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Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 5:17 pm UTC
by Nath
  • I think some cuts of steak are best cooked to medium or (gasp) beyond.
  • I don't think constantly stirring a risotto does anything important.
  • Hot dogs are just not that great. Even correctly executed Chicago or NY-style hot dogs.
  • Chai should not contain vanilla.
  • Some kinds of cheese are just fine with some kinds of seafood.
  • Good brands of instant coffee are better than badly-prepared drip coffee.
  • Chicago-style gyros is a poor substitute for gyros.
  • Eggs do not instantly become gross when they get browned.

Do you have any strong controversial opinions on food? They belong here.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 5:23 pm UTC
by Izawwlgood
Nath wrote:Chicago-style gyros is a poor substitute for gyros.
I didn't realize this was a thing? The way I always got gyros at the neighborhood Greek joint in my parents neighborhood was thing (maybe one inch wide) shavings from a skewer of pressed, seasoned, lamb chuck that's rotating on a spit. The salami like disks of meat that I've also had in other places always seemed wrong. What is the right way of doing gyros?

I think mixing fruit drinks is a never ending process. You cannot add enough flavors to the beverage. Strawberry mango peach? Add that to orange banana pineapple. Add that to cranberry. Add some chocolate. Whatever. I love it.

This generally applies to most foods. Sag Paneer and chicken tikka masala piled on garlic naan and washed down with mango lasse. I'm not a super taster, but I am a super appreciator, so, just keep adding layers. I love Thai and Cambodian food for this reason.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 5:42 pm UTC
by Angua
There is nothing special about tropical fruit.
Cold pizza is amazing, especially as breakfast.
Soy sauce on mac and cheese is amazing
Soy sauce on popcorn is also amazing.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 5:44 pm UTC
by AngrySquirrel
  • Spices should always be cooked in, never added afterwards. If you add the spices afterwards the distribution in the dish is wrong and not good enough.
  • Measurements are there to be ignored. They are guidelines, not rules and the best result always comes when you play it by ear.
  • Hot dogs are fucking horrible unless homemade from the ground of animals you killed with your own two hands or teeth.
  • You can't get good fish from the store.
  • The best fish is fish that has newly been pulled up, cooked on stick on a fire in the middle of nowhere while you're being eaten by mosquitos. If you are posh you brought a bag containing flour, salt and pepper that you rolled the fish in first before you cooked it.
  • Salt is evil.
  • Piri piri is good.
  • There's no such thing as "good" takeaway-pizza. They are, at best, merely acceptable. Good pizza is always homemade. Always.
  • "Diet" dairy products are an atrocity against mankind and pointless. It doesn't matter if you're trying to lose weight or trying to cut down on fat, diet dairy-products is not the way to do it.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 6:10 pm UTC
by Nath
Izawwlgood wrote:I didn't realize this was a thing? The way I always got gyros at the neighborhood Greek joint in my parents neighborhood was thing (maybe one inch wide) shavings from a skewer of pressed, seasoned, lamb chuck that's rotating on a spit. The salami like disks of meat that I've also had in other places always seemed wrong. What is the right way of doing gyros?

The pressed, seasoned lamb is the stuff I was referring to as Chicago-style gyros, because most of the meat-cones I've seen in the US are from Chicago-based distributors like Kronos. I don't hate it, but it's not the same dish as Greek-style gyros, which is also made with a meat cone on a vertical spit, but the meat is usually pork, and the cone consists of a stack of slices rather than a giant sausage. The accompaniments are also different.

Many Greek restaurateurs in the US sell the Chicago version, just because the real thing is more expensive and less familiar to the customers. Same deal with shawarma in Arabic restaurants, though I have found one place in Seattle that makes it the old-fashioned way.

Izawwlgood wrote:This generally applies to most foods. Sag Paneer and chicken tikka masala piled on garlic naan and washed down with mango lasse. I'm not a super taster, but I am a super appreciator, so, just keep adding layers. I love Thai and Cambodian food for this reason.

This is how we eat in India -- several side dishes around a pile of rice or rotis, and you take a bit of this and a dab of that, making every mouthful a different mixture of flavors and textures.

AngrySquirrel wrote:There's no such thing as "good" takeaway-pizza. They are, at best, merely acceptable. Good pizza is always homemade. Always.

Hurray, controversy! I believe you can't make a really good pizza on a home oven, because it's simply not hot enough.

Also, salt is awesome.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 6:22 pm UTC
by AngrySquirrel
Nath wrote:
AngrySquirrel wrote:There's no such thing as "good" takeaway-pizza. They are, at best, merely acceptable. Good pizza is always homemade. Always.

Hurray, controversy! I believe you can't make a really good pizza on a home oven, because it's simply not hot enough.

Yes, but that goes for 98% (not an actual fact) of take-away pizza places as well. But at least with homemade pizza you have the opportunity to spice it differently according to what works best with what toppings, and chose cheese-mixtures that work together with the meat you're using etc. Most take-away pizza only wary when it comes to meat used and whether or not there is pineapple/mushrooms etc.
Nath wrote:Also, salt is awesome.

Salt is overused to the point of tediousness. We think salt is the natural state of things because we're so used to everything being oversalted that we believe that is how it's supposed to be.

Edit: That said, has anyone here tried salted and fried/grilled watermelon? I'm tempted to try it, but I've yet to hear anyone say anything positive about it.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 6:36 pm UTC
by Zohar
Nath wrote:
  • I don't think constantly stirring a risotto does anything important.

BLASPHEMY! It releases starch better and makes it creamier!

AngrySquirrel wrote:
  • Measurements are there to be ignored. They are guidelines, not rules and the best result always comes when you play it by ear.
  • Salt is evil.
  • There's no such thing as "good" takeaway-pizza. They are, at best, merely acceptable. Good pizza is always homemade. Always.

I agree that measurements are mere recommendations when cooking, but when baking they're essential, unless you really know what you're doing in the kitchen.
Salt is critical in cooking! Not too much, but you need it to accentuate flavors.
Some takeaway pizza can be good. And Nath - a pizza stone can really help to get heat going.

AngrySquirrel wrote:That said, has anyone here tried salted and fried/grilled watermelon? I'm tempted to try it, but I've yet to hear anyone say anything positive about it.

No, but watermelon and salty cheese (feta, sirene etc.) is very popular in Israel. And yummy.

  • When we were kids my brothers and I used to eat pasta with ketchup and cottage cheese. We still do that sometimes nowadays and it's awesome.
  • I don't like eggplants. They always give me a burning sensation in my mouth. I think I might be allergic.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 6:53 pm UTC
by AngrySquirrel
Zohar wrote:Salt is critical in cooking! Not too much, but you need it to accentuate flavors.

See! This is why salt is evil! Food has tastes without salt, but because we're so used to everything always being salted that we now believe that is the natural state of things. Salt should accentuate, but it should not be default to make things taste.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 7:11 pm UTC
by Angua
Salt on pizza. Yum. Definitely a double controversial one there, what with the salt controversy going on right now.

I sweat so much that I probably need a lot of salt anyway.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 7:20 pm UTC
by Nath
AngrySquirrel wrote:Yes, but that goes for 98% (not an actual fact) of take-away pizza places as well. But at least with homemade pizza you have the opportunity to spice it differently according to what works best with what toppings, and chose cheese-mixtures that work together with the meat you're using etc. Most take-away pizza only wary when it comes to meat used and whether or not there is pineapple/mushrooms etc.

I know what you mean -- the 'default' takeaway/chain pizza, with bagel-like crust, sauce straight from a can, and shredded cheese from a bag. You can beat that at home. I have a passable pizza place nearby that actually puts a bit of effort into it, though, so my default takeaway pizza has a good crust (crispy, a bit chewy, a little char, a few bubbles) and decent toppings. This has kind of reduced my incentive to make from-scratch pizza at home.

AngrySquirrel wrote:That said, has anyone here tried salted and fried/grilled watermelon? I'm tempted to try it, but I've yet to hear anyone say anything positive about it.

Let us know how it goes. I don't know if watermelon has the structural integrity to survive frying.

Zohar wrote:
Nath wrote:
  • I don't think constantly stirring a risotto does anything important.

BLASPHEMY! It releases starch better and makes it creamier!

That's the conventional wisdom, but I'm not convinced that it's true. Much of the starch is already on the outside, and I think that's the stuff that gives risotto its creaminess. I used to make it the traditional way; now I follow a recipe I found on Serious Eats that involves much less babysitting, and the results have been indistinguishable to me.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 7:46 pm UTC
by Zohar
Well risotto rice is very similar to sushi rice, and if you just cook sushi rice without stirring it it's definitely not creamy, so I don't think you're right about it. Maybe it's OK to add a bit more liquid towards the end without cooking, but I still think the beginning of the process must include a lot of said babysitting.

Also, not really controversial opinion but a rant - adding salt to pasta doesn't raise the water boiling level in any significant amount, it just improves the flavor of it. And oil is completely useless when cooking pasta - it just floats at the top anyway.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 8:10 pm UTC
by Izawwlgood
Zohar wrote:And oil is completely useless when cooking pasta - it just floats at the top anyway.
Wat, no it doesn't; as the water boils the oil totally mixes around and helps prevent the pasta from sticking.

Which as I type doesn't really make a lot of sense... Does temperature of oil/water affect miscibility? It must?

Nath wrote:The pressed, seasoned lamb is the stuff I was referring to as Chicago-style gyros, because most of the meat-cones I've seen in the US are from Chicago-based distributors like Kronos. I don't hate it, but it's not the same dish as Greek-style gyros, which is also made with a meat cone on a vertical spit, but the meat is usually pork, and the cone consists of a stack of slices rather than a giant sausage. The accompaniments are also different.
I didn't even realize this was the wrong way. The way you described, the pressed slices of meat that are sliced from the skewer, never tasted right to me.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 9:06 pm UTC
by Nath
Zohar wrote:Well risotto rice is very similar to sushi rice, and if you just cook sushi rice without stirring it it's definitely not creamy, so I don't think you're right about it. Maybe it's OK to add a bit more liquid towards the end without cooking, but I still think the beginning of the process must include a lot of said babysitting.

Sushi rice is rinsed several times before use, getting rid of most of the starch on the outside, and it's still a relatively sticky rice. I've successfully made creamy risotto with almost no stirring until the last few minutes, using a recipe similar to this. The most interesting part of that article is that he tried making risotto the traditional way after rinsing the rice, and ended up with no creaminess to speak of.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 9:14 pm UTC
by bigglesworth
Risotto/Paella/gravy-soaked rice in general is terrible, and gets worse when you make it taste of fish.

Strawberries from outside of England are usually awful.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 10:59 pm UTC
by Thesh
bigglesworth wrote:Strawberries from outside of England are usually awful.


Are you talking about imported into England, or even when traveling? Because when they are in season in California, they are awesome. Out of season, they are crap.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 11:35 pm UTC
by bigglesworth
Even when travelling, though I don't think I ate them when I was in California.

They always seem to be 4x as big, making them 1/4 as flavourful (caused by having 4x as many chromosomes, if you ever want to freak someone out about food they just put in their mouth).

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 12:43 am UTC
by ConMan
Bay leaves. THEY DO NOTHING.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 12:59 am UTC
by poxic
ConMan wrote:Bay leaves. THEY DO NOTHING.

Nonsense. They give my friend the runs.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 1:04 am UTC
by Nath
ConMan wrote:Bay leaves. THEY DO NOTHING.

This is true of the bay leaves I find in my local supermarket, but there are bay leaves that actually taste of bay leaf. I just don't know where to find them locally.

Strawberries just came into season up here in Washington, and they are not awful.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 1:05 am UTC
by Thesh
Scrambled eggs should be cooked quickly, remain runny, and never ever be mixed with cheese.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 1:07 am UTC
by PAstrychef
Certainly the bay leaves you inherited from your grandma won't do much, but if you get nice fresh ones they do a lot. Just crinkle up a fresh bay leaf and smell it.
Runny eggs are a slimy abomination, and cheese is a perfect complement to them.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 1:14 am UTC
by Thesh
If you are going to kill the eggs, you might as well throw some cheese into them. Properly cooked eggs, however, have subtle flavors that are drowned out by the cheese.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 1:29 am UTC
by poxic
Thing is, eggs taste like chicken. Extract of chicken, really. I'm not much of a fan, but they are a useful substance. As such, I will use a couple to hold together a bunch of veggies, cook until the eggs are lightly browned, then add cheese.

And, often, ketchup.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 1:38 am UTC
by Mighty Jalapeno
Nath wrote:
  • Hot dogs are just not that great. Even correctly executed Chicago or NY-style hot dogs.
  • Some kinds of cheese are just fine with some kinds of seafood.
  • Eggs do not instantly become gross when they get browned.

Point The First: As a former sausage slinger, I can assure you that they can be great. It just requires a hell of a lot of toppings, and generally a wiener that contains MEAT.

Point The Second: Uh... duh? That's controversial? That's the least controversial thing ever said, to me.

Point The Third: Damn right. I love egg-crispies when you fry those suckers on high heat in some garlic oil.

Some of my own food issues, AND I DON'T KNOW IF THEY'VE BEEN MENTIONED BEFORE BECAUSE I REFUSE TO READ ANYONE ELSE'S POSTS!!! RAWR CONTROVERSIAL!!!

  • Sometimes Aunt Jemima 100% artificial maple syrup is AMAZING,
  • The only seasoning a truly quality piece of meat needs is some sea salt.
  • Jalapenoes are an acceptable condiment. ON ANYTHING.
  • Salsa does not need to be chunky. It really, really doesn't need to be chunky. STOP WITH THE FRIGGIN' CHUNKS.
  • Mayo is acceptable on fries.
  • Mayo is not acceptable on poutine.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 3:15 am UTC
by Nath
Well, I've had Chicago-style dragged-through-the-garden dogs, with Vienna Beef sausages. So, lots of toppings, real meat, check. And like Chicago-style gyros, they weren't bad, but I couldn't understand why people get so passionate about these things.

The conventional wisdom about cheese and seafood is that you shouldn't mix them. Might just be an Italian cuisine thing. Although I don't think anyone would apply this rule to cream cheese.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 3:30 am UTC
by Mighty Jalapeno
Well, I think the appeal of hot dogs is in the customizeability. I mean, it's pretty much ground meat, some spices and toppings, on a bun. It's topologically similar to a hot dog, burger, pizza... but I guess it all depends on how you grew up with them. White onions, srirachi, jalapenoes, dijon, mesquite barbecue sauce and blue cheese?

Luv.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 4:02 am UTC
by Nath

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 4:19 am UTC
by Thesh
You started losing me at bbq sauce, and it ended at blue cheese.

When it comes to hot dogs, you need good hot dogs, the bun needs to be less than half of the total food content, and onions and mustard are the bare minimum for topping. Ketchup ruins it.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 1:26 pm UTC
by Zohar
Mighty Jalapeno wrote:
  • Mayo is not acceptable on poutine.


I think I'm missing something. Putin?
Image

*one google search later*

Ohhhhh, poutine.
Image
Are there veggie options? Sounds nice.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 1:56 pm UTC
by Carlington
I would like to one-up MJ - mayo on fries is the best food.
A good hot-dog is a proper bratwurst on a bun with sauerkraut and that's that.
Currywurst is the best of the take-away foods.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 1:59 pm UTC
by Mighty Jalapeno
Sauerkraut should not exist.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 2:02 pm UTC
by Carlington
I...you...ugh.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 2:12 pm UTC
by Mighty Jalapeno
Carlington wrote:I...you...ugh.

I assume this means you just tasted it and agree with me now.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 2:16 pm UTC
by Carlington
Perhaps we will have to agree to disagree.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 2:31 pm UTC
by Nath
Carlington wrote:I would like to one-up MJ - mayo on fries is the best food.
A good hot-dog is a proper bratwurst on a bun with sauerkraut and that's that.
Currywurst is the best of the take-away foods.

I can appreciate a good bratwurst more than a good hot dog -- the thicker casing, increased juiciness and coarser grind all make it taste more meaty and less meatpastey. But I like them best with just a squirt of brown mustard on one of those little crusty German rolls.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 2:55 pm UTC
by Роберт
Nath wrote:
  • Chai should not contain vanilla.
  • Some kinds of cheese are just fine with some kinds of seafood.
  • Good brands of instant coffee are better than badly-prepared drip coffee.

I think the drip-coffee one is obvious. The cheese one should be obvious but maybe isn't.

And the Chai one is judgemental and rude. :P

Just because you don't like vanilla in your Chai doesn't mean everyone should bow to your wishes. Bud Light is objectively terrible but some things are just a matter of taste. I say that's the case for browned eggs and vanillaed chai.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 3:48 pm UTC
by Adam H
This thread makes me want to punch all of you in the face. I've never been so disgusted at humanity before.

Maybe a [safespace] tag needs to be added.


My contribution:
  • Ranch dressing is fucking disgusting.
  • All mexican food is the same. And it's all delicious.
  • Hot dogs are amazing and the cheaper the better.
  • Ketchup is generally unnecessary. Fries are delicious by themselves, and burgers are better with other condiments.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 5:19 pm UTC
by poxic
Zohar wrote:Ohhhhh, poutine. Are there veggie options? Sounds nice.

I've had poutine made with mushroom gravy rather than cow-based gravy. It's good for filling your face when you're starving and/or hung over, but it gets a bit much once you're nearly full. Also not very nice once it's cold, iirc.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 5:20 pm UTC
by Sandry
I agree that salt is overrated like anything.
Browned eggs are best eggs. Runny eggs are revolting.
This is probably a vegetarian-specific one... Tofu: it's not that good. I'd rather have beans and lentils. Same thing with tempeh. Seitan is legit awesome, though.
Mushrooms are freaking awful. Yes, all of them. No, I don't care how fancy you get, how you cook them, whether you cook them, etc.
The best sandwich condiment is a combination of mayo, whole grain mustard and Italian salad dressing.
There is totally such a thing as Too Much Chocolate, and it's not even that hard to achieve. Chocolate is better as an accent flavour.

Re: Controversial opinions about food

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 5:57 pm UTC
by Роберт
Adam H wrote:
  • Hot dogs are amazing and the cheaper the better.
  • Ketchup is generally unnecessary. Fries are delicious by themselves, and burgers are better with other condiments.

What about with cheap hot dogs and Ketchup?
Sandry wrote:Mushrooms are freaking awful. Yes, all of them.

Even Shrooms?