wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
1. There are new-Who and Torchwood novels, right? Are they any good? (My library doesn't have any, but there's ILL.) I've read, like, one good media tie-in novel in my life. Well, maybe three...

2. An entire plate of roasted veg is not working for me as a dinner. What entree can I serve alongside? Special snowflake preferences: Ideal entrees would be vegetarian (dairy, eggs, and soy okay), or using sausage (TJ's and WF sales provide decent sausage), or easy-to-prepare fish. We're currently roasting some combination of Asian and traditional sweet potatoes, whole shallots, regular and Chantenay carrots, turnips and rutagabas, parsnips, and golden and red beets. Just olive oil, a bit of black pepper, and a bit of salt is what's going in. They come out nicely caramelized on the edges, though not at all wet. (I skip the parsnips and turnips.) I just don't know what to serve with them. Things like lentils and so on seem a little too carby.
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (clamp-mkr-cookingme)
I have this here Dark Chocolate Pudding recipe which I generally make in the microwave, because it doesn't burn that way (it is a from-scratch, eggless recipe).

I have three very ripe bananas. We hate eating ripe bananas, but we like banana pudding. I've never made it, though, so any ideas on how to combine them with the recipe to make either banana putting or chocolate banana pudding? I hate to just try it.
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
I have a package of chicken sausage (links) with pumpkin that I really need to use up. It's good stuff from the farmer's market; it's just that I think it'll be on the sweet side and I didn't want to waste it on a tomato sauce that I don't think would really complement it.

I was intrigued by the notion of a nut-and-cream sauce from Bittman's book but I don't feel like playing with the blender, so any other ideas on what to do with 'em? I don't think they're quite strongly flavored enough to eat by themselves.
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
Thinking of doing this "mahogany turkey breast" recipe for Thanksgiving if we decide not to do a whole turkey--seems a bit silly with only 3-4 people coming, and only 1 person really likes turkey drumsticks (well, that I've heard--still waiting to hear back from another, which could change things in favor of whole turkey, which is totally doable; they're rather simple to do).

Anyway, I was thinking about adding garlic to the above recipe and was wondering where you'd add it. I was considering just putting in a lot of whole cloves with the vegetables, if they'd survive. What do you think? I really think this recipe needs garlic...

I'd also need a substitute for sherry. I have mirin, apple juice, and your usual vinegars and sugar and all. Which do you think would work best?

I'm not too worried about holding down the fat level, as the original recipe is, so I might get rid of the faffing about with the plastic bag at the end unless that'll make the gravy really fatty.
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
Thanks for your help before! The soy chorizo chili was very good, and we're definitely going to have huevos con soy chorizo at some point, given how nicely it browns.

Tonight I want to make baked ziti from the same vegetarian cookbook, because I have fresh mozzarella on hand (I really wanted to make the lasagne, but it doesn't call for that and the ziti does). However, the recipe calls for a whole pound of mushrooms. I *hate* mushrooms in every non-Asian recipe I've ever had, but if it's a whole pound, I'm guessing the recipe's going to be a bit messed up if I don't put in something. That's enough to affect both flavor and, like, mass. :P The sauce otherwise only calls for tomatoes, garlic, pepper, and diced onion, so I plan to increase the garlic at least.

An option at the end of the recipe calls for adding up to a cup of ricotta, which I'm thinking about.

Any thoughts?
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
I bought soy chorizo. Yep. So I need to cook it up, and sautee some diced onions till nearly caramelized, and put 'em in some chili. I've only got the one nice big pan, though, so in what order do you think I should cook the soyrizo and the onions?

Love,

Me
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
Tried making oven-fried green tomatoes last night. Not a success. They were OK, but...eh. I'm not trying to make them again (with any technique) until I've had them cooked by someone who knows how to make them. Despite living 16 or so years in the South, I've never actually HAD them before.

My pharmacy is out of my BCP. I know that pharmacies get deliveries and things happen just like any other store, but I was still kind of shocked. But he called some others in the same chain and I'll just go to the one a couple miles away to get it.

Since we started using Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything Vegetarian, our kitchen trash has looked a lot more like "stuff that might turn into dirt someday" and a lot less like "stuff that WALL-E will compact into a cube someday." Cool.
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
Based on "Fast Tomato Sauce" in How to Cook Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman.

- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped (size depends on how much you love onion. Me? I love onion.)
- 1 24-32 ounce can of whole tomatoes, preferably unsalted, drained and roughly chopped
- Minced garlic to taste
- Salt and coarse-ground black pepper to taste
- Dried or fresh/frozen basil, oregano, parsley to taste
- Red pepper flakes to taste

Heat the oil in a 10-12-inch skillet over medium heat. When it's hot, add the onion and cook till soft, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes. When the onion's nearly done, throw in the garlic. Add the tomatoes, salt, black pepper, and red pepper. Cook until the tomatoes break up and the sauce thickens, stirring occasionally, about 10-15 minutes. Add the herbs when there are a few minutes left. If it's too thin, add some decent-quality tomato paste.

This has been different every time I've made it, but it's been good every time. I think it tastes better than Classico, and I really like Classico.
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
We enjoyed "WALL-E" a lot. Afterwards, Overanalysis Brain turned on and I had a few issues with it and sf tropes in general spoilers, I think, and a huge tangent )


Really, there's so much to love about this movie. I'm glad Overanalysis Brain didn't start up till the ride back. We really liked the movie and recommend it to pretty much everyone.

Also, cute character designs in the film and in "Presto," and likewise on the preview we saw for the movie about the swashbuckling mouse. For years I've complained that most 3-D animation fails at cute--somehow they've missed out on the big pupils and other elements of cute. But aw, mouse! Cuteness! The previews we saw ... well, is there a CHANCE that Eddie Murphy is FUNNY again? That preview looked mildly amusing in a 1980s kind of way, and if they didn't put all the funny moments in the preview (I hate it when that happens) then it may actually be worth seeing. Maybe. The other previews looked pretty crappy, but at least I found the target audience for "Beverly Hills Chihuahua": the cretinously laughing couple behind us, oy. Or maybe they were drunk. [livejournal.com profile] assaultdoor was amused by the trailer for a different reason--he claims the Aztecs actually ate chihuahuas (or a dog similar to what became the chihuahua).

The theater was about evenly split between couples and adults w/children, so that was good. The kids mostly behaved.

By the way, the ending credits are pretty and clever, and while there's no zombie monkey at the end, there is a teeny visual joke at the very end.

And [livejournal.com profile] assaultdoor hasn't seen "Hello Dolly!" and he needs to.

...




I'm hoping to make baked macaroni and cheese tonight for the first time. The recipe indicates you can mess with the cheese; it calls for 1 1/2 cups graded cheese "like sharp cheddar or Emmental" and 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan. I've got the Parmesan, about a cup's worth of sharp cheddar, a bag of Trader Joe's 1/3 less fat shredded "Mexican" cheese (cheddar, asadero, I forget), and a wedge of fontina. What combo do you think I should use for the 1 1/2 cups?
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
Official website; Chronicle article. I want to go if there are enough cheap or free events ... and if it's not competing against something else, haha. Hey, [livejournal.com profile] kyspaz, want to teleport over for it? :p



(and re. the candle thing: I know there are some issues with it, but still, I think there's something to it.)

OMG.

Jun. 29th, 2008 07:42 pm
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (clamp-mkr-cookingme)
My [livejournal.com profile] kyspaz-style black bean dip was only OK, not up to [livejournal.com profile] kyspaz' standards. But! The corn was AMAZING!

We got 4 ears from the farmer's market last week--sweet and fresh. Steamed them with just an inch or two of water (as recommended by Mark Bittman). Then put on a bit of butter, some smoked salt, and some shichimi togarashi (Yagenbori Nakajima brand, "since 1625"!).

WOW!

Delicious!

I got the shichimi idea from Bittman too--it's one of his ideas for popcorn, but oh, so good on corn. And the smoked salt really set it off. I wouldn't recommend it without butter or a very sweet corn, because it's actually fairly hot.

I'd eat two more ears of it right now if I could.

Windchime

Jun. 18th, 2008 06:49 pm
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (ghibli-so cute-me)
Windchimes are traditional symbols of summer in Japan. I'm not really into windchimes because I don't like the noise, but I have to confess, I really kind of want this Totoro one. They have a Jiji one too!

(Hey, [livejournal.com profile] kyspaz, Harry reminds me of Jiji! I kept thinking he moved like a cartoon cat, but I couldn't think which. He's just the inverted color scheme one, is all. ;)

I also really want this DVD of the Ghibli museum, since we went there on our honeymoon but only have pictures from outside the museum.

(Please note that Jlist has many X-rated items, so don't click around if you're at work, etc. I'm just too lazy and grumpy to dig up the jbox.com link.)

Speaking of DO WANT, I flipped through How To Cook Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman while chilling at [livejournal.com profile] kyspaz' awesome new house, and I really want it. Err, the book. Welllll, the house too. But I meant the book, because it's a really good guide to cooking freely with veggies and fruits and grains. It has tons of lists and variations and suggestions on how to put meals together. So it's an excellent choice for non-vegetarians like me as well as vegetarians like [livejournal.com profile] kyspaz. Check it out--it's hard to describe how useful it could be until you look at it.

I'm sorry I'm posting so much. Just pretend it's spread out over the past 3 weeks, OK?

Hmmm.

Feb. 22nd, 2008 06:43 pm
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (clamp-mkr-cookingme)
I wonder how to tell if my fresh (i.e., not dried or canned) lima beans have gone off.

They has a flavor.

And having not cooked fresh beans, ever, I have no idea if it's a normal flavor or a "Fancy some lima bean liqueur?" flavor. If you know what I mean.
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
I forgot to mention that the other day [livejournal.com profile] toratigris came over and showed me the basics of how to crochet. Boy, it was like my hands were broken alien marionettes. Just couldn't get 'em to cooperate. But eventually I understood the basics of what we were doing, and I even crocheted a little strip of something. Sadly, though, because I'm SO bad at learning physical stuff, I think she's going to have to show me all over again next time. But I hope there is a next time. :) I think it has the potential to be fun.


Someone with medical knowledge go fix the strep throat article on Wikipedia. It's almost incomprehensible in parts. There are a lot of run-on sentences, some of which can't be fixed if you don't know what you're talking about.

Man, I wish I could go to the doctor on Sundays... *groan*


Another note on the "projectile" discussion: Merriam-Webster online gives "projectul" as the first pronunciation, and "project-tile" as the second. I wonder if this is a recent shift (assuming your overwhelming preference for the latter is standard). One problem with dictionaries as guides to English "as she is spoke" is that they tend to be a generation or three behind the times.

And a random personal note: As a kid and young adult I had to actively learn to pronounce words like "futile" and "sterile" and "missile" etc. etc. in the SAE way instead of with a long i. I don't think this was because of any British influence on my speech, but because of learning the words from books instead of hearing them. (And yes, I know the long i is standard in some other AE dialects, but they're not ones I speak otherwise, so it would sound pretty out-of-place.) Anyway, it's annoying that SAE isn't consistent on this point--we don't say "reptill," after all.


Dear Firefox Developers,

I don't appreciate your Windows Vista-like efforts to keep me from controlling my own environment. Your caching is so aggressive that I can't check updates I'm making to my websites, and you've seen fit to get rid of the option that let me turn off caching. I guess I'll go play with about:config ...

No love,
Me


By the way, for [livejournal.com profile] unkyrich's New Year's Eve party I made something called butter mochi, using the recipe from the nifty 'Ono Kine Grindz blog. It's something a Japanese-American classmate of mine from Japanese class at CSUEB made and brought to class once. I assume it's a result of Hawai'i's fusion of Japanese and other culinary traditions--even the name is kind of shocking to most Japanese people, I think. However, it's very tasty, satisfying, wonderfully chewy, and not too sweet--although it is rather rich. Apparently it's also good toasted in a toaster oven. Anyway, it's pretty easy to make, so give it a try if you feel adventurous.
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (clamp-mkr-cookingme)
Success! It wasn't the nicest-looking cake due to my inherent sloppiness and having to work fast. I got some good suggestions from you guys for icing, but I went with something from Joy of Cooking which could not be any easier:

Melt 10 oz semisweet/bittersweet chocolate.
Stir in 1 C sour cream.
Stir till glossy. Spread on cake. (Warm up if it gets too thick or dull.)

Delicious and a good counterpoint to the cake and the European cherry jam that I used as filling.

And I think my client/friend liked it. He seemed to be having a really good time, and was charmingly squee'ish over the books we got him.

Gah.

Aug. 25th, 2007 09:40 pm
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
I just attempted to bake a chocolate cake from scratch for the fist time, and everything went just fine ... except that it called for baking soda AND baking powder, and I only put in the latter. So it's QUITE flat. Oops. Guess I'll buy a birthday cake tomorrow...

EDIT: It tastes very good, actually. Just...like a really dense, really eggy brownie. Not something you'd want to ice and serve.

Sigh, now I have to decide--try Trader Joe's new Celebration Cake, or try to bake it again in the morning? I'm just afraid the Celebration Cake will be too overly sweet for the birthday person's tastes.

If anyone's still reading this, are any of the plastic-can frostings any good? I seem to recall that there was one brand which tasted better than the others. (If I make cake, I won't also have time to make icing, probably, because my favorite recipe needs to chill for 2 hours or something.)
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
I just did the math and my deeeelicious homemade dark chocolate pudding (best served warm) is only about 241 calories and 1 fat gram (maybe .5 g sat fat, depending on your cocoa).

Okay, so that's not much less in terms of calories than 2 Reese's Cups, but it's a lot better on the fat count, and it takes longer to eat, and it's warm. :p

Mmm.
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (clamp-mkr-cookingme)
I made an awesome breakfast this morning: folded omelets with herbed chevre and fire-roasted asparagus inside. It was one of those random ideas that tasted just as great as I imagined it would.
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
Get your Peter Beagle-approved, autographed new release of "The Last Unicorn" DVD here. Because Beagle has been screwed over, this is the ONLY way to make sure he receives anything from sales of the new DVD. Please don't buy this film anywhere else.

EDIT: I just ordered one, and I had a slight glitch in the order process. I used the contact e-mail address and wrote them to be sure my order was OK, and someone (actually, I believe it was the owner of Conlan Press) answered me back about 29 minutes later. On a Sunday, even. I'm very impressed!


I need to start reading fiction again. So I'm reading Cory Doctorow's Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom in free daily chunks from Daily Lit.


My eyes are SO ITCHY. I'm going to go have to ask for something stronger/different compared to what I'm currently taking (Deconamine + Flonase). I blame the acacia trees. They're pretty, but I'm thinking that I'm allergic. Naturally, acacia trees are one of the main decorative elements at CSUEB. The specific pollen driving me nuts might be something else, but it's more than likely some kind of tree. As several people have said, why do the sex lives of trees have to be so public?


Does it seem odd to anyone else that Harry Potter is about to come to an end? (The series, I mean ... probably ...) It just seems like not that long ago that I thought it would be practically a lifetime before the series concluded. (NB: Youngsters for whom we have always been at war with Oceania there has always been Harry Potter need not reply!)

Speaking of HP--if you pre-order the final Harry Potter book from Borders, the clerk will ask you what you think about Snape. Depending on how you answer, you'll get a "trust SNAPE" or "SNAPE is a very bad man" sticker, or both if you're truly on the fence. I got both and I'm seriously considering putting them both on my car. Side by side, actually--the decorations in the corners line up nicely. I probably won't, since it'll all be resolved in a few short months.


Dear American Library Association, does it REALLY cost you $7 to mail a poster? Maybe it does, but Cambridge University Press, I do NOT think it costs you $6 to mail a fairly thin paperback from New York (not from England, mind)--and then they charge $1.75 for each additional book. Both organizations just lost sales from me; I'll do without the ALA poster rather than pay $21 for a poster, and I'll get the Cambridge book from Amazon. (Cambridge also wanted to charge me CA sales tax.) Cambridge sent me this great-looking end-of-year sale with 30% off all TESOL books, but by the time I calculated shipping and tax, it wasn't worth it at all. Boo.


The real story behind General Tso's Chicken. I am something of a food snob, but there are a lot of fake Chinese Chinese fusion dishes that I really like, and I love a good American-style General Tso's, because I love sweet+spicy together. (I guess that combination occurs more naturally in Sichuan food, like yuxiang qiezi/"fish"(garlic)-flavored eggplant.)

Also, here is an excellent article on easily making onigiri at home. And it answers my question about making yaki-onigiri, which I LOVE even unfilled. I have some fish-free and MSG-free furikake (mostly dried vegetable bits and toasted sesame seeds) I want to try mixed in sometime.


I have another suggestion for people looking for prospective dates and new LJ friends: Check out the page of LJ-using authors at The White List, add your favorite authors, check their userinfo to see who else has friended them, and then check out the userinfo for those people till you find some people who look interesting. Just leave 'em a note saying you saw they are also reading Famous Author's journal, and they look interesting themselves, and so you hope they don't mind if you add them. Yes, this is perfectly polite in the weird world of LJ.

There's Diane Duane, Pat Cadigan, Judith Tarr, Elizabeth Bear, Ellen Kushner, Kij Johnson, Scott McCloud, Pamela Dean, Steven Brust, Suzy McKee Charnas, Tamora Pierce, Roman Dirge, George R. R. Martin (I did NOT know he had an LJ), etc. (NB: For purposes of friends recruitment, you'll want the ones with the little person icon, as in [livejournal.com profile] kijjohnson, because those are real LJs with userinfo, not the ones with the little broadcast RSS icon, like [livejournal.com profile] shetterly.)
wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
EDIT: It's fixed. Yay [livejournal.com profile] phinnia! Boy, I get dumb when I mess up in the kitchen.

I put on five raw "chicken Sicilian sausages" (about an inch thick). I was trying to pan-broil them according to Joy of Cooking. First, I forgot to pierce the skins, which Joy doesn't mention, and they erupted out the ends. Next, they're clearly browned on the sides and raw in the middle. I should have done the poaching-then-panfrying thing, but I didn't, because I've used raw sausage maybe once before. How do I make sure they get cooked through?

Argh.

(EDIT: Well, now the skin is the same tan color all over instead of pink on the sides...)

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wintersweet: Main character from Yokohama Shopping Project: Just being alive means you've made a clear profit. ☆ 人生、生きちょるだけで丸儲け. (Default)
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