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FooDeeLee's Profile

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Lost my crema, help!

I have a Krupps XP6040 coffee/espresso machine which I believe puts out 19 bars of pressure. And since the beginning I've had inconsistent crema levels but essentially always a respectable amount, nothing like at a restaurant, but I was happy with it.

Now I've had it for about a year or just over, and for about a month its been giving me really low crema, basically a film of crema some times you could see into the coffee through little pools of no crema. And the coffee seems watery too.

I've always use the same coffee, bustelo, and whether that is good or bad for crema, theres been a change in crema without a change in coffee. Also I used a fresh bag to see if that was the problem and no difference so the coffees probably not the problem. I descaled and ran it again and no difference. I measured the liquid output and for a double shot and its around 90ml not 100ml, where it should be. So the taste should be strong, not watery? The shot comes out about 145 degrees Fahrenheit. The shot time is about 30 seconds, which for a 8,9 bar machine is long, but with my higher pressure I read a longer shot time is normal. All that is left for me to check, I think, is the pressure and I don't know how to check that. Lastly, I've always had a problem having to clean a little drip off where the shot comes out since it drys up and gets concentrated coffee stuck there, now there is no such mark. Please someone help.

Nov 13, 2014
FooDeeLee in Cookware

To all the Nawlanders

Well, I twiked the recipe above and it came out great. The recipe calls for 3 cups rice and 5 cups stock, so I either used 2 and three quarters or three (I think three) of rice and 6 cups of stock, plus the liquid from one 12 oz can of diced tomatoes and I used a small can of tomato paste which I substituted for the tomato sauce in the recipe.

I was going to lower my rice portion as I indicated above, but since I was going to add extra meat I figured I'd leave the rice the same and increase the stock.

Other than what I just mentioned the changes I made to the recipe were three quarters of a pound of chicken (diced) instead of the pork shoulder, a little under half a pound of precooked shrimp (chopped), one 12 oz can of black beans (drained) and siracha instead of tobacco. And it came out great. Moist like I thought it should be like paella. I took it to my friend and he loved it said it was comparable to what you get in the finer restaurants in New Orleans. So mystery solved, online recipe as far as I'm concerned had too much rice that made it dry and apparently true Jambalaya isn't as mushy as what my friend made.

Apr 03, 2013
FooDeeLee in General Topics

To all the Nawlanders

Funny you should mention that video, after about 20 min. of research, not long at all, that was the recipe I settled on and made. Obviously I like the recipe, but I don't like it as a recipe recipe, first off he uses as an ingredient, left over pork shoulder, so obviously he's just throwing things together, which is fine to a certain extent thats what Jambalaya is to a lot of people but I'd like a honed in recipe. Secondly he's not calling out any quantities, so I looked online and found two sites that had his recipe and they were identical so I figured it was good enough. Even though for example John uses bacon fat to start off the cooking and later adds lardons (does this make a difference?), the written recipe calls for bacon and no bacon fat. He says Jasmine rice, the written recipe calls for "converted" rice, I read parboiled is the same as converted so thats what I used. Also the video shows what looks to be a little less then three cups of rice. Thats got to be why mine was not so moist. Heres the recipe if your interested.

http://digitalnomad.nationalgeographi...

When I ate Jambalaya in New Orleans many moons ago I remembered it looking like what the video shows, but what my friend served me was much thicker and mine was better by the way. I'm gonna stick with that recipe and twik it.

If anyone has a better recipe, please let me know, and any advice or corrections are appreciated.

Apr 02, 2013
FooDeeLee in General Topics

To all the Nawlanders

I'm not saying that Jambalaya is a mostly rice dish. I am saying that I don't know what is suppose to look like. Although if you do a google image search for Jambalaya, you'll see a lot of dishes that look like they are made up of mostly rice.

But to be clear, where I'm confused or at least where I think Im confused is whether or not its a creamy/moist dish or a simple rice dish with, depending on what house or region your from, different stuff (andouille, chicken, seafood, vegges, spices,........) inside.

My gut tells me it looks like paella with a different spice and protein profile and regular rice, but the same general texture (considering the rice and broth interplay, of course)

Apr 01, 2013
FooDeeLee in General Topics

To all the Nawlanders

I have a friend who is just obsessed with Jambalaya, we had it in New Orleans once and I believe he's had some business trips there and had some more. At home there is no place to have good Jambalaya according to him. He says most places serve you yellow rice with stuff in it. Now Jambalaya came out of settlers trying to make paella from what they had and so it should be somewhat yellow rice with stuff in it. Now I haven't seen the dishes hes talking about, I'm sure a few are indeed yellow rice mixed with stuff instead of an actual pot of prepared Jambalaya, but all the pictures of Jambalaya I seen the Internet, while I wouldn't describe it as yellow rice with stuff in it, that basically what it looks like.

I went to my friends house and he was going to show me real Jambalaya, and as picky as he is with having really Jambalaya, hes at the same time a real, a man, a can, a plan, type of cook. So I don't know if what came out was what he intended to come out, but what came out was this really thick tomato based, almost casserole type consistency, pot. Again all the pictures I've seen are more paella looking, some with a lot of ingredients, some with just sausage. I looked for a long time for a recipe and made it and maybe I let it simmer too long or what, but it didn't come out as moist as the recipe looked, and again I could have served that to some unsuspecting person and they may have thought it was yellow rice with "stuff" thrown in.

So what should Jambalaya look like?

Apr 01, 2013
FooDeeLee in General Topics

What to buy, where.

I'm starting to do a lot of cooking at home, for one, because I want to start learning to cook and eat good, healthy and savoury. And two because I need to watch the wallet a little. These are opposing forces so I want to ask you all what you thought.

I just got a membership at a warehouse store and was thinking about the quality of the food. Part of me thinks for example an onion, is an onion, is an onion, but maybe not. When it comes to meat without any real knowledge on the subject I just rather shop at the local supermarket and a butcher for the good stuff, but again maybe not. Is food at a warehouse store just as good as say walmart, supermarket... (lets keep the discussion centred around chain stores)

What say you. I'm wondering about the veggies, fruits, cheeses, milk..... any opinions would be appreciated.

Mar 31, 2013
FooDeeLee in Chains

Dessert/Baked Goods that can be left out

Depends on how good you can bake.

Mar 31, 2013
FooDeeLee in General Topics

Dessert/Baked Goods that can be left out

Thanks for some suggestions, but could you let me know how long it takes for her to put a new batch out. That'll help me because if she and her company finishes batches of sweets daily then there not hanging around day after day. And that basically my question.

What are the limitations on leaving baked goods out all the time. I read somewhere custard based pies need to be refrigerated. Now does that mean any baked good with eggs in it needs to be refrigerated.

I'm thinking of having mostly pies as the centerpiece sweet. As one gets eaten I bake another and I figure as soon as everyone gets used to there always being a pie, brownie, muffin, whatever there, say a pies worth will start to take two or three days to get finished. Is this too long to leave a pie out.

For example I'd like to make shoofly pie and that has an egg as an ingredient, can that be left out and if so for how long. I'm sort of looking for general rules here.

Mar 31, 2013
FooDeeLee in General Topics

Dessert/Baked Goods that can be left out

I want to start a little custom in my house where there is always a little confection/sweet available for eating. Part of that is at least in theory so that when you have something always available to you don't over eat because you know it will always be there. At first whatever is baked will get gobbled up but over time it will be reasonably munched on.

Now this can be achieved by always having something in the fridge, but I want to take it a step further and have it always be out in everyone's face.

Im thinking of getting one of those fancy glass serving plates that raised off the counter with a matching lit cover to keep out the bugs, it probably has a name but I don't know it, it looks like it can fit a nice sized cake exactly.

So can it be done and if so what would be the restrictions. And suggestions would be appreciated.

Mar 30, 2013
FooDeeLee in General Topics

Can a Stir Fry Wok double as a Saucier

Ok, so I'll return the wok. But I felt that I needed to buy something because all my saute or frying pans are non-stick and since you need to constantly whisk roux, that wouldn't work. Also when I think of whisking (someting I've never done, always used a fork for eggs and mixer for batters, meringue...) you need a wide mouth vessel to at the very lest make it easy and if nothing else to do it properly with the speed required. Now this may not be the case with roux and sauces, since I've never done one I don't know?

Now I have a stainless steel pan, about a quart or two in size. After that I'd have to jump to a stock pot. So I guess I can try that. I bought myself a balloon whisk, thinking it was an all around whisk, but for working in a straight sided pot, do you think I should get thin, narrow whisk? My balloon whisk is about half the diameter of my pot so that would be a very tight range of movement.

Also I have a cast iron skillet, 10 inch I think, but I'm still struggling to season it correctly. I can't seem to get that non-stick feeling and I've followed advice on cleaning them with kosher salt and that just seems to take out any little non-stick surface I had. So constantly whisking (an "abrasive") on that surface would do the same. Also I know iron is good for us, but all that whisking would produce a lot and does that affect the taste of the sauce?

Just so you know, I left my cast Iron on the burner unattended once and it created a black spot in the center so I don't know if that is what is causing my issues with properly seasoning it, but thats my working theory.

Mar 24, 2013
FooDeeLee in Cookware

Can a Stir Fry Wok double as a Saucier

I'm just getting into cooking and the next thing I want to try is making roux and sauces (mainly from roux). Now I believe the best way to make this is with a Saucier, meaning a pan with sloped sides and rounded edges, to make easy work of whisking (a must for roux) and to aid in sauce reduction due to faster evaporation.

Now I've looked around and unless I want to reduce my per piece cost by buying a whole set, a decent saucier would cost upwards of a hundred dollars. So I though this could pass for a Saucier:

http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/produ...
18 bucks!!!

Not knowing if it would I figured, if not I could just start to learn to make stir frys and just bought it and would return it if anything. When I got home I learned two things that concern me, first, I have to season the Carbon Steel Wok which is a hassle for me and second, its bad with acidic foods. And I'm also thinking maybe this is bad to use a whisk on?

Any suggestions?

Mar 23, 2013
FooDeeLee in Cookware