Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Sunday, October 28, 2007
I altered a recipe from my new birthday cookbook from my mother, The Cook's Illustrated editors' cookbook. Which goes against the very idea of using a perfected recipe(which is all they have in their book), but I never make a recipe correctly, ever.
Mix 1 cup flour, 1-2 teaspoons sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda together in a bowl. In a 2 cup measure, mash 1 banana and whip it until it is mostly smooth. Then add milk(I used almond breeze) to the one cup measure mark and mix again, then add one egg and whip it up. Then add 2 tablespoons melted butter to the liquids and mix again. Add liquids to the dry ingredients. Spoon little pancakes onto a med-hot oiled skillet. While the wet batter side is still up, place two thin slices of banana on top. Flip over then they're ready. The banana caramelizes a bit and gets soft while the second side cooks. These are very very good with sliced banana and Hawaiian coconut syrup on top. Like I ate way more than I would have if they were just regular style pancakes.
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Saturday, October 20, 2007
Yesterday was the second time in the past couple weeks that I have forgotten that my grandfather died, it just happens for a second but it really knocks me for a bit of a loop. It's such an overwhelming surprise to be going along, thinking about him in the present and what I'll say to him the next time I see him, but then I remember that it isn't possible.
Since Matthew's parents are in town, they wanted to tour the Midway, so we went along(we'd never gone before). At one point while I was traveling through the corridors of Engineering I briefly thought, "I've got to tell Grandpa about going through the engineering section and tell him how difficult it looked to work in that section." I was a little worried that I'd become hysterical while wandering around a museum; the emotion was that strong.
It was enough to make the rest of the visit a bit less cheerful, well that and the fact that we were touring planes that were designed for and that had killed many people. I think the museum has a certain weight of darkness just by virtue of it's purpose.
All in all a very interesting opportunity to understand the military and to understand my grandfather from a totally different perspective, one I never would have been able to imagine. I kind of wish I'd done it while he was alive.
Thursday, October 18, 2007
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
All that little tangent to say, I'm not writing a food blog(Matthew!) so don't mistake it for that =).
Instead of making a full on cake I decided to make a half batch of the recipe and to put the batter into little shell shaped madeline molds that I stole from work(they were rusting at the bottom of a bin). They were darling and delicious, but not too sweet, which is why I always like Clotilde's recipes. I, of course, did not follow the recipe exactly; I never do, much to Matthew's consternation. I left off the topping since I was not making a normal cake and I didn't put in the chocolate chips because I'm still trying to lose a bit more weight and I was already proud of myself for baking anything at all, baking being an activity I've tried to avoid since the tragic weight gain of '05.
Basically the impetus behind this project was a couple containers of grated zucchini in the freezer. It was going bad, I had to save it, so I stuck it in the freezer. Like I always say, "I'm a child of the Depression without ever having been within 50 years of it, all because my dear Grandmother passed on her depression era values so well when I was a child. So, I didn't even get to grate the zucchini in my new baby processor, but he didn't seem to mind.
Matthew really liked the wee cakies too, so they must have been good!
Monday, October 15, 2007
I think it's funny that I bug Matthew relentlessly about how silly he is for keeping all his old socks with holes in them, but then I do the same thing. Of course I insist on suffering through the day with my heel or a couple toes sticking out of the sock. The big toe sticking through is the worst, especially when I try to use it to keep the hole tucked under my toe, therefore I walk funny and my foot gets sore.
There has to be a better use for these socks. I always say to myself "well, someone, somewhere doesn't even have socks so who am I to just throw partially deteriorated socks away?" My grandmother has always used her old socks and undies and t shirts and long johns as rags. She has tons and tons of rags all cut up into neat little squares. But I don't have room to keep rags. My mother taught herself how to darm socks and so spent hours and hours darning one sock just to have it feel very uncomfortable under her foot. Can I make a rug out of the socks? I don't know, it's a thought that crossed my mind. Would that just be so beyond tacky that Matthew would lock me up in the tacky asylum? I don't know, possibly! And then, once the rug wears out what to I do with what's left? I think some people make paper out of their rags but it doesn't really work very well.
So, my burning, all-consuming question: what the hell do I do with all this old clothing that I can't wear? (I suspect that Rachel has a very Ukrainian answer for me=) I hope so)
Saturday, October 13, 2007
since my plan to walk to the ferry/work have been brutally interupted by the rain. I staunchly planned to walk no matter what the weather was like. When I heard rain I still got up; I dressed in my silly little striped stockings and short pants(so i wouldn't have to endure wet pant cuff syndrome, and cause they're friggin adorable). I bundled up so I wouldn't get too wet but about 1/2 a block out I realized that the wind and the much harder-than-expected rain had totally defeated me. I would not make a very good seattlite. But in my little head I tell myself their rain isn't as meanacing and it wasn't this August but I am sure they have storms too. Of course that is the Only kind of rain San Diego gets, storm rain. So I'll catch up on the blog post I was going to do last week among that flurry of blog posts, speaking of storms, that was quite the little rain storm.
So, recently I've seen my fair share of crooks and creepies. Finally! I think I noticed someone shoplifting. I still don't know 100% for sure but I'm fairly sure I saw a rather snooty little girl(about my age) dressed in pointy black shoes and a bell skirt(she looked rather fashionable and well off) steal a pair of beer mug sunglasses. She stole them for her boyfriend! Wicked wicked girl! I think she had an older woman(her aunt?) helping her, wicked wicked woman! She distracted me while this little girl tucked the glasses into her bag but I didn't see her do it, I just noticed that there was one pair of glasses missing but I didn't know if she had set them down somewhere else until I went over to look after she left. I should have smacked her to the ground and made her confess, but I didn't. I'll just speak of her evilness for years to come.
The other crook who stole from the little shop was a crazy man. He bought a small item and when the other girl gave him his change(I didn't ring him up, I came to the register half way through the transaction) he fumbled through the money as though counting it and then claimed that she had given him a $1 instead of a $10. Well, we believed him and thought it was very odd, but promptly forgot the situation, even when he was being frisked and arrested on the tree directly outside the shop door. Yes, we are that stupid =) that naive! We just thought he was creepy. It was only when we were closing up that we realized that the missing $9 from the register meant that he lied to us. Such naive little girls we are.
It has rather shaken my trust in everybody, which I forget that I shouldn't do, trust everybody. I'm a silly silly little girl! easily duped by creepies and crooks at every turn in this evil evil world!
Monday, October 8, 2007
Well the new little processor has been introduced to the kitchen. He Cheerfully sliced mushrooms, grated cheese and blended milk and eggs for a tasty quiche. I made a quiche since that was something that required the processor for each component(would have worked for the crust as well if I hadn't been evil and used a trader joe's pre made one). He has met fellow kitchen aid product, stand mixer. They will be quite a pair in the kitchen.
I'm so excited to see what other things this fine little machine can do!
Okay, so my friend gave me permission to post these darling photos. I just about hopped onto a plane bound for Taipei when I saw these this morning. These were taken in the Hello Kitty Lounge at Taipei's airport. How cute!
I kind of figured that in keeping with the theme, I should pink out her face instead of blacking it out. I think it's kind of a cute idea = )
So, I find that I often impress myself with my own cooking. I've always prefered either mine or my mother's home cooking over anything else(a point of contention for Matthew and I since all I do is compare every meal to something my mother makes or to what I could make). So, last Saturday I invited our friends Pat and Matt over for a yummy Pork loin roast dinner with mashed potatoes, broccoli salad and desserts from Bread and Cie.
The Pork Loin recipe as adapted from some odd Betty Crocker cookbook that was given to me as a gift.
One pork loin(mine was very small, not quite two pounds)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
3 garlic cloves chopped fine
mix all but the loin together and then rub it onto the loin(I wash all my meat) after you've stabbed the loin a few times with a sharp knife; try to get some of the rub into the stab holes.
Roast in a skillet or other roasting pan for an hour pouring like 1/2 cup water into the pan half way through cooking. Pork loin should roast for 25 min per pound at 325 F and should be 160 at the thickest point when done. Mine was like 175 in the middle but it was fantastic.
Then spoon over this yummy raisin apple sauce.
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup raisins
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 apple chopped
1 teaspoon cornstarch(or potato starch if you forgot to buy cornstarch, like i did)
1 tablespoons cold water
Boil first 4 ingredients for five min then add apple for another five min and then add cornstarch and water slurry for 1-2 min.
slurry is mix of starch and water
The sauce is great on everything!
We served a really nice Pinot Noir(gift from friend Cole) with dinner and then had a lovely blackberry dessert wine with dessert which was yummy.Matthew and I really like red wine with Pork. White is just too light and pork has so much flavor.
So, for the past two weeks the shop has been fairly calm. Nice and relaxed. So no real crazies to contend with. Basically this is the time during which I get to sit around waiting for customers and listening to the music, if it can be called that. This is when I really start to notice the music and wonder if I would prefer the craziness caused by customers over the craziness caused by listening to Kenny G five times over in a day. Terrible terrible selection at the shop and so last year about this time I brought in some of my music that can slide under the shop appropriate music radar. This was great for the first year, now my three cds that met with approval are starting to wear on me. I realized (the processor came!!! yeah yeah yeah! the poor UPS man had to practically set the dogs on me to keep me from grabbing it from his arm, I tried twice and he shooed me away) that work music can not be personal music. They must be separate. In some situations it would work fine, but not in a place where the only decent music is what I've brought in and I play it over and over again in an attempt to avoid listening to piano musak of popular pop songs and terrible jazz and other such stuff. So now my approach is to just pick the worst of the shop music and play it to watch others suffer as well.
Other shop news. I'm not sure what kind of crazy vibes I'm giving out. I think people can sense certain things about me, such as: I hate wasting bags, I am an overbearing sales person and I love to act as everyone's personal information booth. Okay, only one of the above is correct.
I can't count the number of times people have, before the entire sales transaction is over, asked with some slight rude tones in their voice "can't you put that in a bag?" Usually I say "sure, of course you can have a bag" with notes of surprise in my voice, but occasionally I say "Oh, you want a bag for that? you don't want to walk down the street juggling all of your purchases?" and then I smile to show it's just a funny little joke and they are a complete idiot.
I guess I look like an arm twister, cause most of the time when I greet people who walk into the shop, they say "I'm just browsing" with an attitude that says "I can see it in your eyes, you want to sell me on something and I'm not interested." The thing is, all I ever want to say is "of course you're just browsing, what else is a shop for? That's the whole point of this shop existing is so that you can browse and then suddenly find something you want and buy it."
And I guess as a shop girl I'm supposed to eat at the terrible, overpriced restaurants near by so that I can tell tourists which are the better of a whole mess of evils. Usually I just tell people I don't eat in the area and then recommend some random place. It's very silly.