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What to serve for Pre-Passover meal

This is always a very casual meal, not formally served. We usually have some combination of baked potatoes, yogurt, blintzes (frozen Passover ones from a package), veggies, string, cheese, etc. Everyone is always busy with cooking and other prep.

Apr 09, 2014
milklady in Kosher

Chocolate flourless cake for Passover

It sounds like you do not need the bakery to be kosher / kosher for Passover, that just flourless ingredients work. In that case, Sweet Adeline, Crixa and Masse's all have fantastic choices. My personal favorites are from Masse's.

Apr 09, 2014
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area

Trader Joe's YAY/NAY - March 2014 [OLD]

Oh yeah, I love this new mix. Great to mix it up from just a kale salad, but it works very well in applications like raw kale.

Mar 12, 2014
milklady in Chains

Breakfast / brunch in the Berkeley / Oakland area

I agree. 900 Grayson was great when it opened, and it is still great, but I am so bored that they haven't really changed the menu at all in years.

Mar 04, 2014
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area

Pot luck brunch

Homemade scones and lemon curd or jam. So impressive and quite inexpensive to make.

Feb 25, 2014
milklady in Home Cooking
1

Lunch near the Oakland Museum White Elephant Sale

I would recommend Taco Grill right near the Fruitvale BART station or Vulcan Café for Thai food off of E. 12 St.

Feb 19, 2014
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area

What are you baking these days? February 2014 edition! [Through February 28, 2014]

I had several gluten free folks around this weekend.

I made Alice Medrich's New Bittersweet Brownies, substituting King Arthur gluten free baking mix for the AP flour. I baked them in a sheet pan, then cut them into hearts and glazed them with a thin ganache for Valentine's Day. They were moist and rich, almost melted in your mouth.

I also made the Martha Stewart Chewy Chocolate Gingerbread cookies, but gluten free and standard. They were both fantastic. The gluten free ones were a little bit sandier in texture, but the guests were very impressed. Side by side comparisons (by those who tolerate gluten) were that that the standard ones were a bit better, but you would never know the difference if you were given a gluten-free cookie without being told.

Earlier this month I also made a no dairy chocolate cake with an almond milk ganache. I guess it's a month of adaptation!

Feb 18, 2014
milklady in Home Cooking

Berkeley Eat/Study/Seduction Spot

I think the Elmwood Café idea is a great one. I would also consider Local 123 on San Pablo at University.

Feb 10, 2014
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area

ISO Freeze ahead macaroni and cheese and other make-ahead Christmas dishes

I think that would be fine. I wouldn't push it further than that.

Dec 13, 2013
milklady in Home Cooking

ISO Freeze ahead macaroni and cheese and other make-ahead Christmas dishes

I make the sauce and cook the pasta per directions, assemble completely, then wrap with foil and freeze. I let it defrost in the fridge and then bake.

Dec 12, 2013
milklady in Home Cooking

Question about applying Edible Luster to cut out cookies

This is exactly what I was going to say! I would first decorate with royal icing. Once that's dry, then apply the luster dust with an extract.

Dec 11, 2013
milklady in Home Cooking

ISO Freeze ahead macaroni and cheese and other make-ahead Christmas dishes

I make and freeze Martha Stewart's mac and cheese regularly.

Most desserts freeze well.

Dec 11, 2013
milklady in Home Cooking

red or black currants

I think you can only get dried (or jellied) at this time of year. I remember being blown away the first time I saw them fresh at Berkeley Bowl one July - the only time I'd eaten them fresh was a summer I spent as a teenager in the Russian countryside, and it brought back amazing memories to have them at home.

Dec 05, 2013
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area

Food that will satisfy Indian vegetarians and American meat-eaters?

I am mostly vegetarian and am incredibly satisfied with their "hot plates" of amazing grilled veggies, mashed potatoes and salads. They also have additional items on their catering menus and lots of grains they can provide. I thought it would work well (and it has for my family when doing takeout for both vegetarians and meat eaters) to get giant trays of mashed potatoes, salads, grilled veggies, a vegetarian side and one or two trays of their grilled steak or chicken.

Nov 12, 2013
milklady in Los Angeles Area
1

Food that will satisfy Indian vegetarians and American meat-eaters?

I would look into catering from Tender Greens and bringing it to your home. I think that could meet everyone's needs and not be insanely expensive. You could supplement with cheese and crackers or something along those lines if you'd like.

Nov 11, 2013
milklady in Los Angeles Area

Chipotle New Tofu Sofritas Burrito. .

We've had it in the SF Bay Area for quite a while. I prefer it in a bowl than a burrito, but it is a great vegetarian choice. It is a bit too salty for my taste, but quite flavorful and filling.

Oct 30, 2013
milklady in Chains

New Mom's First meal out: Recommendations [Berkeley]

Comal would be perfect, as long as you can do 5:30.

Oct 30, 2013
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area

Pie - SF Dish of the Month October 2013

Oh wow, that is sad that they are no longer open at 9. However, they almost never have pie before 11...

Oct 23, 2013
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area

Advice for adding raspberry swirl to vanilla cake

I think you will have more success if you remove a portion of the batter and mix it with the raspberry jam. It will take on the flavor and most of the color, but the weights and textures will be more similar matched. Instead of swirling in just jam, swirl in the batter + jam mixture.

Oct 21, 2013
milklady in Home Cooking
1

Barrel House Tavern opens July 1 in Sausalito

I went to Barrel House with a group this weekend.

The setting is beautiful - having a drink on the back deck with the view of the Golden Gate Bridge is a quintessential Bay Area experience.

We were a party of nine, seated inside adjacent to a beautiful glassed in fireplace. At one point a busser burned himself on the fireplace, though, so I'm worried it's a safety concern!

The food was good, but not amazing. They brought some housemade onion crackers and an "apple salsa" when we were seated. The crackers were very flavorful, maybe even too oniony. The salsa just tasted like more onion to me.

I only tried a small part of the menu:
-Goat cheese donuts. This was described as a salad with goat cheese, raspberries and beets and small savory donuts. The salad part was true, but it came with two big (nearly the size of cake donuts from a donut shop), plus two or three donuts holes. The donuts were very simple fried dough with very little added flavor. A few bites had some goat cheese in them, but most were plan.
-Salmon with fig sauce, broccoli rabe and delicate squash - the salmon had a nice crispy skin. All the favors were good, but there was just a bite of fig and a bite of squash. Great dish, but easy to make at home.
-Sole with panko and anchovy. This was a nice delicate fish with a salty and tangy sauce. It came with some nice roasted broccoli and Tokyo turnips and onions. The fish was not nearly as crispy as it should have been.
-Crème brulee - exactly what you'd expect, super standard, nicely executed
-Chocolate bread pudding - I only ate a bite. It was served in a mason jar with ice cream and whipped cream on top. It was basically crumbled up bread pudding. I don't think that a jar is the best format for this dessert, but everyone thought it was cute.

Others at my table had dishes that I did not try - pork belly and swordfish with white beans (some thought it was very rich but fantastic, one was a bit underwhelmed), trout with olives and fingerlings (again, one thought it was fantastic, another thought it was just good), butternut squash risotto (seemed very good), spinach salad with fried oysters, chicken with mashed potatoes and bacon (gigantic portion, was told it was very flavorful), crab sliders (well liked), various beers and wines and housemade sodas (again served in mason jars).

Service was nice and accommodating. The server spent quite a while telling us about the restaurant, chef, etc. They happily split a few entrees. We pretty much shut the place down just after 10 pm. They ran out of a dessert (butterscotch pudding) after we'd ordered it, and also ran out of the salted caramel ice cream which was supposed to accompany the chocolate bread pudding (they subbed vanilla).

I would definitely return for the location and view, and the food is just fine as well.

Oct 21, 2013
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area

Sea Salt for homemade Caramels

I think Maldon flakes are ideal.

Oct 07, 2013
milklady in Home Cooking
1

THE One Best Place to Have Dinner in the East Bay?

I wouldn't choose Bay Wolf as "the one". I have never had a great meal there.
I love the idea of Pizzaiolo (though it's quite casual), Chez Panisse (upstairs or downstairs) or Plum.

Oct 01, 2013
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area

Favorite cheeses at TJs?

My family loves the "unexpected cheddar" which is a very flavorful somewhat crumbly cheddar/parmesan mix. The chevre is always a great value.

Sep 25, 2013
milklady in Chains

Cake in a Hurry

La Farine is very good. Masse's Pastries in North Berkeley is great - if you are flexible about flavor you will be successful, they always have some full sized cakes available. Crixa is also wonderful. Sweet Adeline makes great birthday cakes, but they don't usually have full sized ones ready to pick up.

Aug 31, 2013
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area

Help! Frosting with heavy cream and sour cream: Does it need to be refrigerated?

That's fine for less than a day. Rose Levy Beranbaum's recipes all have shelf life in and out of the refrigerator which I find very helpful.

Aug 29, 2013
milklady in General Topics

Looking for high-quality fruit platters that can be picked up at a grocery store

Any Whole Foods should be able to do this well.

Aug 22, 2013
milklady in Los Angeles Area

Directionally challenged...where to stop before ending in Inverness.

900 Grayson in Berkeley is right off the freeway and is great. It's not the most engaging neighborhood to walk around, though. (Bette's Oceanview Diner was also recommended, which is a great idea for a stroll and window shopping.)

Aug 22, 2013
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area

Yellow Plums Follow-up Question

This Alice Medrich recipe is fabulous and works great with pretty tart plums. http://orangette.blogspot.com/2010/10...

Aug 07, 2013
milklady in Home Cooking

White American Cheese - where to buy?

I think I've seen it at Target.

Aug 01, 2013
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area

Israeli white cheese (Gvina Levana) in Palo Alto?

I agree that gvina levana is somehow different from quark. They usually sell it at Oakland Kosher Foods - not exactly Palo Alto, I know...

Jul 11, 2013
milklady in San Francisco Bay Area