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Messages - phillamb168

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All Things Food / Re: Pizza Fatta en Casa
« on: November 12, 2010, 12:42:57 PM »
Don't forget the best of them all: ketchup with some mayonnaise mixed in, optionally with sriracha. Om nom nom.

The Pub / Re: Salute
« on: November 12, 2010, 04:06:33 AM »
This is a long post, but I'd like to think that it's worth reading if you have time.


I learned this recently, and it's really something to think about when you hear people who knock France as being wimpy "cheese-eating surrender monkeys:"

In World War I, France lost 1,397,800 soldiers during the 1914-18 conflict. They also had 300,000 civilian casualties. Total dead: almost four and a half percent of the population. 4,266,000 military wounded, ten percent of the population. And we all know that "wounded" from WWI often meant surviving injuries whose treatments would severely handicap the soldier.

In every town in France, -every- town, there's a memorial to their men "mort pour la France." In Milly-la-foret, a beautiful town near me known for its mint production, there's a memorial in the local church, with more than 200 names listed. The town had a population of 2,416 just before the war. That's 12 percent of the town, dead. In my town, population 423 during the war, there's a memorial to 30 men. This country suffered losses that could not be imagined by those of us lucky enough to have been born on a completely different side of the world in a very comfortable place from a strategic point of view, losses that affected every single Frenchman. So next time you hear someone talking about how the French are always giving up, remind them of those 1.4 million, whose gave up nothing else but their lives.

Then there's World War II. Vichy overshadows a lot of the bravery that Frenchmen exhibited during the occupation, and before. The street I live on is named after a fighter pilot and Légion d'honneur recipient who died in 1940, Commandant Maurice Arnoux. He first fought in WWI, first in Serbia where, at 19 years old, he was inducted into the Order of the Serbian Army, received the Serbian Cross for "Vertus militaires," and the French Croix de Guerre with Palm. In 1916, he was sent to Verdun and as Sergeant flew at altitudes that sometimes went as low as 20 feet to provide cover for ground forces. On two occasions his plane was hit and the resulting damage forced full-speed emergency landings, from which he emerged miraculously unscathed. His actions at Verdun and elsewhere earned him five citations in the order of the French Army Air Corps, the Médaille Militaire,  and the Légion d'honneur, earned at only 23 years old.

During the space between wars he was promoted several times and finally reached the rank of Commandant. During WWII he took again to aerial engagements, and was wounded on May 10, 1940. After a brief stay in the hospital he returned to the air and on June 6, 1940, after a heroic battle, he was shot down and crashed in a cornfield outside of Angivillers. He left behind a wife, three children, and many friends.


In several places near my house you can find plaques commemorating Free French who were killed at the hands of the Nazis. Here's one of them:,2.2625&spn=0.001281,0.004128&z=19&layer=c&cbll=48.51834,2.262387&panoid=RAkgXejiUdIo5VaI4fsfFQ&cbp=12,20.21,,0,8.22
(I'm going over there to get a few baguettes after work, I'll post a better picture then, as well as a translation).


And, as an American in France, I'm keenly aware of the role my grandfather and other grandfathers like mine had to play here.

This is the Paratrooper Memorial at a bridge near Saint Mere Eglise. I drank a Sam Adams near here, in their memory.

This is a blockhouse at Omaha Beach.

This is Point du Hoc, which Rangers scaled on D-Day.

This is the church in Ste Mere Eglise - if you remember The Longest Day, Red Buttons got caught on the roof of the church during the invasion. That actually happened, and the guy survived. They put this up in honor of him.

The interior of the church, one of the stained glass windows. This depicts Mary, but I'd like to think that it represents Marianne, the symbol of France, with paratroopers coming to her aid. Makes me a bit teary thinking about it.

This is another stained glass from the interior, depicting saint michael. At the bottom it says "Ils sont revenus" which means, "They have come back." The reason behind it: on the left, the date 6 June 1944, and on the right, 6 June 1969, 25 years later. It was the first time the paratroopers that liberated the town had come back, and was a powerful moment for the people of the town. FYI Ste Mere Eglise was the first town in France to be liberated on D-Day.

Here's a marker for an unknown soldier's grave, in the American Cemetery near the Normandy beaches.

All Things Food / Re: Al Pastor
« on: November 10, 2010, 12:31:59 PM »
For that purpose, in Germany the amount of ground meat is not allowed to surpass 60% (Deutsches Lebensmittelbuch).

It's the Reinheitsgebot of kebab!!!

General Homebrew Discussion / Basic Brewing DVDs
« on: November 10, 2010, 07:37:25 AM »
Has anyone seen the Basic Brewing DVDs? I'm thinking of getting the intro to extract and intro to all-grain for my wife, because it might be fun to watch them together and learn something. Thoughts?

All Things Food / Re: Al Pastor
« on: November 10, 2010, 07:24:20 AM »
Alton's method would be completely authentic for European döner kebab, if that's what he was trying to make.

Exactly - the Lebanese supposedly brought the idea of al pastor to Mexico, and I was thinking that the "original" would have probably been something along the lines of doner or shawarma.

All Things Food / Re: Al Pastor
« on: November 10, 2010, 12:42:43 AM »

This is Alton Brown's recipe for Gyros. If you scroll down you'll see his instructions for doing it rotisserie-style. I know al pastor is typically chunks of meat as opposed to a paste, but I wonder if this wouldn't be closer to the "original" al pastor that came to Mexico from the Middle East? Plus it's all done in a food processor, and I loves me some food processorin'.

All Things Food / Re: Al Pastor
« on: November 09, 2010, 02:17:16 PM »
Ever since leaving Chicago I've been trying to find an Al Pastor recipe to rival what I ate there. I'm hoping Kenji on Serious Eats will get to doing one sometime soon, but we'll see. If you've got a recipe, post it, I'd be happy to try.

All Things Food / Re: Kitchen Knives
« on: November 09, 2010, 12:19:02 PM »
ATK liked a relatively cheap chef's knife, around $30.  A Victorinox I think.  Bouef.

ATK? Is that like SWMBO?

I'd also recommend something slightly more underhanded, which is, once you go to the store and find the knife that's right for you, order the actual set on Amazon. Typically wayyyy cheaper. The AHA used to have an affiliate code but I dunno where to find it, if you use it your purchase will send like 1% of the purchase price to AHA.

All Things Food / Re: Pizza Fatta en Casa
« on: November 09, 2010, 12:10:18 PM »
I also had the best lasagna in Copenhagen. It looked and was served exactly like the lasagna in Northern Italy- which was pretty darn good. Better than American casserole style.

Now there's a beer town. I was there for a Drupal conference and spent pretty much all of my downtime at "Brewpub." Oh, and Mikkeller did a custom beer called "Awesomesauce" for our conference. Basically an IPA with Lychee. Lychee, btw, is fantastic in those super hoppy beers. Fan. Tas. Tic. Copenhagen also has great hot dogs. Rød Pølse. *Beavis & Butthead Laugh* You said Rød Pølse.

All Things Food / Re: Thanksgiving recipe time
« on: November 09, 2010, 12:03:23 PM »
What about

Frying a turkey?

I found a supplier in the UK that can get me one of those Bayou Classics, and I'm super tempted. We've got 18 people coming so I think I'd probably do 2 10-pounders, one in the BGE @ 350 with hickory per the recommendations above and then the other in the fryer. Sounds like the investment would be worthwhile, too, as those things can be handy for brewing-related activities, apparently. Thoughts? I've never done it before but have been doing my research and it seems feasible.

All Things Food / Re: BBQ Style
« on: November 09, 2010, 06:41:00 AM »
I barbecue a lot for my inlaws in France but their grills are pretty basic.  The big ones are water heaters cut in half.  You can put a lot of chicken on one but temp control is pretty much out of the question.  One BIL has a Weber type grill that he paid around $250 for but it's pretty small and not very well designed.

Yup. Most of my friends (save one) have "bbq grills" which are basically electric or gas skillets. The one guy I know has a Weber Genesis, although he spent some time in Germany so I think it rubbed off on him.

When we moved here, we decided to ship two things: our king-size bed, and our Large Big Green Egg. We told the movers, "load the egg and the bed first, and then fit in whatever else you can." Left behind a couch, TV console, and a nice chair because my priority was the Egg. SO glad I did it, because as you said, whatever you can find out here is usually crap.

One nice thing about BBQ out here, though. I can't remember what they're called, but I've got a bag of dried grapevine that I throw on to the grill when I'm doing steaks and such. They're super super cheap and give a nice dose of smoke without forcing me to resort to my stash of contraband mesquite and hickory.

All Things Food / Re: Thanksgiving recipe time
« on: November 09, 2010, 06:29:54 AM »
Last year I spatchcocked a turkey and smoked it, quite nice.

How'd you go about smoking it - Hickory, Apple? Figure it'd take a loooong time to smoke a big bird, how long you end up going for?

All Things Food / Thanksgiving recipe time
« on: November 09, 2010, 02:45:06 AM »
Got anything in mind? I'll be doing my 9-kg (19.5 pound) bird in this manner:

For sides, my wife is doing a rabbit stuffing. I'm doing some bourbon pecan sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, pommes puree, and homemade cranberry sauce. Probably doing some sort of homemade artisanal rolls on the side, not sure what kind though.

And of course, BEER. Probably a selection of Belgians for people to taste, along with Anchor Steam IPA and maybe something British.

All Things Food / Re: Pizza Fatta en Casa
« on: November 09, 2010, 02:40:40 AM »
My daughter baked at Whole Foods and then at an upscale restaurant in Albuquerque for a while.  She makes an incredible pizza dough and I make a pretty good sauce with herbs from the garden   Our 2 favorite pizzas are spicy shrimp with red bell peppers and onion, and garlic chicken with green chiles.
I once ordered a pizza in my wife's town in France.   It had some weird combo of ingredients like artichokes and asparagus with ham and eggs.  When the waiter brought it to me there wasn't any visible egg, but then he cracked a freakin raw egg right in the middle of the pie.  It sizzled until it was at least sunny side up but it pretty much ruined an already unappetizing pizza.

That sounds about right. There's a pizza truck we go to sometimes that parks down the road from us; he has a lot of great combinations, but that egg one is a bit eh for me. My wife loves loves loves it. You gotta remember in France eggs are -not- a breakfast food, so it "makes sense" to put it on a pizza.

Me, I'll take anchovies and pepperoni, thankyouverymuch.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Strange Pour
« on: November 09, 2010, 02:37:31 AM »
You might try swapping the kegs to see if it has anything to do with the beer or the keg you are using. 

After posting to the forum, this is the first thing I'll try tonight. I figured maybe it was an over-carb problem or something.

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