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A baking (or cooking) competition question based on American Baking Company

A similar thread here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/894516
Personally, if I can point to a recipe I altered, I'll reference that and note my changes, if I haven't been looking at any recipes, then I claim it as my own, but as the thread shows, everyone's got different cutoff points.

Jun 25, 2013
Cinnamonster in Food Media & News

What to make? bake? with some delicous new raw, fresh macadamia nuts

You could always make my favorite type of cookie, white chocolate macadamia nut. Or try roasting/toasting them, I love eating them by the handful that way.

Jun 19, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking
1

"It's Too Big" -- And Other Bizarre Restaurant Complaints

That's actually a very good point, I kind of forgot how some chains go crazy on the cheese and croutons (croutons which may have been doused in extra oil). Still feeling the salads' nutrition facts might include dressing, but I wouldn't that surprised if I was very wrong.

Jun 18, 2013
Cinnamonster in Not About Food

"It's Too Big" -- And Other Bizarre Restaurant Complaints

I hope not, because if it does, I can't imagine a salad having that many calories without any dressing (what would it include?).

I suspect that the listing might include the dressing, since most of the time it seems that a Caesar salad isn't really "unique" without the dressing, and they might just be including it separately, but my assumption(s) can always be incorrect.

Jun 18, 2013
Cinnamonster in Not About Food

"It's Too Big" -- And Other Bizarre Restaurant Complaints

To be fair, calorie counts don't always suggest amount of food (not saying it's healthy to have high calorie meals); if the salad is soaked in dressing it could easily reach high calorie counts, despite being a moderate sized salad. Not saying that The Cheesecake Factory is a healthy option, but a salad there without dressing (or maybe minimal?) might be significantly lower in calories; I've had plenty of low calorie (and sodium) meals that have filled or even stuffed me, but I've also had many high calorie/sodium meals that have either just filled me or left me hungry. (Also, sadly, most chicken at chain restaurants tend to be made with already cooked chicken/other meat, that are loaded with sodium to help preserve them, which only helps inflate the sodium content of the meal.)

Jun 18, 2013
Cinnamonster in Not About Food

What is Pomegranate Essence?

Regarding any confusion that may be lingering, I believe the OP (LuluTheMagnificent) wants to create/recreate the pomegranate balsamic vinegar and was wondering what pomegranate essence is, since it is on the list of ingredients.

As to what pomegranate essence is, I have no idea. My best guess would be a flavoring or maybe some concentrated pomegranate juice?

Jun 14, 2013
Cinnamonster in General Topics

Cakey Cookies

Don't forget the oven (temperature runs hotter/colder) and pan type (dark vs/light, nonstick/not nonstick, airbake/regular, etc.).

Jun 01, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking

non dairy dessert

If you have one of those Misto oil sprayers or maybe an unused spray bottle (like for water), you could try filling that with your preferred oil and using it, that way you'd definitely be soy-free (unless you of course put soy in it to prove me wrong).

May 31, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking

What are you drinking tonight?

I believe the Punt e Mes is supposed to be replacing the Campari here, although I do believe it is a vermouth. It might be a substitution based more on taste than type. However, I could easily be wrong.

May 20, 2013
Cinnamonster in Spirits

Midsummer party menu advice

Love the idea of a potato salad tasting, but as firecooked said, it does seem a bit starchy, so I would not make too much of each of them.
The local corn sounds nice as well, but I would do a moderate brushing with additional butter/olive oil on the side for those who prefer more (I find fresh corn has a better taste and doesn't require as much fat to bring out additional flavor).
Love both baked bean options, and once again in relation to the starch/carby overload, I wouldn't skimp on the mushrooms, although I still like the dish as an option.
A few grilled vegetables and a spinach salad wouldn't be bad either (maybe try kale since it's still kinda big right now?).
Any dessert with fresh fruit or ice cream would be terrific, but the fruit might be easier to handle regarding the refrigeration issue (can probably leave it out a bit longer than ice cream for those who finish earlier or prefer dessert earlier).

Also, I wish I could attend this for just your proven potato salad tasting if nothing else. I hope all goes well!

May 11, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking

jewel dessert ideas?

I might be a bit late here, but I saw this through serious eats and thought it would be perfect:
http://www.1finecookie.com/2013/04/ch...

Apr 29, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking

Breakfast on the go

That would still leave the possibility of a yogurt parfait (made the previous night), coffeecake (unless it's too similar to muffins), toast/bagel options, and fruit if any of those appeal to you.

You could also bake up mini frittatas in a muffin tin either overnight or on the weekend. Also, I recently saw the buzzfeed article on cooking eggs in the microwave, and if you have 2-5 minutes, you could easily make some scrambled eggs or one of the other options mentioned.

http://www.buzzfeed.com/arielknutson/...

Apr 26, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking

Breakfast on the go

Plenty of options, but would you have any limits? i.e. No prep time in the morning, avoiding certain kinds/types of food, etc.

Muffins/quick breads, oatmeal baked in ramekins, coffeecake, doughnuts (baked or fried), smoothies, yogurt parfaits, toast/bagel, or maybe just fruit, and plenty of other things I'm probably forgetting.

Apr 26, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking

Gelatin substitution in wonderful yogurt pudding?

Some kosher gelatin is fish based, others are suitable for vegetarians.
I was actually looking up a substitute for gelatin for a panna cotta on chowhound earlier today and it appears that KoJel is a decent vegetarian gelatin. I haven't tried it out myself (just found out today), but it might be worth looking up (both the one I mentioned and other vegetarian kosher gelatin as well).

Mar 30, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking

Tikka Masala: Home Cooking Dish of the month (March 2013)

Based my recipe off of the same recipe.
Used breasts as well, although I swapped out the cream for a mix of milk and yogurt.
Added cardamom pods to the sauce and swapped out the chile powder for serranos (3 small for a half recipe).

I think the serranos added a slight heat without altering the dish too much.

Also, curious to know how that naan turned out.

Mar 24, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking

Bradley Airport lunch?

Not sure where you are coming from or when, but The Nutmeg Restaurant (http://www.nutmegrestaurant.com/) isn't too bad. It does seem they are more banquet focused now, but last time I stopped by the food wasn't bad (nothing extraordinary, but it was decent and priced alright).

If you're fine with going further away, I'd probably recommend looking into Hartford or West Hartford. Plenty of decent options there.

Mar 08, 2013
Cinnamonster in Southern New England

What food do you long for but can't find/recreate?

That sounds pretty good, sadly mine isn't as interesting.

When I was in college, one of the dining halls had this cook who made the best pancakes I have ever tasted. Large, fluffy (without being too tall), usually filled with chocolate chips, but he'd make them plain if you asked, and at times with blueberries (if they were available). I have still tried to find a pancake that could match or even top that, but to this day I haven't found one. And it's not just the batter that the school used, since there were a few times he was out, and they often had a replacement for him, but theirs tasted nowhere near as good. In recent years, I've begun to lose out on hope that I might experience pancakes of that caliber.

Mar 01, 2013
Cinnamonster in General Topics

Riff on a previous thread...if you could have anything for breakfast, every day (health and weight issues aside), what would it be?

If I am to stick with traditional breakfast items, I'm split between pancakes and muffins. I'd probably side with pancakes (topped with maple syrup) if I'm eating out (I can't force myself not to use whole wheat and mine never turn out fluffy), and muffins if I had to make them myself. Or both since health and weight issues are not to be considered.

If I'm going non-traditional breakfast items, definitely pie.

Mar 01, 2013
Cinnamonster in General Topics

Risotto: Home Cooking Dish of the month (February 2013)

Made a risotto last night, wanted to try something different, so I decided to use some bulgur.

Used this recipe as a base: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

Ended up replacing the asparagus with broccoli (didn't have asparagus and didn't feel like going out to get some), also replaced the butter with some EVOO (just because I felt like it). Final change was removing the last 1/2 cup of stock and replacing it with some vermouth (wanted to finish off the last bit I had). Cut down on the cheese a bit as well.

Overall it came out pretty nice, should've stuck with the asparagus, the broccoli and peas ended up being milder than the cheese than I would've liked.

Feb 28, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking

Home Cooking Dish of the Month (March 2013) - Voting

TIKKA MASALA

Feb 28, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking

How do you like your Onion Rings?

I love onion rings in general (so all types are fine by me).
I do prefer ones that aren't overly greasy as well as ones that aren't limp.
Large and thick onion slices are also a plus, but I wouldn't say no to onion bits mushed together.
I enjoy various types of breading, and don't think I can pick one to be far above others.

Feb 28, 2013
Cinnamonster in General Topics

PB&J - Jelly in US, Jam in Canada

+1 to this.
Saw both from Smuckers as a kid in the grocery store, difference was that one used juice the other used fruit puree. Ever since then I've been going by this definition.

Feb 25, 2013
Cinnamonster in General Topics

The Taste Discussion - continued from original

They did say they were eliminating 3 next episode, and that would bring the total to 7 (unless I'm miscounting). Assuming they get rid of 3 in the other two episodes, it should all work out.

Edit: Although it makes less sense to me to get rid of more cooks as the competition is supposed to get harder.

Feb 21, 2013
Cinnamonster in Food Media & News

Home Cooking Dish of the Month (March 2013) - Nominations

I've been meaning to make more eggplant dishes, so EGGPLANT for me as well.

Feb 21, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking

Cake donut question

I'm not sure and just reporting back on my own searching through the internet.
The one that looks split open is sometimes referred to as an old-fashioned doughnut (however I've also seen that term applied to regular cake doughnuts as well).
The most significant difference I've seen is that old-fashioned doughnuts use buttermilk while other cake doughnuts might not. And another explanation is that the cracked edges originate from the side of the old-fashioned doughnut that hit the oil first.
Hopefully someone more knowledgeable than I can support or refute these.

Feb 19, 2013
Cinnamonster in General Topics

Pancake Tuesday

Already made an oversized apple cinnamon pancake for breakfast, probably going to skip pancakes for lunch, and thinking about banana pancakes for dinner.

Feb 12, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking

Why do we dislike Whey?

I wasn't referring to liquid whey, but the powdered variants often seen in protein powders. And while it usually isn't a large source of cholesterol there usually are varying degrees of cholesterol left in the majority of protein powders I've seen.

Feb 11, 2013
Cinnamonster in General Topics

Why do we dislike Whey?

Also, I feel like I should mention that I am not a doctor/nutritionist/dietitian/etc., but after hearing about it I looked up information online. The impression that I got was that it is a concern at least with plaque buildup in arteries (I only worry because my family has a history of heart disease).
So, please don't take my word as guaranteed fact, but only as a possible precaution.

Feb 11, 2013
Cinnamonster in General Topics

Why do we dislike Whey?

I used to be fine with it, but then I started hearing about most forms of whey protein powder having oxidized cholesterol, and since then I use very rarely. So I guess option B for me. I never thought it tasted bad, and never judged food/edibles based on how "cheap" or "uncivilized" they might be.

Feb 11, 2013
Cinnamonster in General Topics

Blizzard Baking

Love baking things as well. The blizzard's not needed, but helps.
Definitely making pancakes as well. Likely going to make a cinnamon raisin swirl bread, probably some corn muffins, and maybe a pizza.

Feb 07, 2013
Cinnamonster in Home Cooking