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Waterless cookware

Waterless is not totally waterless. You wash the vegetables and do not dry them. Cookware that is "waterless" has some sort of design that causes the lid to adhere very tightly to the pan. When in this state, you can't get the lid off. I guess it is steaming, but it's easier and I think it's quicker... more like pressure cooking, I guess. I had heavy duty pans in the 60s that were relatively expensive. I still have Ecko waterless cookware from the 60s, as well. These were less expensive, have a copper core, and I have been using them all these years. The trick to the waterless, is that you heat them on medium, then when the lid twirls effortlessly, you reduce the heat to low and then it seals. I have recently ruined the three-quart and I do not see that I can replace it for under $200.00. I never like cabbage until I had it cooked in the waterless cookware when I was 19.

Oct 28, 2014
caseycm in Cookware

Need dining recommendations for North Coast trip.

Thanks. I did see somewhere on this board about Brick & Fire. We're definitely going one night to Moonstone Grill and thanks for the recommend for Beachcomber. I have no idea where we'll eat on the very long trip up.

Aug 08, 2013
caseycm in California

Searching for deep-pit BBQ

Growing up in Arizona, this was the type of BBQ served at every event. Always beef, tender, shredded, in sauce. I haven't had it in years, but have been talking about it lately. I'd like to taste it again too, but so far, looking on this thread, not seeing anything too hopeful. Thanks for posing the question.
Hey, if you can get to Twain Harte by the 17th, they'll be doing it.

Aug 05, 2013
caseycm in California

Need dining recommendations for North Coast trip.

A friend and I are heading to Humboldt County on Friday, staying in
Trinidad. In one direction, we will go Hwy 5 to Redding, then 299 to the coast. The other direction, we will go 1/101. Any not-to-miss eating places you can recommend? Thanks.

Aug 05, 2013
caseycm in California

Wading through South Bay's great Indian restaurants

I like the Menu in Mountain View, 2700 W. El Camino. (At Palo Alto border.)
Attractive setting, organic food, nice wine bar in back, nice owner, and good food, in my opinion. The lunch buffet is tasty, and they change the offerings daily. (I know there are some who are not fans of a buffet, but their offerings are fresh, varied, an not greasy.) I like it better than Amber, however, I do love Amber Cafe. Their veggie Thali is just right.

Costco food finds - 4th quarter 2012

The Fra'Mani turkey meatloaf is delicious ! The package contains two separately wrapped loafs, which is convenient. Each loaf is normal size. I could eat the whole thing myself in one sitting, but I am not going to try it. Good for sandwiches the next day too. It has a small amount of marinara sauce on it, but I augment that with more pasta sauce and also pasta, natch. It freezes well too, and can be microwaved or oven baked.

Oct 16, 2012
caseycm in Chains

Chowdown at Zen Peninsula : Report

Hi All,
I was part of the Chow-Down crowd at Zen restaurant last night. It was my first Chow-Down, and I hope after these comments, I won't be taken off the invitee list, because I enjoyed myself very much. I loved meeting the group and discussing food minutiae ad-nauseum, which is my very favorite past-time and which bores most of my friends. However, in all honesty, apart from the company, I would've enjoyed Panda Express more. The two pork appetizers were good; the marinated platter yielded about two tiny bites for me, after disposing of bones and gristle. The kabocha fries were tasty and not greasy, and the scallop egg dish was flavorful enough for my tastes. I didn't miss the shrimp paste on the braised lettuce, since I'd not had that before, and to have some greenery was refreshing. The sea bass was overcooked, and too salty (as mentioned), and the stuffed chicken would've been good if advertised as sticky rice with not crisp skin and no discernible chicken meat. It was not worth the price by a long-shot. Although I liked some of the dishes, there was nothing with the Wow-Factor that would make me return to this restaurant.

Special thanks to Vincent who explained the intricacies of the dishes and how they Should've been prepared and presented. Please, don't fire me from ChowHound... I had a great time !

Cloudy Iced Tea

I found this thread because I am having cloudy tea too and will try the "letting the tea cool down before refrigerating." But, I think Candy is correct; I usually buy Peet's Summertime tea to make my ice tea. Not only is it delicious, never tannic, it is never cloudy.

May 24, 2012
caseycm in General Topics

Interesting restaurants in the Menlo Park/Palo Alto area?

Anatolian Kitchen in California Ave. area of Palo Alto is very good. I've not been to Turkey, but those who have say it's authentic. I just know it's delicious, reasonably priced, and the owner and his chef-brother are super nice and accommodating. It's my favorite neighborhood restaurant now. It's on Birch, between Cambridge and California Ave.

ny foodie moving to peninsula. looking for best food events big or small... need shopping sugestions.

I second the request to know where on the Peninsula you are living before putting in my two cents. There must be hundreds of quality food purveyors. I second the CSA idea that somebody posted, as I too did Two Small Farms for several years. Farm Fresh to You is another one that is more flexible.

Trader Joe's Yea/Nay thread - 1st quarter 2011 [old]

Yay to the frozen mini-croissants. They are the next best thing to having them in France.

Yay to their boxed cake mixes. The ones I've tried can be made in a flash and are delicious. They are good to keep on hand in case somebody says they are coming over and you only have a few minutes to whip something up. The Vanilla Cake is my favorite, but the Ginger Cake is wonderful also.I made a quick and easy ginger pear tatin, adding the box mix to the caramelized pears, and it came our perfectly. The Chocolate Truffle Brownie mix is oh so chocolaty, and the banana bread mix is like made from scratch -- esp. if you add your own walnuts and some fresh banana.
For me, Nay to any of their fresh meats. I've tried several, and have been, at the least, disappointed and sometimes just have to throw it out. Costco meat is far superior, IMHO.
Nay to their frozen chicken tenders. They had no flavor whatsoever. I'm spoiled by eating fresh organic and free-range chicken.

Jan 16, 2011
caseycm in Chains

Newbie to SF/Chinatown

On the cusp of China Town, City View is an excellent Dim Sum place. (It's at 22 Commercial between Kearny St & Montgomery St. ) A Chinese friend took me there. It's the type (like Yank Sing) where there is calm, with good service, and one is able to find out what is in the Dim Sum. There are several reviews of it in Chowhound. Here is one:

City View Restaurant
662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

Yank Sing
49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

Baume, disappointing

Thank you for this. I live very near Baume and had been wanting to try it. I don't think so. I don't mind paying lots of money for small quantities when they are spectacular, but this does not sound good. Again, thanks for the heads-up.

GOOD Cuban or Jamaican Restaurants in SF/East Bay? Do they exist?

Versailles is mediocre, in my opinion, but when I lived in LA many years ago the best Cuban places were downtown somewhere and they were really good. I went there with Cubans. I've never found good Cuban food up here, and I have a Cuban friend here who hasn't found one either. He does sort of like Los Cubanos on Almaden in downtown San Jose.
But, his mother is here now from Cuba, so I think the best is at his house.

Los Cubanos Restaurant
22 N Almaden Ave, San Jose, CA 95110

Substitute for alcohol on fruitcake?

I have made fruitcake at xmas for the last 30 years. Don't laugh. It's a Food & Wine recipe, and it's delicious. I have quite a following. I brush the fruitcake with rum and brandy every three days until ready to give away. I make one without alcohol for a cousin who does not drink. It's probably dry and unappealing, but they say they like it. Can somebody recommend another liquid or substance I could brush the fruitcake with to keep it moist and flavorful? I thought maybe of apple juice, but might make it too apple-y. The main ingredient in the cake for moisture is applesauce with honey and molasses. Thank you.

Dec 02, 2010
caseycm in Home Cooking

Eating out in San Jose

Hi. I'm surprised more people haven't jumped on this to answer you. I found this topic where people have given some recommendations for somebody from out of town. I'm not sure how far you are willing to drive. I could give you more from my experience. Maybe you've already come and gone from San Jose area

Eating out in San Jose

To experience one of our favorite cuisines here in the Bay Area, go to Vung Tao for Vietnamese. In my opinion, and in the opinion of many Vietnamese, it's the best in San Jose city proper.

Please recommend intimate cooking classes

Sur La Table cooking classes are almost all hands-on. Very few are demo only. You can also book private classes at Sur La Table. I am most familiar with the Palo Alto one. You can email the Culinary staff at whichever is most convenient for you by going to and finding the cooking classes site most convenient. I can also recommend Steve Cortez for private cooking classes in many different cuisines. You can reach him at I helped him with a private tamale class at xmas and it was excellent.

Arya Global Cuisine in Cupertino

Hi Melanie,
I assume you have eaten at Shalizaar in Belmont. How would you compare these two. I have heard Shalizaar is the best Persian in the area.

Chinese buffet in South Bay

Is there a good Asian buffet in San Jose, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, etc? Besides Todai, which is expensive. I've tried several, and I thought Yummy and Super Buffet were pretty good, but all the online reviews I find of any Chinese buffet are horrible, ranging from so-so to "stay away if you don't want diarrhea." Thank you.

Iberia ... Menlo Park

Cascal in Mountain View had good Spanish food. At least it did when I ate there some years ago. All the food we had there was delicious, and the Paella was a one-person size, which was great. Maybe somebody has an update on that place

Iberia ... Menlo Park

Let me give a Dec. 2008 update in hopes of saving other poor suckers from going to this restaurant. I've lived in the area for 26 years and had wanted to try this restaurant for as long as it has been open -- in both locations. Well, finally did. As noted above, the service stinks. I would've walked out after the first 10 minutes too, but I was with somebody who seemed to be irritated with my irritation at the unbelievably bad (nonexistent) service. The "server" made no effort to recommend anything to go with my Fino Sherry (finally ordered after trying to find a server for afore-mentioned 10 minutes) ,so no tapas as it seemed that although they were labeled small plates, they were probably bigger than a little tapas sort of thing I would've liked to have with my glass of sherry. Again, my dining companion didn't seem interested in looking through the list and expressing a desire to share any of the small plates. The food was really ho-hum. The Paella was pretty greasy. And, as mentioned, the real kicker was the 19% service charge !!! I have never seen this for a party of two and I am irritated at anything over 15% when added for groups. We should've refused to pay it. I would never, ever go back here.

Personal chef for vegetarians?

Thank you Melanie. My friend is checking out the web site. Looks promising.

Personal chef for vegetarians?

A friend of mine is looking for someone to prepare vegetarian meals for their family. I believe there are a lot of services in the Bay Area for various types of personal "chef-ing." He lives in San Jose. Does anybody have any recommendations?

Looking for LA style mexican in SF

I found this thread really interesting. Everybody from LA knows exactly what you are asking and the others don't. I appreciate the appends from those who do, and I'll sure check out the recommendations. I've lived here 25 years and still say the same thing about missing LA (and Arizona) Mexican food. I usually stop at King City when I drive South where I can find what I miss. It really doesn't make much sense that it wouldn't be here; I just never found it. Like others who posted, I was appalled the first time I was served a pre-fab taco shell at Trini's in South San Jose? I asked another LA transplant, a Mexican-American, where is there good Mexican food. He said Sinaloa in Morgan Hill was as close as we could get. In those days, it was really funky, with Mom and maybe Grandmom, in the kitchen and they did know how to fry up a taco shell. It's since gone fancy, moved to downtown, and has lost its funk, but it's still a bit like the LA style. Oh, there is a really good place that might come close on California Avenue in Palo Alto, called La Taqueria Azteca, in Antonio's Nut House, which serves about the best I've had up here in all these years.

Meeting Friend SJ area -- need Steak and Seafood Place

I live a couple of blocks from Sundance, and I second the recommendation. Although I've lived in Palo Alto 25 years, I had never eaten there until last year. The steaks and prime rib are outstanding, as are the seafood choices. The restaurant has kept up with the times and offers both the classics and the nouveau. Good martinis and wine selection too.

The best Chilean empanadas (and Chilean in general)

I recently ate at a fabulous Chilean restaurant (IMHO) in Manhattan, on 46th Street between 8th and 9th:
371 W 46th St
New York, NY 10036
(212) 956-3055

We first stopped between a how and dinner elsewhere and enjoyed honey-dew melon Sangria--one of the best drinks I have ever had. Made with Pisco, simple syrup, honeydew melon, and chardonnay (Chilean of course). The hospitable owner, the attractive decor, and the interesting menu that we returned the next Tuesday before another show. Everything we had was delicious, and the service was excellent. They do have empenadas (see menu at website), but we did not have them.

Jul 16, 2007
caseycm in Manhattan

Alemany Farmers Market: Chilean Empanadas and All Star Tamales

I ate at Pomaire, on 46th St. between 8th and 9th.
Everything we had was muy bueno.
I will post on your new "Best" topic as well.


Any way to email a chow hound?

Hi Melanie,
You're the one I wanted to get in touch with. Ironic, eh? I wanted to ask you if you remembered me from all those years ago through the Compuserve forum, and I wanted to discuss with you offline about Chow Hound involvement. I still have the menu from the After Zap at Yank Sing. I'd love to "meet up" with you sometime.

Jul 16, 2007
caseycm in Site Talk

Alemany Farmers Market: Chilean Empanadas and All Star Tamales

Yes, "pebre."