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Comments by jmason

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Posted on April 29 at 12:40 p.m. (Suggest removal) thinks your predilection for Philly is clouding your predictions! Great team, great up the middle and one of the strongest defenses in the league...but let's talk about why the Capitals lost...and why Montreal won: Goaltending. And for that reason, I got to say Boston is the favorite here.

Brian Boucher, while he's been standing on his head lately, is not a Stanley Cup netminder. He can't hold a candle to Tuukka Rask, who is asserting himself as one of the league's premier goaltenders. Just think, he beat out that used sieve of a Vezina winner Thomas out of a job. The B's also get back Savard on Saturday. It's going to be a tough haul for the Fly-guys.

But other than that, I think you're pretty darn close.

Bruins in 6.
Pittsburgh in 5.
San Jose in 7.
Chicago in 7.

From: Stanley Cup predictions: Conference semifinals

Posted on May 25 at 4:20 p.m. (Suggest removal)


The account was given by Terry Kindlon, the accused's attorney. He seemed quite convinced that what he was saying was an honest account and the charges against his client would be reduced at the very least. I simply reported what he is claiming as a defense after interviewing both Stutzensteins, not hearsay. Certainly, it would have been nice for the prosecutor to comment on them, but he was unavailable Sunday.

From: Man charged in tenant’s death

Posted on April 10 at 8:23 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Hey...if Wilkin has a bag of M&Ms, I want to know about it...and given these pesky cubicle walls, that would be made much easier with twitter...

From: Twitter

Posted on March 31 at 2:58 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The DEC says the chips will dry fairly quickly and shouldn't attract the beetles, unlike the whole timbers. It's a shame too, because there are some real nice hardwood timbers being felled in this neighborhood.

The DEC's plan received the blessings of the U.S. Forestry Service, which has battled oak wilt in the central southwestern area of the country. They are under the belief that chipping the trees is perhaps the only sure-fire method to ensure the fungus isn't spread.

The resulting chips are supposedly slated for burning anyway at a biomass plant. Interestingly enough, the DEC has been working with other state agencies(NYSERDA I think) to supply wood chips ordinarily produced from trail clearings and related projects to companies building biomass boilers. I'm not sure if the trees from Glen Oaks are part of this, but it would make sense.

From: Crews begin felling red oak trees

Posted on March 18 at 5:23 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Jeff, the answers to your corned beef quandary lie in the amount of time and temperature you're cooking your cut. I'll have to disagree with my compatriot in sports: Whiskey is better drank than marinating a beef that's already pickled. However, Mindy is indeed right: The best type of corned beef you can buy are the "points," which also happen to be the cheapest cuts that are out there(between 99 cents and $1.29 last I checked).

The key to any good braise(and I like to braise instead of boil like some eateries do) is getting a good sear down before you start. Take a chef's knife, carving knife, exact-o knife, or some other sharp blade and 'score' the fat-cap(fat side) of the beef. Make quarter-inch deep cuts parallel to each other and about a half-inch apart. Then do the perpendicular direction as well. You should end up with something that looks a bit like a barbecue cross-hatch. Then use fresh cracked peppercorn to season the outside; this will provide both spice and a small buffer when the meat first touches the pan. Now get a pan ripping hot and sear that sucker for a good 10 to 15 minutes. Once the 'cross-hatch' is browned and slightly crispy, flip it and do the same thing to the other side.

Now you're ready to braise. Take a disposable aluminum roasting pan(these work the best), slap the meat in there with a liberal topping of thick-cut carrots, chopped cabbage and the seasoning packet that comes with the beef. Now take your choice of beer -I routinely use Killians Irish Red -and pour one can or bottle over the beef. Then take two sheets of foil and cover the pan tightly, crimping on the sides(this is why I use disposable pans, because the edges bend a bit creating a real tight seal).

Now you wait. And wait. This is where that whiskey or any left-over beer can come in handy. My corned beef stayed in the oven at 325 degrees for about three to four hours. In the mean time, don't check on it, don't break the foil, don't fuss with it in any way, shape or form. You must keep constant temperature on the meat, otherwise your braise may turnout poorly. What will happen is all the tough fibers in the meat will be broken down, transforming it into a really tender cut. It never fails, especially when that meat is marinated as heavily as corned beef is.

And if in doubt...remember you can always ask your newsroom culinarian for a bit of help...

From: My Irish curse

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