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A cat pancake I made for my son

Fried rice always sticks

I'd say if sticking and burning is the problem, you'd want to lower the temp and add more oil. Maybe the pan is too hot if it's burning that fast? Try starting at a medium temp instead, and letting the pan get fully hot from that setting. Also, I think you need more oil, depending on how much rice you are using/how big your pan is. I've never tried this, but what about adding some oil to the cold rice and coating the grains lightly before cooking. Once you add the well oiled rice to well oiled hot pan, try leaving it alone for a bit before trying to move it around in the pan. I haven't used refined coconut oil for stir frying, does it have a high smoke point?

Interesting ideas for leftover cheese sauce?

Use as a baked potato topping, or a sauce for potatoes au gratin or mac and cheese, or serve over vegetables like broccoli or cauliflower.

Jan 18, 2015
RachelJ in Home Cooking

Favorite "Seasoning Salt"? Is This Regional?

I'm from Oregon, and grew up using Johnny's Seafood Seasoning (now called Lemon Dill Seasoning), although not the seasoning salt.

Jan 17, 2015
RachelJ in General Topics

Master Shopping List

Sorry, I was feeling snarky. I definitely understand the need for local honey, I don't buy anything but. I get mine from the farmers market. I just don't write "local honey" or "farm eggs" on my list because if it's my list I obviously know what I want. I'm not going to buy Sue Bee from the grocery store if I don't write local down. I can understand wanting to be specific if someone else is doing your shopping. To me, it just came off as pretentious, and I was in a mood to call it out. I apologize.

How to convince wife to go to TJ

My first thought was, why would you have to convince your wife to go to Trader Joes ? :)

Jan 17, 2015
RachelJ in San Diego

Master Shopping List

This is a strange post, to me. It kind of comes across as you showing off your exotic/fancy/pretentious taste in food. I mean, who knows what you want? Did you forget anything, is that really the question? Ok, what about oatmeal, cereal, crackers, cheese, bacon, lentils, split peas, canned tuna, pasta? I could put a million things for you to add, but I don't know you or what you do or don't like.

Master Shopping List

I have a pad and pen in the kitchen, and we just write down things as we run out throughout the week. I usually think of some things I want to cook during the week and buy what I need. I do the big grocery shop on Saturday morning, but usually make a few other trips to get last minute items. As for what the OP would want, I have no idea. Your list seems pretty extensive, and quite different from mine. For me, things like canned beans and ketchup wouldn't be on a "master list" because how often do you need to buy stuff like that? I get cases of beans at Costco and ketchup lasts about 9 months around here. I just add it to my list when we get down to the last few cans, etc. Not to mention the fact that I personally don't want the same things every time I go to the store. Seems kind of limiting.
I guess I'm missing the point of a master list?
Do you take this whole big list around to the store(s) with you when you just need a few of the items?

Jan 16, 2015
RachelJ in General Topics

How many people really use shallots? I generally don't.

I love them, so I grow them in the summer. After harvest, cure (dry) them on the covered patio for 2 weeks, and store them hanging in paper bags with holes punched in them in my laundry room. They lasted us this year until Thanksgiving, which was wonderful., but next year I'm growing more! I agree that they are too expensive at the store and I have had the problem several times with them being moldy in the center. I think they sit too long at the store.

Jan 16, 2015
RachelJ in Home Cooking

Moldy pasta sauce, help

I make many gallons of marinara every summer and freeze them flat in plastic bags like this. It saves so much space in the freezer. I do apple and plum sauce this way also. No freezer burn from air space at the top of a container to worry about.

Jan 15, 2015
RachelJ in General Topics

White fish is BLAND. What to do?

That sound so good! Thanks for sharing.

Jan 15, 2015
RachelJ in Home Cooking

White fish is BLAND. What to do?

Butter. You don't need half a stick, a little goes a long way. Salted butter plus olive oil is good. Salt and pepper, or a simple seasoning of choice. I like Penzey's Mural of Flavor or Johnny's Lemon Dill seasoning, but just a little. I think sometimes one can do too much and then it doesn't taste like fish anymore. I want my fish enhanced, not disguised. Simple is good.

Eta: I just realized this thread was originally from 2010.

Jan 15, 2015
RachelJ in Home Cooking

Moldy pasta sauce, help

I once got food poisoning from eating jarred pasta sauce that was about 5 days old. Now I freeze any that I have leftover right away if I'm not going to eat it the next day. Food poisoning has a way of making one very cautious! It's not supposed to last that long once opened. Use it, freeze it, or lose it.

Jan 15, 2015
RachelJ in General Topics

DQ that serves burgers?

Dairy Queen in Portland, OR has burgers, chicken strips, grilled cheese, plus all the other stuff.

Eta: Sorry, I missed the New Jersey part. I guess I just got excited about Dairy Queen :)

What to put on rice?

I like roasted vegetables (my favorites:Mushrooms, green beans, carrots, peppers, cauliflower) and sauteed onion over rice with grated parmesan on top.

Another favorite is Risi e Bisi (rice and peas)-rice cooked in chicken stock or broth with peas and parmesan.

We always seem to have leftover rice after a meal, so I often microwave it with salsa and grated cheddar for a quick lunch.

Butter and soy sauce is pure comfort food to me. Yum, now I want some.

Jan 09, 2015
RachelJ in Home Cooking

what do you put on your cottage cheese?

I like pepper in mine. The sunflower seeds are a great idea. My son likes a spoonful of jam mixed in, kind of like a blintz filling without the crepe. He also enjoys a fresh pear diced in cottage cheese for breakfast. My mom eats cottage cheese with chopped cucumber, tomato and shredded carrot for lunch sometimes. And thousand island dressing (I kind of gag at that part).

Jan 09, 2015
RachelJ in General Topics

Simple Good Things

Apple slices with peanut butter

Scrambled eggs with sauteed mushrooms

Cheese melted on toast

My "Turkish Breakfast" : A plate of olives, almonds, any good cheese, cucumbers and tomatoes (preferably in the summer, fresh from the garden)

Ripe garden tomato sandwich on toast ( I like a chewy crusted sourdough wheat), also a summer treat

Looking at this list, I realize these are all things I eat for breakfast.

Jan 06, 2015
RachelJ in General Topics

can you make an avocado soup with lime juice three days ahead?

Right off the bat I would say no, it would probably taste better fresh. I think the lime would be too strong by then. But if you really want to know, I would recommend making a small batch and letting it sit 3 days, then trying it to see if it's any good. You never know, it could be ok or it could be awful. I realize this answer is a bit late, but I think it's a good practice to try things like that out ahead before serving to guests.

Dec 11, 2014
RachelJ in Home Cooking

What are your stovetop oatmeal tricks?

I like to make oatmeal with raisins added to the pot and cooked all together. They get all plump and juicy, and it sweetens up whatever cooking liquid you use, just a bit. I always add a pinch of salt when cooking oatmeal, not so it tastes salty, just more flavorful and balanced. I personally like cinnamon in my oatmeal, milk and maybe a little butter.

Dec 11, 2014
RachelJ in Home Cooking

Good eats around NW Vaughn St, travelling with a toddler.

I find it very easy to get around without a car. I've lived here my whole life (37 years) and I have never had a car. I take public transportation (bus, MAX train, streetcar) everywhere, to all parts of the city. The Pearl district is easily accessed by the streetcar, and it does a loop through the city from SW to NW, across the river to NE and SE. All the MAX trains, busses and streetcars are wheelchair accessible. I love Portland and highly recommend it as a car free place to live!

Dec 01, 2014
RachelJ in Metro Portland

Latke sandwiches in Food Network Magazine

Fried egg, maybe with caramelized onions, would be good. I like the lox idea, too.
It's an interesting idea. I like to fry latkes ahead of time and reheat them in the oven so they are really crisp and not greasy at all. I think they would hold up well for the sandwich idea better this way, rather than straight frying and serving with stuff on them.

Nov 29, 2014
RachelJ in Kosher

Good eats around NW Vaughn St, travelling with a toddler.

Here are some places that hit the mark, price -wise, in NW Portland:

23 Hoyt
Ken's Artisan Bakery (Snack or pastry)
Meriwether's Restaurant and Skyline Farm (actually on Vaughn)
Cafe Nell
St. Honore Boulangerie

Not sure how they would be with a toddler, but check them out and see what you think.
Have fun in Portland, and try not to drive unless you have to get to another part of town. NW is nice to see on foot.

Nov 27, 2014
RachelJ in Metro Portland

Pumpkin Pie: What's your dairy of choice?

I use sweetened condensed milk instead of evaporated milk and granulated sugar. I've tried both, and found the pie to be much creamier with the former. Simple and delicious.

Famous food in names- add to the list

Paul Reubens
John Hamm
Rye Cooder
Sir Francis Bacon
Blind Melon
Sean Bean
Jack Lemon
Jello Biafra
Peaches Geldof
Alan Partridge
Black Eyed Peas
Smashing Pumpkins
Marc Almond
String Cheese Incident
(this is fun!)

Nov 14, 2014
RachelJ in Not About Food

Famous food in names- add to the list

Band names:
Hot Chip
Iron and Wine
Neutral Milk Hotel
Papas Fritas
The Moldy Peaches
Fruit Bats
Pearl Jam
Red Hot Chili Peppers
The Sugarcubes

Nov 14, 2014
RachelJ in Not About Food

Is it depressing to dine out on Thanksgiving?

I would find it depressing, because I love to cook (and eat) Thanksgiving dinner. It is one of my favorite meals to cook, and I look forward to it all year. I would miss my special stuffing, my favorite turkey which I have perfected, and most of all, getting up in the morning and starting the pies and desserts with my 7 year old son. Every year he is able to do more, and he looks forward to it as much as I do. I am fortunate to be able to spend Thanksgiving with family and friends that I love and enjoy. If I was alone, or didn't have a group to feed that I liked, I wouldn't mind eating in a restaurant. I would appreciate it. But I would still miss cooking. And leftovers!

Oct 24, 2014
RachelJ in General Topics

Goat cheese haters?

I like this thread. I feel like i'm not alone in my dislike of goat cheese. It seems that everyone around me loves it, including my 7 year old son. I'll never forget the first time I tasted it. My cousin put it in a lovely appetizer he made for a party. I took a nice big bite because, why not, I love cheese, it's one of my staple foods. I was in shock! I could not believe how bad it was, and everyone else was rhapsodizing about it...I think my eyes were bugging out of my head. I didn't say anything because everyone else loved it. I always think of it as "tastes like a petting zoo smells". But I did try it again, once. My son loves to try samples of various fresh and local goat cheeses at the farmers market, so I thought- what the hell, maybe last time was just a bad one. Nope, disgusting.

Oct 24, 2014
RachelJ in Cheese

Once I tasted ___ from a farmer's market, I could never go back to the grocery version.

Locally caught and smoked salmon
Peaches and nectarines

Oct 18, 2014
RachelJ in General Topics

Lunch in Gloucester

Virgilio's for wonderful sandwiches and Seaport Grille for lobster rolls and a view of the harbor.

Oct 15, 2014
RachelJ in Greater Boston Area

music to chowhound by

Honey Pie, Strawberry Fields Forever, Savoy Truffle-The Beatles
Blueberry Hill-Fats Domino
Tequilla Sunrise-The Eagles
Tangerine-Led Zeppelin
Rock Lobster-B52's
Tupelo Honey-Van Morrison

Aug 08, 2014
RachelJ in Not About Food