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General Knowledge's Profile

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Charleston's Best Restaurants for NYC Foodies?

Yeah, I actually think it's underrated for dinner. I could see why you might not think the brunch is worth the wait (because the wait is quite long on weekends) but that's one of my favorites for dinner. I tell everyone to go there, if you have a car.

Jan 24, 2010
General Knowledge in Southeast

What's For Dinner? Part XIX

I'd guess gluten free

Don't Get Suckered on Valentine's Day

Plus, oysters have the reputation of being an aphrodisiac, so you risk seeming less romantic, and more like, "we're totally doing it tonight". Mussels would be good though, if you know she likes seafood.

Jan 19, 2010
General Knowledge in Features

ISO Your Most Tried-and-True Healthy Vegetarian Weeknight Staples

In the "make a big batch" category, you can make a lot of veggie-heavy enchiladas. My standard is black beans, zucchini, corn, and monterrey jack cheese. Use a bit more sauce than you would otherwise, I think the veggies soak up the liquid more than the meat or cheese would.

In the "easy, throw together weekday" staple, we have huevos rancheros, or chilaquiles as one of my cookbooks calls it (Almost Meatless, by Joy Manning and Tara Desmond). Basically, I just put a can of whatever tomatoes I have on hand, some garlic, and either canned or fresh chiles on the stove with a can of black beans. Let that simmer while you crisp some corn tortillas, then fry an egg or two for each person. Layer a tortilla or two with the bean mixture and top with the egg(s). Pretty quick and I usually have the ingredients in the house so it's become a weeknight staple.

Along the same lines but more Italian in nature, you can layer polenta cakes, spaghetti sauce, sauteed greens, and an egg with some Parmesan on top.

This is another recipe I like:
It has sausage in it, but only 2 links for 6 servings, so I figured if you're just cutting back on the meat consumption, you might enjoy it.

Don't know 'nothin 'bout kale & quinoa - can you help?

I have made creamed kale before - I would look for a recipe for it, rather than just subbing it in for spinach. Since it's your first time eating kale and you're not a vegetarian, I'd recommend this soup, or one like it:
The sausage, kale, and white bean combination is very nice - you see it in a lot of recipes, and it's great for this time of year.

Quinoa, I'm a little less familiar with, but it would be very good for a lunch salad. (Wouldn't even need to be reheated.) Maybe something like this:

2010 is here and I'm ISO vegetables that even my kids will eat.

I was going to mention pureed parsips too. If the flavor seems too sharp, I'd add in a few potatoes, it mellows the parsnips a bit.

Home Cooking trends this decade. What were yours?

Ha, I was reading all the above posts and agreeing - yes, I'm using more local and seasonal foods, making more things from scratch, etc. But those are all things I've started in the last 2 years. 10 years ago, I was a college freshman and the only things I ate were grilled cheese and easy mac. So yes, in the last 10 years, I have learned to cook for myself, learned to plan a weekly menu, eat vegetables, use better ingredients, and eat things that take longer than 3 minutes to prepare. (Though I did just have a grilled cheese yesterday, maybe I haven't changed as much as I thought!)

What do you cook for non-chowhounds?

I think it depends on the personality of the guests. I know lots of non-chowhounds, and most are the type that don't usually go outside of their comfort zone, but they will if someone recommends it or serves it to them. Then there's always a few that will look at a spinach and bechamel sauce lasagna and say they aren't eating gross green lasagna.

My in-laws only have one cookbook in their house (Better Homes & Gardens, with the gingham cover) and think my husband and I eat weird food, but they've liked pretty much everything I've cooked for them, and my father-in-law asked for the recipe for a shrimp risotto.

I'd probably just cook what I would normally cook for guests, but maybe lean toward meals that at least look familiar.

Chinese Restaurant Christmas Day (Charleston, SC)

You could call Red Orchids to see if they'll be open, that's my favorite sit-down Chinese place. If not, I saw a sign at the Tasty Thai on King St. saying they'll be open Christmas Day. It's not Chinese, of course, but I thought I'd share.

Dec 23, 2009
General Knowledge in Southeast

Moderate-Cheap Eats in Charleston,S.C.

I'd recommend going to some of the nicer restaurants for lunch, because everyone seems to charge about the same amount at lunchtime. I enjoy SNOB and Blossom for lunch, both have many meals available for around $8-12.

For dinner in the moderate range, definitely Hominy Grill, and I also like Virginia's on King. Both of those are Southern style.

Outside of downtown, you could go out to Sullivan's Island and go to Poe's or Home Team Barbecue (Home Team also has another location, in West Ashley). For burgers, Sesame in North Charleston is my favorite, and they just opened a new location at the mall in West Ashley. For affordable Italian, there's Mondo's, on James Island.

Dec 22, 2009
General Knowledge in Southeast

Charleston SC shrimp and grits

Huh, guess I'm in the minority for liking cheese in my shrimp and grits. When I make it at home, though, I put the cheese in the grits, not the sauce.

Dec 09, 2009
General Knowledge in Southeast

Kinda complicated, kid cooking dinner advice needed

I'd suggest getting her a kid-friendly cookbook, then trying out some of the recipes together. Once you've done them together, she can probably do them again by herself. I remember cooking fairly often at that age, and I had a favorite cookbook called Kid's Cooking ( (I can't believe it's still available in the same edition, I had that thing 20 years ago.) That particular cookbook might be a bit below her, age-wise, but it looks like there are many others out there, like this Southern Living one (


I remember making oven-baked fish sticks, spaghetti, tacos, and pizza (with pre-made crust). As far as cooking with her and having her reheat, I would do some big batches of soup, like vegetable soup, black bean soup, and chili. Of course lasagna would be good too, though I don't know how that would go with non-cow based dairy.

For the lack of dicing ability, does her family have a small food processor, or do you have one you could lend her? That's how I chopped onions and garlic practically until I left for college (both because I have an overprotective mom and quite sensitive tearducts). Very helpful.

NEED RECS for Charleston at Xmas

You might like to go to the farmer's market in Marion Square (Calhoun St. between Meeting and King) - it's on Saturday mornings, from 8 until 2. There veggie sellers and prepared food vendors - crepes, pasta, etc.

Dec 06, 2009
General Knowledge in Southeast

Charleston SC shrimp and grits

The breakfast portion actually does come in a bowl, or it did last time I had it.

I recommend the shrimp and grits at Boulevard Diner. Comes with a fried pickle.

Dec 06, 2009
General Knowledge in Southeast

Is Good Asian possible in Charleston SC?

Tasty Thai just opened another location downtown, where Little Thai Too used to be.

Dec 02, 2009
General Knowledge in Southeast

Santi's (Charleston, SC) was awful

Do you know of some other place that makes better homemade chips? I really don't know of too many places in Charleston that make homemade chips at all, so maybe I'm just missing out, but I love those chips.

The beans are saucy. What do you want from beans? I don't like mine dry.

I don't have anything to say about your veggie burrito because I've never had that menu item, though I've had several other dishes and enjoyed them all.

I'm sorry you seem to hate every meal you eat here in Charleston.

Nov 30, 2009
General Knowledge in Southeast

Spending first Thanksgiving in Charleston

You said the $40 range, not the all-you-can-eat-for-$30 range.

Nov 25, 2009
General Knowledge in Southeast

Santi's (Charleston, SC) was awful

Sorry you had a bad meal. It's one of my favorite places in Charleston and I go there at least once a month. Never had a bad experience. I recommend the tacos and the chimichanga. The chips are amazing. It does get crowded, I usually try to get there around 6:30 or 7, and there's usually no wait and good service.

Nov 25, 2009
General Knowledge in Southeast

Help fill out my vegetarian Thanksgiving feast

Just saw this yummy-looking menu from Cooking Light:

The main is a Mushroom Shallot Struedel, which sounds like a nice centerpiece to a meal.

Help fill out my vegetarian Thanksgiving feast

I haven't tried any of these, but I think the stuffed pumpkin is brilliant idea, and may do one of them for my "My in-laws don't do Thanksgiving right so I'm going to do a Thanksgiving dinner my way the Saturday after" dinner.

This one's for acorn squash, which would also be good, but you could substitute pumpkins:

I like the idea of using root vegetables though, and I can't find a recipe for it. Maybe look at some of the Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie recipes and use the filling for that, but put it in a pumpkin?

Help! Term for politically/socially-motivated responsible carnivore?

I'm not sure why you responded to my comment by arguing against vegetarianism. I'm not a vegetarian, and I didn't say you should be. I'm against factory farms, because they're extremely bad for the environment, the animals, the farmer, and for me.

The Basics: How to Make Pumpkin Pie

I know these are like the "Thanksgiving made easy!" type of recipes, but if you're going to make pumpkin pie from the canned stuff, you can probably just follow the recipe on the back of the can.

Nov 17, 2009
General Knowledge in Features

How To Prepare A Pan For Frying

Someone posted this video a while back and it was incredibly helpful to me, as I had just moved from nonstick pans to cladded stainless.

Help! Term for politically/socially-motivated responsible carnivore?

Coming up with too fancy of a term for it will probably just piss off the unapologetic factory farm fans (See above!), but I'd go with something simple like "responsible omnivore"

Help! Term for politically/socially-motivated responsible carnivore?

It's really not self-righteous to be concerned about how the food we eat has been raised. It's not just marketing, it has a huge effect on your health and the health of the planet.

Fighting Wine Snobbery

Yeah, plus that virgin drink one wasn't about alcohol, it was about non-alcoholic drinks.

Nov 10, 2009
General Knowledge in Features

Hold Your Wineglass the Right Way

I'm the opposite of ktb615, I hold my whites by the glass because they come out of my refrigerator too cold in my opinion. Reds I hold by the stem because they're already too warm, having not been chilled at all. At restaurants, I hold by the stem because they have them at the right temperature.

Oct 29, 2009
General Knowledge in Features

Any tortillerias in Charleston?

I'm just back from visiting my sister in Baltimore, and she is lucky enough to live around the corner from an authentic shop that makes their own tortillas and tortilla chips. Every time I visit I pick up a couple bags. I'm wondering if we have something similar in the Charleston area. I feel like North Charleston (where I live) should have one, but I haven't seen one. Does anyone know of any?

Oct 21, 2009
General Knowledge in Southeast

Uses for old spinach?

I like to make spinach pesto if I have a bunch of spinach left over and about to go bad. Toss with fettucine and it goes quickly.

Vegetable Sides with Pizazz?

I think something simple and green would be nice, but maybe topped with a nice homemade vinaigrette rather than just the normal butter or olive oil? I made a yummy broccoli with bacon vinaigrette recently. I don't know if that would be too meaty of a meal with the steak. Or maybe saute some green beans with some shallots and garlic, instead of just plain green beans.