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FitMom4Life's Profile

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Can you freeze chopped onions?

I sure hope so. I've been freezing chopped onions for years.

Aug 20, 2015
FitMom4Life in General Topics

Awful tasting real maple syrup - what the heck?

Yeah I love to bake, mostly for special occasions but my BF likes to take my baked goodies into work so I am always trying different things. Maple is a flavor that I love, as does he. We used to get the maple candies when we were kids, and we loved them. In fact Betty Crocker came out with two new mixes last year - Maple Brown Sugar Cookies, and Maple Brown Sugar cake. They were both outrageously good.

Aug 19, 2015
FitMom4Life in General Topics

SPAM

I LOVE Spam. I don't eat it anymore just because I have cut out a lot of unhealthy stuff out of my diet. And I live alone, so I'd not buy something like that that I had to finish by myself. Now, when my son is home from college? Hell yeah.

Aug 19, 2015
FitMom4Life in General Topics

Awful tasting real maple syrup - what the heck?

Yep. Pretty sure, now, that I simply am not of fan of the real thing. Of course now I have all this damn maple syrup to use up, so I guess I'll have to find a few more recipes!

And no, the syrup is not old, nor has it been stored improperly. Guess we've just become accustomed to the cheap stuff. And we freaking LOVE maple donuts, but agree they are probably not made with the real thing.

And for the person who said they've never heard of maple cake, seriously? There's a ton of recipes out there. Here are two.

http://www.food.com/recipe/maple-syru...

http://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/mapl...

Aug 19, 2015
FitMom4Life in General Topics

Awful tasting real maple syrup - what the heck?

Grade B is what I have. FWIW, they have actually done away with that A/B grade now. The newest stuff is now all grade A, and then graded by color.

Aug 18, 2015
FitMom4Life in General Topics

Awful tasting real maple syrup - what the heck?

I have had real maple syrup, years ago, I'm certain. And I am pretty sure I thought it was yummy. But we always just use the imitation stuff as we don't use it that much, and lately not at all. My BF would rather go to WaffleHouse for his waffles and that is fine with me. (And I try to not even eat pancakes or waffles anymore so the syrup just doesn't much matter to me.)

Anyway...so my BF just got a huge jug of the real thing from a friend of his that was just up north for a visit. Since he doesn't use it at home really at all, he gave it to me. And since I don't really use it either, I figured I would bake something with it. So I made a maple cake, using 2 cups of the stuff. When I was pouring the batter into the pans, it just didn't smell "mapley", so I tried it, and there was no maple flavor at all. I actually wound up baking the cake, and then throwing it out as I was making it for work and just thought it was a sub-par flavor.

So I got curious, and I sniffed the syrup, and it smelled, well, wrong somehow. Not "bad", as in spoiled, but not like maple syrup. Nothing like maple syrup. Almost had a chemically smell. So I tried it, from a spoon. It tasted no better than it smelled, and honestly I cannot imagine anyone actually LIKING that taste. My BF tried it and had the same reaction. So I google the stuff, and read that Trader Joes has really good maple syrup, so I went there and bought some (for $13!). I figured this had to be good, so I would compare it to the other. Well, it was just a hair less objectionable. I mean, only a little "less bad". What the hell? I don't understand. Neither jug is expired, both are over a year away from the "best by" date.

This is really perplexing, so I went to Fresh Market today, and bought a bottle of their maple syrup, (brand was Highland Sugarworks), opened it and tried it, and it was pretty good. Then I bought a bottle of the Fresh Market brand, and it was more like the other stuff, quite different from the Highland stuff.

So I am really confused here. I figured that all "real" maple syrup would taste quite yummy, especially the Trader Joe stuff. But it isn't, not at all.

Anyone else have this experience? Could it be that I have lost my taste for the stuff by only using the imitation syrup?

Aug 17, 2015
FitMom4Life in General Topics

Boneless beef short ribs....like Texas de Brazil? Any ideas?

Any thoughts on this, anyone? How about using the crockpot instead of the oven?

Jun 22, 2015
FitMom4Life in Home Cooking

Boneless beef short ribs....like Texas de Brazil? Any ideas?

Well I braised them last night, following a recipe from all recipes.com (sherry braised short ribs). Unfortunately this was after work and I just didn't have enough time ( I don't know why I even try to cook during the week!!!). And too, I think I was afraid of overcooking and making them tough. I didn't use sherry ( I am not crazy about that flavor that it adds ) so I just used broth. I took them out of the oven at 10 pm, after 1 1/5 hours. These were small boneless short ribs, only a pound, and I just couldn't see cooking them for 2.5 hours at 350. So, I turned the oven down to 250, and took them out 1.5 hours later.

I know I know...so I didn't follow the recipe and they didn't turn out like I hoped. But, the flavor, I have to say, was marvelous. They were really quite good, but just were not that melt-in-your-mouth tender that I was looking for.

I want to try again, when I have more time. So, thoughts? Even with just a pound of ribs, does it make sense to cook them at 350 for 2.5 hours?

Jun 02, 2015
FitMom4Life in Home Cooking

Boneless beef short ribs....like Texas de Brazil? Any ideas?

Ah. Yes I guess that would be right then. They definitely did have a bit of char to them so I was just thinking grill. I will check out the braising thing. Definitely new territory for me. Thank you!

Jun 01, 2015
FitMom4Life in Home Cooking

Boneless beef short ribs....like Texas de Brazil? Any ideas?

Soooo...how many hours would you think? I will check out that forum. Thanks.

Jun 01, 2015
FitMom4Life in Home Cooking

Boneless beef short ribs....like Texas de Brazil? Any ideas?

Its a gas grill, but I have a small Smoky Joe as well.

Jun 01, 2015
FitMom4Life in Home Cooking

Boneless beef short ribs....like Texas de Brazil? Any ideas?

I ate at Texas de Brazil last weekend and was treated to some of the best beef I have ever eaten in my life. I LOVED the beef ribs that they served, they were absolutely delicious, and so incredibly tender the meat almost melted in my mouth. So, I am obsessed with attempting to duplicate, if even possible, this sort of thing at home. I was at the store and noticed a package of boneless short ribs, so I bought them. I have googled the whole Brazilian ribs cooking, and I know they use a cut called the short plate, so I am hoping that I bought the right thing. However I have not been able to find a recipe that would not use a crockpot or a lot of liquid, to cook these things up really tender. I am a decent cook, but frankly most of my beef gets cooked on the grill. Nos sure that is the way to go for these ribs, but I am hoping someone out there can offer advice!

Thanks.

Jun 01, 2015
FitMom4Life in Home Cooking

Mother kicked out of restaurant for changing baby's diaper at table.

Holy CRAP. Yeah that mom is rather ignorant. I would have complained and in fact left the restaurant.

Pantry storage: flour, sugar, etc.

I have used the Tupperware round canisters for years. I don't keep them on the counter - they stay in a cabinet. Yes - totally ant-proof.

Aug 05, 2014
FitMom4Life in Cookware

Your Top 5 Trader Joe's Products? [OLD]

Oh the pizza sauce is absolutely a favorite of mine. And my mom's as well. I always have 2 or 3 jars of it on hand!

Feb 18, 2014
FitMom4Life in Chains

Convince me I didn't cook undercooked chicken.

"To me, dry = cooked."

Properly cooked chicken is always moist. Dry means it is overcooked.

Feb 18, 2014
FitMom4Life in Home Cooking

Your Top 5 Trader Joe's Products? [OLD]

I think it was the Tomato Basil version. It really was very thin and not very good. I love PNO Sockerooni!

Feb 18, 2014
FitMom4Life in Chains

Your Top 5 Trader Joe's Products? [OLD]

You know I just tried that marinara sauce this past weekend and I was really disappointed. It was very thin and not much flavor. One of the only things I have ever been disappointed with from TJ's.

Feb 18, 2014
FitMom4Life in Chains

cast iron pans are great - REALLY?

Weird. I fry bacon in mine ALL the time. I never have anything stick to the bottom of the pan. Sounds like your pan really isn't seasoned properly.

Aug 21, 2013
FitMom4Life in Cookware

Breville toaster oven what size?

I just wipe mine out. I have always cleaned it, from the start, so I never got any film on it. Mine is shiny clean. Maybe you should use a brillo pad?

Aug 21, 2013
FitMom4Life in Cookware

Ice Cream, What Flavors are Your Favorite and Worst?

Talenti Sea Salt Caramel. A little bit of heaven.

Aug 21, 2013
FitMom4Life in General Topics

Why are chicken breasts so HUGE?

Again, I don't see the problem. Take a cleaver and cut the breast right in half, not making it thinner...just chop it from the top...in half. Stuff that. Problem solved. I've done this for YEARS.

My second question would be....why not save (or freeze) your leftovers? My gosh, if I expected to eat every morsel of everything that I cooked, I would be 300 pounds. :-)

Aug 21, 2013
FitMom4Life in General Topics

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

This! Yes, specialty items, exactly. I have a list of certain things that I always go for. But most times I go, I try something new, and that gets added to my list!!

Aug 21, 2013
FitMom4Life in Chains
1

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

Must be. I love the place. Much less inexpensive that normal grocery stores, and they have such great frozen dishes and baking mixes and pizza sauce....and everything. Awesome awesome store.

Aug 21, 2013
FitMom4Life in Chains

Corn on the cob TOO sweet!

Oh HELL no. I love love LOVE sweet corn. I could eat it until it'scoming out of my ears! I can eat it right in the field, and have done so many times. Add butter salt and pepper...lots or pepper, and it's dish for a king!

Aug 21, 2013
FitMom4Life in General Topics

Corn on the cob TOO sweet!

Oh HELL no. I love love LOVE sweet corn. I could eat it until it'scoming out of my ears!

I always feel like I am getting ripped off at restaurants

Nope. That's why I don't eat out very often!!

Aug 21, 2013
FitMom4Life in General Topics

Why are chicken breasts so HUGE?

What a funny post. Why is a large size an issue? Just cut the breast in half! I freeze my chicken breasts, take out 2 or 3 at a time to cook, and then eat from that all week. Not sure why the size would be a problem for anyone. Weird.

Aug 21, 2013
FitMom4Life in General Topics

Canned Biscuit Dough for Cake Donuts?

Too funny. Wnen I was little, there was a canned dough for donuts that my mom used ALL the time...she dropped them in the deep fryer and then topped them with the glaze. They were amazing (but not a "cake" type of donut). She said it tasted pretty much exactly like biscuit dough did...just packaged differently.

Jun 12, 2013
FitMom4Life in Home Cooking

Need recipes for make-ahead/heat-em-up dinners for 2 very hungry boys home from college...ideas?

Wow - the strata looks amazing. Adding to my list! Sheesh...never even heard of strata before - thank you!

Jun 04, 2013
FitMom4Life in Home Cooking