Intermission

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Hello, everybody. dragon ball iphone 6 case I suppose a few of you have noticed there has not been a lot going on with this group blog effort recently. iphone 8 plus purse case I don’t (I never) want to say “life got in the way,” but the truth of the matter is that we are debating this blog’s future while dealing with several other all-consuming projects ranging from Masters’ theses to unexpected surgery. phone case iphone 7 magnetic In other words, we’re confused (and in some cases heavily medicated).

I predict we’ll stay peacefully in this lacuna for another couple of months. superhero iphone 8 case At that point we will make a decision on how to proceed. iphone 8 case with stand Speaking personally, fun though ranting about anything that crosses my mind is, I wouldn’t mind making this blog a little more, well, useful. You know, providing recipes people might actually cook and stuff.

15 comments to Intermission

  • I have cotton mouth and cotton head. What medication? Oh right.

    Yes, Dan wrote it well. We will ponder, convene — meanwhile, you can suggest, prod.

  • MadCalicoJess

    I would miss this if it went away completely. Even for the sparse updates I appreciate it for introducing new food ideas into my head; and some times the history/background behind some foods. While I might not tackle some of the recipes, I have enjoyed learning about Moroccan cooking, regional dishes (I live in the South), hot water cooking meat, lox, ponzu, spam jerky and even the ‘too much trouble to go to” martini Altoids tin. The more useful recipes are pretty handy as well because a lot of times there is an approach of “I did this, but you can do this or that, but you have to do this it’s important because….”

  • Kimberly

    Please don’t go away, I love this website!!!!

  • Thanks, @MadCalicoJess, good to know, one of our strengths is to inspire cookers to think outside of the box. :)

  • War Pig

    I agree W/MadCalicoJess. While interspersing some everyday recipes, classics, & regional favorites are good, I appreciate it when you guys stretch the mind. Whether new ways to make old things, or Asian recipes and stories of catching fish and squid at the same time. The photography is great, and the wide selection of dishes from all over is the main reason I check here.

    Penuche sorbet? Chinese Tea Eggs? Adobo? Altoids tins turned into stealth martinis? Where else can you find this all in one place?

    It gives me a reason to experiment with your recipes. While I may only make some once, as I do not care for them when tasted, some I make over and over.

    Ponzu sauce, homemade tater chips, marinated herring, Ethiopian Chicken, cooking in a Moroccan tangine. A wealth of experience and gastronomic adventure can be had here and I would miss it terribly if it were to disappear.

  • maljax

    Wait. Nipingshenmeshuo these aren’t useful recipes? If I had access to a kitchen and the right ingredients right now… I would have made at least a quarter of these since I found the site a month and a half ago. At the very least used them for inspiration some where along the line.

    I look at a lot of cooking blogs, but I seldom follow them. You folks manage to have that mystical blend of personality and practicality (you’re probably laughing – but that just means that you’re not making thirteen hundred kinds of cupcakes every week, and everything you seem to make seems to make sense for your specific situations; they seem like something out of life) that makes me sit up and follow a blog.

    So. I hope you return. This is honestly the sort of blog I wish I could be a part of.

  • maljax

    Whoops. I apologize for the Chinese (Nipingshenmeshuo – it’s essentially saying “Why in the world would you say?”). I’m currently in China and I’m pretty much only speaking Chinese. That’s also why I don’t have access to a kitchen or a lot of the right ingredients.

  • War Pig

    @maljax,

    Isn’t REAL Chinese food better than transplanted Chinese food?

  • Say War Pig, what’s your recipe for chipped beef aka ‘SOS’? I know you have one.

  • War Pig

    Chipped beef gravy? That is the classic, although a mess sergeant will use leftover hamburger meat and make it that way as well.

    Rinse and pat dry w/paper towels a jar of dried beef. I use Hormel but Armor is okay. The dried beef has concentrated flavor. It’s really salty so rinsing under running water and rubbing it to remove the excess salt is mandatory unless you like REALLY salty gravy. Roll several of the rinsed and dried slices together and slice them as if you were doing a wide chiffonade of basil, then cut each set of strips once or more through the middle, depending on how big you like your pieces. Do this until all are sliced/diced, but make them a bit wider than a true chiffonade, about as wide as your little finger, at least. I make mine as wide as my “signaling” finger ;-) and cut it through the middle once as I like bigger pieces

    In a nonstick pot, put in butter and some vegetable oil. Mixing the two raises the smoking point and flashpoint. How much depends on how much gravy you’re making. Experienced sausage-gravy makers will do this by eye. At least one whole stick of butter and two tablespoons of oil. More for more meat, less for less.

    Once the oil/butter is melted and thoroughly mixed, put the dried beef into the hot oil and simmer it, releasing the flavor of the dried beef into the fats. Do not cook it at too high a temp as you are not trying to deep fry or crisp the strips. I’d say use a medium low setting for this. Saute them thoroughly as they release their flavor.

    Add flour as you would when making any milk gravy, stirring the roux and cooking it to remove the raw flour taste and to infuse the roux with the beefy flavor, but do not brown the roux. At this point turn up the temperature to medium high to thoroughly cook the flour roux and prepare for the milk.

    Add milk as you would when making sausage gravy. I’m sorry, but I have done this by eye for so many years I don’t use measuring cups and haven’t for 40 years. If you are experienced in making gravy with flour and milk you’ll know how much of each to use. The only time I measured was when I was on mess duty as a private in the service and then we were making it in MASSIVE batches so those measurements wouldn’t work. If you’re not experienced, use any good recipe for flour & milk gravy to measure out the fats, flour and milk and use the rinsed, dried beef as the meat, but do cook the meat slowly as I mentioned. If you want black pepper in the gravy put it in and bloom it in the roux before adding the milk. I always do.

    Once you have the milk in, cook, stirring, until it begins to thicken up. I like mine thicker than most so I use more flour and less milk and no water whatsoever. If you like a thinner, pourable gravy, use 50/50 milk and water.

    If the gravy is too thin there are some tricks to thicken it back up. You can carefully add some instant potato flakes or buds mixed with a little water (mixing with water before putting it in the gravy prevents lumps). You can do the same thing using some corn starch, arrowroot or flour. Mix it with water to make a milky liquid and pour and stir it into the hot gravy and stir until it begins to thicken.

    Put it over toast or biscuits and enjoy.

    You can also make it by simply making hamburger gravy instead of the dried beef, but adding lots of pepper and perhaps some sage for flavor into the roux as hamburger gravy is pretty bland compared to dried beef.

    If you can stand to let it sit overnight in the fridge, it is even better rewarmed in the microwave the next day, in my opinion. The flavors have time to meld overnight. But it is a hard thing to do as this stuff tastes so great when fresh and hot over toast (the shingle) or biscuits and is usually all eaten up right away. In my humble opinion, it is best served with Tabasco sprinkled liberally over the gravy. But that’s just me. My GF disagrees. She loves the gravy but hates Tabasco. She likes it over toast with two over-easy eggs on top of it all. My grandson likes it over scrambled eggs and biscuits with golden-fried hash browns on the side.

    This is also good with or over grits. I make a big bowl of grits, put the gravy on top, and eat it together (after liberal application of Tabasco, of course).

  • Sounds good. I’ll try it. Fortunately my wife loves Tabasco.

  • War Pig

    The best flour I’ve found for making gravy is Wondra (or another instant, pregelatanized flour). They dampen it and spray it to dry it and that somehow works to make wonderfully silky gravy and sauces. Of course, Pillsbury. Gold Medal or any other all-purpose flour will work, too. Wondra is expensive compared to all-purpose, but the gravy is better with the Wondra. Wondra seldom lumps up, either.

  • War Pig

    Another SPAM recipe:

    I actually like this.

    Title: FRENCH FRY SPAM CASSEROLE
    Categories: Main dish
    Yield: 8 servings

    1 pk Frozen french fry potatoes,
    -thawed (20 oz)
    2 c Shredded Cheddar cheese (or shredded Velveeta)
    2 c Sour cream
    1 cn Condensed cream of chicken
    -soup (10 3/4 oz)
    1 cn SPAM Luncheon Meat, cubed
    -(12 oz)
    1/2 c Chopped red bell pepper (optional)
    1/2 c Chopped green onion
    1/2 c Finely crushed corn flakes

    Heat oven to 350′F. In large bowl, combine potatoes, cheese, sour cream, and soup. Stir in SPAM, bell pepper, and green onion. Spoon into 13×9″ baking dish. Sprinkle with crushed flakes. Bake 30-40 minutes or until thoroughly heated. You can also use 20 oz of frozen hash browns, thawed, instead of the french fries.

  • maljax

    @Warpig

    Yes. Yes. One million times yes. There are just so many things that you can’t find on menus here. I have a feeling that even if I went to China Town I wouldn’t be able to find some of these dishes. So it goes!

    What I will say for the best Chinese restaurant I go to in the states… They have dimsum.

  • War Pig

    What I really miss here in the states is cha siu bao. They served it for breakfast in Hong Kong. Oddly, for spiced pork buns or rolls, they were very good at breakfast. Here in Ohio I cannot find a single Chinese restaurant which serves dimsum for ANY meal of the day. Chinese-American is like how Tex-Mex food is not really like deep, southern, Mexican food.

    One cannot get a really good plate of siu mei anywhere in the US that I have found, let alone winter melon soup.