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Silversea Water Cooler: Welcome! Part Five

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Lois, Eataly is amazing. But it might be a pain pre-show as it's about 20 blocks south of your theater. So it would be a cab ride from the Beekman to Eataly, and then another to the show (or a nice leisurely 30 minute walk right up Broadway, which is what we would do). IMO it's worth the stop but check out the menus and see what looks good.

 

They have a rooftop restaurant which is lots of fun, a more casual pizza/pasta place which we like a lot, and a fancier restaurant. We have eaten in all of them at least once; most more than once. They also have a couple of more casual countertop dining spots. Lots of great choices there. I am like a kid in a candy store when we visit...

 

Steakhouses are a big thing in NY - many choices. Good luck picking one!

 

 

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Hi JP,  I always appreciate your input:classic_smile:. A 30 minute walk after dinner? Not sure I want to do that......my thought process is to take a cab from the hotel to whatever restaurant I am having dinner in and hopefully

 the restaurant is within a 10-15 minute walk to the theater.  It will be Daylight Savings time so it will still be light outside:classic_smile:

 

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Today’s Sunday lunch is going to be a couple of freshly made  baguettes which are currently cooling with Marldon sea salt and some Cumberland sausages and slow braised caramelised red onions and some Colmans mustard.  It is the simplest things that give the most pleasure.    These are the bguettes cooling down.

 

 

A8D6091C-5354-4817-84FD-41A5243D6A85.jpeg

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14 hours ago, Lois R said:

Hi Terry, I don't care what the man does but you know this is not just prostitution but from what I have read, these girls are pretty much slaves.....it is supposed to be BAD trafficking. And IF he knew about that? Then (In my opinion) he is a real scum bag and he needs to be treated as such.

 

Yes, lots is bad, bad, BAD!! about this story involving Pats owner Robert Kraft and others in this part of Florida that has lots of the rich and elite visiting often at these types of places.  Much involves people from China, the female sex slave trade, etc.  One story indicates that Kraft had "made multiple visits to Orchids of Asia, arriving by chauffeur, police say."  Much more to be reported.  Media reports have billionaire Kraft out in Hollywood doing the Oscar party circuit this weekend.  Who was it that said "the rich are different"?

 

It is the Oscars tonight!!  None of the movies this year get me that excited.  For sure, it will be another long, LONG TV program with lots of fluff and boring speeches.  But many, like me, will tune in just to see and be able to discuss what were the worst highlights. And, the most over-the-top outfits!!??

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

AFRICA?!!?: Fun, interesting visuals, plus travel details from this early 2016 live/blog. At 44,399 views. Featuring Cape Town, South Africa’s coast, Mozambique, Victoria Falls/Zambia and Botswana's famed Okavango Delta.

www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2310337

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I forgot to post about my trip to the Greek Festival yesterday:classic_smile: It was smaller in size than I thought it would be......it was held inside the Morocco Temple which has a LARGE ballroom (I guess you would call it that)…...BIG SPACE...….they had food, both savory and sweet along with multiple booths of jewelry, fashions, home type items, etc.  I didn't eat there (I love Greek Food) but I didn't stay for lunch. (I went in the morning). I did end up buying a really pretty necklace and earring suite. Silver leaf design and I made sure to ask the owners about where it was made. They said everything they had was "Made in Greece". I didn't want to buy something that had "made in China" on it. (It was a Greek Festival after all). They seemed very professional and gave me their business card.  I am pleased with the items and will be taking them on my upcoming cruise as well as wearing them to work.

As for lunch, I ended up going to a local place for a DELICIOUS Ahi Tuna grilled salad.:classic_smile:

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Jeff, great bread as always. We found a nice rib steak on sale and I took advantage of a break in the rain to grill it.

 

Lois, your weekend sounds way more fun that mine has been, but too bad you couldn't stay for lunch. After going in last night to do an urgent procedure, I finally got to bed at midnight only to get a wake-up call at 5AM. Couldn't get back to sleep afterwards so we gave up and went grocery shopping early, were done by 7:30, then went in to work for a few more hours. Hopefully tonight is better so I am not too tired for the upcoming week.

 

But I can't complain too much. Most days I like what I do. And it pays the vacation bills. Just need to figure out how we can go part-time and then we would have time to travel more...

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Hi JP,  I didn't plan it right. I could have run errands and then gone to the Festival but its ok. We have a couple of Greek Restaurants here and they were the ones serving so I can get the items here already.:classic_smile:

 

I thought you worked in the ER...….was this a surgery that was previously planned? I am sure whoever the person is will be recovering nicely:classic_biggrin:  and hope you sleep well tonight too.

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No more ER for me. Did that for a few years on a part-time basis to cover the bills when I went back to school for my Masters in Public Health in the late 1990s. More than enough for one lifetime.

 

In my current job I cover the ICU every third week. A hospital patient needed an urgent procedure done and the folks covering in-house weren't able to do it so I went in to do it. Nothing as fancy as real surgery, but it needed to be done and luckily I still know how. Good to still be needed and since it was only 8PM I can only complain a little. Better to be needed at 8PM than at 2AM.

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19 hours ago, UKCruiseJeff said:

Today’s Sunday lunch is going to be a couple of freshly made  baguettes which are currently cooling with Marldon sea salt and some Cumberland sausages and slow braised caramelised red onions and some Colmans mustard.  It is the simplest things that give the most pleasure.    These are the bguettes cooling down.

 

 

A8D6091C-5354-4817-84FD-41A5243D6A85.jpeg

 

They do look good,

Any chance of the recipee?

 

 

 

 

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OK … I will ... but ON LY if you promise that you will actually make some.   It is more than a recipe and involves some untraditional bread making approaches that make perfect bread that is extremely easy for anyone to make.  It combines no knead, autolyse and ultra hydrated bread and French steam baked.  It is extremely easy once you know how .... much easier than the bread making you would have learned previously. And it is perfect baguettes.

 

You will need to confirm that you will buy a tin and a ridged steak griddle that fits inside your oven to make it a French steam oven.

 

image.png.be98f06dc27cc72820d71af7676581da.png

 

image.thumb.png.65565e6b89e2013febcb40e1aa5ff633.png

Edited by UKCruiseJeff

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I'm an experienced bread maker but this method of bread making is totally counter intuitive and produces unbelievable bread. It is disarmingly easy and you think it can't work. It does. If you are a bread lover then you should make this a daily ritual. It involves a long time but very little actual work or activity and once you have done it a couple of times much less mess than tradtional approaches as water is used and no mixer to clean.

 

Night before … do just before you go to bed. Do it every night.  This is for two baguettes ish.  Double for four ....

 

Put your mixing bowl on the scales. Take around 300 gms of flour, (hard bread making flour …. I use Canadian …. and I also prefer to use around 250gms of white and I add around 50 gms of rye flour which is the way that traditional bagueete makes do ...) ….. and mix it in a bowl with half a teaspoon of instant yeast and a teaspoon of salt. Just lightly mix it for a second or two with a wooden spoon handle until it is all combined.

 

Once the flour is mixed add 240 gms or so of water. This is extremely wet ie 80% hydration. Most bread is around 65%. More water makes better bread. You do not need a mixer but instead simply combine all the water and flour until there is no loose flour left in the bowl with the wrong end of a wooden spoon. This takes 10 seconds. No kneading or further mixing. Put a shower cap over the bowl and leave out in a cool place over night.

 

When you get up the following morning it will be twice the size with some surface bubbling. Spray your work surface with some water and scoop out the dough with the scraper. The mix will look silky. Wet your hands thoroughly and just fold it gently a couple of times, “ball” it and drop it back into the bowl. Do this again whenever you walk past if for at least a few hours and every hour or two. Don't be precious about this. Forget the timer. Just whenever you think about it … no soone than an hour and any time up to every three hours. So perhaps two or three or four times.

 

An hour or a bit more before you want your fresh baguettes, dust a board with some flour and scrape out the mix, dust your hands with flour and cut the mix in two with a larger dough sraper if you have one. Do not over handle or knock out the air. Take one of the tow pieces and fold a long edge inwards so you have a sort of fat sausage shape. Press the folded in length into the dough so it's sort of sealed (think of when you played with Plasticine) and then roll the dough from the middle back and forth to stretch it out to a rough baguette shaped bit of dough that is just a little shorter than the tin. Do the other one. Plonk into the tins.  Cover the bread with a tea towel. Because it has flour on the surface you need not treat the tin in any way as the dough will not stick. Turn the oven on to around 230 ish. And let it warm up for up to an hour or so with the rdiged steak griddle in the bottom of the oven.

 

After an hour or so the baguettes would have doubled in size. Don't bother trying to perfect using a bakers lame, but instead use a pair of scissors to curt diagonal overlapping cuts deep into the bread ie at about 45 degree cuts. As many as you need. Spray the bread with water and drop some sea salt on it if you want. Put the bread in the oven spray inside the oven and drop half a mug of water onto the griddle and slam the door shut so steam is produced. Take the bread out when it is the right colour and cooked and put it on a rack to cool with a tea towel over it.

 

This method produces what to me has the flavour of the best baguettes I have had in France and is also sort of “sour-dough light” using the biga/poolish method that the French use,

 

These are a lot of words to explain the easiest method of baguette making I know which also happens to produce the best bread I have ever made.If they are mishapen and rustic looking  .. so  much the better. 

 

Ask any questions ... and post some piccies!

Edited by UKCruiseJeff

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Jeff, a big thank you for that. I live in Madagascar and frankly the bread on offer here (despite the French influence) is pretty awful.

I will try to source the baking tin and griddle (could be tricky) and look forward to trying this out - and posting the results

 

Thanks again 

Nick

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Wow - where do you live in Madagascar? We went there in 2016 and loved it. But I don't remember the bread...

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17 minutes ago, Reef Knot said:

Jeff, a big thank you for that. I live in Madagascar and frankly the bread on offer here (despite the French influence) is pretty awful.

I will try to source the baking tin and griddle (could be tricky) and look forward to trying this out - and posting the results

 

Thanks again 

Nick

 

 

Hi Nick,  your most welcome.  I do like to get us men bread making.  🙂

 

For what it's worth ... bread is really important to me and I have spent a lot of time learning and studying.  I even have a professional Neapolitan pizza oven in my kitchen that gets up to 950 degrees or so for an authentic 90 second Neapolitan pizza.  If you use the steaming method I devised you actually have a French bread steam oven.

 

Once you have your stuff get into a daily ritual and make your two or four baguettes every day.  Because I used a lot of words to explain something so so simple it sounds more than it is ... but it is so easy and after the first four five times it will be second nature.  It becomes a part of the rhythm of the day.  I suggest this is even truer for you than for me becasue you will be shocked at how good this bread is.  If you are a real man and an emotional man it will bring a tear to the eye.  😉

 

This approach apes the exact approach many traditional French bakers use except they sometimes use a sourdough starter but I prefer this sour-dough lite approach and the rye flour adds that little bit of character.  I know that once you tried it a couple of times and get it right that the simplicity will draw you in it will become a key part of your eating day and a day when you don't do it you will mourn the baguette.

 

Also .... you can make double the quantity say 4 baguettes.  Take two out when they are firm and coloured and put them in a bag and in the cupboard amd then rebake on day two so that you are only baking every other day.  The 2nd day bread to me tastes pretty much the same as the 1st day bread.

 

Good luck.

 

I hope you do give it a try.

Edited by UKCruiseJeff

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40 minutes ago, jpalbny said:

Wow - where do you live in Madagascar? We went there in 2016 and loved it. But I don't remember the bread...

I rest my case-  you don't remember the bread!

We live in Tana the capital.

The country as a whole is something else, but Antananarivo is not. But then people don't come to the island to stay in Tana for any length of time.

I'm sure you would have seen some unforgettable sights from forests/parks/wildlife to white sandy beaches.

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37 minutes ago, UKCruiseJeff said:

 

 

Hi Nick,  your most welcome.  I do like to get us men bread making.  🙂

 

For what it's worth ... bread is really important to me and I have spent a lot of time learning and studying.  I even have a professional Neapolitan pizza oven in my kitchen that gets up to 950 degrees or so for an authentic 90 second Neapolitan pizza.  If you use the steaming method I devised you actually have a French bread steam oven.

 

Once you have your stuff get into a daily ritual and make your two or four baguettes every day.  Because I used a lot of words to explain something so so simple it sounds more than it is ... but it is so easy and after the first four five times it will be second nature.  It becomes a part of the rhythm of the day.  I suggest this is even truer for you than for me becasue you will be shocked at how good this bread is.  If you are a real man and an emotional man it will bring a tear to the eye.  😉

 

This approach apes the exact approach many traditional French bakers use except they sometimes use a sourdough starter but I prefer this sour-dough lite approach and the rye flour adds that little bit of character.  I know that once you tried it a couple of times and get it right that the simplicity will draw you in it will become a key part of your eating day and a day when you don't do it you will mourn the baguette.

 

Also .... you can make double the quantity say 4 baguettes.  Take two out when they are firm and coloured and put them in a bag and in the cupboard amd then rebake on day two so that you are only baking every other day.  The 2nd day bread to me tastes pretty much the same as the 1st day bread.

 

Good luck.

 

I hope you do give it a try.

 

Jeff,

I have a le creuset griddle pan, I'm hoping that will be Ok for the steaming in the oven. Also, I have a gas oven which is notoriously difficult to regulate the temperature. However if anything it veers toward being too hot which is probably not a bad thing.

 

IMG_20190225_143940906.jpg

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10 hours ago, jpalbny said:

No more ER for me. Did that for a few years on a part-time basis to cover the bills when I went back to school for my Masters in Public Health in the late 1990s. More than enough for one lifetime.

 

In my current job I cover the ICU every third week. A hospital patient needed an urgent procedure done and the folks covering in-house weren't able to do it so I went in to do it. Nothing as fancy as real surgery, but it needed to be done and luckily I still know how. Good to still be needed and since it was only 8PM I can only complain a little. Better to be needed at 8PM than at 2AM.

Hi JP, oh...ok, for some reason I thought you were in the ER......glad you were able to help this patient:classic_smile:

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35 minutes ago, Reef Knot said:

 

Jeff,

I have a le creuset griddle pan, I'm hoping that will be Ok for the steaming in the oven. Also, I have a gas oven which is notoriously difficult to regulate the temperature. However if anything it veers toward being too hot which is probably not a bad thing.

 

IMG_20190225_143940906.jpg

 

 

That will be perfect.  Just take the oven down to say 190 ish and open every so often and turn the bread round so one end doesn't burn/cook more than the other. 

Edited by UKCruiseJeff

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Reef Knot, no doubt that we liked the rural areas better than Tana. We had to spend a total of 3 nights there in the process of arriving, leaving, and connecting various parts of our itinerary. At least the hotels ranged from pleasant to really nice.

 

Our favorite was Maison Gallieni, which is a 4-room place where the Consulate of Monaco is! Quite exclusive. 

 

Looking forward to another trip back. I have to read my travel blog now and then to remind myself how much fun it was. I wonder if I took any pictures of bread? 

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