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Marcona Almonds - Inedible?

Glad I found this thread. Have been eating almonds my whole life (rarely rancid ones, but I know what rancidity tastes like), and had my first bitter almond last night. This didn't taste like rancidity but something entirely different. It was so bad it turned me off to the whole container...marcona almonds from Costco. I have had them before with the high oil content from other sources but this is my first "Kirkland" branded container from Costco, and the first time I've had them "dry" without sitting in some kind of oil.

As a side note, I am able to smell cyanide. I work in the medical field and years ago once attended an autopsy where the person had died of ingesting cyanide. I was the only one in the room who could smell it, and to me cyanide smelled revolting. Now that I have finally tasted a bitter almond, I think there was a definite similarity but it's hard to compare a taste to an old memory of a smell.

Either way I understand why people would be reluctant to finish their almonds. Even though it was only one almond, I'm thinking I will throw my container away (already half empty...the rest of the almonds were fine, though not as tasty as other marcona brands I've had) and not buy these marconas from Costco again. It was truly awful.

Dec 18, 2013
cariqunyil in General Topics

Why is egg refrigeration mainly a US thing?

I'm an American in the US, and I've had an interest in this issue for a long time. I've used eggs as old as 4-5 months from the date of purchase (in a vacation home that I visit infrequently), and the eggs were fine. I cracked them into a cup individually to make sure there were no off odors or color before scrambling them. They looked and tasted just fine!

Eggs that old are best used as ingredients in another dish or as scrambled eggs...I doubt they would have held up to poaching or frying with yolk intact. But I will say that I would never leave them out of the refrigerator that long and use them, whether the cuticle is present or not.

Otherwise, I think American eggs should be fine out of the fridge for at least a week. I've left them out that long with no problems.

Nov 24, 2013
cariqunyil in Food Media & News

Chick-fil-A Is Conservative? So Are a Lot of Other Restaurants

They should be able to discriminate against whomever they want. However, it's shameful that if it was racial, gender, ethnic or religious discrimination government thinks sanctions are justified...as long as you are not gay.

I do think a PR campaign against homophobic companies is also justified. You are a bigot and fund bigoted political campaigns? People have every right to protest you and boycott you. I personally will never eat at Chick-fil-A and their sugar-brined chicken ever again. Better off without them anyway.

Jul 27, 2012
cariqunyil in Features

Foods that unreasonably gross you out...

I've only had one malted milkshake in my life...let's just say that I will never have another one. Even the thought gives me the heaves.

Feb 25, 2012
cariqunyil in General Topics

Foods that unreasonably gross you out...

Malted milk balls. Some things I like less than others, but only these truly make me want to puke. I like malt in beer just fine, or chocolate covered anything for that matter...but malted milk balls have this horrid, rotten putrid taste that I just can't get over. Usually I can taste them for days afterward.

Even ground up and put in a cake, milkshake, etc. I can't handle them. I have hated them from the first time I tried them since I was a kid, and I have tried hard to like them.

What kills me is that people consider these things to be a tasty DESSERT or snack??? I think if they were the only things left on the planet to eat, I would rather starve to death.

I've only met one other person who feels the same way about them that I do. Must be a unique taste bud receptor? I will pretty much eat anything else.

Feb 25, 2012
cariqunyil in General Topics

Cavolo nero/Tuscan kale/dinosaur kale, or indeed any kale

Trust me, there is no terroir in Alaska this time of year. 95% of the produce in our stores during winter is shipped in,from the lower 48, the rest grown in greenhouses.

Jan 08, 2012
cariqunyil in France

Cavolo nero/Tuscan kale/dinosaur kale, or indeed any kale

Wow, I live in Anchorage Alaska and dino kale is the only kind of kale I actually like. I have it frequently throughout the year.

I'm surprised it's harder to find in Paris than it is in Anchorage, which is famous for being a small marketplace "at the edge of the world".

It is a wonderful, versatile vegetable..I wish you the best of luck in locating a reliable source.

Jan 08, 2012
cariqunyil in France

wine pairing for alaskan king crab with drawn butter

Ok, I live in Alaska, LOVE King Crab and am faced with this decision often. If you prefer a drier wine, I think a 2009 Domaine Drouhin Chardonnay (Oregon) works well, but in general a drier Riesling or sweeter Chardonnay of moderate acidity accentuates the sweetness of the crab and moderates the saltiness and richness of the butter, IMO.

I haven't yet found a red that doesn't overpower the delicate sweetness of the crab but I am sure it exists!

However, my favorite pairing is "out of the box" for most wine lovers: A slightly dry PLUM wine (especially Choya) is the best pairing, even though most people who pair wine with food would never be interested in fruit wine, but I encourage you to try it since you have so much crab to experiment with. I also enjoy King crab legs with sake.

Best of luck :-) Remember that King Crab has a different flavor profile from other crab so this list would not necessarily apply to snow crab, Dungeness or other crab.

Jan 02, 2012
cariqunyil in Wine

Best of Anchorage, Alaska

I have been a food snob since college and have lived all over the country, traveled a bit of the world and wound up in Anchorage for the past 7 years...my list would differ from the above. I have to say that while there are some decent restaurants here, most of them would not be very good to foodies from larger cities with a lot more diversity. The list above is a step above most chain restaurants but I am a little surprised by some of the choices that made the list. Outback should have never made the list as it is considered a mediocre chain restaurant by most Americans. Other's are not really restaurants: Tap Root Cafe for instance has good beers and meads and a fun atmosphere (but the food is definitely an afterthought there). Bombay Deluxe would not be considered good anywhere outside Alaska, but is the only Indian restaurant in town (there are two Himilayan restaurants however that have better-but not amazing- Indian food). However, for a brief stay here my recommendations are as follows:

Suite 100 in South Anchorage (definitely local food and inventive dishes, usually very busy and kind of spendy)

-Momma O's and Captain Chuck's I agree are good if you want fried fish (though the Halibut sandwich at the White Spot Cafe is still the best halibut in Alaska to me).

-Yamaya is the only authentic Japanese, though a very small menu and very rustic atmosphere. You have to call for reservations of 3 or more. They only serve chirashi sushi...no nigiri, hand or maki rolls. Better to go to Kobe or Benihana if you want teppanyaki though. All the Japanese who have business in town prefer it to the Korean-owned Japanese restaurants (Korean owned tends to be not bad for sashimi but otherwise tend not to be authentic tasting-would love to be proven wrong though). Dish gets a lot of buzz but if you are a real sushi snob I would avoid it and the other places entirely. Tempura Kitchen has a Japanese sushi chef who currently only works Fri and Sat nights but is the most authentic for nigiri and rolls.

Two Himilayan restaurants, owned by a brother and sister, are called Yak and Yeti, the other is called Namaste and while I prefer Namaste both are better than Bombay Deluxe.

Mexican in this town is mostly awful but ubiquitous for some reason. Taco King is the most authentic and reasonably priced. Oscar's food truck is actually very good for simple Mexican fare (small family from Oaxaca/Chiapas), but they don't have a phone number or website. They are on the intersection at 3rd Ave and Post Rd near downtown.

Charlie's Bakery has good Taiwanese style food, very good but not typical Chinese for an outsider used to mainland cuisines.

Ginger (upscale) and Bangkok Cafe (rustic) are the very good but neither surprisingly has good pad thai. Thai Kitchen (rustic) has good pad thai but not so great on other dishes.

Sacks Restaurant has by far the best lunch and dinner fare in one restaurant if you want local ingredient focused food. Weekend brunch is also the best downtown but not open otherwise for breakfast. Marx Brothers is a good choice, Cafe Savannah is closed. Captain Cook is good but overpriced. Crush in the 5th Ave mall is probably the best for light, healthier and inventive cuisine and decent wine list but is a bit spendy.

Italian: Romano's or Nino's are Sicilian inspired and not to my taste, but Orso is good if you like Tuscan.

SubZero (cocktails) and Bernie's Bungalow (martinis) are the best bars downtown but Humpys is best for pub-style live music with decent food.

Dessert: Sugarspoon is good, but Sacks is probably better for high-end desserts.

If you get to Girdwood, definitely try Jack Sprat's (extremely creative and local food here and not too expensive), but make a reservation since it gets busy. I would avoid Double Musky: crowded, expensive, and past its prime. Seven Glaciers is good but overpriced.

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Marx Brothers Cafe
627 W Third Avenue, Anchorage, AK 99501

Thai Kitchen
3405 E Tudor Rd, Anchorage, AK 99507

Charlie's Bakery
2729 C St, Anchorage, AK 99503

White Spot Cafe
109 W 4th Ave, Anchorage, AK 99501

Tap Root Cafe
1330 Huffman Rd Ste C, Anchorage, AK 99515

Bernie's Bungalow
626 D St, Anchorage, AK 99501

Tempura Kitchen
, Anchorage, AK 99501

Suite 100 Restaurant & Bar
1000 E Dimond Blvd, Anchorage, AK 99515

May 08, 2010
cariqunyil in Pacific Northwest

Anchovies overload

All of the extra sodium kind of makes me cringe.

I see nothing wrong with storing already salty anchovies in extra olive oil. The anchovies seem to last almost indefinitely as long as they don't dry out and are kept in the fridge.

Feb 17, 2010
cariqunyil in General Topics