So I guess I’m guilty, yes, go ahead and call me Lionel Richie! yes, I’m the Lionel Richie of the culinary world, -why? – ’cause “I’m easy like Sunday morning”, specially when it comes to having a weak pair of knees for newly revamped, relabeled and re-marketed junk food placed strategically in the supermarket aisles so that I can fall for it. And please be advised (to all of you in the R&D dept.) I fall hard for crap like this, but not just a mere fall, I’m talking; Lady Gaga walking through the airport terminal kind of fall.

Alright, you should be asking yourself right now; what is the connection between Lionel Richie, Lady Gaga and a big ass picture of Kraft mayonnaise? – well not much really, it is just a comparative narrative I learned when I ordered one of those “learn at home and get a crappy diploma” course that can be found in the last pages of the National Enquire. Nevertheless I’m here to deliver a verdict, and that my friends is what I intend to do so watch read closely.

Ok, so this is the classic example of a marriage that should have worked but didn’t. We have on one side Mr. “handsome” Mayo, he’s quite gentle and smooth at the same time, we have Mrs. Olive Oil, quite international herself, she’s adored and adulated by hundreds of countries and millions of people out there for her delicious flavor and healthy qualities, the kind of girl mom would have liked you to marry from the get-go. A “Marriage made in heaven” as most supermarket patrons would claim. but not so fast, you salad bar cowboy, yes you! the one that falls for the label, that says “Kraft”, and you say; sure! why not? it should be good, after all; how can you go wrong with Mayo and Olive Oil?. Well, the following is exactly the main reason why I’m writing this painful and yet revealing article who will remain in an absolute state of oblivion behind the last row of the food blogosphere.

This troubled marriage has a distressed liaison, or maybe a fifth wheel, or whatever you may want to call it. I tend to call it the: “her mother moved with us” syndrome, and in this case the mother in law happens to be sugar!, sugar for Christ’s sakes!, how in hell can you put so much sugar into this Mayo / Olive oil blend?, this crap tastes like the vile and evil Miracle Whip! (notice the grammatical inverted similitude, Vile/Evil?),  Coño this is nasty!

In a nutshell:

Would I buy it again? -Fuck no

Would I feed this to a rabid hamster? – maybe

Possible alternate solutions: grab a pile of mayonaisse and mix it with olive oil and that’s it! stop being so fucking lazy!

Cheers!

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Mauricio Jimenez

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Walking through the aisles of my local supemarket I get to find this; a bread baking mix made by Hodgson Mill, and what really gets my attention is the fact that the label states (quite gutsy in a way) that it contains not only herbs but also the almighty and never dissapointing cheese, so I said: why not? let’s give it a try! although I’m not your typical ready mix kind of guy (usually go for King Arthur’s Flour bread flour) I decided to give this puppy a test drive, so here’s my process and ultimate results.

According to the box instructions it is simple to make, although it seems more or less like the company wants you to use this mix with a bread machine, something I don’t have to start with, so from here on it’s old school and that’s it! Knead by hand? -you crazy? crank up that old Cuisinart! I’m in no mood to sweat right now. So I just follow directions to build this puppy up by hand just like your ancestors did in the 1800’s but instead I push the fast forward button all the way to the 1970’s technology! (by the way; I’m pretty much sure my food processor is from 1979…Shhh don’t tell the Williams-Sonoma police!), anyways, so I do the mix just like the box says jadadadadada….

Now I’m drinking my 5pm espresso with no sugar while contemplating the magical powers of yeast acting up, my oven is not that well calibrated so…. box says 350? that means 400 for me, box says use a square bread pan? heck no! I’ll smack it on top of my pizza stone. Now I just have to sit around and wait 35 minutes to see if this thin actually is real bread, we’ll see…

Holy crap! this thing is actually bread! -smells like it, feels like it, but how does it taste? hmmmmmmmmmmmm let’s cut a slice!

-Not bad! not the best bread i’ve ever tasted but i can tell you this: better this than Wonder Bread!

– Add a dab of butter and I’m getting the hang of it. One thing’s for sure about this bread; Croutons made with this bread have to be pretty awesome. Now that I remember… the box called this contraption a “Cheese & Herb” bread, so where the fuck is the cheese here?

I know where it is! in my fridge! Swiss that is because if you get to find the cheese in this mix give me a holler ’cause I couldn’t find it. So, in a nutshell:

would I buy it again?  -probably no

Is it bad? – Not bad

Cheese? -fuck no!

Good for Croutons? – probably killer ones

Good for pizza? – Box says so, not me.

Good for sanwiches? – Actually the sanwiches came out pretty awesome with this bread.

So go ahead guys give it a try and let me know how it goes. Bye!

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Took an afternoon nap and had a dream about this drink, give it a try

On an ice shaker
Ice
1 1/2 oz Patron Silver
1/2 oz Hypnotic
1/4 oz Passion fruit
1/4 oz pineapple juice
Splash of banana liqueur

Shake & strain into a martini glass
add a float of Don Q or Bacardi 151 proof rum

Flag of cherry, banana slice and pineapple.

Created by Chef Mauricio Jimenez

The Official "Charlie Sheen" Cocktail

I’ve been noticing that supermarkets and warehouse clubs such as BJ’s, Sam’s and Costco are misslabeling some of their meat cuts on sale, but the biggest offender to me is the Flap Meat which is not by any strech of the imagination even close to Skirt Steak also commonly known as “Churrasco“. The trick they use is the way they cut it which makes it quite similar to a real skirt steak; but it is not!

Many times (just for the heck of it) knock on the meat cutters window and ask for “real” Skirt Steak, as you may expect they will graciously point at that rough and tough facsimile called Flap meat. The funny part is when you let them know you’re not stupid and you let them know that’s Flap, (watch their faces afterwards! it’s pure entertaiment!)

I’ll show you two diagrams and show you how they differenciate and where this cuts belong to.

  • Caveat emptor: By no means I’m trying to imply that Flap Meat is a bad cut of beef, all I do is to educate the consumer of what they’re really getting for their money.

This is where you Flap Meat comes from: The bottom Sirloin, a section far more exercised by the cow’s legs rendering less fatty and tougher (also cheaper).

This is where your skirt steak should come from, It comes from the “plate” a muscle far less exercised and with a higher and fattier (better quality) softer texture and better flavor.

Mauricio Jimenez

Meat:
Pot Roast- 12-1/2 pounds for 25 servings
Ground Beef- 7 Pounds for 25 Servings
Baked Ham- 10 pound Boneless Ham for 25 Servings.
Chicken- 6 Whole Chickens for 24 Servings
Turkey- A 15 pound Turkey will feed 25 people
Turkey Roll- 7 pounds of turkey roll for 25 people

Salads:
Fruit Salad- 2 quarts for 24 people
Potato Salad- 3 Quarts for 24 people
Vegetable Salad- 5 quarts for 25 people
Salad Dressing- 1 pint for 32 servings
(you may want more, cause this is only for 1 Tablespoon of dressing)

Vegetables:
Lettuce-4 heads for 24 people

Mashed Potatoes- 7 pounds of raw potatoes for 25 people
Baked Potatoes- 25 small potatoes for 25 people (approximately 10 pounds)

Pasta & Rice:
Long Grain Rice- 1-1/2 cups uncooked rice for 24 people.
Spaghetti or Noodles- 2-1/2 pounds uncooked pasta for 25 people.

Beverages:

Coffee-Use 1 pound of coffee for 50 8 ounce servings.
Tea- Use 1 cup of Tea Leaves for 50 8 ounce servings.
Cream for Coffee- 1 pint for 25 servings.
Milk to Drink- Use 1-1/2 gallons for 24 8 ounce servings.

Desserts:
Cake- A 15-1/2 x 10-1/2 x 1 inch sheet cake will feed 24 people
This is usually what is considered 1/2 a sheet.
Ice Cream- 3 quarts of Ice Cream for 24 people.
Pie- Five 9″ Pies will serve 30 People.
Whipped Cream- 1 pint for 25 people.
(however, this is for small dollops)
Canned Fruit- A Seven Pound Can for 24 people

Miscellaneous:

Butter-
1/2 pound butter for 32 people (1 pat each)
(you may want to go with 1 pound of butter to be more generous)
Juice- two 46 ounce cans for 23 4 ounce servings
(I would go with four 46 ounce cans for larger serving)
Potato Chips- 32 ounces for 25 people
French Bread-
Two 18″ inch Loaves for 24 servings

You won't need to loose your dentures for this one.

La Recipe

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1/2 carrot cut into a very small dice
  • 1 rib celery cut into a very small dice
  • 1/2 yellow onion, small dice
  • 2 cloves garlic, mashed
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, mashed
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup “all purpose flour”
  • 1/4 cup Club Soda
  • Sambal Chili paste or Asian Sweet & Sour sauce
  • Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper

Procedure

Preheat the oven at 350 degrees

Cut all your vegetables first and start sauteeing your carrots first on medium heat until soft, then add the rest of the vegetables and saute intil they become soft and translucent. Let it cool.

In a separate bowl season the beef with Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Whisk the egg until frothy and add it to the ground beef, proceed with adding the flour and the club soda. Now add the vegetables to the mix and work it with your (clean hands).

Check for seasonings, and begin to shape the meatloaf into a “cilinder” and place into a well pre-greased pan.

Brush the top with the chili paste or Sweet & Sour sauce (repeat if necessary)

Bake the meatloaf for 25 to 30 minutes until it has reached a temperature between 155 to 160 degrees internal.

Mauricio's "No Intention To Cook" Meatloaf on FoodistaMauricio's "No Intention To Cook" Meatloaf

Well here you are walking up and down the strip wondering what to eat, you know there is plenty of choices out there but Mario Batali’s latest Pepperoni soufflé just doesn’t sound very exciting, and you don’t feel like getting a second mortgage to pay for a meal at Nobu or Tao. If you are looking for something that feels genuine, you want food that is authentic, honest and downright affordable, you’re just tired of the pretentiousness and snobbish attitude that permeates across all the eateries on the strip, then you need to look no further. Chinatown Las Vegas is located within a stone throw from the luxurious Wynn Hotel, just west of the “Strip” and I-15. This Asian enclave is located on Spring Mountain Road, one of Vegas main arteries, formerly known as strip club central, this once run down section of the city is now growing by leaps and bounds, hustling and bustling with thriving businesses, supermarkets, massage parlors, and endless amounts of restaurants. But don’t expect to see the traditional Chinatowns of San Francisco or New York, Chinatown Vegas is comprised mostly of shopping center strips such as the Chinatown Plaza which covers about 85,000 square feet of retail businesses and it is well know by it’s gigantic ornamental traditional Chinese arch known as the “Paifang”.
For the most part Taiwanese businesses are credited for the development of this Asian district; many of them had their beginnings in southern California establishing extensions of their businesses around the Las Vegas valley. However, Chinatown is not only about China; there are plenty of Koreans, Japanese, Vietnamese, and Filipinos (by far the biggest Asian population). Chinatown quickly has become the Vegas foodies best kept secret.
Come venture inside the Shun Fat Supermarket and just marvel at the impressive selection of produce, exotic and fresh, some familiar and some simply unbeknown. The seafood is so fresh it is still swimming in tanks, the lines are long, and the ambiance is just frenetic.
The Asian cuisine here is the real deal; yes, they do have buffets but why even bother with them when you can enjoy a delicious authentic Chinese dinner for two for less than $40 dollars. Among the Chinatown favorites is the ever-popular Vietnamese Pho Kim Long, it offers authentic Vietnamese Pho noodle soup that is to die for. For fiery food lovers there is J&J authentic Szechuan cuisine, this place never ceases to amaze, with its high quality food at fire sale prices, try the “Boiled in sauce sliced pork and lamb.” For authentic Chinese, the highly recommended KJ’s Kitchen, is simply the best Chinese food in town, and the service? Well, that is another story; if you do not mind non-attentive service or non-verbal waiters, this place may be for you.

Asian food fanatics understand that the righteous path to an excellent meal lies not on the décor, the ambiance, or the service, but in the food itself. Last, but not least there is Kapit Bahay (my neighbor) a Filipino fast food restaurant serving buffet style, this is definitely one of my favorites, this restaurant serves the best deal in Vegas. A lovely Filipino lady whom I dearly referred to as “mama” will pile up the fragrant white rice and top it with a generous portion of chicken or pork Adobo and yes, the delicious sour soup is also included, a meal big enough for a Canadian trucker for under $6 dollars. Therefore, now that you have been enlightened by this bit of useful information you will no longer have to be ransacked by the latest celebrity chef of the month’s new restaurant while in Vegas. Welcome to Chinatown; where the food, the energy and it’s people are real.

Restaurant Information:

J&J Szechuan Cuisine
5700 Spring Mountain Road
(702) 876 5983

Kapit Bahay
4115 Spring Mountain Road
(702) 889 4822
www.kapitbahay.com

KJ Kitchen
5960 Spring Mountain road
(702) 221-0456

Pho Kim Long
4029 Spring Mountain Rd
(702) 220-3613

Mauricio Jimenez