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Topics - MDixon

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All Things Food / Pressure Cooker
« on: June 28, 2016, 12:01:03 PM »
I think the last time we had a pressure cooker thread was 2010 so it seemed like a good time to start a new one. We had a Presto PC and I believe the gasket died so we ditched it around 2011. My wife decided she wanted a new one earlier this year and after some research I landed on the Fagor Duo which is an 8 quart and was recommended by America's Test Kitchen.

According to ATK the price should have been $80-90, but all we could find was $110 which seems kinda pricey for a pot. After some searching around we found it on Kohl's website and with some bucks my wife had and a percentage off got it home for around $70. My first cook was beef ribs and wouldn't you know it the lid had a defect. I sent a note to Fagor CS and they shipped out new parts and after install we've not had another issue.

Last night I cooked some pork ribs and my wife loved them. I still prefer a smoker for ribs, but 30 minutes vs hours on the grill is a big difference especially with so little prep to get rolling. We're pulling it out about once a week and have even tried it with frozen meat with great results. The one recipe that didn't quite work was a chicken recipe and apparently even when frozen they meant for the pieces to be separated.

If I were looking for a space saver I would get one of these and use it as a pressure cooker and a stock pot for dual duty.

All Things Food / Sauerkraut Fun
« on: June 14, 2016, 06:58:00 PM »
So I've made kraut in the past and know how to do it and as it turns out I like kraut, a little on a reuben, but a bucket of kraut is enough to last me forever. My wife tried to make some in the kitchen a few years ago and as soon as it started to ferment she threw it out due to the smell of fermentation. While I was gone to Baltimore she decided it was time to make kraut again so she got some lids and airlocks for jars and made two small batches. When I got home she was very proud of herself until I divulged the airlock does not filter out the aromas, it simply keeps things from getting in. I wish I had a video of her reaction.

Anyway, I set her up a dorm fridge on a temp controller in the garage to ferment her kraut, but thought I would share the story.

Events / BJCP Reception in Baltimore
« on: June 02, 2016, 11:13:26 AM »
Seats are still available for the BJCP Reception on Wednesday in Baltimore. You can register here:

The BJCP Reception at the Baltimore AHA conference is June 8 from noon to 3:30pm and that same day from 4 to 6pm is Exam Proctor Training. Registration for both is open now on the BJCP website, enter from the home page and be sure to select the correct event you with to attend. Proctor Training is free and only available for BJCP members, while the BJCP Reception is open to members and guest.

The page opened for me on Proctor Training, so if you were only interested in the Reception be sure to change the selection at the top of the registration page.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Ommegang Seven Kingdoms
« on: April 25, 2016, 04:12:54 PM »
Really enjoyed this beer. They mentioned phenols on the website, but they did not stand out to me. Seemed like a perfect example of a White IPA from the bottle I consumed.

I hope Moonlight Brewing loses and I hope it costs them lots of money in the process.

Ingredients / Cleopatra Hops
« on: April 05, 2016, 01:34:53 PM »
I was at one of my local breweries last night and they had a single hop pale ale on using Cleopatra hops. I tried to find out some information on the hops and really haven't come up with much so I thought I would ask here. The brewer didn't have any real information either, it was a hop his supplier had so he thought he would give it a try. The aroma was fantastic for the pale ale, but the bittering was a bit understated. I could see this hop for aroma in pale ales and IPAs, but didn't know if someone had more experience with them or more information to offer.

The Pub / Laptop/Desktop
« on: March 29, 2016, 01:19:08 PM »
My desktop bit the dust for the second time and it was running XP so I figure it is time to destroy the hard drive and let it go. I cannot get it to boot even in safe mode so unless someone has a nifty means to access the hard drive I'll most likely just take it apart and hit it with a hammer.

I need to replace my current old laptop which is also XP. My wife has a laptop so I could potentially go into another desktop or I could get a laptop as the home computer. Most of you guys are far more advanced in computers than I will ever be again, but looking for solid inexpensive options for replacement. I have an iPad so touchscreen on a laptop is certainly not a necessity. I believe I have a means for free Office so no worries there. The computer would mainly be utilized for going online and some light use of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. It needs to be able to play a video without issue. I assume now with most laptops a DVD player is a plug in instead of standard. I do not play games on the computer so those capabilities are not required.

Open to all suggestions.

Commercial Beer Reviews / 2006 Three Floyds Dark Lord
« on: March 03, 2016, 02:29:17 PM »
It was awesome, that is all.

The Pub / Draft Magazine Beer Vacation Cruise Contest
« on: January 29, 2016, 07:02:21 PM »
You cannot win if you don't enter!

Events / 2016 BJCP Board Elections: North, Northeast, Mountains/Northwest
« on: January 29, 2016, 02:13:06 PM »
This year three of the seven BJCP Board of Directors positions are up for election. For 2016 those regions are:

North Region
Alaska, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin
Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Saskatchewan, Yukon

Northeast Region
Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont
New Brunswick, Newfoundland & Labrador, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec
All countries outside the United States and Canada are also included in this region.

Mountain/Northwest Region
Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming

Potential candidates will need to be nominated (by themselves or others) and have 5 endorsements.

Nominations are now being accepted through February 29. The details can be found here:

The Pub / Need Your Vote - 2016 Beer Drinker of the Year
« on: January 25, 2016, 09:21:30 PM »
I could use your vote for Beer Drinker of the Year. My brief beer resume is on the website, but I was a finalist in 2011 and a semi-finalist in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2012 which was the last year they held the competition. Please vote for me if you feel so inclined so I can compete in Denver in April!

Thanks and Cheers!

All Things Food / Silicone Baking Mat
« on: December 19, 2015, 04:29:12 PM »
A very long time ago I purchased two Silpats and we used them to death. They had soaked up enough grease due to cooking various things I finally could not get them to a point they did not feel greasy. I probably spent $20-25 each for them.

I purchased a two pack of Amazon Baking Mats recently for less than $12 total (I have Amazon Prime) and have used them a few times since they arrived and I trashed the Silpats. They are as good as Silpat if not better. Highly recommended.

The Pub / Shipping Unshippables
« on: December 12, 2015, 08:22:01 PM »
Which is better currently for shipping things which might not exactly meet policy, FedEx or UPS? Things like yeast samples which may have been legally distilled?

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