monfrancisco's Profile

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Do you pray before a meal?

Not really the place for this, but he was a great guy. Sharp as a tack and very funny, always took the long view. He kind of scared me when I was really little but the older I got, the more I loved him. Mary, his wife, was a terrific cook (pocket of veal! gnocchi!) and his daughters took turns babysitting me and my brother over the years.

Do you pray before a meal?

I grew up as a collapsed Catholic (thank you, Malachy McCourt)and we didn't say grace. The version of your second one I regularly heard as a kid at our neighbor's (Italians from Italy)house was:

Bless us O Lord, and these thy gifts, Which we are about to receive, From the bounty of your servant Aldo.

Aldo being our host and the speaker. Followed by head shaking or big grins, depending on the listener. The food at that house, by the way, was unbelievably good.

Jul 28, 2015
monfrancisco in Not About Food

Grating onions (without bawling your eyes out...)

I have a couple of recipes that call for them and have had exactly your experience. I now think mincing the onions super-duper fine amounts to the same thing without the grater and the flying shreds and the swearing.

Jun 29, 2015
monfrancisco in Home Cooking

Your favorite non-food-related items that get tons of use in the kitchen

How funny! My reply was going to be Kelly clamps. My mother the nurse had a couple of pairs in the "junk drawer" when I was a kid for just your sorts of reasons. Then I came to find out that pot smokers use 'em too, and Mom Did Not Approve when I told her. Anyway, I kept them -- they're useful!

Jun 23, 2015
monfrancisco in Not About Food

Please help me like chicken breast!

I think they're acceptable in stir-fries and as cutlets. For the latter, I trim off the "tenderloin" and butterfly then dredge in a little flour. You can sauce (or not) as you wish -- lemon, butter, and capers for a picatta is nice. By the way, I agree with every single thing you've said about both "parts".

The Etiquette of Bringing Your Own Meal on a Plane

The part that gets me is the pizza box. While there's no doubt she's got access to hundreds of them, I don't. And are you supposed to make it through all the airport nonsense keeping it level? If so, how? If not, why bother? (signed) Don't Get It

"We reserve the right to refuse...." Whole Foods

I always liked the Mad Magazine version: We reserve the right to serve refuse to anyone.

Wegman's Faux Pas [Moved from Boston]

After reading this thread, my guess is that the loose grapes came from the cull of people assembling "perfect" bags. Only about 80% kidding here... Doesn't answer the pricing question, though.

Jun 12, 2015
monfrancisco in Not About Food

How high is your tolerance for messy food?

I just wish you'd called him Mr BM in your reply.

Odd flavors - i.e. Cilantro tastes like soap or some foods taste like mold.....(?)

I recently saw a blog post touting a favorite dinner of white wine and artichokes. I had to wonder how much the blogger really likes either of those items. I'm a big fan of both, but not when in proximity.

Odd flavors - i.e. Cilantro tastes like soap or some foods taste like mold.....(?)

Hazelnuts (Filberts) and cilantro. The only two foods I will not eat. Dirt and unpleasantness all around. As for chocolate with hazelnuts--that's just a cruel trick.

Odd flavors - i.e. Cilantro tastes like soap or some foods taste like mold.....(?)

Thanks for this. I try to stay out of cilantro discussions because they're kind of boring and I'm adamant on the topic, but I definitely get "metallic dirt" rather than "soap" in my anti-cilantro mouth. I appreciate seeing the "right" signifier every once in a while!

May 31, 2015
monfrancisco in General Topics

How high is your tolerance for messy food?

Messy and self-conscious eater, here. So crab and corn-on-the-cob and so forth are at-home only. Last year I had lunch with a guy I'd never met in person before at a groovy/hipster sandwich joint and I ordered a grilled cheese-and-veg sandwich. Seemed safe. One bite in, the bread shattered into several pieces and I had an asparagus spear draped over my chin. Looked like a dork, found a fork and a napkin, carried on. He, on the other hand, tidily ate a fried-chicken sandwich and has become a fast friend.

I guess that my point is I didn't appreciate being ambushed by a sandwich.

Ruhlman's Foray Into Fiction

Hope you like as much as I did. I passed it around among four of my friends and three loved it while one was politely noncommittal which I took a as firm No.

Ruhlman's Foray Into Fiction

I read Epicure's Lament and thought it was outstanding. Really, really well-written with perfectly drawn characters. Lots of food! Then I came across an excerpt from her memoir, and it was as dreck-y as that blurb. Both puzzling and disappointing.

House Warming Party

If it's an open-house thing, take a look at this:

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/1000539

It's TorontoJo's cocktail party, and a remarkable spread (and thread!). Tons of ideas, absolutely beautiful, mouthwatering. Nothing for the grill as I recall (December in Canada) but it'll get you started I'd think.

I don't know her, but wish I did, and am very glad she's here!

help me name a drink

Vom Fer Sure.

May 27, 2015
monfrancisco in Spirits
1

How do you deal with the compulsive need for everyone to like your food?

"Complaint" for "compliant" is the best typo ever! Thanks. I'll remember this and seek my own use for it.

Scientific Methods Misapplied to the Evaluation of Cuisine

A Riedel stem makes me nervous. I know what they cost, and I know I'm a little clumsy, and those two factors together detract from my experience.

May 16, 2015
monfrancisco in General Topics

Biggest Tip Ever?

I'm sort of surprised that no one in your row gave you grief for not tipping!

May 12, 2015
monfrancisco in Not About Food

Biggest Tip Ever?

I stuffed $22 (instead of $3) in the tip jar at our local pizza joint, and was not too happy with myself when I discovered my error the next day since I was relatively broke at the time. I then proceeded to tell myself that relatively broke people shouldn't be having take-out pizza for dinner in the first place and that karma points are a good thing. I still think both things are true.

Famous Recipes

Me, too! But where's the tarragon in that recipe? I think that's a big part of why Green Goddess is so Good. It adds an elusive "what IS that" note and is in most of the recipes I've used. But now that I think about it, I came to GG in the 70s when tarragon was the herb du jour, so who knows.

May 09, 2015
monfrancisco in Home Cooking
1

Famous Recipes

Dammit, that was going to be my contribution to the thread! I'm not big on painting the lily, but if I have mushrooms, in they go.

May 09, 2015
monfrancisco in Home Cooking

First sip of the day

Oh, this is a good question. Years ago, I thought inventing First Sip Beer would make my fortune. That first glug of beer on a hot day is incomparable. My idea was to make beer that tasted like that all the way through. Naturally, reality and laziness (hey,would you grab me another beer?) intervened.

May 04, 2015
monfrancisco in Not About Food

Mother's Day Brunch - Help with menu please.

That Breville sounds like a winner! I thought you were offering make-your-own, and this approach seems much better.

May 03, 2015
monfrancisco in Home Cooking

Mother's Day Brunch - Help with menu please.

I'm always curious about logistics, so here's a question: How many waffle irons? At 26 waffles minimum, and 5 minutes per (maybe too generous, but people will be fumbling with a new-to-them set-up) that's over 2 hours of waffling.

And I agree with the other suggestions. Sounds like a fun party!

Ideas for vegetarian dinners, please

Not sure about your weather or crazy about this blog, but here's a solid recipe, Mushroom Bourguignon:

http://smittenkitchen.com/blog/2009/0...

Very, very tasty.

Why "cook from frozen"?

Hadn't thought of that, makes a lot of sense. I always put my (really homemade!) pie shells in the freezer before baking and just didn't make the connection.

May 02, 2015
monfrancisco in Home Cooking

Why "cook from frozen"?

Good point -- If there were, I'd be surrounded by black-and-whites with sirens blaring most of the time. "Step away from the expired aspirin, ma'am!"

So I did it my way. The food was perfectly fine, and I feel a little bit sick. Just as expected.

May 01, 2015
monfrancisco in Home Cooking

Botulism outbreak linked to Ohio Church potluck

Why? To tint it a more intense yellow. I understand that it's not a universal practice, and that I may have lower standards for dairy than you so you haven't ever seen it on a label.

My point is that I can't imagine how devastating it would be to have poisoned someone.