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Can't miss food in Raleigh?

I definitely think j betskis is worth the money and time. Also, Sitti is consistently really good. It's cool because you can order a bunch of little tastes of stuff you might not ordinarily try. Also, a really good place that you'd never expect with modest food is backyard bistro. They have great ribs, wings, and burgers. The burger meat is the grind from the angus barn, and they'll serve it mid-rare if you want. Not gonna blow your mind, but if you're with a group of people who aren't adventurous, this is the spot.

137 S. Wilmington St., Raleigh, NC 27601

Jul 30, 2010

Lab equipment in the kitchen

Are you using this immersion circulator? If not, I'd love to take it off your hands if you don't want to let it go to waste. Or if you want to use it, you should see if you can find TK's book Under Pressure at a local library. It's pretty inspiring and you can get a lot of flavor out of your food with very little effort. If you do want to part with it, however, drop me a line. I've got a food truck and wanna feature a lot of sous vide stuff...what would be better than that...?

Jul 30, 2010

portland me restaurants

Wow... I must have hit the blue spoon on a bad night because everything that i had was overseasoned and the food was ok at best. we first got pancetta wrapped dates that took about 25 minutes. when they came out they were rock-hard and boring. just three burnt dates on a white plate. then for mains we got portuguese stew that tasted like salty canned tomato product and somthing else that was so bad i can't recall. i do remember a great brussel sprout gratin that was terribly overseasoned. nothing that night seemed really inspired... it was just kinda blah...

Sunday Brunch in Freeport to Portland, Maine

There's a new restaurant where mims used to be on commercial street that has a really great brunch. They're kind of doing a soft opening, so it's not being aggresively advertised, but it's top-notch food. It's called the Farmer's Table, and it features local seasonal produce. I had a take on corned beef hash with sweet potatoes and braised local brisket which i would highly recommend. It comes with two eggs and a choice of great bread... not like most places where the rye bread often comes out of a plastic bag. My s.o. had eggs benedict that were great as well. You can probably find the menu online

Bite Me Organic Pizza in Burlington, VT

I went here for lunch and got a slice for $3.50. It was definitely a good pizza and I'd go back for a whole pie. The prices were around $20 for specialty pies, which in Burlington is definitely a good price. The crust is nice and crispy, kinda like john's pizza in new york. They have an array of quality toppings.... A must try in Burlington. I still haven't really found a quality pie anyplace else. I go to Junior's, but it's expensive and mediocre at best.

Restaurant week picks

I will be visiting Boston for two days during restaurant week and need some recommendations. I was looking at the posted menus, but i was told that a lot of the best places don't even post their menus early because they book up quickly no matter what. Are there any recommendations based on the list on:

I've heard l'espalier for lunch one day, but what about for two nights' dinners? thanks

Ribs and Boiling [split from Ontario]

that was my first reaction, too, but if you wrap it well enough, it will stay intact. after heating, it stretches so thin that you barely touch it when it comes outta the oven and the saran wrap basically unwraps the ribs and balls up into a tiny lump (... kinda like when you cook something for way too long in the microwave with saran wrap on it, then remove it.)

May 16, 2007
MOOKIECOOKIE in Home Cooking

Big Lebowski Party

maybe some pinkie-toe shaped hot dogs, cookies, or some other bite-sized delights.

May 15, 2007
MOOKIECOOKIE in General Topics

Ruths Chris in Boston...worth it?

ruth's chris is terrible, over-buttered crap. they ruin great steaks by dousing them with butter, acting like they have some kinda secret style. i couldn't believe how buttery my mashed potatoes were, i should've eaten them with my straw. but if you like food that takes skill to make, go anywhere but there.

What to order in an Americanized Chinese Restaurant?

For some reason i kinda like the chicken wings (with or without hair) at amerinese restaurants. usually i end up with some chicken and broccoli hot and spicy, since it's never breaded or battered. maybe something in black bean sauce if it's offered. otherwise, i'll get some eggplant dish or vegetable in oyster sauce, or something lame like that. as you can see, my strategy is to go as basic as possible, and at least you avoid making the "pupu platter" later that night, if you catch my drift.

May 15, 2007
MOOKIECOOKIE in General Topics

Ribs and Boiling [split from Ontario]

i'd rather not enter a competition than put my face next to boiled ribs. it's injustice to the meat.

May 15, 2007
MOOKIECOOKIE in Home Cooking

Ribs and Boiling [split from Ontario]

old dog knows what's up!!! everyone touting the boil sacrifices taste for texture, and i'm sure some people think they're great, but boiling ruins the ribs.

I use a method similar to old dog, but i take the dry-rubbed ribs, fire up the charcoal on extremely high heat and sear in the juices. after that i let the ribs cool and then plastic wrap them and foil them, toss em in the oven at 325 or so, let the seared-in juices tenderize the meat internally, then toss 'em back on the grill, sauce and flip 'em 'til the sauce gets a nice glazed over outside. then i take em off the grill, let them again internally cook and then cut them about 20 minutes after they come off the grill and serve. The real key to winning ribs will always be the flavor unless you're chillin with a bunch of chow-chumps.

p.s. it's NOT a good thing to have to pick your ribs up with a spatula because they're so soft (notice i did not say tender).

May 15, 2007
MOOKIECOOKIE in Home Cooking

Funky, artsy (maybe italian) restaurant, seattle

that might be it, but i know we went there because of an inticing write-up... but it could be the same place. i know i do tend to be a little more lenient with my critiquing when i don't have to pick up the tab. i won't recommend it to my sister none-the-less. thanks, mookie

Funky, artsy (maybe italian) restaurant, seattle

i lived in seattle about 7 years ago and a friend and i went to dinner at a real funky restaurant with mannequins and chairs hanging from the ceiling. i remember it being very good food, but can't think of the name. my sister is currently in seattle and asking recommendations, but i can't remember the name of this place for the life of me. can someone please be kind enough and refresh my memory (or lack thereof)?

Pizzeria Roma (Durham)

Yeah, I didn't wanna be the first to pop rcsimm's tomatoe, but roma's pizza is garbage. I've found a few places in the triangle with acceptable pizza... roma did not make the list. I've never really had a slice in boston, since ny had plenty of pies to offer, so roma might replicate boston pie.

Bocci probably would have the best pizza in the chapel hill- durham area, but i wouldn't get on my soapbox to promote it. i mean, just because it's one of the top in the area doesn't mean it induces nostalgia.

Raleigh "Junk" Food tour - suggestions?

not definitely in raleigh, but you might as well hit it up if you need an appetizer before your hot dogs: rub's smokehouse in morrisville, nc. it's on nc-54 on the way from chapel hill if you prefer not to take the all-too-beaten path of i-40. once again, not in raleigh, but the proverbial icing on the cake.

Durham/Chapel Hill: Where do you find consistency?

what a great point about mcdonald's!!! it's really difficult to think of a time at mccy d's that has been any less or more satisfying than the time before.

i think that wimpie's grill on hillsborough rd is extremely consistent. once again, it's not out-of-this-world food, but it's always as good as burger-joint food can get, consistently...

i used to think of the q-shack's brisket as consistent, but it's started getting a little drier as of late, and some of the latinos cutting the brisket will trim away the chili-rubbed fat layer, and they don't always cut it thin at the edges and thicker in the middle of the brisket, which is how it should be cut. it will be cut that way if the manager is working the line, but the managers always seem to be at the cash register now... watching the clock...

this topic really shouldn't be so difficult, but for some reason i can't wholeheartedly name any restaurant in the triangle as consistent. the federal is a good one, but i'm usually a few deep before i order food, so i don't know that i'm the best judge for that. if you've ever read any of my other posts, i'm sure you'll know that i'll throw los comales at the top of the list, but i'm biased apparently, because i love everything they put in my little basket, and they seem to always serve the food quickly with me, but i've heard the contrary....

Holiday Menus In The RDU Triangle

I went to Elaine's on Franklin last year for vday and was unimpressed. the food was good, but for the price i paid, i think it should exceed "good." I really didn't crave anything that they had to offer. it all looked good, but nothing jumped out at me, and i had looked at a full menu the night before to get prepared for what i thought was to come.

the food was pre-prepared and we had a rather late reservation so we could go out afterwards for a nice evening, but the food we ate looked like it was leftovers. i guess by the end of the night, you get what you get, even though you pay the same money. it's a crappy way to do business. i rarely will go to a nice restaurant and get any roast, or pre-prepared food, just because i like tasting the freshness, and there weren't many fresh options there.

even when elaine's is bad for elaine's though, the food is still enjoyable. i just didn't want a tour of casseroles on valentine's day.

Triangle BBQ

my favorite dish i had at one of these restos in ny was the "phony abalone"... and it tasted like real abalone, and with that name it's seared into my memory.

New Thai Resto in Durham

i guess i'm kinda in a different boat. i like the thai cafe, but think the chicken masaman is the second worst thing on the menu to the bbq chicken. I love the spicy basil chicken, especially. The pad prik with pork has never been a bad choice, either, and i think their red and green curries are delicious, especially the prik king. there's nothing more refreshing than the green papaya salad on a summer day. it's so fun to eat with the sticky rice. i have lived in thailand and am actually going back in two weeks, so my criteria, unlike durhamois, does not include attractive serving dishes and colorful garnishes. i ate food with chickens walking around, pecking at pebbles near my feet. I do understand point c, and they could use some higher-quality ingredients, but people already complain about the 10 to 12 dollar meals on the menu now on the chow board, i can't imagine the durham backlash with a fifteen dollar plate of food.

the following letters are in reference to durhamois' criteria above:
there are plenty of dishes, as the ones i've mentioned, that have both (a) and (b) criterion. The (c) is kinda deficient, and i'd like to see some thai eggplants and maybe a daily fresh fish selection to increase quality and authenticity. i'm not even gonna touch on (d) again, because asian food is supposed to be about THE FOOD.

i'm not trying to discount (d) as a general dining preference, but i don't see it a necessary aspect of asian food.

but one final thing, if you want both (a) and (b), why would you like the flat flavor of the masaman curry. i think a lot of these bashes on thai cafe are from people who consider themselves thai food lovers just because they enjoy pad thai...

BBQ+Salad bar=good chow

I would never eat a raw vegetable from a bbq place. it's sacreligious for vegetables to not be drained of any and all nutritional value down south. will a nice medley of collards, turnip greens, and cabbage topped with a few hushpuppies suffice?

Milltown - Chapel Hill

yeah, these fries are the worst, and people all over durham talk about how great they are. the owners of milltown also own the federal, where they have these crappy "frites." my supervisor at work raves about them and i've never been able to eat these things, even when i'm wasted. to make it worse, i like to hit up the new resto by the old cooks at the fed, (piedmont in durham) and they have the frites as well with every lunch order. luckily their side salad is great, so i don't have to look at the free fries next to my sammy. on a side note- you have to try the piedmont pastrami. they smoke it in house and it's absolutely delicious ("the king of the smoked meats" -george costanza). if only they had rye....

North Carolina BBQ


Favorite Seinfeld food moments

this is just on the brim of being a "food" episode, but how about when elaine's friend, the runner from somewhere in africa, is winning the nyc marathon only to grab a cup of what he assumes is water since kramer is standing right next to the water station. he mistakenly grabs kramer's cup filled with scalding hot coffee and dumps it on his head right at the end of the race.

Jan 05, 2007
MOOKIECOOKIE in Not About Food

Favorite Seinfeld food moments

yes, it's not a purse, it's a european carry-all.

Jan 05, 2007
MOOKIECOOKIE in Not About Food

what is it about eating out?

there are so many things that make eating out so much more enjoyable. i have recently discovered that i need to save money, so eating at home is the only option left unless i want to eat fast food twice a i am seeing more reasons everyday why i like eating out.

it's such a pain to shop for food. i don't ever find a grocery store that has everything i want. they either have good prices on packaged goods and terrible produce, or a limited variety, or it's just too damn expensive everywhere you turn.

and then you get home and all the crap you bought might as well not even be in the fridge, because you see a commercial on tv for something you really want, but you didn't buy the right stuff to make anything similar. before you know it, you do want to cook something, but half the ingredients in the fridge have gone bad... and here's the new dilemma: do i go out and get more portobellas and tomatoes, or should i just spend the same amount of time eating out and not having to hassle with prep, cooking, and cleaning?

but it's so great to go out and eat... you can choose what you want to eat... much of which is too labor intensive to do at home. you can drink stuff you wouldn't normally have at the house. but the best thing about eating out, is that when the tataki is not rare enough, for example, you don't have to feel like you messed up dinner, because it wasn't you, but rather the chef who goofed. so you send it back and get something else that more fits your liking.

if you're a sweets person then there's nothing more thrilling than scanning the selection for the dessert that perfectly fits your mood. then, probably the best part for me is seeing the bill and leaving a big fat tip for an unsuspecting server (i'm a bartender and often people think i'm out of place in "nice" restaurants.) but then again... maybe i should keep the dough in the pocket and i won't be on such a tight budget.

Jan 03, 2007
MOOKIECOOKIE in General Topics

Favorite Seinfeld food moments

a couple of other good ones are when kramer is trying to get the latvian orthodox nun to NOT be attracted to him and he bathes in garlic and something else... vinegar, maybe so she is no longer attracted to him.

the other food theme not mentioned is when jerry finds the chunky candybar wrapper in his couch, which instantly informs him who has been in his apt> "OH, I KNOW THE CHUNKY THAT LEFT THESE CHUNKIES.... NEWMAN!!!"

Jan 03, 2007
MOOKIECOOKIE in Not About Food

Favorite Seinfeld food moments

definitely a muffin

Jan 03, 2007
MOOKIECOOKIE in Not About Food

Japanese in Raleigh/Cary

sorry, like2run, but sushi thai is not good, and should not be mentioned anywhere except for the cheap eats blogs. sushi thai is terrible in comparison to waraji... but oscillatewildly claims this new place to be in another class than waraji, which is by far the best well-established sushi joint in the triangle. that being said: in no way, shape, or form, should anyone mention that low-end dollar "sushi" when we're talking about the premier sushi restaurants in the triangle. the sushi at the whole foods is better quality than at sushi-thai... seriously.

Chapel HIll: Red Lotus

i know what you're saying about neo-china... i tried it because someone had recommended it on one of the chowhound threads, but it had that same, terrible, viscous sauce you speak of. it's alright for disgusting american chinese, because at least they use some vegetables other than cabbage, waterchestnuts and bamboo shoots like most am-chine restaurants, but it doesn't make up for that generic sauce. they did have this shrimp roll appetizer that i liked, but it was just because i'd never seen before and it was made with a jumbo shrimp rather than 10 maggot-sized shrimp as most shrimp egg rolls have. but folks JUST SAY NO TO NEO-CHINA.