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Posts by Ellen Porter

It seems to me boiling fresh pasta - and if so, for how long, is a matter of personal preference. I would not in lasagna because of it being baked, I'd want the noodles to have more substance than would be possible if they were boiled then baked.   "Italian" food in the USA would almost certainly be Americanized. There are so many regional differences within Italy. For instance, northern Italians don't use much tomato/marinara at all. Bologna is in central/northern...
It seems to me boiling fresh pasta - and if so, for how long, is a matter of personal preference. I would not in lasagna because of it being baked, I'd want the noodles to have more substance than would be possible if they were boiled then baked.   "Italian" food in the USA would almost certainly be Americanized. There are so many regional differences within Italy. For instance, northern Italians don't use much tomato/marinara at all. Bologna is in central/northern...
I use olive oil for just about everything, however deep frying isn't one of the techniques I use often.   For deep-frying and baking, I prefer extra-light flavor olive oil. For other uses, I prefer extra-virgin.
Koukokovagia, do you mean those who aren't on the West Coast? If you live outside of the specific areas I mentioned, southwest United States and California, and still find a Mexican restaurant that appeals to you, by all means eat there. Or make your own. But unless you are from Mexico, it's not authentic, nor is my Latino, but U.S-born neighbors'. However it might be even better.   If I were to move away from southern/central California and not to the the southwest,...
I think we have to make it clear that even an at-home chef like me sees a vast difference between Spanish (Castelian) and Mexican food. I don't know if anyone responding to you so far is Latino, but my Latino friends, who are Mexican-Americans, would be offended if you called them or their favorite foods Spanish. You wouldn't have asked this way if you wanted to know about Cuban food, right?   Mexican food here in southern California varies as much as more...
I see a case for "authentic" to some degree. I usually won't eat Mexican food outside of southwestern United States and California. Because in the rest of the country, a five-star gourmet restaurant probably isn't going to cook Mexican food as "authentic" as the guy with a food cart in Los Angeles or Phoenix. I exempt San Francisco from  an expectation of good Mexican food, because there I would more likely be happy with authentic Chinese or Italian food. I would...
I was not aware of this function. Having now looked at it, I would say at this time there doesn't really appear to be anything I'd be interested in buying or trading for. Unless that guy that's trying to sell cars on them really does only want $1!   As for my cookbooks, I have given a few to thrift stores, but judging by the "What's The Most Essential Cookbook" thread, what I gave away is not what Chef Talk readers would want.
Where I live there are some places that have courses for home cooks. I never went because I never found the time, but they sounded like a good way to learn to make some yummy food.
Wow. No, I don't think I have room in my freezer for doing things like that. My husband's sister-in-law is very organized with her camping meals, the one time I camped with her, she had some yummy stuff that she obviously worked on at home before freezing and taking. She and my husband's brother do a lot more camping than we do. I have, on some occasions where we were staying where I could cook my own meals, brought food from home to do so. Some of those times though, my...
I have and love JOC, but it would not necessarily have been my first choice for a home cook. My "go to" as a young woman was "Sunset Easy Basics," which was only published back then, and of course Sunset is in western United States, but great book if you can get your hands on a used copy. I also find the comprehensive Betty Crocker, Better Homes and Gardens, and Pillsbury cookbooks to be very helpful. For a bit more advanced cooking, including French deserts, Julia...
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