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How do I start making my own bitters?

There's a whole project documenting this: http://www.chow.com/food-news/54547/b...

Feb 23, 2014
webgeekstress in Spirits

Prague, Krakow, and Berlin over XMas and New Year's

I lived in Prague for a couple of years. I recommend Rybí Trh (http://www.rybitrh.cz/index_en.html) near Old Town Square for Christmas Eve. They offer a traditional Czech Christmas Eve dinner, including fish soup and fried carp with potato salad. (They also have their regular menu, if carp doesn't appeal to you.) Since it's so convenient to Old Town Square, you can also take in the free open-air performance of Ryba's Czech Christmas Mass at 9:00 PM.
Despite the large Vietnamese population, there really aren't any Vietnamese restaurants of note in Prague. Nor did I ever find any reasonable Chinese restaurants. (Or at least,not as of three years ago. Maybe some have cropped up since I left.)
OTOH, there *are* some very nice Thai restaurants. I always liked Noi, http://www.noirestaurant.cz/en/noi. More recently, I've heard good things about Kiin Modern Thai Restaurant, http://www.kiin.cz/

Nov 20, 2013
webgeekstress in Europe

Do you have a vegan or plant-based menu that you serve to omnivore guests? Just brainstorming...

I also like tempeh in a cacciatore.

Jul 26, 2013
webgeekstress in Vegetarian & Vegan
1

How old is a five-year-old bottle of Worcestershire in dog years?

Well, none of these is likely to kill you, no matter how old they get. The cornbread and baking powder have likely lost their leavening oomph, though, and should probably just be tossed.

As to strategies to prevent this, I have much the same problem (being 5'1"), and I haven't found a solution either.

Jun 29, 2013
webgeekstress in General Topics

Pasta Salad for Barbecue

My Mom's go-to recipe for macaroni salad: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/barbeque...
The kind of pasta doesn't really matter: I've made this with rigatoni, penne, elbow macaroni, and shells. (Just don't use spinach pasta: the color of the salad is really gross.)

Jun 15, 2013
webgeekstress in Home Cooking

'Tis the season...for cheap "champagne".

I can't *stand* Cooks - far too sweet for my taste; I've never tried the Mondavi, so I can't comment. My mom's go-to was always Freixenet (or, as she called it, "Fishnet"), and I still like it for mixing. (Straight up, I refuse to go cheap: cheap sparkling wine gives me the vilest of hangovers.)

Dec 31, 2012
webgeekstress in Wine

Childhood Meals: What Did You Drink with Them?

We kids always had milk. We also had milk between meals: we each of us had a permanent "milk cup" in the fridge to which we would repair for a quick sip as desired during the day. During my childhood, my parents never had anything to drink with meals, although my dad always had tea after eating, and frequently had one (never two) beer before dinner. Even if we went out to a restaurant, we kids drank milk, and Mom and Dad mostly just drank water (or coffee at breakfast). It wasn't until I was a teenager that wine started making an appearance at dinner on holidays, and I was an adult before wine was any more frequent at meals.

Dec 21, 2012
webgeekstress in General Topics

Candy Cane Cookies

3 1/2 stars. They look pretty, I'll grant you, but they're fragile and rather bland. (Of course, my basic attitude towards sweets of any kind is that if there's no chocolate involved, what's the point?) They're also a pain to make. I doubt if I'll ever make these again.

Dec 19, 2012
webgeekstress in Recipes

Cold remedy

Sounds like the French hat cure: put a hat at the foot of the bed and take a bottle of brandy to bed with you. When you see two hats at the foot of the bed, stop drinking brandy and go to sleep.

Dec 16, 2012
webgeekstress in Home Cooking

Anyone on this board cooked from the Dirt Candy book?

I haven't bought the book (yet), but I did download the Kindle sample. From the sample, it looks as though the recipes themselves are presented in a standard format, and the graphic novel bit is just for the accompanying narrative.

Dec 06, 2012
webgeekstress in Vegetarian & Vegan

What should I do with a bag of dried fava beans?

Actually, in the book, it's a nice Amarone, not Chianti, which is a much better match.

Nov 27, 2012
webgeekstress in Home Cooking

Cocktail inspired vegetarian dishes

Well, gosh, a coffee pasta puts you half-way to a Black Russian: all you need is a vodka based pasta sauce. Maybe like this, http://www.chow.com/recipes/13655-sca... (leaving out the scallops, of course).

Nov 11, 2012
webgeekstress in Vegetarian & Vegan

Berlin Christmas 2012

I'm not familiar with Berlin, but I will say that you aren't likely to find a midnight Mass following Christmas Day anywhere in the world. Christmas *Eve*, yes; Christmas *Day*, no.

Sep 13, 2012
webgeekstress in Europe

Say what?? Cooking comments that baffle you

My mom similarly had a double oven, and she used the upper oven, not for storage, but for things like drying pans or metal utensils (so that they would dry without rusting) and defrosting frozen bread. Anytime we wanted to use the oven to actually bake something, we always had to check first to make sure it was empty.

May 22, 2012
webgeekstress in Not About Food

Birthday Cake–Flavored Kefir

Gee, maybe you needed to shake the bottle more?

May 10, 2012
webgeekstress in Features

CHOW's Intense Brownies

Mine came out crumbly. Seriously tasty, mind, and I'm not inclined to hold that too much against them, but they're going to a party and I'd have liked to see them present themselves better. Any idea where I might have gone astray? I did let them cool overnight before cutting.

Apr 23, 2011
webgeekstress in Recipes

Need Upscale Dinner Recommendations for Prague

I'm not familiar with any of the restaurants you cite, but my favorite splurge restaurant in Prague was Aromi, upscale Italian seafood in Vinohrady, http://www.aromi.cz Closest metro/tram stop is Jiriho z Podebrad. If you go, say "Hi" to Marek (manager) for me.
Aromi has a sister restaurant, Le Finestra, near Old Town Square, but I wasn't as taken with that one.

Mar 25, 2011
webgeekstress in Europe

Breakfast near Jack London Square?

Yet another vote for Buttercup. Not for light appetites, but at least you can skip lunch!

Jan 22, 2011
webgeekstress in San Francisco Bay Area

Czech Republic - Prague & Cesky Krumlov

As others have mentioned, Prague restaurants mostly shut down 24-26 December for Christmas, although most of the more tourist-oriented places will still be open.

The last two years, I ate at Rybi Trh (http://www.rybitrh.cz/index_en.html) just off Old Town Square, for Christmas eve. They have a special Christmas menu (http://www.rybitrh.cz/en/vanoce10.php), and if you wish, you can enjoy the traditional Czech Christmas fish soup followed by fried carp with potato salad (also traditional for Christmas Eve). If you finish early enough, you can get to Old Town Square for the live outdoor performance of Ryba's Czech Christmas Mass at 9 PM.

Some of my other Prague favorites were Aromi (Prague 2, upscale Italian seafood, www.aromi.cz), U Basnika Panve (Prague 2, more or less traditional Czech food - I always liked their Moravian sour soup and venison goulash, and they do a tasty svíčková - beef tenderloin in a vegetable-cream sauce - http://www.ubasnikapanve.cz/) and U Male Velryby (another seafood restaurant, this one in Mala Strana, Prague 1, http://www.umalevelryby.cz/en/restaur...

)

When I was living in Prague, I relied heavily on Czech Please, http://czechoutchannel.blogspot.com/ for dining ideas.

Dec 17, 2010
webgeekstress in Europe

Hotel Brunch around xmas time

I splurged on the holiday brunch buffet at Top of the Mark a few years ago. Magnificent view and the food was surprisingly good (although for the price, I shouldn't have been surprised). This year's holiday menu is at http://www.intercontinentalmarkhopkin...

-----
Top of the Mark
Number One Nob Hill, San Francisco, CA 94108

Nov 19, 2010
webgeekstress in San Francisco Bay Area

Brothy Leek Soup Recipe?

Well, of course, there's the famous Leek Soup from "French Women Don't Get Fat", at http://frenchwomendontgetfat.com/cont... Couldn't be simpler, and there's no reason you couldn't substitute broth for the water.

If you're looking for something more interesting, soupsong.com has some recipes that might suit you, including:
Welsh Leek Soup (Cawn Cennin): http://www.soupsong.com/zh3.html
Japanese Miso Soup with Tofu and Leeks, http://www.soupsong.com/rmiso1.html
Lemony Lentil Soup with Leeks and Scallops, http://www.soupsong.com/rlentil5.html
Japanese Clear Soup with Chicken and Leeks, http://www.soupsong.com/rsuimon2.html
Cock-a-Leekie Soup, http://www.soupsong.com/rcockale.html

Jul 21, 2010
webgeekstress in Home Cooking

Seeking recommendations for Oberammergau

I'll be in Oberammergau in mid-July, to attend the Passion Play. Any Chow-worthy recommendations?

Jun 20, 2010
webgeekstress in Europe

Kusadasi?

A search of the board didn't turn up anything. Does anyone have any Kusadasi recommendations. Being here in the off-season is especially limiting my options.

Thanks.

Jan 10, 2010
webgeekstress in Europe

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in Prague

Dinner suggestions?

Dec 18, 2007
webgeekstress in International Archive

restaurants with charm in Paris

Ah, well, if you're in the 18th (near Jules Joffrin), you want to go to La Table d'Eugène at rue Eugène Sue 18. Good, basic French cooking at a reasonable price, a neighborhood clientele, and an extremely congenial proprietor. Tell Joel (the proprietor) that l'Americaine says "hi".

Sep 13, 2007
webgeekstress in France

Saint Malo suggestions?

I'm going to be spending a week in Bretagne, based in Saint Malo. Suggestions, anyone? I'm looking forward to the oysters!

Apr 09, 2007
webgeekstress in France

Old School and Historical SF Locale

I'll go along with the Tadich Grill suggestion: just doesn't get older school that this.

Dec 15, 2006
webgeekstress in San Francisco Bay Area

Weeknight dinner option near Orpheum...Buzz 9 closed? Gyro King?

Soluna is just a couple of blocks over from the Orpheum, http://www.solunasf.com/. You'd probably have to stick to the "small plates" and "side dishes" portions of the menu to stay vegetarian, but even so, you could make a meal of it. (That, or call in advance and see if they could come up with something off the menu for you).

Dec 15, 2006
webgeekstress in San Francisco Bay Area

Occidental - Bistro des Copains - any reports?

I was there earlier this summer, in June, just a few weeks after they opened.

I started with the oyster sampler (2 each of 3 local oysters), which were beautifully fresh and served with a mignonette of red wine vinegar. I prefer a milder mignonette: while this one was tasty, I had to be very sparing to avoid overwhelming the poor oysters. I also had a glass of the Iron Horse Cuvee.

I went on to the three-course prix fixe, which that night consisted of the butter lettuce salad, the salmon, and the chocolate souffle cake; I forget what wine I paired it with.
The salad was pleasant enough: the dressing was light and, unlike the oysters' mignonette, did not overpower the leaves. My server alerted me that the salmon would be prepared medium rare by default, but alas, arrived well done. It was served over mashed potatoes. Since I was sitting at the bar, I was able to observe the dishes coming out of the kitchen, and I noticed that the mashed potatoes were pretty ubiquitous. The chocolate souffle cake surprised me a little: it was prepared in a sort of shallow, undersized (4-5 inch diameter) fluted quiche dish. It had been baked in the wood-burning oven, and so had risen and baked unevenly.

The service was friendly and attentive (and I had three separate people offer me bread).

Total for two glasses of wine, the oysters, the prix fixe, and tip: about $65

I would certainly go back if I were in the area.

They took over the old Naked Lady location, BTW.

Jul 26, 2006
webgeekstress in San Francisco Bay Area