Thanksgiving Leftovers

11/26/06 | by JAdP | Categories: Food and Drink

Now that you've cooked all of that food, what do you do with the leftovers? There are three things that I do.

Turkey Stock

Take the back, carcass, and any leftover thighs or drumsticks, and stick in a pot with the normal onion, garlic, celery, carrots, parsnips, whatever aromatic veggies you like, parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme, bay leaf and cloves in a bouquet garni, add the defatted pan drippings you saved, and a mushroom or vegetarian stock that you always have in the freezer &#59;) and boil all day long on the simmering bricks. Removing any meat from any bones after 45 minutes or so.

Turkey Tetrazinni

Take the meat you removed from the stock, and any other leftover turkey, and cube it. You can even use up any leftover wild mushroom and giblet gravy that you might have. Update: Silly me, I forgot the pasta - one pound of fettucini, cooked, drained and mixed with the meat in the casserole. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Place the meat in a buttered casserole dish, and cover with a sauce made of:

  • melt one stick of butter in a heavy pan
  • sauté 1/2 pound of cremini mushrooms, and add in some soaked, minced porcinis
  • blend in 1/4 cup of flour and allow to cook, without much browning, over low heat for 3 minutes
  • whisk in 2 cups of the stock
  • then 1 cup milk
  • then 1/2 cup white wine [from what you'll serve with the meal
  • and 1 cup heavy cream
  • add 2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
  • and a couple of grinds of peppercorns
  • then grate fresh nutmeg and stir it all up and pour over the meat & fettucini

Top with 3/4 to 1 cup of soft, finely diced bread crumbs mixed with grated parmigiana and pecorino cheese.

Traditional Thanksgiving Leftovers Sandwich

I know of two places that serve this year round: one is in Pennsylvania, but it's been too many years and I don't remember the name of the place. The other was Two Fools Café in Half Moon Bay, except they've shut down. /sigh

Use your favorite sandwich bread, make it open faced or closed, on a roll or sliced bread, toasted bread or not, with some mayonnaise or basil aioli on the bread or not, the sandwich filling is sliced turkey, sliced stuffing [or, this year, the wild mushroom bread pudding] and cranberry sauce. Another variation on the preparation is to use an herbed focaccia or slab bread, even a ciabatta would work, slice it in half between the top and bottom, put in the filling, and grill it as a panini.

Letti, thank you for stopping by. I actually worked, about 25 years ago at Westinghouse Marine Div. with the grandson of the Japanese farmer who brought mandarin oranges to the USA. Your pies look great. I don't think you can find real mince meat any more, the one with venison and suet in it. :p

I hope that everyone had a great Thanksgiving. Enjoy your leftovers, or tira, as my partner would say.

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Thanksgiving Supper 2006

11/22/06 | by JAdP | Categories: Entertainment, Food and Drink

While this isn't a food blog, anyone who knows me, or has followed my blog, knows that I'm a foodie and that I usually post holiday menus and recipes here, as well as some of my offbeat tastes. Those who really know me, know that in my career path from energy research to aerospace to information technology, I took one fork that wasn't linked to the others by data management and advanced analysis: food in the late '80's/early '90's, both through my desert sauce company, Montara Magic, and by cooking with Pasta Moon and some of the caterers around the Coast.

I don't normally post Thanksgiving recipes for two reasons.

  1. Our tradition has been to go to the Sardine Factory in Monterey - but when we do, I often wind up cooking on the weekend anyway, so that we have "leftovers"... But why blog Thanksgiving recipes after the day is done?
  2. I do a very traditional Thanksgiving day meal.

But this year, as last, my iMac loving parents are having cold like reactions to their flu shots. And Robert Scoble, now a fellow coastsider, has asked for recipes. I'm also cooking everything but the turkey today, so I'll have time to blog as I cook.

Don't forget to preheat your oven(s) and simmering bricks. &#59;)

Right now, I'm doing the cranberry sauce. First let me say, that I'm most impressed with the Paradise Meadows Premium Cape Cod Cranberries that I bought this year - only 10 rejects and 5 stems in three full bags. Here's a "per bag" recipe:

Spiked Spiced Cranberry Orange Sauce

  • 12 ounces fresh, whole cranberries, washed and picked over for stems or wrinkly, bursting, rotting rejects
  • 1 glass [~6 oz.] of red wine - this year, I'm using a 2004 Caldora Montepulciano d'Abruzzo
  • 2 or 3 Satusuma mandirin oranges - remove the rind, cut in half along the torus cross-section and remove any seeds
  • one cup turbinado [raw] sugar
  • a bouquet garni consisting of a cinnamon stick and 5 cloves
  • Put it all in a heavy pan [I use porcelain coated cast iron] and over a high heat, stirring often during the cooking, until the cranberries start to pop, about five minutes, than remove to a lower heat [I use simmering bricks over a gas flame] to simmer until the oranges release their juices [get mushy], remove the spices and cool overnight in a heavy crock or non-metallic bowl - may be served whole or passed through a food mill or processor
  • Update: I forgot to say that one reason to use the Satusumas is to buy the ones with leaves attached, and then use any remaining whole oranges and leaves to decorate around the bowl of cranberries on the groaning board.

I'll update throughout the day as I finish, but I'll list the dishes now.

Wild Mushroom Bread Pudding

A vegetarian version in a pan that can also be mixed with mild sausage and stuffed into the bird, this is an incredible dish.

Update 20061121;11h56: I use a mix of dried and fresh mushrooms, so the first step is to soak the dried ones [this year porcini and morel] for an half-hour in a 50/50 mix of white wine and warm water [never use stale water from the hot water tap for cooking]. The only fresh mushrooms I'm using this year are cremini and portabello. And while they're soaking, maybe I'll have lunch.

Update 20061122;12h41: The dried mushrooms have soaked, so it's time to cook again.

  • 1 medium red onion, Italian torpedo if you can find it, sliced
  • two cloves of garlic, two carrots and two stalks of celery, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon each of unsalted butter and olive oil
  • sautée until the vegies are soft
  • About 1-1/2 pounds of fresh mushrooms and four ounces [dry weight] of the dried mushrooms are used; remove the dried mushrooms from the soaking liquor and pass the liquor through cheese cloth or coffee filter or white paper towel; rinse and squeeze the soaked dried mushrooms and then mince them; clean and slice the fresh mushrooms, and sautée the mushrooms
  • Add fresh sage, chiffonade, and fresh thyme leaves, salt and freshly ground peppercorns, finish the sautée, and add a glass of white wine - whatever you'll be serving with the meal is always best and at least a cup of the reserved mushroom soaking liquor
  • Set aside the vegies and start on the bread pudding
  • Cube some bread - less than 1/2-inch on a side; you can use heavy bread, light bread, even brioche; I prefer a potato rosemary batard and use about two loaves
  • Make the "custard" from 1-1/2 cups of heavy [not sweetened] cream, 2 cups of milk, 6 eggs, salt and pepper to taste
  • Pour the liquid custard over the bread cubes and squeeze the custard into the bread cubes until they are saturated; lightly toss in the sautéed vegies, and place in a heavily buttered casserole dish or lasagna or roasting dish [glass or ceramic, not metallic]
  • Bake at 350°F for about an hour, until the top is brown and a knife stuck in slight to the left of center comes out clean
  • If your going to use this to stuff the bird, reserve the amount that you'll need later in the day, or, if you cooked the bread pudding more than 24 hours in advance of stuffing the bird, reserve the vegies and bread that you need, and make up custard to use the day you'll be dressing the bird; add two-to-four links of broken up, cooked mild sausage to the vegie mixture before tossing

Mashed Roots with Garlic and Brown Butter Sage

Ok, ok, basically mashed potatoes with added rutabaga and turnip goodness, boiled with garlic and using a brown butter sage sauce as well as cream to get to the finished product.

Update 20061122;14h26: That really says it all, but let's just add some measurements: 1/2 potato per person, 1 rutabaga and 1 turnip for every 4 potatoes [potatoes of choice are yukon gold or red creamers], 1 clove of garlic per potato. Leave the potatoes whole, skin on or not as you like, cube the rutabagas and turnips, add the root vegetables, including the garlic, to salted boiling water and boil until a fork easily pierces a potato [15 minutes maybe], drain, [if you left the skins on the potatoes, cool and remove now if you want]. Put 1 teaspoon of unsalted butter per potato into the hot pan, leave the butter to melt and then wait until the edges of the melted butter turns brown, add chiffonade sage [1 leaf per potato or to taste], let it sizzle for a minute, add 2 tablespoons of cream per person and stir until the cream bubbles, add the root vegetables back and mash 'em with a potato masher, keep stirring until heated through. One alternative is to stir in a consistent direction until the mash is like taffy - about three hours. :p

Sweet Potato Casserole

Roasted and mashed, or sliced thin with a mandolin and layered with the custard, this is a must for Thanksgiving.

Update 20061122;14h55: You could be roasting the sweet potatoes whilst the bread pudding is baking. You need three cups of mashed roasted sweet potato, so start with two 8-inchers.

  • sweet potatos, roasty, toasty and mashed
  • 1/2 cup of turbinado [raw] sugar added to the mash
  • salt as you like it and you might like parika, cayenne or black pepper, or not
  • this custard is 2 large eggs, 1/2-cup of milk, a tablespoon of cream and you can even add pure bourbon vanilla [I have about a gallon left from my Montara Magic days] or maple syrup; add the custard to the potato mixture
  • top with a mixture of 1/2-cup brown sugar, 1/2-cup flour, 4 tablespoons melted butter and a 1/2-cup of toasted whole pecan halves
  • bake at 350°F for 30 to 45 minutes

Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts

Maybe not that traditional, but the best way to prepare those little green balls that I've ever found.

Update 20061122;15h20: I really do like this dish, though I can't remember where I found it. It's not a family tradition.

  • Clean the outer leaves, and any loose, damaged or brown leaves from around the brussels sprout, slice off the woody stem, cut an X in the bottom and let sit in salt water for about 15 minutes - oh, and use about 10 sprouts and 4 chestnuts per person
  • Cut an X in the shell of each chestnut and roast at a low temperature up to an hour or at a high temperature for 10 or 15 minutes, or buy vacuum packed or jarred cooked, shelled chestnuts, for as much as I like old fashioned cooking, in this case it is a real pain in the nicta and very time consuming
  • Heat a pint of vegetable cooking stock, and add the sprouts and chestnuts, cook until tender which I've seen take as little as 15 minutes and as long as 45

Wild Mushroom and Giblet Gravy

Or leave out the giblets if you're going for Tofurkey instead. :)

Update: The gravy won't be done until tomorrow, but here's how I do mine. Take the pan drippings from cooking the turkey and separate off the fat. While that is settling, in a pat of butter and a splash of olive oil, sauté the minced shallots, diced up giblets, and sliced mushrooms [maybe reserved from the bread pudding, maybe not]. I reserved some of my minced wild mushrooms that I had soaked earlier - add those now. Remove from the pan. Add [per cup of finished gravy desired] a tablespoon of butter and allow to brown slightly, then add a tablespoon of flour, mixing into the butter until all the butter is absorbed. Keep scraping from rue from the bottom of the pan, until the flour is cooked - about 3 minutes. Add a glass of your white wine, slowly, mixing it into the flour, and then add a glass of the dried mushroom soaking liquor that you reserved, stirring it in. Cook down to the desired thickness - there should be a cup of gravy. Add a chiffonade of sage, and some thyme leaves.

Stuffed Turkey

I won't be cooking that until tomorrow. But here's the basics: remove the fresh turkey from the brine that its been soaking in overnight, take enough of the Wild Mushroom Bread Pudding recipe [don't mix this more than an hour in advance of stuffing the bird] with added, broken up and cooked mild sausage, to fill the body and neck cavities of the bird, put peeled garlic cloves under the skin of the bird [usually takes at least one head of garlic], brush bird with a rosemary twig dipped in olive oil and herbs de Provence before putting in the oven and as the basting method, cook it as you normally would. Add white wine and maybe stock [vegie stock, white stock - chicken and veal - or turkey stock made from the neck] to the bottom of the pan. This year, I'm sticking with the mushroom bread pudding, so I'll just have onions, carrots, celery and rosemary twigs in the cavity of the bird. Get the skin nice and brown, and cover with aluminum foil to keep if from burning if it's browned before the turkey is done. If you do that, uncover the bird for the last 15 minutes of cooking.

Update: I've been using the term chiffonade. Let me explain. One can only chiffonade larger leaves: think basil, sage, mint. Wash and dry about eight leaves, and make a "cigar" out of them. That is, layer them by overlapping them about half-way along the long axis, and roll them up so they look something like stogies. Sharpen your knife, the sharper the better. Slice along the "cigar" cross-section, so that your getting very thin slices of herb.

Update 20061122;19h47: I totally forgot about the Pumpkin Soup. I guess because the first step - roasting the pumpkins, was done over the weekend. And, of course, there will be a green salad, breads, cheese plate, olives, other marinated vegetables and dessert: pumpkin pie and cranberry walnut apple pie.

Pumpkin Soup

  • Take the "lid" off two sugar pumpkins, scrape out the seeds and fibers, and roast for two hours at 325°F
  • Scrape out the meat of the pumpkin, and allow to cool
  • Toast the pumpkin seeds in the oven - they make great garnish later
  • Bring 8 cups of fire roasted vegetable stock to a boil, add the roasted pumpkin meat, fresh thyme, fresh ginger grated, a bouquet garni of bay leaf, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, dry sherry and sautéed onions
  • Cook for two hours, then purée in the pot or by passing it through a food mill
  • bring back to a boil and tip in a cup of heavy cream right before serving

Rest coming up throughout the day. Have a great Thanksgiving. Enjoy.


Police Action in Moss Beach

11/09/06 | by JAdP | Categories: Current Affairs

So why did two Sheriff vehicles race up California heading towards the back of Moss Beach at 10:08 p.m. tonight? One SUV and one sedan.

Anyone know?


Safari or FireFox2 on MacOSX

11/08/06 | by JAdP | Categories: Computers and Internet

Since getting my MacBook Pro, I've been using Safari. When necessitated by a web site not supporting Safari, I would use Firefox 1.5 on SLED10 under Parallels.

I know many folk like Camino, but I was pretty happy with Safari. Many things, though not all, seemed to go even faster in Safari vs. Firefox under my old Windows Dell laptop. I really like the true integration of applications that Apple has in its Tiger apps. Live spell checks in forms and the character palette come to mind.

But when Firefox v2 for MacOSX came out a few weeks ago, I installed the same day. I haven't hit an incompatible web site yet AND it seems to render even faster than Safari, especially on our blogs' administrative anti-spam page. The integration seems to be there as well, though I'm not sure if the Firefox spell checker uses the MacOSX spell checker dictionary or not, but the character palette works. My extensions [now called add-ons] that I used previously in Firefox all work.

Firefox is now my main web browser again.


Funding your Business in the US

10/31/06 | by JAdP | Categories: Business

Today at the ANZA Technology Network conference, I attended the Funding your Business in the US Forum. This year ANZA video taped all of the sessions. Viki Forrest, the CEO of ANZA introduced the moderator, Kevin Matsushita, Vice President Emerging Technology Practice, Silicon Valley Bank, and panelists:

  • Jeremy Liew, Partner, Lightspeed Venture Partners, doing early stage investing
  • Jane Lindner, Managing Partner, Jane Capital Partners
  • John Scull, Founding Managing Director, Southern Cross Fund
  • Carol Sands, Managing Member and Founder, The Angels’ Forum and The Halo Funds both doing very early stage investing
  • Saeed Amidi of Plug & Play and General Partner of Amidzad early stage VC [he gave an example of his recent activity where he helped a start-up raise 2MM$ that closed this week & will begin raisinq a 10MM$ Series A startinq next week with 90% committed by the seed investors

Here are some of the things I took away from this session.

  1. USA/Silicon Valley and Australian/New Zealand funding; looking at total funding over life of company AND how the investors can make a lot of money; smart money vs. dumb money; look at corporations & grants as sources as funding; Investors are getting smarter all the time; ROI is first & foremost; A seed round is usually done because a company is not ready to go to market or there are market questions to be answered & may range from 100K$ to just over 1.5MM$ and smart investor does the seed to get seat at table for later rounds; if the Angel/Entrepreneur makes a stupid evaluation during seed it can block later deals; smart & right are judgement calls; LONG VIEW FIRST; Raising money is an ART not science; Equity & ROI for investors, founders, later management team, etc.; VCs looking at 25+ companies at any given time & will invest in one that quarter; the scarce resource is the time of the partners [investors], always speak truth & deliver on promises
  2. Funding is an important part of overall strategy; milestone driven not comparative valuation; assume no revenue until B round; milestones are events & outcomes not time or simple events [traffic to a site not launching a site]; discussion of Silicon Valley investors funding overseas companies - technologists may be overseas but Executives & marketing/sales must be here; investors want to know that their message is being heard which requires face-to-face meetings & constant feedback
  3. How does an entrepreneur better their odds of being the ONE company funded out of the hundreds of requests received; a "warm" introduction, especially from one of their portfolio companies' officers/founders; the ability & work required to get that introduction is akin to that required to get into a potential customer or hire a great recruit; an angel that was funded by a VC is a great person to give that introduction
  4. What might entrepreneur hear that means it's not a good fit: “Keep in touch”; if a VC is interested they'll set up the next meeting; VC money is not the only source of funding; if you can't interest an Angel look for the signal in the noise - that is, what is wrong with your business model, idea, market, etc.
  5. When founders flounder? Expect transition in management team; Board responsibility is to shareholders by assuring good management, good team, all needed resources; Lightspeed is founder friendly and doesn't necessarily follow this rule, but in many instances CEO is almost always swapped out especially by later stage investors
  6. Q&A: Board of Advisors should be investors from start-up space, Carol likes Advisors in early stage not a Board of Directors, Angels often see great ideas from researchers/technologists who could never manage, whereas VCs rarely see A ideas from C teams

Many of these points I've heard many times over the years. One thing I would like to add is that as a founder of a company, one should always be reevaluating their position in the company and should ALWAYS hire a person to do a job better than they could do it themselves. That always applies, whether it is choosing partners as co-founders, hiring to fill out the management team, building out the full team AND MOST ESPECIALLY when looking at your successor for the many roles you'll fill throughout the life of your baby, er, company. You may start out as Chairman, CEO, President, lead technologist, lead sales, and chief cook and bottle washer. You may change roles as the company grows. You must always be aware that your role(s) at one stage of your company's life may be better served by someone else at later stages. The other part of this is that you must be able AND WILLING to delegate both work AND RESPONSIBILITIES. The two must be commensurate.

As an entrepreneur, you should also be looking for complimentary talents and personalities to your own and your initial team. This is as true for the investors you may get as it is for your operational team. And always have fun.


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I'm Joseph A. di Paolantonio and this blog has two main foci: my interest in food, and my interest in the future. This provides a look into my personal life, and is separate from my consulting work…though there will be overlap. I am an independent researcher, working as a strategic consultant and I'm an executive with over 20 years of commercial experience with a technical interest in the intersection of Internet of Things, with advanced data management and analysis methods. I view data science as a team activity, and I feel that the IoT must be viewed as a system. I am leveraging my past activities to understand the adoption and impact of the IoT; first, as a system engineer in aerospace, where I developed Bayesian risk assessment methods for systems within the Space Transportation System (including the Space Shuttle), Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer, Gravity Probe B, and many more, and second, as a enterprise data warehousing, business intelligence and analytics professional. Between my aerospace and IT careers, I indulged my hobby of cooking by starting a food company, Montara Magic, centered around my chocolate sauces. My education combined chemistry, mathematics and philosophy. I performed research into molten salt fuel cells in graduate school, and in photovoltaic materials for a short time in industry. The lure of bringing the human race into space was strong, and when I was offered the chance to combine my chemistry and mathematics skills to develop new risk assessment and system engineering methods for space launch and propulsion systems – I couldn't resist. I perform independent research and strategic consulting to bring value from the Internet of Things, Sensor Analytics Ecosystems and data science teams.I am a caregiver, a lover of science fiction and speculative fantasy, and my passion to learn has led me to a pilot's license, an assistant instructor in SCUBA, nordic and alpine skiing, sea kayaking, and reading everything I can, in as many topics as I can.

View Joseph di Paolantonio's profile on LinkedIn

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