Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >

Lynndsey Rigberg's Profile

Title Last Reply

Restaurants in Santa Monica with a good back room for mini-Reunion?

Hi Chowhounds, my old school friends want to organize a small reunion for our class and we're wondering if anyone can recommend a nice restaurant in Santa Monica that isn't too fancy, but tasty, and has a good room we could have to ourselves?

Thanks for any suggestions!

Public School's cauliflower recipe please

Thanks for your suggestions - I wanted to report back. I tried 3 different recipes, the battered one also...and I think the closest recipe to PS310 was a dipped in buttermilk/egg wash and then seasoned bread crumbs. I made 2 heads for a party of 20 people....and it disappeared in seconds. Guests made comments like "addictive" "eat this like candy" so I guess it was a hit (how close it comes to PS310's actual recipe, who knows but the guests liked it!

Public School's cauliflower recipe please

My husband and I went to Public School in Culver City for the first time last week and I cannot stop thinking about their amazing fried cauliflower appetizer. Does anyone have a recipe that remotely comes close? I have a party this weekend and would love to serve this dish. Thanks for any recipes and/or suggestions!

Jul 13, 2015
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

Where to buy fresh chicken livers in West LA?

Dear Chowhounds, I've been invited to Passover and volunteered to bring something. I was tasked with making Chopped Liver. It seems easy enough, but where do I buy the freshest chicken livers in West LA?

Many thanks!

fried tendon chip recipe - need advice

Hi Chowhounds,

I'm going to attempt the fried tendon chip recipes I've seen popping up everywhere to take to a dinner party next week.

I've read 10 different recipes now and there are different suggestions for how long the sliced tendon needs to dehydrate in order to produce the airiest, crispiest chip.

Some recipes says dehydrate it until very hard....and other recipes say dehydrate to the point where it's still a little flexible, but NOT hard.

Anyone have some experience with this and have some wisdom to offer?


Aug 23, 2014
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

Question about Kombucha with green tea

What a great idea! Thanks for the feedback!

Jul 08, 2014
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

Question about Kombucha with green tea

The green part is on the bottom and side of the SCOBY. Thanks for the feedback!

Jul 08, 2014
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

Question about Kombucha with green tea

Hi Chowhounds, I've dived into the kombucha craze and started brewing some at home. I'm just starting to brew my fourth batch today when I noticed the SCOBY had a fine sprinkling of light green dots. It did not look like mold. It look like green tea residue. Or so I think.

For the rest of you kombucha brewing experts, have you had this experience with your SCOBY picking up some of the green tea residue?

I then tasted it…and I "think" it tasted fine. I say "think" because I've read so many blogs/articles about Kombucha turning bad and so on that I am a little nervous.

What's the worse thing that can happen if you taste some "bad" kombucha?

Thanks for any information!

Jul 07, 2014
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

pea tendrils with garlic - restaurant secret?

Just wanted to thank all of you for your input.

Cornstarch and chicken stock were the key. I DO have a wok with a high BTU so heat wasn't the issue. But t never used cornstarch before when I cooked the veggies, it never released enough liquid to justify cornstarch…so I added it anyway this time, and sure enough, once you take the veggie off the heat, liquid continues to release but the cornstarch helps to keep it coagulated.

Success! Thanks again Chowhounds!

Jun 16, 2014
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

pea tendrils with garlic - restaurant secret?

I'm sure you Chowhounds all know what I'm talking about - Chinese restaurants make the most amazing "do miao" with "suan yu" (pea tendrils with garlic oil).

I've researched and attempted every recipe I can find online. I have a wok, so the heat is not the issue. There's a "flavor" the restaurant version has that I can't capture. A "slickness" that makes the garlic cling to the veggies, but isn't overly oily.

Anybody think they've got the recipe and have cracked the code on this delicious dish? Thanks!

May 21, 2014
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

Got suggestions for a "La Mar" type of view but without the noise? [San Francisco]

Ok, thanks to you SF Chowhounds, I got a great suggestion for La Mer for a little get together. It was tasty, but it was so noisy, very hard to hear fellow dinner companions talk. Any other suggestions for something along the embarcadero with a view that nice but without all the noise? Thanks!

Hinoki & The Bird - review

Just went there Wednesday night to celebrate a major milestone with another couple and had to share my thoughts given the reviews I've seen here.

First of all, I used to LOVE Sona. So I was really looking forward to some of David Myers interpretations on some classic dishes.

Overall, the vibe is cool. We were seated outside by the fire so it was cozy and visually lovely. But WOW was the music loud, we really had to shout about the music to hear each other.

The food was really mixed:

Crab toast - enh. It was so-so.
Lobster roll - totally bland and underwhelming.
Kale salad - boring and too salty.
Baked yam with lardons and creme fraiche - this was my favorite dish.
Black cod - enh.
Short rib - meat was tough.
Fried chicken - SO BORING. I was expecting KFC (Korean Fried Chicken) or JFC (Japanese Fried Chicken), but it was neither. It was just bland and boring.
Maitake marinated mushrooms - too salty.

Praline ice cream - reminded me of the wonderful hazelnut gelato we'd have in Paris, so this was 2 thumbs up.
Japanese cotton cheesecake - I know how to make this at home so I was not impressed with their version.

The food was not great, but the service was really excellent. With a bottle of wine, our bill was $650 for 4 people.

Again, I really wanted to like it, but found the entire experience underwhelming.
: (

Casual but tasty place to meet around 20 people?

Hi there, thanks for this idea, but these are perhaps a little too casual. Someone suggested the Tango Room at Fairmont hotel....something like that in terms of scale and easy to gather, but not so stuffy (and I doubt the food and booze are any good). Thanks for brainstorming!

Casual but tasty place to meet around 20 people?

Hi SF Chowhounds, we're getting an informal group of 15-20 people together somewhere at a bar/restaurant in SF. Can you think of some place we can all go? I don't want to have to book a room or anything. A big spacious place where it'll be easy for folks to come and go. Buy their own drinks and food, etc. An EASY experience all around, ya know? Thanks for any suggestions! A nice view would be a plus!

n/naka followup

Hi Chowhounds, thanks to the great reviews of n/naka here, my husband and I decided to celebrate there last weekend. The atmosphere was quiet, calm, zen, lovely, thoughtful - just like the dishes. We had the Chef's tasting menu - 9 courses, and walked away perfectly satisfied.

#1: started off with an Uni amuse bouche in a glass (no picture) on top of a grated potato ball. It was interesting texturally.

#2: perfectly seared scallop and half a shrimp on carrot puree

#3: Toro in ponzu on ice - delicate, cold, delicious.

#4 Sashimi selection: tuna, skipjack, yellowtail, and an oyster

#5: Seabass in ponzu and grated mountain yam - I have never liked the raw grated yam before but it was so delicious and added nice body to the broth.

#6: My favorite dish of the night: pasta with roe, cream, white truffle oil and abalone. I wanted another serving and would've licked the bowl if no one were around.

#7: Tender beef cooked on top of a magnolia leaf on top of a charcoal brazier.

#8: 6 pieces of sushi - (not all photographed here): shrimp, uni, mackeral, and I forget what else. Each piece was so delicate and ridiculously fresh.

#9: Black sesame creme brulee with red bean cheesecake and a dab of ice cream.

It was all amazing. Wonderful balance. Felt very satisfied. Not one dish I didn't love!

BRAVO! We're definitely coming back!

any more reviews of Hinoki and the Bird since February?

Sadly, no one has responded! I will just have to report back to you myself after I go! : )

any more reviews of Hinoki and the Bird since February?

Hi Chowhounds, I went through all the Hinoki and the Bird reviews posted here but haven't seen any new ones since February (when it first opened). Hubby and I are about to go there in a few weeks to celebrate an anniversary. Any new thoughts on what to order/avoid?


Happy Hours at Asian restaurants in West LA?

Hi Chowhounds,

Last week, I found myself on Sawtelle with my two kids at 6pm looking for a tasty place to eat. We wound up at Robata-ya, and what really surprised me was that they had a "happy hour" menu. Halleleujah! I didn't realize Asian restaurants did happy hours (maybe just this one).

And that's why I'm writing - please let me know of any other Asian happy hours you know of in the West LA area.

BTW, it was a short menu - skewered livers, skin, cartilage, california roll, crispy tofu and some beer. But the prices were great and we had a really great meal.

Thanks so much for sharing!

Tasty and QUIET restaurant in Monterey Park or SGV?

Hi Chowhounds, I am meeting a business client tomorrow (Saturday) around 2pm. I'm looking for a tasty and quiet place tomorrow to meet so we can have a nice meal but also talk...and hear each other. Got any ideas? Thanks so much, any asian cuisine will do (chinese, taiwanese, shanghainese, vietnamese, thai, etc)

HELP! Why are my potstickers/dumplings so dry?

Sorry, I forgot to mention that I DID use napa cabbage - lots of it too - it was finely chopped up ( I used my vitamix and did a wet chop technique)- I used an entire head for 6lbs of pork. But maybe not enough? Thanks.

Oct 04, 2012
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

HELP! Why are my potstickers/dumplings so dry?

Hi Bkeats, I know my XLB, and I'm definitely not trying to make that (but I do love those dumplings!).

I'm just comparing my potstickers to restaurant and store bought ones, and the texture of my filling just doesn't seem as moist. But you have a point. I may have unrealistic expectations.
I wish I could taste someone elses' homemade dumplings - that perspective would help!

Thank you everyone!!!

Oct 03, 2012
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

HELP! Why are my potstickers/dumplings so dry?

I had some pork leftover so I just made a few more potstickers. I'm attaching the photo here.
I also made a few frozen ones bought from 99 Ranch. I cooked both up and had my family do a blind taste test. Everyone said both had a nice flavor, but everyone preferred the store bought one - they described it as moister. The only think I can think of is the store bought ones have a very high ratio of vegetables. Also, I wonder if they salt and drain the water out of their vegetables like I have been doing?

FattyDumplin said they use to mix their meat mixture alot or it would come out "grainy". And that's actually a good description for my dumplings too. The meat seems a little, well, grainy.

Again, I saw the pork butt I chose - it had a fair amount of fat! Sorry everyone, this issue is just driving me crazy. There are so many dishes I do well, but not this dish....which should be my native dish! Grrrr!

Oct 03, 2012
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

HELP! Why are my potstickers/dumplings so dry?

I didn't use corn starch this time, but it is an ingredient in the majority of the recipes I find online!

Oct 03, 2012
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

HELP! Why are my potstickers/dumplings so dry?

Hi Everyone,

So I took everyone's advice into consideration.
The dumpling party happened this past Saturday. I went to Ranch 99, picked a nice looking piece of pork butt, had them ground 6 pounds for me.

Chopped up fresh water chestnuts, fresh chives, garlic, ginger, added some sherry, sesame oil, a little sea salt.

No cornstarch AT ALL.

Yet, once again, my dumplings came out dry. They had a nice flavor, but just weren't juicy AT ALL.
I seriously don't know what's up. And I'm Chinese American too - this is just too shameful! My ancestors are probably rolling over in their graves!!!! Ai-yah!

Oct 03, 2012
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

HELP! Why are my potstickers/dumplings so dry?

Hi ipsedexit, when I boil the dumplings, I cook them just until they float to the top.
When I do potstickers, I put a little oil in the pan, brown the bottoms, then add 1/3 cup of water, cover and steam until the skin looks cooked through. Usually around 3-4 minutes.
The skin is never overcooked...but the interior is dry. : (

Oct 03, 2012
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

HELP! Why are my potstickers/dumplings so dry?

Thanks for responding ipsedixit - the recipe I used was Steamy Kitchen's the letter (see below)!
There's the cornstarch slurry for the wrapping portion, but also 2 TB of cornstarch that goes into the meat mixture itself.

Do you think I should skip the draining the vegetables? Wouldn't the natural vegetable juices help keep it "juicy"? Thanks!

1 package of frozen dumpling skins, defrosted overnight in refrigerator or 40 minutes room temp (do not microwave or set in water)
3/4 pound raw shrimp, shelled and deveined
3 stalks green onions, cut into 2 inch sections
1/2 cup canned bamboo shoots
1/2 pound ground pork
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
1 tablespoon rice wine (or dry sherry)
for the slurry: 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1/4 cup water in a small bowl
cooking oil

Sep 28, 2012
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

HELP! Why are my potstickers/dumplings so dry?

Hi Chowhounds,

I'm spontaneously doing a dumpling party this weekend for friends who've never wrapped them before. I conveniently forgot my last experience in trying to make them turned out badly - my wrapping technique is good, but the filling was so dry! Can you help me figure out why?

Theory #1: 90% of the recipes I'm finding online all suggest CORNSTARCH. Perhaps it soaks up all the "juice"?

Theory #2: Could it be the ground pork I bought from Ranch 99? It look like there was a lot of fat in it, so I really don't know!

I think my ratio of vegetables (finely chopped napa cabbage, salted and drained). was right?

Thanks for your thoughts, and any foolproof dumpling recipes you want to share!

Sep 28, 2012
Lynndsey Rigberg in Home Cooking

best raw hamburger - frozen or fresh?

Hi Chowhounds,

Question: I am having a BBQ (hot dogs and hamburgers) and serving around 60-80 people.

Is it crazy of me to make the burgers from fresh raw meat?
Should I just buy the frozen patties like everyone else?
Is there such a thing as good quality frozen beef patties?

At Costco, their fresh ground beef lists 5-8 different countries their beef is from. That sort of freaks me out. But the frozen patties are usually the same (made from beef trimmings from different countries)

I would like to balance quality with cost, if that isn't a pipe dream.

Thanks for the advice....and advice for my last question. You were all so helpful!


advice on a "partial" caterer

Great suggestions everyone - I really appreciate the feedback!


advice on a "partial" caterer

ha ha! You're funny! I'm happy to pay a good person to help me out. What's your food/cooking background? You can email me your resume at Thank you!