Palm Court

Jul. 30th, 2017 12:45 am
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Harney, "Keemun, Assam, Ceylon & Formosa Oolong"

What that means is a milder Irish breakfast with Chinese tea flavors, like mixing Prince of Wales with English Breakfast.

It's fine. 7/10.

I have been drinking through Tetley British Blend to use it up. Such *weak* tea compared to PG Tips.

Science Tea

Jun. 4th, 2017 05:25 am
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By which I mean: gram scale, ounces cup, measure-measure-measure.

I finished the "Supreme Breakfast" which turned out to be brewed over-time over-water and just ended up sugar-water. Alas, that was the last 2 tsp. Oh well. EMPTY CAN YAY.

I put the rest of the Harney cans in the pantry; the carton is now empty. EMPTY CARTON YAY.

Apparently that was an Assam/Keemun blend. Missed it. Whoops.

https://www.harney.com/products/supreme-breakfast-tea

Tea today

May. 29th, 2017 10:46 pm
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https://www.harney.com/products/queen-catherine

"We created Queen Catherine, a Harney & Sons signature blend of three Chinese black teas (Keemun, Panyang and Yunnan), in honor of Queen Catherine of Braganza, who introduced her love of tea to the British. We are privileged to have this tea featured in the Museum of Tea in Hangzhou, China. Harney & Sons is the only Western tea company who has received this honor."

Okay, so then Wikipedia says:

"Catherine of Braganza (Portuguese: Catarina de Bragança; 25 November 1638 – 31 December 1705) was Queen of England, Scotland and Ireland from 1662 to 1685, by marriage to King Charles II. She also served as regent of Portugal during the absence of her brother in 1701 and 1704-05, after her return to Portugal as widow. Catherine was born into the House of Braganza, the most senior noble house of Portugal, which became Portugal's royal house after Catherine's father, John, 8th Duke of Braganza, was proclaimed King John IV after deposing the House of Habsburg in 1640."


And as a TEA, what we have is a nicely balanced blend, strength-equivalent to English breakfast, but with the sweeter/mildly smoky/less tannic notes that make it Chinese. I would *absolutely* put boba in it, and be glad of the opportunity to do so.
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The second got mini penne (added raw/dry), red bell pepper, and Zesty Italian sausage, which ended up being a mistake, because it was too chili-hot for me and so the entire casserole was eaten by not-me. Same jar of TJ sauce.

The third got half a pound of gemelli, soaked in cold water while the meat was cooking. Jar of sauce. 2 lb ground beef, cooked and scooped instead of formally drained. Can of olives, crushed. Mix all that together in the 9x13 pan. Added more water so there was liquid at the corners on the level with most of the ingredients, by which I mean, rinse the sauce jar and add that water to the casserole. When done, mix again to distribute the heat and put the crispier bits into the middle. This scooped six portions at 10 oz and a half portion at 4.6 oz and yes, I did that on the scale. The resulting noodles are cooked through, the sauce coats everything but does not drip.
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1 red bell pepper, chopped and sauteed to blacken
1/2 large onion, medium dice, cooked through
4 cloves garlic, crushed and rough-chopped
3/4-ish lb ground beef, cooked on partially-cooked onion, not drained
2/3 lb spaghetti, half-lengths, cooked
1/2 can black olives, broken roughly
1 jar pasta sauce. I use TJ's Tomato Basil Marinara in glass with the green lid.

Stir all that together, after cooking sequentially and transferring to a mixing bowl.

Top with 1/4 lb cheese, grated. Bake 350F/30 min until the cheese is toasty.

Thoughts: We ate it, liked it, but it was rather squidgy and sweet. A slice of garlic bread or a garlic breadstick would have helped a lot. Ditto some green salad.

Use small unit pasta, mixed in uncooked, instead of fully cooked linear pasta. We currently own mini-penne. Keep the red bell pepper raw. Cooking didn't add anything helpful. Add a green bell pepper, but do cook that. Add WAY more garlic. Cook the onion less in the pan. If it weren't for us, a few sauteed mushrooms would be quite nice. Chunks of par-cooked Asian eggplant would be nice too. Consider using Italian Sausage instead of ground beef for More Flavor.
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Ingredients: cherries, sugar, water. It is whole fruit, suspended in bright red syrup. 19 oz bail-top wide mouth jar. According to the manufacturer's website, it only has a six month shelf life, so I guess I am eating a lot of jam for the next two weeks.

It's from Russia via a Russian deli. jamempire.ru and you'll need to go through google translate.
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Tin of Assam."Special Rare Assam Leaf Tea Hajua Estate tea from Taylors of Harrogate" is from a grocery store in Oregon, because I shop for tea when I am on vacation.

It is most likely a Second Flush Assam. Bag in Tin, which is inconvenient only because I did not start by emptying the bag into the tin.

Gone cold, there's a bit of astringency. I know it is brown. This is a terrible assessment. *chagrin face*

I've been drinking this for a few weeks now and it *has* been relatively lovely. Markedly better than TJs Irish within the "Assam and buddies" category.
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http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/1080228.stm

"The Queen's English is drifting down the social hierarchy, scientists in Australia say.

"After trawling through archives of Her Majesty's annual Christmas messages since 1952, they conclude that the royal accent is becoming less "posh".

"The experts, based at Sydney's Macquarie University, believe the vowel sounds of Queen Elizabeth II have been influenced by subjects who are younger or of lower social standing.

"As a result, they say, the Queen's accent is moving towards the standard accent of southern England, away from the cut-glass "upper-crust" accent of the 1950s.Read more... )

Pudding

Apr. 17th, 2017 02:13 am
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"Hmm, this looks like enough cornstarch. Yeah, and I'll finish off this jug of milk. One scoop of sugar in here, and one in the eggs."

>cook in double boiler
>temper eggs
>stir

"Yeah, that looks like the right consistency."

>take off heat
>add chocolate
>taste repeatedly
>add more chocolate, add more sugar, add vanilla
>pour into cooling bowl

#not a recipe
#cooking for myself means +/- 10% of pretty okay is still just fine

Gravy

Apr. 10th, 2017 06:54 am
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Onion gravy, discussed previously, when mixed with corn, becomes *really* close to creamed corn, with the primary difference being the meat broth component. I presume that gravy mixed with lamb-or-beef, carrots, parsnips, mushrooms, potato chunks, and maybe bigger onions, would be the base for some really nice pasty handpies, or under mashed potatoes for shepherd's/cottage pie.
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Today's tea choice is East Frisian, a mixture of Darjeeling, Ceylon and Assam. It's Harney, and basically is German Breakfast Blend. Basically, it's more mild than Irish Breakfast--less astringent and less malty, but more complex also. 1 Tbsp/4:30/orchid pot. One of the teapots I have is painted with orchids, it's in the 4-5c volume range. No orchids were harmed.

Tiramisu is gone. Was good! Wanted espresso rather than coffee on the cookies. Leftover pastry cream mixes well with some fruits and some fruit sorbets. Frozen Pudding Pops are do-able as a quiescent frozen item.

Also we did cornstarch-in-water tests. For 10? oz, 3-4 tsp takes water into the thick stage, and 7 is gloppy and so solid it breaks apart. Cornstarch+bouillon is a terrible gravy omg. Just awful.


Better Gravy

1/4 c butter
-->fry with this 1/2-to-3/2 cups aromatic veggies fine dice
1/3 c flour
-->golden roux

+2-3 c water, milk, or stock to desired thickness
+bouillon goo or powder (I have Better Than Bouillon goo) to desired flavor
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Today I made pastry cream, coffee, coffee-rum tiramisu, tiramisu with citron liqueur. Pastry cream, plain with no vanilla, is surprisingly not good with blackberries.

If you cook this, let me know in the comments.

1 qt whole milk
11 egg yolks and whatever whites stick to them, but not all the whites. About 300g egg yolks/egg.
270g sugar
70g cornstarch

1 pack ladyfingers
2 tubs mascarpone from Trader Joe's

Vanilla extract, a couple teaspoons
Coffee to make 2c brewed. I used medium roast.
Rum, probably 1/4 c? I free poured into the coffee until it tasted nice.
Nardini Grappa Aqua Di Cedro, poured directly onto the ladyfingers from the bottle until the cookies are moist

~~~~

Pastry Cream

Mix cornstarch with some milk, make a paste and stir into the rest of the milk. Add half the sugar to the milk. Cook in double boiler until thick/no starch taste. Heatproof bowl: mix eggs with rest of sugar. Temper eggs, blend back into milk, stir until thick trace. Temp 165F or higher. Strain and cool, stirring frequently.

Tiramisu assembly

Mix one cup of pastry cream per tub of cheese. Add vanilla to taste. Mix brewed coffee with rum.

Glass pyrex loaf pan, 3 layers: 5-6 cookies over bottom; they may be slanted to fit, break one to fit the corners. Pour enough coffee to soak. Smear cheese-cream over to cover. Do that again, then the top layer doesn't need to slant. Cocoa powder over the top, then plastic wrap and into the fridge to set up and become tasty.

Citron the same, but with the extra cookies (6) and cream mixture, and only two layers, and it's in a round small pyrex.

There's a bunch of pastry cream leftover. This quart milk --> pastry cream really would be enough to do up 4 tubs of cheese and 2-3 packs of cookies in possibly a 9x13; my loaf pan is basically half, by volume, of an 8x8 if I recall correctly.



I have 1.3-1.5 cups of egg white leftover. This should be enough to make an angelfood cake, or play with oatmeal lace cookies.

Thoughts

Apr. 4th, 2017 08:13 pm
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I am pleased with the format here. I love the tags-sidebar and am probably going to deep-dive and re-tag/delete stuff while scraping useful content.

The spouse is playing a computer game called Jotun. Player character is Thora, and she's got a bunch of levels to collect skills and fight mini-bosses. The final boss battle has significantly more epic music than the mini-bosses. I presume this is typical for the genre.

Today I made pastry cream, coffee, coffee-rum tiramisu, tiramisu with citron liqueur. Pastry cream, plain with no vanilla, is surprisingly not good with blackberries. Tiramisu, separate post, for benefit of tags.

Hello World

Apr. 4th, 2017 11:05 am
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Let's see how this all works!
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My CSA (Nevermore Farms, in Arbuckle, CA) has you-pick blackberries for $20/gallon. We had a pint basket in today's box and they were fabulous--ripe with low acidity. Contact information is on the site; when you call for an appointment, tell Deborah I sent you.
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Has anybody been here? http://www.viceultralounge.com/ What is the parking situation like around that neighborhood?
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Can somebody please explain today's Two Lumps? http://twolumps.net/d/20090928.html Note the characters are Russian Blue cats.

In real-life kitties, one of our upstairs neighbors has a relatively young, very silky B&W shorthair. He is desperately trying to adopt us for additional pettings; sometimes when we open the door late at night there is a kitty on our porch. The upstairs staircase opens directly onto our porch, so it is legitimately also his porch. We recently saw him in the tree in front of the unit, chewing on twiggy branches around midnight. How to get down? Jump *in between* two of the staircase balusters (3ft jump into 5.5" clearance) and thus onto the staircase itself.
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I found reusable refillable white board markers. They sell you a 6 or 12-pack of pens for $5/pen. Yikes, right? Nope! Here's why: they ALSO sell bottles of ink (=40 pens) plus new nibs. If you can keep track of your pen-bodies, you need never ever buy new ones.

http://www.ecosmartworld.com/order-auspen

Australian engineers = brilliant.
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