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Chili vs. Coney Island sauce

If I had a recipe, I'd make it. I had one years ago that's now lost to time that used a Garibaldi-brand tamale. The best I can do is say take a look at the photos in the link I posted. The sauce is heavy on sauce side, rather than thick on the beef side of things, and has a definite viscosity to it.

The sauce shouldn't be all that unusual. It's similar to what other west coast chili dog or coney dog stands have used that I've encountered over time.

<shrug>

Jul 12, 2014
RelishPDX in General Topics

Any Chuck Steak recipes that are not for the grill?

Braised with cranberries. Even canned can work.

http://www.nytimes.com/2000/11/29/din...

Jul 12, 2014
RelishPDX in Home Cooking

Chili vs. Coney Island sauce

So yesterday I tried my hand at making Coney sauce. I should have suspected it might not be exactly what I was looking for when looking through the recipes in threads here and generally on the internet, as this Michigan-style/red hot/Texas chili-style sauce wasn't exactly what I was looking for.

If you look at the photos 2 and 7 at the link below, this is what I was trying to come close to:

http://www.yelp.com/biz/roakes-portla...

It's much more saucy than meaty, and has a gooeyness to it that I'm not especially sure of what makes it like that. Cheese, perhaps?

Any ideas, anyone?

Jul 12, 2014
RelishPDX in General Topics

Famous foods from your region you find tasty and delicious.

«Hoppel Poppel: It's my go-to brunch option if it's on the menu. Something about having summer sausage in a breakfast dish makes me really happy.»

Wow, that's the first time I've heard Hoppel Poppel as the name of a sausage. From my youth, I associate the name with ice cream:

http://hoppelpoppel.com

Jul 12, 2014
RelishPDX in General Topics

Truth in Labeling

At the very least, they should have been labeled something like 'Krab Kakes', to tip you off.

What were they charging for this imitation product? That could have been a tip-off from the beginning. A good real crab cake will cost some bucks.

Jul 12, 2014
RelishPDX in General Topics

New Yorker archives: Why ketchup is universally ketchup

The New Yorker promoted access to this piece from 2004 in a tweet this morning, "The Ketchup Conundrum", which is included in their food anthology book, "Secret Ingredients".

http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2004...

It's a very interesting read. It had piqued my interest, especially since I was finally going to break down and buy a bottle of banana ketchup on my next trip to one of my local Asian markets to see what that was all about.

One thing I'd never realized was that the basic composition of ketchup hits all of the five known tastes in the human palate: salty, sweet, sour, bitter, and umami.

(I'd also not known that China is now the world's largest tomato grower, even though tomatoes haven't traditionally been an important part of Chinese cuisine over the centuries. Hmm, perhaps my still all-time favorite comfort food, a plate of Tomato Beef Chow Mein (it's the San Francisco in me), will one day be popular there!

)

I posted this here instead of on the Food Media board, as I thought it would be interesting to talk about the different kinds of ketchup out there, what makes them unique, and why basic Heinz keeps growing in popularity, while other condiments, like mustard, as mentioned in the article, continue to become more fragmented.

Have you tried other kinds of ketchup? Ever tried making your own? Do you appreciate the difference when a restaurant makes their own ketchup?

Jul 12, 2014
RelishPDX in General Topics

Refried Beans woe

Hmm, well today I made refried beans for the first time ever. I don't know why I've never done this before. Err, maybe because it makes so danged much! I don't know what I'm going to do with this bounty of refrieds, though. Freeze most of it, to start, I'd guess.

I used mayocoba beans, and prepared them as directed in the livestrong.com recipe (using bacon grease), only the bag o' beans from the bulk bin that I eyeballed while scooping was only about 1¾ cups:

http://www.livestrong.com/article/447...

Once the beans were soft, I scooped them into a deep pan with just enough of the liquid to whiz them to a soft consistency with the immersion blender. Then I used butter in the pan to refry them briefly with some salt and pepper. I was very surprised at how little salt they needed. Overall, very happy with this experiment.

Jul 11, 2014
RelishPDX in Home Cooking

Another of those whacky "best of" lists to chew over: this time it's coffee shops in the USA

Ugh, I'm showing my age. I thought this would be about coffee shops, not coffee houses.

Jul 11, 2014
RelishPDX in General Topics

"Manager's Specials" at supermarket

I'd never noticed the connection with sale ad dates, but I did notice the clearance bin at my local Safeway had a veritable bounty of meat markdowns Tuesday night while I was shopping. The new ads start on Wednesdays here.

I rarely buy from the clearance bin, since most of the meat has begun to change color. They can also be packages re-wrapped because the original wrapping had become punctured. There was a particularly nasty-looking package of bacon in there that had obviously been compromised in some way—it was well within its sell-by date, but all of the bacon inside was an unappetizing brown color.

I usually pass over the meat markdowns, but eggs at my Safeway sometimes get the markdown treatment. I picked up an 18-pack of Eggland's Best that still had a week to go on that trip this week. Regular price $4.99, on sale this week for $3.99, then a 50% off sticker on it. It rang up for a few cents less than a normal dozen of store-brand eggs.

Jul 11, 2014
RelishPDX in General Topics

What is this sauce called?

What color is it? Green, like a pesto, brown like a balsamic sauce, or some other color?

(I'm surprised no one's asked this yet!)

Jul 11, 2014
RelishPDX in General Topics
1

America's Test Kitchen reviews are meaningless

I often do taste tests of my own, and found one linked in another thread on fish sauces which I thought was excellent:

http://ourdailybrine.com/fish-sauce-t...

This is the type of taste test I like to see, and hope the site takes off and does more like this one. The follow-up from the author added a lot to the review.

I doubt if ATK can compare, or should be compared to this kind of detail. ATK's tests are just a segment on a time-limited TV broadcast, and should be taken as such.

Jul 11, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News
2

FN quest for ratings: we are more likely to see Giada De Laurentiis or Bobby Flay cooking “ethnic foods” than we are to see a brown person cooking them.

Ah, gotcha. It did leave me scratching my head a bit because your posts always seem well thought out and lucid, but now I see where you're coming from.

As with another recent thread here, every time I see someone use 'flavor profile' in place of something like 'taste', a little buzzer goes off in my brain. :)

Jul 11, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News

FN quest for ratings: we are more likely to see Giada De Laurentiis or Bobby Flay cooking “ethnic foods” than we are to see a brown person cooking them.

I'm not sure I understand your reply. I was inferring in my post that you have to look beyond the success rate of the shows which came about due to Next FN Star in your previous reply.

If people don't use the knowledge handed to them on a silver platter, you can't necessarily fault the instructor.

Jul 11, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News

WashPost declares end of gluten-free fad

GF is an extremely difficult diet to follow if you're doing it for medical reasons and have to examine every morsel you eat. I wonder how many people who are doing it for the fad are totally GF, or have just cut out the obvious things, like breads and pasta, etc., but let most or all of the hidden sources of gluten slip through because of the difficulty level of being that vigilant.

Jul 11, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News
1

FN quest for ratings: we are more likely to see Giada De Laurentiis or Bobby Flay cooking “ethnic foods” than we are to see a brown person cooking them.

«all I can point to is their success rate»

You can lead a horse to water ... ;)

Jul 10, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News

FN quest for ratings: we are more likely to see Giada De Laurentiis or Bobby Flay cooking “ethnic foods” than we are to see a brown person cooking them.

«I have read about how some contestants on FN Star are given contracts to ensure them to at least make top 6 - meaning that they playing field isn't level for all contestants at the start.»

Hmm, that's very interesting.

Still, I don't think it takes away from the point I made that if you really study the Next FN Star series, and apply what may be learned from it, you can mine a lot of valuable background about what skills you need to hone if you wanted to break into the business. Even if your start is by creating YouTube videos to express your cooking POV.

I'd even gather that with some real effort, there are plenty of people out there who could do better in front of the camera than the professionals did in the early days of FN.

Where else in the world could you get such training?

Jul 10, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News

What Grocery Store Sales or Bargains Have You Bought Recently?

Been a while since anyone's posted here. Thought I'd update from my shopping spree Tuesday night.

I used this month's $10 off a $50 purchase coupon at Safeway and snagged a few good deals.

• Got a coupon for a free rotisserie chicken on a future visit (since the display case in the deli was empty of cooked chickens), value $7.49 when they aren't on sale

• Extra-meaty baby back ribs for $2.49/lb ($1.99/lb. after figuring in 20% off on the coupon). Picked up a couple of 3 lb. racks

• Free InnovAsian 16oz. dinner (reg. $6.99) using J4U offer

• Limes are back down to 25¢ each

• Yellow onions 59¢/lb using J4U offer

• Safeway brand white long-grain rice, 2 lb. bag for $1.28 using J4U offer

• 80/20 ground beef is down to $3.49/lb. as 'regular price' these days, down 50¢/lb., so I bought a 4 lb. pkg. and split it ½ for meatballs and ½ I cooked and froze to do something with later, like perhaps a Coney sauce.

Before I entered my club card and handed over the coupons from this week's paper, the register said $72.71. Ended up paying $41.76, a 43% savings according to the receipt, before figuring in the free chicken coupon.

(Now, when did regular everyday parsley get to be 99¢ per bunch? Yeah, it was very fresh and I got a nice quantity of it in the bunch, but 99¢?!?)

Jul 10, 2014
RelishPDX in General Topics

Love my new immersion blender

That's the brand I bought, too. Though I bought mine off of craigslist for $10. If you google the model# you can find if a whisk is available for it. I found a parts store online charging about half for brand new what resellers on ebay wanted for the same item used.

Jul 10, 2014
RelishPDX in Home Cooking

FN quest for ratings: we are more likely to see Giada De Laurentiis or Bobby Flay cooking “ethnic foods” than we are to see a brown person cooking them.

«I think it's fair to challenge a for-profit company to think beyond immediate profits (i.e. invest in some unknown raw minority talent) for long term potential/profits.»

Doesn't FN already do that with the Next FN Star? It's open for anyone to apply for, and most of all, if you lack the basic talent as a bankable personality, you can sure as heck learn a LOT about what you'll need from watching and studying the program. It's almost like a university on the air for how to host a successful cooking show.

Yeah, everyone needs a break somewhere in life, someone to take a chance on them and give them a start, but there's a lot to be said about preparing yourself to be selected for that break as well.

It was pretty savvy of FN to monetize that process for their benefit—turning a learning experience into something that would attract an audience in itself.

I believe in benevolence as much as the next guy, and believe it's an essential part of maintaining a healthy society, but we also have to realize that not everyone is qualified for every job right out of the gate, nor is there a market for every niche.

Jul 10, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News

FN quest for ratings: we are more likely to see Giada De Laurentiis or Bobby Flay cooking “ethnic foods” than we are to see a brown person cooking them.

The way I read it was that the Salon author took cultural cannibalism as inevitable, so we should aspire to make it as inclusive as possible.

It's just that she's expecting for-profit companies to be out there putting aside profits to do so. Therein lies the quandary, if FN wasn't successful in getting food awareness in front of the public by making it into a profitable venture, would cultural cannibalism as she defined it even be an issue?

Look at how the selections in our supermarkets changed nearly overnight as show after show on FN introduced new foods and techniques. But without bankable presenters, it wouldn't have gotten off the ground.

Jul 09, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News

FN quest for ratings: we are more likely to see Giada De Laurentiis or Bobby Flay cooking “ethnic foods” than we are to see a brown person cooking them.

«We can interpret to degrees, but unless someone shows me a pure definition of what a cultural cannibal is - the conclusion, it's all speculation.»

I've always casually interpreted cultural cannibalism as a fancy way to express the idea of fusion in this context, as in one culture's food habits taking on another's, such as the ever-popular asian fusion movement. Thinking about it, I also believe that it can represent the popular desires of one culture wanting to incorporate features of another culture into their own. An example of the latter could be represented by street food transforming into regional replicas of the American fast food formula. That goes both ways—I believe that the food truck movement replicates hawker food centers in a way, too.

Then I googled the term. It happens to be a fairly useful term first defined in Brazil nearly 100 years ago:

http://www.npr.org/2012/02/22/1471981...

Jul 09, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News

Uses for Maggi Seasoning

Continuing to experiment, last night I made meatballs and decided to add some Maggi. I started out with 2 lbs. of beef + a panade, eggs, and seasonings. I took about ¼ cup of the finished mixture out, split it in half, added a few drops of Maggi to one portion, then fried them both up in a skillet for tasting.

The one with the Maggi had a sharpness/brightness of flavor that the unadulterated sample lacked.

Not knowing how much to add overall, I split the remaining batch in half and added 1 tbsp. of Maggi liquid to one, ½ tbsp. to the other.

After baking, the batch with the full tbsp. both smelled and tasted like something had been added. Now knowing what Maggi tastes like, after the rice test, I could clearly identify the Maggi coming through. The one with ½ tbsp. per pound of meat resembled what I'd tasted in the mini-test, just a pleasant added brightness to the food.

What's interesting is that after I let the meatballs with the higher amount of Maggi simmer in a basic marinara sauce for a while, the "Maggi taste" seemed to dissipate a bit into the sauce, so the batch with the higher amount didn't seem to taste as Maggi'd.

The recipe I used, adjusted for what I believe to be the correct amount of Maggi, if anyone's interested:

Maggi Meatballs

Combine and set aside to fully absorb to create a 'panade':
4 English Muffins, ground to crumbs
1½ C milk

Mix together:
2 lbs. of 80/20 ground beef (or combination of your choice)
4 large eggs
½ C grated Parmesan cheese
1 lg. onion, pulverized to onion mush in a food processor

Stir thoroughly at this point to break up the meat, adding the prepared panade as you stir.

Then add:
½ bunch of Italian parsley, finely chopped (roughly de-stemmed first)
1 tbsp. Italian seasoning
1½ tsp. ground black pepper
1½ tsp. Lawry's seasoned salt
1 tsp. crushed garlic
1 tbsp. Maggi liquid

Mix together thoroughly. Scoop out meatballs using a ¼ cup measure, and either pan-fry or bake at 325° for 30 minutes.

Makes about 28 meatballs.

Feedback welcomed as always.

Bon appétit!

Jul 09, 2014
RelishPDX in Home Cooking

Palatable frozen foods

I had the InnovAsian version of Beef & Broccoli with Noodles last night, a freebie from Safeway as a promotion this week on my club card. Regular price: $6.99.

The reviews I read online on this product were sort of okay, but all seemed to reference an 18oz. size. The box I picked up weighed 16oz.

This isn't anything I'd buy again, especially for $7. The nutrition panel said it contained 3 servings at 200 calories each, but there was barely enough inside the box to fill a normal-sized dinner plate with a reasonable serving. I'm not a huge eater overall, and had both breakfast and lunch yesterday (though not huge portions for either), but I was still hungry after I finished eating all three "portions".

Jul 09, 2014
RelishPDX in General Topics

FN quest for ratings: we are more likely to see Giada De Laurentiis or Bobby Flay cooking “ethnic foods” than we are to see a brown person cooking them.

«Her perspective had nothing to do with "Only X have the authority to comment on X-related food".»

I could be wrong, but I do believe that's exactly what she's advocating.

Again quoting from the article:

«And herein lies the conundrum. In all things, race continues to matter. Even how we cook.»

Her closing paragraph and conclusion:

«The old adage is true. We are what we eat. This is what makes us animals. And simultaneously cultural cannibals. But as nations go, we should aspire to be more than this. And this starts with caring a little less about the food we eat and far more about the livelihoods and possibilities of those who have prepared it.»

What the author seems to be advocating is that regardless of their immediate popularity and resulting bump in ratings from known celebrity cooks preparing dishes from whatever source or culture, FN should be developing personalities more closely related racially with the food being prepared.

Is that FN's responsibility? Noble cause, yes, sustainable, who knows.

Jul 09, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News

FN quest for ratings: we are more likely to see Giada De Laurentiis or Bobby Flay cooking “ethnic foods” than we are to see a brown person cooking them.

Perhaps my post was misunderstood, as I wasn't advocating anyone waving anything in anyone's face.

The rhetorical part of my question addressed the POV of the author of the piece in Salon that the color of the host should resemble the origin or appeal of the food presented.

The author even claims that "... it is an egregious oversight on the part of the higher-ups at Food Network to feed us a steady diet of TV shows hosted by heterosexual white men and Southern white ladies."

I particularly looked at the sentence, "I slowly started to come around to the idea that perhaps I should not give so much time and money to a network that clearly didn’t think black people cooked," with a blank stare.

Those are pretty strong words and ideas to present. 'Egregious' means "shocking, appalling, atrocious, outrageous, abhorrent", etc. Is that POV valid?

One of the most acclaimed Thai restaurants in the U.S. was founded by a middle-aged heterosexual white guy, Andy Ricker. Is that egregious? Was it egregious for Anthony Bourdain to have Andy host his recent trip to Thailand to present Thai food, instead of a "real Thai person"?

I asked what I asked in my post because I didn't see any replies which addressed the author's POV or the OP's comment that they weren't sure they disagreed. Some of the replies did point out that the Cooking Channel had more "diversity" if that's what one desired, but nothing directly challenging the point the author was attempting to make.

Jul 09, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News

FN quest for ratings: we are more likely to see Giada De Laurentiis or Bobby Flay cooking “ethnic foods” than we are to see a brown person cooking them.

How many LGBT hosts have shows on Food Network? How many of retirement age or beyond?

The article partially opens up a Pandora's Box. It's perfectly okay to pander to your audience which drives ratings and advertising dollars, as long as it isn't done in a way which is discriminatory.

There's absolutely nothing holding back anyone of any sex, creed, color, age or sexual preference from entering the Next Food Network Star competition and proving their talents and audience appeal which are worthy to have a show of their own.

Paula Deen began her TV career as a shy middle-aged woman on the old Doorknock Dinners show. Had someone else struck a chord with viewers, and had a marketable cooking POV, I'm absolutely positive that Gordon Elliott would have been all over them to sign them onto a contract with his production company.

Jul 09, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News

Dishes that look better than they taste?

This morning I re-opened the article to read the comments (which there were very few—I was surprised), and the 'trout mess' photo appeared in it today (for some reason it wasn't loading last night, a point even noted in the comments, so it wasn't just me not seeing it).

The article reads a bit differently with the trout mess photo, which has changed how I would have commented a bit.

Yes, I appreciate the time a kitchen spends to make a dish look «appetizing», as in how it should look, as long as the dish doesn't suffer due to over-fussiness.

I don't want to change the thrust of this thread, as I have respect for the OP's question. But since the piece which prompted the question has changed a bit between last night and this morning, I wanted to add my additional thoughts.

Jul 09, 2014
RelishPDX in Manhattan

Dishes that look better than they taste?

You know, after reading that article, I'd have absolutely no guilt over sending many of those dishes back for having gotten cold while the chef wasted his time making the food I paid for look pretty in hopes that I'd give him free advertising.

Jul 08, 2014
RelishPDX in Manhattan
1

WashPost declares end of gluten-free fad

I'd never heard of Skinny Pop before, so I did an image search on Google.

I see "Zero Trans Fats", "Cholesterol Free", and "Indulge Guilt Free" plastered in big circles on the front of the bags. Gluten-free is in a list of 10 other items besides "Delicious!" on the back of the bag. Looks like simple marketing to me.

Jul 08, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News

WashPost declares end of gluten-free fad

Why would Skinny Pop be one of your gauges? There may be a huge number of people who are looking for GF products who don't know if one packaged popcorn vs. another is dusted with something like a seasoning which contains gluten.

Jul 08, 2014
RelishPDX in Food Media & News