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Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

Was that a "yay?" Doesn't sound like it. I guess Yay and Yeah are two different things ;-)

If I were to attempt to interpret this, I think it might have been a:

Meh
Yay
Big Yay

.....in that order for the items mentioned.

But I'm not really sure.

1 day ago
Dave B in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

weez - that would work fine as long as your 'Scorpions' are very well-dried. Otherwise when placed in a similar container they could get moldy.

I've saved a couple of the TJ's grinders for a similar re-use purpose, one being for Szechuan peppercorns (prickly ash) I bought at an Asian market. The TJ's grinder has worked perfect for that.

1 day ago
Dave B in Chains

When do you use leeks?

grey - that's some great leeks inspiration. How on earth did you get fresh leeks without grit though...... I ALWAYS have grit in the bottoms every time I've worked with fresh leeks.

If only I could just chop/dice/slice the fresh leek parts with the abandon I do with an onion, I'd use fresh leeks much more often as I love the flavor. The tedious cleaning process lowers my fresh leek love, alas.

1 day ago
Dave B in Home Cooking

New Hampshire Shopping Trip

In Merrimack, Buckley's is pretty hard to beat for good upscale dining.

http://buckleysgreatsteaks.com/

The beef stroganoff is one of those easily overlooked items I keep going back to.

1 day ago
Dave B in Northern New England

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

My timing was lucky. After trying it a couple of weeks ago I was able to grab one of the few remaining wedges on another visit this week. I recall there were only 3 or 4 left.

Who knows..... maybe it will reappear, like the Red Leicester did (yay) after it's Spotlight debut.

Jul 26, 2014
Dave B in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

My pistachio opener tools arrived (two for $10 including shipping) and I will say I'm surprised at how effective and easy to use they are.

Had to make another TJ's stop yesterday just to get more Salt & Pepper Pistachios so I could test my new opener tool. The sacrifices I make.

And my fingernails are in magnificent shape after all this pistachio experimentation. Go figure - people start talking, and stuff gets done.

Jul 23, 2014
Dave B in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

And while we are on the TJ's spice grinders subject, a couple of months ago in a prior thread, Chow People were talking about the ghost pepper grinder.

I've asked about it in-store, but employee consensus seems to think it was a flash in the pan.

Any sightings?

Jul 23, 2014
Dave B in Chains

Best Lobster Rolls in Portsmouth NH

Nope. It's not.There's an awful lot of fantasy about that -- mostly unwarranted. If a cook/restaurant in Minneapolis wanted to present a great lobster roll they could as lobster is quite portable. The price would likely be higher, but there really isn't any magic in it.

Jul 22, 2014
Dave B in Northern New England

Good restaurants in Southern Vermont?

In addition to the great Brattleboro area suggestions, I'll add Top of the Hill Grill. Really good BBQ (pork & brisket), but they have a huge menu so for kids or others who are picky/not pure carnivores there are many other offerings. Burritos, chicken sandwich, etc. There is some covered dining area but this is a place best enjoyed on a nice day as the view and setting is "outdoorsy" in a great way.

It is very family-friendly. Mac n' cheese and burgers and dogs and chicken for the kids if they're not into brisket & pig. When I've been there seems like kids are always around.

I've stopped there a few time last couple of years and always loved the food, but more recently a buddy and I did the Mudder (May 29) at Mt. Snow and stopped at Top of the Hill on the way back to NH, and holy-sh*t if that didn't hit the spot. We probably looked like cave-men gobbling down the meats.

Jul 22, 2014
Dave B in Northern New England

Yoken's Portsmouth is Closing !!!!

Awesome that you resurrected this 10-year-old thread. Brings back those fond memories, again.

Thanks.

Jul 21, 2014
Dave B in Northern New England

Favorites from the new Trader Joe's

Sweet100s ---- definitely see carolinadawg's recommendation if you have some TJ's love and adventure in you. I predict you'll fit right in.

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/980914

Jul 19, 2014
Dave B in Chains
1

Lunch on the way to Boston

SweetTooth, what are you looking for? Quick sandwiches, or an upscale lunch?

Depending on the answer to that question, I'd say Concord or Manchester, New Hampshire, based purely on your logistics. You are either one or two hours from Boston, depending on the traffic.

Now that we've settle the WHERE....

Traveling with kids, or a romantic spot, etc? Seafood? Pub/tavern?

Jul 16, 2014
Dave B in Northern New England

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

I just added that to my TJ's list. Will give it a try!

Jul 14, 2014
Dave B in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

I did try the salt and pepper pistachios and boy they are great! I didn't have a lot of luck with the thumb-saving technique. Probably need more practice. This time I ended up going back to the traditional thumb-nail wrecking method. It was worth it.

I never thought to look before, but there are some specifically designed tools out there. Thinking about ordering the plastic ones at 2 for $9.96 with free shipping!

http://www.pistachionuts.net/
video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nw_L3...

Jul 14, 2014
Dave B in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

I just searched the thread and did find that a couple of people mentioned Bergenost and liked it. Must have missed the mentions, or just wasn't paying attention.

Glad to see some others enjoyed it too. This is one of the reasons I love TJ's.... so many new and interesting things to try. I almost certainly never would have grabbed a wedge of Bergenost if it had been at the grocery store, but it being a spotlight cheese there's a really strong chance it will be something different and special.

Jul 14, 2014
Dave B in Chains

Boston to Storyland... Any good roadfood?

Street 360 in Portsmouth has an interesting and varied selection of dishes and I enjoyed the food on a recent stop for lunch. They are open until 9PM.

They are fairly close to the highway.

http://streetfood360.com/

Jul 14, 2014
Dave B in Northern New England

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

Yay for the current spotlight cheese, Bergenost.

I haven't noticed any mentions of it here. It's a somewhat unusual cheese and seems fairly unique (to me). It reminds me of a young, fresh, slightly moist Gouda - salty, with a bit of pungency (in a nice way). There is a neat cratered separation layer (see photo) in the center which isn't evident until you start slicing and handling it.

I always buy the spotlight cheese, and am rarely disappointed. I suspect the Bergenost won't be to everyone's liking, but I think it is a wonderful cheese.

Jul 12, 2014
Dave B in Chains
1

Why is hummus expensive?

But I find that to be true even when I make from scratch, whether from canned, or dried chic peas I boil (I'm done with that method, BTW -- I'd rather pay $3 for 10 oz, myself).

Jul 08, 2014
Dave B in General Topics

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

Deanna - I did find that although they are fully cooked according to the package info, the inside texture is "mushy" unless you grill/heat them well. I think that is fairly typical of many chicken "sausage" type products.

Heat them up well and the texture firms up and they become even better, IMO.

Jul 08, 2014
Dave B in Chains

NYC to Portland, ME

Double-ditto on BT's in Sturbridge. I have yet to find BBQ in New England any better. If passing anywhere nearby, it is a MUST for real BBQ lovers. Get the brisket Ruben if you are at a loss as to what to order.

My only complaint, and it's a tiny one with BT's, is their hushpuppies --- they aren't Southern-style -- they are sweet, just like "yankee" "cornbread," which is a yuk for me.

Jul 08, 2014
Dave B in Northern New England

Best Food Cities in Northern NE?

Nothing will compare to Portland for the food scene, but for the larger northern New England cities (larger = more restaurant options), what first comes to mind is Portsmouth, NH, Manchester, NH and Burlington, VT.

Can't necessarily speak to best ways to keep an indifferent tweener entertained, but I'd lead toward Portsmouth with its rich maritime history. This boat tour of the harbor out to the Isles of Shoals is actually pretty cool. I think you have to reserve ahead this time of year.

https://islesofshoals.com/cruises (Isles of Shoals & Portsmouth Harbor Tour)

Jul 07, 2014
Dave B in Northern New England

Portland Good Eats and Activities Trip Report - LONG

Great trip report, krisa20!

Jul 07, 2014
Dave B in Northern New England

Favorite ways to eat fresh tomatoes and corn?

For corn, well, fresh corn - I have two favorite preparations:

Grilled in the husk, and cream-style the way my grandmother made it. I'm gearing up for the approaching corn season. Yum.

Jul 06, 2014
Dave B in Home Cooking

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

Because I saw these mentions of the Korean chicken sausage just in time before a TJ's stop yesterday I snagged a package.

Definitely a Yay. Just grilled them for several minutes and ate them plain. Quite flavorful.

Jul 05, 2014
Dave B in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

I've only had them once but I agree -- the Birds Nests are a very tasty item. Not sure why I haven't purchased them again.

Jul 05, 2014
Dave B in Chains

Where to stop for dinner on the road from Portland to Montreal

East Side Restaurant & Pub in Newport or Derby Cow Palace. Both not far off hwy 91.

Pro tip: make sure you gas-up your car before you cross the border. I made that mistake once and it was $9000/gallon on the other side.

Jul 04, 2014
Dave B in Northern New England

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - June 2014 [OLD]

Thanks! Now that I know what I'm looking for I may try to down-size to something smaller that the 900 count version if there is one available! I'd probably need another gym bag just to tote THAT size box in with me :)

Seriously - thanks though!

Jul 02, 2014
Dave B in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

Haven't tried them yet but they sound great. I have been shying away from pistachios for a while for the SOLE REASON that my thumb-nails get so chewed-up they hurt for days after. Maybe I have weak nails or something.... but it becomes an issue.

Or maybe it's just that when I start crackin' open pistachios I can't stop at just 50 of them....

I'm going to give 'em a go, though. I love pistachios too much to not try these. The TJ's nuts in the 1 lb. bags I've purchased (usually cashews or almonds) have been absolutely top-notch quality from my experience.

Jul 01, 2014
Dave B in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

Resurgence Yay for the 1000 Day Gouda. Already a favorite but just cracked open a new wedge and was reminded how great this cheese is.

Jun 30, 2014
Dave B in Chains
2

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - June 2014 [OLD]

Thanks for all the responses, everyone! Great to have feedback from multiple people.

Savour -- how would they be listed (found/located) on diapers.com? I took a lookie and they weren't immediately identifiable to me.

Jun 30, 2014
Dave B in Chains