drongo's Profile

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Party Early Birds

Shortly after I moved to the USA, I was invited to a colleague's house on a Sunday. Not wanting to offend by arriving early or late, I showed up exactly at the appointed time. I was surprised to find that my hosts were clearly not ready and somewhat flustered by my arrival. I was even more surprised when the remaining guests started arriving at least an hour late! I figured social norms were just different in this country.

It was only the following day that I realized that the Sunday was the first day after the change from daylight savings to standard time. So, of course, I had arrived an hour early. I was from a tropical country where there was no daylight savings time... and though I had probably been told about it, I had forgotten. So I had to make my apologies!

about 2 hours ago
drongo in Not About Food

Coming soon to Old Bridge...

Here's a recipe for the Equatorial Guinean restaurant: Cocodrilo en su Salsa (Crocodile in Sauce) http://www.celtnet.org.uk/recipes/mis...

Or Pangolin con Chocolate (Pangolin with Chocolate) http://www.celtnet.org.uk/recipes/mis...

1 day ago
drongo in New Jersey

food safety & murdering pathogens

Botulism toxin is fairly easily inactivated - not 160 degF, but 185 degF for 5 minutes does it. Staph toxin not so -- can withstand boiling at 212 degF. And I think Staph is the more likely contaminant (botulism is extremely dangerous, but incidents in developed world are actually quite rare).

Reference: http://www.who.int/csr/delibepidemics...

1 day ago
drongo in General Topics

Is it too soon to talk about Thanksgiving?

It's too early for me to start thinking about it. I don't even know whose house we'll be doing Thanksgiving in this year. But on Sunday I started getting "holiday" emails -- the first one entitled something like "100 Days of Holidays". I'm sure I'll now get emails each day for the full countdown from 100 to 0.

1 day ago
drongo in Home Cooking

Historic Taverns in NJ

No, I've not been there. Doesn't appeal -- it was opened in 1954 and doesn't look as though it's changed much.

Btw, attached is a recent review (from the Red Bank "Daily Register", December 9th, 1965).

1 day ago
drongo in New Jersey

Coming soon to Old Bridge...

Equatorial Guinea? Different continent, but Spanish speaking. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Equatori...

1 day ago
drongo in New Jersey

Historic Taverns in NJ

What about the Stage House Inn in Scotch Plains? 1737 apparently. http://www.revolutionarywarnewjersey....

1 day ago
drongo in New Jersey

Historic Taverns in NJ

Hah. The historic patrons in Colts Neck are at the Green Meadows Inn.

1 day ago
drongo in New Jersey

Party Early Birds

Hah... if you put a sign on the gate saying "We're busy getting ready for a fantastic party. See you at 6pm." then any stranger passing by could interpret that as an open invitation to go in at 6 pm! (If I were the passing stranger I'd certainly be tempted to give it a try.)

1 day ago
drongo in Not About Food

Consumer Reports Investigates Exploding Pyrex

Yes, I agree with both GH1618 and greygarious.

2 days ago
drongo in Cookware

Consumer Reports Investigates Exploding Pyrex

Since the title of this thread is about Pyrex, we should be clear that this has nothing to do with Pyrex.

I'm surprised a pitcher didn't withstand the fridge.

Last year I had a disaster with a pitcher (not Savoir Vivre -- I don't recall the brand). A couple of weeks before Thanksgiving, I decided to make a large batch of turkey stock (using turkey wings and vegetables). The only container I saw in my kitchen that could accommodate all the stock was a pitcher -- so I strained the stock into the pitcher and put it into my freezer. A few days before Thanksgiving I went to remove the pitcher of stock, only to find that the base had cracked and my stock had run out into the freezer (making a major mess, and requiring me to prepare another batch to support Thanksgiving). In my case, the fault was obviously mine -- expecting that a pitcher was safe to use in the freezer. But if I would have expected the pitcher to have been fine if only put it into the fridge.

Sep 15, 2014
drongo in Cookware

Where to buy harissa?

Whole Foods here in NJ has harissa (in jars).

Sep 09, 2014
drongo in General Topics

$100 for All You Can Eat During 7 Weeks at Olive Garden

If someone gave me the card and I could go only once or twice I would accept it. But if I had to go every day(or even once a week), I'd pay $100 to avoid the obligation.

Sep 09, 2014
drongo in Chains

$100 for All You Can Eat During 7 Weeks at Olive Garden

I can see why Olive Garden wants to restrict use to a named passholder -- similar to a season ski pass, where the company wants to avoid a group of people buying one pass and then sharing it. But since this is just a publicity stunt (and seems to be effective in generating publicity -- albeit not much good publicity that I've seen) they should probably just allow people do whatever they want.

Sep 09, 2014
drongo in Chains

If refrigerating tomatoes is supposed to be verboten, then what of gazpacho?

Dan Gritzer at Serious Eats has doubled down on his recommendation that tomatoes should be refrigerated: "Why You Should Refrigerate Tomatoes and Ignore Anyone Who Says Otherwise" http://www.seriouseats.com/2014/09/wh...

Sep 09, 2014
drongo in General Topics

$100 for All You Can Eat During 7 Weeks at Olive Garden

It's not simply "all you can eat" -- it's "specifically all of the pasta, salad, bread and Coca-Cola branded soft drinks." LOL. This is something that Caity Weaver should put to the test.

Sep 08, 2014
drongo in Chains

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

I don't know the facts. My guess is that if wages go up, the restaurants will initially swallow the additional cost to avoid loss of customers, but will introduce additional pre-processing by their suppliers and/or new automation to reduce the number of employees and thereby bring down the payroll.

Sep 05, 2014
drongo in Not About Food

Far-away Chains on your "To Do" List

I'd like to try Nando's (spicy hot chicken) http://www.nandosperiperi.com/
I think the only locations in USA are currently in the DC, VA, MD area.

Sep 02, 2014
drongo in Chains
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Texas Roadhouse

I've not been to a Texas Roadhouse in NJ, but have been in VA, NC, SC. I think it's good for an inexpensive chain (prices of mains $10-$20 - e.g. see http://www.restaurantmealprices.com/t... ) and in that context it's worthwhile.

I'm mystified about where jr got the turkey leg idea!

ETA: Here's the other thread that jr mentioned: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/986864

Sep 02, 2014
drongo in Chains

do cuisinarts ever die

My classic Cuisinart is from the 1980s. Still going, though I've had to replace a few pieces.

Sep 02, 2014
drongo in Cookware

Indian Pickles in Saveur

My guess is green brinjal.

Sep 02, 2014
drongo in General Topics

Inkanto Peruvian Cuisine in Hazlet

Interesting. It would seem to be a somewhat unusual name. According to the Sarasota restaurant, the name is a play on the words Inca and encanto, a Spanish word for charm.

Sep 01, 2014
drongo in New Jersey

Your Cost For Ingredients To Make The Day's Dinner?

I kept track of my total cost over a period of about a month, and it came to an average of $18 (food only, no drinks) per dinner for 3 people. We eat beef only about once a week and lamb less frequently than that, which keeps the cost down.

Aug 29, 2014
drongo in General Topics

DIrty Family Secrets

Hmmm... the smoked whiting and milk combo does sound odd. But recipes for kedgeree (e.g. link below) often call for smoked haddock to be cooked in milk. So the combination of smoked fish and milk has precedent. http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/10...

Aug 27, 2014
drongo in General Topics

DIrty Family Secrets

It's alive and lurking under the kitchen cabinet... be careful, very very careful......

Aug 27, 2014
drongo in General Topics

DIrty Family Secrets

Oooh... Oreos in ketchup is certainly creative!

And talking of canned tuna... this is not a family secret, but I have a current coworker who often brings a ziplock bag of sliced apples plus a can of tuna for his lunch. He puts the apple slices in a bowl and then opens the can, empties the tuna on top of the apples, and chows down. Creative, though I've not had the stomach to try to emulate him.

Aug 26, 2014
drongo in General Topics

Muscles!!

I dunno...

My daughter and her friends laugh at my pronunciation... my family is from Cornwall but I've been in USA for 32 years and so now have an accent that nobody accepts. My American-born daughter and her friends love to ask me to say "banana" but I don't understand why they find it so funny.

Anyway, I think I'd pronounce muscles and mussels just the same.

Aug 25, 2014
drongo in Not About Food

Aliperti's in Clark - closed?

I don't know if this is the reason they closed or a consequence of their deciding to close... but they sold their liquor license to Whole Foods, who plan to open a Clark location (on Raritan Road, in the soon-to-be "Clark Commons" shopping center).

Aug 25, 2014
drongo in New Jersey

Another McLoone's? This one in Hoboken

Rum Runner is being rebuilt. But I never liked it, so my hopes are not high.

Aug 25, 2014
drongo in New Jersey

Pass the Salt (But Not That Pink Himalayan Stuff) « Science-Based Medicine

Nice synopsis from "The Upshot" section of the NY Times website: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/26/ups...

Aug 25, 2014
drongo in Food Media & News
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