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

expatslat's Profile

Title Last Reply

Recipes for starving college students?

Beans and rice are an easy, healthy combo that can be diversified in many ways... Here are a few highly simplified versions.

--Minute rice / rice in a bag (sorry) + chopped tomatoes, chopped green onions, etc. + rinsed and drained can of black beans + taco seasoning (Add browned ground beef and top with sour cream if payday)
--Minute rice / rice in a bag + curry seasoning + cilantro + chunked rotisserie chicken
--Rice + chunked rotisserie chicken + grated carrots + cilantro + chicken broth
--Minute rice / rice in a bag + spaghetti sauce (1/2 a jar--not the whole thing) + chunked rotisserie chicken + chopped tomatoes + kidney beans + grated parmesan

And so on...

Oct 22, 2007
expatslat in Home Cooking

what is the secret to shnitzel?

1. Pound it thinly before breading. Schnitzel in Vienna are the size of hubcaps.
2. I usually salt and pepper the breading and add other spices. Heresy, perhaps, but it works for me.
3. A double coat of egg wash and breading.
4. A squeeze of lemon at the end. Another lemon wedge on the side.

Oct 22, 2007
expatslat in Home Cooking

What should DH bring me back from Prague?

Kolonada spa wafers (large, round, thin cookies with a thin cream filling) are traditional and tasty. Put 'em in the carry-on to avoid receiving only crumbs. You can find them in any supermarket in square blue, brown, or green boxes.
Becherovka is a fiery anise liqueur. Skip the absinthe.

Pasta salad recipes...

I'm paraphrasing and condensing, here, but this idea from America's Test Kitchen is great--and has lots of veggies. If you mix it in while the pasta is still warm, the feta melts and gives the dish great flavor. Don't forget to save some of the pasta water to use for the pre-dressing step. (I always forget.) ;-)

Chopped green onions would be great in this, too.

Make a basic vinaigrette, with the usual: olive oil, vinegar, salt, pepper; add one chopped shallot, dijon mustard and 1 tbsp. chopped fresh oregano (a pinch, if dried). (Sorry for not very many precise measurements--taste and adjust.)

To a pound of cooked farfalle (save 1 cup of the pasta water), add the pasta water and the vinaigrette (should be about 12 tablespoons) and stir in 1 cup feta cheese, crumbled. Next, add 2 grated carrots, 1 large chopped bell pepper (red and yellow peppers are great in this, too), 1 cup pitted black olives, and 1/2 cup minced parsley leaves. Toss 1 pint cherry tomatoes over the top, but don't stir them in--they'll be squashed.


Sep 02, 2007
expatslat in Home Cooking

Good Recipe for Sick Hubby

If I have enough energy when I'm sick, I usually roast a bunch of chiles, tomatoes, red and green peppers, quartered onions, and garlic cloves, then whiz it all in a blender, once cool. It makes for sinus-clearing salsa.
Alternate with doses of chicken soup, ginger tea, and hot toddies--and get someone else to do the cleanup while you're napping. ;-)

Aug 31, 2007
expatslat in Home Cooking

Denver Breakfast Stops [moved from General Chowhounding Topics]

Highland Gardens Cafe -- 2927 W. 32nd......
Excellent cinnamon rolls and scrambled eggs with smoked salmon. The garden is a great place to be on a Sunday summer morning; have a walk 'round the neighborhood while you're there. St. Patrick's Cheese Shop, around the corner from MondoVino, is a good place to pick up lunch.........

Aug 02, 2007
expatslat in Southwest

Impoverished vegetarian honeymooners seeking Prague recomendations

Right; fried cheese is one of the main dishes on offer, here, to vegetarians. One does tire of it after about two meals, though... The other option, typically, is baked broccoli in cheese sauce...or salads. Creative vegetarianism is still a fairly new concept here, so the veg offers might seem depressingly small in restaurants.

Some reliable places to find good veg include:
Beas Dhaba (off Tynska) -- -- Cheap and good!
Lehka Hlava (down the quay a bit) --
the Bio Cafes (on Na Prikope 31 in the Pasaz Broadway) -- perhaps not exclusively veg, but good soups and fresh things, not to mention smoothies; also relatively cheap.
Au Gourmand ( has some good meatless quiches; a tiny quiche is about 60 crowns... The perfect size for picnicking on Old Town Square.

Some people swear by the Country Life chain, but I find their stuff completely lacking in taste and far too expensive, to boot.

Veg entrees are listed as "bez maso" (without meat) on menus...

If all else fails, stock up on whatever you need at the open-air market on Havelsky Trh or in a supermarket...but it would help to take along a small Czech-English dictionary if you want to be sure of what you're buying.

Cheers and enjoy!
And congratulations! :-)

Favourite tips you picked up while travelling ? [Moved from Home Cooking]

In Israel, I learned to love chopped salad and cheese for breakfast. :-)

Nov 04, 2006
expatslat in General Topics

quick (shorthand) restaurant bill calculations - rules of thumb

Marry a mathematician.
Worked for me.

Oct 22, 2006
expatslat in Not About Food

Pork chops with creamy cabbage

Good sauce, tough chops. ;-)

Braised Pork Chops & Creamy Cabbage

(For 4)
4 1-inch thick, bone-in pork chops
seasoned flour
3 tbsp. olive oil
2 tbsp. butter
1 tsp. caraway seeds
1 tsp. mustard seeds
2 sliced shallots
1/2 small head cabbage
salt and pepper
1/2 c. dry white wine / vermouth
2/3 c. water
1 tbsp. cider vinegar
1 chicken bouillon cube
1/4 c. heavy cream

Dredge chops in seasoned flour. Brown on both sides in a skillet, with olive oil, until golden. Remove.
Toss in butter, caraway, mustard seeds, and cook until the seeds pop; add shallots and saute until all is softened.

Toss in cabbage, salt and pepper; saute over low flame until cabbage goes wilty (approx. 10 minutes).

Add the wine/vermouth for a minute; then add water, vinegar, and bouillon (cube). Boil.

Add chops back to the pan, among the cabbage. Spoon some of the mixture over the chops. Reduce to a simmer, and cover.

Braise, flipping the chops once, for approx. 20 minutes. Remove chops from pan and bring sauce to a boil. Add cream and simmer gently for about 5 minutes. (Cabbage should be moist, but not watery.)

Adjust salt and pepper. Spoon cabbage over chops and serve.

Oct 22, 2006
expatslat in Home Cooking


Green Beans with Orange and Rosemary Gremolata--these are quite good, and are now my Thanksgiving green bean dish. Recipe is from Epicurious, paraphrased.

2 lb. slender green beans, trimmed
3 large garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp. minced fresh Italian parsley
1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 tbsp. grated orange peel
1 tsp. grated lemon peel
6 tbsp. (3/4 stick) butter
1/2 c. low-salt chicken broth
2 tbsp. frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice

Boil beans in salted water for four minutes; drain; shock (or you can skip this step); drain.

In a bowl, stir together garlic, parsley, rosemary, and orange and lemon peel. Transfer one tablespoon of this gremolata to a prep bowl and keep to garnish the final product with.

Melt butter in a large frying pan; add gremolata and stir for half a minute. Add the broth, orange juice conc., lemon juice and bring to a low boil.

Add in the beans. Cook until warmed and until liquid reduces to coat beans. Stir frequently. This should take about five minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Move to serving bowl, and sprinkle with reserved garnish gremolata.


Oct 01, 2006
expatslat in Home Cooking

No-stir polenta

Yes, it works very well, especially for lazy people like me. Interesting that Wolfert originated it!

Sep 24, 2006
expatslat in Home Cooking

No-stir polenta

Here's another no-stir polenta recipe. It's from Sara Moulton, and is baked rather than done on the stovetop. Here's a paraphrased recipe--

4 cups water
1 cup yellow cornmeal or regular (but not instant) coarse polenta
2 tbsp. unsalted butter, thinly sliced
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1/2 tsp. freshly milled black pepper
2 oz. provolone cheese, grated (about 1/2 cup)
2 oz parmesan cheese, finely grated

Oven to 350F. Mix water, cornmeal/polenta, butter, salt, and pepper in a medium-sized baking dish. Do not cover. Bake on the uppermost shelf of the oven for 40 minutes.

Take the dish out of the oven, stir; bake for 10 more minutes.

Take the dish out of the oven, again; stir in provolone and salt and pepper. Let stand five minutes.

Top with parmesan.

(This is good also with mozzarella substituted for provolone. The original recipe recommends topping with cooked tomatoes, mushrooms, or artichokes.)

Yum! No work! :-)

Sep 24, 2006
expatslat in Home Cooking

Bagels in the "old country," circa 2006

In Prague (for example), it's difficult to find a bagel in an average neighborhood bakery. You can get them in Tesco and in an American-run bagel chain (Bohemia Bagel, where they're overpriced and lacking in taste), as well as at Bakeshop Praha (also expat-oriented, but better-tasting).

In Israel, bagels are much skinnier than their American (and Canadian?) counterparts and look like they were destined to be pretzels, at one point. There, they're called "bagelim". Outside sports events, it's not uncommon to see a guy walking around with bagels stacked on rods, on a board, yelling "BAGELIM, BAGELIM, BAGELIM".

How's that for "old country"? :-)

Sep 07, 2006
expatslat in General Topics

Savory Muffin recipes sought

Here's a link to a very good basic savory muffin recipe, with a goat cheese, red onion, and rosemary variation, and a Gruyere, sage and onion one.

They also work as not-so-mini muffins. :-)

Sep 07, 2006
expatslat in Home Cooking

Need help with week-long menu planning please

Regarding dessert... Why not get a few different kinds of cookies and fruits to set out, each night? i.e., peaches and shortbread; plums and gingersnaps; etc. Repeat. ;-)

I'd also toss in some green beans to serve with the filets.

If they're your in-laws, they'll probably want to pitch in and help! :-)

Good luck!

Aug 15, 2006
expatslat in Home Cooking

Best cafes in Vienna for pastry and coffee

Cafe Landtmann has delicious cakes and pastries; they're next to the Burgtheater, at Dr. Karl Lueger-Ring 4.
About a million chocolate shops on Stephansplatz / Kartnerstrasse.
The (gourmet) Julius Meinl market at the end of Graben is a good place to look for foods to bring back; it's also probably more reasonably priced than anything in a one-kilometer radius.
It's the end of apricot season in Austria, so little apricot jams or such would be worth bringing back for gifts.

Food for a New Mom (When it's ridiculously hot outside)

Salads are brilliant, but anything a nursing mom can hold in one hand and nibble on is also helpful. Lasagna tends to slide around a lot and requires two hands.

Think tea sandwiches. Seriously. Whole-grain bread, slathered with not-too-garlicky or -oniony spread, plus cucumbers; sandwiches with grilled turkey or chicken with something to hold it to the bread (mmm, melted cheese). Even a glorified tuna-salad sandwich would be good.

Or a veg and cheese plate. Think finger foods or appetizerish things.

Jul 21, 2006
expatslat in Home Cooking