Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >

PBJulie's Profile

Title Last Reply

Savannah restaurants for a 9-9:30 pm dinner?


My husband and I will be flying into Savannah from Las Vegas, arriving at 8 pm on a Friday night. We would like to have dinner when we arrive, but I am guessing that it will be 9pm or even 9:30 before we can get somewhere. We are flexible as far as type of cuisine, but we would like a nicer, highly rated restaurant. Do restaurants in Savannah generally seat this late? What can you recommend?

Thanks in advance.

Oct 17, 2009
PBJulie in Southeast

Cupcakes/Desserts in Napa

Thanks so much to everyone for all of this great information. Very helpful!!

Cupcakes/Desserts in Napa

Where can I find the best cupcakes/cookies/brownies in the Napa Valley area? I need to bring a dessert tray to a picnic at a winery, and I would appreciate any recommendations. Thanks in advance!

PIcnic in Napa


I'm a Las Vegas-based chowhound, heading to Napa Valley with my husband for four days in July. One day, I would like to do a nice picnic lunch, and I would like recommendations on both where to purchase our food and where to have the picnic. We are staying in Healdsburg, but will have a car and don't mind a drive for a nice location and great food.

I did a search for this topic, but didn't find anything specific, so I apologize if this has already been addressed somewhere.

Thank you!

Last minute LOS help!


I'm going to Lotus of Siam this evening, and everytime that I go, I become overwhelmed with the menu and what to order. Any suggestions on the best dishes would be very welcome. We don't mind spicy foods, but cannot eat scallops due to an allergy. Anything else is fair game.

Sorry for the last minute posting, and thanks!

Apr 01, 2008
PBJulie in Southwest

Dessert rut

Here's a recipe for Apple Crostata with Brown Butter Streusel--similar to the galette idea.


Jan 26, 2008
PBJulie in Home Cooking

What are Chowhounds having for dinner tonight?

I'm making these Ancho Spiced Steaks with Cuban Espresso Sauce. I made the recipe earlier this week, and my husband asked to have it again--must be a keeper!


Jan 25, 2008
PBJulie in Home Cooking

Phoenix/Scottsdale for Superbowl

My husband and I are coming down from Las Vegas for the Superbowl (just found out) for four nights and would like some recommendations on where to eat. I am not at all familiar with the Phoenix/Scottsdale restaurant scene, so any help would be welcome.

We are probably looking for one top tier restaurant in terms of price, and the others can be more moderate. We like all types of cuisines, but to help narrow the selection down, if we could get suggestions for: Italian, Southwestern, Thai, Japanese, a good breakfast place, and perhaps a Steakhouse, that would be great. I know that everything is going to be packed that weekend, so any recommendations on lesser known "locals" places would be great too.

Thanks so much!

Jan 24, 2008
PBJulie in Phoenix

Winter pie?


I have two suggestions for your cranberries, but one is a "torte" and one is a "tart" in the event that you are willing to stray a bit from your pie idea.

The first is a Chocolate Cranberry Torte--very festive and rich:

The second in a version of the Austrian Linzertorte with cranberry filling and a lattice topping. Be patient with the crust--sometimes I end up just pressing it into the tart pan because the almonds can make it crumbly. The recipe is pasted below--sorry for the length, but I just had it in a Word document.

18 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries
2 ¼ cups sugar
1 teaspoon packed grated orange zest
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups whole almonds (blanched, preferably), toasted
1 ½ cups flour
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon ground allspice
2 teaspoons grated zest from 1 orange
1 ¼ sticks unsalted butter, softened
½ cup sugar
2 egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla

Make the filling: Combine cranberries, sugar, peel, and salt in a large saucepan. Stir over medium-low heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat to medium high and cook, stirring frequently, until most berries have burst, about 5 minutes. Transfer mixture to shallow bowl, cover and refrigerate until cold, 2-3 hours

For the crust: Process the almonds in a food processor until finely ground, about 20 seconds, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Place the ground almonds, flour, spices, salt, and zest in a medium bowl and whisk. Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of a standing mixer and beat at medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 3 minutes. Add the yolks and vanilla and mix at medium until combined. Add the flour and almond mixture and mix until combined. Form the dough into a ball and wrap in plastic. Chill 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 400F. Divide the dough in two pieces, one twice as large as the other. Roll the larger piece out or just press it into the bottom of a 9 or 10 inch tart pan with removable bottom (refrigerate the other piece). The layer should be about ¼ inch thick. Chill the pan in the freezer until firm, 15 minutes. Remove the pan and prick the dough lightly with a fork across the bottom. Line the pan with a square piece of lightly buttered aluminum foil and distribute pie weights evenly inside. Bake the crust until it is set and just slightly moist near the center, about 20 minutes. Remove the weights and foil and bake until the crust is dry and barely colored, 5 minutes longer. Place the pan on a wire rack to cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 350F. Unwrap the remaining of dough and roll between 2 sheets of floured parchment to an 11 inch square 1/8 inch thick. Transfer onto a cookie sheet and chill until firm, 15 minutes.

Remove the cranberry filling from the refrigerator and spread evenly into the bottom of the tart pan. Remove the top sheet of parchment from the chilled rolled out dough. Using a pizza cutter or a sharp knife and ruler, cut the dough into strips and form a lattice on top of the tart. Bake until the crust is lightly browned and the filling is bubbling, about 1 hour. Transfer the tart to a wire cooling rack and cool to room temperature. Dust with confectioners’ sugar when cooled.

Dec 04, 2007
PBJulie in Home Cooking

Dessert for a crowd - easy to make?

How about a pumpkin bread pudding or regular bread pudding with a sauce on the side (rum sauce, caramel sauce, creme anglaise)? I've tried both of the following recipes and they are both delicious. A large pan should feed quite a few people as a little goes a long ways.

And then there are always cupcakes. I don't know if there are going to be any children at your party, but this might be another possibility. I just posted some chocolate holiday cupcakes on my site if you need a "visual":

Hope this helps,


Dec 04, 2007
PBJulie in Home Cooking

How Long to Roast a Pork Loin?

That doesn't sound long enough to me at all. I just made the Pancetta Wrapped Pork Loin with Fig Jam from Epicurious tonight for dinner (it was wonderful--I highly recommend it). I had a 2.75 pound pork loin, and it took 1 1/2 hours at 400F. To keep it moist, start marinating several hours before or overnight. The recipe that I made also called for me to wrap the loin in thinly sliced pancetta, which I'm sure helped to keep it moist as well.

Good luck!


Dec 03, 2007
PBJulie in Home Cooking

Gingerbread Cookie recipe

Hi there!

Here is the recipe that I have been using for a few years now. I don't remember where I got it, but it has always gotten "two thumbs up" from my tasters. I have never tried honey in the recipe, but in order to keep them moist, I try to underbake them just a little bit. Makes about 20 cookies.

3 cups flour
¾ cup packed dark brown sugar
¾ teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ sticks unsalted butter, softened
¾ cup molasses
2 tablespoons whole milk
Royal Icing for decorating

In a food processor, process the flour, brown sugar, baking soda, spices, and salt until combined. Scatter the butter pieces over the flour mixture and process until the mixture resembles fine meal. With the machine running, gradually add the molasses and the milk; process until the dough is evenly moistened and forms a soft mass.

Scrape the dough onto a work surface and divide it in half. Working with one portion at a time, roll the dough ¼ inch thick between 2 large sheets of parchment paper. Leaving the dough between the papers, stack it on a baking sheet and freeze it until firm, 15 minutes (alternatively, refrigerate 2 hours or overnight).

Place oven racks in upper and lower thirds and preheat the oven to 350 F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Remove 1 dough sheet and the parchment paper. Cut the dough into shapes, transfer to a baking sheet, and space 1 inch apart. Bake the cookies until set in the center, 8-11 minutes, rotating positions halfway through. Cool to room temperature on a wire rack and decorate if desired.

Hope this helps.


Dec 03, 2007
PBJulie in Home Cooking

Simple sugar cookies


This is my "go-to" recipe for decorator sugar cookies. The dough is easy to roll out, not at all crumbly. I definitely recommend using parchment paper--helps to bake evenly and prevent sticking. I also like to freeze the dough for 5-10 minutes after rolling out AND after cutting the shapes and putting them on the cookie sheet. This helps them to retain their shape when baking. The orange zest is optional, but I love the flavor that it adds.
Makes about 24
3 ¼ cups flour
¼ teaspoon salt
2 ½ sticks butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest

Whisk together the flour and salt and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle, beat the butter and sugar at medium high speed until light and creamy, s minutes. Add the egg, egg yolk, vanilla, and orange zest and mix until well blended. Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture 1/3 at a time, mixing until just combined. Turn the dough out onto a work surface, divide into 4 pieces, shape each into a disk, and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 days.

Preheat the oven to 350 F. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the dough to an 1/8 inch thickness. Cut the dough into desired shapes and transfer to baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Bake for 8-11 minutes, until pale golden brown. Transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely.

I should have my cookies up on my site ( in the next week or so--working on the Gingerbread house right now! Hope this helps.


Dec 03, 2007
PBJulie in Home Cooking

Best Paula Deen Recipes?

I love her "Fully Loaded Oatmeal Cookies with Brown Butter Icing". The icing alone is fantastic (and addictive!). I don't know if the recipe is in any of her cookbooks, but it is on the Food Network site.



Dec 02, 2007
PBJulie in Home Cooking

What do you eat when you are home alone? [moved from Home Cooking]

My husband is not a big vegetable eater, so when I am home alone, I like to eat healthy: roast a butternut squash with some cinnamon and maple syrup or roast a selection of veggies: fennel, shiitakes, sweet potatoes, broccoli, red peppers, eggplant--whatever is seasonal--tossed with olive oil and balsamic. They caramelize so nicely. I also like the tomato soup and grilled cheese combo (so comforting), but "update" it with some prosciutto and grainy mustard on the sandwich:

Dec 01, 2007
PBJulie in General Topics

What Christmas cookies are you baking this year?

I just made Raspberry Linzer cookies and Rum Raisin Sandwich cookies for a party. You can see the photos and recipes here: http://www.peanutbutterandjulie.typep...
I'll also make the decorated sugar cookies and gingerbread, but I really enjoy making holiday desserts like a Yule Log, Apple Strudel, and Stollen (O.K., technically more of a breakfast pastry!)

Dec 01, 2007
PBJulie in Home Cooking