A good day for cooking.

Made macaroni and cheese for dinner today; have never been able to successfully make a smaller, “limited leftovers” version without it either growing to a larger portion or turning into a disaster, but I got it right today… Great way to use some otherwise over-sharp, slightly bitter Edam. Add pecorino and a sharp vt. cheddar, and … yum. About a Wonder if Nadia will like the leftovers tomorrow.
Continue reading “A good day for cooking.”

My weird dietary habits

Things I don’t eat
1) Mushrooms or other “edible” fungi. Things that are that closely related to the gunk that grows on your feet are not food! (Yeast, used as a leavening or fermenting agent is fine. Marmite is probably out.)

2) Shellfish, worms, bugs, or other invertebrates. “Ewww, bugs!”

3) Most condiments
3a) Mayo or miracle whip is right out on anything.
3b) Non-honey mustard
3c) Most salad dressings. (Ranch or honey mustard is OK, as long as it’s not too thick and not mayo-based.)

4) Organ meats

5) Heads/claws/feet/hooves – and leaving those attached to otherwise yummy things makes them inedible until rectified.

6) Cuts where the bone-to-meat ratio is too high (ie, chicken wings, although good ribs are just low enough to qualify as food.)

7) Salmon, unless smoked.
7a) Any other fish, if prepared in a manner which leaves it “mushy.”

8 ) Sweet American cheese on a hamburger, unless it’s from a fast food place.

9) Diet sodas, except for Coke Zero.

10) Weird vegetables: artichokes, coliflower, eggplant, squash, pumpkin or anything else weird/gross looking or squash-like

11) Red onions.
11a) Other onions, if raw. (Raw non-red onions are OK on sandwiches and good on burgers, but are to be left on briefly for flavor and then removed before eating.)

12) Most non-wheat (whether whole or white) breads
12a) Regular “American” squishy loaves are really only good for toast or grilled cheese, too
12b) French-style loaves shouldn’t be squishy
12c) Whole-wheat bread shouldn’t taste sweetened.

13) Anything stir-fried

14) Coffee, or anything coffee flavored.

15) Anything except tea in hot black/green tea (although toasted rice is “tea” if it’s genmaicha)
15a) No sugar in iced tea unless there is a LOT of lemon, or it’s a sweetened milk tea
16b) No milk in tea except for the sweetened milk tea, ie from a boba place

16) Unsweatened “flavored” waters

17) Grapefruit or pomelo.

18) Un-pitted peaches, apricots or plums (although all three are yummy if pitted or if I’ve got a knife handy to do it myself.)

19) Solid tofu, or any tofu-based faux-meat. (Tofu or soy in things that are not faux-meat are fine if I can’t tell it’s there.)

(Previously posted on flyertalk OMNI, originally on Jun 18, 08; for those OMNI qualified, look for the “Your personal food rules” thread, which is particularly funny.)

Discovery of the day.

McDonalds’ Bacon Ranch Salad, which I’m occasionally eaten over the last couple of years, is just as good without dressing – the bacon and cheese basically work as dressing.

In fact, the amount of bacon and cheese on it may be a bit much without being masked by dressing, but it’s easy to pick around them when they get to be a bit much.

How to make bacon

Makin Bacon

my sisters got me a book on home meat-curing for my birthday, the simply, yet fancily-named Charcuterie. Beyond its appeal as a potential source of deliciousness, the book is stuffed full of great pencil drawings of one of my favorite subjects: meat preparation. Sausage, Prosciutto, Jamon Serrano, Saucisson Sec, and that staple of every Iowan’s diet, sweet, sweet bacon. Home-made bacon. Made … at home. By you. Holy. F-ing. Shit.

OMFG that looks tasty.

Making pizzas very seriously

Jeff Varasano’s Famous New York Pizza Recipe

Actually, that’s more like NY-Neapolitan, as this old-school stuff is not what most NYers know as pizza. NY pizza comes from neighborhood places and is in “plain” not “margarita”; real NY Pizza is best served as a reheated slice from a large pie, not fresh and ABSOLUTELY not as a personal-sized pie of any sort.

The other stuff is yummy in it’s own way, though, just as Chicago-style or New England-style deep dishes can be. And getting back to the web page I linked to, the author seems to be VERY comprehensive about his directions, so I’ll be curious to try adapting it to my own taste.

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