tim irvine's Profile

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Pulled pork without a smoker - suggestions?

I like to make it in a slow cooker, pull it, pat it dry, toss it in some rub, and cook it a little at a time in a fry pan, making nice crispy bits of carnitas.

Sep 14, 2014
tim irvine in Home Cooking

are you a kitchen collector??

My wife steeped ghost peppers in a salsa with them.

Sep 14, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware

Your Family's Top 10 Favorite Meals

Top ten recent hits:
Steak frites
Pork tenderloin with saffron rice and snow peas heated in butter and oyster sauce
Chicken piccata with risotto and asparagus
Thin pork chops with roasted peppers and barley
Shrimp grits
M and C
Braised short ribs with steamed fingerling potatoes
Paparadelle Bolognese
Burgers (duh)
SOS

Sep 13, 2014
tim irvine in Home Cooking

RIP VIII

And according to the sign on the door. They say they are looking for new quarters, but I lost faith in that notion when Mike's pub decamped.

Sep 13, 2014
tim irvine in Austin

You're leaving Austin for good, take one taco with you and tell us why.

I'd take Angie's carnitas tacos because they were my first encounter with really good tacos and I love her tortillas.

Sep 13, 2014
tim irvine in Austin

Is pasta making just time and practice?

I use half AP and half semolina and dust liberally with more AP as I roll it thinner and thinner.

Sep 12, 2014
tim irvine in Home Cooking

Tabasco substitute?

I like Cholula when a little vinegar taste is ok and Sriracha when a little sweet overtone is ok. Neither adds much heat. I love Melinda's habanero.

Sep 12, 2014
tim irvine in General Topics

Cheap Beef Meals

No idea if you can get these or, if, if they are cheap, but historically they have been regarded as lesser cuts:

Skirt steak, hanger steak, or flatiron...the secret to all three, IMHO, is to cook them no more than to medium rare. They get tough if cooked more. I like to pan sear and deglaze with a little red wine and plenty of salt and pepper to make a pan sauce. They also make lovely teriyaki or fajitas.

Eye of round steak is nice pan seared, heavily peppered, and hit with a squeeze of lemon.

Save a little of each roast, mix a couple and mince for use in a pasta sauce. My fave is minced beef and pork done in a pseudo Bolognese.

I like to cut a bottom round for rolling and spread with a mirepoix. Add duxelles if you have the shrooms. Roast.

Who doesn't love braised short ribs. I save my vegetable scraps for making broth and braise in that and add a little wine.

Pulled pot roast is of course lovely as pot roast but it also is awesome in enchiladas or tossed in BBQ sauce and served on a bun with slaw.

Sep 12, 2014
tim irvine in Home Cooking

Recipe Suggestions During Kitchen Remodel

I love beans done in the slow cooker, especially black beans. You could add rice towards the end, or, my preference, barley. If you have a blender, cold soups are easy and healthy. They go way beyond gazpacho. I am very fond of cold curried avocado soup. I see no reason you couldn't do tagines in a slow cooker or electric skillet...toss in chicken or lamb, onions, peppers, broth, spice...simmer a long time...add fruit near the end. You could toss in couscous, too. If you get a grill, I love grilled eggplants, layered with a fresh tomato puttanesca (made in the electric skillet, of course) and mozzarella. If I were going to add one weapon to your arsenal it would be either a grill or a Breville oven, which really does bake and broil well and will hold a pizza.

Sep 12, 2014
tim irvine in Home Cooking
1

Best Chef's Knife?

First of all, you definitely have company on this board!

The knife in your photo is a Thiers Issard, logo being the elephant and four stars. Yours looks like the model half an inch shorter than mine. They have them on a The Best Things, all the way up to a twelve inch chef knife.

I am totally with you on the connection between certain old tools, the cook, the process, and the result. I can make bread a dozen ways, but only kneading it in my big Mason Cash bowl fulfills me. The same sort of sensibility carries over into almost everything I do. Every twenty years my clothing is "in" again!

Oh, and I've written for years with a Pelikan fountain pen.

Sep 10, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware

Is a vintage Lodge cast iron skillet better than a new one??

A) I am not a cast iron expert, although I grew up with it and have been using a Wagner for 39 years.
B) the older CI does seem smoother.
C) I concluded several years ago that Heavy a French steel pans are smooth, easier to season, and have the benefit of a longer handle. So my CI languishes and the DeBuyer Au Carbone has all the fun.
D). It does make a difference to start with a smoother surface.

Sep 09, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware

What kind of vinegars do you keep on hand?

Currently I have:
Active in their crocks, red wine and white wine
Store bought: balsamic, Sherry, cider, malt, rice (sweetened and unsweetened)...and a bottle of white vinegar (unopened) and a gallon of agricultural strength vinegar, my favorite weed killer (seriously).

Sep 08, 2014
tim irvine in Home Cooking

Best Chef's Knife?

Like this? If so, it is a Sabatier (Thiers Issard) Nogent. They have them, along with your beloved SS clones, on The Best Things.

Sep 08, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware

Best Chef's Knife?

If it is stainless, I am impressed. My old Sabatiers are carbon. They may not sparkle, but they are sharp and easy to maintain with a gentle swipe on a fairly smooth steel before each use. I have some newer Thiers Issards I got from The Best Things, and I find the quality very similar to my main knife acquired in the early seventies. Since the OP likes heavier knives, I'd stay away from the Nogents if I were to go the Sabatier route. Personally, I like the lighter knives.

Sep 07, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware

Can I cook tomato sauce in my tin-lined copper pot?

I use tin lined copper to cook most things that don't require super high temperatures, including tomato sauces, things deglazed with wine, vinegar, brandy etc. if cost were no object I can only think of a few pans where another material would be better.

Sep 01, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware

how to use standard pizza oven? what temperature and time should i set for baking pizza?

I tend not to rely on times for pizza, especially if doing several. Other than a regular oven on its highest setting, which I assume doesn't approximate the pizza oven, my only high heat experience is using a pizza stone on a Weber, somewhere up around 800 F. Some are done in three minutes. Some take five or six.

Sep 01, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware

Cooks Illus. April 2010 Issue Tests Staub dutch oven Against Le Creuset

Ever since the advent of casual Friday I hear that Thais are a thing of the past.

Seriously, I agree with you. I am lucky to have a lot of cookware, chiefly from France, but it is neat to see more affordable options of very nice stuff.

Aug 31, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware

What coffee to use in my Bialetti espresso maker?

I am super picky about coffee and eschew canned coffee in general, but La Llave is cheap and rocks in a Bialetti.

Aug 31, 2014
tim irvine in General Topics

What should I put on my fresh sourdough bread?

Another vote for French toast. I sprinkle mine with cinnamon sugar which crisps in the cooking oil, preferably bacon fat.

I grew up on Larrabaru's with room temperature butter...pretty perfect.

Aug 31, 2014
tim irvine in Home Cooking

Zagat's Top 10 Austin Burgers

Amen!

Aug 31, 2014
tim irvine in Austin

Absolute Tomatoey-est Tasting Tomato Sauce You Will EVER Eat

Great recipe and thanks for reinforcing the importance of the gel. Just about anything I cook involving tomatoes the two key components are roasting and using the whole tomato, except of four settle nasty navel, which goes in the bag of trimmings for broth. Very well written, too.

Aug 31, 2014
tim irvine in Home Cooking

Growing Up In D.C./Balt: Who Else Remembers....

I remember going to Gifford's in the early fifties...fast forward to high school and it was Top's, Little Tavern, Hot Shoppes, and Arnold's Hofbrau. Egg salad at Woolworth's. The Burger Chef on Glebe a Road...three burgers, three fries, a root beer, and change for a buck. Who doesn't remember DeMatha beating a Power?!?

Help please with first pork shoulder

Sorry, inarticulate moi. I use a smoker at 14 hours. So the offering of that time assumes that approach. To me a pork shoulder is big enough and takes long enough to be sort of a bother to smoke, unlike brisket which doesn't require me to get up in the dark to start it.

Aug 30, 2014
tim irvine in Home Cooking

Caneles

Thanks. I am going to give it a twirl in a nice heavy muffin pan. Worst case I am out the ingredients, and it takes me FFE to go through a bottle of rum.

Aug 30, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware

Zagat's Top 10 Austin Burgers

My biggest gripe about burgers in Austin is usually the way they are cooked, inconsistently. I loved Phil's the first time. The burger was medium to medium rare. Ditto for Wholly Cow. On return trips they were medium to well. I also hate it when they use self destructing buns, like Huts or Hills (years ago but the memories linger of a handful of mayonnaisey lettuce and a corner of bun...yuck). So I usually opt for home for a top quality burger and hit local spots for thin patty food...P. Terry, Hat Creek, and my new fave, Downtown Burger.

Aug 30, 2014
tim irvine in Austin

Help please with first pork shoulder

Assuming you are using a smoker, I usually go around 14 hours at just under 200 F. I also like the Dr. Pepper slow cooker method for about seven hours. I have never done one in the oven.

Aug 30, 2014
tim irvine in Home Cooking

What's new in your kitchen?

Another vote for electric kettles. Our Russell Hobbs is pushing thirty years. If it were to die I'd go on eBay and look for another just like it. It replaced, many years ago, a pricey Simplex. I like it way better.

As for what is new in my kitchen, this morning I went to the restaurant supply place and got an eight quart plastic tub. Then I went to the farmers' market and got pickling cucumbers. I am going to make a tub of salt fermented half sours. Then I plan to tackle kimchi.

Aug 30, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware

95%: Cookware

Probably, but it would be more work, less fun, and in some cases a less perfect result. The omelette would stick.

Aug 30, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware

Tin-lined copper + Caramel sauce= whoopsy?

Good hypothesis. Of course, when I am making caramel, that is pretty much all I am doing, but maybe some day I will tackle oeufs a la niege or croquembouche with spun sugar decoration. It astounds me to think back to the fifties when people made such things and served them as dessert with a meal that also included iceberg lettuce salad and frozen vegetables.

Aug 30, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware

Caneles

I thought about posting this on another board to gain input from the participants on the canele threads (Cynsa, Pilinut, Souschef, Trewq, etc.) but they are so deep in their art that I assume they have already amassed plenty of copper canele molds, but this is, after all, a cookware topic. Does anyone have any experience with using other vessels for cooking things akin to true caneles? Darioles? Ramekins? Muffin pans? How were the results?

Aug 29, 2014
tim irvine in Cookware