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ISO Tips re: Creating a Ginger Frosting

OP here... The idea of ginger essence really appeals to me... So thank you for this idea! Also love the idea of infusing ginger into milk or cream to create ginger flavor. I have never made a flour frosting though I keep hearing about how great these are. I can't seem to get past the thought of using flour to frost a cake--it just doesn't compute. But I'd like to try it. I had already thought of adding candied ginger which I love...My ideal would be a rich, creamy gingery frosting that is not overly sweet. In addition to gingerbread, I'd love to use it as a cookie filling for ginger-molasses cookies... At any rate, thanks everyone for your great suggestions!

Dec 15, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

ISO Tips re: Creating a Ginger Frosting

I am CRAZY about ginger and have often wondered if I could come up with a truly gingery frosting I could use to amp up my favorite gingerbread (the fresh gingerbread recipe from the Chow site btw). Has anyone tried to create a frosting with this flavor? I am not about subtlety, so I really want to be able to taste the ginger... I was thinking maybe the concentrated ginger juice from the Ginger People would be a place to start... but really, I have no idea. I love cream cheese frosting for this particular cake...but am open to buttercream ideas as well.

Thanks in advance!

Dec 13, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

Pumpkin Schmumpkin: What About Cranberries?

OP here. I just happened to spot a cranberry pie recipe that was just posted on smitten kitchen: http://smittenkitchen.com/ an all cranberry pie with a pecan streusel to be exact. It is not chocolate and cranberry which I had originally been pining for, but it looks gorgeous and I just may try it.

Brooklyn Source for Russ & Daughters-Esque Chopped Liver?

Thanks, Mike R. I am familiar with Eagle Provisions and it is good to know they may have it there. Peck's sounds like an interesting option as well. The thing with Shelsky's is the price--I think it may be more expensive than Russ & Daughter's--so it is good to know about other possibilities.

Nov 20, 2014
brooklynsabra in Outer Boroughs

Brooklyn Source for Russ & Daughters-Esque Chopped Liver?

That is a great suggestion. I know they recently(ish) expanded.... I will check it out. Thanks so much.

I had also been thinking maybe Fairway...or Mill Basin Deli...but the latter is quite far from us and I wasn't sure if Fairway would come close to my beloved Russ & Daughters...

I once had chopped liver at Sammy's Roumanian on the Lower East Side and if memory serves, it included gribines aka crispy chicken skin cracklings and shredded black radish and it was heaven; by far the best thing I tried there.... I don't eat chopped liver often, but when the craving hits, it must be appeased. And we have some Kossar's Bialys in our freezer just begging for a schmear of the good stuff.

At any rate, thanks again for the Shelsky's rec. I wasn't sure if I'd get any suggestions at all, so I really appreciate it and will post if I wind up trying it.

Nov 19, 2014
brooklynsabra in Outer Boroughs

Brooklyn Source for Russ & Daughters-Esque Chopped Liver?

I am crazy for the chopped liver from the Lower East Side's legendary appetizing store, Russ & Daughters. It's got this strong hint of sweetness from beautifully caramelized onions; it's chunky; it's earthy; it's rich. It is everything I want in chopped liver. I got some once at Zabar's and it wasn't the same, but I digress. The Russ & Daughters' version is delicious, but I absolutely hate the mayhem and wait on line there, especially when that is often all I want to order. Is there anywhere in Brooklyn that even comes close???? (I may break down and make my own, but I'd rather not).

Thanks in advance!

Nov 18, 2014
brooklynsabra in Outer Boroughs

Pumpkin Schmumpkin: What About Cranberries?

I replied below to Bugsey34, but I see you recommended this pie too...so thank you, antimony

Nov 18, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

Pumpkin Schmumpkin: What About Cranberries?

Rstuart, I love cream cheese pound cake! Your recipe looks like it cries out for a glaze though....Everything tastes better with glaze, but that's me. Hmmm. I think I may need to figure out a glaze for this...

Btw, cookinglight has this absolutely amazing recipe for glazed grapefruit poundcake that I cannot recommend highly enough: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/grape...

I made it last winter and it was one of my all-time favorite things I have ever baked and I love to bake. I wouldn't say the end result tastes like grapefruit, but it's citrusy and soooo good. Not cranberries, but fantastic. And I tend to be skeptical re: lighter recipes when it comes to baking--but I was really drawn to this one for some reason and am so glad I tried it.

Nov 18, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

Pumpkin Schmumpkin: What About Cranberries?

Thanks for the Nantucket Cranberry Pie recipe, Bugsey34. I love that it contains almond extract, which always adds a certain something if you ask me... and that it was adapted from Laurie Colwin, whose writing / recipes I have always enjoyed. The Pioneer Woman's recipes are often so full of butter--and not all of us live on ranches to work it off--but this recipe does look like it may be worth the calories.

Also love the sugared cranberries on brie idea. Thanks again!

Nov 18, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

Pumpkin Schmumpkin: What About Cranberries?

I have made those blueberry crumb bars from smitten kitchen. One summer, I brought them to every single picnic we went to and people went nuts for them. I personally thought they were a bit sweet and bland, but everyone who tried them-especially kids--could not get enough. I love the idea of switching up this recipe with cranberries, orange zest and ginger. Do I even need to add more sugar to balance the tartness of the cranberries? (since I thought the original was plenty sweet).

ps...meant to reply to hotoynoodle, but not sure that I did....

Nov 18, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

So What Dishes do you top with a Runny Poached Egg?

Poaching eggs in seasoned milk and then creating a bechamel from the remaining milk...great idea! Thanks!

Nov 18, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

So What Dishes do you top with a Runny Poached Egg?

OP here...I love the idea of repurposing leftover pizza with poached egg. Breakfast of champions for sure!

Nov 18, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

So What Dishes do you top with a Runny Poached Egg?

Interesting idea re: the poached egg over savory oatmeal. And from Martha Stewart no less...

Nov 18, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

Pumpkin Schmumpkin: What About Cranberries?

I have seen this recipe. Great to know it is as delcious as it looks!

Nov 18, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

Pumpkin Schmumpkin: What About Cranberries?

OP here... I have made the Starbuck's bars for my husband's office before--and I am pretty sure they used the dried version of cranberries... They are great, but I was thinking in terms of fresh cranberries, which I should have specified. But thanks for the rec.

Nov 18, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

Pumpkin Schmumpkin: What About Cranberries?

OP here...I actually remember making these for a holiday party at my son's school a few years back--just for the novelty of it for kids. I love the idea of garnishing a chocolate cheesecake with them.

Nov 18, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

So What Dishes do you top with a Runny Poached Egg?

A general thanks to everyone for your replies so far.... and to chefj and also divadmas, I consider myself a fairly well-rounded cook, but have not heard of some of the dishes you mentioned...including Loco Moco, and Maultasche mit Spinac Sahne and Mie Goreng Tek-Tek. Also... I just came across a few recipes that do poached eggs over a combo of Israeli cous cous and greens which I may try next since I have a ton (of Israeli cous cous) in my cupboard with no current purpose. Thanks sunshine842 for the salad idea. I am now remembering an escarole with lardons and croutons salad (with poached egg on top) that we used to love at this restaurant many years ago...

Nov 17, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

So What Dishes do you top with a Runny Poached Egg?

In a pinch, I have been known to make curried lentils, either with brown or green lentils-- or red which turns out out to be more of a puree-- and then I'll serve a poached egg over each serving. Sometimes I'll serve this over greens with some warmed naan bread. So I got to thinking that surely a ton of other dishes taste better with a runny, poached egg on top... What are your favorites?

Pumpkin Schmumpkin: What About Cranberries?

I love pumpkin as much as the next girl...or maybe the one after that...since my favorite fall ingredient is cranberries. Especially when it comes to baking. This glazed cranberry-orange bread is one of my favorites:
http://www.thecomfortofcooking.com/20...

I also used to make this cake around this time every year: http://www.globalgourmet.com/food/ild...
It is a pumpkin-cranberry upside down cake that totally encapsulates fall. It is wonderful and in fact, I think I will make it for the holidays.

So with all this said, I would love to add some more cranberry dessert recipes to my arsenal. Even better, if you have a recipe for a chocolate-cranberry dessert you love I would be thrilled. Perhaps a tart or cake? I have always imagined that these 2 ingredients would complement each other big time.

Many Thanks in Advance!

Nov 17, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking

What are you baking these days? November 2014 edition (part one)! [old]

I just made pumpkin-filled oatmeal creme pies from Sally's Baking Addiction, a recipe blog I have made several items from. I have had a couple recipes that did not work for me, but most have been big successes in our house! These were a definite hit, like elevated Little Debbie Oatmeal Pies with a cream cheeese-pumpkin spice filling:

http://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2012...

Nov 17, 2014
brooklynsabra in Home Cooking
1

What type of cuisine do you NOT like?

I used to hate Indian cuisine and then when I was pregnant, I found myself craving it for some bizarre reason and I have never looked back. While I wouldn't say it is now my favorite cuisine, I have become especially fond of Southern Indian vegetarian food and I love all the various breads, dosas, puris etc. I think the thing with Indian food is when it is bad, it is truly horrid--while even bad Italian food (think Olive Garden!) is still palatable to a lot of people--including me. And I also think that at least some of the people who claim to hate Indian food have never had it prepared the way it should be. I have a list of friends I am convinced would love Indian food if I could just introduce them to the right restaurant.

But this is a total digression. I would have to say that I too, am not crazy about Ethiopian food. I have eaten it both in Chicago and D.C. both of which have strong Ethiopian communities I believe and no..just no. But maybe I just have not been to the right place, I suppose. Another cuisine I have had negative experiences with is Filipino. I just couldn't get past the sizzling sissig which included crispy pig ears--and was something we decided to try just for the heck of it.

Ridiculously Downhill Alert: Damascus Bakery

I have been going to Damascus several times a year for the past 15 years or so. I think my connection to the place is emotional more than anything else (there are really so few Brooklyn spots left that elicit that sort of response for me). My kid went through a long and wonderful phase of being crazy for their spinach pies, which we would stock up on and put in his lunch box, offer as a snack between little league innings, and in a pinch, we'd even serve them for breakfast. Imho, this spinach pie is one of all time best portable Brooklyn kids' snacks. (the mini rice balls from the now sadly departed but never forgotten Joe's Superette will always have a place in my heart as the absolute ulimate Brooklyn kids' snack, but I digress.) At any rate, my kid eventually od'd on the spinach pies so we had to stop getting them for awhile. Now though, he will still happily eat them on occasion--and Mom and Dad enjoy them too.

Like many others we are fans of the smoky baba from Damascus as well, but not the chummus. Also like many others, we love the spicy chummus from Sahadi, though I must confess, we have recently begun buying the Whole Foods brand chummus which is almost shockingly good. I know. I know. It is blasphemy! But I am married to an Israeli and we both pride ourselves on knowing our chummus. And this is pretty good. Yes, I prefer Sahadi's version, but the reality is it tends to get "fizzy" after a few days so you need to eat it right away. The WF version (I *think* the only preservative is citric acid) will keep for quite some time--which is a huge plus for us.

We also always stock up on the soft triangle pitas--which are the perfect size for slathering chummus. Our very Mediterranean-spirited kid often eats this with tomato and olives for breakfast.

All of this being said, I have had a couple negative experiences with the place, the worst being bringing what turned out to be some very, very bad Kanaffe that I brought as a hostess gift a year or so ago. Luckily, the baklava was at least decent, which we brought as well. Fwiw, we love Arayissi in Bay Ridge for its amazing pistachio and walnut m'a'mouls (sp?) And for baklava, we love the wonderful Greek bakery, Artopolis in Queens. As for Kanaffe, I think the version they make at Tanoreen is fantastic (even though it has gone downhill imho re: some of its other dishes).

My other negative experience with Damascus involved a Deli platter with various dips, salads, pita etc. that I bought to bring to a school event. It was just very mediocre. Not bad, but not good either. If I had money to burn, I'd definitely choose the various salads and dips from the Family Store in Bay Ridge instead for an event like that. Every time I visit this place, I wind up asking myself why I don't go more regularly. And then I get the bill and remember how expensive it is, sadly.

Also, finally, like others, we like the family who runs Damascus and enjoy kibbitzing with them when we visit. It is all part of the emotional connection I described.

Post Traumatic TJ's Stress: Please Help me Make Better PIcks Next Time

Has anyone tried the Korean bulgogi beef? (I think it is thinly sliced and pre-marinated). I have heard it makes good Korean-style tacos or is good served over rice with kimchi...But I have had some not so great experiences with the pre-marinated meats from TJ's--and am leary to try this. I would also need to make it on the stove-top rather than grill it... Just wondering if anyone has any feedback about this product...Thanks!

Nov 14, 2014
brooklynsabra in Chains

Post Traumatic TJ's Stress: Please Help me Make Better PIcks Next Time

I wanted to like the Tempura Chicken, believe me! I could see where adding some heat via chili flakes would help balance out the sweetness of the sauce--so that is a good idea. But I am still sticking with the Mandarin Orange Chicken.

Thanks so far to all btw for your suggestions! I think I am going to create a running list for next time. And thanks to the poster who provided those links to other threads. Those were helpful as well.

Nov 13, 2014
brooklynsabra in Chains
1

Post Traumatic TJ's Stress: Please Help me Make Better PIcks Next Time

Hi Linguafood...Thanks...I have scrolled through some of those TJ's threads and they are indeed useful in terms of general products that are great @ TJ's. But I would specifically love to know what TJ's offers re: quick and easy dinners I can throw together while my husband is away. If there is a thread targeted soley to that, it would be great because otherwise it can feel overwhelming to sort through all the various product recs.

Nov 12, 2014
brooklynsabra in Chains

Post Traumatic TJ's Stress: Please Help me Make Better PIcks Next Time

So my husband is currently out of town for work. Since I am typically a hardcore from-scratch cook 5-6 nights per week, I like to use his trips as an opportunity to take a break from dinner prep. This usually includes taking my kid out to dinner a couple nights, a couple nights of super simple cooking like steak with steamed broccolini and frozen Alexa fries... and a few frozen meal mash-ups--for lack of a better way to describe it--from Trader Joe's.

Up until now one of my picks has always been TJ's Mandarin Orange Chicken which I'd serve over steamed broccoli, often skipping the rice. My husband is not at all into eating this stuff so for me and my kid, it was always a treat. This time I tried to mix things up by going with the Tempura Chicken instead. I found it really disappointing! Yes, the chicken seemed to be white meat chicken...but it was overwhelmed with breading and not especially moist..and the sauce was overly sweet and gloppy. I threw half of it away which I never do with the Mandarin Orange Chicken--which I will never forsake again!

I also got the frozen Chimichurri Rice which I paired with TJ's Roasted Garlic Sausage and I steamed some "Power to the Greens" (I think that's what they are called). The sausage was fine, if a bit too salty, and the greens are nice to have on hand. But the rice was full of these anemic looking thawed out tomato chunks and had these bursts of spice (maybe I didn't stir it enough?) that just didn't do it for us--my kid was especially not fond of those anemic tomatoes (and he is actually not a picky eater).

The best thing we had was some refrigerated Pesto Tortelloni, but even with that, I feel like I could have made a better pick from the other refrigerated pastas. I also have some Bolognese-filled Ravioli from TJ's in the fridge and am hoping that perhaps that will be the sleeper of the bunch. But really, I would love some recs for TJ's dinner options for next time.

Thanks in Advance.

Nov 12, 2014
brooklynsabra in Chains

Believe It Or Not...ISO of Good Eats in Times Square Area...

ps...As part of our K-town excursion, we stopped at Paris Baguette and let the kids pick out a few different desserts. My kid got a pseudo-cronut--which was horribly disappointing--just really, really heavy and greasy! I have had the Dough'ssant from Chickalicious Dessert Club in the East Village and LOVED it, so this was a huge letdown (I have yet to try the real thing). We also got a pound cake of some kind flavored with green tea. I liked this a lot better,though the thing I always appreciate about Asian desserts is the subtle hand when it comes to sweetness. And this was surpisingly sweet and needed more green tea flavor imho. But it was nice and moist and light tasting. I have gotten other things here that I liked better, though I cannot recall specifically what they were. Oh yes, I got a cannelle that I loved. Does anyone have any suggestions re: what to try at Paris Baguette on our next visit?

Nov 10, 2014
brooklynsabra in Manhattan

Believe It Or Not...ISO of Good Eats in Times Square Area...

Yes, Hometown's brisket has been amazingly tender and juicy on my visits there. So I hope it will be for you as well, ZaZa!

Nov 10, 2014
brooklynsabra in Manhattan
1

Believe It Or Not...ISO of Good Eats in Times Square Area...

Fwiw, my friend turned out to be more intrepid than I gave her credit for and was willing to walk to K-town so we wound up at Turntable Mad For Chicken, which was suggested here by at least one poster I believe...And I had actually been there once before for lunch and enjoyed it..(I did seriously consider Hell's Chicken, but K-town's close proximity to our subway stop to get home trumped that idea) At any rate, it turned out to be a great choice for us. Not the best "KFC" I have ever tried (for me that honor goes to Unidentified Flying Chickens in Queens--which glazes the chicken more generously) but it totally hit the spot and was a revelation for our friends and great "kid food." We also got some edamame grilled in pork fat which I remembered loving from my previous visit-and they were another hit My least favorite thing was the fried dumplings--they seemed to be fried in a batter and maybe I am more of a traditionalist since I wasn't into the whole batter concept.

The ambience was lively but maybe not quite what I was wanting for a couple of tween boys. More like big groups of twenty and thirty something singles. probably hung over from the Saturday night before. And the dining space got pretty dark. Service was also very, very flaky, though sweet. All in all, it was fine for tweens and teens though perhaps a bit much for younger kids.

I would love to try Gyu Kaku next time I am in the area for an activity like this...or Ippudo. So thanks so much for those recs in particular; also for Hell's Chicken.

And yeah, I am spoiled re: my relative proximity to Hometown BBQ in Redhook--though I have to confess that my favorite thing there is not the ribs but rather the pepper rubbed brisket. No other brisket I have tried in NYC comes close.

Nov 10, 2014
brooklynsabra in Manhattan

Believe It Or Not...ISO of Good Eats in Times Square Area...

Thanks again, everyone! Lots to contemplate... Gyu Kaku sounds kind of fun for kids...and I have always wanted to try Ippudo. We often go out for ramen in Brooklyn and it's a definite kid favorite. I think a lot will depend on how willing my Mom friend is to schlep for food.

Nov 08, 2014
brooklynsabra in Manhattan