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annimal's Profile

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Where to buy Black Currant puree?

Hey folks,

I am hoping to find a local source of black currant puree so I don't need to spend $30-$70 to get it shipped frozen. Does anyone have a source in the DC/MD/NoVa area that sells specialty fruit purees?

Thanks!!

NY Style Pizza in Chi?

santullo's, santullo's, santullo's. can't go wrong with this place.

May 01, 2007
annimal in Chicago Area

Where can i get a good prosciutto and mozzarella sandwich?

Actually, the Tribune's food section was just nominated for a James Beard award, alongside the San Francisco Chronicle. So it might not be as bad of a resource as you think.

Apr 05, 2007
annimal in Chicago Area

Suddenly making gefilte fish - am I an idiot?

My Bubbie tastes the fish raw, then spits it out. I'm not sure if I can get to that point, even though I do eat sushi...

Apr 02, 2007
annimal in Home Cooking

Green garlic recipes?

Once i substituted green garlic in a pesto recipe and it was by far the best i've ever had. And it actually got stronger after I froze the pesto. I also used to love cooking with garlic scapes when I could get them. Stupid Chicago farmer's markets 1. not starting for a long time and 2. no one having good stuff like green garlic.

Mar 19, 2007
annimal in Home Cooking

Lime recipes?

there's a recipe floating around for Lime-Honey chocolate truffles by Pierre Herme. It's fantastic. I'd make some of those too, though they won't use up all your limes. Make truffles and serve them with limeade.

Mar 14, 2007
annimal in Home Cooking

Cooking Away this Starbucks Coffee Liqueur - Ideas?

when i tried that starbucks liqueur, i thought it had an incredibly strong coffee flavor. so it might not be so great in some of those desserts. probably not bad brushed over stuff, like the brownies, but you might want to add extra sugar. i tried it in a white russian and i couldn't handle it diluted with cream and vodka.

Mar 14, 2007
annimal in Home Cooking

Condiments for Cheese

someone above mentioned quince pastes... any sort of fruit paste is going to be a great foil for cheese. 34 Degrees makes a variety of flavors (pear, plum, fig, quince, apricot and spiced cherry) that all have pairing suggestions on the label. They're available at Whole Foods and some Wild Oats. I'm also really partial to latino guava pastes.

Mar 13, 2007
annimal in Cheese

Microplane v. Zester

luckily now you can get a little cheese holder attachment for the wide microplanes. Please, please buy a Microplane. I waited a while on buying mine, but now I zest/grate everything I can because it's so FUN.

god, we're total sickos. and yes, be careful not to zest your fingers while using the microplane.

Mar 06, 2007
annimal in Cookware

What to eat with Dulce de Leche

in some parts of brazil, they eat dulce de leche with cheese (queijo minas, to be specific). i've also had it as a filling for layer cakes, and mostly just eaten it on cookies like the marias. yum yum!

Feb 15, 2007
annimal in Home Cooking

Habib's? - Edgewater

It's right down the block from me. I have only been in once, got a fattoush salad and some stuffed grape leaves. It's pretty good, nothing spectacular, but definitely good for a craving or a quick and easy meal. I liked my fattoush salad a lot, actually.

Feb 06, 2007
annimal in Chicago Area

Bar Food - Monday night specials

Fizz Bar and Grill on Lincoln just north of Belmont/Ashland- Mondays are burger and a beer for $5. The burgers and fries are gooood.

Feb 05, 2007
annimal in Chicago Area

Kitchen shears

i've got a pair from Messermeister, they're great because they do practically everything. They come apart, you can use one side as a knife, they have a bottle opener, a "twig cutter", a screwdriver, and god knows what else. I'm very happy with them.

Feb 05, 2007
annimal in Cookware

&@#*!! - OR - How the heck do I clean my enameled grill pan?

i've used baking soda to clean my enameled pans when i've messed them up bad. baking soda and water does the trick most every time.

Feb 02, 2007
annimal in Cookware

Steel cut oatmeal

i don't know, i've never had a problem with it. they never feel undercooked or anything. i only cook very small amounts at a time though.

Feb 02, 2007
annimal in Home Cooking

Garlic that has started to sprout?

it is super delicious when it's "green" (before drying). AND you get garlic scapes if you grow it.

Feb 01, 2007
annimal in General Topics

Steel cut oatmeal

Wow, i really don't do any of these complicated cooking methods. I wake up, put 1/3 cup of oats and 1 cup of liquid (rice milk is my fav.) in a pot, add some currants, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. It's done in 15 minutes.

Feb 01, 2007
annimal in Home Cooking

Steel cut oatmeal

i add the dried fruit while cooking, they get softer and retain some of the liquid. I sometimes cut up bigger ones like cherries. I haven't done nuts but I'd do them on top.

Feb 01, 2007
annimal in Home Cooking

Do you eat dark chocolate?

Good to know, I'm making chocolates for a fundraiser and I don't want to go broke buying supplies then having to charge seemingly absurd prices to make up for it. Won't raise anything that way.

Feb 01, 2007
annimal in General Topics

Do you eat dark chocolate?

Actually, that blogger posted his story here, there was some good discussion surrounding it. I'm sure you can find the thread through the search.

Feb 01, 2007
annimal in General Topics

What makes good Cochinita Pibil?

sometimes the meat just doesn't pick up a lot of flavor... I guess that's a big thing for me, i like it super tender and super flavorful, i don't only want to taste pork. i didn't think the recipe posted here looked too promising, to be honest.

Jan 31, 2007
annimal in General Topics

Do you eat dark chocolate?

I eat all chocolate... though not so much milk anymore. I currently have 3 bittersweets (60%, 63% and 70%) from different companies as I was doing a bit of a taste test, a big block of semi-sweet and a big block of milk.

Odkaty - Have you (or anyone else for that matter) had the big bar of bittersweet from trader joe's? I'm going to be making a large amount of truffles soon and I'm trying to find the best bang for the buck in chocolate. That thing surely would fit the bill, pricewise. I just don't know if it's going to live up to my nitpicky requirements.

Jan 31, 2007
annimal in General Topics

Best Sushi in Chicago?

I love Tsuki. It's got a delicious, creative menu geared towards diners ordering a lot of little things and sharing. I've never been to Mirai or Katsu, but I've heard great things about both. Another one to check out is Sushi Wabi.

Jan 31, 2007
annimal in Chicago Area

Opinions on Cuisinart MultiClad

i picked up a cuisinart multiclad pro saute pan at marshalls on clearance. it's GREAT! i'm so happy with it, it's affordable, heats evenly and my only complaint is that they didn't have a second, larger one for me to buy!!

Jan 31, 2007
annimal in Cookware

Sugar Substitutes for Cooking

fruitsweet is highly concentrated fruit juice. if honey etc. is not good, then i guess this isn't either. well, i hope my friend didn't have any problems from the cake. if he did he didn't tell me.

Jan 30, 2007
annimal in Home Cooking

Sugar Substitutes for Cooking

well, as this debate is pointing out, it really depends on whether you want to cut the sugar for natural/less processed alternatives or for health concerns like diabetes. I personally use maple syrup, honey, or fruitsweet (a super concentrated pineapple/pear juice), or sucanat sometimes. lately i've been making things that are much more sensitive to substitutions so i haven't been using it much.

diabetics, what happens when you use natural sweeteners vs. chemical ones? do you still have problems? i periodically cook for a friend who's diabetic and i'm curious about the sugar issues. i used fruitsweet the one time i baked for him.

Jan 30, 2007
annimal in Home Cooking

Steel cut oatmeal

if it's hard then it's undercooked, but it should definitely be chewy. i make it almost every day... i use rice milk instead of water, often throwing in some dried currants, cranberries or cherries and topping it off with a little maple syrup or honey. Sometimes I do sliced bananas and maple syrup at the end and it turns out tasting like banana bread. yum.

Jan 30, 2007
annimal in Home Cooking

Moving from D.C. to CHI and looking for places similar to home..

Chicago has a plethora of high quality sushi restaurants. Try a bunch and you'll find something you enjoy. I personally like Tsuki, but I haven't had a chance to try many of the actual quality places.

For chicken: You should try El Llano. It's a Columbian place, they have one on Clark and one somewhere else. It's amazing rotisserie chicken, with sides like plantains and potatoes. It's just fantastic. I've never had the Peruvian rotisserie chicken, but this stuff is addictive like crack.

Jan 26, 2007
annimal in Chicago Area

Navel/Blood Orange Hybrid hits the markets

I think i have had those! My brother just went to LA and brought back a bunch of pink oranges for us that I know he bought at the Santa Monica market (this was just last weekend). They were great! I only got one, I guess I need to take my own trip soon.

Jan 22, 2007
annimal in General Topics

Candy Making Supplies

Hi Chicago folks,

I'm looking for a store to buy packages for homemade candy, basically just plain white boxes, maybe inserts or some other packaging accessories. Any suggestions?

I'm trying to avoid going too far out of the city. Thanks!

Jan 21, 2007
annimal in Chicago Area