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Posts by ChicagoTerry

I think the evolution of "chili powder" in the US is probably something akin to the evolution of "curry powder" in the Commonwealth countries. People tasted Mexican or Tex-Mex food and wanted to get something of the flavor at home but the ingredients were unavailable or somehow scary/confusing/overwhelming so companies like McCormick filled the gap. When I was growing up in the 1960s & 70s, food here was so bland and uninteresting, the liberal use of chili powder was...
If you are making a traditional Polish beet borscht, you start with a fermented beet juice base called kvass.   I just realized how old this thread is.
There are a couple of Vietnamese gift/plant shops right where I get off the train every day and occasionally one of them will have kaffir lime trees out on the sidewalk for sale. I always balk because they are expensive--$40 - $60 and I understand overwintering them in a dry apartment with poor air circulation is often the kiss of death. I'd hate to spend that kind of money on a plant only to kill it the first winter.
Chilies are a "new-world" food that have traveled all over the world over the past 500 years and there are 100s of varieties. In the States and in most ethnic markets chili "powders" are specific to the type of chili. At the Mexican markets in my neighborhood there are ancho, cayenne, de arbol, guajillo, chipotle, mulatto, and morito powders--and that's just for starters. At the Middle-Eastern market there are Aleppo pepper and Urfa Biber (Turkish) chili flakes. A flight...
"Garam Masala" is a blend, not a specific spice. It varies widely from region to region and from family to family. Indian markets sell both powdered mixes and mixes of whole spices in bags that you can roast and grind yourself. The ingredients are limited and usually lean heavily toward ground coriander and cumin seeds. Homemade garam masalas can have an almost infinite number of ingredients.   "Chili powder" is also a blend.   There is what in English is called a...
Ruth Reichl--Comfort Me With Apples & Tender at the Bone Laurie Colwin--Home Cooking: A Writer in the Kitchen & More Home Cooking Elizabeth David--South Wind Through the Kitchen Anya Von Bremzen--Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking     Not chefs but extremely appreciative eaters who also happen to be excellent (and funny) writers:   A. J. Liebling--Between Meals Calvin Trillin--The Tummy Trilogy Jim Harrison--The Raw and the Cooked
Dijon mustard. A good, healthy dollop. Salt, pepper. Anchovies are not a bad idea, either.
If you want it to stick, then yes, sesame oil. Or a touch of peanut butter.   However, I live in a very SE Asian part of Chicago and eat a lot of SE Asian food. Mostly the dressings do not adhere to the various salads I've eaten over the years. And, the cabbage or shredded papaya or whatever does not seem especially wilted. You just kind of have to swish your next forkful around the dressing pooled under the vegetables. Could be why the vegetables are usually shredded or...
2 thoughts:   Many thousands of Hungarians immigrated to WV to work in the coal mines in the 1st part of the 20th century, no doubt clutching packets of paprika as they boarded the boats. (My family's story, in a nutshell.) I'm guessing that is a major way chili powder made its way into WV cooking.  When I was a kid, the goulash we ate was more brown than red from whatever kind of paprika it was my grandmother used.   @Mike9   Don't know if you've seen this, but I...
Never mind!   Just realized how old this thread is!
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