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All posts for the month November, 2007

pull my string!

Published November 26, 2007 by lisaolisa

rumsfeld-doll

Comes with 28 phrases. There’re so many to choose from!

I can’t tell you if the use of force in Iraq today would last five days, or five weeks, or five months, but it certainly isn’t going to last any longer than that.

It is pretty clear that the coalition can win in Afghanistan and Iraq in one way or another, but it will be a long, hard slog.

As you know, you go to war with the army you have, not the army you might want or wish to have at a later time.

Freedom’s untidy, and free people are free to make mistakes and commit crimes and do bad things.

I don’t believe anyone that I know in the administration ever said that Iraq had nuclear weapons.

You and a few other critics are the only people I’ve heard use the phrase immediate threat. I didn’t, the president didn’t. And it’s become kind of folklore that that’s what’s happened.

But no terrorist state poses a greater or more immediate threat to the security of our people and the stability of the world than the regime of Saddam Hussein in Iraq.

And there is, I am certain, among the Iraqi people a respect for the care and the precision that went into the bombing campaign.

There will be good moments, and there will be less good moments.

Stuff happens.

It’s a difficult thing today to be informed about our government even without all the secrecy.

I am not going to give you a number for it because it’s not my business to do intelligent work.

I’m not into this detail stuff. I’m more concepty.

Look at me! I’m sweet and lovable!

The absence of evidence is not necessarily the evidence of absence.

Let’s hear it for the essential daily briefing, however hollow and empty it might be.

bring on that holiday cheer

Published November 26, 2007 by lisaolisa

Until just a few minutes ago, I had managed to avoid the most infuriating marketing campaign of all time, that being the Lexus December to Remember year-end event. That cloying sugarplum tinkle that turns into bad Union Square 2 lobby piano jazz. Those annoying gigantic bows. The Talbot and Orvis Stepford couples who emerge from their center hall colonial homes to delight one another with disposable income. (Who’s buying the occasional woman surprising the occasional man? It took them five years to slip that in, but does anyone think they women are driving here?) I hate them. I hate them all. Die, Lexus robots, die!

Lexus robots are second only to the annoying, cloying children that are foisted upon us all with regularity, and during the holidays, without abatement. Children singing, children dancing, children trying to be cute children. To whom does this ploy appeal? Are not parents enchanted with the true wonderment that is their own offspring? Do they, perhaps, subconsciously listen more intently because they’ve trained their brains to be especially attuned to the sound of children, even fake ones manipulated by the black friday marketing machine? WHO LIKES THESE THINGS? They set my teeth on edge, and none more so than the poster child for the master race, the Clara automaton for the Pacific Northwest Ballet. At some point in our lives, we should be opted out from things that incent us not to purchase, but to riot. Big media, you’re not mollifying this mass. Where is my session memory for NWCN Channel 2? I *never* click The Nutcracker!

Nantucket Cranberry Pie (Laurie Colwin’s "More Home Cooking" Harper Perennial 2000)

Published November 20, 2007 by lisaolisa
Serves 6 to 8
 
cranberry_pie
 
For the Filling:
Butter, to grease a pie plate
2 cups chopped cranberries (fresh or frozen)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
 
For the Topping:
2 eggs
3/4 cup butter, melted
1 cup sugar
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon almond extract
 
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Place the cranberries in a buttered, 9- or 10-inch pie plate. Toss the sugar and walnuts, and sprinkle over the berries.
Mix together the eggs, butter, sugar, flour and almond extract until smooth.
Pour the topping over the cranberry mixture and bake for 40 minutes.
 

Cranberry Nasamp

Published November 20, 2007 by lisaolisa
nasamp
This Wampanoag recipe, which makes a warm and soothing breakfast, dates back hundreds of years (with a few nods to modern tastes). This is a version from Darius Coombs and Eleanor Jackson of Plimoth Plantation.
 
Serves 2
 
2 handfuls of corn meal
Water (enough to cover corn meal)
Cranberries (dried, fresh or frozen, as much as you want)
Maple syrup, chopped walnuts or hazelnuts, sunflower seeds (optional)
 
Put the cornmeal in a pot, cover with water and simmer until the porridge is thick and creamy. If you’re using fresh or frozen berries, put them in at the start. If you’re using dried, add them at the end.
 
Add maple syrup, nuts and seeds to taste.

Mashed potatoes

Published November 17, 2007 by lisaolisa

Made these for T-day, and made way too many of them, so the result was iffy. Will make this again in a small batch to see if the texture is better. I personally like the unnaturally uniform texture of overmashed potatoes. The Mister reports you can’t add too much garlic, so I might try quartering the cloves for more kick. 

4 russet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
8 red potatoes, cut into chunks roughly the same size as the russet chunks
1 to 2 teaspoons kosher salt
3/4 cup low fat buttermilk (not skim)
1/4 cup heavy cream
6 to 8 cloves of garlic, peeled

NOTE: Great mashed potatoes hate recipes. Although the above amounts will make a fine mash, you’re better off with these simple formulas. Try to hit a 2 to 1 ratio of russets to reds (by weight), and have at least 1/4 cup of dairy per pound of potatoes. You may not use it all, but it’s good to know it’s there. As for the garlic, use your best judgment.
Combine potatoes in a large pot and just cover with hot tap water. Place over high heat and season water with 1 to 2 teaspoons of salt, (it should taste like sea water). Cover the pot and bring to a boil.

Meanwhile, combine dairy and garlic in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Keep this mixture barely simmering until the potatoes are done.

As soon as the water comes to a boil, remove the lid and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until a potato chunk can easily be crushed with a pair of tongs. Drain, then return potatoes to the pan, return pot to heat and shake for 30 seconds so the surface water can evaporate. Remove pot and set on a towel or hot pads. Pour about half the garlic mixture into the potatoes and mash with an old-fashioned potato masher. Start tasting and looking at the consistency right away. If mashers seem dry or bland, add more of the garlic mixture. Avoid over mashing or you’ll end up with gluey instead of fluffy

Serve straight or garnish with any of the following: parsley, chopped scallions, crumbled bacon, sun dried tomatoes, (If you have the dry ones, make sure you re-hydrate them.) grated horseradish, horseradish sauce, pesto, more bacon, Sauteed mushrooms…use your imagination.

(Alton Brown)

Mashed potatoes

Published November 17, 2007 by lisaolisa

Made these for T-day, and made way too many of them, so the result was iffy. Will make this again in a small batch to see if the texture is better. I personally like the unnaturally uniform texture of overmashed potatoes. The Mister reports you can’t add too much garlic, so I might try quartering the cloves for more kick. 

4 russet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
8 red potatoes, cut into chunks roughly the same size as the russet chunks
1 to 2 teaspoons kosher salt
3/4 cup low fat buttermilk (not skim)
1/4 cup heavy cream
6 to 8 cloves of garlic, peeled

NOTE: Great mashed potatoes hate recipes. Although the above amounts will make a fine mash, you’re better off with these simple formulas. Try to hit a 2 to 1 ratio of russets to reds (by weight), and have at least 1/4 cup of dairy per pound of potatoes. You may not use it all, but it’s good to know it’s there. As for the garlic, use your best judgment.
Combine potatoes in a large pot and just cover with hot tap water. Place over high heat and season water with 1 to 2 teaspoons of salt, (it should taste like sea water). Cover the pot and bring to a boil.

Meanwhile, combine dairy and garlic in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Keep this mixture barely simmering until the potatoes are done.

As soon as the water comes to a boil, remove the lid and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until a potato chunk can easily be crushed with a pair of tongs. Drain, then return potatoes to the pan, return pot to heat and shake for 30 seconds so the surface water can evaporate. Remove pot and set on a towel or hot pads. Pour about half the garlic mixture into the potatoes and mash with an old-fashioned potato masher. Start tasting and looking at the consistency right away. If mashers seem dry or bland, add more of the garlic mixture. Avoid over mashing or you’ll end up with gluey instead of fluffy

Serve straight or garnish with any of the following: parsley, chopped scallions, crumbled bacon, sun dried tomatoes, (If you have the dry ones, make sure you re-hydrate them.) grated horseradish, horseradish sauce, pesto, more bacon, Sauteed mushrooms…use your imagination.

(Alton Brown)