Dooooooowntoooooooooown… things that are funny

Illicit blogging-while-“working,” eep!

Note: it’s entirely possible that the following things were so utterly amusing to me due to the complete lack of mental stimulation during the four preceding  hours at my desk.

While doing lunch-break errands this afternoon, I saw two things that induced instant giggles.  First, on the way to the post office, two blocks from my office, there was a man on the corner playing his homemade drum set – consisting of the usual buckets and bottles, and also a BIKE RACK!!  The bike rack had apparently been unscrewed from the pavement (a little disconcerting that this is possible), to become a portable component of the drum set.  Imagine something like this:

Plus this:

City of Portland bike rack

City of Portland bike rack

 Any potentially illegal aspects aside, this is one of the more awesome things I have seen downtown.  He was completely rocking out.

Next gigglefest encounter… this sort of bicycle:

 

Ok, not exactly this bicycle... but this is what Google thought I was talking about, which is equally hilarious.

Ok, not exactly this bicycle... but this is what Google thought I was talking about, which is equally hilarious.

With this sticker:

This is funny for many reasons, primarily because it is such a hipster thing to have that bike plus that sticker.  Silly.

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Published in: Uncategorized on January 28, 2009 at 4:16 pm  Leave a Comment  

A Whole Lot of Awesome (AKA sauerkraut)

Today Mahria and I made a new (to us) kind of crock-pot stew.  It’s called “Hunter’s Stew,” and I learned about it from one of the three cookbooks I got for Christmas – A Tale of Twelve Kitchens, by Jake Tilson.  Into the crockpot went:

  • A whole lot of sauerkraut
  • A whole lot of red cabbage
  • A WHOLE lot of buttery, sauteed onions
  • Italian sausages
  • Mushrooms
  • Two chopped apples
  • Ten pitted prunes
  • Chicken stock and red wine

It simmered for about nine hours, and was…. awesome.   We ate the stew with a loaf of beer-walnut bread from the bakery around the corner from my office (which I patronize most days, given the amazingness – aka butter content – of their croissants).  Beyond containing both prunes and sauerkraut and still being delicious, I am fascinated with this stew because it apparently is best about a week after it’s made.  AND, also awesome, you can continually add more ingredients as the days go on – bacon (#1 on my list to toss in the pot), random meat bits, veggies, more sauerkraut, etc etc.  Obviously, this is my new favorite source of nutrients.

And now for a photo montage of some of the more interesting components of my stew (photos courtesy of the Internet):

Sauerkraut!

Red Cabbage!

Red Cabbage!

Mushrooms! Or one really big mushroom!

Mushrooms! Or one really big mushroom!

Italian Sausage!

Italian Sausage!

Prunes!

Prunes!

Apples!

Apples!

Red Wine!

Red Wine!

It has become apparent that the Internet is greatly lacking inspirational photos of both chicken stock and sauteed onions, and has an incredible abundance of prune photography.

Published in: on January 22, 2009 at 9:28 pm  Comments (1)  
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Me Llamo Llama (y te amo)

It’s probably best to start this conversation with a song (please, just click the link, and don’t forget to turn up the volume).

Now that you know all about llamas, I can tell you about my knitting project.  I am knitting the infamous (on the Internet, everybody knows about it) Hemlock Ring blanket.  Adapted from a 1942 vintage lace doily pattern by (the also infamous) Jared Flood / Brooklyntweed, the blanket is made using bulky yarn and larger needles, and has many additional rows of a feather and fan pattern to increase the final size.  Jared’s beautifully photographed blanket here, his add-on chart here.

I’m knitting my blanket using pea-green baby llama yarn.  Awesome.

Hemlock Ring Blanket

Hemlock Ring blanket, knit with Elsebeth Lavold's Peruvian bably llama yarn.

If you plan on joining the massive clan of Hemlock Ring blanket knitters you should know that Row 35 ends with a knit 1, contrary to the written pattern.  I did a lot of pondering over this row, before turning to the Hemlock Ring Knitalong (yep, one word) Yahoo group for clues (the issue was immediately resolved, these people know what’s up).   You should also know that I somehow ended up short a couple stitches on Row 37, or shortly after, which means either my counting got off somewhere (likely), or the pattern for an earlier row is slightly off.  I would like to blame Row 35.  Whatever the cause – which I was unable to discern even after much long division and multiplication combined – I solved the issue by making two stitches in the next row.  It’s lace, a couple more holes shouldn’t matter.

Published in: on January 6, 2009 at 8:45 pm  Comments (3)  
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High-Altitude Baking: a Force to Be Reckoned With

Turns out, cookies in Oregon and cookies in Colorado are not the same cookies.  My new favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe (which in some ways says a lot about the recipe, as my world often revolves – or not – depending on the presence and abundance of chocolate chip cookies, and in other ways says nothing as my previous recipe was off the back of the Tollhouse chocolate chip package) is from a Very Official Study conducted by Le New York Times.

While making the dough on Saturday, I made the executive decision to find out once and for all whether rumors about high-altitude baking are true.  This sentence may also be read: While making the dough on Saturday, I was unfortunately too lazy to figure out the necessary high-altitude recipe modifications.  Hmph.  Either way, the experiment was a huge success!  Every sheet of cookies that came out of the oven last night bore not the doughy, fluffy morsels of delight that usually come out of the oven in Portland, but flattened, mopey, crispy pancake cookies that – while tasting every bit like the butter and sugar of which they are composed – were just not the cookies I had intended.  They will still be consumed with gusto, as they unquestionably embody the form of Chocolate Chip Cookie.

Chocolate chip cookies, as seen at 5,100 feet above sea level.

Chocolate chip cookies, as seen at 5,100 feet above sea level.

Published in: on January 5, 2009 at 9:56 am  Comments (1)  
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Uniekaas Parrano

Parrano is:

An unforgettable cheese with the Italian temperament. It has the alluring, nutty flavor of a fine aged parmesan with the versatility of a young gouda. Sliced, shredded, or melted – Parrano is the cheese that adds a mouth-watering zest to salads, sandwiches, pastas and sauces. –Nederlandse Kaas Unie (the Dutch Cheese Union)

Or you can just eat hunks of it while pretending to put it on fancy crackers.

With this cheese, I now blog.

Statement of Intent: I intend to share my epicurean experiences, my attempts at cooking, a lot of cheese-eating, and other things that promote personal well-being, like baby llama yarn, knitting projects (unless it’s argyle, which actually promotes mutiny), spinning… So, mostly cheese and warm fuzzies.

Therefore hitherto whenceforth,

Tonight I Will Be Making Cookie Dough

and

Knitting a Hemlock Ring Doily Lap Blanket.

End, entrance into blogobananza.

Published in: on January 4, 2009 at 12:10 am  Leave a Comment  
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