Life's too short to eat bad food - Me

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic - Arthur C. Clarke

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

L'shana Tovah Everyone

Happy New Year, ya'all, and welcome to the year 5769.

Part of the tradition of Rosh Hashanna is to eat things that are sweet, in order to ensure a sweet year. One of my favorites of the season is Challah. It's basically a brioche without the butter, for obvious reasons.

What you see is the sponge, the dough ready to rest, and the finished loaves. You may notice that it is not baked in the traditional braided form.
For the High Holy Days it is baked in a spiral.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Bills 31, Rams 14

After a first half of sloppy, penalty plagued play, the Bills scored 25 unanswered points against the winless Rams. And the player of the game was on the losing team.

It was a late game, and dinner was leftover lamb roast in pitas with feta and the trimmings. biggrin

Shameless Exploitation in Pursuit of the Common Good - Paul Newman 1925 - 2008

Know him best as Hud? Hondo? Butch? Harry? Fast Eddie? Basil? Ari? Harper? Reg? Or Cool Hand Luke? He was Actor, Husband, Race Car Driver, Father, Political Activist, and somebody who enjoyed cooking. So much so that he parlayed it into a multi-million business whose after tax revenues are distributed to charities. Not bad for a guy who tuned me off hard-boiled eggs far a few years . . .

The Failure to Communicate is permanent now, rest well Mr. Newman.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Bills 24, Raiders 23

Oh, what a win on the last play does to one's appetite - not! neutral

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Measure the corn of others with your own bushel

Ezra Klein of the American Prospect has a succinct analysis of High Fructose Corn Syrup and how it affects us. Money quote:

That's the primary way the syrup contributes to obesity: Not by being more fattening, but by being so heavily subsidized that it makes it far cheaper to sustain yourself on sweetened carbohydrates than on nutritious food.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Bills 20, Jaguars 16

In scorching heat and humidity the Bills go 2-0 for the first time in five years. I celebrated with leftover pizza and Saranac Pale Ale.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Bills 34, Seahawks 10

Just when I am getting used to not having season tickets and spending all week prepping food for the tailgate party the 2008 Bills put on a barn burner yesterday that I would have enjoyed. But I probably would have been in the bathroom for the fake field goal. wink

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Another Lovely Brunch

A few weeks ago we had another rare Sunday without kids. We had made fajitas earlier in the week, and had leftover frijoles refritos (I tend to keep mine chunky, as opposed to a puree). So Trish suggested Huevos Rancheros, sounded fine by me, but after that recent visit to San Antonio I wanted real Salsa Ranchero. The recipe that has always worked for me is a variant of one appearing in Matt Martinez's Culinary Frontier, which threw me at first because it inclusion of celery, but it really works well.

Two other random factors combined to make this salsa work. The first is that my friend Andrew Galarneau of the Buffalo News and blogmeister of Buffalo Buffet. dropped off some dried chillis for me to share, including Ancho, Gaujillo, de Arbol and Cascabels. Lightly toasted and shredded they would make a a great addition, and one of each would give a balanced heat.

The other factor is that I think I have finally nailed down what I want from an all purpose mexican seasoning blend. I already have my dry BBQ rub, a Cajun seasoning I call Mab!, and a southwest sesoning blend. Penzey's Bangkok Blend is just too good to try to imitate, so southeast Asia is taken care of. But, while I am not giving upon Mole's and other wonderful mexican sauces, I wan't something I can sprinkle on a flank steak or some ground beef that says Mexico rather than New Mexico. I think I have it:

Mexican Spice Blend:

3 Tbl. Ancho Chilli Powder
1 Tsp. Chipotle Chilli Powder of Smoked Paprika
1 Tsp. Ground Black Pepper
1.5 Tsp. Mexican Oregano, Crumbled
1 Tsp. Granulated Garlic
1 Tsp. Granulated Onion
2 Tsp. Dark Brown Sugar
1/2 Tsp. Granulated Sugar
2 Tsp. Cumin, Toasted and Ground
2 Tsp. Coriander, Toasted and Ground
1 Tsp. Cocao Powder
1 Tsp. Ground Cinnamon

As for the Ranchero Salsa,

Toast 1 Ancho, 1 Gaujillo, 1 de Arbol and 1 Cascabel chilli (or a combination to your taste) in a cast iron skillet.

Heat two Tbl. of neutral oil in a heavy saucepot or skillet and saute:

1 Cup of finely chopped white onion
1/2 Cup of finely chopped celery
And the chillies, shedded by hand
for 2 to three minutes.

add a Tbl. or so of the spice blend, 1 Tbl. Cornstarch, a 14.5 ounce can of whole tomatoes and two cups of chichen or beef broth.

Simmer for about 1/2 hour and combine in a blender in batches.


Don't worry Andrew, I have a pint in the freezer with your name on it! wink

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
- Arthur C. Clarke

Life's too short to eat bad food -