iheartcooking's Profile

Title Last Reply

Sides for Jambalaya and other dinner guest advice...

I can't figure out how to reply to individual comments on here! (Using Windows instead of my phone like I usually do) So I'd like to thank you for the advice "don't let perfection be the enemy of good" and the thing about an acidic starter is also super helpful. Bananas Foster sounds good but I don't know how to make it, so I think banana pudding or ice box cake :)

Jazzed-up cornbread sounds very doable. I appreciate you hounds putting me at ease.

What's the best way to reheat coffee?

Microwave makes it taste so strange IMO... I don't know how to describe it, it's not BAD but I always find myself throwing it out. Since I like my coffee milky (not picky about the milk) I nuke whatever milk/cream as hot as I can get it without boiling over, then add the room temp coffee to it.

Or, if I'm working late, I make iced coffee with the morning's leftovers and drink it on the way to my work so I can start off my shift with a nice kick!

pre 90's before automation

this is the most confusing thread I've encountered on here but I'm enjoying watching the replies trying to suss out an actual point.

Sides for Jambalaya and other dinner guest advice...

We are hosting a couple of friends for dinner and I NEVER have dinner guests because I find the whole thing intimidating! Especially reading the dinner party pet peeves thread and worrying if any of those apply to me... But I can't avoid it forever. I'm a pretty good cook but not much of a hostess, it just seems a shame not to share my cooking with more people...

I'm getting off topic. Fairly sure I'm going to make jambalaya because I make it well, and that alleviates some of the stress right there. But it's such a one-pot dish that I never serve sides, and yet for dinner guests it seems I should serve something with it.

Any suggestions?
My guests are your dream come true- not picky and no allergies. One is pregnant.

Should I forgo any sides and make a dessert instead?

How can I get over being so scared about this?

Fried Calamari

I realize that I can cook this in a pot but I have a deep fryer that only goes up to 350degrees, anyone know if this would work with a slightly increased cooking time?

1 day ago
iheartcooking in Recipes

Cinnamon Yeast Rolls

I've made Alton Brown's overnight cinnamon rolls twice with great success. It is very daunting for someone like myself who never really bakes but they're worth the effort.

Jan 18, 2015
iheartcooking in Home Cooking

I really like slightly dessicated apple slices

I have nothing to contribute to this except that I prefer cold pizza to fresh hot pizza :)

Side dish ideas for fried chicken and waffles as the main

I think you can't go wrong with fresh fruit, that is what I would want as your guest

Jan 18, 2015
iheartcooking in Home Cooking

Home Cooks - How do you minimize food waste?

I know it's weird but I label all my leftovers and sometimes date them. I work retail and get these free blank labels that would be discarded anyway. Everyone is scared of unknown leftovers in my house so often they'd g thrown out. Now they're more likely to be eaten or repurposed. This has helped a bunch. Also my containers are mostly washed-out ricotta and yogurt tubs, so I'm saving money there too!

Home ec!

I'm so sad home ec didn't exist when k was in school. I would have made such good use of that.

Dec 31, 2014
iheartcooking in Home Cooking

Secrets Of The Rapid Ramen Cooker

Update: here's some desk ramen I had this morning at work.

Dec 30, 2014
iheartcooking in Cookware

santa brought me at deep-fryer

Haven't cracked it open yet amid the chaos in the house. Just took a breather to jump on here and see what my Hound friends had to say. Thanks and merry Christmas!

Dec 25, 2014
iheartcooking in Home Cooking

santa brought me at deep-fryer

And it appears to be a pretty good one. It has the heating element in the oil. I've wanted one for a while and now I'm intimidated to try it!
Could anyone recommend a good first thing to make that would help me get the hang of frying? It's just a countertop model so no big things. Or maybe you know of a cookbook or web page with good info on the subject? Tips from personal experience would be awesome too.

Dec 25, 2014
iheartcooking in Home Cooking

New Profile Setting: Collapse Previously Read Comments (also defaults to "See All" page)

I appreciate this, as with the update my browser constantly refreshes, collapsing threads I'd barely started.

Dec 21, 2014
iheartcooking in Home Cooking

Recommendation for your Holiday Beef or Lamb Roast ....

Thanks for this. Posts like these make Chowhound my favorite resource because of the generosity of people willing to share their expertise in detail.

Can I brown meat in the oven rather than on the stovetop?

I do something like this but I broil both sides of it and toss it in the crock pot. It's a good system!

Dec 07, 2014
iheartcooking in Home Cooking

Secrets Of The Rapid Ramen Cooker

This blog is Hilarious but I have to admit to owning one of these. I got it on clearance because I like to bring my own ramen to work, and add homemade chicken and sometimes kimchi and veggies and stuff. Anyway it does its job very well. Granted bringing ramen to work may be a bit odd but I love it!

Dec 03, 2014
iheartcooking in Cookware

The Crockpot Holiday Dinner? First Timer Needs Help!

I have to disagree that it would be a complete failure, but don't use the crock pot for your meat! I have had much success using slow cookers to make my sweet potatoes, stuffing, gravy, and to keep mashed potatoes warm.

Good things to cook in a George Foreman grill?

I hate it for meat- never gets hot enough in my opinion. I do however use it for grilled cheese and it's great for that!

Nov 05, 2014
iheartcooking in Home Cooking

crock pot "stuffing"

I've made stuffing in the crock pot for years, and I think it does rather well. I agree with the tip to butter the crock. I also advise using white bread, I have experimented with other breads and they seem to get really chewy.
You don't need as much liquid in the crock and you don't have to keep adding liquid. Although you may have to do so once. On a few of my stuffings I've had it dry out and overcook slightly in a ring around the sides where presumably the heating element is. So maybe keep it on low or only let it bake a couple hours.
If you have a crock pot I would do a dry run or two so you can work out any possible kinks. But even if you don't have time for that, try it out for your gathering. I think you will be happy with the results. If your ingredients are good your finished product will be too.

Oct 25, 2014
iheartcooking in Home Cooking

Upset and frustrated.. Help please :(

Ditto, I want to know how this turned out!

Oct 03, 2014
iheartcooking in Home Cooking

Signs of a NOT Authentic Chinese Restaurant

Friendly service?
I dunno, I've changed my perspective on this after seeing that most of my favorite places are semi-authentic, serving a few dishes they must get asked for a lot so they added to the menu so they can make money.
And I KNOW those fried wonton strips are not authentic but they are so nice to nibble on so who cares?

Sep 12, 2014
iheartcooking in General Topics

How do you cook your meatballs?

Pan-frying them seems to be the most authentic way, but I always make ridiculously large batches and bake them on sheet pans. The most important and also hardest part is spacing them adequately so that they brown evenly instead of steaming. So tempting to crowd as many as possible onto one pan.
I freeze a bunch and drop the rest into hot marinara before serving.

My youngest prefers them perched on top of the sauced pasta. He saw it that way in a cartoon, and I aim to please when it's such a simple request :)

Sep 12, 2014
iheartcooking in Home Cooking

Picky eaters are the bane of my existence...and now I live with them

This thread has been so wonderful to read because I didn't know how many Chow-step-moms there were on here! I want to share my experiences, because, for my step-sons and I, food was an important aspect of our relationship and became more so as they grew older. There aren't too many interests I share with teenage boys, but we all love food. We taught each other a lot in the time we've been married.
They were 2 and 4 when I became their stepmom and due to the miracle of 50/50 custody I was able to influence their eating and they influenced my cooking style. They love salad and fruit and hate cooked veggies, so the weeks we have the boys, our side dish is either salad, or fruit. Easy, and no food battles (I don't serve bread though, or they'd eat nothing else.) They eat a lot of processed food at their Mom's (no judging here- she is a great mom just not into cooking) and the youngest one has been known to complain about her microwave-lasagna (although my homemade is not terribly impressive). (Wow I guess I like parenthesis)
I've broadened their palates enough that we can try new foods on vacation and they trust me to order for them at a restaurant where nothing is familiar to them, because they know I don't try to force things on them that they don't like.
I think they actually know my cooking is an expression of love and are very gracious, even if they don't like something I made they try to spare my feelings, which is unbelievably sweet especially for the older one who has recently discovered sarcasm.

I also have the luxury of having every other week off from stepparenting, so DH and I can eat more adventurously those days.

Unsanitary behavior by restaurant employees

Not to mention, if I don't trust an employee to have clean hands, am I supposed to trust that they are going to keep pasta at a safe holding temperature?

Aug 18, 2014
iheartcooking in Not About Food

Unsanitary behavior by restaurant employees

Our immune systems are stronger.
That said, I'd never compromise the immune system of others with these poor habits.

What food do you wash that you're sure no one else does?

I do often wash/wipe down the tops cans.
I also don't wash most of my produce and I'm also a nail biter, and I almost never get sick.

What The Heck Is Up With All This "Chipolte" BS?????

I'm guessing that you met him then, as a friend of mine was instructed to pronounce it this way by Guy himself.
This was supposed to be a reply to "Fee-Eddie," but it wound up down here.

Aug 11, 2014
iheartcooking in Not About Food

What The Heck Is Up With All This "Chipolte" BS?????

My kids don't like to pronounce it so they ask me to make "that thing with the bread and tomatoes and green stuff." I'm ok with that :)

Aug 11, 2014
iheartcooking in Not About Food

What The Heck Is Up With All This "Chipolte" BS?????

This and poor pronunciation of words in general makes me insane, but lately I've started to let it go because, there's no point in being annoyed. Also my husband is one of the smartest people I know, but he says "nu-cue-ler", "EXpecially" and others that make me nuts. I told him it reflects not on his intelligence but on how others perceive his intelligence.
But, people are smart in different ways. A lot of folks struggle with pronouncing words correctly but they could do equations around me, or have more technical knowledge. So I don't see the point in letting it bother me just like it doesn't bother them that I can't, I dunno, take apart a carburetor.

Aug 11, 2014
iheartcooking in Not About Food