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Vintage Sunbeam Waffle Maker and grill

I picked up this vintage Sunbeam waffle maker and grill (model WB-K) at a rummage sale for a few bucks. It's still in great condition, plates are clean and the exterior is fairly shiny. I cleaned it up a bit, but am overall quite happy with the find. The grills are reversible and can be used for waffles or paninis/meats/sandwiches.

When I picked it up, I thought the grills were well seasoned cast iron. It turns out that it's actually teflon coated cast aluminum. I'm not too keen on the teflon coating, but am hoping that I'll find some cast iron grills at some other rummage sale in the near future that I can swap out.

I'm wondering if any of you might have experience using this wafflemaker? Are there any tips that you would recommend?

Oct 25, 2013
daeira in Cookware

Seeking Long-lost LCBO Food & Drink recipe from Autumn 1999

You're very welcome ksilk. As I said, if you have any more requests, don't hesitate to ask. I've got a very large digital archive of the LCBO recipes at the ready.

Enjoy your veal and apple stew!

Oct 20, 2013
daeira in Ontario (inc. Toronto)

Seeking Long-lost LCBO Food & Drink recipe from Autumn 1999


I think I have your recipe. There isn't a mention of strongbow cider, but there is cider mentioned. It was in the autumn 1999 edition.

In my OCD, I digitally archived many of the older recipes, going back to 1999 before I culled my physical magazine stack. If there's anything else you want, just ask.

Here's the recipe for Veal Saute with Apples

2 tbsp (25 mL) olive oil
1 lb (500 g) stewing veal, cut in 1-inch (2.5-cm) dice
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
½ cup (125 mL) chopped carrots
½ cup (125 mL) chopped celery
1 cup (250 mL) chopped onions
2 cloves garlic, chopped
½ tsp (2 mL) cinnamon
½ tsp (2 mL) ground ginger
Pinch cayenne
½ cup (125 mL) alcoholic cider
1 cup (250 mL) chicken or veal stock
1 large apple, peeled and finely chopped
1 cup (250 mL) whipping cream
2 tbsp (25 mL) chopped parsley

Heat 1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil in large skillet on medium-high heat. Add veal in batches, season with salt and pepper and brown on all sides, about 2-3 minutes per batch. Remove veal. Add more oil if needed. Reduce heat to medium-low if needed and add carrots, celery and onions. Sauté, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Add garlic and sauté until vegetables are very soft, about 2 minutes longer.

Stir in cinnamon, ginger and cayenne. Add cider and stock and bring to boil. Return meat to skillet, cover and simmer on low heat for 40 minutes or until veal is tender. Remove meat and strain sauce back into skillet. Add apples and cream and simmer until sauce has thickened slightly and apples are tender, about 5 minutes.

Return veal and adjust seasonings. Sprinkle with parsley.

Serves 4

Oct 19, 2013
daeira in Ontario (inc. Toronto)

Opinion Request: Breville Mini Smart Oven

I'm a bit late to the discussion but absolutely recommend the Breville mini smart oven. I have this exact one and it's been a lifesaver in summer when my apartment has been too hot to turn on my larger oven.

I've made roasted chicken, baked muffins and quick breads, smaller pies, baked custards, re-crisped deep fried foods, toasted bread, heated up baked goods, and other things.

I love the small size as it's perfect for cooking/heating/baking for one or two people. I haven't baked pizza in it, except to reheat as I have a stone that fits into my larger oven. I like that it's small and it doesn't clutter my countertop too much.

One of my small complaints is that the beep that alerts you that it's preheated and time is done, is a bit loud. You can hear it from clear across the room.

Sep 06, 2013
daeira in Cookware

CNE 2013 - food recs (not the cronut burger, obviously)

I was there a few days ago and there wasn't anything I had that I'd pay to have again. The food trucks weren't there, so we settled on a veal sandwich and a really terrible crepe for dessert. The crepe in particular was such an abomination, that I wanted to hurl it at the garbage can for fun.

Thinking that it would be like the banana-nutella crepes in Paris, instead, I received a small crepe, barely cooked, with a whole raw banana sliced lengthwise and a thin spread of nutella. Worst thing ever.

Aug 30, 2013
daeira in Ontario (inc. Toronto)

Non-stick muffin tins not non-stick

Thanks Sirrith. I'll also give butter a try as well.

Aug 07, 2013
daeira in Cookware

Non-stick muffin tins not non-stick

Thanks for the responses everybody. I'm going to try the spray or oil approach. I've never thought of oiling my bakeware before since my previous non-stick muffin tins never had problems releasing. Should this not work, I might just head for the silicon option.

Aug 05, 2013
daeira in Cookware

Non-stick muffin tins not non-stick

Perhaps this is my incompetence more than anything, but I'm finding that my non-stick muffin pan isn't at all non-stick. In fact, I'm having such a hard time removing muffins. I'm wondering if anybody also experiences this and what remedies there may be.

For some background:
-The non-stick surface isn't scratched at all.
-I always use a plastic knife to run along the muffin cup to loosen the muffin.
-It's a mini-muffin tin so the cups are much smaller
-The muffins are fully cooked when they're removed from the oven, and are browned.
-I don't grease or spray the cup of the muffin tin prior to baking.
-I typically bake low-fat muffins

I was wondering if there might be better bakeware to use and am open to any suggestions. I'm getting so tired of struggling to get my mini-muffins out.

Thanks in advance.

Aug 05, 2013
daeira in Cookware

How to buy 50 teacups on the cheap?

If you don't mind a bit of hunting, thrift stores can be a great place to find mismatching teacups and saucers. You should go on the days when it's 50% off housewares to get more bang for your buck.

If your bridal shower is in the summer or during a warmer month, you could DIY a tea "cup" out of mason jars, which are in abundance at thrift stores. Simply drill a hole in the top of the lid, attach a washer from the hardware store, stick a straw in, and serve cold tea with ice cubes. It's a bit more rustic, but you could DIY the mason jar up with a pretty ribbon.

If that's not an option, you can definitely rent things

Aug 03, 2013
daeira in Cookware

How to clean Corning Ware?

Foiegras - I do think Shadow Iris is the name of a pattern. I saw some of the Shadow Iris in the new Corning Ware stores the other day, and see it all the time in the thrift stores.

Actually, the other day, I saw a few patterns that I didn't recognize at all and had never seen. Apparently, they were quite popular in Asia. These are still the pyroceram kinds but in patterns like Pretty Pink, Pink Daisy, Sakura, and Warm Pansies etc. It's pretty neat seeing all the different patterns.

Aug 03, 2013
daeira in Cookware

How to clean Corning Ware?

I saw some Shadow Iris the other day when I stopped by a Corning Ware/Revelle store. They were the pyroceram pieces, but the prices they were asking were astronomical. I see quite a bit of discarded Shadow Iris and plain white (not the French white) in the thrift stores. Nobody seems to want those patterns.

Nowadays, I don't tell my aunt that what she's eating was cooked in Corning Ware. I just let her think I'm using my mom's Corning Ware. I'm not sure where the discomfort stems from since eating in a restaurant guarantees that the patron is eating off dishes that have been used by hundreds if not thousands of other patrons before. How is that better than cooking in a thoroughly cleaned Corning Ware that probably has been in one household, maybe two, before I too rescued it?

On your blog, you should do a before and after of a terribly dirty, stained, beyond rescue Corning to demonstrate what it can become. I know you've done the percolator, and the French white demo, but I'm sure people might enjoy seeing what could be. The piece that I picked up at the rummage sale that had "Pyroceram" on the bottom took me over 2 hours to clean. It was a tedious process, particularly under the handles. That was just good old fashioned elbow grease, rubbing away at 40+ year old stains. My thumbs still hurt and that was 4 weeks ago.

I suppose one of my remaining questions is, is it safe to use a pyrex Corning Ware lid in the oven when it has a noticeable chip on it? I've picked up a few thrifted pieces where the lid hasn't been in the best condition. So far, I've replaced using the glass lid with just aluminum in the oven, and used the lid in the fridge for storage. After reading about exploding pyrex, and how mini-fractures can start, I'm scared that the chip will cause the entire thing to shatter. It's a shame that not more lids were made in the pyroceram material.

Aug 03, 2013
daeira in Cookware

How to clean Corning Ware?

I've never ever washed my corning by dishwasher if only because I'm my own dishwasher. I've read somewhere that you should always wash it by hand because something in the dishwashing cycle ruins the polish or finish of the Corning.

Those stains in my original post must have been years old, baked on over and over again every time it was used in the oven. Now I'm extra careful when I wash my own corning after using them in the oven. I don't want to have to spend all that time again cleaning it.

I like the out of sight out of mind suggestion (for future pieces). Unfortunately, I'm of the personality type that continually gets bothered because I know it's there. I know, terrible.

Aug 02, 2013
daeira in Cookware

How to clean Corning Ware?

I too love those sandwich/snack plates, but I often don't see them in the thrift stores. I've started using them for everything. Grab-its seem to be more scarce in my neck of the woods. But I've found they're really handy for just about everything.

You're right about the A-series on the Spice o' Life casseroles. They do have the larger handles, and I think the more square-ish shape. I even still have the original blue Corning Ware box that they came in.

Unfortunately, space is such a premium in my apartment. I've already struggled with creating a pantry out of a rolling rack to free up a bit of space. Some of my Corning Ware has made it onto the free standing unit already. I'm not quite ready to open a museum like you, but my shelves and cupboards are bursting. At some point, I'm going to have to cull some of them and select my favourite pieces before storing or selling the remainder. I've slowed down considerably in my purchasing if only because I know that I'll inherit some other pieces when my father passes away. Luckily, my sibling has absolutely no interest in cooking or even Corning Ware. The funny thing is that my father encouraged me to take the Corning Ware and when I took a few pieces, he started buying replacements from the thrift shop. So I just took them back to his house.

I've had an aunt who was fairly disgusted that the food I cooked on was cooked on thrifted Corning Ware. I told her that given the amount of cleaning, scouring, and yet more cleaning, that the Corning Ware was probably cleaner than anything she ate off in her own home.

Aug 02, 2013
daeira in Cookware

How to clean Corning Ware?

I just glanced at the bottom of my Corning Ware. My Spice 'o Life patterns have the measurements in cups, whereas some of my Cornflower casseroles are in oz. All of the ones I've looked at were manufactured in Canada. Some are stamped in black, others have a very faint marking that's barely visible.

My Dutch Oven (P-34-B) has no measurement on it at all, except for the "Made in Canada" designation. My 4 cup measuring cup is in cups and oz.

I'm a newbie to Corning Ware collecting. I had a few Spice o' Life pieces that my mother had passed to me when I first moved into my own place. I used those through and through for custards and baking chicken, and one day decided to expand my collection. I've been avidly looking since the beginning of this year and am surprised at how quickly my collection has grown to include harder to find pieces.

Strangely, I now always seem to encounter the F-14-Bs in thrift shops, usually with lid. Since some of the thrift stores I frequent are chains, I wonder if they simply send off their inventory to other stores to sell off.

My one big regret is that my sister sold off a few boxes of brand new never opened Snack Sandwich Plates from the grab-it collection (P-185-B) in a garage sale for $2 a box! I hadn't realized she had done it as they were part of what mom had purchased.

One of my biggest problems now is storage space. Since I reside in a tiny apartment, I have very little storage space and am finding that my ever-growing collection of Corning Ware is being stacked and restacked in strange ways. Any tips on how best to maximize storage capacity? My French White ovals and round casseroles are nested in each other. But my square casseroles have inverted lids and are simply stacked one on top of another. It's not the most efficient use of space.

Aug 01, 2013
daeira in Cookware

How to clean Corning Ware?

Thanks for the tips CulinaryAlchemy.

I reside in Canada and wonder if the Corning Ware classification system is the same as the US. I ask because I recently purchased a casserole to fit the pyroceram lid. The casserole came with its own pyrex lid. On the bottom, it's marked as "10 inch", but also marked "P 10". For the most part, the lid fits, though there is a very small gap near the corner (see picture).

I might be on the prowl again for another bottom if this isn't the right one.

I'm still looking for a brownie 9x9 (or 8x8?) pan and a loaf pan. I've yet to ever see one in person. I recently stumbled across a baking sheet, a few pie plates, and a F(orP)270-B large double handled grab-it with lid. Where I live, there is an abundance of French White oval casseroles, so I managed to complete my set, including the large double handled turkey roaster (F14B).

Aug 01, 2013
daeira in Cookware

How to clean Corning Ware?

Hi Culinary Alchemy (of the Corningware411 blog fame?),

Since my initial post, I've refined my corning ware cleaning method to involve the ceramic top cleaner, the o-celo sponges, baking soda, dishwashing liquid, and my new best friend, a bamboo skewer for those tough to clean baked on food crevice/ridge lines. I've found the wet bamboo skewer to be the most effective, more than the scraper (even on the little dots).

I've never tried barkeeper's friend, but think I might give it a whirl. Does the Barkeeper's Friend turn the baked on black grease gooey and soften it?

I recently rescued an old corning ware (with the words "PYROCERAM" on the bottom) with handle at a local rummage sale for $3! It took an impressive amount of time to clean, including simmering it shortly in a very dilute bleach solution to restore it back to its pristine white condition.

My latest find was a pyroceram lid for a P-10-B(?) corning ware casserole. I was so excited.

Jul 31, 2013
daeira in Cookware

Minuet Cafe - 925 Danforth Avenue

We just stopped by Minuet Cafe before dinner as well. The owner seems like a really down-to-earth and nice guy. He told me that he's a master baker, trained in Germany. He grew up there.

As it was also close to closing time, he insisted on gifting us some bread to take back as well. The bread was great. It reminds me of the bread from Japan, slightly dense, buttery, and sweet. My partner tore into it when we got home after inhaling the aroma.

The cakes are light and not excessively sweet.

I'd absolutely go back to try other things he bakes.

Master Chef 6/19

I also dislike the portrayal of Krissi. What an ugly personality.

I'm becoming increasingly frustrated that cooking shows have become entirely too competitive and adversarial. I miss the days when cooking shows actually taught you how to cook.

Compared to a few seasons ago, this is quickly becoming MC Hell's Kitchen style. I'm just waiting for Joe to start calling them donkeys

Jun 20, 2013
daeira in Food Media & News

My wife's parents are here from Mexico, and they want to go to Mandarin... again.... How can I convince them otherwise?

My partner's parents love Mandarin as well. I can't understand it, but all they eat there is the roast beef.

Jun 11, 2013
daeira in Ontario (inc. Toronto)

Best Toaster Oven under $50

I don't have any particular brand that I can suggest for under $50, but have you considered visiting some thrift shops for toaster ovens? You can often find top of the line toaster ovens at a fraction of the price. This might give you more bang for your buck. I always see toaster ovens at thrift stores from Black and Decker, Cuisinart, Breville etc. You'd just have to test it and put in a little elbow grease to clean it up.

The other day, I saw a Breville Mini (the same kind I have that I love) priced at $15 at a thrift store. They retail for over $150. I'm not sure why it was donated as it still looked pretty shiny and new. I was seriously contemplating purchasing it for a relative, but elected not to as she'd just think it was more "clutter".

Jun 07, 2013
daeira in Cookware

Why am I saving these boxes?

I'm a box keeper, or rather was a box keeper. I used to keep all the boxes for appliances and gadgets just in case I needed to return them, or just in case I needed to move. But then I realized it was a waste of space and recycled the whole lot of them, including internal packaging. The only thing I kept was the UPC code that I stapled to the bill and manual.

The only boxes that I keep are for really large appliances that are difficult to move or ship (ex boxes for tvs, or computer monitors).

I have found that when I sell my appliances and gadgets in the boxes at garage sales, people always express amazement that I've kept them. I still remember selling a pristine milk shake maker from the late 1980s in its original packaging and box. The person who bought it was really happy

May 30, 2013
daeira in Cookware

Top Chef Canada, Season 3, Episode 11

I was a bit disappointed to see Nicole go home. She always demonstrated a sense of class when being judged in previous challenges.

While I think the judging itself is terrible and inconsistent, you have to hand it to Nicole and Danny for taking the comments as well as they did.

The comment by Lisa seemed so inappropriate especially since the concept of "high class" food is such a social construction. Look at how lobster has become elevated since the past. Lisa's comment seemed so ironic given the actual (sarcasm on) "high class" (sarcasm off) of the housewives of Vancouver.

May 28, 2013
daeira in Food Media & News

Electric indoor grill and aluminum foil?

I think the consensus is that I should just get a new one. I envy my neighbours to the south. I'm in Canada so a lot of these appliances aren't as cheap as in the US.

I just wish manufacturers would make something without non-stick grills that's for home use.

One of my other options might be just to buy a cast iron grill pan and use a heavy press. It won't cook as fast as the electric grill, but it might be just as effective

May 18, 2013
daeira in Cookware

Electric indoor grill and aluminum foil?

Looks like aluminum foil is doable. I'm just not sure how effective my machine would be anymore because the grooves of the grill are very deep compared to the more shallow grooves on the Foreman grill.

May 18, 2013
daeira in Cookware

Electric indoor grill and aluminum foil?

Wow, that's a heavy duty press. I like that it has cast iron grates, but definitely don't have the space in my tiny galley kitchen for something.

I'm just so surprised that companies haven't considered that potential customers may want cast iron presses instead of the non-stick variety.

May 18, 2013
daeira in Cookware

Electric indoor grill and aluminum foil?

Thanks all.

I really like my indoor grill. Perhaps I should just buy a new one. I just assumed it would be okay to place foil on the grills since I see panini presses covered with foil in cafes.

Even if there aren't any health risks to eating non-stick coatings, something about knowing that I'm ingesting flakes of non-stick coating freak me out a bit (I know very unscientific).

Mine is a Hamilton Beach and is quite compact. I've noticed though that the non-stick coating is very different than my dad's George Foreman grill. Mine is dark black, whereas the Foreman grill is grey. Perhaps the non-stick coating on mine is inferior.

May 17, 2013
daeira in Cookware

Electric indoor grill and aluminum foil?

I have a George Foreman type grill that has removable plates. After some heavy use, the non-stick surface has started to peel and flake away, so much so that I've not used the appliance out of fear.

I haven't been able to locate replacement grills and I feel bad just simply throwing out the appliance to buy a new one, when it's still perfectly good to use (except for the removable grills).

Is it feasible/safe to use the grills if I cover them with aluminum foil? I'm not sure of any other solution, but am open to anything you might suggest.

Ideally, I would like to find an indoor electric Forman style grill that has cast iron removable plates, but haven't found anything.

Any suggestions would be most welcome.

May 16, 2013
daeira in Cookware

Breville toaster oven what size?

I have the Breville mini-smart oven and like its small size. I'm in a small space and have found it more than adequate to handle all of my baking/broiling/cooking needs. I find that it produces substantially less heat than my oven. It does a great job of crisping deep fried foods. I use it almost every day.

I've made custards, baked bread, done roasts, casseroles, stews, and heated up food. Due to its smaller size, it can only fit a 10x10 baking pan, and an 11 inch pizza.

What size you get really depends on your needs and your available space.

Apr 24, 2013
daeira in Cookware

Pantry Organization Help - Outgrown Pantry

The Mavalus tape or command strips is a good option for a stick on blackboard. I wonder if the tape would also hold up for a stainless steel backsplash without damaging the walls. I'm a bit worried that the double stick tape won't be so easily removed.

The wheel suggestion was a fantastic one. I can roll it out of the way when I need to clean.

Apr 16, 2013
daeira in Cookware

How do you clean a filthy microwave oven

I second (or is it sixth) the boiling water with lemon method, allowing the water to sit and steam the inside for some time. For really tough stains, you can sprinkle baking soda and spritz with vinegar to create a bubbling froth. Scrub with a brillo or similar pad.

For those pesky smells, what I've found that works is spritzing newspaper with vinegar and placing in the microwave overnight or longer if need be. The vinegar newsprint removes the smell quite effectively.

Apr 16, 2013
daeira in Cookware