greygarious's Profile

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Instant mashed sweet potato flakes?

I noticed that cases of Betty Crocker instant mashed sweet potato are sold on Amazon. They are in 3oz. packets. I'd like to try them but don't want a case. Has anyone ever noticed this or another brand at Boston area supermarkets and if you've tried them, how were they?

15 minutes ago
greygarious in Greater Boston Area

What do you mean by - 2 cups half-and-half?

@BeccaPorter I have lived in NY and MA all my 65 years and every supermarket here has always sold light cream AND half&half.

20 minutes ago
greygarious in Home Cooking

BEST real life food related joke of the day!!

There was the priceless, confused look on the face of a teenage stock clerk at the supermarket (years ago) when I was looking in vain for canning jars and asked if they had any Ball jars...

about 1 hour ago
greygarious in General Topics

What do you mean by - 2 cups half-and-half?

@BeccaPorter - Your post may confuse the OP, as you fail to mention what type of cream. Your suggestion refers to heavy or whipping cream but would be wrong with light cream. It's called half and half because it's a 1:1 ratio of whole milk and light cream, as I previously posted.

about 2 hours ago
greygarious in Home Cooking

What do you mean by - 2 cups half-and-half?

Half&half is not sold everywhere. It is half whole milk and half light cream so you can DIY if you can't find it. An acceptably rich substitute would be evaporated whole milk straight from the can, which has at least 6.5% fat. That's twice as much as regular milk though less than half&half. I find the two yield about the same result when used in coffee, so I've used them interchangeably without a problem.

about 13 hours ago
greygarious in Home Cooking

Your Top 5 Trader Joe's Products? - 2014

21-Seasoning Salute
12-grain crackers
kouign amann
English cheddar w/caramelized onions
Thomcord grapes and heirloom navel oranges (cheated here because they are each seasonal and not simultaneously)

Five is not enough. Equally essential:
decaf medium roast ground coffee
dried cranberries
just the clusters granolas
soycotash
meatless meatballs
puffed pastry sheets (seasonal)
Szechuan beef and broccoli
masala burgers
scallion pancakes
.....and riesling wines

about 15 hours ago
greygarious in Chains

Sadness

<grain of salt>

Pasta Rocks, or Crazy Jane's? One thread a shill, the other nonsensical chatter. There's a certain car-wreck entertainment value but it is certainly not the substantive cooking/restaurant exchange of ideas/suggestions that initially drew me to the site.

about 15 hours ago
greygarious in Site Talk
1

Pointer to Chains Board MB restocking bargains thread 8/28/14

about 15 hours ago
greygarious in Greater Boston Area

Is anyone going to boycott Market Basket?

PV, I LOVE that - thanks for sharing! I took the liberty of forwarding your first paragraph to the hosts of WGBH's Boston Public Radio, who have been discussing MB a lot.

During my visit to MB in Westford, I took the opportunity to shake the hand of every employee who had one free, in congratulations and to thank them for taking a stand against corporate greed in a larger sense.

about 15 hours ago
greygarious in Greater Boston Area

Strategic buys as Market Basket re-stocks (posted 8/28/14)

I was pleasantly surprised at how much inventory was already back in the new Westford, MA store this afternoon. I had not set foot into a MB since June.

I posted the particulars of that store on the Greater Boston area Boycott thread but wanted to spread the word that there are bargains to be had, probably varying according to store. (Irrelevantly dated) best by Sept 2 large white eggs were FIFTY CENTS a dozen! The 4-packs of Jello Temptations strawberry cheesecake cups, best by Sept 5, were also 50 cents. I am sure there were other quick-sale markdowns that I overlooked. For shoppers with free time on Friday, it's probably worth scouting your local store(s) for those short-dated items that will be good well beyond the label dates.

about 16 hours ago
greygarious in Chains

New almond pastes

I noticed Odense chocolate almond and coconut almond pastes in the supermarket today. Both were in displays that said "new". Not that you couldn't DIY either of these products, but there's something to be said for convenience sometimes. The recipes look quite appealing: http://www.odense.com/

BTW, this isn't the company grasping for free advertising - I've been posting on CH for many years.

about 16 hours ago
greygarious in General Topics

Need Some Advice?

If you are the prime/sole breadwinner, you need to put financial security ahead of your personal fulfillment. Hopefully you can get a part-time or volunteer gig that provides a creative outlet.
Another option, depending on your local laws, is to start a small business on the side, making and selling something you enjoy cooking/baking. The fall season is full of municipal and church fairs/bazaars. Get a booth/table selling homemade *something* and see if it takes off. Most people work for the money, not the gratification. Best of luck in your search for both.

about 17 hours ago
greygarious in Not About Food
1

Is anyone going to boycott Market Basket?

I was at the new Westford store this afternoon. There was a good meat and seafood collection though no fresh chicken. Acorn and butternut squash, and garlic, were the only tenants in produce. There was no milk but a lot of refrigerated non-dairy creamer. About half the bread aisle was stocked. All in all, more stuff than I expected, and what I needed were some packaged items that other stores don't carry, which I was running low on since I boycotted.

TAKE NOTE: They deeply discounted some items that are nearing their sell-by/best by dates, e.g. dozen large white eggs, dated September 2, for FIFTY CENTS! Ditto the 4-packs of Jello Temptations desserts. Shoppers who can spend a bit of time scoping things out may find some great bargains there in the next day or two.

about 18 hours ago
greygarious in Greater Boston Area

How do you like to dine...booth or table?

I was once at an ethnic restaurant, at a table, when a commotion erupted at a nearby booth. Turns out a cockroach had emerged from between the seat and the back. I'd never thought about the increased likelihood of vermin making their homes in booths vs. free-standing chairs and tables. I just read something about people getting bedbug bites in movie theaters. If they can get into theaters on people's clothing and bags, they can get into eateries, too. Again, booth seats being more likely to harbor them than chairs. Booths touch walls, which are also home to pests, more often than tables do.

I have mobility problems. I can't readily slide across a bench seat or stand up on one leg while the other is still trapped under the booth table.

Can I substitute virgin coconut oil for butter in flourless chocolate cake?

I use it instead of butter or other oil when making Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Brownie Mix. Makes it even better. I think you can do the sub, but if you have leftovers, the cake will be very hard when it comes out of the refrigerator, so allow time for it to sit at room temp before serving. I'd pre-slice the leftovers before refrigerating. Coconut oil gets VERY firm when chilled.

1 day ago
greygarious in Home Cooking

Sadness

So glad to hear from you, JF! A virtual scritch behind the ear to you!

1 day ago
greygarious in Site Talk
2

Is anyone going to boycott Market Basket?

A store manager was interviewed on TV this morning. He said the grocery items were pretty well stocked and *some* dairy was in. Meatcutting begins this morning; poultry will take a couple of days. Produce coming in starting this afternoon, and things should be about back to normal this weekend.

Crocheting and food

I belong to a knitting group, but prefer to crochet (which makes me bistitchual). However, unless it's for little kids, I cringe at the cutesie stuff. This will give me nightmares.

Undoing your mistakes is sometimes called "frogging" because "rip-it, rip-it". Speaking of Kermit, here's a toddler-size balaclava I designed and donated to a holiday fundraising sale for a local women's shelter.

New California law allows dogs to dine out

Another reason not to do it: Dogs in cars should be wearing leashes, so that they can be more easily caught if they bolt when the door it opened, or squeeze through an open window, or are spooked. However, INSIDE the car, the leash can be dangerous if someone's not there to intervene. The first evening I worked for a veterinarian, a frantic owner ran in with her small, dead dog. She'd left it in the car while shopping at the supermarket across the street. The leash caught on the hand brake, the dog hopped over the back of the front seat, and hanged itself.

Aug 27, 2014
greygarious in Not About Food

User profile: would you like to see more/different questions and/or mandatory info?

With the suggestion (not mine) of profile self-identification being required for "professional" CH participants having been made this week, I got to thinking about the options for info on the right side of the profile page.

I think general location should be mandatory, since SO many people do not mention their location when they ask questions to which it's pertinent. E.g.: I'm wasting my time suggesting Trader Joe's to someone in Ireland, or making a pot of hearty chowder in December, which is winter to me, to someone who lives in Argentina, where it's summer. If it's on the profile, at least I can check before responding.

I'd like to see a question as to line of work, especially whether the member is/has been employed in the food service industry or in the manufacturing of food, and in what capacity. No business names required. This may help in evaluating the reliability of his/her suggestions, though of course a food server may claim to be a nutritionist.

Other questions:

- If you are a home cook, approximate year you began cooking regularly.

- How many restaurant, take-out, and fast food meals eaten per month.

Personally, I don't think the current drink of choice question is interesting or relevant.

I'd prefer "favorite dish" to go-to dinner party dish. The latter may not be a favorite, but something made because it is simple, or economical, popular, or reliable. I am assuming that means something one would make to serve when entertaining at home, and not what one enjoys when attending a party hosted by others....but the meaning is not totally clear, is it?

Maybe not year of birth, but perhaps decade? Perspectives on many things vary according to general age.

Aug 26, 2014
greygarious in Site Talk

Whither Servorg?

I do not speak Spanish but even *I* know it means "go with cheese" and is a play on "via con dios" (go with God).

Aug 26, 2014
greygarious in Site Talk

What to do with vacation okra

I've never grown it but the first time I bought it (farmer's market) I assumed the larger the better. Ugh! The ones that were 4" and over were totally woody after stewing. 3" was the maximum for good; the inbetweeners were quite chewy but I could get them down.

Aug 26, 2014
greygarious in Home Cooking

Am I the only person on the planet that doesn't "get" Trader Joe's?

The clerk told me they were Ghirardelli, and they also had white chocolate bulk chunks. This was a holiday seasonal
thing, and Ghirardelli decided to price it higher than TJ was willing to accept.

Aug 26, 2014
greygarious in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - August 2014

EM23 wrote "fresh", so no, not cans.

Aug 26, 2014
greygarious in Chains

Vendor Says Market Basket May Be Trying to Sabotage Itself

Right near the heart of MB territory, until Ocean State Job Lot moved into a strip mall near 495, the main space, which was a Heartland when last occupied, IIRC, was vacant for perhaps 20 years. There's no shortage of vacant/available land/space around here. I don't think they'll get as much as they think for the property if the supermarkets are not in full operation.

New recipe, trying tonight, doesn't sound correct?

That's very close to the recipe I have, but I think you may want to add some herbs or a grating of nutmeg to the cream sauce. And a bit of salt to both the filling and the sauce.

Aug 26, 2014
greygarious in Home Cooking

Tell The Chef to Separate My Food

Whoa! Thrill ride in the Wayback Machine! I remember the photos of the Miss Rheingold contestants that were displayed on the transit buses of my Long Island childhood.

Aug 26, 2014
greygarious in Food Media & News

Attention all Trader Joe Shoppers!

Except that's exactly how it's being used, and I was taught it's wrong to read someone else's diary.
Time to unclick the gold star, no?

Aug 26, 2014
greygarious in Chains
1

Tell The Chef to Separate My Food

Flobster! Reminds me of the time a friend was still debating between ordering squid or shrimp when the waitress arrived. Before her brain could catch up with her tongue, she ordered "squimp".

Aug 26, 2014
greygarious in Food Media & News

ISO Middle Eastern Meatball Recipies

Have it your way. IMO, turkey meatballs are invariably unappealing unless the turkey is mixed with a richer meat.

Aug 26, 2014
greygarious in Home Cooking