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location Maryland
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visits member for 3 years, 9 months
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American foodie (non-professional) of mixed italian / sicilian / basque / argentinean / british heritage; family from US northeast, but has lived in US mid-atlantic, US south, and western europe.


Mar
20
comment Do you heat the pan first, then add oil? Or put the oil in and heat up with the pan?
Um ... so that's a 'oil first' for cast iron, then?
Mar
14
comment Which salsa ingredient makes it taste like dirt?
When I think of ingredients that taste like dirt, I think of baby corn ... but that wouldn't likely be in salsa.
Mar
14
comment Making Roux when Flour is Missing
It's possible that what the roux is for might be more significant -- if you're making a gumbo where you need a really dark roux the options may be different than for a blonde roux.
Mar
14
comment How to make agar less brittle
I've gotten a softer agar, but I suspect it was because I did something wrong. (perhaps I didn't use enough? it was also sickeningly sweet, so it might've been the amount of sugar in it)
Mar
12
comment How to raise the setting and melting point of gelatin
but be careful if you're dealing with acids -- I found out the hard way that Agar won't set anything that's even slightly acidic. (ph < 6.8)
Mar
12
answered Is it okay to throw the food, collected in the mesh in the sink, down the drain, if it doesn't contain plastic?
Mar
12
comment Is it okay to throw the food, collected in the mesh in the sink, down the drain, if it doesn't contain plastic?
@SAJ14SAJ : I consider questions about proper disposing of waste to be on topic ... like the questions about fats down the drain.
Mar
11
awarded  Guru
Mar
11
comment How do I cook a chicken to make it really really really soft?
@Aaronut : near Washington, DC. the DelMarVa peninsula (delaware / maryland / virginia), just a little to the west, is rather dense in chicken farms. I can still regularly get bone in dark meat for $1-2/lb, deboned thighs for $2-3/lb ... boneless skinless breasts often go on sale for $2/lb or less. (about $3-4/lb the rest of the time, depending on where you shop). I assume it'd be even cheaper on the eastern shore, closer to where it's produced.
Mar
11
comment If I put peanuts in a coffee grinder, will I get peanut butter or peanut powder?
related : cooking.stackexchange.com/q/15549/67 ; cooking.stackexchange.com/q/41427/67
Mar
10
answered Making a carvable cake
Mar
10
reviewed Reject suggested edit on When to use a roux or a beurre manié
Mar
7
awarded  Good Answer
Mar
6
comment Why does my roast beef smell wonderful but tastes bland?
@Penny : I usually cut it into slabs, and let it soak in the juices for a bit. (assuming I didn't cook it 'til it shreds under its own weight ... which I prefer, but the folks I tend to cook for aren't fans of)
Mar
1
comment Secrets to making crystal clear gelatin?
I'll likely revisit this again ... the person who started the content this was for announced his retirement, but I'm trying to get it to be a competition like the Stanley Cup, where we get something that goes to whichever lab wins (I think the wins have been earth science / astrophysics / 2 x heliophysics / 2 x astrophysics ... no wins for planetary science) ... but the last 3 years (since I did the CME cake) have been hollow victories ... only two competitors each year, and one didn't have the level of effort put in as the winners.
Mar
1
comment Secrets to making crystal clear gelatin?
@rfusca : I suspect that the alcohol or oil in the flavoring may have been part of my problem with clouding (as I reduced the gelatin, but it still stayed similarly cloudy). As for the agar ... first batch was a little too jiggly for my liking, but also sickeningly sweet, so I added some lemon juice ... turns out agar won't set under 6.8 pH, so I completely ruined that batch and switched back to gelatin. Of course, the whole thing came out murky ... after almost a week of work, I ended up scraping the whole thing. (even tried to make it non-self supporting, but it might've been worse).
Feb
28
revised Meaning of the term 'tack' in bread making?
added language tag, ... removed the 'thanks'
Feb
28
answered Difference between Pancakes and “Kaiserschmarrn”?
Feb
28
comment Are there low-fat substitutes for shortening in baking?
Although you often can't remove all of the solid fat in pastry doughs, there are tricks that you can use to improve flakiness (eg, replacing water with vodka) that may allow you to then reduce the fat ... I've never tried it, though.
Feb
21
comment Can lettuce wraps be less messy?
What lettuce were you using? I like something like boston or butter lettuce for this sort of thing.