Nathan Brazil's Profile

Display Name: Nathan Brazil
Member Since: 8/30/10

Latest Comments...

I have experienced and rectified many of the mistakes in this list, over the years. That's one of the advantages of being OLD. However, I still fail at #2. Perhaps that's one of the disadvantages of being OLD. I think I know everything, and I skip ahead. Perhaps it's because I use recipes as "suggestions", and improvise the rest (unless I'm baking). Whatever... I love food.


The 40 Most Common Cooking Mistakes
Cooking Light

2/11/12 11:22 PM

I'm not a huge fan of granite. The house I'm renting is all granite and stainless steel in the kitchen. I'm a native Vermonter, so you'd think granite would make me feel at home. Not.

My biggest complaint is the color. I despise black counters, and granite seems to come in black a lot. This is a problem of style and form over function, and I have a problem abiding that. I am a cook, and I want a kitchen that both looks good, and works well. If I can't see a spill or a stain on my dratted black counter, then the function has failed. I also hate stainless steel, but that's another story...


The Renter's Dilemma: Ugly, Ubiquitous Granite Countertops
1/12/12 07:39 PM

I use Kosher salt when cooking, unless the recipe calls for a finer grain. For baking, I stick to regular commercial table salt. For the table I like Himalayan pink simply because it looks nice. I remain unconvinced that anything but truffle or smoked salt truly impart any flavor without being overbearing.


Which Kinds of Salt (And How Many!) Are In Your Pantry?
1/4/12 06:03 PM

I use a brand called Ariston, sold at a cooking store nearby. It comes in refillable bottles, for $9.99. It's tasty, and dare I say, expeditious. I too buy much finer stuff for finishing, and accenting.


In Search of a Good Everyday Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/4/12 05:57 PM

Nice post. I've been traveling for work for thirty-five years, so I've had some experience in this type of relationship.

I am curious though: what happens when you press shift/love?


Long Distance Relationships: Version 2.0
11/27/11 09:09 PM

I don't want to sound shrill, or grumpy, but I think your inclusion of that speaker thing is way off base. Please don't assume that anyone else around that campfir or swimming hole wants to listen to your tunes. A good geek outdoorsman would know that rule #1 is to respect other people's experience as much as yours.


Outfitting the Geek Outdoorsman
9/1/11 07:23 PM

I live in MA, but I travel extensively for work. States without Sunday sales are a pain for a road guy.

We work six days a week, and often forget to stock up. ABC states tend to have the worst selection of distilled spirits. Pennsylvania is HORRIBLE. Their archaic beer laws make it impossible for retailers to stock anything interesting. (I love the state in every other way :-).) In Ohio you can buy half proof spirits in grocery stores, and the good stuff in the state stores. What the...?

Here in Western MA there are numerous excellent liquor stores; however, they cannot stock everything. If I want a new bottle of Carpano Antica, I may have to order it online... But wait a minute! I can't have alcoholic beverages shipped to MA!! This is something the article failed to address. Other states have similar laws.

Sigh. There is no perfect solution.


Buying Liquor: State vs. Private Stores
Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits

3/11/11 06:56 PM

Big dittos re: handheld mixer vs. immersion blender. Very different. I'm not sure I'd want batter made with the latter :-/.

On the other hand, most commenters seem to discount the scale. Big mistake. A good (digital) scale is truly essential. Recently Ruhlman's new book, Ratio, makde that very clear.


The 4 Basic Gadgets No New Kitchen Should Be Without
3/10/11 07:49 PM

Graved Lachs. Gravlax. Whatever. They're delicious, and easy to make. Most important, you can add all kinds of cool stuff, like beets, dill, horseradish, anything. By far my favorite cured fish. No "Lox".


How To Salt Cure Lox At Home For Less
3/8/11 08:28 PM

The first time I tried Durian was at a Thai restaurant, in 1000 Oaks, back in the late eighties. It was actually a sorbet. I remember the waiter standing by, smiling, waiting for my redaction. Though it smelled a bit like gasoline, I found the taste intriguing. I have since tried the fruit a couple of times. It's certainly unusual, and pungent, but not nearly as bad as it's reputation. I think you should use your bottle of essence in sorbet, not ice cream.


Durian Essence: The Smallest, Stinkiest Bottle Ever
3/7/11 06:35 PM

Like many, I collect cookbooks. My go to classics are similar; Joy of Cooking, Theory and Practice of Good Cooking. Lately, new books from Thomas Keller, and David Chang. But mostly these days, i use the iPad, a couple of apps, and Dropbox. I keep all my Instapapered recipes in directories on Dropbox. They're accessible anywhere.


What Would Be the Ideal Cookbook for Your Kitchen?
2/12/11 06:15 AM

Sometime in the late seventies, i was working in Shaker Heights, Ohio. I had lunch at a little hole in the wall. The sandwich:

Excellent Lilverwurst, sweet vidalia onion, hard- boiled egg, horseradish, and a little mayo, on very good rye.

Though I love the good old ham and cheese, that sandwich from way back is still the best I've ever eaten.


Food Memories: What's Your Favorite Sandwich, Ever?
2/12/11 05:52 AM