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Making Homemade Sauerkraut

Thanks so much for your experience and for that great photo of sauerkraut in the old horse trough.
We certainly will keep all future batches cooler in the cellar. But decided to consider the slightly "winey" smell and taste of that most recent batch to be a natural variation, interesting and good enough to eat, and have suffered absolutely no ill consequences. Homemade sauerkraut beats the other stuff hands down!

Aug 07, 2014
Kayde in Home Cooking

Making Homemade Sauerkraut

In Northern California we get a lot of cabbage throughout the winter and summer, so I'm on my third batch of kraut since February. I use a mixture of cabbage, radishes and carrots, maybe a handful of caraway seeds, inside an old fashioned heavy 2 gallon crock with a lid. I pack and weigh down with a rock on a stack of small plates. When weather gets hot I have put it in a cellar. And sometimes have added another sliced cabbage midway in fermentation with success. Anyway, it's been a happy process.

But for 10 days I went on a family trip with my aging aunt and mother, leaving the kraut in the care of my husband. And returned last night to a batch that now smells distinctly winey. The liquid is cloudier than I remember it too. Still tastes pretty good, but different from before my trip. And there were a few large scummy bubbles. The rock was growing mold, so my husband took it out, but no mold anywhere else (and that has happened with previous batches - I just toss the rock in the dishwasher.) My husband says weather was hot and he regrets that he didn't put the crock in the cellar.

Still. Hate to toss it. I cleaned up the scum and wiped the sides of the crock, skimmed as I removed the plates. I packed it into jars and put all in the refrig. Like I said: It tastes good, just has a bit of a wine character. I'm taking a wait-and-see approach on this batch, but would like to avoid a recurrence.

Your thoughts?

Jul 31, 2014
Kayde in Home Cooking

Pickled Seasonal Vegetables: Home Cooking Dish of the Month for June 2014

Thanks, and I'll look for that thread now. I've been struck by how easy and safe this process is. Great pickled vegies with so little effort. Forgot to mention in the post above, but my fermentation is also in the dark.

Jun 22, 2014
Kayde in Home Cooking

Pickled Seasonal Vegetables: Home Cooking Dish of the Month for June 2014

This week I started my second batch of sauerkraut. First batch I started in late April when the cabbages from our CSA were starting to fill the back of my vegie drawer. Sauerkraut is an anaerobic process using beneficial bacteria that thrive in salt. Aside from pure deliciousness, it's a great way to add good bios.

Using the 1mm disc on my food processor, I sliced up a Napa cabbage along with 2 more, then some carrots, Daikon, some fresh dill, put it all in a great big shallow bowl with a handful of kosher salt. Mixed it up, tasted and let it sit for a couple of hours. Then I piled it into an old fashioned ceramic crock, shoved it down tight so the liquid came up, piled plates on top and shoved some more. Remember this is an anaerobic process, so very important to keep the vegies immersed. I cleaned a rock and put it on top. Spooned off the scum that rose from time to time.

At first kept it on the kitchen counter, but we had a hot spell and I put it in the cellar. Optimal temperature for this process is about 60F.

Doneness is a matter of taste. I took some out to eat at about 2 weeks and it was great. Then I cut up another cabbage, threw in some caraway seeds, mixed it with the rest and let the re-combined sauerkraut sit for another month. That batch was even better, and some people like it at 6 months.

This week's batch is only cabbage and carrots, lots of carrots, with some caraway seed and a few cayenne peppers scattered around. We'll see...

Jun 21, 2014
Kayde in Home Cooking
1

Fresno and around

Thanks so much for those older threads, Melanie. I thought I'd done a thorough search of this board for everything in and around Fresno, but missed these. Now I know that next time in Fresno I'll have to check out Cal State ice cream too.

Mar 31, 2014
Kayde in California

Fresno and around

I had never heard of apple jacks before, but these didn't look like that. Next time I'll take a picture. More folded twist, I think both sides toward the center. Very rich flakey dough, very brown, and on return I'd ask just which fat it was. Loaded with cinnamon and some finely chopped apples, though it was the cinnamon and crispiness that brought me back for more.
A guy who lives in the neighborhood told us to go there for beerocks, and now I'm wondering whether the apple jacks might be another carryover from the previous German Bakery...

Mar 11, 2014
Kayde in California

Los Banos taqueria

On our trips to and from Fresno we like to stop at La Michoacana - a market/carniceria/taqueria right on 152 and not far from Interstate 5. In back next to the pretty darned good-looking meat counter, they offer takeout, including excellent burritos and tacos. The fast-moving line always has a wide variety of people, so looks like they've built a local reputation. Along with our tacos, on the latest return trip we also got some deliciously crispy, meaty chicharrones.
As a bonus, by the register was a box of ripe guayabas.

La Michoacana Carniceria y Taqueria
209 827 3155
820 W. Pacheco Blvd, Los Banos 93635

Mar 10, 2014
Kayde in California

Fresno and around

Thanks again for all the discussion. We wound up mainly grabbing sandwiches between shows. Also between shows we had some good tamales and pozole - a fundraiser for a Mexican dance school down on Fulton.
I want to note Panaderia Natalie at 935 E. Olive. Locals tell me it was a German bakery, now Mexican, but they kept the beerocks. I'm no expert on this topic, but the classic meat-and-cabbage ones were very good. A cheese/jalpeno version was also tasty. And they make a wonderful crispy browned apple cinnamon pastry they call Apple Jacks.
A few blocks down on E. Olive toward Neighborhood Thrift was a very good Mediterranean spot. Some of the best tabouli I've ever had.

Mar 10, 2014
Kayde in California

Fresno and around

Thanks. We've been to Cafe Corazon several times, as it's in the middle of many Rogue venues. This place is a gem - they roast their own beans, always have a variety of styles they brew for individual cups. Mainly a coffee-and-pastry spot that invites lingering, but they offer breakfast on weekends. Their Mardi Gras breakfast was very good: quinoa with beans, sausage and an egg. Aside from being so darned good, it's definitely one of the places to be.

Mar 08, 2014
Kayde in California

Fresno and around

In fact we bundled up against the drizzle and walked to the Water Tower. Dusty Buns was the only truck and he told us that lately that has been the case on Fridays, sometimes along with a vegie-local truck. I had the Dusty Bun - sauteed chicken in sauce with excellent coarse slaw; spouse had the special grass-fed beef burger with avocado and cheese, and we shared an order of split fingerling fries, well browned, served with creamy garlic sauce and home-made kethup. Very, very good. They said to thank you for sending us, and thanks from us as well.

Feb 28, 2014
Kayde in California

Fresno and around

On the latter, I think you mean George's. We wandered by there for the second time, always after having eaten well somewhere else. It caters to downtown workers, looks very good and we plan to come by next week.

Feb 28, 2014
Kayde in California

Fresno and around

We are in town both Fridays. And near the Tower. Is this around lunch?

Feb 28, 2014
Kayde in California

Fresno and around

Thanks. I'd forgotten about Trelio.

Feb 26, 2014
Kayde in California

Fresno and around

Beloved Spouse and I are going to Fresno for 2 long weekends of the Rogue Fringe Festival with three days in Yosemite between. About 9 days total in the general area. We'll probably mainly stay around the Tower area on busy performance days, but we would appreciate tips for all around Fresno for the slow days, the route to and from Yosemite.
We enjoy just about all good food - hole in the wall barbecue, family Asian with tripe, handmade tortillas with lengua, various spins on local.
On a previous trip about 8 months ago we failed to find boreekas (?). We did find Diana's, a good Persian-Armenian spot, and a Cambodian place with very good soup. We meant to but didn't go to Schoolhouse in Sanger, though would consider that again this time around.
But a lot can change in 8 months, especially the food biz. As I said: any and all tips from hounds who know the area.
Many, many thanks.

Feb 25, 2014
Kayde in California

Gas Ranges: Frigidaire, Kitchen Aid, GE Profile

Time replace our 30" gas range (oven quit due to lack of replacement circuit board!) so I've been checking around. Our appliance repair folks, who also repair Wolf, Viking etc. say that GE is best for replacement parts. I want a couple good hot gas burners, good simmer all round, good baking and roasting. Don't know that I need 2 ovens. Looked at the "commercial style" options and considered Verona, but thought options have improved with the home-style brands. According to specs, the GE Profile does pretty well on high BTU and simmer.

Sep 22, 2013
Kayde in Cookware

Desco - Regional Italian in Old Oakland

We enjoyed everything about Donato Enoteca when we had business in Redwood City last year and are glad to see him open a spot nearby.

Sep 19, 2013
Kayde in San Francisco Bay Area

Mi Pueblo markets files for Chapter 11

Every time I walk into that place I fill my cart. The variety of products not so easily found elsewhere, as well as the atmosphere, have made me a big fan of the one on High Street. So many kinds of queso fresca, salsas, those hefty tortilla chips, at least 3 different kinds of tripe, beef tongues and other things my local butcher doesn't carry, at excellent prices. In the last year I've seen that many people other than immigrants have discovered that store, including neighbors and the local fire station.
Just hope they don't emerge from bankruptcy on the backs of the people who work there. I'll protest e-verify anywhere, but presume that Safeway and other chains use it. Correct me if I'm wrong.

Jul 24, 2013
Kayde in San Francisco Bay Area

Fresno Asian

Great, I'd like to hear what you think. We had a good time just poking around places and look forward to a return trip.

Jun 26, 2013
Kayde in California

Persian/Armenian in Fresno

Thanks for these. Next time we'll be better prepared.

Jun 26, 2013
Kayde in California

Fresno Asian

On a recent visit to Fresno, a Hmong colleague suggested Angkor Restaurant and recommended a pork liver dish and Cambodian Pho. From a scan of the multi-page laminated menu, we guessed that might be #14 Rice Soup (strips of pork liver with blood cubes) and #16 Angkor Special Noodle Soup. Both were good, but my Rice Soup was a bit bland until the server brought me a bowl of salty chili-based condiment that really sparked it up. As we were finishing, she gave us recommendations for a return visit. #59 Stir Fried Internal Pork with Pickled Papaya was probably the liver dish our colleague had in mind, as well as #48 Spicy Beef Soup. I’d also like to try $61 Lab, #1 Beef Salad and #56 Sweet Sour Cat Fish Soup.
Don’t come for ambiance – Angkor Restaurant is a utilitarian space in an uninviting strip mall off E. Olive Ave., but we really liked the food and it's open late. Open Mon.-Thurs. 9am to 12am, Fri.-Sun. 9am to 1am.

Angkor Restaurant Pho 2009
4853 E. Olive Ave.
Fresno 93727
559 454 0887

Jun 26, 2013
Kayde in California

Persian/Armenian in Fresno

At the last minute, Beloved Spouse and I decided to make a mini-vacation of a work trip to Fresno, and, thanks to this board and local tips, had a good time. It seems we came during a cold snap: a mere 94 degrees F in the afternoon, though deep in Forestiere Gardens thermometers read in the low 80s.

We were interested in the fruits of Armenian immigration to the area, and were hungry when we arrived at Diana's, a family-run Persian/Armenian spot tucked back in a shopping mall off W. Shaw Ave. The husband and wife team were both warm hosts. Since I asked, she let us know exactly which dishes on the menu were Persian, which Armenian, which straddled both, and who made what. More Persian than we anticipated, but very good in its own right. Lentil soup, hummus and lightly spiced ground meat dolmas were delicious, as well as the Shirazi chopped salad, so when the Shish kebab, Barg kebab (filet mignon) and Koobideh (ground beef) arrived, pure deliciousness drove us to taste them all, but most kebabs wound up in a box. I did made room to taste their Persian ice cream - a delicate rosewater flavor and fragrance.
I'd come back and try the daily stews (“100% Persian!”) for $12.95.

Diana's
3050 W. Shaw Ave. Suite 106
tel: 559 277 9500

We never did manage to find beerocks/bureks on this visit, but would appreciate some tips.

Jun 26, 2013
Kayde in California

Sir and Star at The Olema

Glad you made it, and that you enjoyed it as much as we did. Quirkiness just goes with the territory, take it or leave it. The food is an extraordinary value and they are committed to lower costs. I agree that it's worth an outing, but Sir and Star feels more casual than Manka's ever did. On both weekend visits there were several parties that came straight from the trails.
Correction in my own post about the ice cream: the toppings are house-made, not the Strauss. May have misunderstood the server. But each combo I tried was very good, and I have become a fan of the olive oil and salt.

Jun 25, 2013
Kayde in San Francisco Bay Area

Waukesha County Indian

While visiting family in the Milwaukee area, a friend in Brookfield took me to Taste of India for the lunch buffet. Tucked in a mall off West Bluemound Road, we were the first to arrive, but it filled up fast. I was impressed that they go way beyond the standards. The buffet offered many vegetarian options among the array of freshly made tandoori meats, curries, pulses, soup, chutneys, as well as sweets. Lunch buffet is 11:30 - 3pm 7 days a week, and they do dinner and catering. Other people know about this place? Refreshing alternative to the chains that dominate that strip of Mall Land.

Taste of India
17800 West Bluemound Road
(262) 796 8200

Jun 22, 2013
Kayde in Great Lakes

Ark Chinese Restaurant in Alameda

Yup, and the variation is amazing.

Jun 20, 2013
Kayde in San Francisco Bay Area

Ark Chinese Restaurant in Alameda

We've had very good dinners at The Ark, and those chewy noodles are worth going a tad out of the way. Once went with a huge family group and they readily made vegetarian versions of several dishes to accommodate many of that gathering. The kids loved to watch the noodles being made, as well as the fruit carvings.

Jun 19, 2013
Kayde in San Francisco Bay Area

Michael Bauer's incomprehensible rating logic

Interesting discussion. While I sense that my enthusiasms differ from Bauer's, there's no animosity here - he's just part of the scene. No rating system is ever going to capture the full experience, and that's where the whole review and extended discussion are useful.

Having been to Sir and Star, I think his review gave a fine sense of the food and of the place, and it was clear enough that he gave a boost for excellent value. Fine with me - I really like this place, especially that it's relatively accessible. When more people on this board go to Sir and Star, I'd like to hear what they have to say.
http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/899888

On the other hand, in comments on Bauer's sfgate blog, it struck me that several people chose to carp about the chef-owners' grooming and attire in the photos. Oh, well...
http://insidescoopsf.sfgate.com/blog/...

Stockton area

Thanks for all the cherry tips. In a few weeks I'll be back from Wisconsin (where there are lots of sour cherries later in the summer) and would like to return to Stockton/Lodi before it gets too too hot. Maybe early June.

May 07, 2013
Kayde in California

Stockton area

Just this week I started seeing cherries offered from trucks in the East Bay. Given year-to-year variation, around when is the cherry season in Stockton/Linden? Are they mainly Bing, pie or Rainier? I'd go out of my way for good cherries, and the season is short. Does the orchard on West Lane have a stand or u-pick? Any other recommendations?
Thanks much.

May 05, 2013
Kayde in California

Sir and Star at The Olema

Thanks much, Melanie, for finding and adding all the contact info.
Food is key, but, it's worth saying - I loved the style. Dark woodwork, cream and distressed wood give the old Victorian hotel a spare feel, while baskets of branches, dried kelp and the odd stuffed bird add a touch of whimsy.

May 04, 2013
Kayde in San Francisco Bay Area

Stockton area

It was great produce and I'm sorry to hear it may soon be gone. It would be worthwhile to plan a return around those cherries.

May 02, 2013
Kayde in California