Thursday, December 31, 2009

bread glossary (and link to more)

I have yet to find a perfect glossary but this is my favorite so far: link to the fresh loaf glossary, a very nice glossary of bread terms that will prove quite useful later on.

Some of the ones I use often as they are on my favorite list. (lifted whole from the link above).

Boule: a round loaf (French for "ball")

Crumb: When a baker talks about the crumb they are talking about the pattern of holes inside of a loaf. (I am still working on this one... but someday hope to understand fully).

Fermentation: (1) the process by which yeast metabolizes sugars to produce carbon dioxide and alcohol (2) (aka bulk fermentation, first fermentation) the period of time the dough rests after mixing and before dividing/shaping.

Gluten: "A tenacious elastic protein of wheat flour that gives cohesiveness to dough." Gluten is what allows bread dough to develop those long, beautiful strands and create large open pockets of air (think about the inside of a loaf of Ciabatta compared to the inside of a muffin). Bread flours tend to be made from hard wheats that are higher in protein than regular flour, providing more gluten.

Poolish: A type of sponge. Typically quite wet, an equal weight of water and flour with an extremely small amount of yeast. For my batch of two French Bread loaves, I typically use 8 ounces of water, 8 ounces of bread flour, and 1/8 teaspoon a instant yeast. Mix it, cover the bowl, and leave it at room temperature overnight. (I understand from other sources as well as discussions on the fresh loaf that this may also be called "old bread" or "old dough" method. and was originally a bit of dough reserved from the previous days batch. I could also be misunderstanding greatly)

Sourdough: a preferment that is a culture of wild yeast and bacteria that is perpetuated by the periodic addition of flour and water, or a bread leavened in whole or part by this culture.

Sponge: Also known as a "preferment," a sponge is a portion of the ingredients that is mixed ahead of time, typically overnight. Using a sponge extends the fermentation process longer and generally releases more complex flavors in your loaf. It can also be used to soften dry ingredients (such as whole grains) and release sugars from the grains.

stock #003

As promised this was a meatless experiment.

Valerie wants to play a bit more here so now we start on more pasta dough recipes (we have a mixer to do the hard work now).

MMMMM----- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm)

Title: vegi-stock #1
Yields: 5 quarts
Cooktime: 3 hours
Preparation Time: 1/2 hour
Categories: broth

5 lb carrots
3 shallots
5 lb celery
3 stalks lemon grass (small)
1/2 c miso paste
2 tb soy sauce, dark
2 tb sugar, brown, dark
2 oz rosemary, fresh
2 oz dill, fresh
3 oz basil, leaf, fresh
5 qt water
2 tb mustard, hand ground, coarse
2 tb pepper, black, hand ground, coarse

* cut celery, carrots, shallots, lemon grass one or two times each peel/skin and all

* bruise the herbs

* everyone in the pool

* bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer.

* stir every 1/2 hour or so until the vegi's start to look a bit pale

* cool completely

* filter into a 5 qt snap top bottle.

Rating: 5/5 stars

Source: my head




add onions

add garlic

add dried tomatoes

switch miso paste for more soy sauce

switch miso for salt

switch miso for benito

toast various bits


polish rye (poolish) bread

I have made several test runs of this bread and decided it is pretty awesome (5/5 stars) in all forms including the original.

Presented here is my modifications and notes.

I am still playing with this one and will either post new when truly interesting changes happen, or comments when little things don't quite make it to "unique"

MMMMM----- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm)

Title: polish poolish rye buttermilk bread
Yields: 36 slices
Cooktime: 35 minutes
Preparation Time: 1/2 day
Categories: WAB, bread

1 pkt yeast, active, dry
1 ts sugar, brown
2 c water, warm
4 c flour, rye, dark

1 pkt yeast, active, dry
1 c buttermilk, room temperature
1 ts baking soda
1 tb salt
8 c flour, bread
1 tb caraway seed (optional)

Poolish (made yesterday)

* Dissolve yeast, sugar in water let stand until creamy.

* Stir in rye flour until smooth

* Let stand covered, over night.


* Dissolve the yeast in the buttermilk.

* Add the poolish, the baking soda, the salt, 4 cups of the bread flour and stir to combine.

* Add the remaining 4 cups of bread flour, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring well after each addition (you may not need to add all of the flour, you may need more).

* When the dough has become a smooth and coherent mass, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and supple, about 8 minutes.

* Sprinkle the caraway seeds on the dough and knead them in until they are evenly distributed throughout the dough.

* Lightly oil a large mixing bowl. Place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with the oil.

* Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place for about 1 hour or until the volume has doubled.

* Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

* Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface, break into the number of pieces you desire loafs.

* Form each piece into a loaf and place on a parchment paper lined baking tray with ample room double in size.

* Cover and let rise until nearly doubled, about 1 hour.

* Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for about 35 minutes or until the bottom of the loaves sound hollow when tapped.

Rating: 5/5 stars

Source: my head with influences from all recipes listed in the notes below

Prep time includes at least 8 hours resting the poolish, 2 hours proofing the bread, and all mixing.

Originally I am suspecting that the poolish was kept from the previous day's bread "old dough method" rather than specifically made from the rye flour the day before, but I could be wrong.

original was for 3 loafs, now is for two boule shaped loafs or hoagie rolls etc.

This bread is possible on any mixer that has at least 12C "flour power" though it give it a workout. I would not recommend lower ratings (mostly because there is 12c flour)


* hoagie buns (bonus)

* 4 tb dill seeds instead of caraway seeds (prefer dill, maybe even more)

* baked in roaster-oven (18qt slow cooker/roaster-oven sold in many appliance stores and shopping clubs)


* split ingredients into poolish and bread

* traded sugar for brown sugar (interesting change in flavor)

* played with cook times (longer and lower has some advantages in loaf pans, higher and shorter has advantages for hoagies or boules)

* traded loaf pans for free-form loaf and played with the flour a bit. Seems fine as originally stated. Some additional flour can make the bread a bit crustier.

* AP flour = generally most preferred. Pastry flour (low gluten) makes a bit denser bread. Bread flour (medium-high gluten) if my most preferred. Adding 2 tb vital gluten to bread flour is even better... awesome crust, not quite so dense

* started process of fixing for mixer since I cant mix by hand any longer.


* original


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

review: Buffet City

(edit and note to self: do not trust office software spell and grammar check because they let you use the wrong words that may be right in another context LOL)

Do you ever have the feeling that you are hungry for EVERYTHING all at the same time but do not want the pile of leftovers... so you opt for buffet (at least *WE* do).

As a veteran of many a buffet of various kinds, cuisines, styles, etc. I can safely say that buffets range from the barely edible (then only because they are what is available in a foreign place) to actually worth going out of your way to experience.

We have stumbled upon just a perfect example of the latter. They do have a menu which they quietly ask if you would like upon arrival... we were not there for just one thing we were there for the buffet!! (we will return to see if the rest of the menu lives up to the buffet or not).

First the advertising from their menu/place-mat
Buffet City
Chinese * Japanese * mongolian BBQ & American Cuisine
TEL 801-965-0088
FAX 801-969-7687
2739 S 5600 W #110
West Ualley City UT 84120
(and yes I left the spelling error we all had a big laugh about in... should be Valley)
We Use Vegetable Oil Only
Cholesterol Free
No M.S.G. Low Salt
Party Welcome

Over 100 Items Daily
Menu Include: Sushi Bar, Japanese Tepenyaki, B-B-Q Grill, Salmon Fish, Ribs, Shrimp, Beef, Pork, Chicken, Duck, Walnut Shrimp, Cocktail Shrimp, Orange Chicken, Sweet & Sour Chicken, Sesame Pork, Pot Sticker, Clam, Mussel, Oyster, Appetizers, Soup, Lo Mein, Chow Mein, Egg Foo Young, Fried Rice, Salad Bar, Fruit, Cake, Ice Cream, Dessert And Much More … … …

Lunch Buffet 6.99
Dinner Buffet 9.99
(lower for children but I am not going to post all of that unless someone wants to know)
Senior Citizens Over
65 10% off
We Have Party Room
Up to 100 People
Open 7 days a week
11:00am – 10:00PM (22:00 for you 24 hour types)
except Friday and Saturday when they close at 10:30pm (22:30)

We went in late evening after a VERY busy day and some things were a little stale or just not present so a full review can not really be made yet. The place is in a rather unassuming strip mall and from the outside not exactly awe or hunger inspiring, especially with many local favorites in the area and more fast food than one can shake a large tree at.

The staff was still present from the party/rush which left the place slightly worse for the ordeal, and ate in the party room before going home basically with us.

Do yourself a favor if you like Asian food and at least give them a chance...
I had a couple of pieces of various sushi which had been covered (did not suffer from the dryness some of the hot food did). Tuna roll, spicy tuna, shrimp roll all met my standards very well. The pretend wasabi is only partly pretend in that it does have wasabi as well as horseradish which is more commonly what is called wasabi in Utah,

The Mongolian BBQ was present, staffed and available but both of us ignored it and frankly I didn't notice what was available other than all of the insert pans were full, looked fresh, smelled very nice, etc.

On to the buffet itself... Everything I had was tasty, some to an excess. Everything was low salt and the only M.S.G. I could detect was the kind already present in various of the ingredients (glutimates are present in several forms in many ingredients of Asian food and a few USAican foods as well).

Some of my food was admittedly a little dry but I will forgive them as my experience tells me there is a time after a rush when you choose to ignore the buffet and allow stuff to run out naturally because usually after a rush you just as well close the place and go home early (especially true now that “everyone” has a cell phone and calls their friends, micro blogs, or otherwise notifies the world that the place was “packed so full we had to go to ____ to eat”).

All of the shrimp dishes were quite tasty. The walnut shrimp in particular reminded me of a dish I often pay for in a local Thai place (there advertised as coconut shrimp and containing grated & toasted coconut but otherwise very similar, down to both sauces being reduced coconut milk and sugar).

There were also Mexican dishes not mentioned on the place-mat including burrititos (their word for tiny burritos, I assume supplied by one of the several Mexican staff that we saw), and tiny soft folded tacos. Both tasty though my wife found the tiny burritos a bit dry and ended up eating the centers and leaving the ends.

The shell fish both cold and hot were quite tasty. Nothing unique here other than most buffets around here do not serve shell fish or do so only once in a while.

The cold mussels had been marinated and/or cooked in something which seemed citrus based (I had only a small bit of one because the sign led me to believe I may have a problem and could not explain my citrus allergy to the person that was close at hand) and would be quite delicious were it not for my allergy. Slightly sweet, probably orange and just a tiny bit waved over the mussel before being poached not steamed... Not over cooked, then chilled with gelled shell-fish juice poured into each shell.

The cold/salad bar held more treasures. I was a little annoyed that I could not figure out the ingredients in the fake crab meat salad but assume it is probably something I have not tasted previously. It was however very good and quite worth the return trip for all on it's own.

The fruit even out of season was tasty and fresh (if you can call something shipped half way across the USA fresh).

Dessert is rather standard buffet style around here with one exception. Rather than the air filled soft serve ice cream or yogurt it was a rather tasty tiny tub or orange cream-cicles or one other we have forgotten. The tubs came in vanilla, strawberry or chocolate.

Nothing was found to be spoiled or inedible, all in all definitely on our list next time we feel the buffet urge even if it is still early enough in the day for the Asian buffet near our house to be open. (A review of the closer place will be had soon as far as the buffet equally tasty but without the other options like sushi, BBQ, tepanyaki, etc. and no menu to order from).

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

review: Super China Market

An Asian market we stumbled upon recently.

Super China Market
115 W. 9000 S. Sandy,UT 84070
Local: (801) 255-1118
Fax: (801) 255-6777

We stopped on our way to the vet and walked the whole store rather quickly. We gather this store is less than a year old. It is way out side of our normal path but well worth the extra gas/hassle to pay them a visit.

This is probably the largest area of any Asian store in the Salt Lake valley.

FRESH produce including some of the most beautiful daikon and young coconuts either of us have seen.

* more fresh mushrooms than I recall ever seeing in one place in this state.

*1 full aisle each (both sides) beverages of all kinds

* 1 full aisle (both sides) noodles

* 1.5 full aisles (3 sides) cookware, service-ware, appliances.

* very well stocked fresh and live meat department (even the big boys don't often have live seafood around here) Including crab and lobster at very reasonable prices.

* 0.5 aisle sauces of the miscellaneous type (plumb, fish, bbq, etc.)

* 0.5 aisle just devoted to soy and soy like sauces flavored and not.

* 0.5 aisle frozen products.

* 1 to 1.5 aisles (across regular aisles) packaged meats including some very interesting 'boil in bag' type udon noodles with stock, goodies, etc. like instant ramen but with udon noodles.

* 1 full aisle candy, crackers, cookies, etc.

* a fresh deli and restaurant which smelled quite divine and looked about the same.

and finally various other tidbits on the end caps and at the front of the store including some videos and seasonal/decorative items

The prices seem very reasonable, especially for the fresh produce and meat.

More when we return so we didn't keep XYL's cat waiting at the vet (she was already mad enough at us LOL).

quest #2

Time for a 2nd quest...

The quest for salumi with a catch... without meat.

I suppose salumi is a bit broad for what we are doing but since we are tossing meat out of this equation all together everything is a bit broad.

So we are making a pepperoni like product first (see pepperoni is a subset of salami which is a specific form of salumi, and possibly an USAican subset at that). We are using commercial ground pepper for several reasons trying to replicate the flavor of a particular meat product we are fond of.

We are probably not going cure/ferment the first version but we have started looking the results of some web searches to see what is possible with a product like tofu (fermented soy bean product often also used as a meat replacement) but from wheat instead of the more common soy curd.

The purpose is not to eliminate meat from our diet as much as to share a flavor we are fond of with anyone who has eliminated meat from their diet.

When we have perfected this one flavor we will move on to others...

If you have a suggestion for our next meatless salami comments or email are always good!

If I choose to use the word Charcuterie ( does that solve Anyone's issues with using the word Salumi?

[sigh] didn't think so ;) since most USAicans are completely unfamiliar with both words.

In any case your thought on seitan like products which taste like various salt cured meats and maybe even feel a bit like them whether fermented or not are welcome and encouraged!!

Before you get your underthings all in a twist, I am not one thinks wikipedia is the be-all-end-all of information spreading and correctness.

HOWEVER in this case it happens to agree with what I have learned from reputable sources in the cured meat industry, is well written, and serves the particular purpose without getting me in trouble with any but those who choose argue with anyone who uses open source information.

yogurt quick bread

Borrowed from and modified both for personal tastes and ingredient shortages a couple of times.

This is a very nice bread slightly sweet, very tangy, and moist.

MMMMM----- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm)

Title: yogurt quick bread
Yields: 12 servings
Cooktime: 1 hour 10 minutes
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Categories: bread-quick

2 c flour, fine pastry
2 tb flour, vital gluten
2 tb sugar, brown
1 ts baking soda
1 1/2 c yogurt, I usually use homemade yogurt
1/4 c butter, melted
2 egg whites, large

1. Preheat oven to 350

2. Lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cup/spoon

level with a knife.

Combine flour, sugar, baking soda and salt in a large bowl.

mix well

Make a well in center of mixture.

3. Combine yogurt, butter, and egg whites, stirring with a whisk.

Place over low heat just till the butter is melted.

Add to flour mixture, stirring just till moist. DO NOT OVER MIX

4. Spread batter into an 8x4" loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Bake
at 350 for 70 minutes or till wooden pick inserted in center comes out

5. Cool 10 mins. in pan on wire rack;

remove from pan.

Cool completely on wire rack.

Source: WAB,

originally Pleclare

10 months ago (20091107)

Savory flavor, tender texture and a crunchy crust make this bread a
good all-purpose accompaniment.

I tend to use my own yogurt. I also tend to over culture my yogurt.
Some people may not like the tang of the yogurt most of which can be
countered with a little extra baking soda OR culturing the yogurt for
a normal time instead of my 12+ hours.

V1.2 (20091122)

* no buttermilk so used yogurt... nummy

* Added 2tb vital gluten and baked in the roaster. This seems to help
the falling problem.

* Time is still an issue. Perhaps raise the temp a bit in the roater
next time.

* Melted the butter with the yogurt over a low flame.

V1.1 (20091107)

*sugar -> sugar, brown. This tastes most like gramma's bread.

*flour -> pastry flour (it is all I have at present)

*baked in nesco baking/roaster This is bonus but does require a bit
longer bake time. Taste is improved to me, texture is vastly
improved. This baking method is more likely to fall after removing
from the heat. A bit more gluten in the flour (think bread flour)
should do the trick

*I think the butter melting needs to be handled differently, possibly
melted in the butter milk slowly.

*smells good so far.

V1.0 (20091106)

followed Pleclare's recipe exactly, baked in oven.


Monday, November 23, 2009

Rant #1 demonizing the wrong foods and additives

Ok, I am going to ruffle feathers so if yours are easily ruffled and this makes you jerk your knees to your chest and waggle about the world coming to an end please look elsewhere for your nightly reading.

What do the following products or ingredients all have in common?
Tree Nuts
Mono Sodium Glutamate (and any other Sodium or Glutamate)
Wheat (probably mostly Gluten)
hydrogenated oils
… etc.

1)They are all demonized by one group or another.
2)They are all ingredients or products which have been used as food for millennia
3)BILLIONS of other people have successfully consumed them for that time

Just because I am allergic to citrus (and I have experienced anaphylaxis a couple of time as a result of my careless approach to this awesome tasty product) does NOT mean that NOBODY should eat citrus or products containing citrus.

It does mean that I have a right to know that what I am about to eat contains what is to me a poison.

It does mean that I have the choice to make:
1)consume the product and pray the resulting reaction is minimal
2)find something else to consume instead

Now I do have a theory as to why there is a growing number of people experiencing food related issues.

Lets take a quick look in our way back machine to see what has changed in the most recent hundred years or so.

1)Especially in the “developed” world we are producing food (meats and plants alike) in cramped and chemically “enhanced” condition.
2)We feed our food (again plant and animal alike) antibiotics and other prophylactic measures to “prevent” issues that we created (see #1)
3)We feed our food various substances natural and not to make our food products look nicer, grow larger, and generally look like something produced in a factory not on a farm.
4)We torture especially our animal food by cramming it together twice as much as our plant food.
5)Many of these additives are fat soluble which creates a reason to demonize fats which only adds to the other reasons why a fat should be avoided today when years ago it would have not been a problem.
6)We use hydrogenated oils with great abandon rather than moderation.
7)We generally ignore eons of wisdom in favor of producing the most product in the smallest space possible at the cost of our health and well being :(
8)We chase the all mighty cash cow and maximum profit over our own health and well being.
9)We subsidize one or two products and then spend millions of dollars/drachma/yen/euros/etc. again forgetting the moderation in all things wisdom of the ages.
10)We process our food into a form that would not be recognized by people even a few decades ago as food.

Somewhere we need to go back to open markets free of government payments to produce or not produce a certain product. A market where health and well being are what food is all about (and this DOES NOT mean we need to have our food taste like saw-dust!) not the mansions a few people (seldom the producers of the products more often the processors of the product)

We need to get past the “need” for one or two products at the expense of healthy food choices (a good example of this is corn... we actually spend millions of dollars here in the USA finding new ways to use corn and it's chemically enhanced offspring such as High Fructose Corn Syrup... another is soybeans and I am sure every “developed” country has it's own cash cows which are subsidized over sound logic and moderation).

Comments? flames? etc. you know how to add them, lets get this discussion moving ;)

Monday, November 9, 2009

Eggnog Pumpkin Cheesecake

This just came up in my reading of so I decided to post it here :)

This recipe was originally designed for a halloween or thanksgiving deal long ago.

The optional spices add a slight kick which actually makes this slightly more popular than my Jalepeno cheesecake in most quarters. If you do not like a kick feel free to leave them out.

MMMMM----- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm)

Title: Eggnog Pumpkin Cheesecake
Yields: 12 pieces
Cooktime: 1 hour
Preparation Time: 1 hour
Categories: dessert, WAB

20 gingersnaps (I usually go overboard on the snaps)
1/2 c almonds, slivered, toasted
1/4 c sugar
1/4 ts spice 2, toasted

-------------------------------SPICE 1-------------------------------
1 ts cinnamon, ground
1/2 ts allspice, ground
3/4 ts ginger, ground
1/4 ts pepper, black, fine grind
1/8 ts cloves, ground (err on the light side for most peoples tastes)
1/2 ts nutmeg, ground

------------------------SPICE 2 (MY FAVORITE)------------------------
1 tb chai masala
1/4 ts cayenne, powder (optional)
1 ts cinnamon, ground (optional)

2 tb butter, melted
3/4 c sugar
4 eggs, large, separated
1 can pumpkin, solid pack (16 oz)
16 oz cream cheese, softened

------------------------------TOPPING 1------------------------------
1 c prepared eggnog (I make my own but any should work well)
1 tb cornstarch
1/8 ts nutmeg, ground
almonds for garnish

------------------------------TOPPING 2------------------------------
1 pk gelatin, eggnog flavored (see notes)
1/8 ts nutmeg, ground

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F. This works much better if you
actually preheat the oven promise. I usually turn the oven on before
I get out my ingredients and the cream cheese softens on the oven vent
almost perfectly while I get everything else going.

Spray 9" by 3" springform pan with nonstick cooking spray. I have
used shiny or non-stick springforms in place of the spray gunk, but
most people and the restaurant this was created for prefer the spray
solution to everything.


1) In food processor with knife blade attached (works in most blenders
too), blend gingersnaps, almonds, and sugar until finely ground, stir
in butter.

2) Press mixture onto bottom and about 2 1/2 inches up side of
springform pan, set aside. I often will put the crust in the
refrigerator for a few minutes to increase the chance that my crust
decoration will survive the filling of the crust. (see notes)


1) In small bowl, with mixer at high speed, beat egg whites until
foamy. Gradually beat in sugar until soft peaks form; set aside. I
prefer a whisk and elbow grease, but when in Rome...

2) In large bowl, with same beaters and with mixer at medium speed,
beat egg yolks, pumpkin, cream cheese, spice1 or spice2 (see notes)
until well blended.

3) Fold egg-white mixture into cream-cheese mixture; pour into
springform pan. Use the mixer here, elbow grease is ok but it can be
over harsh on some people.


(see notes)

1) Bake 1 hour or until knife inserted 1 inch from edge of cheesecake
comes out clean.

2) Cool cheesecake in pan on wire rack.


1) In small saucepan, mix eggnog, cornstarch, and nutmeg.

2) Over medium heat, heat to boiling.

3) Reduce heat to low; simmer until mixture thickens.

4) Let stand 10 minutes to cool slightly.

5) Remove side of springform pan from cheesecake; spread eggnog
mixture over cheesecake. Garnish with walnuts. (I will actually top
the cheesecake before removing the side... remember that crust overage
any that has not fallen so far is gently knocked down on top of the

Refrigerate cheesecake until well chilled. This cheesecake is really
much better tomorrow if that is possible.

Rating: 5/5 stars
Source: my head, internet, who knows

The spices:

I am a big huge large fan of using Indian Chai Masala (the spices that
make what we in America know as Chai Tea) instead of the components
mostly because the chai spice has a couple of extra components I think
go well here.

I also like to dry toast what ever spices I choose in a SMALL skillet
over medium to low heat. DO NOT BURN these spices or you will regret
it for a very very long time. No matter which you choose you will
want to do nothing but toast the spices when that is your task. The
oils come out and if you leave it two breaths or more past burnt it
can ruin your pan when it flames for a moment.

I am not afraid of adding a pinch or two of the toasted spices to the
crust or topping or both as well.

The crust:

My reason for liking the last little bits of crust knocked down on the
pie are largely historical. Two of the people who taught me to cook
did this on most cheesecakes thus so do I.

This decoration is also why I often get carried away with an extra 5
or so gingersnaps. If doing the decoration press the crust to 2 1/2
inches with full coverage, and 1/4 inch more very thinly. The idea is
that while baking this will shoot from the pan across the pie but it
only goes maybe 1/2 inch. What does not pop in the oven will be
knocked down on top of the topping later.

I tend to toast my own almonds, but as with many things in this recipe
the powers that be or stupid employees make that impractical. You may
choose which ever way you prefer of course.


I tend to bake until the knife comes out "almost" clean and then I
cool the cheesecake in a warm over that has been turned off maybe 1/2
hour before being used as a cooling box. Again the reasons for this
are largely historical and probably not for anyone but us crazy folks.


A Mexican friend of mine makes this recipe except he uses 1 package of
El Mexicano(tm) eggnog flavored gelatin made with 1/2 the milk called
for and substitutes cream for the milk. He then pours about 1/2 of
it over the pie with the side still on and is a little less gentle
than I am at knocking down the remaining crust. Once he has this done
he randomly inserts a butter knife around the edge of the pie so there
will be gelatin out side of the crust in a drizzled manner.

If you choose to do this PLEASE DO use the cooking spray as otherwise
you will tear your beautiful creation to bits when you pop the side.

He makes two at a time so the gelatin is used at the same time.

He also claims that a warm wet towel rubbed rather quickly over the
side before you pop the latch will almost always let it come out free
but I have not perfected that technique.

V2.3p (20091109)

posted to blog and possibly usenet.

V2.3 (20091109)

corrected a couple of typos I have missed for who knows how long

V2.2 (20051120)

H.G. uses eggnog gelatin = nummy too

V2.1 (19990315)

toast the spices like for stock = awesome!

V2.0 (just after leaving The Messerschmidt, before UG)

Just got the idea (and tried it) to use chai masala for the spices and
made it so.

V1.1 (unknown)

added my real way of doing things as notes and comments

V1.0 (~1989?)

Originally made for the Messerschmidt private club, Halloween/Thanksgiving deal.


Sunday, November 8, 2009

next stock intallment (revie removed to it's own posting)

First off stock #002 is pretty darned good.

Second, there was some confusion over flour at the market... high gluten turned into vital gluten and noodles turned into seitan.

Then there were family issues and pet issues and... so hopefully next week we make noodles with 3 parts pastry flour to 1 part vital gluten flour for perfectly chewy noodles.

Stock #003 on our quest is going to be a vegetable stock and our current thought is:
lemon grass
and what ever else the Asian market has that looks good.

They have some awesome stock bones so stock #004 will have to be a meat stock again.


Thursday, November 5, 2009

my extra chewy pasta dough

This is a request and was probably filled before I was quite ready to do so since I have already updated the version at home twice after this one.

This is a sturdy general purpose pasta dough which can be used to form any cut or rolled pasta we have tried so far.

It breaks extruder machines but I suppose a bit more water and a bit less playing with your food could make a pasta that could be extruded

I will play with that after someone buys me an extruder LOL... Christmas is coming and my birthday is in March, Amazon has my wish list ;)

MMMMM----- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm)

Title: Will's chewy pasta dough
Yields: 12 servings
Cooktime: 5 minutes
Preparation Time: 1 hour
Categories: pasta, WAB

3 1/2 c Flour
1 ts Dark Soy Sauce
1 tb sour cream (optional)
2 Egg
2 tb Oil
1 c water
water as needed

Pasta flour is easiest to work with at first but higher gluten flour
means less playing with it later and easier time playing with it.

I prefer pasta made in a bowl but I know many people prefer on a flat
surface... the choice is yours.

Beat the eggs with a fork and a TB of cold water until they start to
froth, add the sour cream and soy sauce

Make a well in the middle of the mound of flour however you choose to
deal with it.

Pour this into the well in the flour and whip around the edges of the
well grabbing a bit of flour every pass until you start to get a thick
bloby mess.

Time to start playing with your food. Depending on the moisture of
your four you may need more water, more flour, or more play time to
make it a smooth dough.

Finish mixing the flour with your hands (removing rings is a VERY good
idea unless you like to eat metal and gemstones... this dough will get
quite sticky and gloopy before it is done). smash the dough into a
large piece and fold it in half, mash again, repeat until the dough
starts to get rubbry.

If you have a pasta roller now is a very good time to get it out ;)

If your dough is a bit sticky add a little flour, if instead of rubber
bands you start to get rubber balls add a little water but the goal
here is to have one large smooth mass of rubber band.

Much like asian pulled or udon pasta this is where it gets
difficult... Once the dough starts to hold together and not need much
additional water or flour you can use a pasta machine to play with the
dough for about 1/2 hour. You are trying to work up a huge gluten
ball here. Udon noodles are now stepped on (traditionally) folded and
walked on some more, pulled noodles are pulled like taffy, etc. We
are rolling or folding our pasta to get it all worked up.

Let the dough rest for about 15 minutes.

form as desired.

I prefer to boil the pasta even if I am serving it fresh. Boil for about 5
minutes and then hang to dry or store as desired. The boiling makes it a much
firmer and chewier pasta

Rating: 5/5 stars

Source: my head

The sour cream is not needed but it will add a very nice tang to the pasta and it really wakes up some otherwise tried and true dishes.

you are now ready to make what ever pasta form you choose. Some of our favorites here are:
*run through the pasta machine as spaghetti or fettuccine
*cut with a knife into tagliarini or other ribbon pasta
* hand stuffed to make perogies or ravioli
* cut into bow ties
* lasagna

If you are not going to eat the pasta fresh it is a good idea to boil it now and then it can be dried and stored for a few months or kept refrigerated in a container covered with water for a week or so.

Honestly even if I am serving it right now I tend to boil it, then rapidly cool it, then cook to serve because I like the texture that this makes.

V1.0 posted to
V1.1 posted to

V1.1 added some notes, corrected some spelling. etc.


Very possibly my favorite turkey stuffing ever

This is probably among the best foul stuffing recipes I have ever created or eaten.

The story included in the notes is left in for color and because without it the stuffing is just another good stuffing to me ;)

MMMMM----- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm)

Title: foul stuffing from Garden Ave V1.1p
Yields: 1 batch
Preparation Time: 1/2 hour
Categories: WAB, stuffing, Will

1 x loaf sour dough and/or french bread
1 C rasins
3 sweet apples finely chopped
3 sour apples finely chopped
1 lg onion

--------------------BRUSHING SAUCE PARTIAL RECIPE--------------------
2 tb oregeno (dry)
2 tb sweet basil (dry)
pepper ground to taste
1 ts chili powder
1 tb dark soy sauce
1/2 C honey
2 C chicken stock

Chunk the bread and let it sit out in the air to get mostly dry. (I let it sit overnight in a cloth covered bowl)

chop apples and onions and toss together (will keep the apples from rusting as rapidly as normal).

Add the basil, oregano, pepper, chili powder, soy sauce to the chicken stock and warm to about 180 degrees. Add the honey and remove from heat

add the apples, onions, and raisins to the bread and mix well.

slowly add the chicken stock mixture, you may not use it all!!

You want the bread to be moist but not soaked so there is still some ability to soak up the juices from the bird.

Stuff and enjoy!

I tend to use the left over stock with a little additional honey as a brushing sauce while cooking the bird

Rating: 5/5 stars

Source: my head

I know that it often made not acceptable these days to stuff a turkey, however *I* still do it as often as I can (no holiday needed to convince me to stuff a bird and roast away). If you are in the "no stuff" crowd then by all means don't stuff you can enjoy this recipe without even getting it close to a bird.

I have also made this quite acceptably in vegan versions (substitute chicken stock with your favorite option)

I will post V2.0 of this recipe later on, same ingredients but many are toasted... not sure why but this one is still my favorite of the two, though other recipes have been my favorites with toasted goodies first.

The first thanksgiving we lived in Salt Lake (on Garden Avenue) a friend was living with us and for many reasons none of us would be spending time with family that weekend.

I made this stuffing out of literally what was in the house at the time and the bird came from one of our work (probably ONE reason why we didn't do thanksgiving with family one or more of us worked for the bird LOL).

The house had this awesome built-in convection oven. As a bonus anything cooked in that oven spread the smell throughout the neighborhood.

Val and friend went to get vegis etc. and I set about cooking.

So the sweet little old lady across the street came over begging for my wifes recipe and she WILL NOT take it from me nor believe I cooked it up. Finally in desperation she asks: "have your wife bring me that wonderful smelling recipe when she gets back". Val finally took it to her, and even from VAl's mouth she would not accept that she was only the messenger LOL


an apology and history lesson

A few postings here and elsewhere have raised questions and possibly hurt some feelings so a little history lesson from the point of view of a 45 year old guy who had a bit of an odd childhood even by the standard of the day ;)

K.S. I did not mean to be flip about “old things” and actually thought that most people would probably laugh but would know what I was talking about.  I knew modems would be outside of many people's experience even a bit older ones since you have not been able to purchase a dial up modem easily for some years now.  I am not sure your age but will work to take into account the fact that I probably ramble about a  great many things which would confuse even a person my age.

After consulting my niece and nephew I have been informed that modems and phone lines are in fact quite outside of many but not all young peoples experiences and that a better description may be in order.  Also many people my age actually have no idea what some of things I take for granted are as well... Guess I am an out-lier in more ways than I hoped...

Phone lines are a means of talking before radio (cell phones are just two way radios with some extra goodies inside) phones were affordable, carry-able or common place.  You could only talk on the phone one at a time or your computer could talk on the phone but not both at the same time.  If you were using the phone your brother could not call his chum, likewise if he was playing a game with his friends “online” (and that is another story for another day) or sending an email you could not  call your friend (stress on the singular).  About the time I was in Jr high school there was a feature added to phones called “conferencing” where I could call another two or three people but the limits on that were even pretty oppressive LOL.  Prior to that several houses shared the wires “party lines”  and that also is a story for another time.  Funny today the same limits apply to conferencing on cell phone.  Someone somewhere is not getting the message that things change, especially where technology is involved gahhh.

Many of you may be familiar with a cordless phone in your house.  This uses the phone lines and then makes the phone into a radio and the headset into a radio so it simulates a cell phone over shorter distances.  Your Directv or other satellite TV  also may need a phone line to call and exchange information about your pay per view etc.  This is now changing as more and more people never even install a phone line (and I didn't know how many people that had become LOL).

So you plugged your computer into the wires in your walls and called computers who did nothing but wait for you to call.  Much like you would browse to facebook or myspace today you would dial “Ken's cooking BBS” or “Dial Your Match Pawtucket” or what ever.  These machine would only have a few people able to connect at the same time if you were lucky. 

Many of the features you would expect on a social networking site today were present though often in a format youth today would probably not recognize.  EVERYTHING was text based including the games.  Most of these machines at first did not talk to other machines, so what you did on “The BBS #1” stayed there.  People did eventually (by the time I was frequently phoning BBSs) figure out how to have these machines call each other and exchange little briefcases full of messages so that I could call  “Ken's” and have my message be spread to several other cooking BBSs before 24 hours had passed (of course today this is instant).  As the Internet grew into a toddler there was also something called Usenet (still available today but sadly mostly unused by the common people) which could be accessed even if one did not have an Internet connection (also dial up for quite some time) using gateways which would take the information from a BBS and exchange it with a Usenet server somewhere which then put it out on the bigger Internet.

This brings me to the first computer I used to manage recipes.  It could not even count to a meg let alone consider that much memory and the gigs of today would give it a headache for a week.  It had a whopping total of 256 characters of memory installed (think 2 SMS texts worth of typing) and was eventually upgraded to 4096 characters (roughly 30 texts worth of typing).  The storage device was a cassette tape (like music comes on though even that is becoming as dated as phone lines LOL) machine with special controls the computer could manage. 

When I wanted to find a recipe I would rewind the tape, start the search and the machine would start the tape in a fast mode.  Each time it found a recipe it would slow down to normal speed and read the recipe in and see if it was the one I wanted before either telling me about it's find or moving on to the next recipe on the tape.

This machine was mostly used because I could and was actually a much larger PITA than it was actually worth.  However as soon as I got a Commodore Pet  and eventually a Vic-20 (and many many other antiques made by Commodore, Apply, IBM, etc.) with a floppy drive (made out of the same stuff as a cassette tape but flat like a dinner plate inside an envelope with tiny holes where information was read/written while the floppy was spun inside the envelope) which held more data and was randomly accessible. 

I also had a printer now and it was actually useful to put recipes on a computer but storage space was still an issue. 

These floppies were almost as large as your side plate at ~5 inches and held 170,000 characters of information each for the best ones available at the time and much more commonly about ¼ to ½ of that.  The machines could only understand about 64,000 characters of information total and Bill Gates the CEO of Microsoft for most of the companies lifetime once said “All anyone will ever need is 640,000” or similar a few years later (about when I was in high school).

For this reason I have developed a habit of reusing my space as I work on a recipe.  Only recently forcing myself to learn to keep all versions because it has actually been useful to go back to some of those once in a while.

Hopefully that explains some of the “crazy talk” I have been exhibiting recently but always feel free to log in and send me an email or leave a comment with questions or whatever :)

On a side note I made some awesome computer music with that machine, including playing the National Anthem of the US at a few sporting events.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Pho stock #002

Edit: not quite as shortly as planned but on now :)
And we are out of pepper so 1/8 c of huy fung siracha will replace that
forgot the garlic and ginger
recipe updated
end edit:

This recipe has not yet been made even once. It is going on shortly and I will post what we think when it is all over.

This 2nd major version will also be served with a high gluten wheat flour noodle more like an udon noodle than a Pho noodle (thus the name change from Pho quest to noodle soup quest)

MMMMM----- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm)

Title: pho style broth 002
Yields: 10 quarts
Cooktime: 1/2 day
Preparation Time: 1 1/2 hours
Categories: soup, broth, WAB, Vietnamese

------------------------------THE BONES------------------------------
1 ham bone (see notes)
5 lb shank steak (bony, mostly trimmed of fat)

------------------------------THE VEGIS------------------------------
2 onions, yellow collosal (peel and all)
1 bunch celery
3 lb carrots
2 bunch onions, green (washed and nothing else)
4 bulbs garlic (peel and all)
1 piece ginger (about the size of a large thumb, sliced 1/4" thick)

------------------------------THE SPICES------------------------------
4 sticks cinnamon (3")
5 stars star anise (optional and not in this batch)
1 ts fennel seeds
1 ts dill seeds
1 ts black mustard seed
12 cloves (whole)
1/8 c siracha (we use huy fung)
--------------------------THE FINAL TOUCHES--------------------------
3 tb sugar, dark brown
3 tb salt

1/2 c soy sauce, dark

Par boil the bones, then skip the water, remove the bones and rinse to
make sure that little tor no skimming will be needed once you start
cooking the broth.

Cut the vegis peel and all into manageable chunks and brown in a
medium hot skillet. Unless you have a monster skillet you may need to
do several batches.

Lightly toast the spices until you can smell them throughout the house
but not until they burn (the line is very fine as the song correctly
states about the hot water in the shower... between toasted and burnt)

Put the spices into a spice bag in the bottom of a large slow cooker
(we use a commercial 3 gallon slow cooker), put the bones on top of
this, and the vegis on top of the bones.

Set the slow cooker for 250 degrees F and leave alone for 12 to 14
hours. This should not need any attention at all and past experience
tells me that checking on the broth will make things go sideways if
not just plain wrong.

Remove as much of the bones and goodies as you can. We pick over the
bones (and in this case the shank steaks are going to be the first
meat for a bowl while it is still hot) and use the goodies of quick
meals for a couple of days but you can be traditional about it... I
won't tell either way,

Let the broth sit and cool just enough that you can handle it without
being injured. Pour through a filter of your choice. Some ideas we
have used are listed in the notes.

Enjoy one bowl now because you can :)

If you will be storing now is the time for that (see notes for some
ideas we have used to make this awesome to take to work).

Rating: 4/5 stars

Source: my head

1) the ham bone. Started life as as a picnic ham cured but not cooked
which then had most of the meat removed. This will be used later for
pork Pho though will be cooked before serving instead of beef usually
raw before the broth is pored over it.

2) We have heard of people concentrating their stock by simmering in a
stock pot stirring frequently, when reduced by about 3/4 or so pouring
into ice cube trays and freezing. 1-2 concentrated cubes is
apparently about a perfect bowl.

3) This broth does not gel as well as broth #001 because of the lack
of feet so instead of gelling and cutting into cubes to be frozen we
pour into small zip top freezer bags and carefully stack in the
freezer. This makes a perfect ice cube for keeping the rest of your
work meal cold as well as making the management of the meal much

4) After looking at MANY MILLIONS (ok maybe a slight exaggeration ) of
Pho stock recipes and going to the store specifically to get
ingredients after all of that reading armed with ideas of what
everyone who will be partaking in this quest likes and dislikes (or is
allergic to) this is our first all original recipe.

5) filtering ideas

* a commercial coffee filter+filter-pot (the monster ones you see in a

* a filter designed to clean a deep fryer.

* a fine double dutch screen china cap (a method of making a screen
that lets water pass freely but holds back even the finer particles,
also called "filter screen" or various trade names).

* a coffee filter in a strainer or coarse china cap.

* cheese cloth in a strainer or china cap.



Notes about the software I use and have used

So all of the recipes I will be posting (or have posted) will be in a format called "mealmaster format" or various similar names. The specific format is one of the later expanded formats used by that program.

This format was designed when "the Internet" was something your father may have come home from work talking about or you may have had a close brush with it at the university level. "Regular people" used now ancient devices called modems to dial a phone line to a remote computer... (come to think of it a "phone line" may be difficult to explain to some younger people LOL). These computers were called BBS's or "Bulletin Boards".

As the Internet started to toddle along there was a (now sadly much unused) service available called "Usenet" which functions much like the BBS's of days long gone in that a person can read and post messages in a categorized manner where people could find them easily when looking for (whatevahh).

This format allowed people to exchange recipes easily which would not be too badly mangled by the BBS or Usenet systems and also allowed easy importing and exporting of the recipes one wished to gather or share.

This format is still quite widely accepted even by the ultra-modern software.

I currently use Gourmet Recipe Manager which is not readily available for Microsoft Windows though if you understand the python programming language and are good at wrangling libraries you should be able to get it working with the MS product.

There are several pieces of software for Windows both commercial and not (some of which are also free) including the original Mealmaster (now freeware) which will easily deal with this format.

I have used a number of pieces of software including some I wrote myself to manage recipes over the years and the one thing they have so far all had in common was the ability to manage one or more of the accepted mealmaster formats well enough to not require too much hand editing after the fact for importing and exporting.

If enough people ask for it I will post my notes on the various pieces of software I have used over the years and my thoughts on some of the software I don't or haven't used.

As promised Pho broth #001

This is the third modification of the original recipe and has not been tried yet.

MMMMM----- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm)

Title: pho style broth 001
Yields: 8 quarts
Cooktime: 6 hours
Preparation Time: 1/2 hour
Categories: soup, broth, WAB, Vietnamese

10 lb bones, misc
1 ts whole cloves
1 stalk celery
10 carrots, medium
2 garlic, whole
1 tb basil, sweet, dry
1 tb cinamon
2 tb dark brown sugar
1 1/2 c soy sauce, dark
8 qt water

1. The original recipe did not mention par boiling the bones, I think
that is a better option so is added here.

2. Cut everything peel, skin, etc. and all into large chunks

3. Everyone in the pool (and a large stock pot pool at that)

4. bring to a boil

5. simmer for 5 hours

6. skim if needed but it is really best tasting if you wait to skim
until after unless you have huge fat deposits collecting.

7. pour the stock through what ever filter you use (china cap with
cheese cloth works here, so does a very fine screen china cap)

8. place the stock into the refrigerator in a container which you will
be able to slightly warm later.

9. wait until the fat has risen to the top and solidified (the broth
should also be a gelled solid mass)

10. skim the fat easily now, remelt the broth and put into your
storage containers. (see notes)

Rating: 3/5 stars

Source: Kim Ng On

Borrowed from a friend on a food forum, then modified after each batch
until we were satisfied it was "our pho broth #001"

Some ways we have used this stock for work meals:

1) remove the fat, cut into single serving size cubes placing each
monster cube into a zip top bag which can then be frozen.

2) remelt and pour into zip top bags which can then be frozen into
convenient lunch bag ice cubes that double as the tasty broth for that

3) remelt, reduce significantly and pour into ice cube trays 1-2 cubes
should work with some added water for a quick bowl.

4) eat warm

* The original recipe called for 1/4 c dark brown sugar, we found that
too sweet.

* Also called for 1 c soy sauce we found that slightly low. This may
be adjusted later as we are on to broth #2 in our quest


Monday, November 2, 2009

Noodle soup quest part one

My wife and I have been on a Pho quest recently with plans to continue for some time.

(Due to some recent changes we have decided to rename this a noodle soup quest instead of a Pho quest)

We make the pasta and stock from scratch, then eat until both are gone and redesign one or both for the next run.

So far we have 2 pasta recipes tried, 2 more on deck and 1 stock with another on deck for later today or tomorrow.

If you ideas for hand made (no electric machines available yet) pasta or stock either link or write them in the comments please :) If you are logged in you can send me an email as well.

I/we will post back here with our thoughts after we have made any that pass her "sounds good to me" test. I eat anything but citrus that does not eat me first at least once.

Last stock was 2lb pig and 2lb beef feet, 3lb ox tails and 2 pounds of marrow, 1 dozen whole cloves, ground cinnamon, soy sauce, brown sugar, etc. (recipe posted later when I have typed it up from my scribbled notes).

Pasta tried so far was a simple pirogi dough left-overs made into noodles with our hand roller, a simple wheat pasta, and the last of the packaged noodles in the house of various types.

We do not care if it is vegetarian, vegan, or meat laden. We have no specific ingredients to be avoided EXCEPT Citrus (lemons, limes, oranges, grapefruits, etc.) as I am deathly allergic to them.

So let the Asian style noodle soup recipes and ideas flow!!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Mocha Mousse (Pie)

There is a post later on that describes a bit of what this recipe format is...

MMMMM----- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm)

Title: Mocha mouse (pie)
Yields: 1 serving
Categories: WAB, dessert, treats

1 pk Yogurt starter
1/4 c. Undutched cocoa
1 oz. Unsweet chocolate
1 pk Unflavored geletain (optional)
1 3/4 c. Brown sugar
2 Chocolate pie crusts (optional)

SLOWLY Warm the cream, cocoa, chocolate, (optional gelatin if you will
not be able to serve frozen, desire a firmer mousse, etc.) together
to 180 degrees and hold for two minutes. DO NOT BOIL (see over whipping below)

Cool to 110 degrees, add yogurt starter. incubate in a yogurt maker or
a quart jar in water bath (double boiler type setup) at 110 to 114
degrees for 8 to 12 hours (depending on desired tang, longer time =
more tangy but you will also have some solid bits of cheese start to
form after 8 hours)

Add the brown sugar stirring slowly until disolved (but don't whip the
cream yet!), refrigerate for 8 hours. If you want a warm mousse you
can whip now and serve but you will not get a very firm mousse even
with added gelatin served warm for obvious reasons.

Whip to stiff peaks, BE CAREFUL not to over whip .

You are now ready to serve if bowl is the desired delivery vehicle,
spoon into two pie shells or cones, etc., freeze until served.

Source: my head

Note: overwhipping is not always a bad thing, the butter you separate
from the mousse is pretty darned good on its own and the liquid left
over is pretty good too!

Originally designed for my final project for school, and then a friend
suggested fermenting the cream and after some experimentation this is
the result of that.

*** you must use whole real dairy cream not the kind you buy in most
supermarkets, and un-dutched cocoa (not processed with alkali) or the mouse
will not set up correctly.

The thickeners will cause pockets of goo in the final product or you
will have a soup unless you double the gelatin depending on how much
of the cream is thickeners.

The alkali used to lighten cocoa will kill some of the bacteria needed
to make the final product awesome and can cause spoiling in some

Most supermarkets carry "un-dutched" or "dark cocoa" cocoa, and health
food stores or local small dairies will have real cream. In my area
the non-BIG-chain grocers also have cream without the caragenan or
other thickeners.

Yogurt starter is available in health food stores in freeze dried
packets, or you can use LIVE yogurt (1 TB = 1 pk) with no flavoring
(some vanilla yogurts will also work but sugar in even small amount
can cause problems and will cause major problems in large quantities
while fermenting)

If you prefer a softer mouse you can keep in the refrigerator however
this will not keep as long, and is much harder to handle.

In the refrigerator it behaves just like whipped cream unless you add
the gelatin.

In the freezer it behaves like ice cream without the gelatin.