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The Waffle Endeavor

June 22nd, 2013 by

Mindy and I have heated discussions about what we can have in the kitchen. We’ve argued about the beefy KitchenAid Mixers (not yet), panini grills (living on borrowed time), toasters (finally found a good one), microwaves (never again), blenders (replaced with an immersion blender), ice cream makers (inconclusive), sous vides (for science!), dish ware (heath and stackable restaurant supply glassware), mortars (granite, soon to be replaced with basalt molcajete), cookware (all-clad and seasoned cast-iron), and lots of other things too.

Waffle-makers would be one of these. For as long as we’ve had these arguments, I’ve been exceedingly against getting a waffle-maker. They are big and unreliably electric, and our kitchen is small and I hate shit that breaks (cuz they don’t make anything like they used to). The idea was floated that there existed cast-iron waffle irons that would not have the same drawbacks as electric waffle makers. I was able to find only one waffle iron (#1100 Old Fashioned) on the entire internet! However, no one that I could find had ever tried one on an electric stove-top like we have, nor could I find any record of someone trying to season such a beast. Whatever! We got one and did both.

The first step was seasoning, and fortunately the internet has an opinion on seasoning cast-iron. It involves flaxseed oil and about six treatments. Normally, this wouldn’t be so bad, but these instructions require drying almost all of the oil off before polymerizing in the oven. It was not so fun on the craggy surface of the waffle iron. Still, I’ll be damned if it didn’t work! It was so non-stick, that the waffles still came off even when I forgot to oil it first!Tyler Grinning and Making Waffles

The next step was choosing a waffle recipe (I’ve never made waffles before, or pancakes, or most anything else you can eat). I just so happen to be tremendously obsessed with bacteria and fungus and sprouting beans and in general using life to prepare my food for me. So naturally (pun-intended), I went for a fermented waffle recipe. Turns out, waffles made without yeast are the brown ales of breakfast pastries—they’ve got a hole where flavor should be. Fermented waffles, on the other hand, have an aftertaste that’s right up there with the finest yeasty lagers.

I’ve always been weak on execution, and last weekend was no exception. It was tricky to get the heat-output of the electric stove right, the timing right, and being unable to get both sides properly cooked made me feel like a busted toaster. Fortunately, the seasoning performed admirably, and the recipe itself tasted great.Tyler Displaying a Fresh Waffle

But this weekend, though! My technique improved and the waffles were much better—the best I’ve ever tasted! At last, I have a way to burn through the gallon of maple syrup I unreasonably purchased! I’m thinking I might re-season one of our cast-iron skillets and try a similar recipe with pancakes. It feels weird to be this excited about breakfast…

Best. 30th Birthday Gift. Ever.

November 21st, 2011 by

To celebrate the end of my 30th rotation around the sun, I invited some friends to Crawfish King in the International District last Saturday. I’d never been there before, but a friend from work whose culinary taste and skill I admire recommended it. I’ve been to Crab Pot and had a good time, but this place makes Crab Pot look like Sizzler. Anyway, we got crawfish and sauce all over ourselves and it was fantastic.Fantasy Statue

Even before we ordered food, my friends had perched a cardboard box of unusual size upon the table. After navigating (with assistance) the styrofoam puzzle within, an incredible form emerged: two chicks at the same time.

The statue was purchased from a strange store in Leavenworth that appears to specialize almost exclusively in naughty statues. Our favorite is a busty pirate named “Trixie”, but she is also life-sized and requires some creative engineering to fit on a coffee table. My drinking buddies understandably opted for the table-top version.

I’m sure Mindy is reevaluating our relationship accordingly. ^^

Links to More Delicious Foodstuffs

September 13th, 2011 by

Bobby Flay Quesadilla

  1. Obscene double-decker, grilled zucchini and goat cheese quesadillas topped with tomato-basil salsa from some dude named Bobby Flay.
  2. The infamous cherry pizza. The awesome magazine that published this recipe folded in June, so I do have the original in case the link ever breaks.
  3. And a new favorite of ours: Quinoa and Avocado Salad with dried fruit, almonds, and a lemony vinaigrette.

Delicious Food

August 22nd, 2011 by

This site needs an update, so here are some shots of delicious foods I made in the past two weeks.

Stuffed Zucchini
Stuffed zucchini using the zukes we swiped from Jennifer’s garden a few weeks back. The recipe is Zucchini Stuffed with Feta and Dill. It’s definitely a recipe for zucchini lovers. But my all-time favorite zucchini recipe is Zucchini alla Scapece, which is basically lightly fried zucchini slices marinated in balsamic and mint.

Cherry Pie
I also made this Cherry Pie using the awesome pie cherries the Amick parents sent home with us. I drained the cherry juice into another vessel for a day in the fridge while they thawed, and then made this pie using a teeny-tiny star cookie cutter I had laying around. I added some orange zest, but the orange we had was super-fragrant and overpowered the pie. I later mixed one part cherry juice to one part standard orange juice and drank that, which was super tasty.

Both pictures feature our insanely awesome Heath plates. We started collecting a new set of plates because the old ones Tyler bought had really stupid bowls that were not good for eating soups on your lap (very important in this household with Movie Nights at least once a month), plus the matching plates were not oven safe. Since we don’t have a microwave, being oven safe is also a huge plus. I highly recommend Heath Ceramics if you have the extra cash to spare on plates that will last you a lifetime. They’ve been around since the ‘60s and aren’t going anywhere, so it’s also easy to add new plates as they break or you decide you need more. I also just scored an an awesome vintage salad bowl made by them, but that is for another food post.

Amick’s Valentine’s Day 2011

February 14th, 2011 by

HPIM1641Made your Mom a great dinner and did the flower thing.  She made some great Valentine’s Day cupcakes

In Ukraine

July 5th, 2010 by


From Munich, we flew in to the airport in Kiev, Ukraine, where Vlad’s uncle kindly picked us up. The next day, we wandered out to see Kiev’s Golden Gate, which was a lot of fun to climb inside. Nearby was the kitty statue pictured here with me.

To get to the Golden Gate and just about everywhere else that we visited in Kiev, we went by subway. Subways in Ukraine tend to be highly stylized, with mosaics and marble and granite used to beautiful effect. This seems to be fairly common in eastern Europe, and it was one of my favorite aspects of the trip. A few subways were also very deep, presumably for protection against nuclear warfare, with high-speed escalators just to get people in and out in a reasonable amount of time.

Kievo-Pecherska Lavra

Seattle Trip

May 30th, 2010 by

HPIM1446 HPIM1449 The Mom unit and I travelled to Seattle to see Mason and Dieter and to see the WWU Junior class exhibit. Very cool exhibit and WWU rocked! Had a great early dinner at an Indian restaurant – Mom had a Mango Lassi and we had some great food out of their Tandoori oven.  Check out Mason’s new haircut!  Mom was freezing as we visited the Tacoma Glass Museum (Mason – Dieter's room divider HPIM1445HPIM1444 remember our visit?).

Fish for Dinner

March 18th, 2010 by

HPIM1417 Anyone having dinner on Saturday nite will have fresh steelhead (caught Thurs. afternon)!

Whoa, these wine glasses are serious business

March 14th, 2010 by

Hey y’all. Mindy posted some pictures of our new wine glasses a while ago and it’s high time I ‘splained ‘em.Stacking Wine Glasses

These wine glasses are the sequel to our fantastic beer glasses and they use the same serious-business, full-body tempering (apparently using heat and not chemicals). The tempering requires an increase in glass thickness, but results in strong and stable, long-lasting glassware. They’re extra short for stackability, which also adds a bit of stability. I like ‘em, and Mindy’s even warmed up to them.

I conned Mom and Dad into getting a set of 12, cuz I had to order ‘em by boxes of 48 for $200. I found the best deal at with free shipping and some sort of discount (they have sales a lot). I’m going to give the 6 of them I have left over to Dieter. Hopefully these will hold up to the harsh realities of Dieter’s roommates. I’ll be bringing them down the next time we come to visit, hopefully in the next week or two.

New Pizza Peel

March 1st, 2010 by

Used my X-mas present twice. Helps make great pizza. Ya’ need lots of cornmeal evenly spread out under the dough to make sure it slides off cleanly. Thanks Mindy & Tyler!