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Anna Phor

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About Anna Phor

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  1. My husband is a keen bread baker and his birthday is coming up. I'm looking for a book that has some interesting extended techniques but that's suitable for home baking. I'm seeing a lot of volumes that get rave reviews, but when I look at the recipes, I see quantities and yields that strike me as much more suited to commercial production than to home baking and eating. Any good suggestions? Suggestions also welcome for other good gifts for a baking enthusiast!
  2. Oh, that's awful. My son would practice his French every week buying a croissant from them at the Dupont market. They were so sweet and patient with him.
  3. District Commons serves beef on weck on Tuesdays. I haven't tried it, so can't vouch for the quality.
  4. Can anyone suggest a reliable recipe for whole wheat pasta? Google reveals mostly consensus on ingredients (w/w flour, eggs, olive oil, salt) but very little on the various proportions.
  5. Amsterdam -- if you are transferring through here en route to somewhere else, hit up the gift shop and get a chunk of Reypenaer cheese. It's available elsewhere in The Netherlands so you don't have to buy it in the airport, but if you are ONLY in the airport, it's to be recommended. AMS
  6. Thanks to all for the suggestions. The avocado ones sound interesting, but also, uh, a little challenging for my target audience (plus one of the birthday kids doesn't like avocado at all). I ended up going the simple route; subbing earth balance margarine for the butter. Worked fine. Didn't taste as great as the buttercream but was drowned out by all the sugar, anyway.
  7. I'm decorating a birthday cake for a party for a child who has severe food allergies. My usual MO for kids' cakes is buttercream covered with marshmallow fondant. The marshmallow fondant is fine -- the buttercream, not so much. I'm looking for a functional equivalent (the point of the buttercream is to float the fondant on the cake, more or less) that's dairy and nut free. Coconut is okay; soy is okay; tree nuts, peanuts and any dairy is out. Eggs are fine, too. I've seen a number of online recipes that *might* work but would like some more expert/tried-and-true advice, if anyone has it. So far my best solutions are either a coconut-oil based frosting else one made with a soy-based margarine. I think the former would probably taste better but I'm worried about the melting point of the coconut oil being too low.
  8. I shop at Dupont weekly throughout the winter, and have been doing so since the first winter it was open ('02? '03?) and we lived on kale, collards, and apples. I typically buy 70-90% of our produce and at least half our meat at Dupont. I very very occasionally shop weekday markets (Foggy Bottom, usually, although today for the first time I went to the WH). I'm not a regular weekday market shopper because (1) I have to fit a trip to the market into my work schedule, and often things just come up, and (2) I have to get everything home on metro and sometimes also a bus. I would not be likely to shop regularly at a less-than-weekly market. I will buy carrots all winter long, though.
  9. Last night I broke my wooden chopping board in half while crushing garlic. Recommendations for good replacement? I'd like wood (could maybe be convinced on bamboo?). It doesn't have to be pretty but should stand up to a lot of wear and tear.
  10. Aw, I love Zoo Bar! It's like a favorite comfy sweater of a bar--you can hang on to it for years and years through different stages of life and it still fits just right. I popped in on and off--maybe a couple of times a year--through my late 20s and early 30s. It was always a great place to grab a drink after a Saturday afternoon wandering around the zoo before heading down to The Reef rooftop bar (RIP). It was the first bar my kid ever went to. He must have been about 2 weeks old. I remember a visit about a year or so later where we made a makeshift high chair by strapping a baby carrier to whatever booster seat they gave us just so he wouldn't escape. These days it's a reliable stop for a decent meal post-Zoo visit. There's always room inside, the prices are very reasonable, and the kid's menu hits the spot.
  11. This is fascinating and very cool. I suspect that the best mode of delivery varies with the experience of the cook with the techniques involved. I often do completely memorize a recipe before I make it--or rather, what I do is mentally walk through the process, often shifting around the order of the steps to make the entire thing flow more smoothly. Then I refer to the written recipe for quantities. It's not so much memorization as it is creating a plan of attack for the work. I only do this, however, with recipes where I'm very familiar with the techniques involved. I will say that I much prefer having all the ingredients grouped together. Usually my first step is "check that all the ingredients are on hand" -- some books (Joy of Cooking, looking at you!) list the ingredients (set aside, in boldface) within the narrative of the recipe. Which is a pain if you are skimming and forget to turn the page, then get half way through the recipe and don't have any wombat oil on hand.
  12. Here's a different take on readers' tomato recipes, from the Guardian. The slow-roasted tomatoes with buffalo mozzarella is excellent. http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/jul/26/tomato-slow-roasted-soup-recipe-swap-felicity-cloake
  13. Let's say a person was too pressed for time to do any serious canning or jamming this summer. Let's say that same person just wanted to stuff jars full of summer fruit and top them off with booze. So far have 4-5 peaches sitting in about 2/3 of a bottle of vodka, well covered. I plan to do something similar with blueberries and gin (and maybe a little lemon peel and/or ginger). Per the advice of the internets, I froze the blueberries first. What do I need to know to keep this safe? I'm assuming high-test booze is pretty safe, but could I do this with, say brandy?
  14. So after letting the leftovers sit overnight in the fridge, I tucked some of the chicken into my kid's lunchbox today. As a cold chicken, it was pretty good--the smoke flavor came through a lot more. I might be adding this to my picnic repertoire--pick up a half chicken the night before, and pop it in a cooler with some cooked corn & salad.
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