Tuesday, January 16, 2007


Been working on several food projects:

Slow roasted pork: Tresierras had a good deal on some mystery pork roast at 99c per pound, so I bought it, rubbed it with spices per my Wolfgang Puck rub recipe, and roasted it @ 300 degrees in the oven. The meat was almost 3 pounds, which makes me estimate that at that temperature, 3 lbs will take about 3-4 hours to roast to "falling apart" status. Turned out delicious! Nice to use those aluminum roasting pans for convenience.

Vinegar: I've been reading about making homemade vinegar, so I went out and bought some unpasteurized, unfiltered vinegar from the local health foods store. I chose Bragg's brand, although there were several others, but all as apple cider vinegar. Anyway, the idea is to combine the vinegar with leftover wine to make wine vinegar, both red and white wine. We'll see how it goes.

Sourdough starter: so I'm trying to make some sourdough bread. I started with my grandma's bread recipe, and have let the mixture ferment for over a week, feeding it flour & water 2x daily. I ended up taking a cup off that mixture, starting another batch to make it less sour. Then I took a cup of that and added it to a regular bread recipe. We'll see how it turns out. The "batter" tastes sour, but I wonder if the yeast in it is active enough to give it sufficient lift (I somehow doubt it). Flour makes for cheap food experiments, nonetheless.

Greek salad: my friends Dale and Leah were recounting their trip to Greece yesterday and telling me about their "Greek salad" experience. Unlike in the U.S., that salad has no lettuce in it. It contains: chopped cucumbers, chopped tomatoes, thinly sliced red onion, a thick piece of feta cheese doused in olive oil and oregano. Sounds pretty damn good to me. I've always thought American "greek salad", including the kind my mom makes, as somewhat insipid.

Caramelized onions: made a nice caramelized onion "jam" last week by slow cooking 3 onions in olive oil with salt & pepper until meltingly soft, then adding a tablespoon or two of good balsamic vinegar and cooking that down. Deee-licious.

Well, enough foodie ramblings for today.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Grandma's bread update

OK, so some things I learned:

After the bread cools down almost completely, store it in a plastic bag. The extra moisture that gets released will actually make the crust softer.

That said, the crust should still be softer.

I just had some of that bread yesterday, which has been stored in my fridge in a large Ziploc bag since I made it, and it was totally delicious and still moist, but not wet, with no sign of mold anywhere.