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What's your best yard sale or thrift store cookware find?

Ultra secret location requiring an iris scan to enter. Cannot reveal. Hint: Canada.

about 22 hours ago
Nyleve in Cookware

What's your best yard sale or thrift store cookware find?

Our local dump has a building where you can leave stuff you don't want but might still be useful. You see something you want? Just take it! Over the years, I've found so many great things there that I can't list them all. But yesterday I found this! A beautiful Dansk paella pan - yellow enamel with just a few tiny chips around the rim. Free! It doesn't get much better than free.

1 day ago
Nyleve in Cookware
1

'Farm Eggs'

What the hens eat has an effect on the colour of the yolks. In summer, when my hens are able to eat lots of grass and weeds the egg yolks are dark orange. In the winter their egg yolks are a paler yellow. What I understand is that the chlorophyll in plants causes the orange colour. I also know that if you feed chickens marigold flowers, their eggs are darker orange. I'm not absolutely sure the colour translates into flavour. But I do know that my own chicken eggs are much more flavourful than store bought eggs. And it's not about freshness either.

Mar 25, 2015
Nyleve in General Topics

Fresh rhubarb emergency!

Thanks for that! How funny. Well the truth is that I won't be looking for rhubarb again before our own is up in the garden. I still have some frozen left from last year.

Mar 25, 2015
Nyleve in Ontario (inc. Toronto)

'Farm Eggs'

They're my chickens. I sell excess eggs for $3.50 a dozen to friends. The photo is of the eggs I took from my hens today. Sorry for the confusion. I always feel like I'm harvesting when I collect eggs.

Mar 24, 2015
Nyleve in General Topics
1

'Farm Eggs'

This afternoon's harvest. $3.50 dozen. I love my girls.

Pinenuts and weevils. Why has this happened 2 January's in a row? A bad infestation each time. They immediatelly go for the plastic container of pinenuts and find a way in. What is the best solution as pinenuts are so expensive.

Oho. Right. OP said weevils. My mistake. But the freezer method will still work. And if the nuts or whatever are then stored in a very tightly sealed jar (glass, not plastic) afterward, it will prevent anything that might be lurking in the cupboard crevices from moving into the new jar.

Mar 24, 2015
Nyleve in Not About Food

Pinenuts and weevils. Why has this happened 2 January's in a row? A bad infestation each time. They immediatelly go for the plastic container of pinenuts and find a way in. What is the best solution as pinenuts are so expensive.

Whenever I buy anything that is prone to get weevils, I immediate put the unopened package into the freezer and leave it there for a couple of weeks. This will kill any eggs that might be in the product. When I open the package eventually, I make sure it's in a completely tight container - like a glass canning jar with the rubber canning to screwed down tight. When they're already in your house, you have a to do a full clean-out and get one of those sticky pantry moth traps to catch any of the escapees.

It's a pain in the neck when they get out of hand. Once I had an infestation of those monsters that started with a bag of dog biscuits. When I finally clued into what was going on I found the damn things crawling on the ceiling! That was a mess.

Mar 24, 2015
Nyleve in Not About Food
1

Dinner menu feedback, please

I would have thought the same but I wanted a light touch to the scallops so I took the chance. The grapefruit turned out to be very sweet and mild - it was a pink grapefruit - and went together beautifully. if the grapefruit had been really tart it might not have worked as well.

Mar 22, 2015
Nyleve in Home Cooking

Dinner menu feedback, please

That term was invented to describe him.

Mar 22, 2015
Nyleve in Home Cooking

Dinner menu feedback, please

So dinner went really well. Thanks for your feedback. I LOVED the scallop starter - it turned out perfectly. It was easy to prepare ahead to the point of cooking the scallops, which doesn't take any time at all. The short ribs were delicious and I made oven baked polenta so i didn't have to stand around stirring. The asparagus went into the oven just before I served the starter. Not local - alas - we still have snow on the ground here, local asparagus won't be up for probably a month and a half, at least.

That said, I think I won't be inviting that particular couple over anytime soon again. He is a pompous "mansplainer" and she is just weird. Luckily we also had another couple over to balance out the ones I don't like. On the other hand, the mansplainer brings very good wine, so it wasn't all bad.

Passover

Here's my potato kugel recipe. I don't usually freeze it. I bake it a day or two ahead of time and refrigerate. I think it would probably be ok frozen, but I don't bother.

Potato Kugel

2 tbsp. vegetable oil
4 large potatoes, peeled
1 onion, finely minced or grated
3 eggs
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 cup flour or potato starch
Additional oil for top of kugel

Preheat the oven to 375o F. Pour oil into an 8 or 9-inch square baking dish and place in the oven while it reheats.

Meanwhile, grate the potatoes on the large holes of a grater (or in a food processor with the shredding disk). Dump into a strainer and run cold water over it to keep it from turning black. Squeeze out as much water as possible and transfer to a mixing bowl. Add the onion, eggs, salt, pepper and flour or potato starch. Mix well.

Remove hot baking dish from the oven. Pour the potato mixture into the baking dish, drizzle another 1 to 2 tbsp. of vegetable oil over the top and return to the oven. Let bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until the top is nicely browned and crisp.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Mar 21, 2015
Nyleve in Home Cooking
1

Passover

Here's the recipe for the veggie patties. I started making them to accommodate a family member who's a vegetarian, but everyone likes them. They freeze and reheat well.

Passover Vegetable Patties
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 medium green pepper, chopped
1 medium red pepper, chopped
3 raw carrots, shredded (about 1-1/2 cups)
3 medium potatoes, boiled and mashed (about 2 cups)
2 cups cleaned and chopped raw spinach, tightly packed
1 large onion, finely chopped
3 eggs, beaten
1 cup matzoh meal
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
additional vegetable oil for frying

Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the green and red peppers and cook, stirring, until soft – about 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Add the carrots, potatoes, spinach and onion and mix well. Stir in the beaten eggs, matzoh meal, salt and pepper, mixing until all the ingredients are thoroughly combined. Cover the bowl and let the mixture stand, refrigerated, for at least one hour or overnight.

Wet your hand slightly and form the mixture into patties – no more than 1/2-inch thick. (You can make the patties larger for main course portions, or smaller as a side dish.)

Heat a small amount of vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Working in batches, cook the vegetable patties in the oil until golden brown on both sides and cooked through, turning once.

Makes about 12 vegetable patties

Mar 21, 2015
Nyleve in Home Cooking

Passover

Home cooking board is appropriate. Not everyone who celebrates passover is kosher.

For the OP - are you looking for traditional dishes or something new? If traditional, many of the usual sides - kugels, etc - are easily done ahead. In fact most people will prepare everything ahead so that they can participate in the seder ritual rather than be fussing in the kitchen. If you're looking for something different than the usual, you can serve anything you like as long as it conforms to the restrictions of the holiday. I always do a potato kugel, which reheats well, and vegetable patties which I make ahead of time and freeze. Happy to share either recipe.

Bosch gas cooktop experience

Thanks all. That's helpful. I'm going to go for it.

Mar 20, 2015
Nyleve in Cookware

Bosch gas cooktop experience

I'm in the market for a new cooktop to replace my 15+ year old piece of crap that I've hated since day three. I'll be sensible and limit myself to a 30-inch unit in order to preserve counter space. I've been looking at the Bosch 5-burner model - seems to get good reviews and isn't over-the-top expensive. Anyone have any experience with this brand of cooktop? The high power burner is 18000 BTU and it's located in the middle. 4 others have varying power levels. Is 18000 BTU a decent high-power burner? Will I feel cramped by putting 5 burners in a 30-inch space? The controls are located in the middle front so don't take up width space. For what it's worth, my existing unit is just 4 burners and I've made out ok with it. Any feedback would be very much appreciated.

Mar 19, 2015
Nyleve in Cookware

Dinner menu feedback, please

Thanks all! I think I'll just serve nibbles with drinks before dinner. So olives, maybe some roasted nuts, possibly some kind of spready thing on crostini. Appreciate the comments.

A little background. I once planned a dinner party where it turned out that every single course had cream in it. For some reason this didn't dawn in me as I was planning the menu and only afterward, when we were all slumped over the table in a food coma did I figure it out. How that happened, I have no idea. But sometimes you get so focused on making particular dishes that you forget to mentally put it all together and see if it's too much.

Dinner menu feedback, please

Sometimes I lose perspective. So I just want to run this menu past all of you to see if it makes sense or if it's either too something or not enough something else. Dinner party is for 6 of us, no food issues and all pretty sophisticated eaters. One of the couples are close friends with whom we are completely comfortable; the other couple has been invited as a duty-dinner (we owe them a dinner) but they do make me nervous.

So I'm still working on appetizer (suggestions welcome)
Starter salad of arugula, red grapefruit and seared scallops
Braised short ribs in red wine
Polenta
Probably asparagus
For dessert vanilla panna cotta with a few berries and drizzle of balsamic

There will be home baked sourdough bread

Comments? Too rich? Anything?

Mar 18, 2015
Nyleve in Home Cooking

Vietnam with a cilantro aversion?

Now that you mention it, I don't remember much cilantro at all in anything. They use other herbs that superficially resemble cilantro but they aren't the same. That's interesting, actually.

Mar 17, 2015
Nyleve in China & Southeast Asia

Vietnam with a cilantro aversion?

In many dishes, the herbs are served separately in a plate so you can just avoid the cilantro. There were never any herbs actually in the pho, but you are expected to tear it up and allow it to wilt in the hot broth as you eat. It seemed to me that cilantro, in general, wasn't used quite so liberally in Vietnam as it is at Vietnamese restaurants where I live. And yes, just write those anti-cilantro phrases on a card, have it laminated and take it with you whenever you go out.

Mar 16, 2015
Nyleve in China & Southeast Asia

Smoked tuna

What about using it as an appetizer, somehow. I'd prefer NOT a dip or spready-type thing. How would you serve it as part of, say, an antipasto assortment? Would love something elegantish. Have a dinner party coming up.

Mar 12, 2015
Nyleve in Home Cooking

Smoked tuna

I have a chunk of smoked tuna - maybe half pound. I bought it frozen and it still in the freezer, so there's no emergency here. But I'm not sure what to do with it. Ideas?

Mar 12, 2015
Nyleve in Home Cooking

does silence on an rsvp mean they aren't coming ?

So the OP goes to the door and finds 17 of her relatives standing there holding casseroles. They push past the hostess and proceed directly to the kitchen, where they unceremoniously evict the caterers and then take over the buffet table. Tossing all the "fancified horse's d'ovaries" into the trash, they heat up their tasty offerings (Cheesy Mac and Burg Loaf; Mushroom Cabbage Surprise; Lazy Lasagna Scramble; etc.) and place them on the table. The OP's husband's family is delighted, believing that this is a creatively ironic twist on party food. The OP is later found weeping in the garage.

does silence on an rsvp mean they aren't coming ?

The OP only posted once after the original question. And that was on the same day as the original post. Something tells me she's not coming back. Anyone want to make up an ending to this story?

Mar 05, 2015
Nyleve in Not About Food

Kitchen towels - am I just being OCD about this?

Let's throw in the dog bed and a pair of dirty sneakers just for fun.

Mar 05, 2015
Nyleve in Cookware
1

Kitchen towels - am I just being OCD about this?

Omigod I must be such a pig. I had no idea.

Pork belly pieces

Sorry - I didn't mean to post this as a question/answer. But for what it's worth, I did as hotoynoodle suggested and it turned out great. Next time will get whole slab instead of pieces. Thanks!

Feb 28, 2015
Nyleve in Home Cooking

Pork belly pieces

So on impulse I bought some pork belly that was cut into pieces - maybe 1 inch wide and 4 inches long. I think I have about 1-1/2 lbs. I had originally had my mind set on slow roasting it. Is this possible? What if I re-form the pieces so that they're squished together as if it was a solid slab? Prefer not to grill - it's -20 C outside today. Ugh.

Feb 27, 2015
Nyleve in Home Cooking

Secrets to easy kitchen cleaning?

Wait. So you're worried about the "petroleum" base of Barkeepers Friend but you're ok using car polish on cookware to avoid fingerprints? I am puzzled.

Feb 20, 2015
Nyleve in Not About Food

does silence on an rsvp mean they aren't coming ?

Brilliant reply. Brings back an evil eye memory from my own family. I was visiting my parents with my two kids - a 3 month old and a 2 year old. There was another couple visiting them at the time also. The woman was over-the-top slavering over my baby son. She went on and on saying how beautiful he was ad nauseum. After this couple left, my son had a bout of colic, which occasionally happened in the early evening and I spent about an hour in a quiet bedroom getting him settled down. Well, when I came out of the bedroom, I found my mother in the kitchen doing some kind of weird ritual involving matches, some charcoal and a glass of water. I had never seen her doing anything like this before. Turns out she was sure her friend had put the evil eye in my son (which is why the crying fit) and she was performing the remedy. I was shocked. I had no idea she did stuff like that. She was a bit embarrassed to explain it to me but I guess I shouldn't have been so surprised - she was born in Transylvania.