BobB's Profile

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What are white anchovies?

Then you had some bad ones (or - conversely - you've had some spectacular sardines). Good boquerones are much tangier and firmer-textured than typical sardines.

about 10 hours ago
BobB in General Topics

Dishwasher Safe Knives...is there such a thing?

Ditto on the Henkels, but my best knives are Sabatier carbon steel and they always get hand-washed. If I'm just chopping up a vegetable the Henkels are fine, but for serious surgery and really precise work they just don't cut it. ;-)

1 day ago
BobB in Cookware

Lunch in JP?

I know this has been discussed before, but it seems there have been a spate of new places opening recently, and I'm wondering if local 'hounds have any favorites. Preferably someplace with good veggie options.

May 01, 2015
BobB in Greater Boston Area

Looking for Fromager d'Affinois BLUE

The good news - I found it! At, of all places, Star Market. The bad news - the stock at my local one (Packard's Corner) is well past its prime. I got one anyway and cut off the brown, moldy rind, but the interior, while still edible and unctuously creamy, is much stronger-flavored than it should be.

But during my search I spoke to the Star in Central Square, and they said they're out of stock but are expecting more tomorrow. Hopefully it will be fresh, I'll check it out and let you know.

Apr 29, 2015
BobB in Greater Boston Area

Looking for Fromager d'Affinois BLUE

Tried them - they don't have it but will have their cheese buyer call me back and let me know if they can special-order it. Also tried Russo's, they also carry only the plain version.

Apr 29, 2015
BobB in Greater Boston Area

Looking for Fromager d'Affinois BLUE

Just did - no luck. They tried to steer me to a gorgonzola dolce, but that's a whole different animal.

Apr 28, 2015
BobB in Greater Boston Area

bologna..?

Thanks, I'll keep an eye out for it. I'm very open to buying online from a better producer - I already get my bacon and some sausages shipped in from Neuske's of Wisconsin.

Apr 28, 2015
BobB in General Topics
1

1955 crown royal

Don't get your hopes up - psirah hasn't posted anything in over two years. (S)he's probably long gone from Chowhound.

Apr 28, 2015
BobB in Spirits

Pronunciation-checked at Penzey’s

That's true of a number of spices - I also refill many of my jars with the little pouches from the Mexican aisle in a local supermarket.

bologna..?

OK, now you've got me intrigued. I like an occasional bologna sandwich (preferably Deutschmacher brand, though I'll settle for Dietz & Watson), but have never heard of ring bologna. A quick google tells me it's a midwestern specialty that looks like a kielbasa, but I'm in New England where it's apparently not available.

Can you recommend a good mail order source?

Apr 28, 2015
BobB in General Topics

Looking for Fromager d'Affinois BLUE

I got this once at Dave's in Davis Square and it was amazing - what Cambozola would be if it died and went to heaven. But last time I was in they had only the plain and herbed versions, and everywhere else I've looked has only the plain. Anyone seen the blue anywhere in metro Boston?

Apr 28, 2015
BobB in Greater Boston Area

air travel with sushi

True of TSA, but I've had food items (sausages, etc) confiscated by Customs more than once when bringing them back from Europe. And I'm also a frequent international traveler (2.7 million miles on American and counting).

Apr 25, 2015
BobB in General Topics

air travel with sushi

True, but the problem would not be the sushi per se, but rather the ice or gel pack used to keep it chilled. Best to pack in in your checked luggage, then the "no liquids or gels" rule does not apply.

Apr 25, 2015
BobB in General Topics
1

When was the last time you had a REAL hot dog?

A few months back. I don't eat many dogs, but when I do I go for the Pearl "Kountry Klub" variety. Delicious, snappy natural casing, and about 1/4 lb each. I'm not sure how widely they're distributed outside New England though - even around here where they're made not every grocery carries them. And you don't find them in the hot dog aisle, they're only sold at the deli counter as they come in big packages with all the links still connected, so the clerk cuts off the amount you want.

Apr 25, 2015
BobB in General Topics

Russian Market

Where are you located? Here in Boston - home to a 30,000+ Russian emigré population - we have lots of Russian stores, and all the clerks speak English.

As for what would only be found in a Russian market, lots of things. A few examples:

* A wide variety of smoked and pickled fish (try the Tsar's herring!).

* Multiple types of pelmeni (found in the freezer case), which are little dumplings stuffed with meat and/or veggies, generally steamed, browned, and served with smetana (sort of a cross between sour cream and yogurt, also available at these stores).

* Lots of different types of salami-type products - I'm a fan of anything made by Schaller & Weber (German style, but hard to find elsewhere) and spicy "gypsy" salami.

* Koulebyaka (spelled various ways), a sort of calzone-type pastry, stuffed with things like salmon, potatoes, cabbage, eggs, or mushrooms.

Apr 22, 2015
BobB in General Topics
1

Anywhere to buy sorrel?

I grow my own, and as gimlis1mum said, it's just poking up now. I have seen it occasionally at farmer's markets, but have never seen it in a store anywhere. My theory of why that is is is that it wilts very quickly after being picked, so would look quite unappetizing by the time it got through the supermarket procurement process.

Apr 17, 2015
BobB in Greater Boston Area

Lamb - domestic (American), Australian or New Zealand?

None of the above. Icelandic lamb is far and away the best-tasting in the world. I was blown away the first time I had it in Reykjavik. Hard to find here, but Whole Foods gets it occasionally.

But when I can't get Icelandic, I go with New Zealand.

Apr 17, 2015
BobB in General Topics

best store-bought lox/smoked salmon?

Very cool - I've been saying for years that the best-tasting packaged smoked salmon is Spence & Co's Traditional Scottish-style, which is the same one they picked. Be careful when shopping though - Spence & Co makes a variety of smoked salmon products, and none of the others come close to the Scottish-style in smokiness. And in my experience (Boston area), most stores sell some type(s) of Spence & Co, but only Whole Foods sells the Scottish.

Apr 17, 2015
BobB in General Topics

Spreadable Sausage

How big are they? The S&W I get around here are all 7 oz, which I can polish off solo in two or three days, well before it goes bad.

Apr 15, 2015
BobB in General Topics

Spreadable Sausage

You can get very good versions of both of those here from Schaller & Weber.

Apr 15, 2015
BobB in General Topics

Help with braised lamb ideas

I do a spicy lamb tagine with cauliflower that my guests love. Here's the recipe.

Ingredients:
1/4 cup peanut oil
3 - 4 lbs lamb shoulder or leg, cut into ~1" cubes
1/4 tsp turmeric
Kosher salt & fresh-ground pepper to taste
2 medium onions, chopped
1-1/2 tsp ground ginger
Pinch of saffron
1 tbsp paprika
1-1/2 tsp ground cumin
1-1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper
1 large cauliflower
Juice of two fresh lemons

Method:
Heat the oil in a heavy dutch oven, then add the meat with the turmeric, salt, & pepper. Stir frequently until the meat is browned, then reduce heat to low, cover pot, and simmer for 15 minutes.
Add the onion and the remaining spices, recover the pot, and simmer 1-1/2 hours or until the meat is tender.
Meanwhile, break the cauliflower into flowerets and steam until just barely tender.
When meat is done, transfer it to a low, wide baking dish, with all of the juices. Arrange the cauliflower on top and bake for about 15 minutes in a 400° oven, until the cauliflower just starts to brown. Remove from oven, squeeze the lemon juice all over it, and serve.

I usually serve it with a rice pilaf.

Apr 14, 2015
BobB in Home Cooking

Spreadable Sausage

I've had a locally-made artisanal version of nduja and found it quite tasty, albeit VERY spicy. Not sure what that says about this brand though.

Apr 14, 2015
BobB in General Topics

Ceviche help! Please!

Since thimes says (s)he only does that with fish that's not fresh, I'm guessing it's to clear off any potential fishiness that unfresh fish can have.

And I concur with those who say that marinating for more than a few hours overcooks it.

Apr 08, 2015
BobB in Home Cooking
2

delicious chilli

I've developed mine over the years and am now pretty famous for it in my circles. A few basic rules (and yes, these are mine, not anyone else's):

1) NO TOMATOES!!! For that matter no veggies of any sort other than onions and garlic. Tomatoes turn chili into spaghetti sauce.

2) No ground beef - use chuck beef cut into ~1/2" cubes (I'm told that in places like Texas you can get what's called chili grind, much chunkier than regular ground beef, but where I live that's not an option).

3) Three different colors of beans, white, red, and black, for added visual appeal.

4) LOTS of ancho chili powder, cumin, and chipotle peppers.

I can provide a link to the complete recipe if you want.

Apr 08, 2015
BobB in Home Cooking

favorite cut of beef to roast?

The term is French, and is actually spelled au jus. It means "with the juice," i.e. the red beef juices. In America it's come to be used most often in low(ish) end restaurants selling roast beef sandwiches "au jus," which usually means the sandwich is served with a cup of "jus" on the side for dipping. It may be the actual meat juices, or may be a separately-concocted gravy, depending on the restaurant.

As a language purist I find it amusing to see menus that say the sandwich is served "with au jus." (with with juice)

Apr 08, 2015
BobB in Home Cooking

Boston Public Market Proposal

I am so glad to see they changed the rules to allow vendors from elsewhere in New England - this initial list includes a cheesemaker from Vermont and a Rhode Island hog farm offering charcuterie.

One thing I don't see in this release - or anywhere on their site, for that matter - is when they plan to open. Am I missing that, or has it not yet been announced?

Apr 07, 2015
BobB in Greater Boston Area
1

Favorite Vodkas, New Favorite

My late wife was Russian, and there's a major Russian emigré community here in Boston (I think she knew half of them), so I've been to countless authentic Russian dinners. The vodka on the table, almost invariably, is Русский Стандарт (Russian Standard). Great stuff.

Apr 06, 2015
BobB in Spirits

scanpan nonstick skillet

I've been very happy with the big 12-1/2" Scanpan skillet I bought a few years ago, but I recently needed a new smaller one, did some research, and ended up buying a Le Creuset, which I have to say is even more impressive. Solid, even heating, and a non-stick surface that's like nothing I've ever used before. No matter what I cook in it, I just let it cool, then run warm water over it and every speck of food rinses right off without a touch. Downright spooky!

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001...

Apr 06, 2015
BobB in Cookware

how to use a new mold?

I'm not sure what you're asking here. It's a heat-resistant mold. Mix whatever you're making, then depending on the recipe, either bake or chill it until the contents are firm, and invert it to remove the finished goodies.

Oh, and wash it before the first time you use it.

Apr 06, 2015
BobB in Cookware

Talk about triumph over adversity...

Award-winning chef started out at...Olive Garden!?!

http://www.npr.org/2015/04/04/3974819...

Apr 05, 2015
BobB in Food Media & News