Jump to content
Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble

The Tapatalk plugin has been re-enabled. If you have any issues with using the plugin please post in the link below. Thank you


  • Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Syzygies last won the day on July 27 2017

Syzygies had the most liked content!

Community Reputation

310 Excellent


About Syzygies

  • Rank
    Senior Member
  • Birthday 11/29/1955


  • Location
    New York, NY and Concord, CA
  • Occupation

Profile Information

  • Gender:

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

  1. Syzygies

    "Red Lump"

    Our Fogo charcoal arrived, and I used a chimney's worth in my KK to first grill burgers on a baking steel, then to roast a Spanish potato, onion, salt, black pepper, pimenton mixture in a cazuela with the residual fire. Like pool; always have a plan for what to do with the white ball next. The Fogo did spark, especially when I fanned the fire with a Milwaukee M18 blower tool. Fun to watch, but no need for a welding helmet. Very dense, not very smoky at all, hotter perhaps than other fuels. No objectionable flavors at all, and a very mild pleasant flavor imparted to the potato mixture. More like "Of course we cook with fire!" than "Can you pick out those hickory notes?" (I'm notoriously fussy, the guy who came up with the cast iron smoke pot whose wife won't let him use smoke any other way now.) As I mainly wanted to cook outside, I like this subtle profile. Recommended? Yes. I prefer coffee charcoal from Dennis but we can't get that. Worth the price? Depends on your other options. Worth a try. Of course we cook with fire!
  2. Syzygies

    "Red Lump"

    Fogo Charcoal
  3. Syzygies

    French Fry Press

    A contender for our favorite use of sous vide is to cook plain peeled, quartered potatoes sous vide > 85 C for 75 to 90 minutes starting cold. Then dry on a rack, perhaps involving a fan. Then pan fry with attitude in ghee. My intuition runs against using fat in the sous vide step. They certainly won't dry the same. Have you tried this both ways? I see how this could be your best opportunity to introduce fat, using an air cooker later. For anyone not using an air cooker, one should at least ask the question. Tonight I made Ni├žoise Stockfish, and the recipe called for cooked potatoes. I did this, making a second packet at the same time to chill in the fridge for a different meal. (Ok, I misread the recipe.)
  4. Syzygies

    Looking for Grate Advice

    It depends on the wrench. If the curve matches the grate, then nothing else comes close. (Old-timers will confirm I try everything.) If the curve is more square, this isn't your tool.
  5. Syzygies

    Low Country Boil

    Looks spot on to me, from my time in Georgia.
  6. Syzygies

    Everyday Misc Cooking Photos w/ details

    I have perhaps eight in two kitchens, and I always choose best fit. I do like the 4 qt as a good starter.
  7. Syzygies

    BBQ get together

    Are the aluminum foil ear muffs so the United States CIA can't hear their thoughts about being roasted?
  8. Syzygies

    Hot Sauce

    Wine? That's interesting. I've used distilled water before. I've kept some batches and discarded some batches where there's a bit of mold. On one hand I don't believe there's a health risk. I can imagine I can taste the difference, but this could be psychological. What I certainly would bet a massive sum on is this: By the time one sees a bit of visible mold on top, there are mold spores that would show up under a microscope, throughout the mixture.
  9. Syzygies

    Hot Sauce

    I love fermenting hot sauce; I've been doing it for years. I do struggle with the ideal technique. You don't get mold, exposing the jar contents to air filtered through cheesecloth? I've always used some sort of one-way fermentation valve, like making beer. Now I have an argon tank (for saving part bottles of wine), I'm curious if a layer of argon is as easy/effective as those who use a layer of oil.
  10. Syzygies


    Good eye! I totally missed the lighter fluid, looking through the photos.
  11. Syzygies

    KK as Steam Oven for Bread

    "Cracking" grains is a separate problem; one can buy dedicated devices. Or improvise, e.g. an industrial blender or a Thai mortar and pestle. I like to get the grain size down on something like corn, whatever they say. Or, were I to dare using just the KoMo, I'd do two passes, starting very coarse. My first grain mill was completely manual. Enough flour for pasta required twenty minutes and a shower. I keep it for exactly problems like turning corn into polenta. A related problem: If one cooks with turmeric, there are actually several varieties available dried e.g. at Kalustyan's. North India favors one, the south favors another. There is a spectacular difference grinding turmeric in a spice grinder, even to save months at a time. However, one needs to smash the turmeric down to a manageable size or it destroys the grinder. I use a mortar and pestle (and find pieces 30 feet away).
  12. Syzygies

    Kitchen aid mixer

    I've had a burger every day since. I just ruined another dish I used to be able to eat out. "Chopped" is a misnomer. At first I'd slice as far as I could, then some final mincing with a chopping motion. I've come to think of even that as mashing the meat. After slicing along all three axis, one can wad together the meat and slice another pass or two, as if slicing salumi. No thwacking the knife on the board, all careful drawing the knife past the meat. It is worth a try. Nevertheless, one of my favorite scenes from "Being John Malkovitch" is the documentary clip where Sean Penn struggles with whether he should follow John into puppetry. Being John Malkovich (10/11) Movie CLIP - John Malkovich Becomes a Puppeteer
  13. Syzygies

    Kitchen aid mixer

    I've been aware most of my life of the idea that the best "ground" meat is hand chopped, and I classified this as a bit over the top. While I'm no stranger to "over the top" (we grind our own flour, well worth it), I'd been blocking out this idea out of some misguided sense of self preservation. Nevertheless, I do have some amazing (Shapton Glass) sharpening stones for my knives. On Sunday, I bought a 3 1/2 rolled beef roast from one of my favorite butchers. A non-standard name, but the end they cut me was from near where rib eye steaks come from. I cleaned it up completely, removing all fat that wasn't marbling, saving 2 1/2 lbs of "steaks". These I cooked sous vide, then finished over coffee charcoal from Dennis, then sliced against the grain keeping the four distinct cuts in separate piles. It was a contender for the best steak of my life. Aside from the discarded fat and tissue, I salvaged bits of meat to make one hand chopped burger. It too was amazing. Remember that one simply needs a burger to hold together as it cooks; the juices congeal, so this takes less than one would think. In comparison, any grinder (even working with partially frozen chunks and a prechilled grinder) makes a massacre of the meat. Hand chopping has a lightness impossible to realize with any grinder. My protocol, moving forward, will be to plan for burgers and steaks, from one purchase of a hunk of beef. We were at a ranch party near Mariposa, CA two weeks ago where they served rib eye steaks to 80 people. How much reinforcement does it take for the idea to stick that ribeye steak is two cuts, and one is actually spectacularly better than the other? This was a big enough pile of meat served for anyone who wanted to get this idea straight. The dream scenario would be to rob this cut for steak night, and hand cut the rest into great burgers.
  14. Syzygies

    Cars you have owned that made you smile

    About 110,000. My mechanic is awesome, he's hoping for 200,000 despite it being German, but I don't drive that much.
  15. Syzygies

    Cars you have owned that made you smile

    Here's my 2000 VW GTI VR6, back when it was new (and I was newer). Still driving it...