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MariaJ.'s Profile

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Want to make my own lime cordial (Rose's Lime Juice)

Thanks, David-- I did try it some years ago (detailed above), via some online British food site. I was shocked to find it disappointing! Too "fresh" tasting, which is something I never imagined I'd say-- ha! Making my own, using cane sugar as described above, was the ticket for me. All depends on how you like your Gimlets, of course-- but the UK Rose's didn't have that distinctive "cooked" quality, and was missing the slightly viscous quality which HFCS probably adds to the US version. Mine reminds me of "real" Rose's, but better.

Jun 18, 2014
MariaJ. in Home Cooking

Rice cooker brown rice

Depends on what you think is the proper ratio with WHITE rice, I guess. I've always found that white rice requires less than brown...but I prefer brown, so rarely have cooked white in the last 20 years. There's another thread here in which people recommend 1:1, 1:1.2 1:1.5 and 1:2 for white rice, but that's also for all kinds of different varieties: CA long grain, Japanese, basmati, etc. etc.!

Sep 05, 2012
MariaJ. in Home Cooking

Rice cooker brown rice

Dax, you don't mention the proportions of rice to water which you're using, and that's the key. I'm looking around tonight to see if anyone else fell for the bizarre recipe on the back of a Nishiki "premium brown rice" bag, which says to use 3 cups water to 1 cup rice, if using an electric rice cooker.

I've NEVER used that much water to rice in about 30 years of brown rice cooking, including 15 in the rice cooker, but there it was in print, and I thought there might be something special about this particular rice.

HA! I couldn't bring myself to put quite 3:1, so to my 1.5 c rice, added 4 cups water, rather than their recommended 4.5 cups. And what happened? Horrible, soggy rice! I'm going to make a vegetarian loaf out of it with some mushrooms, cheese and eggs, I think.

Anyway, if you've been doing that, stop. As it's now 8 months after your post, you probably have. But here's what I like: about 2.25 c water to to a cup of rice. I also use a bit of butter, to combat foaming.

Sep 04, 2012
MariaJ. in Home Cooking
1

Brown Rice Cooking Time

I've got a Zojirishi, too, and use it almost exclusively for brown rice. The issue with that extra long time is that it SOAKS the rice first. Try using the "Quick Cooking" setting-- that gets going faster, although it still takes a bit longer than the stove method. Then again, it also neither boils over nor burns-- both worthy tradeoffs for a little extra cooking time!

By the way-- I find that brown rice can foam like mad sometimes, and it's really hard to clean out of that mysteriously-designed lid. If I put a knob of butter or a bit of oil in with the rice, though, the foaming seems to be quelled.

Sep 04, 2012
MariaJ. in Home Cooking

ISO: Luxardo Amaro Abano

I was just drinking some tonight, and thought I'd look around to see what others were doing with it. I'm in Minneapolis-St. Paul, and it's available here (Surdyk's-- probably the biggest liquor retailer in the metro, or at least the one with the biggest liqueur/aperitif/digestivo/ etc etc selection). Why not jump on the high-speed rail from Chicago and buy a bottle? HA HA! Alas-- how I wish we'd put that in before Wisconsin's hopefully temporary governor slapped it down... but I digress. When you do find a bottle, try it on the rocks with a hefty squeeze of fresh lemon. Delicious. I didn't care for it when I first bought the bottle a couple of years ago, but now am really enjoying it.

Apr 21, 2012
MariaJ. in Chicago Area

Want to make my own lime cordial (Rose's Lime Juice)

Wow-- totally different tactic. I'm going to go out and get both those powders this week-- did you check the so-ops, btw? I'll be interested to try them side by side. One thing that's surprised me about my concentrated-juice cordials is how little all that boiling seems to have changed the flavors. Give it a shot sometime and see what you think. The intensity may impress you.

Re the Canadian Rose's: I got my UK version (which might be the one the Canadians get) at one of the Brit food online shops. Not expensive, even for a big bottle.

Aug 14, 2011
MariaJ. in Home Cooking

Want to make my own lime cordial (Rose's Lime Juice)

Anne, I'm just seeing your quest in August of '11-- wondering if you found true satisfaction with your Canadian Rose's. I'll admit that, as a HFCS avoider myself, I tried the same switch, but to the UK van, also cane sugar-- and I wasn't thrilled with it, as it tasted too thin and "fresh." I would never have thought "Fresh" would be anything but a plus, but I realized that part of what I love in Rose's is the "cooked" flavor. To me, lime juice and simple syrup it perfectly fine in a drink, just not what I want in a Gimlet!

After some experimentation (starting with a recipe from a blogger whose name I'll have to look up), I've come up with what I think is a really good alternative.

Zest, and then squeeze, a LOT of limes-- may as well make 16 oz of juice, but could do 8 oz if you're suspicious, and fear wasting the effort.

You don't really need all the zest from all the limes, but as you'll have a lot of them, do as many as you can stand (wash them well first). Reserve zest.

Now boil the lime juice down, reducing it by half. I don't know if it's better to do it fast or slow, but keep an eye on it, and have a heatproof measuring cup at hand. When it looks close to half its former volume, pour into the cup and check. Return to the boil if necessary. I'd say reducing it too much is better than not enough, btw.

Now take the 1/2 or previous volume hot lime juice, and add an equal amount of cane sugar, by volume. That is, if it's 8 fl oz of juice, add 8 fl oz sugar. Stir to dissolve. Add the zest, and allow to steep for 15 minutes or so, then strain.

You might do as I did (and as Rose's does!): add an eensy weeny drop of BLUE FOOD COLORING, and mix well! Suddenly it'll be a pale green, rather than a natural, but sad-looking, yellow. I realize some may find that horrifying, but it's much prettier in the glass.

This makes a wonderfully intense, tart lime cordial. I didn't use any citric acid etc., and have had this batch in the fridge for a couple of weeks with no sign of deterioration or mold. The blogger said it would keep indefinitely, and his was equal parts of fresh lime and sugar, just brought to the boil-- so much higher water content (also WAY sweeter). Tonight I poured 1.5 oz gin and 1 oz lime cordial over ice, and topped w soda water in a DOF-- absolutely fantastic!

I've made a grapefruit cordial the same way. Looks wonderful (red grapefruit), but the color vanishes in a cocktail. It tasted great, too, by itself-- but used as a sort of gimlet, it's just not tart enough. I've made a couple of great drinks with it, though: a take on the Paloma (tequila, grapefruit cordial, fresh lime and soda), and something I called the GIMLETTE:

2 oz white rum, 1 oz grapefruit cordial, 1/2 oz lemon juice, shaken and served up. Delish!

By the way-- I'm in Minneapolis, too.

Aug 11, 2011
MariaJ. in Home Cooking

Turning a non-stick frying pan into a regular frying pan?

$12??? I've just done a quick scan of eBay, and having seen nothing approaching that incredible price, shall head to M/TJM at dawn!

Meanwhile, my SafePan (11.2") arrived promptly from an eBay seller, and it's clearly a fantastic pan. Unfortunately, I should've stuck with a 10" or less-- this is just that much too big for comfort when making tortilla espanola, as I discovered tonight-- not terrible, but a bit awkward. I know a smaller pan will make it much easier to deal with the turning. Meanwhile, I'll work on my technique with the big one. Bring on the potatoes and olive oil. Ha ha!

And btw-- I have a feeling SafePan is no longer in production. Extinct on Amazon, and that's a bad sign. If anyone's interested in this great pan (ca. $36 incl postage), there were a couple more for sale on eBay-- brand new. I would buy the smaller one, if it were available.

Jul 08, 2011
MariaJ. in Cookware

Turning a non-stick frying pan into a regular frying pan?

I realize I'm replying to a 4 yr old comment, but here goes:
I got a number of All-Clad pans 16 years ago-- most plain stainless, but the big, wonderful 6qt saute pan in non-stick. I was already starting to feel squeamish about the non-stick thing, due to the dangers to birds. I say, if it kills birds, why would I want to expose myself, my husband, my dogs and anyone else to it? Anyhow, I used that pan almost daily for a couple of years, being careful not to get it too hot, but MAN, is that hard! Also, only hand-washing. Eventually, the center got darker, and there were traces of flaking, and I decided I'd get the coating ground off. I looked in vain for someone to do that-- never thought of a machine shop, as someone recommends above. Finally I contacted All-Clad, thinking they might know a company who'd be able to remove the coating. The CS lady had no info on such a solution, and wanted my reasons. She said, "If you're dissatisfied with the pan, send it back, and we'll replace it with a plain stainless one." I thought she'd misunderstood me-- I said the pan was perfectly usable, and I loved it, but just wasn't comfy with the coating. She repeated the offer... and I boxed it up, sent it away (I think it cost ca. $12 via USPS). Soon, a brand-spanking-new All-Clad 6 qt pan, stainless, arrived-- free of charge!

It's still my go-to pan, and gets almost daily use. It's unchanged after its 13 or so years on my stove. Needless to say, I'm an All-Clad evangelist!

That all said, I'm on Chowhound today in search of info on a non-Teflon (etc.) non-stick pan for making tortilla española. I can do it in an All-Clad SS pan, but know how much easier it would be in a (safe!) non-stick one. I still don't want to poison any of us with fumes!

Jul 05, 2011
MariaJ. in Cookware

Costco Food Finds - 1st QTR 2011 - Old

It's sub-zero in Minnesota again, and if I had a bunch of unwanted beer, I'd make this fantastic Wassail recipe. I tried it once, in a fairly slapdash manner (didn't have time to do the apple baking bit, so just threw the sugar and chunked apples into the pot and simmered), and everybody loved it.
http://www.accidentalhedonist.com/ind...

Feb 08, 2011
MariaJ. in Chains

Costo membership - worth it? must-tries etc.

Agreed! We're a 2 person vegetarian family, and find Costco membership totally worthwhile. Fantastic bargains on interesting cheese-- and that was the primary reason I joined (besides their great treatment of employees). I don't get much produce there, as I prefer shopping at Minneapolis-St. Paul co-ops. However, co-ops don't sell tires-- that's a non-food item that can make a year's membership pay for itself.

Oct 25, 2010
MariaJ. in Chains

Best Food Finds at Costco Part 2 6/10

I also love the Costco "artisan" breads. The multi-grain is great, as is the roasted garlic (which seems to come and go).

If you like croutons in a salad, do this: allow a loaf of the rosemary olive oil bread to sit around for a few days, then cut it into 1/2" cubes, and toast at 350º or so until just browned. It can take a surprisingly long time, but it worth it to watch carefully-- ultimately you'll get a perfectly dry, super-crunchy, toasty little nugget of perfection! No need to use any oil or salt (and I love both!). They hold up wonderfully in a salad. When I see what people will spend on some of those airy, crumbly commercial croutons, it boggles my mind. These are CHEAP, and GREAT!

Oct 25, 2010
MariaJ. in Chains

Best Food Finds at Costco Part 2 6/10

We're a two-person, vegetarian (L/O) household, but still get a lot out of our membership. I joined Costco originally because of CHEESE-- and that's still one of my main buys. Manchego, real Parm at the best price in town, that wonderful goat Gouda that comes and goes, etc. etc.! It seems Gruyere appears seasonally (fall/winter), and I generally stock up on that, as it keeps perfectly at the back of the cheese drawer-- ditto Emmenthaler. For fondue parties, I've sometimes use Jarlsberg as the base, and supplement w. the pricier Gruyere/Emmenthaler.

Oct 25, 2010
MariaJ. in Chains

Kirkland Cheese Pizza - new product!

Thanks for this-- I do the same thing with the boxes!

Oct 25, 2010
MariaJ. in Chains

Recipes that call for peanut powder/ recipe for chipotle peanut pesto aioli?

TDQ, I finally took a crack at the chipotle peanut pesto álà Highland/Longfellow/Edina Grill, and for a first attempt, find it quite tasty. I'll have to go get some at one of the restaurants this week and see how close I am, but I used about 2T chipotle en adobo, a bit under 1/2 cup of crunchy (unsweetened) PB, a big clove of garlic, probably 1/2 c Hellman's, 1t dried oregano, 1/2 t salt, juice of half a good-sized lime.

I found it to be way too dense, so added boiling water bit by bit until I felt it was loosened up enough. Looks pretty much as I recall it at the grills, and tasted great on oven-fried sweet potatoes. I'll be interested to see how it is tomorrow.

I actually had a chat with the very lovely wife of the owner, and told her I was going to try to replicate that stuff. She scoffed (nicely), and said it had an enormously long list of ingredients, and I would NEVER be able to figure out what was in it! I say I've come up with something pretty close, and "right" or not, it's mighty tasty.

Oct 05, 2010
MariaJ. in Home Cooking

Gooseberries

I just came on this topic today-- I've been thinking about gooseberries, after someone I met at the dogpark talked about his parents' little berry business (they supply some gooseberries, but mainly raspberries and strawberries, to the St. Paul Farmers' Market-- St. Paul, MINNESOTA).

Then today at the same park (where my dogs and I have been feasting on wild raspberries, both black and golden), I saw what I thought were gooseberries! Kind of prickly surface on the skins, which seemed suspicious in something you'd eat, but maybe they weren't ripe.

Are you in Minnesota? Your mention of relentless prairie winds and brutal winters implies that you're around here.

Jul 02, 2010
MariaJ. in Gardening

Angostura Bitters - Where are they?

Peychaud's is quite intensely licorice/anise flavored. If you wouldn't slip ouzo or pastis into your Manhattan, you'll want to skip the Peychaud'sl Save it for your Sazerac.

Mar 17, 2010
MariaJ. in Spirits

Angostura Bitters - Where are they?

If you have access to a source for Fee's bitters line, try the Aztec chocolate bitters. They're a wee bit spicy like Angostura, but with the chocolatey addition. I love them in a Manhattan!

Of course, Fee's makes an "old fashioned" bitters, too-- quite like the Angostura. I haven't had their barrel-aged, or whatever the premium one is called, but it's reputed to be excellent.

Mar 17, 2010
MariaJ. in Spirits

Recipes that call for peanut powder/ recipe for chipotle peanut pesto aioli?

I've just been looking around for that very recipe, for a couple of Dutch friends who were visiting, and LOVED it (as do I-- that's why I took them to Longfellow Grill). I just had a note back from the executive chef, saying they don't give out recipes, and suggesting I try Epicurious for something similar.

However, I think I'm going to take a crack at it myself. My guess is that I'll get pretty close by pureeing some chipotles en adobo with garlic, mixing in some peanut butter, and blending it all with mayo.

Mar 08, 2010
MariaJ. in Home Cooking

Anyone else a Fortnum and Mason Junkie?

I just got my order from englishteastore.com, and am enjoying their Monk's Blend, a black tea with vanilla and grenadine-- not my usual style, which tends to a strong workingman's cuppa (lately, Barry's from Ireland). I'm trying several of their English Brkfasts, too.

They have a green Earl Grey: http://www.englishteastore.com/1mt-eg...

I haven't had it, but suggest it's worth a try based on what I'm drinking now, the excellent service, and decent price.

Feb 12, 2010
MariaJ. in General Topics

What to do with a whole bunch of limes

MAI-TAI
2 oz Appleton VX rum
1 oz lime juice (that's an entire average lime)
1/2 oz orange curaçao
3/4 oz orgeat (almond syrup-- I like Routin 1883)

Shake like mad with several ice cubes, pour it all into a rocks glass. Traditional garnish is a sprig of mint, but my husband likes a maraschino cherry-- his favorite sinister garnish, in his favorite sunny cocktail!

The original recipe(s) uses less orgeat, and some rock candy/simple syrup, but I love the almondy goodness of all orgeat, and it's one less ingredient.

Feb 17, 2009
MariaJ. in Home Cooking

10 Ways to Save at the Grocery Store

Sorry-- I don't care to accept cranberry juice as a substitute for pomegranate juice! Of course, I'm not downing pomegranate juice by the liter, but when I've had it, I've found the flavor to be something quite a bit more delicious than cranberry juice. I could actually see drinking Cosmopolitans if they were made with pomegranate juice...

But for those who feel compelled to drink it for its (admittedly) faddish health benefits, a better way to save a bit of lucre would be to buy a concentrate-- a POMEGRANATE concentrate. And for that matter, the pomegranate juice I sometimes get at Costco (Ca $6 for half a gallon) is so intense that my husband cuts it with water, at least 50/50. In that sense, the bottle is suddenly half price!

Feb 17, 2009
MariaJ. in Features

ISO Romanesco broccoli recipe

Greetings from the future! I just used your recipe tonight-- but wanted to report that I substituted olive oil for the butter, and (dried!) oregano for the marjoram, and it was delectable. This romanesco is an excellent vegetable-- can't believe I'd never even heard of it before finding it at a Minneapolis co-op a couple of days ago.

Feb 16, 2009
MariaJ. in Home Cooking

Yellow Bicycle

May have to make a Green Bicycle tonight... don't have the yellow Chartreuse, but this looks sublime.

Feb 16, 2009
MariaJ. in Recipes

MSP Co-Ops take over the world: shock and awe at the new Seward Co-Op

On demand PB in MSP?!?!?! AT LAST!!!

Jan 24, 2009
MariaJ. in Minneapolis-St. Paul