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You are here: MacNN Forums > Community > MacNN Lounge > The Stouffer’s Report - COVID19 Culinary Experiments

The Stouffer’s Report - COVID19 Culinary Experiments (Page 3)
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andi*pandi
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May 12, 2020, 10:21 AM
 
looks easier than fidding with (or finding) baking yeast.
     
Thorzdad
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May 12, 2020, 10:41 AM
 
You folks having trouble finding ice cream or yeast?
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andi*pandi
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May 12, 2020, 11:05 AM
 
There was a run on yeast which I think precipitated the sourdough craze. Not sure how it is now.

Ice cream we can find, but for folks who suddenly have more cream than they know what to do with, making ice cream is a good option! I ordered a few pints from our local ice cream shop and picked them up curbside this weekend.
     
subego  (op)
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May 12, 2020, 11:28 AM
 
Originally Posted by andi*pandi View Post
There was a run on yeast which I think precipitated the sourdough craze. Not sure how it is now.
I read this unintentionally hilarious Medium article wherein a millennial hipster complained about all the bread baking casuals ruining her life.
     
Laminar
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May 12, 2020, 01:33 PM
 
So good. Rich and creamy. Not quite like homemade ice cream in one of those loud stirry things, but a little closer to some kind of soft serve/whipped cream hybrid. Just shook up four individual batches to enjoy this afternoon. I grabbed a four pack of root beer from a local brewery so we’ll have floats.
     
Laminar
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May 12, 2020, 01:44 PM
 
I’ve had a big jar of yeast in the freezer for a couple years now that I work out of for pizza crust. The stuff is still active so far.
     
andi*pandi
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May 12, 2020, 01:54 PM
 
We found a packet of dry yeast in the cupboard from 2012 that... was not active. A jar in the freezer you say? Hmm.
     
subego  (op)
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May 13, 2020, 09:36 AM
 
Originally Posted by Laminar View Post
So good. Rich and creamy. Not quite like homemade ice cream in one of those loud stirry things, but a little closer to some kind of soft serve/whipped cream hybrid. Just shook up four individual batches to enjoy this afternoon. I grabbed a four pack of root beer from a local brewery so we’ll have floats.
Sounds like it would go very well in a float.
     
Thorzdad
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May 13, 2020, 10:19 AM
 
Hmmm...That ice cream recipe sounds like a nice project. Think using a submersion blender would work as well (better?) than shaking the jar?
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Laminar
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May 13, 2020, 06:04 PM
 
Ooo, forgot about the immersion blender I bought last year to do homemade mayo. I'll have to give that a shot. We ran out of vanilla though, so it will have to wait until the next grocery trip.

I bought some steaks to cook up for my birthday. Usually I'll pick up something fresh day-of to cook, but we're limiting ourselves to one grocery trip a week. So we made them a couple days early. Cubed potatoes, chopped salad kit, fresh strawberries. I had it Ron Swanson style, with scotch, some Glenlivet Nadura.



It was nice enough that we ate outside.
     
andi*pandi
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May 13, 2020, 06:17 PM
 
Nice! We are having pork chops florentine. Well, improvised, no recipe. We'll see.
     
mindwaves
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May 18, 2020, 12:51 AM
 
Wish I could post pictures here also, but I made a nice Chinese claypot meal with spareribs and lotus root with fermented tofu and Grandpa's chicken sauce. Very nice. Leftovers for lunch and tomorrow's dinner.
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subego  (op)
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May 23, 2020, 11:04 PM
 
Wanted to try some non-pasta offerings from the big S, so it’s a Meat Loaf vs. Salisbury Steak deathmatch.

The “steak” comes with mac and cheese, which I somehow like more than the mac and cheese meal. Less baked casserole and more like from a box. Loaf comes with mashed potatoes, which are serviceable.

I like the sauce for the “steak”, but it can’t cover the taste of some pretty low grade “beef”.

Meat loaf is another one of those things where I like the idea more than the thing. I almost never get it, because I find it any good so rarely.

Well, like the lasagna, the big S pulled this one off. It’s not great or anything, but I don’t regret risking a meal on it either. The sauce is probably providing a lot of cover. It’s not bad, but it proudly declares ketchup as the main ingredient. I’d have preferred they lied about this.

So, in a surprising upset, the Meat Loaf wins.
     
andi*pandi
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May 24, 2020, 03:01 PM
 
Ketchup is a common ingredient in meatloaf, if at least for the "glaze". I certainly used it in the meatloaf I made last night, which was pretty good. I get the good ketchup though without corn syrup.
     
subego  (op)
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May 24, 2020, 03:25 PM
 
Loved it as a kid, but now find the idea pretty disgusting.

I’ll go with the flow when it comes to things like a McDonald’s hamburger or apparently meat loaf, but otherwise... ew.
     
Laminar
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Jun 4, 2020, 11:23 AM
 
A bit late, but here's a root beer float.



We got into the habit of adding food coloring to the ice cream as we mixed it, it was fun. We also added cocoa powder to one and made chocolate ice cream, also tasty.

ALSO big ups to Thorzdad for suggesting the immersion blender. I pulled mine out of the back of the cabinet, snapped the whisk attachment in place, and made super short work of the ice cream. We're still calling it "Shake-a shake-a ice cream" but without the shaking now.
     
andi*pandi
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Jun 4, 2020, 11:40 AM
 
yum.
     
mindwaves
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Jun 9, 2020, 08:34 PM
 
Root beer float is amazing.

I made poached eggs today, but I cracked one egg into a small bowl filled with water and steamed it for a few mins. Removed the egg using a silicon spatula and it was nice and round.
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Brien
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Jun 12, 2020, 09:59 PM
 
Meatloaf is basically a sloppy Joe log.
     
subego  (op)
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Jun 13, 2020, 02:28 PM
 
I kinda feel that’s like saying a baked potato is a hash brown log.
     
andi*pandi
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Jun 13, 2020, 08:00 PM
 
Indian food cooking, should have started prep much earlier... but it smells great. Butter chicken, curry vegetables, tomato rice. store bought naan.
     
subego  (op)
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Jun 14, 2020, 05:11 AM
 
Little while ago I decided I could loosen up on the paranoid a bit and start back in on delivery, so I’m making up for lost time.

Almost went with Indian, but switched to Thai last second. There’s a place here where you can get the white rice cooked in chicken fat, which makes anything it goes with more awesome. A panang beef in this case.
     
ghporter
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Jun 14, 2020, 04:23 PM
 
Originally Posted by Brien View Post
Meatloaf is basically a sloppy Joe log.
It can be.

But I've had some meatloaf that was quite different from the run of the mill "extended hamburger" fare. Don't count on a restaurant's meatloaf to be anything beyond the Sloppy Joe log. But at home...

Start with ground chuck, quite lean. Add in a variety of seasonings (we are big on garlic, along with a little paprika, but use your imagination), some oatmeal and (I know it sounds odd) instant mashed potato flakes to increase the volume without being just a filler. Add a couple of eggs for each pound of ground meat. Mix in an envelope of Lipton's Instant Onion Mushroom soup mix per pound, and bake as you would a pedestrian meatloaf.

While it's in the oven, sauté fresh onions and sliced fresh mushrooms. Make a sauce; my favorite is a riff on brown gravy with diced fresh tomatoes - I like roma tomatoes because they usually have real tomato flavor. Cook the tomatoes in the gravy so they're soft but not mushy.

Get the meatloaf out of the pan. Apply some of the sauce to the top, add the sautéd onions and mushrooms, then add more sauce. Slice about 1 1/4" thick and serve with a little more sauce. Goes great with baked potatoes.

Now I'm hungry...

Glenn -----OTR/L, MOT, Tx
     
Thorzdad
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Jun 14, 2020, 04:41 PM
 
The best meatloaf is the day-old one that you slice thick, pan fry, and make a sandwich with.
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mindwaves
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Jun 14, 2020, 08:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by Thorzdad View Post
The best meatloaf is the day-old one that you slice thick, pan fry, and make a sandwich with.
I kind of agree, but cold meatloaf is also good in a sandwich.
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Laminar
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Jun 15, 2020, 08:23 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Little while ago I decided I could loosen up on the paranoid a bit and start back in on delivery, so I’m making up for lost time.

Almost went with Indian, but switched to Thai last second. There’s a place here where you can get the white rice cooked in chicken fat, which makes anything it goes with more awesome. A panang beef in this case.
One of the (the only?) food bloggers I follow (https://iowagirleats.com/) nearly always cooks rice in chicken broth instead of water, it's something that I've started doing as well. It's reeeally good.
     
andi*pandi
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Jun 15, 2020, 10:43 AM
 
I've done that with leftover broth... it is good.
     
mindwaves
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Jun 18, 2020, 10:14 PM
 
I never do that. I always cook rice with water and maybe a piece of garlic on top. Rice is used as cleanser -- something you eat between your other food to clean your mouth and adding broth doesn't do that. And plain rice is also delicious.

Has anyone stayed at hotels recently? Right where I am, there are very very few cases and no local cases for a long time but hotels are still hurting. You can get some incredible deals on some hotels, half off in some cases.

edit: Booked a Courtyard by Marriott hotel here and with taxes, it is $78! It is also in a decent area.
( Last edited by mindwaves; Jun 18, 2020 at 11:47 PM. )
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subego  (op)
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Jun 18, 2020, 11:38 PM
 
Keeping them separate makes sense to me if the dish is relatively dry, but if half the dish is liquid, I prefer it to be mixed, if only so it can be eaten with a single utensil.

I should also add, most East Asian restaurants here use the cheapest, crap rice possible. In fact, I’ll usually not eat any of it with a dry dish.

Indian restaurants will have rice that’s decent on its own.
     
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Jun 18, 2020, 11:46 PM
 
Saffron rice is the best.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
Laminar
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Jun 19, 2020, 08:50 AM
 
Originally Posted by mindwaves View Post
I never do that. I always cook rice with water and maybe a piece of garlic on top. Rice is used as cleanser -- something you eat between your other food to clean your mouth and adding broth doesn't do that. And plain rice is also delicious.
The last couple dishes we've made with rice involve putting a bunch of stuff in the skillet together and letting it simmer so the rice can cook - one is just chicken thighs, a jar of mango salsa, and a cup of rice. It's awesome, and it's even better re-heated since the rice absorbs more of the salsa and chicken flavors in the fridge overnight. The other is ground beef, a shallot, a cup of salsa, and a packet of taco seasoning, add some cheese, serve over tortilla chips with avocado on top. Crunchy Taco Hamburger Helper. In those cases, the rice isn't a cleanser between bites of pure, clean food, but it adds volume and body and is meant to absorb the flavors of whatever it's accompanying.
     
Laminar
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Jun 19, 2020, 08:53 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Keeping them separate makes sense to me if the dish is relatively dry, but if half the dish is liquid, I prefer it to be mixed, if only so it can be eaten with a single utensil.
Sushi restaurants I've been to will usually have decent rice, served like an ice cream scoop with toasted sesame seeds on top. I'll eat that plain.

We also finally ditched the boxed instant rice a couple years ago and do Jasmine rice now. It's honestly not that much more time, and the difference in flavor and texture is huuuuge.
     
OAW
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Jun 19, 2020, 09:06 AM
 
I can’t even recall the last time I prepared rice with just water. I’ve used chicken stock (which has less sodium than broth) for years. IMO rice by itself is flavorless and boring. But it is a good “empty vessel” that can absorb the flavors of whatever it is prepared with.

OAW
     
andi*pandi
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Jun 19, 2020, 12:30 PM
 
mango salsa + chicken sounds good to me. We still use the box rice, or packets for quinoia etc.

We liked homemade spaghetti and meatballs and sauce so much we made it again this week. Last night was quiche, not as quick as it could have been due to using fresh broccoli, but with onion and ham and cheese pretty good. I cheated and used store crust.

Tip of the day: I bought an ice cube tray specifically for putting chopped onion/veg/leftover herbs in. I've been using a tupperware but chipping away at frozen onion is a pita so cubes will be easier. I hate chopping onions so doing it all at once and freezing it is a timesaver, and less food waste.
     
subego  (op)
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Jun 19, 2020, 02:37 PM
 
Originally Posted by Laminar View Post
Sushi restaurants I've been to will usually have decent rice, served like an ice cream scoop with toasted sesame seeds on top. I'll eat that plain.

We also finally ditched the boxed instant rice a couple years ago and do Jasmine rice now. It's honestly not that much more time, and the difference in flavor and texture is huuuuge.
Good point! I wasn’t thinking Japanese.

While there are Japanese dishes I like, it’s my least favorite in terms of EA cuisine. Don’t like fish*, so I don’t really like sushi, except the non fish kind. Tamago, kappa maki, etc.

Going East far enough it becomes West, I love spam musubi.


*It’s more I don’t want to risk a meal on it. I like, say, a Filet-o-Fish, which I’m told means I’ll like better fish. Caught a walleye once and had it cooked within the hour. That was good. As a blast from the past, I used to love Arthur Treacher’s. I also love shrimp.
     
 
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