Skippy1414's Profile

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Columbia Student with foodie aspirations

There's also a Xi'an on Broadway and 102nd.

Feb 23, 2015
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Question about Cinnamon Rolls

Just for future reference, if a recipe calls for instant or rapid rise yeast, it usually specifies that. Also, you can tell by the recipe--active yeast needs to be dissolved in a liquid before it is added (as in this recipe) while instant does not. They're pretty interchangeable, though. If a recipe has instructions for instant and I only have active, then I just add it to whichever liquid is used in the recipe first and if I only have instant, I put it in directly with the dry ingredients.

Feb 08, 2015
Skippy1414 in Home Cooking

Where to buy cake or pastry flour?

I often see cake flour in regular supermarkets. It's usually in a box (Softasilk or Swan's Down brand), not a bag, so keep an eye out for a box.

I thought Whole Foods had pastry flour, if not their own brand, then King Arthur.

And finally, if nothing else, try NY Cake on W 22nd, off 6th Ave.

(Oh, and I make puff pastry using AP flour--never had a problem with it being too tough.)

Feb 07, 2015
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Cakes. Where to begin?

King Arthur Flour has a gluten free section:

They're also really good about responding to questions.

Feb 04, 2015
Skippy1414 in Home Cooking

Help With Bread Recipe

I know what you mean--I'm not getting a stand mixer unless the KitchenAid fairy comes to visit. But you really don't need one to make bread.

I looked at your recipe and while I'm certainly not a challah expert, I have to say that 5 cups of sugar seems like an awful lot of sugar...that's more than flour. Is that a typo?

Here are two pretzel recipes I've tried--they're not bread machine specific, but maybe you can adapt them. Or pretzels are really easy and forgiving if you want to try them just as they are:

Jan 19, 2015
Skippy1414 in Home Cooking

Nut free bakery

Babycakes is vegan and gluten free, and here's what they say about nuts:

"We do not bake with nuts* or soy; however, all of our gluten free flours are processed on equipment that packages hazelnut, almond flours and soy. They power wash the machinery and discard the initial 30 pounds of flour between runs."

So if that works for you...

Jan 17, 2015
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Aux Merveilleux de Fred – Heavenly Meringue Pastries

I think you have very lucky neighbors--

Jan 11, 2015
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Party sides and nibbles--hot and bored!

I've done mini unfrosted cupcakes with a bowl of frosting for dipping. People really liked it. The German Chocolate brownies are also a good idea.

Jan 08, 2015
Skippy1414 in Home Cooking

Cooking Resolutions

I've failed at every attempt to make a sourdough starter, but yes, I'll try that again this year. And I'll push myself to try canning this year.

Dec 31, 2014
Skippy1414 in Home Cooking

What did you/would you eat the morning of your wedding?

No, I didn't get that impression at all. She sounds fine.

I agree with either her usual breakfast or the previously suggested smoothie. She can sip on that periodically if she's nervous or if (as someone else noted) she's just too busy for a sit down breakfast.

Dec 19, 2014
Skippy1414 in General Topics

Holiday Reads to Give & Get for Chowhounds

Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking, by Anya von Bremzen

Dec 17, 2014
Skippy1414 in Food Media & News

Moving to 129th and Lenox-and I'm vegetarian...

Not really the type of answer you're looking for, but you do know that there's a Whole Foods opening on 125th, I think near Lenox? For the times when you are cooking--

Also, I'm not quite as north as you, but Frederick Douglass Blvd./8th Ave is always sprouting restaurants. You might want to just wander over in that direction to take a look around and see if there's any hidden or new gems. (Actually, I should probably do that too!)

Dec 15, 2014
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Defontes gone?

Ha, my landlord tried to increase our rent by $1000. I negotiated it down to "only" $800, but got them to lock that rate for two years. There is no one as self destructively greedy as a NYC landlord.

Dec 08, 2014
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Un-hip Dad

Have you or your wife read her blog to see if she talks about any place she'd like to go to or is interested in? Or any of the places she's been that might give clues about where she would like to go?

Of course if it were me, I'd just as soon get a nonspecific gift card, like AMEX or Visa card; you could give a card with it that says something about it being for a night at a restaurant of her choice. Sure, that means she might end up using it for something else instead, but if she does, well, then that tells you there was something she wanted more than a visit to a fancy restaurant.

Dec 07, 2014
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Please give your recommended recipes that use unsweetened chocolate - thank you!

Here's another hot fudge sauce recipe that uses unsweetened chocolate:

Dec 06, 2014
Skippy1414 in Home Cooking

Latin American Desserts?

I just saw an ad for a place called Brigadeiro Bakery, a shop that specializes in (unsurprisingly) the Brazilian candy Brigadeiros.

Or you can easily make Brigadeiros--your son could help too. They're very simple, like the world's easiest truffle.

Dec 04, 2014
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

How can we say no to a dinner invitation? We don't want to appear ungracious even though we don't really like the boyfriend!

You hope that they've broken up by then.

Dec 01, 2014
Skippy1414 in Not About Food

Where can I find great PIEROGIES in Manhattan??

My mom is Polish and it's one of the wonders of the world that I am vegetarian because she only had one way of cooking vegetables: boil until unbearably mushy. I think that's why she doesn't understand why anyone wants to eat vegetables at all, let alone eat them full time, because she believes they're supposed to be tasteless with the consistency of a pile of wet napkins. The only reason her beets were passable was because she used my Swedish dad's family's recipe.

(And that was $3200/month for a studio less than 500 sf--rental prices are overall appalling, but you can find some slightly better deals in the low 100s and the UES...)

Nov 28, 2014
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Has anyone tried the chocolate chip cookie recipe posted on Serious Eats?

I spent a lot of time testing out chocolate chip cookie recipes last year but didn't try a bread flour version. I did try the Serious Eats recipe early last year, but had to make some last minute swaps for a few ingredients (didn't have some things that I thought I had...it was not my finest day for planning). That meant I didn't get a clear read on it.

I moved on to other recipes in a search to find the perfect thin chewy cookie and found the Joy the Baker one as posted on the King Arthur site. The person I make cookies for thought these were perfect.

The only real change I make is that I brown all the butter, not just half. Then I do borrow the Serious Eats idea of throwing in an ice cube or two to make up for any water that evaporated. I don't know if it makes a huge difference, but it hasn't seemed to hurt the outcome (I'm sure there will come a day when I forget to do it and I'll find out if it is important). Also, my baking times are also usually a few minutes less than stated in the recipe, but that may just be because my oven can be a little wonky.

Anyway, that's my current favorite, so if you're looking for thin and chewy, give it a try.

Nov 27, 2014
Skippy1414 in Home Cooking

Where can I find great PIEROGIES in Manhattan??

I always pictured Eastern European vegetarian menus as "potato....cabbage...potato and cabbage."

(Just FYI, there is availability at Mercedes House--studios start at about $3200, so it's not a place to bargain hunt...)

Nov 27, 2014
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Moving to 105 and Broadway - Whats good up there?

I've been on 108th St for four years after more than a decade in the West 80s. We loved that area but this is even better. I think it's an underrated neighborhood.

Nov 18, 2014
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Logistical help needed for bring a meal to friend

If you use several smaller containers, then they will also have more flexibility for fitting them into the fridge or freezer than one big one--they can stack them or put them in different corners, etc.

Nov 16, 2014
Skippy1414 in Home Cooking

Baked ( Tribeca)

I'm a a fan of their books--

Nov 16, 2014
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Solo dining spots with social opportunities (20s-30s)?

Not exactly what you asked for, but would you consider a cooking class, or wine course/tasting? That might be a good way to meet like-minded people. Just a thought--

Nov 13, 2014
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

need a super light waffle recipe

It's my all-time favorite waffle recipe and really easy once you work out the timing to fit your schedule. I used to make it for my family for Christmas breakfast when I was in high school.

Nov 09, 2014
Skippy1414 in Home Cooking

Best of the UWS, 2014 Edition

I've wondered too. I would swear that sign has been up since last winter.

Oct 31, 2014
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Live From Piedmont

At first glance I thought you wrote that the dessert reminded you of the ending of Breaking Bad. And I thought, hmmmm, maybe I wouldn't order that...

Oct 27, 2014
Skippy1414 in Italy

4 days in Manhattan, running NYC Marathon!

I agree with dyrewolf, I'd keep my plans loose for Sunday night, because you don't know how you're going to feel. I always had trouble eating anything after the marathon, let alone be in the mood to go out and have a full sit down dinner. I'd make sure I had something on hand in my hotel room or collect some take out ideas if you want to stay in and names of places that don't need reservations if you feel like going out.

Oh, and yes, also agree--Staten Island in the morning is freezing (probably more so if you're used to Miami) so wear some layers of throw away clothes to start.

Oct 20, 2014
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

36 hours in the city...

Here's a really helpful website for the subway:

I think they have an iphone app--

EDIT: And I just saw Kathryn's note about the iphone app not being worthwhile anymore. So...never mind.

Oct 14, 2014
Skippy1414 in Manhattan

Prices for Butter?

Yes, I've found that Trader Joe's ($3.79/pound, I think) and Whole Foods ($3.49/pound) have the best prices for butter in NYC. Most grocery stores are close to $4.99/pound for national brands. I bake a lot for friends and family so I'm always on the lookout for a good butter deal.

Oct 14, 2014
Skippy1414 in General Topics