Rainbow cake?

Baking adventure day!

I found a recipe here: http://taste-for-adventure.tablespoon.com/2011/03/10/rainbow-cheesecake/

That I had to try, unfortunately, I couldn’t find a baking dish that would allow a water bath, but, aside from cracking on the top, I think it turned out rather nicely.

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Pencils, projects, blogs, wait, that wasn’t another ‘p’

My alliteration has failed me. What would you call a blog with the letter P? Ponderings in Pixels?

Ohh..I may use that.

Anyway, I received these today from my gramma:

and I hadn’t used them before, but they seemed familiar, so I did a quick search.

http://boingboing.net/2010/08/27/first-impression-of.html

So if you’re curious about the pencils, there’s a little review.

I am usually partial to the mechanical pencil for my drafting and sketching, although sometimes I use a soft, thick woodless pencil…but I’m always open to trying new or different pencils to expand my sketching options. I can’t remember the brand of woodless pencils I use, ugh. I want to say koh-i-noor, but it could just as easily be faber castell.

For the non-arty types, you probably think a pencil is a pencil, why all the fuss?

To an extent, yes, it doesn’t matter too much what your tools are for sketches, but, it can be the difference between riding a unicycle and a bicycle sometimes. You CAN get from place to place on a unicycle, but it requires more focus and skill to get the same result, with a nicer pencil it can be extra smooth and making it easier can enhance your idea process.

Of course, getting back to my surprise present…I don’t know why my gramma sent them, there’s no holiday or birthday I’m aware of, though I’m thoroughly pleased. =)

Spear the Asparagus, wait, spare the aspear, that isn’t right

Post #3 on poaching purple peppers

Baked asparagus

This works best if you get very thin asparagus

  • 1 bunch asparagus (or however much you want to make)
  • 3 tbsp (roughly) olive oil (the higher quality the olive oil, the better this is)
  • 1/2 tsp salt (I’m guessing it’s that much, I use a few pinches to sprinkle from top to bottom)
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp various spices (I recommend the italian blend grinder from mccormick, but you can put some basil, thyme, rosemary, garlic and maybe oregano)

Clean the asparagus, snap the ends off, it breaks where it breaks, and that’s the best place for it to break, you don’t want rubbery or tough bits.

Drizzle and coat with olive oil, then sprinkle on your seasonings. You can also add balsamic vinegar or lemon juice if you like, but I like it as is.

Bake at 365F for 30 minutes, or until tender.

Enjoy!

Red, White and Bleu..and green and black..and..

Post #2 on poaching purple peppers

Slight variation on the patriotic potato salad:

  • About 2 lbs of small potatos (these can be red, yellow or white)
  • A handful of plum or grape tomatos
  • 1 1/2 c. sour cream (full or non-fat, whatever you like, this also works with greek yogurt)
  • 2 turkey hot dogs or 1/2 c. bacon bits/pieces (bacon is tastier, hot dogs are healthier)
  • 1/4 c. chopped chives (you can add or substitute green onions, but chives are lovely)
  • 1 can olives (if you can find lyndsey’s naturals they’re best, but black olives are fine)
  • 1/3 c. crumbled bleu cheese
  • 1/4 c. onion if desired (I don’t bother)

Cut potatos into pieces smaller than 2″ square, cut off any black bits and boil the until they are soft, this should be about half an hour once the water is boiling.

Drain, let potatos cool a bit before dicing further.

Mix in olives, bleu cheese, chives, tomatos and hot dog or bacon. Then fold in sour cream until thoroughly mixed.

Don’t poach the purple peppers…

I was asked recently for some of my recipes, so I thought I would post a few here for the culinary curious minds. Post #1:

Chicken Matzohball Soup

1 onion
1 bunch celery
1 normal sized bag of regular carrots (or 2 16 oz bags baby carrots if you really don’t want to peel them)
Parsley (you’re only going to use half a bunch, so think of another use for the rest of it)
Chicken (6 thighs is usually good, yes, you need the skins)
1 tbsp salt (more or less depending on how salty you like it, I opt for slightly less myself)
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp garlic powder (or, two cloves garlic, chopped, fresh is recommended, and there’s another optional thing to do with it**)
Several dashes basil
Several (but fewer) dashes oregano
8 cups water
4 cups chicken broth (although you can just do 12 cups water, it’s nicer to start with chicken broth)
Two “sleeves” of saltines (you can use matzoh..but it’s a bit easier to use saltines, 1 box matzoh should do it otherwise)
4-5 eggs (4 should do it, but if it isn’t sticking together when you’ve mixed it, )

*Start heating the water/chicken broth in large pot on medium.

*Chop celery leaves off, throw them in
*Trim brown bits and ends off celery, put clean stalks in.
*Remove all stems from parsley, chop up leaves and cast them into the water.
*Remove outer layers of onion, chop off roots and put in whole. (Unless you loooove onion, which I do not. If you do, chop up onion)
*Peel and cut up carrots into 2-3″ lengths, put ’em in (or the baby carrots.)
*Clean chicken, remove skins and set aside, bones can be left in for now, toss in soup!
*Start dashing in seasons and mixing–chop up garlic if using fresh

–you need a large bowl for the next bit–
Get a frying pan start frying the chicken skins, they should be crispy when done, set aside
**you may also chop up some garlic and add it to the chicken skin frying process

*In a large bowl, crush saltines (or matzoh) into a sandy consistency (I like mine a little lumpy still)
*Beat up 4 eggs , make sure to insult them thoroughly, mix them into the saltines/matzoh
*add 1 tsp salt
*add 3 tbsp of the simmering chicken broth/soup
*add a little of the schmaltz from the frying pan (chicken fat)
*(keeping the skins for this is optional, but you do need some of the chicken fat, do what you like with the skins otherwise) Break chicken skins into small pieces (you probably won’t use all of these) don’t use chewy bits, just crunchy and place some pieces of them and some of the garlic pieces into a lump of the matzoh/saltine mixture as you roll it into a ball –this should make 12-14 matzoh balls, they only need to be a little under 2″ in diameter

Put matzohballs on plate and let sit in fridge for 30 minutes. At this point the soup should have been simmering for about 30 minutes, in another 20 minutes the chicken should be thoroughly cooked, check–when it IS…remove chicken from soup, de-bone and set aside in a bowl.

*Remove onion and throw away (unless you love onion, then leave it in)
*Remove all large pieces of celery, chop one or two to put back in later.
*The matzohballs should have been sitting in the cold for 30 minutes at this point, so put them in the soup, raise temperature to a boil, and cover.
Check every 15 minutes or so, and turn over matzohballs, they should be thoroughly cooked in about 30 minutes, but cut one open and check, if the inside is chewy-looking, or a different color in the middle, they’re not done.

When matzohballs are done, put chopped celery and chicken back in the soup, simmer for another 10 minutes and viola! Yummy super soup! 

The FDR X-wing

A new painting! I’m not done yet obviously, but I’m curious if you guys think this is awesome…or offensive. This came from the idea of FDR in a fighter plane, and no one could figure out how he’d do that in a wheelchair, so then the idea was “It’s like R2D2! He’s lowered in with a crane and has hand controls.”

So…thoughts?

Clean and Organize

Ohh lookit that pile of stuff.

My newest project sadly is just organizing things. Although I DO have a project in the works that I may finish in-between cleaning and other things like..uh..work! Lots of working and moving heavy crap.

Luckily a lot of this is books, but, there’s also a lot of stuff I have to find accessible places for.

Also, hey, a big stack of my art books! I wonder if any have blank space still…most are full, I know that.

I’m slightly overwhelmed, but hey, it’s a lot more accessible than it used to be.

Any tips on organizing in this space? I’m thinking I’m going to get a small drawer bin for one of the empty nooks I have.

I also have this cool bowl of steel balls…I don’t have a lot of use for it, but I really like it still.