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Jim Washburn's Profile

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purple hull peas

Just a few days ago I snagged some fresh lady cream peas from a farm stand in Luling, Texas. Cooked them with water, salt, and salt pork. Sublime!

Aug 19, 2010
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

Bialetti Moka pots - oxidation

Argumentum ad populum.

Jul 03, 2010
Jim Washburn in Cookware

SC Hash

I "shore" hope I live long enough to see Lottashore4's hash recipe.

Jun 13, 2010
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

SC Hash

I do. Thanks.

May 23, 2010
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

Borel peppermill

I think I found the same thing yesterday at a local thrift shop--wood, about 11 inches tall, "BOREL FRANCE" stamped on the bracket under the grinding mechanism. Works great. Got mine for a buck. Woo hoo! I love a bargain.

Apr 28, 2010
Jim Washburn in Cookware

San Antonio: Guajillo's and Panchito's

I don't get to San Antonio as often as I would like, but I've been there twice in the last two weeks and tried a new-to-me Mexican restaurant each time. Guajillo's, except for the dynamite table salsa, was a disappointment. I got the tacos al pastor, and it was almost horrible--dried out, tasteless meat that I had to douse with salsa in order to gag it down. My waiter was a surly jerk, too. I will not go back.

Yesterday a friend and I each had our first experiences at Panchito's on McCullough, and we each went for the chile relleno stuffed with picadillo. The poblanos were big, and the filling was well seasoned. The batter could have been a little more floury and less eggy, as it totally wilted under the sauce, but as a whole it was a truly excellent chile relleno. My friend shares this opinion. Our server was cordial and took good care of us. I'll certainly go back to Panchito's and try some other dishes.

Jim

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Guajillo's The Shortcut to Mexico
1001 NW Loop 410, San Antonio, TX 78213

Mar 17, 2010
Jim Washburn in Texas

Ham bone, ham bone, have you heard?

I've walked into specialty ham shops that sell both whole hams and ham sandwiches, etc., and asked for bones. Sometimes they've given me a couple gratis, and sometimes they've charged me a little bit for them.

Nov 27, 2009
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

Refilling a disposable pepper or salt mill

I have several of the IKEA grinders and love them, but they are considerably heavier and bulkier than the McCormicks, which are so small and light one can carry them almost everywhere, and I do.

Jim

Jun 07, 2009
Jim Washburn in Cookware

tramontina enameled cast iron?

I've got some Le Creuset pieces I've had for about thirty years, and it is very fine stuff, deserving of its reputation. About six months ago I got my first piece of Tramontina, the 3-quart braiser, $29.86 at Wal-Mart. It isn't as pretty or as beautifully crafted as the Le Creuset, and it remains to be seen whether it will be a durable, but it cooks just as well. So far I'm delighted with it.

Jim

Apr 22, 2009
Jim Washburn in Cookware

Can't See Search Results Past First Page

More info:
This problem occurs if the search argument contains a string enclosed in double quotation marks. If there are no quoted strings I can page through the list of hits normally.

Jim

Apr 01, 2009
Jim Washburn in Site Talk

Can't See Search Results Past First Page

I'm having the same problem. Please fix.

Jim

Mar 31, 2009
Jim Washburn in Site Talk

electric kettle recommendations

My Bodum Mini does work great. I got lucky and found a used one at a thrift shop for a buck and have been using it daily for about six months. It boils water fast and is small, light, and portable.

Jim

Mar 30, 2009
Jim Washburn in Cookware

which grill pan to buy?

For one thing, you can't get those spiffy crosshatched grill marks with a frying pan, and if your food throws off much grease as it gets hot, it'll start to fry in its own fat in the frying pan, whereas the fat falls away if you're using a grill pan. Sometimes one is preferable over the other, e.g., I'll always choose a frying pan for bacon and a grill pan for a steak.

Jim

Mar 24, 2009
Jim Washburn in Cookware

St Patrick's Day Dinner Recap

I used a pressure cooker on a three-pound brisket I cured myself in a seasoned wet brine for two weeks. Then I pulled out the meat and pressure cooked onions, carrots, new potatoes, and cabbage in the broth. All was excellent in taste and texture.

Jim

Mar 19, 2009
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

Refilling a disposable pepper or salt mill

I have two like that. The tops do come off. It takes a fair amount of force.

Jim

Mar 11, 2009
Jim Washburn in Cookware

Is All-Clad nonstick a waste of money?

About 10 years ago I bought an All-Clad 12-inch frying pan. It was a second, and I got a good discount on it--got it for about $70. I used it only for bacon and eggs (which I make nearly every morning) and washed and treated it very gently. After five years the non-stickiness was shot. So then I bought a 12-inch commercial-grade Tramontina from Sam's Club for about $20. It has performed every bit as well as the All-Clad and has outlasted the All-Clad. I'll never buy upscale nonstick again. Waste of money.

Jim

Mar 10, 2009
Jim Washburn in Cookware

Ides of March party

Serve all hors d'oeuvres in pairs. Then you can say the revelers "et tu" of everything.

Jim

Mar 08, 2009
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

SC Hash

I lived in South Carolina near Charleston from 1953 to 1964, and I have very fond memories of the hash, but I was just a young kid and had not yet developed my curiosity about how to cook the foods I enjoyed. Much more recently I've made a couple of attempts to duplicate that taste, which I still remember pretty vividly. I've taken a pig head, heart, and liver cooked on a wood-fired pit, finely chopped the meats, and put them in a pot with lots of onions, some garlic, salt, black pepper, vinegar, and water, and cooked it all to mush. It wasn't quite right, but it was in the ballpark. On further reflection I've speculated that what was missing was pig blood, and next time I have an opportunity to get a head, heart, liver and some blood I'll try it again. I haven't set foot back in South Carolina since 1966, and I rather doubt that there are many places making hash the same way it was done when I was a kid. I hope this is of some help.

Jim

Mar 03, 2009
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

Indian cookbook recommendations

I just got this book from hamiltonbook.com for $9.95.

Jim

Mar 03, 2009
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

Mauviel 1830/Professional/Copper

Just my two cents, but if I were going to have just one really fine copper pan (and I do) it would be a fait tout. I've had a MC2 saucier for about ten years that is a splendid pan and has been a real workhorse for me, and I sometimes use it at pretty high temperatures without worry. My tin-lined fait tout is for lower temperature sauce making and is a great tool for that purpose.

Jim

Mar 01, 2009
Jim Washburn in Cookware

Tamales: How to make the best masa dough?

I totally agree. If you can't get absolutely fresh-ground masa para tamales from a tortilla factory you must do it yourself as hankstramm described above. You'll need a hand-cranked molino a mano (or something better), and these can be had for about $25, give or take. The slaked lime (cal) should be easy to find, but the proper dried corn (maĆ­z) might not be.

Jim

Feb 27, 2009
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

Wolf Cooktop For Wok - OR - Can I do better?

Have you considered doing your wok cooking outdoors? I use a turkey-fryer type burner fueled by a 20-lb. propane bottle and with a wok ring fastened to the burner grate with automotive hose clamps. Under $100 for burner, bottle, hose, regulator, ring, and clamps. Another advantage is not having to clean up the oil that gets spattered out of a properly heated wok.

Jim

Feb 26, 2009
Jim Washburn in Cookware

Favorite cheese blend for homemade Mac & Cheese?

Please name the brand of sriracha you use for this. Is it really better than a mix of Rooster and some extra vinegar? Thanks. I am a hot-sauce nut and always on the lookout for something good that I've not tried before.

Jim

Feb 25, 2009
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

which grill pan to buy?

I have not cooked fish on the grill pans. Cast iron is heavy, yes. Only you can decide whether it's too heavy for you.

Jim

Feb 25, 2009
Jim Washburn in Cookware

which grill pan to buy?

The Lodge is an excellent performer and much cheaper than the other options. I have the 2-burner reversible grill/griddle and two of the frying pans with grill ridges in the bottoms. Good stuff.

Jim

Feb 24, 2009
Jim Washburn in Cookware

Soaking Dried Beans

Yes, but unsoaked beans take only about 30 minutes.

Jim

Feb 20, 2009
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

A book/guide to Asian or South American produce?

Wendy Hutton's "A Cook's Guide to Asian Vegetables" is excellent.

Jim

Feb 19, 2009
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

Home Coffee Roaster?

For several years now I have been roasting with a hot-air popcorn popper (the old West Bend one called "The Poppery") and am completely happy with the results.

Jim

Feb 17, 2009
Jim Washburn in Cookware

Best Chili Recipe

Ha! I won't waste my time looking. I SCOFF at 99.99+ per cent of all so-called recipes for chili, so it's highly likely I would SCOFF at all those recipes on that web site, too. Any recipe that calls for onions is a recipe for not-chili.

Jim

Feb 15, 2009
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking

Best Chili Recipe

There are no onions in chili. Lots of garlic, sure.

Red meat (diced, not ground), lots of rehydrated chile pulp (mix of anchos, guajillos, pasillas, cascabels, arbols, etc.), water, garlic, cumin, Mexican oregano, salt. That's it. No mas.

Jim

Feb 15, 2009
Jim Washburn in Home Cooking