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serendipity3's Profile

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Oven-Roasted Tomatoes

really nice

Feb 21, 2013
serendipity3 in Recipes

The unexpected...smack in the face find.

Ugh, that sucks. I'm sorry you had to deal with that when traveling.

Oct 27, 2010
serendipity3 in General Topics

The unexpected...smack in the face find.

I didn't go to Provencal, Monica did. I was up north for most of my trip to France. I didn't say that the food was bad, it was the restaurants that were rather disappointing. I wanted to be blown away and it was just 'eh'. Food in Spain and Italy was overall better.

The markets and shops were great though.

Oct 25, 2010
serendipity3 in General Topics

The unexpected...smack in the face find.

I was mostly in the north and west of France, I wasn't able to make it very far south.
I don't know if I was totally reading the Parisians wrong, but it SEEMED like they were being polite with me and was generally treated very well. I was surprised since my French is non-existent, but people were really great about helping me find my way around. I guess I just tried to ask people who didn't look like they were really busy. The folks in the country were straight up Midwestern friendly.

Oct 25, 2010
serendipity3 in General Topics

"Different, but not strange" - what's on your breakfast plate?

When I was little, my grandpa's favorite breakfast was pancakes with chokecherry syrup and kipper snacks. I usually just stuck with the pancakes and chokecherry syrup (my grandma does both from scratch, mmmmmmm) but one day I was feeling adventurous and Grandpa gave me some. I was surprised how tasty they were.

I'm not sure where he got the taste for them. He was German American who lived his whole life in North Dakota (not known for it's fish products), aside from a few years in the Army.

Oct 23, 2010
serendipity3 in General Topics

If you live in Europe, what American products do you crave? [Moved from International board]

Hill Food, that's funny! I hope you showed your German exchange students a good time. The best parties I ever attended were cheap beer fueled. It's gross, but Natty Ice and Milwaukee's Best (The Beast) still hold a piece of my heart.

Oct 23, 2010
serendipity3 in General Topics

If you live in Europe, what American products do you crave? [Moved from International board]

Hot Sauce (number one missed item)
Maple Syrup
Black Beans (actually, most Mexican items)
Wild Rice (I'm from the upper Midwest, so it was a nice taste of home when I received it in a care package)
BEER! Don't let anyone in Europe say that the US only makes horrible beer. Yeah, Anheiser-Busch/Coors/macro-brews are awful, but some of the best beers in the world are made here too. Since you're in Cali, there's a lot of really good beer being made in state.

I think things have really changed in the US though as far as food quality goes. I live near Seattle now and the fruit and vegetables in the farmers markets are just as good, if not better than in Europe. If you want to pay for it, you can get some incredible cheese and dairy products that are local too.

Oct 23, 2010
serendipity3 in General Topics

The unexpected...smack in the face find.

I'm a vegetarian at home (in the US) but when I travel, I'll try everything. France was hard on my stomach. WAY too much animal protein. My favorite meals were bits of things that I picked up at the markets and shops and picnic-ed in parks.

So, the food wasn't as good as I had hoped, but by and large, the locals were really, really nice. I'll take kindness over good food any day.

If you want both amazing food and people? Go to Thailand.

Oct 23, 2010
serendipity3 in General Topics

Strange Pairings that Taste Uncommonly Good

WW is pretty good actually. You can eat whatever you want, just watch portion sizes. It's helped my mom a lot.

Oct 20, 2010
serendipity3 in General Topics

The unexpected...smack in the face find.

Just about everything that I ate in France in a restaurant, unfortunately. :( Although the portion sizes were a nice change!

What was weird is that I saw all these amazing veggies in markets, but why aren't they used more in restaurants?

Oct 20, 2010
serendipity3 in General Topics

Should New York City Take Soda Away from Poor People?

Nobody is saying that welfare recipients shouldn't drink soda, just that the government shouldn't pay for it. Why do people have a problem with that?

However, I agree, where's the line? All beverages with sugar added? Would diet soda be eligible to purchase with assistance then? Would non-dairy milk (soy/almond/rice) with sugar added be not eligible?

Oct 20, 2010
serendipity3 in Features

CBS Sunday Morning feature on school lunches in France

I really do hope something can happen on a countrywide level to improve school lunches, but I doubt it'll ever be like French school lunches.

I went to Jr/Senior high school in North Dakota in the 90s. The food was made at the school and wasn't TOO bad. The biggest problem was the veggies that were offered, really limp and/or flavorless. Still what could they do? Locally grown veggies aren't available during almost all of the school year, since it's pretty cold and the growing season is just over 100 days. They HAD to ship everything from California, Florida, or Mexico. I suspect it's the same for most of the northern states.

Kid friendly vegetable recipes for a PICKY eater?

If he likes french fries, maybe cut veggies (sweet potatoes, parsnips, turnips, carrots, peppers) into strips and roast them? Would the shape make the veggie more familiar to him and more likely to eat?

One of my favorites is broiling green beans tossed with olive oil for 5 minutes or so (they'll start developing charred bits) and dress with balsamic vinegar and salt. If the vinegar would put him off, I'm sure there's loads of creamier sauces that you could dip the beans in and it would taste good.

Sep 26, 2010
serendipity3 in Home Cooking

Food on a Stick Challenge...I want to crush my competition :)

Thanks for all the great ideas! I'm going to have a tough time deciding between doing something savory or something sweet. However, I'm going to try to work in edible sticks. I like that idea a lot.

Oh, and for those who asked, dairy and eggs are ok and why I asked for something that can be served cold or room temperature, is because while I have easy access to a refrigerator/freezer, I don't have access to stoves/ovens and since I take the bus to work, it would be tough to haul a crockpot/skillet with me.

I'm a little worried about my judges, as they're kinda fast food junkies. Still, I know who will be my main competition, and he mentioned that he's most likely doing kebabs (specifically what, I dunno). He doesn't scare me though. RAWR!

Mar 16, 2009
serendipity3 in Home Cooking

Food on a Stick Challenge...I want to crush my competition :)

My office recently started a monthly, informal food competition. I won last month's salsa cook-off with a pretty good roasted tomato salsa. This month's theme is 'food on a stick' and I'm completely stumped. Does anyone have ideas?

The parameters that I need to work in:

Works well on a stick (duh)
Vegetarian
Can be served cold or room temperature....I don't have any way of heating up my dish.

I was thinking about finding some popsicle molds and whipping up some coconut milk/fruit frozen bars. Still, I would like to have more options, like an elegant, tasty appetizer or something like that.

Can anyone help me brainstorm?

Mar 15, 2009
serendipity3 in Home Cooking