chrisjuricich's Profile

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2014 Best Indian Buffet Oakland/Berkeley Area?

Second that. Was a go to place for me, but it seemed that the menu or the buffet never changed and I got bored with it .

We Got a Stunning Glimpse of Flour + Water's New Pasta Book

Probably the calories the writer may be concerned about.

Oct 06, 2014
chrisjuricich in Features

Berkeley: Casa Latina - nice nacatamales - tamal-rific

Yah, I see those signs all along 'Sign Pablo'. The Spanish Table put one up briefly but the authorities told them to take it down, I recall. Yet so many remain.

Dangerous? Distracting? No comprendo that, nowadays there is so much to distract a driver as it stands (legitimate signage, great looking bare legs, cool cars, radio, texting) what's one more piece of a chalkboard?

Berkeley: Casa Latina - nice nacatamales - tamal-rific

Big fan of Casa Latina for their tacos, etc. Very reasonably priced and open late for those interested to know. I'm not a particular fan of this dish, just...prefer others. The shop only recently expanded into the space next door for mores eating and possible evening entertainment (I think there is a small, elevated stage area toward the rear).

I don't believe there is a new owner, just the man they call 'Jefe' who wears a black cap. When we got less enamoured with Spoonrocket, we found their tacos a perfect quick dinner...and cheaper and tastier than Spoonrocket as well.

What went down at Montero's? [Albany]

Damn shame, we found their food quite good. The group also owns La Mission on University as well as one other a couple of blocks up, between Acton and Sacramento.

The Turducken of Cheese Balls

An example of excess so typical in today's world of cuisine where combining, doing fusion, and mixing foods together simply beCAUSE shows what's wrong with this culture. Of course, what's 'wrong' is excess. While an intriguing culinary challenge for the chef or cook making this, I can't imagine wanting to eat it.

Jan 08, 2014
chrisjuricich in Recipes

Why cooks are leaving SF?

Of course it's not just chefs--everyone is feeling the crunch. My wife and I plan to retire to the Philippines eventually where our 'mighty dollar' will carry us through to doddering senility--otherwise, it's stay here in the Bay Area and work till we are in our late 60s.

Lessee...tropical lifestyle, cheap housing and food, easy access to travel in Asia, and actually some nice restaurants that aren't an arm and a leg...OR...continue working 40 hours a week for another 10 years? Hmmm....

Disappointing Christmas dinner at Chef's Wok [Alameda]

Tough, that. I wasn't aware that Chow reviewed restaurants, though I shouldn't be surprised. It's usually yelp I hit for reviews.

Good to know that the food wasn't awful and it was the lousy service...poor English skills?

Baked Eggs in Stuffing Cups

I'm an idiot. Bought some dry stuffing mix, mixed with cheddar, and baked. I looked at this and thought--no, this is a lousy recipe, what were they thinking? 5 minutes into the baking, a quick acrid smell of burnt bread stuffing, and my first ah ha moment.

Use stuffing already cooked and drenched and sticky from turkey juices. Du-uh!

Nov 28, 2013
chrisjuricich in Recipes


Zachary's is good. My least favorite is the oil-soaked crust of Cheese Board.

Homemade Mozz...w/o rennet, et al?

I read recently where a significant percentage of 'vegetarian rennet' is a genetically modified organism which, after the chemical magic is performed, provides 'vegetarian' rennet.

Alas, the SOURCE of the materials used in veg rennet continue to be from slaughtered calves, so...depending on your view, while vegetarian rennet through microbial science and process may no longer actually contain material from a dead calf's fourth stomach, it was used to source it.

Maybe there are other sources for vegetarian rennet?

Jun 26, 2013
chrisjuricich in Cheese

Sweet, large, $.79 mangoes at Mi Tierra Market, 2023 Mission (16th st) [San Francisco]

Hope their Berkeley store (same outfit?) has these

Make Potato Chips in the Microwave

I am eternally skeptical. I am not so fascinated by 'healthy' potato chips to work out a method to get them crispy and tasty without frying, but every method or device I've seen for use in the microwave has proven a bust,

Thin mandoline slices, yes. Dried of moisture? Yes. Add salt and a drop if oil? Sure,

Epic fail every time, so you know, eat the damn chips out of the bag for gods sake,,,just don't pig out.

Mar 21, 2013
chrisjuricich in Features

Pasta e Fagioli

Slacker solution?

SERiously now.

Mar 04, 2013
chrisjuricich in Recipes

Basic Napa Cabbage Kimchi (Kimchee)

Very simple and always tasty results--one of the few things spicy that my wife likes, oddly. The overnight salt soak is a mild bother but not too much, and the results are much more satisfying than buying the stuff--I'll snack on this anytime--but not for three days or so.

Alas, this time the batch came out super salty! Yuck! It's been suggested I add loads of daikon to absorb the salt in there--it's worth a try, I suppose,

Jan 08, 2013
chrisjuricich in Recipes

Ippuku - Izakaya in Berkeley

My wife and I ate there once...earlier in its incarnation and felt there were hits and misses, but worth returning for another try.

Unfortunately, I have spent many an evening at izakayas in Tokyo when I lived there and, while prices may have gone up somewhat in the intervening few years, the bottom line is that izakayas are bar food with very little pretentiousness--and usually cheap. I mean...cheap such that college students visit there to stretch their yen. Given that sensibility, wadr to the fine folks at Ippuku, its hard for me to rationalize paying the chichi prices.

Yeah, it's MY issue I realize, and for the same reason I don't order paella or Spanish potato torta...I can make it as well at home rather than blow money at Barlata's.

Still, one fine day I shall return...if only for a good Asahi.

Got dry falafel mix, need instructions

Yeah, great idea...broiling them. Seems to be working--so saves on the extra oil and fat and trouble. Moreover, my wife isn't a big falafel fan so since I'm the cook and I'm home alone...put together a yogurt cuke sauce, cut some toms and a bit of avocado...toasted pita...yeah...

Dec 13, 2012
chrisjuricich in Home Cooking

Nostalgia for Old-School Parm

I work in a wine and cheese shop--thinking it would be a good practical joke to put a can of tht stuff in the cheese case. See what folks do!

Aug 23, 2012
chrisjuricich in Features

What are you baking these days? July, 2012 [old]

Made scones for breakfast the other day, but no half n half so I had to use chocolate soymilk with fresh blueberries. A little too crisp on the bottom but otherwise eminently palatable.

Made three Tarta de Santiago flourless almond cakes last night.

Jul 02, 2012
chrisjuricich in Home Cooking

Vinegar on Fries...a dying tradition

This term...cultural imperialism definitely seems to have a negative connotation to this particular poster, but he is certainly correct when he makes the statement: American food, movies, etc certainly get more play overseas than our physical products. Americans, however, are used to in large part the immense cultural diversity that is imbued onto the country from all over the world. It's nice to have so many different cuisines to select from.

McDonald's notwithstanding.

Jul 02, 2012
chrisjuricich in General Topics

Vinegar on Fries...a dying tradition

Typically I've only seen it when served fish and chips--but I see no reason why one couldn't try it sans fish.

Jul 02, 2012
chrisjuricich in General Topics

What are you baking these days? June 2012, part deux! [old]

Lately due to wifely requests, I've been making Tarta de Santiago, though a flourless version whose only ingredients are eggs, sugar, almonds, lemon peel...and wait! That's it. Uniformly light and fluffy, it always hits the spot. Best recipe online comes from La Tienda.

Jul 02, 2012
chrisjuricich in Home Cooking

Blacked Out in Tokyo: Richie Nakano's Japan Chronicles, Part 1

U r 2 cool, Richie. I lived in Tokyo for nearly 4 years and your vexation with the subway is amusing--but ultimately manageable, the system if you can glue a couple of brain cells together after your drinking bouts on the street there.

Favorite ramen ever was in a little hole in the wall a couple of blocks behind Studio Alta in Shinjuku. Something 'norene' iirc. Will keep your popup in mind when in SF.

Jun 30, 2012
chrisjuricich in Features

Why do no national burger chains have veggie burgers?

Not only is there probably no market, but it's also a basic TASTE thing. If someone makes the choice to be a vegeterarian (ha) I can't imagine them even considering going to Macdonalds in the first place.

I find their food oddly satisfying in memory but always regret it an hour later-- and their fries are delicious but...I generally eschew the place for health reasons.

Cherry Clafoutis (Clafouti)

Works like a charm, though using a piepan works just as well. Also--I make small ramekin sized mini-pies with a very similar recipe.

May 31, 2012
chrisjuricich in Recipes

How to School Yourself in Wine

Yes, of course you can learn. And yes, some have a natural, innate talent for it, predicated on a sensitive palate. Just as with cooking,I don't think I'm naturally talented for it, and my wife's palate is more sensitive to favors, though mine is more open to appreciating a wider variety of favors (don't bother her with varied chilis, blue cheeses, risotto, peppery greens, etc) so I appreciate her input on my cooking results.

Since I began selling wine retail several months ago, my palate and tastes for wine have improved measurably, entirely through familiarity. Long way to go, but the key is fearlessness in trying NEW favors,be it food or wine.

You CAN learn.

May 31, 2012
chrisjuricich in Features

What Do You Eat When No One Is Looking?

My secret snack when my wife wasn't around was putting chocolate drops into a peanut butter jar and then eating with a spoon. Or better yet, putting a peanut butter laden spoon into a bag of chocolate chips-- eat,repeat.

When making recipes with anchovies,there are usually some left in the tin-- which I eat straight

May 31, 2012
chrisjuricich in Features

Traditional Ethnic Recipes

Pardon my complete ignorance, but while I'm sure that Canada has a national cuisine, my presumption (wrong?) was that given its status as a country of mostly immigrants, much like the states and Australia, the cuisine is characterized primarily by the odd blend of its varied transplanted cultures. Other than the vague 'California cuisine' moniker, there hasn't really ever been much associated with Canadian or US cuisine other than its ubiquitous fast food 'culture'.

So--what is Canadian cuisine characterized by?

Apr 26, 2012
chrisjuricich in Home Cooking

Why Prebake a Tart or Piecrust shell?

Yah, if I'd followed the directions I'd have had an overdone crust for sure. I realize that baking needs to be more exact than not, but even if a recipe isn't followed slavishly, when one has a tad of experience you can, if not break the rules, at least find new rules. If I had a nickel for every popover recipe I've tried that had different amounts of flour to butter to temperature, well...I'd have at least a dozen nickels.

Point is-- pre baking probably makes as much sense to do as not to do, depending on a pie or tart's actual filling. I get the fear of sogginess which is a real concern if using really wet, sloppy fruit.

I have a chocolate hazelnut tart in a pressed chocolate dough that I'd never risk NOT prebaking! But in this case, Betty Crocker must have been smiling on me.

Come on over for a slice!

Apr 24, 2012
chrisjuricich in Home Cooking

Why Prebake a Tart or Piecrust shell?

Yes, that's the one. Actual cooking time was really not much more than 30 minutes as I look at my notes--about 20 at the 425 and the remaining 10-12 minutes at 375.

Apr 24, 2012
chrisjuricich in Home Cooking