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cake supplies and wrapping stuff?

Geez, I didn't even know Kitchenette existed - looks cute! I do like Container Store for glass jars and bottles; will try to make it out there to see what else they have this year. Thanks for the suggestions!

Nov 15, 2012
ca262626 in Philadelphia

cake supplies and wrapping stuff?

It's funny, I go there somewhat frequently, but didn't really think of them for this kind of thing.

Nov 15, 2012
ca262626 in Philadelphia

cake supplies and wrapping stuff?

So, I've been to a number of places with a good selection of the real stuff for making and packaging candies and baked goods, but I'm sort of curious about boutique type places that might sell the more expensive, poncier stuff.

Holidays are coming up, after all. Sometimes I see stuff online and think, it's so overpriced, but it's cute. And maybe for xmas gifts it would be worth spending a little more for something really chic. Would rather see it in person first, though.

Anywhere in philly selling this stuff? Thinking cupcake wrappers/cups, any sort of food safe bags or boxes, etc.

Failing that, maybe just places selling good ribbon and wrapping supplies, that I could dress up my normal food-safe packaging with?

Nov 15, 2012
ca262626 in Philadelphia

Great Fried Fish Sandwiches

Oyster House also has a good catfish po boy, but I think it's only available during lunch and brunch.

Sep 25, 2012
ca262626 in Philadelphia

Anyone been to Round Guys Brewing Co. in Lansdale?

Yeah, I keep hearing from people whenever I mention the brewery, "oh, I didn't even know they were open yet!" Definitely bare bones, but I liked the laid back feel and the huge windows (we went on a sunny Saturday afternoon). I plan on visiting again this weekend to see how things are shaping up now that they're actually able to sell things other than growlers to go!

Aug 16, 2012
ca262626 in Philadelphia

Shellfish Sue (Lansdale)

Eep, not yet - forgot I had a meeting yesterday afternoon and when I got home around dinnertime I was faced with fish in the fridge that needed to be cooked, so going out for seafood didn't seem to make quite as much sense! :)

Aug 16, 2012
ca262626 in Philadelphia

Shellfish Sue (Lansdale)

I somehow missed that it opened this weekend; just saw it open last night and am thinking about walking over later today just to see what's what.

Aug 15, 2012
ca262626 in Philadelphia

Anyone been to Round Guys Brewing Co. in Lansdale?

Yeah, that wasn't a style I was familiar with going in, and we were surprised by it but liked it. I was also a fan of their black IPA.

While I haven't been in since they started serving food, I follow them on Twitter and they've mentioned some other sandwiches (grilled cheese variants and I think maybe a meatball sandwich?) but it sounds like it's changing daily at this point.

Aug 15, 2012
ca262626 in Philadelphia

Anyone been to Round Guys Brewing Co. in Lansdale?

They only started operating as a brew pub about a week ago, but I visited a few weeks ago to sample some beers. We got a growler of one of the Wild Eye series sours, which we loved. Sounds like food is still rather limited.

Aug 14, 2012
ca262626 in Philadelphia

Bourdain [moved from Houston]

Must be! And then, oh my god, can you imagine if you had a conversation about which restaurants were good and then found out it was all fake?! WHY MUST PEOPLE PLAY SUCH CRUEL GAMES??

Mar 07, 2012
ca262626 in Food Media & News

Bourdain [moved from Houston]

Oh, come on. I can't believe anyone was actually offended by this. For one thing, his suggestion would totally work. For another, have you never been called anything worse than a "nerd"? HE'S a nerd, for christ's sake!

Mar 05, 2012
ca262626 in Food Media & News

The decline of the Italian Hoagie

I love that you did this! I've recently moved out of the city, so my spots have changed. We used to get delivery from Cosmi's a lot - unfortunately a lot of the food was very inconsistent but the hoagies were always excellent.

Sarcone's was closer for us, but the hours always left a lot to be desired and honestly, they were sometimes great and sometimes not. We also liked Chickie's, but only had their occasionally.

Now, in the suburbs, Goomba's in Colmar is my go-to place for hoagies and steaks. I recently tried Costa Deli in Ambler and was very happy with the italian hoagie and the steak we got - but that's an Amoroso-style place. Goomba's uses the crustier sesame-seeded rolls.

In fact, I know many city-dwellers will scoff - but, as an ex-Italian Market resident who has always lived in large cities and always found urban offerings generally superior... I prefer Goomba's to any of our favorite spots in the city.

Feb 22, 2012
ca262626 in Philadelphia

Help with vegan caramels

Yes, I actually meant to say - I use coconut oil too, though my "recipe" (I actually have a few different methods I use and the proportions are all in my head) is a little different from the one you've posted. I love making caramels because there are so many variables you can play with and so many really varied results that are (almost) always awesome. :)

I've bought the Wholesome organic corn syrup occasionally, but the price is prohibitive for me, and before I knew it existed I had already been experimenting with different sweeteners to avoid the typical GMO stuff, so I've stuck more with that route. But I do appreciate that it's available!

Jan 23, 2012
ca262626 in Home Cooking

Help with vegan caramels

Have you found an organic corn syrup other than the Whole Sweeteners brand one? I've gotten the impression that they're the only ones making it, but have been curious if that's true...

Jan 22, 2012
ca262626 in Home Cooking

substitute for corn syrup in popcorn balls/homemade candy?

Well, Karo did contain HFCS for a while until pretty recently, and it's worth pointing out that most other brands still do. So, read labels obviously, but all the store brands around me have HFCS in them.

Given people's different allergies, politics, and taste preferences, if someone asks about substituting for corn syrup, it could also be considered illogical to assume they're just too thick for their own good.

Jan 22, 2012
ca262626 in Home Cooking

Need help with British candy making ingredients

As I understand it, cream of tartar is basically a derivative of tartaric acid. So if the recipe calls simply for tartaric acid, you can usually use cream of tartar, but you need to increase the amount (I think you basically use twice the amount of cream of tartar).

You can substitute citric acid for tartaric, but it's not a 1:1 swap. Not sure off the top of my head what the conversion would be though.

Jan 22, 2012
ca262626 in Home Cooking

Stop Bashing Paula Deen

All that said, for the record, I don't think it's funny that she has diabetes. I don't think disease or hardship is ever funny. I don't believe that people always have to make their private life public (but if you are benefitting so greatly from endorsements and everything else, I do personally believe that people should take an interest in any conflicts of interest or deception involved).

I still think she comes across as a vapid individual with questionable morals.

Jan 18, 2012
ca262626 in Features

Stop Bashing Paula Deen

When Tony revels in foie gras or anything heavy in pork fat, he celebrates the people that work hard to craft that food and maintain a heritage that struggles to survive. Much the same as when he delights in beautiful soba or sushi.

Deen, on the other hand, tells us that slapping a burger between donuts is just good ol' Southern homecooking!

Sorry, but I think that does a disservice to her viewers AND to all the legitimately gorgeous food that comes out of the American South. While purporting to celebrate a food culture that is beloved for good reason, she offers up donuts-cum-hamburger-buns and fudge made out of processed cheese product.

Furthermore, Tony is more upfront about his vices (dirty water dogs) and doesn't apologize for them. Deen talks out of both sides of her mouth. When she's called on it, she feigns surprise and parrots, "but I always say 'in moderation'!" If you ever watch her show, when she uses the word moderation, it's usually in the context of a joke about moderation meaning you don't eat the whole cake, blah blah whatever.

Finally, if Tony one day finds out his cholesterol is dangerously high, then works to conceal that fact for years while not only still trumpeting the glory of foie gras but actively SELLING it (Deen pastes her face and name all over factory farmed pork, amongst a proliferation of other products) - THEN, one he's found out, tearfully admits to it and tries to change his tune, pulls strings to get Ariane a vegan cooking show, and teams up to sell us all Lipitor.... On that day I will gladly equate him to Deen. But only then.

Jan 18, 2012
ca262626 in Features

Liquid Crème Fraiche?

this is pretty much what I was going to say, though you may not really need as much as 1/3 milk... I remember once stirring less than a tablespoon of maple syrup into a tub of creme fraiche and it going completely liquid on me. Unfortunately that was not what I was going for. :)

Dec 29, 2011
ca262626 in Home Cooking

What in the world do I do with a leftover cooked half of a 6 pound roasted loin of pork?

So glad to find this thread already going - i roasted a pork loin that was at least 12 pounds for christmas dinner, and still have maybe 4 pounds left. Post-christmas leftovers are always the toughest ones for me to get inspired by - after a whole season of really intensive cooking, I'm just temporarily tapped out! I wouldn't have thought of posole but now I think that's going to be dinner tonight... and maybe some cubanos tomorrow!

Dec 29, 2011
ca262626 in Home Cooking

west side football bars?

Think fast: looking for a place nearish a 1 stop where a guy can pop in to watch Spurs-Chelsea in a non-douchey atmosphere. Any ideas? Thanks!

Dec 22, 2011
ca262626 in Manhattan

What kind(s) of fudge are you making for the holidays?

Wow. Looks totally over the top! In other words, PERFECT for Christmastime. :)

Dec 19, 2011
ca262626 in Home Cooking

What kind(s) of fudge are you making for the holidays?

This looks awesome - I've already made a couple batches of different caramels for this year though!! I might just have to make some of these for myself in a couple of weeks once I've worked my way through all the treats we get at Christmas. ;)

Dec 19, 2011
ca262626 in Home Cooking

What kind(s) of fudge are you making for the holidays?

Ohhh, I totally get that... funny how 'light' becomes such a relative term around the holidays. ;) Key lime fudge sounds great, actually. I never would have thought of that!

Dec 18, 2011
ca262626 in Home Cooking

What kind(s) of fudge are you making for the holidays?

That does sound interesting! I'm actually not that big on lavender, but I do know some people who are. Do you have a link for the recipe??

Dec 17, 2011
ca262626 in Home Cooking

What kind(s) of fudge are you making for the holidays?

You know, I've definitely had lots of good fudge made by different methods, and I think as long as the end result is one you like you might as well save yourself the headache! I don't make fudge often enough to really master it - other than at Christmas I never even think about making the stuff - so I've certainly ruined a batch of the "real" stuff here and there.

Love white chocolate and cranberries together. I made some chocolates for Thanksgiving with white-chocolate cranberry ganache (added some lemon zest to that, white chocolate can be so sweet), but fudge sounds even better.

Dec 17, 2011
ca262626 in Home Cooking

What homemade edible thing do you most commonly gift?

The candy melts are worthwhile, I think, for the sheer ease of use... they supposedly melt a little thinner and the coating is easier, and they set up better. Again, the taste is not great if you eat the wafers straight, but in this particular application, the coating is so thin and the filling so rich that many people won't tell the difference.

When I work with candy, I use real chocolate and temper it, but to be honest, working with chocolate in small batches as a home cook can be a real pain in the ass. I've come to enjoy the process but it does take me a while and I always make a huge mess.

For future reference, if you add liquid and your chocolate seizes, it won't be usable for your original use but you can always add MORE cream (closer to 1:1 ratio with your chocolate) and make ganache, which you can do something else with and not waste the chocolate. :)

Dec 17, 2011
ca262626 in Home Cooking

I need a savory bark

Once ganache sets up, it is firm enough that it doesn't "ooze" - it might be a little harder to break up by hand, but just in terms of raggedy edges. I usually do cut the layered bark into pieces for that reason, but it's not totally necessary.

And I don't really refrigerate it, but I do store everything I make around Christmas in our mud room just to keep it out of the way, and when it's cold out that room is cold too. That's sort of coincidental, and when I package and give it I don't worry about keeping it refrigerated. I don't know if the fact that the cream is heated or the sugar in the chocolate make a difference or what, but I've just never refrigerated ganache. I've yet to make anyone sick but whether or not that means it "should" be refrigerated is up to you. :)

I have added both cayenne and smoked paprika (separately) to ganache for other uses to great effect, but again, I've paired those more with dark chocolate. I don't see why a little spice wouldn't be welcome with white chocolate, though!

Dec 15, 2011
ca262626 in Home Cooking

What homemade edible thing do you most commonly gift?

Probably too late for this time, but you can buy candy coating wafers at any craft store that has a candymaking an cake-decorating section (a la Michael's or AC Moore). They're also often sold at stores that sell bulk nuts and candies. Merckens is one brand, but the craft stores around me sell another brand whose name I don't really know.

Dec 15, 2011
ca262626 in Home Cooking

I need a savory bark

Just wanted to add: for inspiration, try looking at the websites of some very high-end chocolatiers, and see what some of the interesting flavors they have are - then rip them off! ;) A lot of them flavor ganche centers with their more 'interesting' ingredients (Recchiuti's pink peppercorn and star anise chocolate comes to mind... that place was one of my favorite splurges when I lived in San Francisco) so they may not all translate quite so easily to a bark format, but you never know what you might find as inspiration. (Plus, of course, you can always come back here for ideas on technique...)

Dec 15, 2011
ca262626 in Home Cooking