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CaliforniaJoseph's Profile

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Help me build a great cookware set!

I use my 3.5 quart DO for oatmeal and small batch soup - probably overkill and I could get along well enough with other things I have... But that's how I use mine.

6 minutes ago
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

De-Electrifying the Kitchen

Cast your own rocket stove and wok & roll brother! Material costs: about $4.50.

And save those cherry pits, they burn beautifully. (I use walnuts from the tree in my backyard... By the time the highest ones fall - and I find them - they are a little dodgy for eating, but as fuel the rock!)

about 23 hours ago
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

Help me build a great cookware set!

"7. I would add a wok and a large (like 14-16Q) stockpot. Both of these can be uber cheap, like $20, and still work really well. Better yet, make your stockpot a canner.

8. Get a pressure cooker. I recommend stovetop over electric, and if you pick the right size, it can also serve as a small stockpot or oven (it takes people years to realize PCs can be used just like a regular pot, too)."

Yes. This. He typed what I thought.

36 years without a pressure cooker... After I got one I couldn't figure out how I did without. I now have a couple.

The stockpot is also something amazing to have but I don't know if I'd put it on the registry... I just bought a new, unused 16 quart stocker on eBay - factory second with a 2" scratch - for $4.49 + $11 shipping and handling. Stainless, thick base, lid. I already had a 21.5 quart Graniteware canner I got for $8 at thrift shop & a 20 quart aluminum pressure cooker that I needed about as much as an 11th toe for $9.88... But I really wanted a stainless large capacity pot for the twice a year I will use it... So I splurged and bought a stockpot for less than a dollar per quart capacity because I am decadent like that.

Also on the "get for yourself at thrift shops, garage sales & eBay" list: old school pyro ceramic corningware. The French White collection holds the record for being the most registered-for cookware EVER so there is a ton of it out there still (bet you a buck your relatives have some!). The new stuff does not hold a candle to the old, so go hunting for the old. It will rock your leftovers on Black Friday.

I bake bread and cheaper roasts and chicken in clay roasters.... Also something not essential but I'm no minimalist.

Whole birds I spatchcock and roast directly on oven rack over a cookie sheet. You could get by without poultry shears... But for $7.50/free shipping on eBay... Well it's a fun tool to have.

My "saucier" is a very thick Calphalon anodized aluminum 10" wok I picked up on eBay new without package for $15 free shipping. It is lightweight, a breeze to clean and looks cool hanging from my pot rack. I never actually use it as a wok.

about 23 hours ago
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

Help me build a great cookware set!

A 12" or 14" carbon steel wok. I cook for two (or less!) most nights and the 12" wok is fine. No fancy brand names needed, you can pick one up at world market or an Asian grocery for under $15. I don't use mine all the time, but when I do, I'm happy I have it.

We are a couple of egg heads (yuck yuck yuck!) who eat eggs for breakfast daily. I have two matching 7" uncoated anodized aluminum pans I use them only for eggs and only with the lightest coating of butter and olive oil I swirl and pour out. In three minutes I have eggs cooked perfectly that slide out of the pan without a utensil. They then get wiped out with a paper towel and returned to their hooks. Maybe not an absolute essential for your cookery, but I absolutely love mine.

1 day ago
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

Stainless or hard anodized roasting pan?

Very old thread, but I know a lot of folks (like me) read archive threads...

Your Graniteware roaster is enamel on carbon steel, not aluminum. It could go on the stovetop the very same way a Graniteware stockpot or water bath canner does.

1 day ago
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

Basic Steamed White Rice

"The old Joy of Cooking said cups rice to two cups water."

How many to what then????

Jul 09, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Recipes

Cheap Foods that Become Popular

When I spatchcock a bird I always do it myself... Do some stores sell them that way?

Jul 08, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in General Topics

Best omelet pan?

Old school pyroceram CorningWare is my re-heating cookware of choice. Thanksgiving Friday is always a re-heated feast in French White in my home as it was in my mother's!

Jul 07, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

I'm so over...

Yeah, making something "the enemy" and blaming it for "what's wrong with the world" doesn't ever seem to do much good, does it? In my lifetime the following culinary enemies have been targeted by a country - calories, fat, calories from fat, carbohydrates, gluten, sugar, artificial sweeteners, preservatives, fast food, snack foods, salt, cholesterol... I know I am missing several...

And our national struggle with obesity has gotten worse even though we named, blamed and shamed all these food types as "unhealthy"!

Jul 07, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in General Topics

I'm so over...

Heck if I know! I've wondered myself - I think it runs the spectrum from "moral superiority" to "do-goodism" to good old fashioned "speaking without thinking" (a malady that afflicts me often!)

Jul 07, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in General Topics

Advice for operating without Kitchen (during remodel)

I was without an oven/stove for a week (old house, wiring issue, over-booked electrician...).

A discount store $9 hot plate and a 30cm cast aluminum caldero was my substitute. For one week I used it as a smoker & oven. I baked chicken, quiche, carrot cake, cornbread & more on my back step. Just insert a small wire rack - I found one for 50ยข at thrift shop, heat on highest heat for ten and finish baking on medium.

I don't think my carrot cake or cornbread was ever as moist. The quiche turned out just the same as in my regular oven.

Aluminum ring pans worked beautifully for cornbread and cake. It was my makeshift version of an Israeli "Wonder Pot".

Jul 07, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware
1

I'm so over...

In my experience with GF true believers their new diets probably DID make them feel a lot better. Not because gluten was out, but because fruit, veg, home cooked and a considered and intentional eating regimen was IN. I call it the "stone soup effect". If you live on burgers, pizza and beer... And then go GF and start eating salads, lean grilled meats & drinking more water...

...yeah, I'd expect you to feel better!

Jul 07, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in General Topics
1

How to word invitation- not paying for drinks

Maybe I'm an unsophisticated monkey, but "no-host bar" seems less clear and no more nuanced than "cash bar".

Plus (sheepish admission) in my early 20s as a college student I once mistook "No host bar" for "self-serve", and imagined I would do fine pouring my own cocktails from liqour bottles left on table with no bartender tending bar! :0 (Fortunately they had "Swill Lite" or some such for a $1, well within my student budget!)

Jul 07, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Not About Food
2

I'm so over...

"Unhealthy food" - in the context of creating "food enemies". Calories, fat, carbs, processed food, fast food, restaurant food, fried food gluten... You get the idea.

2-3 times a year I have to have deep fried chicken (use lard please), once a month I swing through a fast food joint for French fries, once a week I want a candy bar.

"Unhealthy diets" - sure that's a real concern... But once a month when I am eating my In-and-Out burger in the breakroom at work that one co-worker who comes in and comments "ugh, so unhealthy!" or "Do you know how much fat is in that?" or "Fast food is unhealthy!"... I'm over it.

Jul 07, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in General Topics
1

I'm so over...

I've seen the slow cooker conversion kits - which a co-worker swears by - for >$99. It's neither pricey nor space consuming... I do not have one nor have I tried his cooking...

Jul 07, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in General Topics

"New Revereware"

Yeah, I think you are safe.

Jul 06, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

What's your best yard sale or thrift store cookware find?

Rubbermaid tote taped up and marked $14.96 - AS IS

Wagner Ware waffle Iron
Griswold #8 skillet
Gris. French waffle iron
Griswold 1890s era 14" griddle (only marked "Erie")

The other shoppers couldn't figure out why this fool was so giddy about his rusty finds. "Careful or you'll need a 'Tetris' shot!" one warned.

Jun 30, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

Which pan to use for perfect roasted chicken?

A baking sheet on the rack below serves the same function - that is what I do.

Jun 27, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

Suggestions for using cast iron pan

If one is keeping kosher chicken/goose fat would be the animal fats to use.

Jun 25, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

"New Revereware"

We will have to agree to disagree as much as we possibly can then.

Jun 25, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

"New Revereware"

That's no museum. I do have All-Clad and Club Aluminum. Most of my cooking isn't so delicate as to demand that much attention. I'd wager the same is true for 97% of America. These are fun, inexpensive, light serviceable pieces that are found easily for little to no cost. A great way for a newbie to cut teeth on SS cooking.

Jun 21, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

"New Revereware"

Pre-68 it was 2mm. Post 68 1mm. (US made, the Korean stuff rubs off)

Jun 21, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

"New Revereware"

The pre-68 stuff seems sturdier. The pans I use the most often, my two omelette pans, are post 68... And they produce lovely 2-egg omelettes.

Jun 21, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

How do you use a copper egg (or escargot?) pan? The kind with the little depressions...

Bump. Was just given one also!

Jun 21, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

Chantal's Japanese 21/0 Stainless Steel

Thought the photo downloaded

Apr 18, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

Chantal's Japanese 21/0 Stainless Steel

So I picked one of these up at a Ross Department store (west coast TJ Maxx type factory second/buyout retailer)... It had a small 2 inch scratch on exterior which made the price VERY right (80% off MSRP of $120).

I've never before heard of Japanese 21/0 SS before. I was intrigued so I started to research... It didn't turn up much besides links to sellers of Chantal cookware.

The claims - up to and including 30% faster than 18/8 - I can't verify... In my 100% scientifically flawed apples to oranges "boil off" between it and a late 90s era hand-me-down Korean-made disc bottom 6 qt RevereWare Dutch oven... The latter came to a boil 3 minutes faster on an electric coil... But again apples to oranges...

I'm perfectly pleased the purchase though, I wanted an induction compatible 8qt stainless stock pot to replace my warped and chipping enamel on steel pot... This does exactly that just fine...

But I'm curious, what's the deal with the 21/0 SS? Chantal seems to be the only one using/marketing it. What's your opinion, is it worth paying a premium?

Apr 18, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware

Why Yelp is useless (Boston discussion on their "Top 100 places to eat!" article

I briefly used Yelp... And felt like it was over run by folks who use it like "Complainbook"...

Apr 18, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Greater Boston Area

Cooking for a picky eater...

With all due love, respect and affection for another Hound, you may need to sit HIS butt down and tell him that if he's that particular about what food you prepare that he'll actually eat, than he needs to help you establish a menu.

I've discovered my "picky eater" (we're talking a guy who never had a taco till he was 20, Chinese food till 22 and only vanilla ice cream till about 24!) - actually isn't half as picky as he thought... just mostly scared of things he doesn't already know he likes.. (At 28 guess who just tried carrot cake for the first time and was relieved to find out it wasn't a "vegetable loaf"!)

So I'd say ask for input, push the envelope a bit, and if something falls flat with him... as grandma would say "eggs and bacon are in the fridge - you know where I keep the skillets!"

Apr 02, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Home Cooking
2

Borough Furnace Skillets?

Looking back on what I wrote it occured to me my post might have landed as "judgemental" and I wanted to be responsible for that. Putting a kitchen together with pieces you are proud of is of course something we all do and we value things that speak to our taste. Having read more about what this company is doing, I can appreciate that you could value their efforts!

So sorry if my response seemed critical. I was coming from a place of spending the last few years hitting up thrift shops, junktique stores, flea markets and yard sales to find quality undervalued pieces for my kitchen - starting from scratch with a $10-15 a week budget... and my first thought was the knee jerk reaction of someone who imagined how many Griswold skillets I could score around here - probably a dozen! - with that budget. Again, I think its cool you are supporting these folks, I was just in "find the value" mode.

Mar 27, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware
1

Need Help with New Stainless Steel Tri-Ply Calphalon

The diswasher won't scrub them more thoroughly than a little elbow grease and Bon Ami & Bar Keeper's Friend. I have the Calphalon tri-ply 12" skillet I picked up for $25 at a factory second store - it had a 2 inch scratch on the BOTTOM of the pan (right where I was planning on putting one!) so I was pleased. My house is 104 years old and it just so happens yours truly IS the diswashwer.

If you had concerns about bacteria and what not, you could always dry the pans in the oven for a few minutes at 350.

I get more mileage out of a little BKF & Bon Ami (I use both because they are actually different products and I seldom spend more than 15 seconds before I'm ready to return proudly display my trophy on the pot-rack we designed.)

I realize this is an answer to a question you didn't ask, and not an answer to what you did ask, but I thought it might be of some use.

Mar 27, 2014
CaliforniaJoseph in Cookware