junescook's Profile

Title Last Reply

whole roasted chicken left out cooling 4 hrs

No problem.

Dec 24, 2014
junescook in General Topics

Prime Rib and baked potatoes question

Potatoes "bake" beautifully in the microwave and I usually prefer to do them that way and then finish them in the hot oven to crispen their skins. That way they stay nice and fluffy and don't get dried out. Assuming you're going to finish your roast with a final oven sear (as I am after slow smoking tomorrow), you could pop them in along side that for those few minutes.

Dec 24, 2014
junescook in Home Cooking

Christmas Dinner: in charge of turkey and ham and mashed potato -- but traveling 5 hours to get there, arriving just 2 hours before scheduled dinner time

I had something of a similar problem last Christmas when I wanted to smoke a turkey for Christmas and I really didn't know how long it would take. So I decided to smoke it the day before. I smoke (and cook in general) by temperature rather than by time. As soon as it had reached 165 or whatever it was supposed to be at I removed it from the smoker and let it cool down and then got it into the fridge. The next afternoon I cut the breast meat off the breast as I would to carve, and removed and cut up the wings and legs. I boned out the thighs. Then I placed these large pieces in flat roasting pans with stock underneath to provide moisture and heated them quickly in a fairly hot oven (maybe 375?). Doing it this way let them heat up, and crispen the skin (skin does not get crispy in a smoker) but not dry out. Then I sliced the breast and thighs and arranged everything on platters. I think it came out great and tending a smoker all day was one thing I didn't have to worry about.

Btw, this year my plan is to slow smoke a prime rib (on Christmas) and then finish it with a sear in a 475 oven. Any suggestion for sides to go with that would be appreciated.

Dec 16, 2014
junescook in Home Cooking

Other Good Pizza In New Haven

I grew up in New Haven so my tastes are pretty deeply ingrained, and our pickings pretty slim in Lithfld Cnty. But I was talking with a guy who lives in Oxford but who works in Stratford. On nights when he says they crave New Haven style apizza, he goes the long way home through Hamden and stops to get his pies at Sergio's across from Aunt Chilada's on Rt-10. Have any CHers ever been there and would it be worth a trip out of the way if we were over past Waterbury say?

Weird, unique, amazing eats in CT...

Weird, unique, amazing eats in CT...

The Landing Zone Grill in Harwinton has a dive atmosphere with a unique menu of freshly prepared food. Many Cajun foods (gator, frog legs), but then elk, bison and some fabulous mussel and clam dishes.


Best martini olives?

I love my double-stuffed colossal olives I use in my gin martinis. They're stuffed with garlic and jalapeno peppers and add just a nice balance of flavor and heat to the drink.

Nov 15, 2014
junescook in Spirits

What method do you use to drain cooked and crumbled ground meat?

If I'm using pretty lean meat, I push it to one side, tilt to the other, and soak up the grease with a paper towel. That way I don't run any grease down the drain (DW gets pissed when I pour it down the disposal) and don't have a can of grease to figure out what to do with.

looking for Minor's chicken base in Hartford, Ct area

I got Minor's at BJ's club in Waterbury today. Not sure if they had it in its regular spot in the soup aisle because it was in a display of holiday ingredients along the center aisle. But as usual they had both beef and chicken.

Hot fudge sundae, what flavor ice cream?

Black raspberry and heathbar crunch. Contrasts.

Oct 22, 2014
junescook in General Topics

lunch in morningside heights

Thanks, looks perfect.

Oct 16, 2014
junescook in Manhattan

lunch in morningside heights

I know that there are some posts on this but they are fairly old. We'll be staying at the International House (122nd @ W Side Hwy) near Columbia, and arriving around noon. So we'll be looking to find a nice sit-down lunch without having to walk too far from there (age + arthritis). Ethnic is nice though not Italian since we're going out for Italian in the evening. Thanks for any assistance anyone can provide.

Oct 16, 2014
junescook in Manhattan

"Farmland" highlights contrasts between large/small farms.

Academy award winner James Moll produced and directed a documentary about American farms that was released this year. 90% of food in America is produced by family farms. He follows several from a local CSA to a large scale poultry operation to a big grain farm. The film was just released to be viewed online and can be watched on your computer via Hulu. His subjects run organic and non-o organizations and so the film discusses gmos as well as animal cruelty. It's very well done.


Oct 15, 2014
junescook in Food Media & News

GMOs are old tech. Now Synthetically Modified Food is the New Frontier

It seems that scientists have been working to create food products through natural processes via yeast fermentation and coming up with vanillin, saffron and even dairy products (would you believe Muufri?)


Oct 15, 2014
junescook in Food Media & News

Do Eggs Need to Be Refrigerated?

In Europe, all chickens are required to be injected with antibiotics to prevent salmonella but not here in the US. Thus cold storage is mandated:


Oct 14, 2014
junescook in Features

Chris Cosentino Deeply Regrets Television Appearances

I have always liked Chris Cosentino. I do feel bad for him. I hope he does better in the future. Frankly I saw that show a couple of times and thought it was an embarrassment for everybody involved.

Affordable Bershires Dinner Recs to Satisfy a Somewhat Jaded Brooklyn Family plus other Recs for Food Stops in the Berkshires?

While I know the OP was originally looking for a dinner place, I just wanted to mention that we had a really nice lunch this past Wednesday at Alta on Church St. in Lenox. It was a chilly, rainy day, and my BinL and I both had the stew of the day, a big bowl of lamb stew in a tagine style broth with squash and fingerling potatoes. DW had a salmon quesadilla and her sister, an omelet. Everyone was very happy with the food. The service was gracious and the prices are reasonable. (I'd go back just to try another stew.)


Rudest grocery checker remark

I have. They're just hard boiled eggs the size of big olives. I've used them for deviled eggs around the holidays. I often thought that it would be fun to put them in a bowl with grape tomatoes and big green and black olives. I believe I've got a can in the cabinet. They're very inexpensive at the Asian supermarket.

Call me an old fashion prude, but I don't think this is appropriate. "Mom Bakes Vagina Cookies For 2nd Graders"

And if one of the fathers had brought in anatomically correct male genitalia to complement them, then these kids' knowledge would have shot right through the old common core.

CT: Let's Thai one on--share your Thai favorites!

Up here in our area we have not had any Thai restaurants in the area until very recently, and while Samui Thai in Southbury is not, I think, as authentic as you can find in more Southern and Central areas of the state, it has become one of our favorite lunch places. For $10-12 you get a choice of an appetizer, a choice of soup (tom-yum or coconut, both of which are delicious), an entrée, and a bit of fruit to finish. Plus they have the best hot tea I have ever had. The place and the food is pretty (and very tasty) -- I'll try to get pictures.


What Is America's Worst Restaurant Chain?

Oh Man, now I've got a craving for a bucket of KFC dark with mashed + gravy and cole slaw.

Sep 11, 2014
junescook in Features

5th Annual CT Cheese & Wine Festival: A Perfect Fall Feast at Hopkins Vineyard

Joan, Are the food and wine samplings included in the price of admission, or like Haight, do you charge for each of those separately?

Water spots on my grill please help

For me it's the Big Fat Greek Wedding solution. After I'm done cooking outside, I grab that big spray bottle of Windex I keep next to my glass top range and carry it out to my cooking area and spray it on and wipe down whatever is exposed: grill, smoker cabinet, steel work table whatever. The grills get whatever cleaning is appropriate (a couple of times a year I throw the weber grates into the oven when I do the cleaning cycle). Then, when the smokers are all cleaned up I line them with aluminum foil so they're ready to go with not too much prepping for their next use. I also have covers for all of them so that avoids having to wipe anything down when I need to use it.

Do you grill with aluminum foil (and no, it's not what you're thinking of)

I got these plates called Grill Grates that sit on top of the regular grates of my weber and make it a lot easier to grill meat, fish and veggies. It gets quite hot, doesn't flare up, and stuff releases easily, especially because the spatula tines go below the ridges of the grate.


Woodbury, CT's Hotel Hell

Curtis House was a destination spot for older folks well before Heritage Village was built, and I think probably the celebration spot for many of the area people since back then as well when there were fewer choices available (Philip's Diner, Charcoal Chef and a coffee shop of various names).

CT Magazine reported on the Ramsay visit:


Texas Roadhouse

We had one open up here in Waterbury, CT a few weeks ago. They are very busy. We went for a Saturday lunch at maybe 12:30 and had a 20-minute wait (they're great big places so when you put our name in they give you a buzzer thing). There are peanuts everywhere to munch on. Now I had checked out their web site ahead of time and they had emailed me a coupon for a free appetizer.

Country music is being played loudly all the time.

The servers we had were very nice and very quick. There was a bucket of peanuts on the table. Then came a basket of hot rolls with a sweet glaze on them. We ordered iced tea and potato skins skins and they came quickly. There were 8 large pieces so we only ate half of those. With any entrée you get two sides. I got an 8-oz sirloin with a Caesar salad and mashed potato. DW had a beef shish kabob, a bowl of chili and a house salad. My steak was cooked perfectly and was excellent. The mashed potatoes had pieces of skins in them and were drop-dead delicious. I would go back for them. The Caesar salad was blah, the house salad was better. Wife liked her food and we brought some leftovers home.

Final tally: This is a very casual place that happens to serve good meat cheap. Our check including our drinks and tax but not tip came to about $31.


Sep 02, 2014
junescook in Chains

Woodbury, CT's Hotel Hell

Just a reminder that one of CT's oldest inns, Woodbury's Curtis House, will be the subject of Gordon Ramsay's "Hotel Hell" episode which will be aired this coming Monday night on Fox at 9 pm. The inn has been operated by the Hardisty family for several generations, but now siblings Chris and TJ just can't seem to get along much less work together and the place shows it. I think even Ramsay may have been embarrassed by the language used by these small town folks.

Following Ramsay's visit they followed his menu for a couple of months, apparently according to a contract, and then added other old things back. Some of the new menu items are very good, but over all, the food is fairly overpriced compared with better restaurants in the neighborhood.

The Clam Castle?

We've really gotten to like their place in New Haven, even compared to our old standby Lenny's. It's pretty, it's comfortable, you always have a great view, they have those great lunch combos cheap (can't beat fried oysters and whole bellies on one plate for around $15), and everything we've had there has been good.


Corn on the cob TOO sweet!

Dent corn v. sweet corn.

Aug 24, 2014
junescook in General Topics

Oakhurst Diner, Millerton

Thanks, JayJay. Both DW and her sister have advised me that Beacon is way too far so I'll be checking out your recommendations.