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chowaholic's Profile

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Chipped vintage enamel

So what's the real scoop on chipped enamel, as far as safety goes? Chowhounds seem to say it's safe, but I read that the problem is that the enamel can continue to chip, and if it's old, may contain lead or cadmium, or can cut the throat (even though the chips are small).

Anyone know if there's validity to that warning?

I have my eye on a piece of vintage french enamelware, but it's got a chip, and I'm wondering whether it's ok to buy (and cook with).

May 04, 2013
chowaholic in Cookware

Is there really anything that is truly "flavorless"?

Agreed! Jicama tastes like crunchy water.

Sep 16, 2012
chowaholic in General Topics

Spelling & grammar errors on menus

I'm normally annoyed by spelling errors, but these days, at a mom and pop restaurant, I tend to find it endearing. In a world getting very slick, a lack of polish seems kind of reassuring.

But I suppose at a higher end place, it makes them seem careless and rushed.

Sep 16, 2012
chowaholic in Not About Food

Are There Any Truly Flavorless Foods?

Jicama doesn't have much happening.

Sep 16, 2012
chowaholic in Features

Would you ever give unsolicited advice to a stranger at a restaurant?

Interesting. It was all hearsay--I knew a girl who had lived in Germany as a teen, and was always receiving comments from strangers on various things she could do to help her skin/wardrobe/weight, etc. Maybe she just attracted the nosies!

But yeah, my experience with Ireland is that you'd never butt in there. My parents, who grew up there, found it nosey when people in the U.S. would ask what they do for work, or why they moved to the states, all things they considered personal, but are fair game for small talk here.

Sep 16, 2012
chowaholic in Not About Food

Fun, divey little food nerd places to hit up with a Brooklynite friend?

Well, if they're food nerds, they probably don't want to feel like they're in brooklyn when they travel, right? So maybe places kind of uniquely boston. Like Santarpios - worlds away from NY pizza, but so good, and a fun divey little scene. Or No Name Seafood or Leone's subs in Winter Hill? Or Punjabi Dhaba!! Deluxe Town Diner is fun. Belle Isle Seafood in Winthrop. Angela's in Eastie? Guess these places are a little out of the way.

Gendered representations of food in the media

Don't know if booze advertising counts, but definitely google "man's drink" or "whiskey man's drink" (there was a specific ad I was trying to find where a series of old men in a bar ridicule someone for drinking pansy drinks instead of a real man drink).

Other things that come to mind...

ManWich!!! remember that sloppy joe thing? "Don't gimme no boloney...I need a manwich meal!"

As a kid in the 80s, I remember seeing weird yogurt commercials with a lady with french-y sounding accent for yoplait...there was romantic music playing while a solitary woman lovingly spooned globs of pink yogurt into her mouth, and the voice sang "falling in love again". Weird, eh?

And the wrestler (who just died) yelling "Snap into a Slim Jim!" That seemed to play up the whole manly snack thing. Probably all beef jerky advertising.

Sep 15, 2012
chowaholic in Food Media & News

Milkshakes - Rhode Island, Southeastern MA

mmm cwaffee milk! tastes like coffee candy.

DO YOU EAT CAKE OVER THE SINK?

Lucky you with the mom who made chess pie! Ever get her recipe?

Sep 15, 2012
chowaholic in Not About Food

Would you ever give unsolicited advice to a stranger at a restaurant?

Yeah, many cultures are represented on this thread I think! I was thinking it would be fascinating to see the hometowns of posters on this thread listed. (but I guess I'm being nosey...ha!) A couple of unscientific spot checks turned up the MYOFB faction to be solidly Northeast. I love to look for patterns in culture, so here goes with some generalizations. It's my impression having lived in texas, boston, and NYC, that in the northeast, MYOB is the order of the day. But actually not MYOB'ing here has also resulted in some friendships that never would have happened otherwise. I won't say "don't order that", but maybe will say "this place is great" if they're examining the menu outside as I'm leaving. Or "where'd you get that creme ice? looks good" in the park. Or maybe say something is really good while standing at a counter or if someone's sitting next to me at a communal table...would probably never call over to people at another table though.

Within the northeast, there's variation too, culturally, right? It seemed esp. in New England (well, Boston), you just do NOT talk to strangers. In fact they can be very put off if you talk to them (I even got a dirty look once from an older middle aged woman in Boston for saying "excuse me" after she bumped into ME!!!)

And yet even though lots of NYC folk are MYOBers, I noticed that my first summer in new york I had random people come up to me while I was outside working on a project, chatting me up and eventually telling me their life stories. I think a lot of people move to (or stay in) New York because they actually love strangers, and love a reason to talk. Others, not so much...they like the big city anonymity which lets them avoid eye contact and all that stuff you gotta deal with in smaller towns.

Curious what it's like in other countries. I've heard Germany is big on unsolicited advice about what to wear, how to lose weight or treat your acne. That sounds fairly annoying. (And yet, I'd bet the same attitudes about social control are behind the sparkly clean train stations and prompt orderliness. ) I kind of feel like food is a safe topic to talk to strangers about (in a non-obnoxious way, of course), but then from this thread, maybe not!!

Sep 15, 2012
chowaholic in Not About Food

NYT: "Stanford Scientists Cast Doubt on Advantages of Organic Meat and Produce"

Well, if that's all you've got. I'd go with a quality log or ice cube font myself.

Sep 15, 2012
chowaholic in Food Media & News

NYT: "Stanford Scientists Cast Doubt on Advantages of Organic Meat and Produce"

Obviously, it was a figure of speech. Not "s&*&^ng where you ea"t means not screwing up the land that you depend on. When wild animals crap in a field, it's not screwing up their ecosystem. When we dump pesticides and practice monoculture farming in a way that strips the soil and pollutes the water, we are crapping the planet.

As for your arguments, they just don't hold up.

About manure and e coli outbreaks: both conventional agriculture and organic use manure. But organic use of it is far more regulated - has to be composted. Conventional farmers can use raw waste and sewage sludge. YUM! Walk through that pasture!

And most e coli outbreaks happen because of problems in the handling process later in the distribution chain, which is a problem with the massive scale of factory farming in both big conventional ag and big organic (which I'm not a fan of).

As for the dead zone, it's true that badly managed compost pollutes waterways as well, but organic doesn't have to use as much added nitrogen as conventional, because of soil fertility coming from nitrogen-fixing legumes in crop rotation and cover crops.

"And what would you suggest we print for the farmworkers? "Gainfully employed"? "Feeding America & Most of the Rest of the World Too"?"

How about "higher rates of leukemia, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, multiple myeloma, soft tissue sarcoma, lip, stomach and prostate cancer"?

Organic farming provides jobs too. Studies show it creates MORE jobs, up to 30% more.
And there's plenty of recent science showing true organic farming is capable of high yields that can feed the planet. In fact, it can perform better in periods of drought because the richer soil retains water.

In non-industrialized countries where labor is cheaper than pesticides and fertilizers, organic has been shown to INCREASE YIELDS 20-90%. Chemical companies have a lot of reason to not want people to know that, and to have us think pesticides/fertilizers are the only way to feed the world.

Sep 15, 2012
chowaholic in Food Media & News

NYT: "Stanford Scientists Cast Doubt on Advantages of Organic Meat and Produce"

So while you're at it, print something for the workers that grow pesticide covered food and work in the factory farms with antibiotic resistant diseased animals.

And print something for people who (used to be able to) make their living fishing in the Gulf of Mexico. That's where the Dead Zone is growing all the time, where the mississippi river dumps out, full of the agricultural runoff of 40% of the continental U.S., and the boats have to go out further and further all the time to find anything alive, hurting their already tough business.

Why not print something for our grand kids to tell them why we couldn't figure out how to make our food in a way that didn't strip their land and pollute their only planet.

To me, it's about what animals have always known... "Dont s$%t where you eat."

Sep 08, 2012
chowaholic in Food Media & News

After Shocking Video, McDonald's Drops Egg Supplier

Chickens are surprisingly smart, with personalities and social structures. Of course they suffer.

Here they are, through no choice of their own, giving up their lives and producing eggs for us. The least we can do in return is give them a decent life that is not filled with horrible suffering.

And let's face it, Sparboe isn't special. ALL factory farming is cruel. Can I imagine being trapped in a cage so small I could not turn around for more than an hour? How about my whole life? This is what they do to pigs, too, who are smarter than dogs. We would prosecute a dog owner who did this type of thing. Why are we so blind to the suffering of these animals we eat?

Every single one of us is responsible for this cruelty if we look the other way and still eat factory farmed meat.

And I am not saying we are not at the top of the food chain and shouldn't eat meat. I agree with the poster who pointed out that a quick death after a normal life is a very different thing to inflict upon a creature from a life of complete suffering.

Find a small local farmer to buy your meat from. Stock up a freezer and boycott these big companies.

Dec 16, 2011
chowaholic in Features

Brooklyn-style food swap in DC?

Hey folks,

I'm working on a project about food swapping, and am looking for people to talk to as part of my research. Any chance any of you guys who are interested in food swaps would be willing to chat with me for a few minutes? I would be most appreciative! It's for a grad school project and could turn into something awesome!!

Many thanks in advance,

c

Do bulk bins every get cleaned?

I'm with you two. Bulk is a great way to save on all this packaging that's going in the landfill.

As far as the issues of roaches or other pests--if people think all the same stuff doesn't happen behind closed doors in the production of supposedly "clean" packaged food, they're kidding themselves.

Agreed that customers sticking hands into bins is gross, but we are exposed to people's germs constantly anyway, and if we're not, our immune system will get sluggish.

Oct 09, 2011
chowaholic in Not About Food

10 minute meals

Black beans and rice + good fixins. Simple meal that never lets me down. You said you've got the rice...open a can of black beans and heat. (try "ranch style" or cuban style black beans, or pinto for a change) Top with green onions, shredded cheddar or crumbled feta, and eat with half a good ripe avocado (quick prep: split it, whack into the seed with a knife, then twist to remove, and scoop out the avocado).

if you want, eat with chips and salsa. Shoot, then you don't even need to wash a fork. Be luxurious and add fresh cilantro.

No real cooking involved, but pretty healthy (esp with brown rice) and very satisfying.

Jun 06, 2011
chowaholic in Home Cooking

Barley with Mushrooms and Green Beans

This was great! Chewy, nutty, shroomy awesomeness. Really liked the green beans in there too. I only had frozen beans, so I used those. I used some oyster and shiitake mushrooms I got at the Un. Sq. farmers market. They were really good in it (though probably shine more in other dishes). Served it with some sliced grass-fed steak.

I didn't have any parsley, but a grating of pecorino went really well with the flavors. Also, used low sodium chicken broth and a smidge of this mushroom concentrate stuff I have in a jar.

Only thing--I can't bring myself to toss that barley cooking liquid. Should be full of nutrients, as barley is apparently super healthy (http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tn...). It's really thick. A soup base, maybe?

Jan 19, 2010
chowaholic in Recipes

Best gelato/ice cream in brooklyn?

Fortunato Brothers for pistachio gelato! Can't say about the other flavors. The pistachio tastes intensely like...you guessed it, pistachios. Not too sweet, not too rich, but wonderfully smooth. And an old school, table service italian cafe experience.

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Fortunato Brothers
289 Manhattan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Nov 11, 2009
chowaholic in Outer Boroughs

Best Ice Cream in Brooklyn

Have you been to Fortunato Brothers' bakery in East Williamsburg (near Graham ave)? They have excellent pistachio gelato. It's not too sweet, and it's nice and dense and smooth (but not sickeningly rich, and I really like that about it). Sit down for table service and it will be brought to you, in a little metal dessert dish with a real spoon!

I found van leewen's from the truck to be sometimes great, but sometimes just ok. From the grocery store, the pints of Van Leeuwen's pistachio are always excellent.

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Fortunato Brothers
289 Manhattan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Nov 11, 2009
chowaholic in Outer Boroughs

Italian restaurant serving tortellini en brodo?

Thanks, that place looks great. Can't wait to try it.

To follow up on my own post, I found that Di Gianni Restaurant in Long Island City has it. I'm gonna head over the pulaski bridge and try some this week, hopefully.

Nov 10, 2009
chowaholic in Outer Boroughs

La Tavernetta

Sounds great. Can someone post a take-out menu?

Nov 08, 2009
chowaholic in Outer Boroughs

Italian restaurant serving tortellini en brodo?

(reposting from What's My Craving board)

Anyone know a restaurant that makes a great version of tortellini en brodo, that delicious broth with homemade tortellini? Any borough is ok.

I grew up next door to a lady from northern Italy, somewhere close to Switzerland. She used to have us over for long dinners and would kick things off with her Tortellini en Brodo. The broth was rich, homey and amazing, served with a sprinkling of grated cheese. It was maybe chicken broth, probably simmered with a parmigiano heel giving lots of flavor. The tortellini were delicate and hand made. Some kind of meat. I still remember trying to resist the urge to tip the wide soup bowl over to get the last drops.

It was mind-blowingly good and I'd be happy on a chilly day (like today) to find myself sitting in front of a steaming bowl.

Nov 06, 2009
chowaholic in Outer Boroughs

Tortellini en Brodo, per favore

I grew up next door to a lady from northern Italy, somewhere close to Switzerland. She used to have us over for long dinners and would kick things off with her soup called Tortellini en Brodo. The broth was rich, homey and amazing, served with a sprinkling of grated cheese. It was maybe chicken broth, probably simmered with a parmigiano heel giving lots of flavor. The tortellini were delicate and hand made. Some kind of meat. I still remember her oversized old-timey silver soup spoons and the wide flat soup bowls, and trying to resist the urge to tip the thing over to get the last drops.

It was mind-blowingly good and I'd be happy on a rainy day (like today) to find myself sitting in front of a steaming bowl.

I'm looking for restaurants in all the boroughs with delicious versions of this dish, with tortellini and broth that are home made (or at least seem that way).

Oct 27, 2009
chowaholic in Manhattan

non-factory farmed meat, dairy in the form of local delicious delights?

Hi Thanks for this...I didn't see your post in time. Great to know about these two though.

If I recall, what we ended up doing was hitting 5 Leaves in Williamsburg for the burger. I got something else, but I think she enjoyed the grass fed burger. However, the service was very odd there! Not eager to return.

We ate vegetarian Indian at Pongal (or is it pongsri?) in Murray Hill, which was very good. Had some gujarati curries.

Since then, I discovered Fornino pizza on Bedford Ave uses mostly local ingredients.

Thanks again!

Oct 22, 2009
chowaholic in Manhattan

south bronx tamale gold

do you know if they're there on weekdays for lunch...oh, say...today? I've got a hankerin.

Oct 22, 2009
chowaholic in Outer Boroughs

non-factory farmed meat, dairy in the form of local delicious delights?

I have a friend coming to visit Friday afternoon, leaving Sunday afternoon. She's a Selectatarian, which means that she will eat meat and dairy, but is very selective based on the source of the dairy or meat. Grossed out by unhealthy and inhumane factory farming practices, she vowed to only eat animal products that were produced in a humane way.

In practice, it translates into eating only animal products that are
- from small (preferably local) farms
- or are organic,
- or are humanely produced (some producers market this)
She's from New England, and is happy to eat local cheese because factory farms are rare (if not non-existent) in New England.

New York is the city where you can find anything, and I'm determined to find a few awesome things for my friend.

I'd like to find some of the following treats that meet the selectatarian criteria above:
- top of list: really really good pizza. thin crust. ny style? with cheese. (would try non-thin crust if good enough)
- burgers (these are easier to find, with lots of grass-fed options around like brgr...but where are the best ones? No crazy expensive ones, though)
- ice cream
- baked goods
- other cheap-ish chow-ish grub for dinner. Maybe one moderately priced meal? (I'm a student, so for me that means entree from $11-22).
- pork dishes...bbq, sandwiches (bahn mi?), pork chops, etc.
- sustainable fish
- a long shot...but an Irish/English breakfast? Other brunch/brekkie options?
- Steak? (obviously this won't be a cheap meal, but maybe a hanger steak or sirloin that wouldn't break the bank?)
- if there's an outstanding vegetarian place, always good to know
- one more thing...a bit off topic...best vegetarian dim sum?

Happy to travel. Live in Greenpoint, but will be getting all over Manhattan and Brooklyn on foot and by subway/bus.

Ethnicity of food does not matter--just that it's good. Bring on the weird organ meats if they're from a happy animal.

Price range - cheapish and moderate. I'm on a budget, and am more interested in hearing about cheaper options also because it's always easy to find high-end farm-to-table places. But I defnintely would love to know your favorite moderate spots too.

What I know about so far:

- Van Leeuwen Ice Cream truck in williamsburg...all local organic eggs/milk
- Butter Lane - cupcakes made with organic dairy
- Brgr (grass-fed burgers--I liked this place a lot)
- 5 Leaves (grass fed burgers...how are they there?)
- Porchetta (uses niman ranch hogs...should work, i think)
- Egg (for breakfast) Sparky's (dinner)
- Slice (is it any good??)
- Diner (think they have grass-fed steaks)
- Papacitos (ok, it's that they have awesome vegetarian meat-like options--seitan asada tacos, for example)

would love to expand the list!

Aug 19, 2009
chowaholic in Manhattan

Where to buy Grass fed beef ?

Check out eatwild.org. This site lets you find grass-fed beef sources by area. There are plenty in New England. I'm looking to find farms doing buying clubs with people in Boston, where either the farm delivers to one person, or one person does the drive in exchange for meat.

Jun 09, 2008
chowaholic in General Topics

Pastry Outrage in Brookline (apologies to cupcake outrage thread)

I second that.

Especially awesome is the adzuki bean cream puff (not sure what it's called). Pastry, filled with red bean paste, and cream, of course. My BF is in the room, and I told him what I was writing about. He said "Those f#$#$@s are good!"

Hungry Mother

Here is the web site...click on "Get your name on the wall" and you'll see what's going on.

http://www.hungrymothercambridge.com/