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Jun. 22nd, 2017 07:47 pm
nestra: (pushing daisies)
[personal profile] nestra
I just rewatched "Four Weddings and a Funeral" on a plane. (Except for the Auden part, because I did not wish to cry on a plane.) I had thoughts.
  1. Boy, this was just peak Hugh Grant.
  2. They're lucky they had Hugh Grant, because the character's actually a pretty terrible person.
  3. Andie Macdowell. Yeeeeah.
  4. I started out mentally substituting Amy Adams for her. Then I decided to substitute Haley Atwell, even though it made no sense, with the character being American. Then I decided to substitute no one, because she is also an awful character.
  5. The movie really shows its age with the Simon Callow/John Hannah relationship. No one ever says the word "gay", they never kiss, and John Hannah is introduced at the funeral as "his closest friend."
  6. I almost wish for Kirsten Scott Thomas' character to end up with Hugh Grant, except not, because as noted above, terrible.

BAKE!!

Jun. 20th, 2017 01:28 pm
askye: (Default)
[personal profile] askye
So I've started baking. Well I have been for a few months. I've wanted to try but I thought it would be.. hard. That it would end in lots of inedible things .

Except it hasn't. I've taken it slow and done easy stuff and it's mostly turned out. Except pizza dough. And my attempt at Irish Soda Bread, but I think I miscounted the cups of flour I was adding and put it too much.

I've made white bread (2 different recipes), dinner rolls, egg custard pie, brownies, different batches of cookies, German Chocolate Cake, strawberry bread, buttermilk and plain biscuits, and white cake.

The white cake I made because we had strawberries and cream and nothing to go with them..so I made a small batch of cake and baked in in mini loaf pan thing.

Biscuits were ok. the buttermilk biscuits I seriously overworked the dough. And since you can't get just a small amount of buttermilk I'm going to pass on doing that again for awhile.

I don't know what I'm doing wrong with the pizza dough.

Mostly I'm drawn to bread baking and yeast based things but also I don't have a huge urge to eat what I make. Well, I do but then sometimes I'm ready to be done with whatever and make something new.

The pie crust was easier to make than the pizza dough and turned out much better. Don't think I'll ever ben at Great British Bake Off level but I'm not sure I want to get there. I just want to enjoy it and try new things and find people to eat everything so I can make new things.

linkspam on a hot Sunday

Jun. 18th, 2017 05:40 pm
cofax7: D'Argo: there is always time for beer (FS - Beer Time - Saava)
[personal profile] cofax7
Courtesy of MetaFilter: some brilliant G&S political filk.

I really enjoyed this set of post-series Harry Potter snippets.

Gotta love Rebecca Solnit.

This site has a great detailed overview of the Trump-Russia scandal.

Oh, this is hella cute.

This story about refugees in Dallas gave me some hope.

This story took some of that hope away. :-(

This article discusses how the federal flood insurance program cannot withstand global sea level rise.

This Outside Magazine article about pre-existing conditions has politics showing up in usual circumstances.

Sophie Gilbert on toxic masculinity, in The Atlantic.

The more studies I read, the more I learn that no single food or diet affects everyone the same way. It's fascinating.

Holy crap this is fantastic. In 2013, Ward and a colleague bought an old lobster boat and anchored it in the path of a 40,000-ton coal freighter at Brayton Point in Massachusetts. The state brought charges, and on the day of the trial-with climate scientist Dr. James Hansen and activist Bill McKibben standing ready to testify-Bristol County district attorney Sam Sutter stunned the court by dropping the charges and announcing that the protesters were right. Standing in front of the courthouse, waving an essay by McKibben, DA Sutter called climate change one of the gravest crises our planet has ever faced and declared that the political leadership was failing the people. He then joined Ward in a climate march in New York, in Central Park. From this article about the folks who closed the valves on the DAPL.

*

In other news, I reached the end of Marie Brennan's Lady Trent novels this week. In the Sanctuary of Wings was very enjoyable, and my only complaint is that the series is over. :-(

*

In other news, it's the hottest day of the year, but I had a head of home-grown garlic from my brother's MIL, so I had to use it to make roasted garlic bread. Roasted garlic bread )

Baths of days past

Jun. 15th, 2017 05:59 pm
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
[personal profile] mme_hardy
I'm reading about the Summerland fire disaster (a resort on the Isle of Man burned down, killing 50) and I got to the list of special baths offered.

At street level, there was the remedial entrance for persons using the aerotone, sauna, steam, hot, cold plunge, slipper, Vichy douche, massage, Russian vapour and Turkish baths. Some facilities on this level, such as an aerotone bath, did not appear in the original plans and were added during construction because they had proved to be profitable additions to swimming baths in mainland Britain.

Aerotone baths (do watch the video!) were a sort of early Jacuzzi with bubbles and a cold rinse at the end.  As far as I can tell, a slipper bath is a plain ol' bathtub with one sloped side for reclining.   A Vichy douche was, at Vichy, a four-hand massage under a hot shower of Vichy water.  At Summerland, it was presumably just a massage under a hot shower, which still sounds swell to me.  I do not know the difference between a sauna, a Russian vapour bath, and a Turkish bath. 

Sandwiches Have Gone Modern

Jun. 15th, 2017 05:15 pm
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
[personal profile] mme_hardy
From Woman's World, August, 1936 p. 24, but this time not nasty. 


To begin at the beginning, here are two quick sandwich breads -Chocolate Bread which you will find perfectly grand for cream cheese or marmalade sandwiches, and Date-Nut-Orange Bread.

Chocolate Bread
3 cups sifted cake flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 3/4 teaspoons salt
1 egg
1/4 cup melted butter or shortening
1 1/4 cups milk
2 squares (ounces) unsweetened chocolate, melted

Sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Add sugar and when thoroughly blended moisten with the beaten egg. shortening and milk,. adding these gradually and mixing well. Finally add the chocolate and when well blended turn into a greased loaf-pan and bake in a moderate oven-350 degrees F.--about one and a quarter hours.

Date-Nut-Orange Bread

2 cups white flour
1 teaspoon soda [baking soda, I assume, not washing]
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 cups graham flour
3/4 cup sugar
2/3 cup chopped nut-meats
2/3 cup pitted dates, cut small
Grated rind 1 orange
2 cups sour milk
1/2 cup molasses

Sift together the white hour. soda, salt and baking powder. Add the graham flour, sugar, nut-meats,
dates and orange rind and moisten with the blended sour milk and molasses. Turn into one large well greased bread pan and bake in a moderate oven-350 degrees F.-about one and a quarter hours.

...
Another variety of the rolled sandwich is the one where buttered fresh bread is rolled around a spray of watercress. a short stalk of celery (plain or stuffed) or a tip of cooked asparagus, any of these being first dipped into French dressing for greater flavor.
[I've seen recipes where the asparagus was dipped in hollandaise. Mm.]

...
Afternoon Tea Sandwiches

Cucumber: White bread with filling of finely minced well drained cucumber seasoned with onion juice, lemon juice and minced parsley.

Rolled Mint: Cream butter for sandwiches then work into it very finely minced mint-1 teaspoon to 2/3 cup butter.

Peach Cream: Spread white, graham or whole wheat bread first with softened butter then with cream cheese., next with peach (or apricot) marmalade. Nuts if you like but they are good enough without. Serve either as open or closed sandwiches.

Tropical: Use white bread, spread with creamed butter then with currant jelly into which shredded coconut, plain or toasted, has been beaten with a fork. Top with thinly sliced bananas sprinkled with lemon juice. Serve either open or closed.

Date Nut: Thin slices of pound cake or sponge cake with filling of chopped dates and nuts (in equal proportions) moistened with orange juice.

Campfire Sandwiches

Split, toast and butter round sandwich rolls. Fill with piping hot slices of sautéed canned corned beef hash, top with a little prepared horseradish, mustard or mustard pickle. Serve dill pickles on the side.

Roquefort-Ham for the Slag Party*

Combine finely minced ham with one-fourth its bulk each of mashed roquefort cheese and chopped sweet pickles. Moisten with French dressing or mayonnaise. Use buttered whole wheat or rye bread or pumpernickel, topping the filling, if desired, with thinly sliced, well chilled, seasoned fresh tomatoes.

Century Club

Use three slices buttered toast for each sandwich. Arrange on the first, lettuce, crisp bacon and sliced tomato moistened with French dressing or mayonnaise. Cover with second slice of toast, placing on this lettuce, cold tongue and minced mustard pickle. Top with remaining toast slice, cut through to form two triangles and garnish with pickle fans.

* okay, it's really Stag Party, but I prefer the OCR version. 

Magic Mayonnaise

Jun. 14th, 2017 04:11 pm
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
[personal profile] mme_hardy
 From Woman's World, June, 1934, p. 13.
Magic Mayonnaise
1/4 cup vinegar
1/4 cup oil
2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
Few grains cayenne

Place ingredients in a pint jar in order given. Fasten top of jar tightly and shake vigorously for one or two minutes. If a heavier consistency is desired place jar in refrigerator to chill before using.

There is worse to come.
Mineral Oil Dressing

2 egg yolks
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 1/4 cups mineral oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper or paprika

Beat egg yolks until thick gradually adding lemon juice, then blend in oil carefully -- as dressing thickens, oil may be added more quickly. Season and chill before using.

This dressing is particularly desirable for laxative diets, also for reducing diets as the mineral oil has no nutritional value.

Spicy Dressing

Jun. 12th, 2017 06:05 pm
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
[personal profile] mme_hardy
 From  Woman's World, August, 1937.

4 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon flour
1 cup milk
2 eggs
2 tablespoons glycerine
1 teaspoon salt
Dash of cayenne
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon dry mustard 
1/2 cup vinegar.

Combine butter and flour in double boiler, add milk gradually and cook, stirring constantly, as for white sauce.  Beat egg yolks and glycerine slightly, then add remaining ingredients, stir into first mixture, and continue cooking until thick and smooth.   Remove from fire and pour slowly over stiffly beaten egg whites, beating while pouring.  When cold cover and keep in refrigerator.

This is for making a mixed vegetable salad, or for "moistening" chopped raw vegetables for use as a sandwich spread.  It probably wasn't as dreadful as I think it sounds, but, Lord, it doesn't sound good.

e:  Five or six pages later:  "Surprise the family with delicious Grape-Nuts mousse".  I'll say.  It's an Italian meringue with cream, grape nuts, and vanilla beaten in, then frozen.

Oog, anxiety is hard

Jun. 11th, 2017 01:25 pm
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
[personal profile] mme_hardy
A couple of months ago I built two Ikea bookshelves to put behind my husband's and my comfy chairs, so that we could get temporary control over the stacks of books on the floor.  After putting the shelves together, I didn't have the energy to clear a space to move them into.  They've stood just behind the chairs at the kitchen table for those two months.

Today we bravely moved one of the bookshelves into place, which required .... coping with the stacks of books on the floor.  Which stacks included magazines (do I want that copy of Threads?  Should I save it out of the recycling in case another GBACG member wants it?  ARGH DECISIONS) and random things that had gotten trapped amongst the stacks.  (Hey, THAT's what happened to that backup phone power cell.)

I am physically shaking.  But one bag of garbage and a respectable chunk of recycling are going OUT of the house, one bookshelf is in place and has shelves up so that I can put things away, and I can get to the kitchen table without eeling around a bookshelf.

I'm still shaking, though.

e: I installed Onepass before all this started and began the agonizing task of moving all my passwords from Chrome to 1pass, upping their security along the way.  I was a proper good geek and rolled physical dice to generate a passphrase from www.diceware.com.   Along the way, I changed my uncrackable but completely unrememberable Google password to a passphrase.  So that was another thing.
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
[personal profile] mme_hardy
The (sadly) typical historical food blog runs something like "Here's a picture and transcription of an authentic recipe.  Now here's my version, which substitutes baking powder for hartshorn, cinnamon for grains of paradise, and halves the sugar to suit modern tastes!"

Ivan Day is not that blogger.  He uses period techniques, ingredients, and tools to reproduce the historical recipes as accurately is possible.  One of his specialties is perfect reproductions of the elaborate set pieces of sugar, dough, and jelly that were part of upper-class European cuisine from the medieval period forward.
Enjoy!  I have ordered his Cooking in Europe:1650-1850 and am eagerly anticipating it.

Edit: DO take the time to watch the video of a flummery in motion.

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