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Embarrassing question about Le creuset Dutch Oven:

Almost definitely not. Washing is a precaution against some contamination during storage. Enjoy the roast!

Jan 22, 2012
RichardM in Cookware

What kind of implements is Lidia using?

If you don't have Tivo or other HD based DVD recorder then maybe look for old shows online since you can usually pause them.

Good luck.

Jan 22, 2012
RichardM in Cookware

What kind of implements is Lidia using?

Well, I didn't mean to suggest that the credits are like a catalog page. Sometimes a vendor (store,etc) is mentioned especially when several items have come from there.

Jan 21, 2012
RichardM in Cookware

What kind of implements is Lidia using?

The 'rocket science' comment was made in jest. Why do YOU assume I was being rude. Obviously the OP 'got it'.

To the OP - These cooking shows get major funding thru product placement. Their primary means of identifying themselves is in the credits. Just an FYI.

Jan 20, 2012
RichardM in Cookware

What kind of implements is Lidia using?

Tape the show and look at the credits. Find the websites and buy. It's not rocket science.

Jan 20, 2012
RichardM in Cookware

Le Creuset Newbie Questions

Try not to get too hung up on colors. The only color that has always been available is flame which was the original color back in the '60s. Of course, you will pay a premium for that color. If you want to save money look for discontinued colors at places like TJMaxx. Or custom (WS only) colors which didn't sell well. Also, some pieces don't come in all available colors (even flame).

Jan 14, 2012
RichardM in Cookware

Best popcorn popper uses least oil or butter?

I've owned the Stir-Crazy, a microwavable bowl gizmo and a Presto Poplite (air popper). The air popper gives the best results with minimal cleanup. As mentioned you can add butter or other fat as desired. One thing I learned is that amount of unpopped kernels blowing out the front is related to how much popcorn you put in. Put in the full amount and it's minimal. Also leaving the cap off of the top until the popping begins directs the airflow up and more kernels fall back in.

Jan 11, 2012
RichardM in Cookware

Advice on coffee grinder...

Are you aware that the Kitchenaid can be adjusted. The directions are in the manual under calibration. Basic steps are -

- Move large knob to finest setting
- Remove center screw with allen wrench and remove knob
- With grinder running, turn the inner plastic knob until you just hear the burrs touching.
- Reinstall the knob in the same location.
- Grinder will now produce a finer grind for espresso.

If you are concerned about wear, don't move to the finest setting until beans are being ground. And as they are nearing finishing, rotate the knob back to a coarser setting.

Dec 29, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

rice cooker recommendations?

In spite of your objections, I would recommend the Zojirushi UMAMI Micom Rice Cooker (NS-YAC10 for 5 cup or -18 for 10cup). Often on sale at markets like Marukai here in SoCal. You can just dump in the rinsed rice and water and hit the Rice button and everything happens automatically. The UMAMI mode makes mouth watering rice. Cooking times are longer than say a Tiger (my last brand). Closer to an hour vs. 30 minutes but the wait is worth it. I've never kept the rice for more than 24 hours but I wouldn't be surprised if it tasted fine after two days.

Dec 17, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

Yet another roasting pan question: reco for high end SS pan that won't warp

The problem is called spring back and is a major issue when forming sheet metal.

http://conference.iproms.org/sites/co...

Nov 15, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

Yet another roasting pan question: reco for high end SS pan that won't warp

That is the point I was trying to make. Roasting pans with a slight elevation in the center (manufacturing artifact?) will cause liquids to run to the edges making deglazing harder. The thicker more expensive AC pans are made to be totally flat to aid in deglazing. Sorry I can't find where I read about that or I'd post a link.

Nov 15, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

Yet another roasting pan question: reco for high end SS pan that won't warp

I'd read that the best choice for deglazing is the large AC roaster. It is thicker than most and has a truly flat bottom. There are two similar models -- one at $199 and one at $249. Of course, I'm referring to the $249 one.

Nov 13, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

What size roasting pan would you recommend?

One way to save money on a SS roasting pan is to go to a kitchen supply store and get a full size tray for a steam table. About $25-30. They are 12 3/4 by 20 3/4 and about 4" deep and heavy gauge SS. The lips along the edges make lifting easy but not as easy as the handles on an AC. Of course you still need a rack but they're readily available.

Nov 03, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

Vintage Wagner Ware Magnalite Dutch Oven Roaster

Hi -

Without the composition of the alloy it's pretty hard to identify a range but in general the rate at which aluminum dissolves in the food substance increases the farther you are from pH 7.

These pans fell out of favor in the '60s with home cooks because of the 'aluminum' scare. Not unlike the concern over BPA and teflon today.

FYI - There were two sizes of the roaster, at least one frying pan and a set of matching sauce pans.

Oct 26, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

Vintage Wagner Ware Magnalite Dutch Oven Roaster

Not being anodized these roasters give off a little more aluminum that newer cookware. If that's not an issue for you then enjoy. However, I would probably draw the line at any food that is acidic or alkaline since aluminum is amphoteric.

The knobs are bakelite one of the earliest phenolic resin based plastics.

Oct 25, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

Best Burr Grinders

All new and everything that comes back for refurbishment gets the metal gear.

Oct 24, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

need some more Thai Town ideas- getting bored of the usual!

You might want to try Torung. It's just outside the border of Thai Town about 1 block east of the Hollywood freeway.

-----
Torung Restaurant
5657 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028

Oct 23, 2011
RichardM in Los Angeles Area

Iso restaurant for Thanksgiving "HELP"

The Langham Huntington (formerly Ritz-Carlton) in Pasadena is a good upscale choice. Check website or call for T-day menu and reservations.

Oct 17, 2011
RichardM in Los Angeles Area

Sharpening help

As mentioned the chances are you are not pressing hard enough yet or you have not taken enough strokes. Use a firm pressure but only what you can control the angle with. It takes a while to bring back a very dull blade. But once you get a sharper edge you can reduce the pressure.

Oct 17, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

Francis Francis x5 - Anyone know where to get one?

There is a refurbished X1 here - http://www.seattlecoffeegear.com/Fran...

eBay and CL are potential sources of used ones.

You might want to do a little research on machines in that price range / capability at a site like coffeegeek. Beware, parts can be a problem with older discontinued machines.

Oct 13, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

CI grill/griddle Pans

Join can also mean bring close together as in 'joined in marriage'. I think I mentioned reversing one to have a grill and a griddle. I have two burners (front to back) and the grates are level with one another so it works for me but probably not for you.

There is a raised edge on both sides to catch oil/grease but I supposed it could overflow under some conditions.

Sep 15, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

CI grill/griddle Pans

I recently started looking for a stove top grill. I wanted a reversible two burner size. After doing a little research I found that most people didn't like the inexpensive aluminum ones so I looked at cast iron. If you have looked you probably know that the Le Creuset double reversible is about $170. Sorry I didn't want to deal with the extra hassle of plain CI. Anyway in case anyone's interested I found a clearance sale on the LC reversible single burner model for $60. After trying one and liking it I bought a second. While there is a ridge where they join, it hasn't been a problem. A couple of trade-offs to that inconvenience are that you can have one griddle up and one grill up at the same time and since each one is lighter it's easier to clean.

I have no connection to the supplier. In case you're interested it is cutleryandmore.com

Sep 15, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

Need more fine grind for Cuisinart Burr Coffee Grinder Programmable 2-14c CBM-18C

Some low end coffee mills have calibration capability, such as Baratza Virtuoso. Maybe a little googling on the model might turn up some information.

Coffee grinders in that price range generally don't grind fine enough for espresso. Two that do (barely) are the Baratza's and the KA Pro Line. As you probably know the key to good espresso is a proper grinder. Newbies are often shocked when it is recommended to them that they spend MORE on a grinder the on a espresso machine.

There are a lot of dedicated sites for espresso and equipment. One of the most popular is coffeegeek but there are others.

Good luck.

Sep 13, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

Customizing counter & sink to minimize back problems?

No recommendation of height but my orthopedic surgeon once gave me a great tip for people with back strain while standing in front of sink or other work surface. Simply press one of your knees against the cabinet.

May 16, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

Kitchen sink recommendations?

Porcelain over cast iron has been around for a long time and is very durable. Over the years scrubbing with abrasives causes the glaze to be worn away and then it is more susceptible to stains and 'pot marks'. Since it is heavy the counter top must be adequate to support the weight. A standard Kohler (22x33) is about $230 plus installation so it is economical.

As mentioned inexpensive SS is noisy.. Better SS is quieter. Many people switched to SS to complement their new SS kitchen appliances. SS is cheaper to make and hence more profitable. There are many types of SS but most are too expensive and not necessary for kitchen sink construction.

Both will be easy to care for if not abused. I don't know much about the newer synthetics such as stone. Undermount is nice and reduces clutter and counter top cleaning.

In the end it comes down to personal tastes.

May 16, 2011
RichardM in Cookware

KitchenAid MIxer - Do I really need one?

If you plan to bake a lot then a stand mixer will get a lot more use than a food processor. If you visit a commercial bakery their equipment looks like a giant stand mixer not a giant food processor. There's a reason for that. Plus the various attachments (shredding, grinding, etc) make the stand mixer more versatile.

The one exception might be pie dough. The food processor blades do a better job of cutting the butter into the flour.

Off counter storage is an issue. Generally, a stand mixer is taller than a food processor so finding a shelf that it fits on is harder.

Nov 25, 2010
RichardM in Cookware

XXXL TURKEY

Go to http://www.diestelturkey.com/products...

They're are excellent fresh turkeys with Toms up to 36+.

But you've waited to long to order on the regular delivery this weekend. I believe they have a door-to-door service. You could start by calling the retailers in your area (see site list). Most order a few spares but in the more common sizes (Hens 16-24).

A couple of questions - do you have a big enough roasting pan?, is your oven big enough? and will you be able to lift it out when it's done. If you can't find a big enough one consider cooking two smaller birds. Bear in mind that the carcass of two smaller birds weighs more than one big one. So the amount of meat in one 30# is probably equal to two 16 or 18# birds.

Good luck and Happy Holidays!

Nov 19, 2010
RichardM in Los Angeles Area

Kitchenaid Pro or Kitchenaid Artisan Mixer?

If you want a model with a heavy duty motor and all steel geartrain consider the Commercial 5 qt. No fancy colors just rugged construction.

http://www.webstaurantstore.com/kitch...

Available here or goggle for it.

Oct 28, 2010
RichardM in Cookware

Kitchen Aid and bread dough woes!

If the head of the mixer is moving with the lock on then you have a problem with the mixer. Also, check to see if the dough hook or paddle is hitting the bottom of the bowl. There is a screw to adjust. See Owners Manual.

Do you follow the directions in the Recipe Book that came with your mixer?

That is, putting in about 3 1/2 cups (of 4 1/2-5) into the liquid and then slowly adding the remaining flour a little at a time. No more than 1/4 c per addition.

You have to adjust the final amount of flour to give you a dough which is not wet. When you are done, the inside the bowl will be clean and the dough will be clinging to the hook. You should be able to pull the dough off the hook without it sticking to the hook or your fingers. If it's still sticky (wet) you need to incorporate more flour. In time you will get the nack of it. Also the relative humidity can make a small difference.

It helps to practice with a simple white flour recipe since getting the dough just right is harder with whole wheat or rye flour. Although the bread is healthier. Also, use a good thermometer to make sure the water for the yeast is 110F and preheat the mixing bowl with some 110F water.

The good news is that even your mistakes are edible. :-)

Oct 25, 2010
RichardM in Cookware

soup containers?

The Ziploc products work well. The plastic containers with the pale blue tops (about 1 cup) are convenient but cost about $0.60-0.80/each. Use the plastic bags and you are down to less than $0.10 each.

As John E said, the trick with the bags is to only put about 1 cup in a 1 qt bag. Press all the air out before sealing. Lay the bag on the counter top and distribute the liquid evenly through out the bag. Freeze it in that position but once it's frozen you can store it in any position you want. When ready to use, run warm/hot water on the bag. In a few seconds, you will be able to break the 'slab' into pieces. Open the bag and dump into a container for the microwave or stove. Only a thin film remains on the inside of the bag.

They are restaurant supply stores which are mostly wholesale but often sell to the public. You will probably have to buy containers by the case. Just ask the restaurant owner/manager where they get theirs or go online.

Finally, for stock try freezing in ice cube trays and then putting in a plastic bag. That way you can thaw out just the amount you need.

Oct 24, 2010
RichardM in Cookware