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Kinda busy last few days. Sorry for lack of quality posts.


Totally in love with Jersey Shore. Why can't you guys start calling me DWOWW?

I tried making homemade tortillas this weekend and it was a bust. Too cake-y. Maybe I didn't put enough water in? I used flour, not corn, followed a well-reviewed recipe, let the dough rest and everything. I need to know the secret! Someone help, please.

I made homemade mac & cheese, THIS recipe. WOW. I also baked it at the end to crisp up the breadcrumbs. Bad idea. Just out of the pan is best. Next time I am going to put bacon in it. And a little garlic.

Talk to me. What's happening, my people?


Anonymous said...

Pauly D and The Sitch need to get into a fight and end up making out. Come on, MTV!

Anonymous said...

I love your blog and have missed your daily posts....I, too, love J.Shore......oh to be young, buff, and obnoxious. Anyway, thanks for making my day brighter.

Chloeeeee said...

Jersey Shore is my crack. And I never follow anything MTV endorses or produces. But Jersey Shore is amazing. I even posted this amazing video I found of a little kid version of Jersey Shore on my blog!

If you're a Guidette like me, you'll give this video fist pumps.

thezhush said... JS too. And Mac n cheese, sort of, almost, same thing.
the zhush

boops said...

meanwhile in massachusetts....the kennedy's must be rolling in their graves (sigh)

Julie K said...

Along with the bacon, add some smoked paprika. You'll love it.

Anonymous said...

What's happening? We miss your bitchy comments- duh. My workday isn't nearly as unproductive as it should be.

Halcyon House said..., love, love homemade tortillas.

I'm not sure if there is a secret. Post a link to the recipe and I'll tell you if it's different than mine.

As an aside, my hubby bought me a tortilla press for Christmas, guess he likes them too!

David said...

We're getting a new furnace Friday morning. Woo. I'm looking forward to the bathroom being warmer than 60 when I shower for work.

Marija said...

I'm relating to your busy status. Long weekends tend to ruin the following week for me. No time to discuss the golden globes or read my new magz but totally made time for Jersey Shore!

I catch myself re-watching episodes right after they've aired. But more disturbing? I'm finding it hard to say the word "situation" anymore in any context...

sarah said...

Jersey Shore is so damn ridiculous. And that's why it is so damn amazing.

style-for-style said...

did you use a tortilla press?

Anonymous said...

What's up in real life or on reality TV? I love the latter, but real life has me in its grips tonight. I live in Mass, where a Republican was just elected to the seat held by Ted Kennedy. If the rest of the US isn't gripped by this yet, they will be tomorrow. Health care reform is likely dead. I feel the air being sucked out of the room.

Decorno said...

style-for-style - - yes, I did. I still did a lousy job. What gives?

David - what are you doing without heat?? I am glad a new furnace is on the way.

And for the other comments about what's happening in Mass... I really hope healthcare reform isn't dead. I can't even think about it right now. We were finally making progress. Fuck.

Sharon said...

1. I bought a tortilla press.
2. Made tortillas one time - about a year ago.
3. Tortillas were very marginal.
4. Tortilla press is collecting dust.
5. Need help too.

Anonymous said...

From Massachusetts, I can't even look at the papers today, heartsick.

Please discuss: Bad Art. Surely even Homegoods sells better art than what's over this mantle. Even a Keep Calm and Carry On poster would be an improvement over what looks to be a Thomas Kinkade. This from one of the Skirted Roundtable:

Lady Blue said...

Longtime lurker here :)
YESSS! Jersey Shore is that crack.
It's an amazingly vapid show. Underneath the knockers, orange-glo and the chicken grease, I can see JWOWW has a beautiful heart though!

What's going on?
In a few weeks I'll be living alone [I CANNOT DO ROOMMATES ANYMORE] in NYC, which has been a dream since forever. More importantly though, I can decorate the bitch how I want - and even put all my stuff in the bathroom without an annoying roommate harping about my materialism and taking over the sink. *Sigh* I'm so excited.

Lolo said...

Did you let your flour "rest" for a bit before you rolled them out? Did you use shortening or actual fat, aka lard,bacon, etc.?

Anonymous said...

add roasted cherry tomatoes to mac and cheese:
heat oven to 400, on sheet pan, toss one pint cherry tomatoes with one tablespoon olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon sugar, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, pepper, and zest of one lemon. roast 15 minutes, shake pan, roast additional ten minutes.
scatter across top of mac and cheese and then top with bread crumb/cheese topping

Anonymous said...

I am a huge Cooks Illustrated fan--in the last week I just made their crispy oatmeal cookies and not-too cake-like and fudge-like brownies from 2008. Both were fanastic.

That said, I say ditch your recipe and use this one.
I've made it several times; last week my husband my husband ate 1/2 of the pan (I had halved the recipe) before we ate dinner.

Brilliant Asylum said...

I blame Jersey Shore for all of my uncharacteristic fist-pumping as of late. It seriously puts the Real World to shame in terms of entertainment value.

Shelley said...

I think on David's blog he refers to this mac n' cheese recipe:

Cavatappi Casserole With Prosciutto and

Three Cheeses Recipe #190121

For a milder flavor, substitute white Cheddar for the Gruyère and Monterey Jack for Gouda. Cottage Living 9/2006. Have tweaked it with 2% milk and it turned out fine, it was all we had.Update: 06/26/2009 - leave out the salt because the cheeses and prosciutto have enough salt. The hot sauce makes the dish, even when you don't like it - it makes it special.")

42 min | 10 min prep


1 lb cavatappi pasta or spiral shaped pasta (Barilla) or spiral shaped pasta (short)
6 ounces prosciutto, cut into thin strips
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 cups 2% low-fat milk or whole milk
1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
1/4-1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 pinch red pepper flakes (optional) or Tabasco sauce
2 cups gruyere cheese, grated and divided
1 1/2 cups gouda cheese, shredded
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
Preheat oven to 350ºF.
Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
Lightly grease a 13x9" baking dish, and set aside. (Can also use 8 ramekins).
Cook prosciutto in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, stirring often, 6 minutes or until browned and crisp; set aside.
Melt butter in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat.
Add flour, and cook, whisking constantly, 1 minute. Slowly whisk in milk, and cook, whisking constantly, 5 minutes or until smooth mixture comes to a boil and thickens.
Whisk in salt, black pepper, and, if desired, red pepper or hot sauce.
Remove from heat and add 1 cup Guyère, whisking until smooth.
Add Gouda and Parmesan, and whisk until smooth.
Add prosciutto and pasta, and stir to combine.
Transfer mixture to prepared dish(or ramekins) top with remaining 1 cup Gruyère.
Bake at 350ºF for 20 minutes or until bubbly.

Bailey @ peppermintbliss said...

When I first started watching Jersey Shore I was like ugh, why does this have to be the new big thing, this is miserable, but I am a total cheesedick and didn't want to be left out on the conversation. As the episodes have worn on I have come to LOVE them, they are oddly endearing, aren't they? Maybe I just feel close to them cause I have seen Snookie's blurred out vag so many times. Makes you feel like you really know a girl.

Kara said...

I am not giving up on health care reform (sure, call me Pollyanna). Saddened, deeply that a seat held by Ted Kennedy is now held by a rep. Even sadder to see the concession speech by Coakley- could she care less about losing the election? There was no passion whatsoever and no emotion no wonder the people didn't vote for her.

Regarding mac+cheese. I had the most divine mac+cheese+lobster this weekend. It will now be on the menu when I have guests over it was that good. Almost made me cry, it was so good. SO.FREAKING.YUMMY.

Anonymous said...

"Progress", Decorno? You must not have children. Your dear little head is up in the clouds like a dreamy college student.

And hey Boops, Mary Jo Kopechne may finally have stopped rolling in HER grave....

LB said...

I made tortillas for the first time this weekend too!

Here's the recipe I followed:

With these extra tips from a friend who makes them a lot:
mix the flour, salt, and baking powder together first. Then work the
shortening into the flour mixture kind of like you are making
biscuits (but you can be a little rougher). Don't overwork the
shortening. You can kind of just rub it into the flour. The bits of
shortening give you a layering effect in the tortilla.

It is very important to let the dough balls rest before you
press/roll them out. This lets the flour hydrate and makes the
dough easier to work with.

I used my cast iron pan, medium heat, no oil to cook them. They will
puff a little when cooking. When there are a couple of brown spots,
And after making them, I decided that I should use two cutting boards to press the balls. I had used two plates, but they had a lip which prevent the extra pressing. And they are nice and tasty (I thought better, actually) after sitting for a few hours in the fridge.

LB said...

Oh, and I used vegetable fat since I don't do lard.

Anonymous said...

Well, Kara, are you going to give us the recipe?

globeguy said...

Hi there. I've found the simplest recipe for tortillas is the best.

As for water, it should be just a little sticky, but not enough to stick to the counter while kneading.

A few other tricks: 1) you need to use your hands to work the butter into the flour and other ingredients. It should end up looking mealy, with no chunks of butter hanging out in there. 2) I add a little more baking powder than the recipe calls for. Seems to bubble up a little better. 3) Add a little water at a time until you get that slightly sticky, but not enough to stick to your hands. If you add too much just throw in a little more flour.

About 4-cups of flour
About a stick of butter
A little more than 2 TBSPs of baking power
About a TBSP of salt
Half a drinking glass of hot water

Even after a friend showed me, it took a few tries to get right.

Anonymous said...

OMG. Emeril has a bombastic mac and cheese recipe. Srsly. FoodNetwork it.

Suzanne in Mtl said...

Are homemade tortillas really worth the effort? The type I buy has natural ingredients and doesn't cost a fortune. Cookies are worth making from scratch, but tortillas?

Anonymous 6:07, you know how to sell a recipe! Off to Martha I go.

jaclyde said...

My go-to impressing people mac and cheese is Ina's:

Seriously ridiculously good. Better than good. Almost good enough to completely make you forget about Brown, and healthcare reform, and global warming, etc...

John Strauss said...

My wife comes from a Mexican heritage: here's what she said. #1 the flour has to be specifically for tortillas, such as La Pina. #2 she warms the water she is going to use in the microwave a bit and dissolves the salt to be used into the warm water before adding to the mix.

Shelley said...

Here in San Diego we can buy fabulous tortillas in several places. Our local CostCo [ warehouse store] sells fresh raw--un baked-- tortillas - and you just cook them on a hot griddle. dee-lish-!

Sharon said...

Anon at 3:42
I want to discuss that "art" SO BAD plus the recent kitchen makeover from the same lady ...

Cynthia said...

Homemade tortillas are SO worth it. They're just not like anything you get from a store. I like Rick Bayless' recipe. Lots of great tips.

Feisty said...

Globeguy is right about how the tortilla should feel with the right amount of water.

Tortilla presses are for corn tortillas, not flour. If you're making flour tortillas, use a freaking beer bottle to roll the things out. Seriously. Roll them out like pie dough, only thinner.

Here's the super secret tortilla recipe that works EVERY TIME.

5 somethings of flour to 1 something of fat (lard, manteca, or crisco), plus warm water to the right consistency. Something can = tablespoon, cups, whatever. Adjust size of something for how many you are making. Throw in a little bit of salt if you want.

So take the flour, I knead the manteca in with my hands because it's easier, until it's got a crumbly consistency. Add water. Knead some more, shape into golf balls, let rest 30 min, roll out with beer bottle, throw on hot dry griddle. When the tortilla bubbles, flip it over, when it bubbles big flip again. Ta-daaaaaah.

I love Snookie, and oddly enough, Vinny. And JWow. Watching the show gives me insight on an ex of mine, sadly enough. I now understand his shoe/fashion choices, and well, it explains everything.

Ali said...

Doing well, thanks for asking.

That art is beyond fug. It looks like something a real estate agent would buy in bulk to stage a building of overpriced condos.

Other topics I would like to discuss - Decorno, I loved your packing strategy for your summer trip to Italy. What would you pack for a winter business trip? I'm going to London for 2 weeks next month and don't want to pack the house.

Also want to understand Craigslist selling protocal. I think of CL as a garage sale/swap meet, but it seems like there is a lot on there that is really overpriced. I just saw a C&B sofa that was "gently used" for 2 years that someone was selling for $200 less than retail. Seriously? Do they think they rented it for 2 years for $200? And what exactly does gently used mean?

Henrietta said...

Decorno, I am furious with the Democrats. Even before the polls closed the Dems started caving on HCR. Are you kidding me? The whole Dem leadership falls apart because Mass elects a pin-up boy to the Senate and the Dem supermajority is down by ONE?! It is a total disgrace and failure of democracy.

AmandaG said...

Keep the water as hot as your hands will take.

Stacy said...

I made some rockin' tortillas from this recipe at Orangette. I substitute half bread flour. The higher gluten makes the tortillas stretchier and less prone to tearing. Roll the tortillas paper thin using lots of flour to prevent sticking. No cakeyness!

Wheelchair said...

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KM 2500 Wheelchair

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Wheelchair said...

Hey, very nice site. I came across this on Google, and I am stoked that I did. I will definitely be coming back here more often. Wish I could add to the conversation and bring a bit more to the table, but am just taking in as much info as I can at the moment. Thanks for sharing.
Portable Wheelchair

Keep Posting:)

Wheelchair said...

Hey, very nice site. I came across this on Google, and I am stoked that I did. I will definitely be coming back here more often. Wish I could add to the conversation and bring a bit more to the table, but am just taking in as much info as I can at the moment. Thanks for sharing.
Travel Wheelchairs

Keep Posting:)

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