai, and it's in Forest Park. Yum Thai has been around forever and a day, and it has the "secret menu." Once you ask for the secret menu, they know you mean business. Anyway, when I asked them for their "squid salad, Thai spicy," and the server repeated, but said "squid salad, extra spicy," I then corrected her by saying, "No, I'd like it THAI spicy," I got the grin. The grin that says, "ok, I trust you know what you are talking about." It was almost unbearably hot, but I like the rush from those types of things, and it had FLAVOR, also. Normally, in all of the Thai joints around, when you ask for a dish "Thai spicy," they get it. If you get "the grin," you pretty much know they get it.

Indian joints will also amp up the heat levels if you make sure you emphasize that you would like them to bring the heat. There are no "phaal" dishes that I know of here, tho. Out East, I think phaal is a little more common on menus. I can't think of any Indian joints close to Brookfield that have made my tastebuds sizzle, but I've never asked for them to make anything extra spicy for me, since I'm the only one in my family who can really "take" the heat. Their normal heat levels seem to be just fine for everyone else.

Sep 07, 2014
gordeaux in Chicago Area

Looking for something super spicy near Brookfield, IL

Would you mind narrowing this down a little? Are you looking for like, food challenge spicy, or really good food that'll put a little sizzle on you? In the Chi, there's not too many "food challenge" spicy places, but there are plenty of joints that will amp it up for you if you request it.

Lao Sze Chuan is really good food, and some of it can get spicy, but it's more Szechwan peppercorn spicy, than blazing chile spicy. I dig it a lot, but it's not gonna sizzle your tastebuds as much as it will make them go numb (as Szechwan peppercorns are supposed to do.)
The food is fantastic, but it's not gonna be food challenge spicy.

I'd be looking at Indian or Thai joints if you want some tongue sizzlin' heat.

A sneaky spot for almost food challenge worthy stuff that is damn close to Brookfield -

Zacatacos on Harlem Ave in Berwyn, Illinois. Steak tacos with their red salsa. It's Salsa de Chile Arbol, and it is normally sizzlin hot. Very earthy flavor, and it's full of flavor, not just hot for hot's sake. Their char grilled skirt steak and red salsa might be something for you to look into.

Sep 06, 2014
gordeaux in Chicago Area

Hatch Green Chile roasting in Chicago area?

Kinda funny how the "need" for green chile dissapates so incredibly quickly outside of the few states in the SW where it's so prevalent. Luckily, my better half's company is hq'd in Denver, so I can get a suitcase full of roasted, peeled, and frozen every so often. Mail order is also an option for you for roasted and frozen. Hope you find 'em!

Sep 01, 2014
gordeaux in Chicago Area

Looking for fresh red Jalapenos in Chicago

Not sure where you've checked so far, but any decent sized Mexican market should be a good bet. Jimenez, or Cermak Produce would be my first thought to check for stores with multiple locations.

Aug 09, 2014
gordeaux in Chicago Area

Attention Chefs: Can we all agree that bacon is over?

Bacon can surely be "out" for those who ever thought it was "in." Just like sriracha, cilantro, avocado... whatever. I'll still use them the same as I always have.

P.S. If you're over it, who ordered those dishes.

Jul 25, 2014
gordeaux in General Topics
1

How to get better results with a microwave?

Use the power levels correctly.

Know which foods should never be heated in the nuke, or, know which foods will be crappy if heated in the nuke, and weigh out the options. Sometimes I'll use it for leftover pizza, but I know it's gonna be crappy, and sometimes that's ok.

Jul 25, 2014
gordeaux in Home Cooking
1

Famous foods from your region you find tasty and delicious.

I'll concede to the Lou's deep dish, because I have a fondness for a Lou's once in a long while when they are done correctly. But, a Lou's extra thin still trumps a Lou's deep 90% of the time, imo. Leaving out the other styles (NY, and Neo,) what is your preference when getting a pie without out-of-towners? Tavern, DD, or Stuft? I, and everyone I know, will say Tavern. Do I know everyone in the city? No. Not at all. Just my 2 cents for the thread. Most of the folks I know do say that DD and stuft are for tourists.

Jul 12, 2014
gordeaux in General Topics