ArizonaDave's Profile

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Butchers dont Butcher?

I've had two opposite experiences recently with butchers...
I was making some beef jerky and while I usually do my own slicing, this time I asked the "butcher" behind the counter if he'd slice it for me. He rolled his eyes and sighed even before I could get out "you can partially freeze it and I can come back if you'd like" (for easier slicing). Instead I just told him I'd take it and do it myself. God forbid I ask a butcher to actually cut meat. I wanted to roll those eyes right out of his head...
Then
I made my 1st trip to a local shop here in Phx (The Meat Shop, S of downtown Phx - highly recommend it!) and asked "How thick are the pork loin chops?"
His response?
"How thick would you like them?"
Perfect.

Then the owner came out and I chatted with him a bit - I have family in the meat biz in the midwest, so I always like to "talk meat"

"Where do you source your pork?
"From my farm, all the pork I sell, I raise"

Perfect.

AzD

Aug 25, 2011
ArizonaDave in General Topics

Giant Zucchini

Sounds great - I *try* to stay away from starches, so using this as a pasta replacement sounds fantastic.
Will be trying this one - Thanks!

AzD

Aug 13, 2010
ArizonaDave in Home Cooking

Giant Zucchini

I've done the same thing, sometimes those guys hide out and get ridiculously huge. See attached photos...
I've cut and grilled them up, but not as good as when they're the proper size... could be better used for bread maybe?

Aug 10, 2010
ArizonaDave in Home Cooking

Good Burger in Goodyear

Tried this today - Very good!
Had the 6oz, very nice beefy flavor, juicy, a little pink inside (I didn't specify doneness, just let him cook it for the 1st try). Loved to see roasted green chilis at the condiment bar.. loaded up on those. Really like the fresh baked bun, the great produce (tomato was great!)... Fries were great too - had the regular... coulda asked for them a touch more crispy, but still very good.

Very casual - order at counter and it's brought out to you. 6oz Burger w/cheese, fries and 20oz soft drink (bottle) about 8 bucks.
Will def be back.
(Only open to 7pm)

AzD

Jul 16, 2010
ArizonaDave in Phoenix

Good Burger in Goodyear

Wow - thanks. I'm just up the road in Litchfield Park.. Can't wait to try it.
We're seriously lacking good burgers in this area.

AzD

Jul 07, 2010
ArizonaDave in Phoenix

Spicy Etiquette

Very helpful post - thank you!

AzD

Jul 07, 2010
ArizonaDave in General Topics

Spicy Etiquette

15yrs ago or so, a friend of mine and I would go to this little Vietnamese restaurant across the street from our office at least 3 times a week. All family run with the "old man" the obvious boss.
In addition to their ethic dishes, which we loved, they also served things like sandwiches and burgers.... also great. It was so varied we could eat there often and still never get tired of it... anyway...

We got the 2nd menu for the first time one day. It was just a typed 8 1/2 x 11 sheet in clear plastic. As I scanned it, there was one dish who's name seemed to go across the entire page. I asked "How do I pronounce this?" pointing it... with a glint in the old man's eye he looked at me and said
"Number Eleven".

Still have no idea what it was, but I know everything I got off that 2nd menu was fantastic.

AzD

Jul 01, 2010
ArizonaDave in General Topics

What's for Dinner XXVI

Last night had Grilled Citrus Sambal Oelek Shrimp with a nice green salad with homemade Balsamic Lime Dressing.

The shrimp was inspired by the recipe in the 04/2010 Food & Wine.
I made a number of changes including adding way more SO than called for (I like it hot), left out the orange juice and used it as both a marinade and dressing for the shrimp instead of just a dressing.
Came out really darn good.

For info on what I did, I posted it to my FB: http://tinyurl.com/ycgk3r8
(you do NOT need to be signed up for Facebook to see, I have to open to all

)

If you like spicy shrimp - I recommend trying it.

AzD

Apr 08, 2010
ArizonaDave in Home Cooking

Your favorite Carbonara recipe

This would seem to follow what mbfant wrote above - I don't think you need to speak Italian to follow along:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iERZIR...

Apr 05, 2010
ArizonaDave in Home Cooking

Hovering Kitchen Guest Conundrum

When I have people over - it's actually for them to watch me cook. I have an island kitchen and happen to be the "best" cook of my friends. They all come over and sit around the island watching me prepare the apps, main and desert asking questions all the way along - it's very Molto Mario and we all have a blast. My mixed company friends call it "Cooking With Dave", but occasionally I have four or five female friends over.... they call it "Ladies Night At Dave's"

I DO get all the prep done ahead so the counter is filled with ramekins of ingredients all ready to go - the cooking shows sure have it right on that count. We go through wine, chat, and even laugh together when I make a mistake. Fun times!

AzDave

Dec 30, 2009
ArizonaDave in Features

Ramsay Cookalong (LIve?)

Looks like it could be good - the commercial I saw showed the more reserved "teacher/mentor" Ramsay can be, like F Word or KM UK.

I'll watch (or at least DVR it)

AzD

Dec 14, 2009
ArizonaDave in Food Media & News

Top Chef Las Vegas Ep. 6 - 09/23/09 (Spoilers)

I agree completely. She used her life experience as inspiration for the dish she created. Should she not have mentioned it? She did the right thing - the dish was personal and a reflection of her struggles.

Eli's comment was also insulting to Michelle and Padma by implying they would be swayed by a sob story and not judge the food on the plate as has been maintained from the inception of the show is THE criteria. It obviously tasted great.

The sourness of his grapes made me pucker at home.
Enjoying this season very much overall.

AzD

Sep 24, 2009
ArizonaDave in Food Media & News

You haven't had a ! until you've had a !!

...a strawberry until you've had a wild strawberry.

Back in the mid 80's, I was camping somewhere in New Mexico.
I went off for a short hike by myself and crested a hill and went down into a small pasture/valley. I didn't notice them at first, but once I realized what ALL of the small plants were that covered literally the whole valley, I thought I was in a Beatles song. I plopped my butt down and started eating. They were small, about the size of your thumbnail and I have never tasted anything like it before or since.
I didn't even know they grew in NM.
I sure wish I knew where that valley was...

AzD

Aug 28, 2009
ArizonaDave in General Topics

Top Chef Vegas Ep. #2 - 08/26/09 (spoilers)

Honestly I missed that. The assistant was a chef from Michael Mina if I remember the title overlay correctly.

Hmmm. The video seems to have been taken down... they must have noticed the onion! Oh well, it was a funny clip I thought. Now they have Brain Malarkey doing a healthy version of the dish - Scrambled Egg Whites with Corn Avocado Salsa.

Aug 28, 2009
ArizonaDave in Food Media & News

Top Chef Vegas Ep. #2 - 08/26/09 (spoilers)

Fabio has a video on the Bravo TC site making the Chips and Guacamole Macaroon.
Looks fun and easy and of course Fabio is hilarious...
"That's justa wrong-uh by any means"

http://www.bravotv.com/top-chef/video...

AzD

Aug 27, 2009
ArizonaDave in Food Media & News

Deli ham

I tend toward Virginia, but was recently pleasantly surprised when I tried Kretschmar "Off the Bone" ham when it was recently on sale at the deli counter. Not too familiar with them, but this was darn good. Looked like "real" ham and didn't taste processed.

AzD

Aug 27, 2009
ArizonaDave in General Topics

Tipping when taking out food

I stopped in a local bar and grill I frequent yesterday on my way home to pick up some wings to go. Now this place does have a counter out front and if I were to call it in and pick up from the counter, I wouldn't tip. BUT, that's not what I do.

I grab a seat in the bar area, order a beer and the food (to go) from my server. Since the first cold beer goes down so quick here at the end of the day when it's 110f outside, I usually have time for a second.

The server brings the food to me from the kitchen and I tip normally on the bev and maybe a little extra on the food. I see the food tip as a bonus since I could have very well sat and had beer only in the same timeframe (as many do).

I get my wings, cool down, quench my thirst, server gets an extra couple bucks... we're all happy.

AzD

Aug 27, 2009
ArizonaDave in Not About Food

Does a burger need a topping?

I have to admit - I still like ketchup on my burgers.
Now with Hatch Chiles in season, just a roasted chile, cheddar, a bit of ketchup, touch of mustard underneath. Burger cooked Med in cast iron. Buttered bun toasted in the cast iron.
Works for me every time!

Aug 27, 2009
ArizonaDave in General Topics

Phx - Hatch Chiles

Wow - great deal.
Thanks for the heads up!

I paid .99/lb at one of the chain groceries.
Oh well, those are all roasted and eaten.
Time to re-fill!

AzD

Aug 26, 2009
ArizonaDave in Phoenix

When to salt (season) beef prior to braising?

If you're going to brown/sear the ribs prior to braising, I'd definitely salt ahead.
I'm with A. Brown in believing that the salt will pull proteins to the surface (and not dry out the beef as some say. It would take much more salt and much longer to actually dry it) which will enhance browning.

my .02

AzD

Aug 25, 2009
ArizonaDave in Home Cooking

Frozen pizza instructions - a hoot!

I love those obvious instructions on items - you just know there's a history there.

In fact comedian Bill Engval had a routine on a number of them. The one I remember was something like
"Did you ever notice that Preparation H says 'Do Not Take Orally' on the tube? You just know someone sent them a letter.
'Dear Preparation H, I ate this whole dang tube, but I still got hemorrhoids.... but my mouth is so small, I can hardly eat a jelly bean!'"

Really funny stuff.

AzD

Aug 24, 2009
ArizonaDave in General Topics

Looks like an impressive group of Cheftestants for TC-Las Vegas

I've followed that blog the last few seasons - definitely worth bookmarking.
This year looks great!

Aug 19, 2009
ArizonaDave in Food Media & News

Char and pizza?

I do like char - it might be something you adapt to.
There is a fine line between char and burnt and I feel it has more to do with how "deep" the char goes rather than how much of it is spread out around the bottom of the pie.

As with all food, eat what you like and don't let anyone tell ya otherwise :-)
(although that Texas pizza looks rough to me)

Here's a pic of a grilled pizza of mine - I think this is just about right for my taste.

AzD

Aug 14, 2009
ArizonaDave in General Topics

Burgers, hot dogs for us -- what to grill for vegetarians?

Good luck!

bagelman's suggestions below sound fantastic too - both for the meat eater and non.
You may ask your guests how they feel about Bocas and Morning Star items as they may love them. I've never tried them because, well, I eat meat. I've heard both good and bad from those who have. Also, there are some out there who may not appreciate portabellos, or as I call them, "the meat of the fungi world".... but they do fit on a bun nicely!

Hubert Keller makes a veg burger at Burger Bar that I've heard is so good it can satisfy carnivores. I saw him make it on Secrets of a Chef, but may not fit the "simple" part of your plan.

AzD

Aug 06, 2009
ArizonaDave in Home Cooking

Burgers, hot dogs for us -- what to grill for vegetarians?

How about portabellos? Brush with olive oil, a few herbs....
I'm not a vegetarian, but love these guys. Can even be served on a bun.

AzD

Aug 06, 2009
ArizonaDave in Home Cooking

Mail order olive oil? What's the best?

The Queen Creek Olive Mill is quite good here in Arizona. I know it's domestic, but Chris Bianco uses it :-)
Very nice, unique and not too pricey.

http://www.queencreekolivemill.com/sh...

Good luck,

AzD

Edit: I just noticed the date of the OP - sorry!

Aug 06, 2009
ArizonaDave in General Topics

World's Best Mustard? Please stake your claim.

I second Mr. Mustard! Love it.
I was raised on it and love its sinus heat. Was hard to find for a while here in Az and used to bring it home from trips to OH. Then some markets started carrying it locally a few years ago so I always have some on hand. Definitely my go to mustard.

AzD

Aug 02, 2009
ArizonaDave in General Topics

Best Traditional Buffalo Wings in Phoenix?

On the Westside - Nino's at 59th and Peoria (NE plaza behind the Arby's) does a great job. Been going there for about 20 years. Good NY pizzeria style pies and Beef on Weck too (they're a Buffalo family). Also Anzio's on 28th Dr. about 1/4 mi N of Cactus has always had very good wings though I haven't been there in a year or two. Anzio's pizza seems to be love or hate - it's a bit unique, but wings were always consistently good. I order xtra crispy at both places.

I don't think they've always done it (I could be wrong), but Native has been flouring their wings lately. When there I ask for them naked for traditional style.

Good luck,

AzD

Jul 31, 2009
ArizonaDave in Phoenix

Cannot log in with Safari

I'm in!

Good job.

AzD

Jul 31, 2009
ArizonaDave in Site Talk

Cannot log in with Safari

Me too - still no luck logging in with Safari.
Just tried 1 min ago.

Jul 30, 2009
ArizonaDave in Site Talk