Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Yet More Adventures in Cookery

This time round we tried an onion tart. The recipe book rhapsodized about how nice and sweet white onions are compared to the normal kind. I'm not sure I've ever seen them as a distinct foodstuff in NZ supermarkets, and Wikipedia wasn't very informative, so we used shallots instead. 700 grams of them. (Took a while to peel and chop.)

The result was very oniony, but OK with cheese on top. Overall feeling is that it was OK, but I'm not going to rush to make it again.

I am very pleased with the performance of my kitchen knives after getting them professionally sharpened. Nice Sharpener Guy does dressmaking shears as well. Yay!

The True Tao of the Cheddar Monk

is not the Tao that can be spoken. So you have to blog about it instead.

In other words, I'm taking part in a web competition called the Cheddar Monk Academy which is honouring the second anniversary of the Darths and Droids webcomic. I'll be narrating my quest for spiritual enlightenment, nifty outfits, and free cheese over here.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

More Adventures in Cookery

This time, we tried a Thai stir fry, although with some omissions and substitutions (no baby corn or tamarind paste because we couldn't find any, and no bird's eye chilli because we don't like it.) It was nice, but very very hot. Can the members of the audience who actually know how to cook give me some advice? The recipe said to take 7cm of ginger, grated and squeezed, "and the resulting liquid reserved." Does that mean to just put the liquid in? Or just put the ginger in? Or do both? I'm wondering if that was the cause of the very intense flavour...

Evidence Based Decision Making

There's a dating website called OKCupid that, among other things, has had a lot of interest among my social group for its personality quizzes. You know, what's your dating personality, how would you survive in a zombie apocalypse, that kind of thing. They've also realised that they're sitting on an enormous pile of data of people talking about themselves and communicating with each other, and have started publishing statistical analyses. Some of them are pretty funny, others are practical, and still others head into the territory of a bit disturbing. (My gender and ethnicity is apparently one of the most stand-offish when it comes to replying to first messages from people on the site. Er, sorry?) Even with (or because of?) a self-selection bias out the wazoo, these articles are really interesting if you like thinking about what makes people tick.

Friday, October 09, 2009

Carpet Offcuts

Does anyone want some? I've just rehabilitated Macca's scratching post, courtesy of a kind gentleman at Christie Flooring Ltd who gave me some free offcuts, and now I have a superfluity of same. Free to a good home.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Larping News

So, things have been happening in the Larping world.

1. Chimera was awesome. I should probably have written a review at the time, but no matter, I highly recommend it. People who are interested in what it was like, might profitably check out 20/20 this Thursday.

2. Larpers in Wellington are getting organised, which is all good. There's still some paperwork stuff to do, but hopefully that will be cleared out of the way in good order and leave more time to make kit, organise games, go down the pub with agreeable company, and generally have fun pretending to be someone else.

3. As part of this, I'm running a game about a 5-year old's birthday party, But Nobody Loses An Eye! on Sunday, 18 October. I ran this up at Chimera, and it was quite well received, and I hope to see what Wellingtonians will do with it. There are still spaces left, so get in touch for some crazy silly fun.

4. I finally decided what game I want to run at Kapcon this year, The Book Club. It's going to be on the weird/eccentric side, and I'm worried that a) noone will turn up, and b) lots of people will turn up with high expectations and it turns out to be crap. This is pretty normal for me and running games.

Love to all,


Adventures in Cookery

I've been trying to broaden my palette of vegetarian recipes, partly because dairy farming is, as is becoming increasingly apparent, quite environmentally intensive, but also because there's a heap of interesting food that I'm missing out on, especially as most of my officially vegetarian range of meals usually relies heavily on eggs/dairy. Also, I have several friends with lactose or gluten intolerances, so going vegan makes it a bit easier to serve them nice meals.

Anyway, tonight was an experiment into the arcane ways of the Cranks Fast Food recipe book. This has tasty recipes and swears blind that everything can be served up in 30 minutes or less (as far as tonight goes, ha bloody ha, but I digress) which limits the complexity. (Incidentally, I really like the spanakopita and potato rosti recipes it has.) Tonight's try out was Moroccan Potato Pastelles, which involves making a mashed potato and egg mixture, a separate filling with mushrooms, spring onion, egg etc and then wrapping the potato around the filling and frying. (Not yet up to vegan, but at least less milk.)

Everything was going fine until the wrapping the potato around the filling which turned into such a hideously mushy collapsing exercise that I ended up tipping the filling in and mixing it all together. It was pleasant, but the pastelle that survived my clumsiness and was made as directed was jolly nice - a lesson to me to try harder. If anyone reading this is of Moroccan ethnicity, I apologise sincerely for messing up your cultural foodstuffs, but I'm glad I had a go, because it tasted nice.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

On pot plants

In the front garden of the property where I live, there's normally a pot of daisies, which I put there. Sometime in the last week, it got stolen. Not the daisies, just the pot - whoever it was took the plant out and left it tucked in by a bush with the roots left to fry in the sun, in a glorious display of thievery, pettiness, and anti-environmentalism. We have horrible neighbours downstairs, and I'm guessing that they or one of their friends probably had something to do with it. Their tenancy runs out in a week and a half! Oh boy!