Linky things February 17th through February 22nd

Here is some stuff I have been reading that I thought folks might like:

  • February 22nd - Facing Up To It - "If you want to argue that "whatever" happened in the "war on terror" was necessary because of the magnitude and novelty of the threat, then you had better be willing to face what the "whatever" entailed."
  • February 22nd - Yogurt, Perfected - Oh! Goddess I might need to try this again!
  • February 22nd - Utah Bill Equates Miscarriages With Criminal Homicide- REALLY. - "A bill in the Utah state legislature that has passed both the House and Senate this week now awaits Governor Gary Herbert's signature- and will make it a crime for a woman to have a miscarriage, as well as make induced abortions a crime in some instances. " I think I'll be detouring around Utah from now on.
  • February 22nd - Those Fantastic Incredibles! - I love this movie, very much like the article - but what occurred to me in at the end: How sad is it, that to pass the Bechdel test, which so few movies do, all it took was two lines of dialog.
  • February 22nd - Quick Notes: Weddings, Vodou, and School Holidays - "Pagan Holidays in New Jersey: In a final note, word has been spreading through Pagan e-mail lists that the New Jersey State Board of Education has added the eight Wiccan/Pagan “Wheel of the Year” holidays to its “official” list." How cool is that . . .!
  • February 22nd - What if Bertie Wooster, rather than being a mere layabout, was also Batman? - Just a big pile of awesome!
  • February 18th - Patrick McCollum’s Case Hits the Mainstream - "'During the course of the case, the CDCR, other related defendants, and the Assistant Attorneys General who represents them have argued before the court that Pagans are not deserving of equal civil rights as are provided adherents of the preferred faiths. In one of their first arguments to the court, the defendants said that certain “traditional” faiths are first tier faiths and that those faiths were meant to have equal rights and protections under the United States Constitution, but that all of the other faiths were second tier faiths, and were not meant to have the same equal rights and protections under the United States Constitution as the first tier faiths.'"
  • February 18th - Things I just don’t understand - "Why are these grown-ass men acting all butt hurt because some girls took pictures of themselves for their friends? How on earth is that about the coaches and their feelings? "
  • February 18th - Roger Ebert's Last Words, con't. - "If we think we have physical imperfections, obsessing about them is only destructive. Low self-esteem involves imagining the worst that other people can think about you. That means they're living upstairs in the rent-free room."
  • February 17th - Interpreting Poll Results - What a difference a Word Makes

Cobbler Recipe

For the Sooj concert I made this cobbler, sort of by the seat of my pants, but it was really pretty good and a few people asked me for the recipe - this is as close as I can come, being that I didn't take notes while I did it. Filling: 1 large bag of mixed berries - costco (this is probably at least 3-4 bags from a regular grocery store) 1-2 tsp vanilla Brown sugar 1t to 1T of Lemon Juice (to taste to brighten flavor) 1T+ Corn starch 2 tsp Cinnamon dash Nutmeg Topping: 1 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar 6 tablespoons flour 2 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon 3/4 cup butter, melted 3 cups oats, uncooked
  1. Defrost bag of fruit in a large bowl, Drain off all of the fruit juice from the frozen berries into a small saucepan
  2. Wisk in 1 T of corn starch and add brown sugar to taste (a few tablespoons) and bring to simmer to thicken. Add more Corn starch if necessary, it should be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
  3. Add vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice and the thickened fruit juice back to the fruit - lightly mix to coat fruit.
  4. Move fruit and juice mixture into 9x13 casserole dish
  5. In a bowl mix together all of the topping ingredients until it has a crumbly texture.
  6. Spread the crumble topping over the top of the fruit in the casserole dish.
  7. Bake at 350 for 35-45 minutes till topping is golden brown and the fruit is bubbly.
  8. Serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

Crunchy Barley Salad – the remix

The Original Recipe: My comments/edits in red

Crunchy Barley Salad

Recipe By : Jane Brody - Good Food Book
Serving Size : 4 Preparation Time :2:00
Categories : Salads Rice & Grains

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
1 2/3 cups chicken broth Use Veggie broth for a vegetarian salad, or water if you don't have broth.
1 1/3 cups water
1 cup barley Can use Israeli couscous
1 cup green pepper -- diced
1 cup carrot -- thinly sliced or buy grated ones at the store
1/2 cup red onion -- diced
1/2 cup radishes -- thinly sliced skip entirely - yuck!!!
1/4 cup fresh dill seriously just a 1/4C?? Add more to taste
1/4 cup fresh parsley
DRESSING make more double or triple these quantities at least
1 large garlic clove -- peeled & crushed or mince - see instructions below
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar

In a heavy, medium saucepan, bring the broth and water to a boil. Add the
barley. When the boiling resumes, reduce the heat to low, cover the pan, and
simmer the barley for 40 to 45 minutes or until it is tender (check after
about 30 minutes, and add more water if the barley is dry).

If doing couscous follow instructions on package, but you can use water or broth.

While the barley cooks, in a large bowl whisk together the dressing
ingredients. I like using a stick blender.

When the barley is done, remove the garlic (screw that - I leave the garlic in - more garlic good!) from the dressing, and add the
barley to the dressing while the barley is still hot. Toss the ingredients to
mix them well. Cover the mixture, and refrigerate it for about 1 hour or

Before serving, add the green pepper, carrot, onion, radishes, dill and
parsley. Toss the salad well.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

NOTES : This can be served chilled, or eaten warm. If warm, mix the
vegetables while the grain is still warm and serve immediately.

Tiramisu –

This is a desert that I've made more than once
  • 9 egg yolks (extra large or jumbo)
  • 1-3/4 C white sugar
  • 2 C  mascarpone cheese
  • 2-3/4 C  heavy whipping cream
  • 1 17oz package of Ladyfingers (the dry crunchy style)
  • 1- 1/2 C Brewed strong coffee
  • 1/2 cup Kahlua (add more or less to taste)
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1 Teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder, for dusting
If you can whip cream in your home you probably have everything, both tools and skills, to make this. It technically calls for a double-boiler but i just use a metal bowl that will sit comfortably inside one of my medium size soup pots. I fill the pot with enough water so that when the bowl sits in the pot it covers the bottom of the bowl by about 2 inches.  I build this like a trifle in a glass bowl with straight sides. You will need at least one other wide flat bowl where you will dip the ladyfingers in the coffee & kahlua mixture.
  1. Combine sugar and egg yolks in the top of a double boiler, over boiling water. It will start out being kind of dry and granular.
  2. Turn down the heat to low, and stir mixture over heat for 10 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and whip mixture until it is thick and lemon colored.
  4. Add mascarpone to whipped yolks. Mix until combined.  Set aside to cool a bit.
  5. In a separate bowl, whip cream to stiff peaks.
  6. Gently fold into yolk and cheese mixture and set aside. The folding is key - you don't want this to go flat.
  7. Mix the coffee, Kahlua and vanilla in a wide flat bowl.
  8. Roll a ladyfinger in the coffee and then place in the bottom of the bowl where you will build the tiramisu.  Repeat, laying the ladyfingers next to eachother until the bottom of the tiramisu bowl is mostly covered.
  9. Smooth 1/3 of the cream filling over the ladyfingers. Sprinkle cocoa powder over the cream filling.
  10. Repeat steps 8 and 9 until bowl is full.
  11. Put an extra thick layer of cocoa on the top.
I sometimes decorate with chocolate curls or if i have extra egg and cream mixture I'll put it in a pastry tube an pipe it on top.  Sometimes I mix up a small amount of ganache and drizzle it on top.  Some day I'll post my WAY easier method of making ganache.

Easy Peasy Summer Food

So even though we are floating through the worst summer storm in a summer with a LOT of rain, Evan and I had to go to grocery store. And there behind the fish counter was salmon.  You may or may not know my *slight* salmon obsession.  Until recently I was afraid to cook it myself, because I am picky as hell and didn't want to ruin it.  But then for mother's day I learned how to poach it. Today I tried poaching on a small scale for the first time. YUM! and almost instant dinner. So here was my impromptu recipe for poached salmon. 1/2 box of veggie or chicken broth Water or white wine Spices: Salt, Pepper, Dill, celery seed, garlic Salmon Filet Put the broth and water and or wine in a shallow skillet that has a close fitting lid.  Make sure the liquid level in the pan is a little higher than the height of your salmon filet.  Add the spices to taste. Add the filet to the pan, and place the lid.  Heat the pan till the water is just simmering.  Then turn on your timer. It won't take long to cook and it will depend on the thickness and size of your filet.  I suggest checking every 3 to 5 minutes, it probably won't take more than 10 minutes. Sauce 1/4 C of plain yogurt or sour cream 1 T Mayonaisse 1t-T of lemon juice Spices: horseradish, dill weed, pepper, onion powder Mix to taste. EAT!!!