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Railway Dininig. Ever experience it ?

I've been on a few trains with dining cars but the most memorable was Mombasa to Nairobi, overnight, in 1979. We were backpacking in Kenya aged 22 yo, and the train was beautiful, carved wooden sleeper carriages with seats that flipped into bunk beds, fully made up with sheets and blankets while we were in the dining car. It was a beautifully served dinner with tablecloths and china, dining while zooming through Tsavo game reserve. Every stop had locals running over to the doors selling sugar cane and grilled corn on the cobs. Breakfast was also properly served back in the dining car. Kids lined the tracks waving during daylight. Very memorable that journey though I do not remember what we ate.

Jul 20, 2014
smartie in General Topics

Hair found in the food...

my hair sheds all the time and I have tons of hair. Ditto the dogs. I know it's nasty to find hair in our food but it's likely the least of what's really lurking in food (insects, dirty restaurant kitchen debris, bits of bandaids).

Jul 14, 2014
smartie in Not About Food
1

Hair found in the food...

Isn't it odd that if we find one of our own hairs in our food it's not an issue, even though our own hair may not be freshly washed! Even my own dogs' hairs are not a big deal to me, but someone else's dog's hair or their hair is icky.

Jul 13, 2014
smartie in Not About Food

Unusual restaurant requests - and responses

The girl at the register at Panera could not understand my request for a grilled ham and cheese without the ham. The conversation went something like, 'you don't want the ham in a grilled ham and cheese?' 'No just grilled cheese'. 'But we don't have grilled cheese'. 'I know that but I don't eat ham'. ' So you want grilled ham and cheese without the ham?' 'Yes'. 'But we only have grilled ham and cheese'. 'Aaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrgggggggggggg. Called manager over, he goes tap tap tap on the register and it was done.

Jul 08, 2014
smartie in Not About Food
1

Palm Beach County closings 2014

I heard it will become a Rustic Inn (Ft Laud).

Jul 05, 2014
smartie in Miami - Fort Lauderdale

I'm so over...

I'll never forget a menu in a British hotel restaurant where the special was 'a conflict of duck'.

Jul 03, 2014
smartie in General Topics
1

I'm 8 wks. pregnant and HATE FOOD. :) Need help...

The nausea, at least for me, settled down at about 12-14 weeks. I could barely brush my teeth without throwing up. I still remember feeling nauseous before I knew I was pregnant, certain food smells would set me off. To this day I still feel sick if I smell banana bread. My youngest is 23.

Jul 02, 2014
smartie in General Topics

Desperately Seeking Indian Food In PBC

I did a write up on this a couple months ago. I liked the food which was as close to British Indian as I've had so far in S Fl. Except the naan still sucked.

Wonder what the new Punjab is like?

Jul 01, 2014
smartie in Miami - Fort Lauderdale

I'm so over...

Infused is annoying. A raspberry and passion fruit infused vodka/cheesecake/salad dressing.

Jul 01, 2014
smartie in General Topics

Strange restaurant food presentation

It's not a chain and I called the owner, he was grateful to know that there were so many uncut tomatoes in a bowl and will talk with his kitchen staff now and have one of them make the item and then remake it correctly.

Jun 30, 2014
smartie in General Topics
1

Strange restaurant food presentation

It didn't come across as a lost leader, more a case of the afternoon kitchen staff tipped out a lot of tomatoes into a wide soup bowl and threw in some chopped mozzarella and a few onions. I'd be amazed if that's how it was supposed to be served.

Jun 30, 2014
smartie in General Topics

Strange restaurant food presentation

We tried a new pizza/Italian place today. It may be a chain but not a well known one. Anyway, I ordered the tomato, onion and mozzarella salad which was $7.

When it arrived it was about a pound and a half of whole cherry tomatoes (not kidding there must have been 50 tomatoes), some cubes of fresh mozzarella and a few bits of red onion cut higgledy piggledy. I've never seen so many tomatoes served as a salad portion. I ate about a third of the tomatoes and asked for a box to bring the rest home. They gave them to me in half pound boxes just like you'd buy at the supermarket. I can't see how they make any profit if they serve this salad like that!

Jun 30, 2014
smartie in General Topics

Tomatoes 2014

It's too hot now in S Florida for tomatoes. My plants are toast but I had 4 months of nice tomatoes.

Jun 25, 2014
smartie in Gardening

Palm Beach County openings 2014

One of the local rags today wrote that there will be a Five Guys and a Tijuana Flats opening on the Linton/US 1 corner where there is construction.

Jun 25, 2014
smartie in Miami - Fort Lauderdale

Top 10 Gross UK Foods?

So tired of British food bashing threads. Just spent a week back in London and had incredibly good food everywhere, menus were interesting compared to the same items on so many American menus.

Americans also eat canned tomato soup, canned spaghetti, beets, rhubarb to name a few. Grits is not unlike semolina/tapioca in consistency.

Tell me where food in most US diners/sports bars and average restaurants is good? I see so little variation between the gazillions of chains all around the US that I would be hard pressed to tell you which one I am in.

Jun 19, 2014
smartie in Not About Food
2

ever taken a paid for cooking class??

Yes when I was a young married mom with kids I took a dinner party cooking course. It was so good our group did a second course. I learned a lot and still use some of the recipes.

Jun 19, 2014
smartie in General Topics

The strangest/most interesting bathroom audio?

There was a bar (now closed) in Hampstead, London that played Edith Piaff really loudly in the ladies loo, and in the men's it was extremely loud farting and wind passing noises.

Jun 17, 2014
smartie in Not About Food
1

Curry Rules the Food World!!

I copy a very old S Indian woman who used to cook for my grandmother in England when roasting a chicken. Cut an orange or lemon in half, squeeze the juice all over the skin and put both halves inside the chicken with a cut up onion.

Now season the chicken with salt and pepper, ground ginger and a good sprinkling of curry powder, roast at 350 for 2 hours. Make gravy using giblets and juices from the pan in the pan just before serving the chicken. It's not overwhelmingly curry flavored but it really is good.

Jun 17, 2014
smartie in General Topics

Friends who can’t cook but insist on doing it

Yes I have a step sister who CANNOT cook. Undercooked or overcooked chicken and a bag of salad or microwaved vegetables is her thing. She doesn't like food so it's no surprise. Supermarket fruit bought 3 days ago for dessert.
Unfortunately she has the best house for our rather large family to congregate. So we all hit on an idea. She would provide the venue and we would provide the food, but she also provides the bagged salad. Potlucks are the best way, with the family discussing amongst ourselves who's bringing what.

May 31, 2014
smartie in Not About Food
2

A hot mango dessert?

I wish but it's almost impossible to get rhubarb in S Fl.

I love some of these ideas, yes a chicken and mango curry is a definite for next week.

Anybody want mangoes? There are millions of them around my house.

May 31, 2014
smartie in Home Cooking

Jamming, canning and preserving 2014

I made loquat jam a few weeks ago but it was pretty bleh without much flavor.
Can mangoes be made into a jam? Would I need pectin or boil the pits? My neighborhood is awash with them and I hate to see them wasted.

May 31, 2014
smartie in Home Cooking

I scream, You scream... What are you pet peeves about ice cream?

I would like to see somewhere to set the cone down while you're paying. In the UK many ice cream stores have a rack where the cone fits, I can never jiggle the dripping cone and my wallet. Worse when buying more than one.

May 31, 2014
smartie in General Topics
2

Desperately Seeking Indian Food In PBC

ooh I'll try it. They can do well in Boca but they have to get to the Brits of which there are thousands., and it has to be good and what we are used to in the UK.

May 30, 2014
smartie in Miami - Fort Lauderdale

A hot mango dessert?

well I made a mango crisp last night but yikes too much sugar. Forgot how sweet mangoes can be. They don't have much flavor yet as they are windfalls that have ripened in the kitchen.
Thanks for all the suggestions. I will try some if not all! My freezer will be full of pulp soon enough.

May 28, 2014
smartie in Home Cooking

A hot mango dessert?

Being lucky enough to have as many mangoes as I want free in my S Fl neighborhood, any suggestions for a hot dessert. I know I can make smoothies, mango margaritas, salsa etc but wondered what a crumble or crisp would be like with cooked mangoes.
Currently it's just windfalls, they usually take a few days to ripen in the kitchen and they are not very sweet yet but juicy. In the next 2 weeks I'm going to be able to have hundreds of ripe ones, seems so sad to let the squirrels and flies get to them. I know the pulp freezes well enough.
Suggestions for cooking with mangoes are greatly appreciated.

May 27, 2014
smartie in Home Cooking

Sad to report the passing of Veggo

Oh that's too sad. I said 'oh no' out loud when I read this. sorry for your loss and he will be missed here on CH.

May 27, 2014
smartie in Site Talk

What do you love best about the deli?

The salt beef bars of London where I grew up, Blooms, and others that sadly no longer exist like The Nosherie, The Windmill Salt Beef Bar. I can still remember the taste of the lockshen pudding from Blooms.

May 26, 2014
smartie in General Topics

Who makes the best frozen pot pie?

If you want calories and a tasty CPP with fresh carrots and potatoes try the Cheesecake Factory's chicken and biscuits. The portion is enough for about 3 meals but it's damn good.

May 26, 2014
smartie in General Topics

Why Airplane Food is so Bad

You can order a special meal such as vegetarian, kosher, Indian vegetarian (usually good on British Airways). You get served first which is great, and for some reason you don't get the icky desserts but fresh fruit.

May 26, 2014
smartie in Food Media & News

So annoyed with dinner guest

absolutely! He can buy his own take out. Or tell him to pick up a Dominos pizza on route.

May 26, 2014
smartie in Not About Food