TexasIndia's Profile

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After Batali Bust, Arguments for and Against Tipping Out

I always assume the tip goes to the whole crew, not just the waiter. I assumed tipping out was always practiced. I'm shocked to learn it's not. I think I'll tip less now unless I find out its distributed to bus and other staff.

Mar 10, 2012
TexasIndia in Features

Visiting Chicago - Which Steakhouse?

Thanks for all the great suggestions. We've made reservations at Gibson's. I'm not sure what a W.R. Chicago cut is, but I'm going to try that per jf123's suggestion. We'll also split a side and dessert. I'm not crazy about huge portions. I'll let you know how we like it!

Thanks for the help!

Apr 29, 2008
TexasIndia in Chicago Area

Covered Apple cake

What are almond flakes? This looks really good.

Apr 29, 2008
TexasIndia in Recipes

Carrot, Leek, and Parsley Mash

I agree with coolgeek. I never peel carrots when I cook them.

Apr 29, 2008
TexasIndia in Recipes

Local Burger in Lawrence, KS

I agree. I love Free State. Their food is always well prepared, tasty and not over-priced. I tried Local Burger again recently and was disappointed again. The potatoes used to be good. They were greasy and not tasty. I paid close to $9 for burger and potatoes. I used to put barbecue sauce on the burger. Now they charge an extra $0.25 for the sauce. I don't think I'll go back. Too many other good places to eat in Lawrence.

Visiting Chicago - Which Steakhouse?

I'll be visiting Chicago soon and want to visit a steak place. The recommendations that I have from friends are:Gene and Georgetti's, Chicago Chop House, and Gibson Steak House. We'll be staying downtown, so don't want to go too far. I'd like to know which of these Chowhounds like or what you might like better. Thanks for your help?

Apr 24, 2008
TexasIndia in Chicago Area

Belong to a CSA (Community Shared Agriculture)? What can I expect from my membership?

Make sure you have lots of recipes for greens. I wasn't of big fan of turnip greens, kale, and chard before our CSA. Now I can't wait. I even buy more in the winter. One of my easy favorite ways to make any green is to saute with olive oil, add a few spices such as fenugreek or cumin, and toss with almost any kind of pasta.

Our CSA has 6 different farmers so we get a wide variety of anything that's grown with some choices every week. Still it's greens and lettuce in the spring. Lot's of tomatoes and squash in the late summer. I still have one butternut squash since November. It's nice to have some "keepers."

One piece of advice that I would add, find a friend or two to pick up your bag when you're out of town. You might even recruit a new member that way.

We've been members of Rolling Prairie for 4 years.They've been together for 15 years. Their website has some useful information about what to expect. http://www.rollingprairie.net/.

I used to have a large garden and grow a lot of different things. After kids went to college, it's hard to have a garden just for 2. This makes my like much easier.

Jan 21, 2008
TexasIndia in General Topics

Any Commments re Niloufer King's "My Bombay Kitchen"?

I respectfully would like to expand and clarify the biryani/pulao distinction. Biryani is layers of rice and meat or vegetables with onions and spices to make a gravy. It is usually cooked in the oven after the rice is parboiled. Pulao is the Indian version of pilaf (many spellings) of similar dishes from the middle east, north africa, India, Pakistan and Nepal. In pulao vegetables or spices are usually stir fried, then the rice is added and finally liquid. Most often pulao is cooked on top of the stove with water. Chicken stock and tomato are less traditional. In fact, I've rarely ever seen red pulao.

Jan 20, 2008
TexasIndia in Home Cooking

Kansas City - What should a Foodie not miss in 2008?

Lots of great ideas. I would add Lidia's brunch on Saturday or Sunday morning, especially in the summer when vegetables are freshest.

Krause's in Lawrence is a definitely the place to go in the area.

Ingredient in Lawrence is also a great new place.

Free State Brewery is offering a Brewer's Banquet on a few days in February. It fills up fast. You probably need to call now. Very intriguing food and beer pairings.

please, a definition of "authentic mexican"

I'll go through some of the things I've eaten in homes in Mexico. Some in the south (Michoacan) and some in the north (Coahuila). For lunch in middle class homes we usually ate 2-3 courses. First course was sopa. Sopa can be soup, pasta or rice course similar to Italian first course course concept. Second course is usually meat with a salad or vegetable, beans and tortillas. Tacos, burritos, tostadas are all tex/mex or us/mex. Although tamales are served at home and there are roadside snack places that serve something like a soft taco. For breakfast, Mexican rolls, fruit, fresh juice and sometimes sweet tamales with fruit filling. Supper is similar to lunch, but a smaller meal.

In the mountains in Michoacan, I stayed with another family. There weren't a lot of fresh fruits or vegetables. It's beans and tortillas three meals a day with some queso (white cheese). Making tortillas before every meal is work, but they are heavenly. Once or twice a week add a chicken or pig. In the summer, we'd pick berries and make a pudding.

In Morelia, there is a very small upstairs restuarant that serves the best, spiciest fish soup in the world. Sorry, I can't remember the name.

I don't want to get into the authentic, traditional debate, but the home cooking that I've had in Mexico is a very distant relative to Taco Bell or most Mexican restaurants. A restaurant with carne guisado might come closer to "home" cooking than one that just serves tacos, etc. Most dishes aren't that spicy, but some like the fish soup are!

Restaurants in Mexico, especially in tourist areas, serve some things that are closer to tex/mex. Must be to please the tourist.

I think that Ed's post on the restuarants is right on.

Finally - I'd like to note to paulj. That New Mexico is not part of Mexico, and New Mexican food isn't very much like Mexico food. Although some of it comes closer. I don't want to pick on Paul, but I read recently that 60% of people in the U.S. thought that New Mexico was part of Mexico.

Jul 01, 2007
TexasIndia in General Topics

Do Italians put chicken on pasta?

Italians combine meat and pasta, but they don't put big slabs of chicken (or other meats) on top of pasta. Traditional pasta dishes do contain chopped up pieces of chicken, vegetables, chicken livers, shrimp, beans or anything else. Those are all complements and blend with the pasta. They don't usually have pasta as the primary dish in a meal, but rather have a much smaller serving than is typical in the US as a first course.

I think the chicken slab on top of the pasta was invented to satisfy American's love of pasta and feeling that they have to have some meat to eat. Stick the two together, you've got a main course. Sell them as two courses and Americans won't buy them.

Italians are constantly coming up with new combinations, and their tastes are changing also. Not as much time for 3-4 course meals any more. Still pasta with chicken slabs aren't traditional.

Jun 30, 2007
TexasIndia in General Topics

Visiting St. Louis. Want Italian Recommendations

Thanks for all the recommendations. We ended up at Trattoria Marcella. It was good, not great. We had a great time and some things on our list for our next visit.

I had steak in a balsamic vinegar sauce. My daughter loved it. I thought it had a little too much vinegar. My daughter loved her Rigatoni. I thought it seemed a little plain. My husband had another beef dish that was good, but not memorable. We all had the special chopped salad. Again, it was good, not great.

I think Lidia's in KC is much better with similar prices and better space. Next time we're in StL, we'll try Tony's or another from your suggestions.

Moxie's is still our favorite St. Louis restaurant.

The wine was good and a good value, a 2002 Avignonesi Rosso

should I subscribe to Cooks Illustrated?

I've been a print subscriber for years. I think reading about the process to be the most valuable part. You don't get that anywhere else. I've been a recipe tester also. It's fun to do that occasionally and see how they develop recipes and instructions.

They definately made Thanksgiving better with detailed brining instructions for turkeys. I don't like their approach to ethnic foods - especially Indian. They are very "Americanized and bland." However, that's not a big focus for them.

Jun 29, 2007
TexasIndia in Food Media & News

Visiting St. Louis. Want Italian Recommendations

I've visited St. Louis fairly often, but never had Italian there. I'm looking for some recommendations about the best food. Ambiance doesn't matter that much.

Local Burger in Lawrence, KS

I think they have gotten better. I don't like the Elk or Bison Burgers, but they have the best veggie burgers anywhere. I also like the combo plate which is a choice of three sides. Most of the sides are pretty interesting. Potatoes are ok.

If you haven't tried the veggie burger, go back and give it a try.