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Cocktails featuring Fee Brother's Bitters?

I'm a lamer because I went to the Fee's website (I thought) and tried to find recipes and failed. I blame it on visiting family distracting me. I'll check again. Thanks--Manhattan were the first (and only) thing I thought that might work w/this bitters.

Mar 16, 2009
TimeMachine in Spirits

Cocktails featuring Fee Brother's Bitters?

I just bought a bottle of Fee Brother's Old Fashioned Bitters and was wondering if anyone had a cocktail recipe they wouldn't mind sharing that was particularly good with this flavor of bitters. I'm a little stumped as to what to mix with such a strong cinnamony spice flavor.

(ps - I already have Angostura and Peychaud's so I'm not looking for any old cocktail recipe that has bitters in it. However, if one of the old standbys like a Manhattan or Sazerac or something is recommended using this bitter in particular, I'm up for suggestions.)

Thanks in advance!

Mar 15, 2009
TimeMachine in Spirits

Speaking of weird knife phenomena...

I think you are right. Upon inspection, the damascus-looking part of the blade is only in the outer layer of the metal; the inner core (which is tapered into the cutting edge) does not have the striations.

I still haven't sent them back though I've been told that Shun will resharpen for free (minus postage).

Feb 04, 2009
TimeMachine in Cookware

Halving a bread maker recipe?

I have a normal bread maker but the normal loaf is really big for us, takes us more than a couple of days to eat and by that time it's dry and crumbly and bleah. Would it be possible to just half the recipe and cut down on the baking time? Do I need to adjust ingredient ratios? How much do I need to cut down the baking time?

Here's the full recipe: (whole wheat bread)
4 2/3 cup wwflour
2 teas. salt
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 5/8 cup water (I always add a few tablespoons more during the knead cycle)

Baking time is 65 minutes. I generally take the full loaf out at 55 minutes though.

Thanks!

Jan 22, 2009
TimeMachine in Home Cooking

Cognac and the classic cocktail- The Sidecar

I go with two parts strong, one part sour, one part sweet for this one. I love sidecars.

Oct 14, 2008
TimeMachine in Spirits

Who knew homemade tortillas were so easy (and addictive)?

I used to make flour tortillas nearly every day when we lived on a boat (I didn't have an oven to bake bread). I found that letting the dough sit for ~4-5 hours before rolling/cooking made the tortillas taste the most like Baja tortillas (my standard of excellence). Letting it sit longer just makes it harder to roll out.

Oct 01, 2008
TimeMachine in Home Cooking

pupusa guidance

You could try making them with rice flour? Personally, I like the corn better but I grew to like the rice ones (and I can't eat corn anymore). I made them with just rice flour and water (plus a bit of salt) and never had them fall apart. If there is any trick, it is to be sure the fillings are about the same consistency as the pastry; this makes it easy to mold and flatten. The only way I've screwed them up was by not cooking them long enough (the edges get that grainy raw bland flavor). Also, I never minded when the cheese cracked and ran out during cooking as it would fry crispy--yum. I also cook them on a dry but seasoned skillet (no grease).

The following link is to my blog posting about El Salvadorian pupusas and a recipe:
http://sv-timemachine.net/2006/11/let...

Aug 20, 2008
TimeMachine in Home Cooking

Things I ate/drank in college that I will never eat again

Hear hear on the Carlo Rossi. I can't even look at an empty bottle without a shudder.

My roommate's older sister visited once and left us with two unopened cans of Slim Fast (chocolate flavor). We felt the shakes et al. were somewhat lacking and ended up consuming the tins in the form of Slim Fast peanut butter balls (rolled in green colored cake sugar for fanciness' sake--where the green sugar came from I'll never know). We could never get visitors to try them but they weren't so bad.

Also free three-day old salt bagels the local shop gave away after 10pm. The salt bagels, naturally, were the ones that kept the best and I ate a lot of the things.

I had some of those Food Not Bombs mystery stews..

Aug 20, 2008
TimeMachine in General Topics

Cork Cutting Boards-Anyone Tried?

No, all of mine are typical boards. Is it special?

Jul 26, 2008
TimeMachine in Cookware

Whole Wheat Bread Consistency (need help!)

Thanks for all the links and tips everyone. I'm going to make it again tomorrow and we'll see how it goes.

One more question: Between the two of us, it takes us a few days to eat the large loaf so I'm thinking of splitting the dough for now and later. If I cut the dough in half after I kneaded it the first time (at the step right before the first rise) and froze it, do I just thaw it later, let it rise, and then resume kneading etc. as usual? Is there any special trick to freezing dough? Or even refrigerating it--how long can it go in the fridge before dying?

thanks again,
c

Jul 02, 2008
TimeMachine in Home Cooking

Whole Wheat Bread Consistency (need help!)

Hmm. So do you think if I made the dough as wet as possible before kneading it might help, and maybe even knead more the second time around?

Jul 01, 2008
TimeMachine in Home Cooking

Whole Wheat Bread Consistency (need help!)

I have been making whole wheat bread lately (4c ww flour, 1c white flour, 1T salt, 1T yeast, various herbs, water) and while it is good especially when fresh, it is not exactly what I am trying for. It turns out dryish (probably because I always bake it a little too long--my recipe just says until 'golden brown on top' and this usually takes ~35 minutes but it's always a little bit more done than I wanted, sigh) and an even dryish crumbly texture, not chewy.

I was wondering if there is a trick to making chewy bread or if it is a recipe tweak. My method is to mix ingredients into a fairly sticky but kneadable blob. Knead maybe five minutes, let rise to 2x size, knead again maybe 3-5 minutes, rise to bake size, and bake. Shapewise, I let it go into a round (no pan) loaf.

What am I doing wrong? Do I have to use only white flour if I want chewy? Do I just need to bake it less? Do I need to knead it more or less? (I honestly don't know what kneading it twice does for it--I just had a recipe long ago and it said to knead twice.) Is it possible to get the sort of bread that has vacant spots--bubbles--inside (like you see in French bread) using whole wheat flour?

Thanks for any advice!
-cheyenne

Jul 01, 2008
TimeMachine in Home Cooking

Cork Cutting Boards-Anyone Tried?

I have several mesquite boards--one I made from a scrap of board I pulled out of a woodpile and two others that my father in law made for me and I LOVE THEM. They are not only the most beautiful things ever, they feel good against the knife (I have a problem with some white cutting board hardwoods and bamboo being too hard feeling--gives me that chalkboard/fingernail feeling) but they don't scratch up in a bad way with use.

If I ever have a house of my own, I want to make the countertops mesquite. Definitely.

Jun 18, 2008
TimeMachine in Cookware

Hand hammered woks

To me, both the wok above and the seasoned one linked below look to be hammered for looks only and not actually formed by hammering. This wok appears smooth and has an even matte finish, and the hammer marks are evenly spaced and shiny (hammering metal creates a shiny mark), more like a decorative pattern. It is possible that the wok was formed by hammering and the craftsman fully planished out all hammer marks, created a matte finish (sanding/sandblasting or whatever), THEN put decorative hammer marks back into the metal (this seems unlikely). More than likely, I would think that the wok was stamped into shape, given a matte finish, then given hammer marks as a final step. Technically I guess you could say it is a 'hammered wok.' However, to actually form a piece of metal by hammering, you have to hammer the HELL out of it and nice neat evenly spaced marks are not what you get.

Here's a photo of a wok that looks like it was formed by hammering:
http://ninecooks.typepad.com/photos/u...

It is possible that the shiny hammer marks perform some function, but I'm not a wok-cooking expert.

Jun 11, 2008
TimeMachine in Cookware

Latest addiction

That sounds really good--particularly the quick part.. :) Do you think this is something that raisins might be added to? When you have time. could you post your recipe?

Apr 15, 2008
TimeMachine in General Topics

Anyone have a minimalist kitchen?

I lived on a small sailboat for 18+ months and cooked quite well in my teeny galley. Floor space was 6 square feet, counters on either side were just under 2x3 feet; one side included a small pump sink and the other, a two-burner alcohol stove (and no refrigeration). I maximized counter workable area by fitting cutting boards over the sink hole and stove. Essentials were a good set of knives (stored flat in a thin wooden rack against the wall), good cutting boards (doubled as serving dishes), cast iron griddle for making tortillas, flatbread, naan, toast, etc., and my mixing bowls nested, pans nested. I also had a pressure cooker.

My kitchen now is not much bigger but I don't have that much stuff. My appliances are a coffee grinder, an immersion blender, sink, small fridge, and 4-burner stove with oven. The only things on my counter (ahem, under ideal circumstances, that is) are a fruit bowl (a colander actually), can with utensils, and dishrack. All pans hang over the stove and all knives are stored flat on the wall.

Apr 06, 2008
TimeMachine in Cookware

Spicy, Salty or Otherwise Savory Drinks.

Our friends had an old bartender's guide and I remember there were a number of drinks that included beef broth as an ingredient. "Bloody Bull" and "Bull Shot" are a couple.

Egg nogs are also not very sweet if you make them from scratch (may not be the not-sweet you are looking for though).

Mar 30, 2008
TimeMachine in Spirits

Debbie Meyer green bags.

My mother in law dropped a bunch of veggies off with us on her way out for a vacation and they were in green translucent plastic bags. She told us she had purchased the bags from Market of Choice and not to toss them when we ate the vegetables. Of course we were totally skeptical but after we watched a bunch of cilantro (NOTORIOUS for turning to mush in no time in my experience) stay perfectly fresh and non-wilty for well over a week (and this on top of however long it may have been languishing in my mother in law's refrigerator), we were believers.

So yeah, in spite of myself (like, what-EV, they're just bags!), i think they totally work. I don't know why or how though.

Mar 20, 2008
TimeMachine in Cookware

Gimlet ratio?

I know Rose's is the accepted way of making a gimlet but I find the drink too bland. I make a gimlet using equal parts freshly squeezed lime juice to gin and sugar. Add enough sugar to the lime juice to taste good, add the gin, shake with ice, & serve up.

Mar 17, 2008
TimeMachine in Spirits

Good food in La Paz and surrounding area?

We spent some time in La Paz in 2005/2006; here's a link to my blog food report (sorry for the link--I'm typing one-handed). In summary, La Fuente (ice cream), arrachera tacos or pozole at Rancho Viejo, and fish tacos from the "elaborate" taco stand mentioned are the big recs. I think the asada stand I mention as being my favorite is no longer there sadly. The market is fun too; food there is usually quite good and filling but not standout great.

Link: http://sv-timemachine.net/2006/01/the...

Mar 17, 2008
TimeMachine in Mexico

Making home-made absinthe

JMF is right; you have to have a still if you intend to make it drinkable. We made it once by soaking 151 rum with all the essential herbs and while it was a lovely olive green, it was VILE in taste. That didn't prevent us from trying to drink an oz or two in hopes of seeing the 'green fairy' and I must say that the dizzy/stoned feeling you get was not remotely worth the evil hangover I had the next morning. The worst hangover in my life--not that I've had all that many but I doubt I could top this one if I tried.

Not to be daunted, we did more research and tried again. This time we made a fresh batch using distilled alcohol (very high proof although I can't remember exactly what the % was), soaked with all the herbs, and finally distilled it. This of course creates a clean clear liquor (i.e., the green is removed in the distilling process). The flavor was far more refined than the previous tincture and retained the anise very well; it was really quite tasty and intensely flavored. We soaked a couple of mint tea bags in the liquor to give it back a green tint.

We then ran the original 151-blend through the distiller and it was also tasty and drinkable.

Mar 14, 2008
TimeMachine in Spirits

ever had "green" oranges from Latin America?

That's the same thing as the "Philippine orange," Panama orange, China orange, etc. etc. (!) It seem to have about a million names. They are good but no substitution for a lime when you need a lime...

Feb 01, 2008
TimeMachine in General Topics

ever had "green" oranges from Latin America?

http://dipologcity.com/CALAMA~1_small...

Is this what you were looking for? We ate them in Panama where the were called 'mandarin limes.' Calamansi (Citrofortunella mitis) are also known as Chinese orange, Philipine orange, Panama orange, or golden lime. We rarely even saw Persian limes, only these.

Feb 01, 2008
TimeMachine in General Topics

Cochinita Pibil (split from LA board)

I have made this recipe: http://starchefs.com/features/fathers...

The only changes I made were to cook it in a dutch oven (didn't have banana leaves on hand). It was quite awesome; however, it did not taste like the cochinita pibil we ate in the yucatan... oh well.

The hands-down absolute best CP we ate anywhere was in the town right near Chichen Itza ruins (Piste I think it's called). We got up super early before walking to the ruins and wandered through town to see if there was any early food to be had. In the 'market' area across from the main grocery/tienda (where the road splits) was a guy with a food stand and a huge crowd around him. He had a whole roasted pig in a metal box and was selling it in to-go bags, tortas, tacos, etc. We got tortas and were able to specify which parts of the pig we wanted (for Joshua, a bit of everything; for me, "pura carne por favor"). It was one of the best things we ate in our 6 months in Mexico.

Jan 06, 2008
TimeMachine in Home Cooking

Speaking of weird knife phenomena...

Hmm. I hadn't thought of contacting Shun (I'm back in the US now). My plan was only to 'fix' the edges by just having them professionally ground/resharpened but the local knife stop guy turned me off. This seems silly perhaps but I would not want to trade my 'old' knives in for new ones even if they were identical, if that makes sense. Sentimental I guess. Plus, they still hold a great edge and sharpen nicely--essentially they are as good as new, minus the cosmetic issue.. I suppose I could email Shun to see if they had ever seen or gotten any returns with similar issues to my knives and had any suggestions. I also fear that I'll be 'accused' (well, that's putting it strongly) of mistreating them when I'm more neurotic about taking care of them than most people I know. Well, discounting the whole tropical boat experience :)

Dec 31, 2007
TimeMachine in Cookware

Speaking of weird knife phenomena...

I might have had the same issue with my Shun knives. They have both turned almost serrated over the past couple of years with an even 'chipping' effect running along the blade. I sharpen them frequently using a spyderco sharpener and stored them in a wooden rack. I also happened to be living on a boat in the tropics for 2 years and so I had just chalked it up to another victim of extreme corrosion.

However, a friend of mine who is fanatical about old knives and swords said that he thought it was due to the damascus-type steel and the way it wore naturally. He said that the layers of steel tended to wear or corrode at different rates and that you are left with an even (or mostly even) 'serrated' effect.

I have not been able to find much information on this though and when I mentioned it to a local high-end knife shop where I thought about bringing the knives to be re-edged professionally, he said I had probably been chopping rocks with the knives or something, that he had never heard of such a thing happening. I haven't had them 'professionally' sharpened yet needless to say.

I got over it basically and continue to use them daily, sharpening as usual on my own and they work great as always I think. Here's a link to what the edges look like: http://sv-timemachine.net/?p=308 (the close-ups of the knife edges are at the bottom of the post).

Dec 29, 2007
TimeMachine in Cookware

I'm 8 wks. pregnant and HATE FOOD. :) Need help...

The only thing I would add to the above (I ate a lot of Triscuit crackers and apples during my first tri) is to be careful when you take your prenatal vitamin (if you are taking one). Because morning sickness made me feel like I couldn't eat, I never had a full stomach to pad the vitamin and it always made me super nauseas. I could only take it at night right before I went to sleep.

Keeping just a little food in my stomach at all times also was immensely helpful.

I hear a lot of people say that sucking on tart candies helps with the morning sickness but I never tried it. Having morning sickness is a lot like being seasick (which I happen to have A LOT of experience with) and sucking on chewy ginger candies was often about all I could keep in me at times. Drinking hot water also helped some for me.

Yay! Good luck. My morning sickness subsided at around 15 weeks and I started feeling GREAT. I'm 35 weeks now and still have some of the food aversions I acquired during that first tri though; hopefully this too will go away completely once the baby is out.

Dec 15, 2007
TimeMachine in General Topics

Help with Chocolate Fudge Recipe (crystallized/traditional)

So I made peanut butter fudge with the above recipe I mentioned and it didn't turn out. The recipe said to boil the sugar and milk to soft ball (I went to 236-237 degrees), then add the remaining ingredients (peanut butter, butter, vanilla) and stir until it 'sets.'

I did this and began to stir. And stir. And half an hour later we had traded back on and off a million times and were still stirring and it still wasn't dull. So we continued until we couldn't hold the pan still anymore and transferred it to the dish and stirred it in the baking dish with smaller spoons (smaller area to stir) and kept at it until it was pretty much cold. Smoothed it out and chilled it in the refrigerator for a few hours. We just checked it and it still is the same consistency as it was when we stopped stirring. Grainy and soft so that it won't really cut into pieces.

Now I have a huge mass of the stuff that is sort of an experimental disaster. I can't send it as gifts and I'm not supposed to even be eating peanuts for the next few months! (I had to taste it a little though..) Argh.

Did I not heat it high enough? Or stir it too much? Or stir it too soon (the recipe said to begin stirring immediately but the chocolate fudge recipes all say to wait to touch it until it hits 110-120 degrees)? (I guess I found the temperamental type fudge.)

Dec 13, 2007
TimeMachine in Home Cooking

Help with Chocolate Fudge Recipe (crystallized/traditional)

I would love a recipe/instructions for corn-free marshmallows. I am intolerant, not allergic like you, but still have to be pretty vigilant about ingredient-reading or else I'll ruin my day. I have NEVER seen a marshmallow out there that did not contain corn syrup--even the fancy schmancy individually wrapped gourmet types you see in high-end groceries. I have also looked everywhere for confectioner's sugar and never found a corn-free version; I just blend my own (but it never gets fine enough--always a bit gritty--and my poor blender always sounds like it is about to die by the end of it, not to mention the entire apartment begins to smell like ozone). What is the brand of wheat-starch sugar? I really used to love rice krispy treats! The pumpkin spice marshmallows sound awesome.

Anyway, I am also going to make the peanut butter fudge (my personal favorite flavor). My grandmother used to make a simple kind and it was freaking awesome. She never used a thermometer but would take a little spoonful and whip it up against the side of a ceramic dish to test for consistency. Somehow she died without anyone managing to get the recipe from her (and I was too young to pester her for it myself). So I did a bunch of internetting and came up with the following recipe, which sounds about like what she used:
1 1/3 c milk
2 lbs brown sugar
1/4 c butter
1 1/2 c peanut butter
1 tspn vanilla extract
** combine milk & sugar and do the soft-ball routine; add remaining ingredients and mix evenly before pouring into the dish to set.

(It makes a 9x13" pan's worth, by the way.) This recipe doesn't say anything about letting it cool to 110deg, but just to remove from heat, add the other ingredients, mix and pour to pan (quickly). Do you think the peanut butter makes the consistency be 'right' somehow or do you think it will turn out weird (gluey) if I don't cool/stir? I'm gathering from your recipe, you wait for 110deg and stir like crazy.

Dec 12, 2007
TimeMachine in Home Cooking

Help with Chocolate Fudge Recipe (crystallized/traditional)

Now it's finished and tasted. It's a bit crumbly (on the edges) but I think this has to do with my not getting it into the baking pan in time. Tastes pretty darned good and the consistency is very fudgey. It definitely has the crystallized structure but it is not grainy at all.

We started stirring it once it hit 110deg and both of were thinking it would never work because it was just so gooey and hard to deal with. We took turns until both arms hurt and then all of a sudden it just turned opaque. Joshua gave it a couple more swipes with the spoon and we tried to dump it into the pan. It was just one large chunk and we had to use tools to get it all out of the cooking pot. Then I mashed it down into the pan with my hands. We both were shocked at how fast it set; I don't know how people manage to get nuts mixed in there in time.

The only thing is that it is a little thin; meaning, I have it in a 9" square pan and when I cut it into 1" pieces, they are not 1" tall (oh woe!). So I might make a 1.5 batch next time.

Dec 12, 2007
TimeMachine in Home Cooking