JoanN's Profile

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September 2014 COTM 'Avec Eric' Chapters 1-3 (Big Flavor, Star Ingredients, Farming the Sea) Reporting Thread

That's too bad. I wonder if they might be seasonal? Haven't looked recently, but I know they were in both the UWS and the Union Square TJ's about six weeks ago.

about 7 hours ago
JoanN in Home Cooking

Kitchenaid/Hobart mixer manual & attachment question

You did darned well getting a K45SS at all. They usually go for more than that on ebay, which is often the only place you can find them these days. I've had mine since at least the mid-80s and it's been a workhorse all those years. Great machine. Congratulations.

2 days ago
JoanN in Cookware

September 2014 COTM 'Avec Eric' Chapters 10-12 (Craftsmanship, Tradition, Cayman Cookout) Reporting Thread

Pleased to read that these work well on an indoor grill pan since outdoors is not an option and my new broiler doesn't deliver on the char as well as I would like. Another to add to my growing list.

Sep 14, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking
1

September 2014 COTM 'Avec Eric' Chapters 7-9 (Artisanal, Perfect Pairings, Oil and Wine) Reporting Thread

So disappointing to read this. I have a friend who adores chestnuts and this, along with the Browned Butter Ice Cream, was was planned for his next visit. Guess I'll have to find another go-with for the ice cream. Great attempt at a save, though, so kudos to you for that.

Sep 14, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking
1

What cookbooks have you bought lately, or are you lusting after? September 2014 edition!

Sep 14, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

January 2011 Cookbook of the Month: STIR-FRYING TO THE SKY'S EDGE

Yes indeed!

Sep 13, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking
2

January 2011 Cookbook of the Month: STIR-FRYING TO THE SKY'S EDGE

Summer Pepper Corn (page 219)

Not sure why I didn't see this until you posted about it just a couple of days ago, but so, so, glad I didn't miss it that time. I made this to go with the leftover Vietnamese Chinese Lemongrass Chicken on page 143 as I said I would. My only disappointment is that I didn't discover this recipe until almost the end of corn season. I doubled the amount of corn, just because I had four ears and realized I might not have a chance to cook them in the next couple of days. Was perfect; even without increasing any of the other ingredients. What a terrific dish.

Sep 13, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking
2

What cookbooks have you bought lately, or are you lusting after? September 2014 edition!

They're just impossible. I placed an order the end of May. Never received it. I wrote to them to cancel it. Twice. Never heard from them. It's still listed as "processing." Placed another order in early July. Never received it. Wrote to ask when to expect it. Never heard from them. Listed as "processing." If/when those books ever show up, I'm done with them. The $10 specials be damned.

Sep 13, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

Nominations Thread: Cookbook of the Month October 2014

Don't know about the UK, but sounds as though just about all those should be available to anyone in North America with a good fishmonger. Thanks for posting the list. That definitely makes me want to take a closer look at the book.

Sep 13, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

Nominations Thread: Cookbook of the Month October 2014

From the descriptive copy on Amazon.com, "Good Fish" sounds as though it's specifically a Pacific Coast book, which makes sense given the publisher. Do you know from looking through it whether or not the 15 varieties of fish that are featured would be available to us COTMers who live elsewhere?

Sep 13, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

Weight Watchers Foodies -- The Back to School Edition! September 2014

I ate vegan for about two months about a year-and-a-half ago. I lost a few pounds, but it was mostly at the beginning and mostly water, and mostly because I could never be far from the bathroom—if you get my drift. The only way I could venture any distance from home was by eating far more carbs, mostly rice, than I’m used to or care to. Decided vegan wasn’t for me. At least, not for any prolonged period.

Sep 13, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

January 2011 Cookbook of the Month: STIR-FRYING TO THE SKY'S EDGE

Vietnamese Chinese Lemongrass Chicken (page 143)

Was going to report that much as I loved this, it was a little too sweet for me. Then I took another look at the recipe and discovered I'd added a tablespoon instead of a teaspoon of brown sugar. Duh! What's the matter with me lately!?! I also used half a jalapeño, but mine didn't have much of a kick. So hard to tell with jalapeños, even if you taste them raw. I've made a note to use Thai chiles next time; at least I'll know what to expect. Was going to make the Pepper Corn to go with also, but I got lazy and hungry. Will probably make it tomorrow to serve with the leftovers.

Sep 12, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking
1

September 2014 COTM 'Avec Eric' Chapters 7-9 (Artisanal, Perfect Pairings, Oil and Wine) Reporting Thread

My oh my! Avoiding potatoes these days, but I see an exception in the near future. Sounds guest worthy. And I know just who to invite.

Sep 12, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

September 2014 COTM 'Avec Eric' Chapters 7-9 (Artisanal, Perfect Pairings, Oil and Wine) Reporting Thread

The sloppy way in which this book was edited is really bugging me. The first four or five recipes I tried from this book had no problems at all or I’m not sure I would have nominated it. I’m still enjoying the book a great deal (eleven recipes so far, and I’m not done yet), but couldn’t figure out how a publisher such as Wiley, who has been publishing cookbooks both for laymen and professionals for years, could have done such a carless job with this one. Well, I did a little searching and I think I’ve figured it out.

On the title page of the book it says it was “designed and produced by Anomaly.” In the lingo of the trade, that means that Anomaly handled the editing, copyediting, and proofreading and, after further research, I think the staff of Anomaly probably wrote the book as well. Turns out Anomaly, which is essentially an advertising and marketing company, was the company that produced the TV show “Avec Eric.” This may be the only book they ever produced.

That doesn’t excuse Chef Ripert. It has his name on it, and I’m sure that at some point he had to approve it. But it explains, at least to me, how this probably happened.

Anyway, I was sufficiently aggravated that I just pulled together all our complaints and wrote Chef Ripert a letter. I have no expectation of a reply, but at least it made me feel better.

September 2014 COTM 'Avec Eric' Chapters 1-3 (Big Flavor, Star Ingredients, Farming the Sea) Reporting Thread

You're right, smt. Polenta would be a perfect accompaniment here. I'm making a note in my copy as well.

Sep 11, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

September 2014 COTM 'Avec Eric' Chapters 10-12 (Craftsmanship, Tradition, Cayman Cookout) Reporting Thread

What a great idea!

Sep 11, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

Nominations Thread: Cookbook of the Month October 2014

I could get behind a.o.c., but would prefer a month when I'll want to do some entertaining rather than one I'll only be around for two weeks. The recipes, at least the ones I've tried so far, are excellent, but definitely not weeknight friendly.

There's a "Cooking from . . ." thread for this book if anyone is interested in taking a look: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9274...

Sep 10, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

Nominations Thread: Cookbook of the Month October 2014

Most definitely so!

September 2014 COTM 'Avec Eric' Chapters 1-3 (Big Flavor, Star Ingredients, Farming the Sea) Reporting Thread

Looks, and sounds, lovely. Just fyi, I find lovely pea shoots at Trader Joe's. In my local store, they have them near the packaged herbs.

Sep 10, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

What cookbooks have you bought lately, or are you lusting after? September 2014 edition!

Brodart is THE manufacturer of book jacket covers. It's who professionals, libraries, and publishers use. They have a huge selection, depending on your needs.

http://www.shopbrodart.com/book-jacke...

Nominations Thread: Cookbook of the Month October 2014

I'll only be around the first half of October, but would love to see THE BOOK OF JEWISH FOOD as COTM.

Sep 10, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

Weight Watchers Foodies -- The Back to School Edition! September 2014

Up .8 this morning. Could have been a lot worse. This was my first weigh-in in a month after three straight weeks of guests, parties, high- and low-end restaurant meals, a wedding, and untold (and untracked) indulgences. Couldn’t face the scale after that, so this past week I went back to tracking religiously before braving it with trepidation. The scale might be up a little, but I was really happy that for the wedding I fit into an outfit I haven’t been able to wear for nearly five years. Damn! that felt good.

September 2014 COTM 'Avec Eric' Chapters 1-3 (Big Flavor, Star Ingredients, Farming the Sea) Reporting Thread

Roasted Pork Loin with Wild Mushrooms, Garlic, and Sage Pan Jus (page 22)

This was such an epic fail, due almost entirely to user error, that I thought I’d be too embarrassed to report on it. But in the end, I decided there might be some lessons here, and I did see potential in the dish. And if you have to be embarrassed, it might as well be among friends.

First, the recipe: Tie, season, and sear a pork loin, add whole garlic cloves to the pan, reduce heat, cover, and cook for 25 to 30 minutes to 150F. Cook shallots, garlic, and thyme in oil and butter until soft, then add mushrooms and sauté until golden. Set the pork aside, add sage leaves and crushed bay leaves to the pork pan, deglaze with white wine, add chicken stock and simmer to reduce, taste for seasoning, then add the mushrooms to the sauce and set aside to infuse the flavors. Serve slices of the pork surrounded by the mushrooms and garlic with some of the jus drizzled over the pork.

My epic fail was that I was in another room and didn’t realize the pork was burning, so the garlic was mostly inedible and whatever jus was supposed to be there had formed a black crust on the bottom of the pan. But the pork still hadn’t reached 150F, so I said screw it, threw in some stock, and kept cooking it for another five minutes.

One of the reasons I’m writing this up, in addition to the fact that I think it could be a good dish and I’ll probably try it again, out of frustration if nothing else, is to tell you that there are problems with the recipe other than just the one I had. The instructions aren’t as well written as they ought to be and I would recommend that anyone wanting to try this dish take a look at the video: http://www.aveceric.com/big-flavor/ (it’s toward the end of the show). The recipe doesn’t tell you to cut the mushrooms, but they’re clearly cut up in the video. I quartered or halved them depending on size. The recipe calls for three sage sprigs, but in the video he removes the leaves from the stem and massages them to release flavor. And the recipe calls for crushed bay leaves, but I didn’t like the pieces of bay leaf in the sauce. Next time I’d use whole bay leaves and remove them before serving. Finally, the recipe calls for thyme sprigs but doesn’t say anything about removing the stems from the sauce. Next time I’ll just use the leaves from two sprigs, not the whole sprigs.

Even with all this, and with the meat, even though it was at the right temperature, being a bit tough and overcooked, I loved the mushrooms and the flavors. I’ll definitely be trying this again, just because I’m a stubborn old broad and hate to admit defeat.

And, just because I’m typing and thinking about it, I wish the book went into a little less detail on the wine pairings and at least minimal detail on suggested accompaniments. I was just going to have a salad with this, but I was thinking that if I were making it for company I’d probably want noodles, rice, or potatoes along with the sauce and mushrooms. Nothing in the book, nothing on the video. Wish he were here so I could ask him. And if he were, that’s probably the last thing I’d be thinking about.

Sep 09, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking
2

September 2014 COTM 'Avec Eric' Chapters 7-9 (Artisanal, Perfect Pairings, Oil and Wine) Reporting Thread

Ha! Guessing what your husband really wanted was chicken saltimbocca with veggies on the side. Lo carb be damned! Looks perfectly lovely, though.

Sep 09, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

High Rise Cooking - no vents?!

I live in a Manhattan high-rise and just recently replaced my range. I was hoping to be able to buy a range hood, even if it was just a recirculating one. But my building wouldn't allow me to do that. All I was allowed to install was an over-the-range microwave. I ended up buying a GE Café Microwave. I do A LOT of cooking, including a lot of stove-top grilling. The exhaust fan is adequate, but just barely. There are over the range microwaves with stronger motors, but none will do a job equivalent to an exhaust that can be vented outside. You just learn to live with it. Open windows, and even doors for cross ventilation, when you have to. Depending on where you move, your building may have different restrictions than mine. But if an ORM is your only option, buy one with the most powerful motor you can find.

Sep 09, 2014
JoanN in Cookware

Where to buy harissa?

Harissa paste is easy to make. Even though I can buy it locally, I usually have the ingredients on hand and will make up a batch rather than run to the store if I happen to be out it. I've had success with this one:

http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-...

It is better after sitting for a couple of days, but I've used it immediately in a pinch.

Sep 09, 2014
JoanN in General Topics

September 2014 COTM 'Avec Eric' Chapters 7-9 (Artisanal, Perfect Pairings, Oil and Wine) Reporting Thread

I've been waiting for someone to review this since it sounded fantastic, but I certainly never expected anyone to set the bar quite as high as you have. Hope it works with more pedestrian ingredients--when I decide to take a break from my diet.

ETA: Killer photo, to boot.

Sep 08, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking
1

What's for dinner #325 - The Transition to Autumn Edition [through September 12, 2014]

It's also called Boston lettuce and Bibb lettuce here. Can be confusing, especially for the less experienced, when you go to the market to look for one and it's labeled as another. I've been asked more than once by someone at Fairway with a list and a confused looked on (usually) his face which lettuce he's supposed to buy.

Sep 08, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking

What cookbooks have you bought lately, or are you lusting after? September 2014 edition!

Funny that's the recipe you mention. I was just having a conversation yesterday about tongue with the friend who gifted me the book. Although it was always on the cold cuts platter when I was growing up, it's one of the only things I have a psychological barrier against eating. I can cut the eyes off a soft-shelled crab, cut a live lobster in half, cut up a whole rabbit. But tongue freaks me out. The look of it, the texture . . . the papillae! Gonna take your word on this one.

What cookbooks have you bought lately, or are you lusting after? September 2014 edition!

I just acquired that book from a friend who was purging pre-move but haven't had much of a chance to look through it yet. Nonetheless, you can count on me for a COTM second.

Sep 08, 2014
JoanN in Home Cooking
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