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Why won't my sauce stick to my pasta?

Fair enough. A thousand lashes with overcooked noodles for me. Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa for my poor reading comprehension skills, my refusal to try noodles mixed in sauces until this year, and most especially for revisiting this thread. I am thoroughly chastised.

Feb 15, 2014
thursday in Home Cooking

Why won't my sauce stick to my pasta?

FWIW, I stopped reading this thread after about 8 comments because I felt like an idiot that I couldn't get it right, so I never saw your previous comment, KarlS. I've admitted that I didn't understand what people meant when they said finish in the sauce - I think I got overly bogged down in the bronze cut discussion or whatever it was and missed some of the other points.

Oh well. I was simply trying to be helpful to other newbies like myself who may have also been confused. Sorry if everyone felt ignored.

Feb 15, 2014
thursday in Home Cooking

Why won't my sauce stick to my pasta?

Sorry, I didn't ignore all the advice everyone gave me - none of it worked. Soypower and maria lorraine and a few others years ago had suggested finishing in the pan, but I did not quite know what that meant - I thought it meant boil until done, and then put it in the pan, which obviously led to overcooked pasta on my end, but I didn't make the connection because I only tried it the once, and after trying many of the other suggestions here, I gave up. I only updated my results now because someone revived this thread and I thought it would be helpful. I didn't think it was helpful to come back multiple times over the years and say, "None of this is working for me." I only mentioned the Chopped thing because I thought it was funny that I would actually get something useful out a TV show.

Feb 15, 2014
thursday in Home Cooking

Why won't my sauce stick to my pasta?

I'd forgotten I'd started this thread, but I'll update it for anyone interested: an episode of Chopped solved the dilemma! I credit one of the judges (Scott Co...something), who said never cook your pasta until desired doneness in the water, finish it in the sauce. I never do that, or never did. I always cooked it in the water until the texture I liked, then put it in a bowl and poured hot sauce on top, because I liked the way it presented with the pale noodles and blob of sauce. Then we mixed at the table.

We now finish the pasta in the skillet - in just the sauce if it's tomato or something saucy, with a splash of pasta water if we're having something along the lines of a primavera, or oil and garlic without a proper "sauce." Never had a problem since! Delicious, sticky sauced pasta.

Feb 14, 2014
thursday in Home Cooking

Need dinner idea to bring to family with new baby

The paper ones I've seen (even nice ones at Sur La Table, etc.) can barely hold the weight of the item at 2x6 inches...I can't imagine a paper casserole dish, unless you plan on making single serving sizes. If so, then Sur La Table and Crate & Barrel both sell them, as well as numerous websites, but I couldn't imagine doing anything larger than a loaf pan in paper...

Dec 04, 2013
thursday in Home Cooking

Another pre-theater dinner thread...

I should mention - we tried Esca and Marseille as well (so you know the food we like) and thus far we did manage to get a 5 pm at the Modern Bar Room, but it seems SO early to eat... But keeping that in mind, opinions also on whether a 5 pm at MBR is worth a 6 pm elsewhere. =)

Dec 01, 2013
thursday in Manhattan

Another pre-theater dinner thread...

I searched the old threads, but many of the suggestions are closed, booked or too expensive, so new thread seems more efficient. =)

2 people going to an 8 o'clock show at the Cort (48th St) this Saturday night, and we completely forgot to make reservations. We were thinking of db moderne off suggestions here, but they're booked, as are quite a few others. Would like to keep the budget around $40/pp not including drinks. Any ideas?

Dec 01, 2013
thursday in Manhattan

Trader Joe's Yay/Nay Thread - November 2013 [Old]

"am I the only person on the planet who doesn't like this bacon? "

Yes.

;)

Nov 25, 2013
thursday in Chains
2

Trader Joe's Yay/Nay Thread - November 2013 [Old]

I like the canned salmon - the one in the small tin that looks like tuna. It's lovely mixed with avocado for salmon salad on toast or crackers.

Nov 04, 2013
thursday in Chains

Trader Joe's Yay/Nay Thread - November 2013 [Old]

Yay to the Honey Roasted Pumpkin Ravioli - I thought it would be way too sweet, but I mixed some sage and TJ's garlic/parsley/sea salt with some ricotta to use as a sauce, and it was a really delicious dinner.

Yay to the Pumpkin Cranberry Crisps - really nice with brie or with the Syrah-soaked cheese (which may also be a new item - so again, yay! The syrah brings out the sweetness in the very nutty cheese.)

Nov 01, 2013
thursday in Chains

Smoked Salt: What do you use it for?

We went for tapas and ordered a roasted cauliflower dish that was AMAZING. Honestly, we were eating crazy inventive stuff, and the cauliflower was our favorite. It was roasted, with smoked salt. That's it. So that's what we use smoked salt for now. =) Roasted cruciferous vegetables. Not to be too hyperbolic, but it's transformative.

Oct 26, 2013
thursday in General Topics
1

Should home ec classes return to schools?

It's no way to learn a trade, but it is a way to spark interest in something you may not have considered before, and I do think that's what general high schools should be for: to raise interesting and interested adults who are curious to learn more and hopefully contribute something of value to the world, whether it's their thoughts or their skills.

Mark Bittman's Rhetorical Question: Should You Eat Chicken?

Speaking of Costco - I was appalled, frankly, when I went to Costco the day after the chicken story broke. Ralph's had pulled all their Foster Farms chickens, and the news story I read said that the chickens had been pulled from every grocery and Costco in a voluntary recall. I went to Costco to see if I could get some fish or something for dinner instead, and they had a fully stocked chicken case, rotisseries, etc. Surprised, I asked the man restocking the meats, "Oh, I thought the chickens were recalled!" hoping to hear news that the recall was over, and got instead: "No. There was no recall" in a tone that implied I was a paranoid idiot. "I thought there was; Ralph's pulled all their chicken." "No recall. You just have to make sure you cook it really, really well, and it should be fine. Just cook it a lot."

I was flabbergasted - not just that Costco would decide NOT to pull their chicken when every other store had, but that their advice is to just cook it to death?? I did not buy chicken that visit, and I am not a suit-happy person, but if I had bought chicken and gotten sick, I would have sued them in a heartbeat. I think I'm just astounded that we all just sort of accept, "oh well, chicken is diseased" and go about our business as if there is no solution...

Oct 19, 2013
thursday in General Topics

Should home ec classes return to schools?

I actually agree with your point, hal2010, but just have to speak up for the baristas out there: I was a barista for 6 years, my husband going on 20 (though he has moved up to management now that we have kids.) Almost every barista I know has a BA or even Master's degrees, but a job's a job when you have bills to pay, and most of the ones I know took it because it also gave them the ability to have flexibility for working on their thesis, writing a book, or working on their real career on the off hours. Your point's valid, I just don't think we should generalize right away. =)

Should home ec classes return to schools?

I absolutely think Home Ec should be taught in schools, as well as shop and all the other practical skills that have fallen by the wayside - but I also agree that they should be electives.

This begins to go off Chow topics, but there was a trend in education a few decades ago to phase out vocational electives because we were raising young scholars - I don't know whether it was elitism or the women's movement or just funding cuts, but somehow these subjects were seen as "lesser," with the few electives that survived (like art and music) squeaked by because they were "cultural" (and in some districts even they have been cut). It's a massive disservice to both young people and society - I work in education, and the majority of students feel like idiots because they're not good at AP Calc and AP Physics, but they take them anyway so they can try to go to a good college...while in the meantime, they're getting C's in subjects they don't care about and will never use [which is potentially preventing them from getting into a better college] and graduating without the barest skills for the real world. They can create matrices but they can't balance a checkbook. And then they feel worthless if they grow up to be a mechanic or a stay at home mom because those aren't the jobs they were educated for, they're jobs people take as "fallbacks" (never mind that they actually enjoy and are good at fixing cars, or actually desire to do the self-sacrificial and difficult job of raising children). Academics are important, but realistically, the majority of adults don't need advanced math and science - even if they're movers and shakers in society. The education system has NO idea what they are trying to produce, so they keep producing 19th century intellectuals because it seems more impressive.

Sorry - massive rant because it's a passion of mine. =)

Oct 19, 2013
thursday in Food Media & News
1

In the United States, when, if ever, do you haggle over food prices?

My general rule is to haggle where it's expected - so at flea markets, sure, but I can't imagine haggling over food. I've had farmers at the markets suggest I take an extra peach to make it an even dollar, and I'm happy to do so, and I'm happy to dig through seconds bins. I've also been annoyed to pay a certain premium only to see the fruit is bruised or another vendor is selling it cheaper, but that's on me for not doing my due diligence.

As someone who works in an industry in which there is great variance in prices, I get haggled with on a daily basis - and it irks me. I set my prices because they are what the market can bear and what I can afford in order to make a profit and pay my people. When people nickel and dime me down, I'm annoyed. It takes time out of my day when it should be a simple transaction, stresses me out because I need to run a bunch of numbers in my head very quickly to determine my profit ratio vs the effort this is taking, and makes me a little annoyed whenever I interact with that client again because I think of them as a headache client. From their perspective, they got a good deal when there was no advertised special; from mine, I may need to readjust my budgeting for the whole quarter to offset the unexpected discounts. Granted, I work with larger amounts than a $2 kale, but I sympathize with the sellers and l leave their prices alone. If I don't like them, I don't buy them.

What time does the dinner bell ring and a few other ?s

1. Prefer to eat around 7 or 7:30 - but with our schedules, we either eat between 6 and 6:30 when the kids eat, or at 9:30/10 after they're asleep.
2. USA
3. Big city
4. mid-30s

Aug 29, 2013
thursday in Not About Food

Coconut oil and Psoriasis

I used to make organic beauty products, many featuring coconut oil, and it's a silly tip but I'll give it all the same: If the oil isn't absorbing well, just before you leave the house, give yourself a very quick rubdown with a paper towel just to sop up the excess: prevents the stains on the car seats, etc. When you have the time, let it sit on damp skin as long as you can to make sure it gets absorbed as much as possible, but when you have places to go...

Aug 27, 2013
thursday in Not About Food

What's the least you'd order in a sit down restaurant?

I'm not nearly as classy as Hunt, not frequent the same types of places on a regular basis, but honesty is always my go-to as well: If we don't plan on eating, we tell the hostess and let her seat or reject us as she may. "We just want to have a few glasses of wine; do you mind if we take a table?" Most places will be quite accommodating, or at least seat us at the "bad" table (edge of the room/patio where the servers overlook you), and sometimes they'll say they'll too busy and we leave without rancor, but generally it works out well for all concerned. We overtip as a thank you, and the servers can focus on the tables that want their attention.

Aug 27, 2013
thursday in Not About Food

Cash only gratuity allowed ... you may NOT charge the TIP to your CC.

I can't speak to the other aspects, but I can say WHY:

CCs take a 2-3% cut of all transactions, and automatically get added on to whatever accounting the business does. So as a business owner, you have to decide to tip the servers as intended (the ethical route), thereby essentially paying them an extra 2-3% off each table out of your own pocket, or skim off the tips to save yourself this service charge. It also automatically registers as payments to your business, which you then pay out, but I imagine it affects your total income, which affects your taxes come April. Cash keeps everything even steven and under the table.

Aug 25, 2013
thursday in Not About Food
1

Your Biggest Restaurant Menu Pet Peeve

Mine is the opposite side of the coin - when they do something "different" to a standard food and don't tell you. My favorite sandwich place lists on their menu: "Chicken Salad - with onions," only to find that it's also chock full of roasted red peppers and some sort of hot chile. I can't eat spicy foods, so I end up having to throw it out when I forget their "secret recipe" before I order. "Ham and cheese" should mean "ham and cheese," not "ham, cheese and ancho anchovy mustard sauce."

Jul 28, 2013
thursday in Not About Food

Has anyone cooked with nettle?

Nettle tastes a bit like spinach, but more vegetative, almost with a cucumber undertone...

I had a post about it a while ago - but essentially, cooking it kills the toxins, and otherwise, you can use it like any slightly sweet/slightly bitter green.

strangeandyummy.com

Jul 12, 2013
thursday in Home Cooking

Chowhounds and Eating Disorders

An interesting post - and I'm with you, chartreauxx, exploring food and the glories it can be has absolutely helped in my recovery. I was anorexic, bulimic, exercise bulimic, and bulima-rexic throughout my adolescence and 20s - I didn't care about food, I just wanted to be thin; food was the enemy. But in delving so headlong into the vast amounts of research available (in order to conquer said enemy), I was able to find out that small amounts of fats kept you full longer, for example, and because of that, I reintroduced fat into my diet...which led to reintroducing taste...which eventually would lead to the well-researched but very healthy, healthful, and occasionally indulgent way I eat today. Like you said, it definitely helped me to adjust my perception of normal when it comes to food, though it was really yoga that helped me adjust my self-image.

Jul 11, 2013
thursday in Not About Food

What's Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill like for a foodie?

Thanks, all! I I had browsed around the board a bit, and looked on yelp and some other sites, but there was so little mention of the food on the major tourism websites that we got a little nervous...

We're coming from LA, so Asian is obviously huge here, but so are commute times, so 30 mins for a good meal is a Tuesday. =) We're looking forward to our exploratory visit in the fall, and will probably be back here before then for restaurant recs!

Jul 08, 2013
thursday in Southeast

What's Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill like for a foodie?

We're considering a move to the Triangle - we don't eat out a lot, but the lower COL is one of our reasons for moving, which means ideally we'd be able to eat out more... We are definitely foodies in the kitchen, however. We eat local and organic as much as possible, cook almost every meal from scratch, and like to try unusual and new produce. What's the scene like out here? We're not food snobs, we just like diverse and quality meals now and then; we got a little nervous when the official Visit Raleigh website essentially has "American," "Southern,", and "BBQ" as the only categories for dining - no Japanese/Sushi, Thai, or other Asian, not even French or Italian listed...

Jul 07, 2013
thursday in Southeast

What to do with homemade marshamallows?

The taste is fantastic, but we've had these before and this batch is super chewy - more like gummy candy than marshmallows. It was an instant turn-off for both of us, and we love marshmallows. We're going to try to roast one and see if that improves or exacerbates the texture...Thanks!

Jul 05, 2013
thursday in Home Cooking

What to do with homemade marshamallows?

A friend brought us quite a few homemade marshmallows, and we're not fans of the texture - I think she may have used too much gelatin. They're a bit chewy. We were going to toss them, and then I thought that perhaps using them in rice krispies treats, or even roasting for s'mores, might work out - but before I waste the time and further ingredients, will cooking over-gelatinous marshmallows salvage them, or ruin the whole recipe? The flavor is great, it's just the texture that's too much. (almost like a gummy candy - not quite to gummi bear quality, but almost)

Jul 05, 2013
thursday in Home Cooking

Discontinued at Trader Joe's - July 2013 through December 2013

I saw them in Pasadena, CA yesterday-

Jul 01, 2013
thursday in Chains

Costco Food Finds - 2nd Quarter 2013 [OLD]

Burbank, CA had wild caught fresh copper river sockeye for 9.99 a lb today-

Jun 30, 2013
thursday in Chains

Need a quick dessert and out of inspiration!

I have to reply a 2nd time with a great big THANK YOU! This is so easy and so tasty it has instantaneously become my summer go-to - I cooked it in a 10" springform for looks, and it came out perfectly - crispy on top, chewy in the middle and perfect with all this fresh fruit I've been getting from the farmer's market. We're making it again for our July 4th party!

Jun 26, 2013
thursday in Home Cooking