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shygirl's Profile

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What's your "secret ingredient?"

Fish sauce

Mar 12, 2012
shygirl in Home Cooking

Your most prized recipe book and why.

My most prized cookbook is my own binder full of recipes I love and find reliable. After collecting recipes and cookbooks for decades, I decided to type out the true keepers and put them in one spot, and I can highly recommend doing that. Only problem is that it keeps growing.....

Mar 12, 2012
shygirl in Home Cooking

WEIGHT WATCHERS FOODIES: WHAT ARE YOU COOKING? PART 5

I haven't worked out the points yet, but I am just crazy about vegetarian brown rice sushi. It is delicious, filling, and makes me feel healthy and yet spoilt at the same time. It's a genuine treat, not a substitute for more fattening things.

Another thing that makes me feel healthy and happy is "jugo verde" (green juice), which I whip up in the blender. Lots of raw green stuff: spinach, celery, parsley, mint, etc., with some sort of juice to blend it all together. Probably not to everyone's taste, but I can't believe how refreshing it is, and the points would be minimal. Only proviso: have it cold & fresh - it does not keep well.

Mar 04, 2012
shygirl in Home Cooking

Proper Tea Party for Fifteen, Would Love Suggestions

Me, too! Too bad everyone here can't get together and have the mother of all tea parties.

Feb 23, 2012
shygirl in Home Cooking

Proper Tea Party for Fifteen, Would Love Suggestions

Hi, Chowser....have you ever seen tea filters? http://www.finum.com/permanent-tea-fi...

They changed my life! I'd tried virtually every means of steeping my loose tea and this is the best because it allows much better infusion and can be used "forever." They're easy to clean and can fit in a mug or teapot.

I also love my glass teapot and warmer. In addition to being the best teapot I have ever had (lightweight, no drips), it lets the tea be seen in all its glory, especially beautiful with the candlelight glowing through it. http://www.davidsonstea.com/glass_tea...

But now you have me wanting to make flower-shaped bread! I've always cut my little sandwiches in different shapes but did not know there were special bread tubes. I am agog. Isn't it bad enough I already have not one but two madeleine pans? And neither fits into my (large) toaster oven. Sigh.

Feb 23, 2012
shygirl in Home Cooking

Proper Tea Party for Fifteen, Would Love Suggestions

Oh, my, arlenemae, I wish I could attend one of your tea parties. The one you described above sounds heavenly, especially as I am mad for macarons as well.

Feb 23, 2012
shygirl in Home Cooking

Proper Tea Party for Fifteen, Would Love Suggestions

I've had afternoon tea many times, incl. at Fortnum & Mason in London, and little savouries were always served. At F&M, which was the fanciest, or "most proper," there were tiny sandwiches, a little scone with clotted cream and strawberry preserves, and petit fours. In other tearooms, there have been little sandwiches always (my favourite part), often a savoury scone as well as a plain one w/ cream and curd &/or jam, teeny-tiny quiches, and always some sort of sweet finish - shortbread, perhaps, or a truffle, etc.

At my own tea parties, I've served gougeres, which were hugely popular, tiny crab cakes, or other miniature savouries. The fancy sandwiches are always nice, but I like to include something hot besides the scones.

You're going to have so much fun, and everybody will love it.

Feb 23, 2012
shygirl in Home Cooking

Cookbooks you shouldn't have purchased...which books just didn't work for you?

Hear, hear.

Feb 20, 2012
shygirl in Home Cooking

Cookbooks you shouldn't have purchased...which books just didn't work for you?

Breadcrumbs, I love what you wrote. I don't buy cookbooks (or many books at all) anymore, mainly because of lack of space for them, but I love to read them and agree wholeheartedly with your sentiments. (Have you read Molly Wizenberg's book?)

Feb 20, 2012
shygirl in Home Cooking

Cookbooks you shouldn't have purchased...which books just didn't work for you?

I take books out of the library and then try to find the most appealing recipes online, so I can print them out and put them into my binder. So many cookbooks now are so huge and/or beautiful that I feel unable to use them in the kitchen (and wouldn't risk damaging library books anyway). I read them in bed and work from my print-outs, which I put in plastic sleeves so that I can splatter away to my heart's content. It's so much easier to handle one page at a time. Also, I am somewhat visually-impaired, so I print them out in a larger font that's easier to read.

I am curious as to whether anyone here has had issues with Martha Stewart's recipes, not a single one of which (I've tried a few) has worked for me without major tweaking.

Feb 20, 2012
shygirl in Home Cooking

Cookbooks you shouldn't have purchased...which books just didn't work for you?

Same here, Vorpal. :)

Feb 20, 2012
shygirl in Home Cooking

Was your mom a timid cook?

Do you mean nomadism? Yes, it is a blessing to be near my mother, especially as I lived far away from her for years at a time starting when I was in my teens. At this point in our lives, despite my wanting a major change of scenery, I will not likely leave. Mothers and daughters go through so much "agony & ecstacy" and we've certainly had our share of that. Now that the roles are somewhat reversed, our friendship is so much more precious to me and, I think, to her as well. And it's funny how much food is a part of that!

Feb 20, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

Was your mom a timid cook?

Hi, Caroline1.....actually, I did that just the other night. We went to quite an edgy new place with really interesting stuff on the menu and she LOVED it. :)

Feb 19, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

Do some families really do this?

I'm the same as you, Melpy - can't get out of the shop for under $30.

Feb 19, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

Was your mom a timid cook?

Interesting question!

My mother was never what I'd call a timid cook, and was actually somewhat avant-garde, as was her own mother. Meals were fairly predictable when we were young, but Mum would try out things no one else's mother seemed to be serving, and got more and more adventurous as the years went by. Now that she has stopped cooking altogether, she says food interests her more than ever.

Even as quite a young child, I was aware that we had things in our house that my friends didn't - always "REAL" cheese, a proper peppermill, and fewer processed foods.

Feb 19, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

Tell Me About Your Favorite "Square Meal?"

The very words "Square Meal" take me back to the past, when my mother served a salad, meat, starch, green veg & usually another veg, and a light, fruit-based dessert (or the somewhat-dreaded tapioca pud with a spot of jam that I tried to make last through every bite of the fish eyes).

However, the definitive Square Meal was our not-every-Sunday thrill of roast beef, Yorkshire pudding, the best gravy in the world, mashed potatoes, peas, carrots, and a special dessert, say, apple pie with sharp cheddar.....YUM!!!! And then when it was all done, my dad & I would have a final bite of the beef. Good memories.

Nowadays, it'd probably be a one-pot Vietnamese dish, or maybe brown rice vegetarian sushi.

Feb 19, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

peanut butter cookie recipes using natural?

I know this is years later, but I thought I'd throw in my 2 cents' worth anyway.

I have NEVER used processed peanut butter. I use a crunchy all-natural pb that contains only peanuts & salt, and have never had complaints. People consistently love my cookies, and that includes a couple of pb haters I know. I have accidentally doubled the amount of pb called for, and the cookies came out even better.

Over the years I've tried a variety of different recipes, but my latest favourite is Judith Jones's, from her book, 'The Pleasures of Cooking for One."

Anyway, I hope you have been enjoying some good cookies over the past few years. :)

Feb 06, 2012
shygirl in Home Cooking

Is There Any Commonplace Dish You've Never Eaten?

I'd eat bugs before I'd eat, say, prairie oysters.

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

What to expect at a "Tea"

Oh, I want to go to one of YOUR tea parties!

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in Not About Food

What to expect at a "Tea"

I would just call it a "tea" and leave it at that. If people want to know what they're getting, they can ask, can't they?

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in Not About Food

What to expect at a "Tea"

I was very interested to read about the Scottish HIgh Tea. A couple of years ago, I did a Burns Day tea party, which I did not label as either afternoon or high tea (and I did know the difference). I just made a bunch of goodies including hot crab cakes (because I didn't think kippers would go over too well with the non-Scots), scones, oatcakes, etc., etc. One of the guests commented that it was truly a high tea because of the extra hot & savoury components.

I would love to hear anything more you'd like to tell about Scottish teas, Lizard.

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in Not About Food

Is There Any Commonplace Dish You've Never Eaten?

LOL I really do learn something new everyday!

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

Is There Any Commonplace Dish You've Never Eaten?

A bit like headcheese? It does ick me out, but I don't know why, since I like liver & sweetbreads. I'm in favour of utilising every part of the critters who give their lives for us; I just haven't got up the nerve yet to try it all. At least "scrapple" sounds okay - the word itself, I mean - whereas "headcheese" just sounds revolting.

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

Is There Any Commonplace Dish You've Never Eaten?

Sueatmo: Do you love any and all food, be it canned, processed, whatever? I like squid and octopus and liver and beets and any number of the things mentioned by other posters, but hot tinned tuna and hot cottage cheese are not among my preferences. I keep trying certain things that really repulse me, such as oysters and haggis, thinking I might someday understand their appeal, but no such luck so far. More for others to enjoy. I even tried - and liked! - sweetbreads recently. Who knew?

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

Is There Any Commonplace Dish You've Never Eaten?

LOL

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

What's The One Thing You Can't Eat, even for money.

mpjmph, I feel your pain re mayo on an otherwise good sandwich. I always specify NO MAYO and yet have had to send back many sandwiches and burgers tainted by it. My dining mates always get very annoyed with me for making a fuss, but it's so nauseating, I just can't relent.

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

Is There Any Commonplace Dish You've Never Eaten?

Have you tried cilantro more than once? I hated it the first couple of times and fell in love with it the third time. Now it's a staple in my kitchen. I know others who've felt the same way. Definitely an acquired taste.

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

Is There Any Commonplace Dish You've Never Eaten?

I don't like avocado unless it IS mashed up with loads and loads of fresh lime juice and eaten with something very crispy. Otherwise, that texture.......! You think peaches are bad!!

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

Is There Any Commonplace Dish You've Never Eaten?

It's funny - I went through a corned beef hash phase many years ago. Loved it. Had it a bunch of times, then just stopped. Not sure why, but just not interested in it since then.

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in General Topics

Is There Any Commonplace Dish You've Never Eaten?

ROFL - that's exactly what oysters are like!

But I think crab is far superior to lobster.

Feb 05, 2012
shygirl in General Topics