Archive for October, 2013


chili and chips

Another session working with masa, a 2 cup mixture, this time added a bit of vegetable oil in addition to the masa, water and salt. The mixture yielded 8 large tortillas that were rolled between two sheets of plastic wrap.

To cook the chips (tortillas), a cast iron griddle was set on the top rack in the oven under the broiler. With the broiler running the tortilla chips were broiled till dry and various shades of gold. The surface of the grille and the tops of the tortillas were sprayed slightly with a bakers non stick cooking oil. Flip as necessary.

The red chili beans were made by starting with sauteed onions, garlic and celery in some reserved bacon fat. Hot small dried red peppers were added ,chopped, (from a take out Chinese dish that were not wanted) and added before the kidney beans and a can of diced tomatoes. Simmer the ingredients in a covered skillet adding seasonings such as cilantro, seeds, ground cardamon, ground cumin etc to taste. Let cool slightly and break up the chips to use as scoops. Scoop up the beans on a chip and add your choice of shredded cheese.

Served with beverages.





Eggplant pizza

A slightly thin crust pizza with strips of eggplant, olive oil and sprinkled with a bit of Italian seasonings, also chopped garlic.
The eggplant was prepared by slicing, salting, letting them sweat the water , rinsing and slicing them into strips.




Fall, Autumn


The above two pictures are from last year .



Sweet and sour bean curd (tufu) soup

One of the advantages of going to a restaurant is that if the portions are large, they remainders can be brought home.

From Apsara resturant.


Krantz cake , brioche, chocolate babka


Krantz cake , brioche, babka chocolate
This is a recipe modified from the original so it can be made somewhat faster.

Through other blogs, here is the link to the original recipe


For the dough

4 cups / 530 g all- purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
1/2 cup / 100 g superfine sugar
2 teaspoons fast-rising active dry yeast
grated zest of 1 small lemon
3 extra-large free-range eggs
1/2 cup / 120 ml water rounded 1/4 tsp salt
2/3cup / 150 g unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into 3/4-inch / 2cm cubes
sunflower oil, for greasing , omit

For the chocolate filling

scant 1/2 cup / 50 g confectioners’ sugar ( superfine)
1/3 cup / 30 g best-quality cocoa powder ,Hershey
4 oz / 130 g good-quality dark chocolate, melted chocolate chips
1/2 cup / 120 g unsalted butter, melted
1 cup / 100 g pecans, coarsely chopped omitted
2 tbsp superfine sugar (superfine)

For the sugar syrup (enough for both cakes)omitted

2/3 cup / 160 ml water
1 1/4 cups / 260 g superfine sugar

As per usual, I have substituted some  ingredients and techniques from the recipe above.

Process regular sugar in blender for superfine, no superfine sugar in pantry, reserve enough for filling.

Omit confectionery sugar.
Heat water and beaten eggs in microwave slightly before added them to the flour.
Use the paddle the for mixing the dough, then  to incorporate the butter.
Use  the dough hook after   about 10 minutes or so a very long mix than a standard recipe.
Form into a ball , coat with butter and place in a bowl (crock) covered to rise.

using quick rise yeast this doesn’t take that long.
Divide by 2, roll rectangles with rolling pin.
Apply filling and roll up
Cut roll in half lengthwise leaving one end attached together.
Braid, as recipe directs to parchment lined pans.

repeat with remaining dough

Omit pecans from filling
Use superfine sugar  only
Omit simple sugar coating.


mixing the dough


add the butter, this recipe uses a lot. Medium to slow speed.




back to the dough hook



the dough will come clean from the bowl when finished



ingredients for the filling


Old school double boiler to mix the filling. refrigerate slightly after to paste consistency.


pans are prepped


rising in crock in unheated oven


rolling, dough is very pliable





cut ends from rolled dough


rising in unheated oven






finished texture of dough, very good desert bread or coffee , tea accompaniment.


Good morning

Proving one’s presence or the proof of identity security questions.

It’s needless to say that who you say you are becomes more necessary in the digital world. One of the more annoying aspects of proving identity is the “security or secret questions” often employed to prove one’s identity.

It seems to have started out as a simple question asked by the website, business etc. that only the user of of that identity, so to speak, could answer. Now that leaves some persons, including myself in a dilemma.

One one side of the coin, I could care less about revealing some aspect of myself online. Once you reach a certain point about being guarded about your identity, and you see the multitude of other personas online who may not be as guarded about being revealing, you simply respond to the questions possibly to be friendly in nature.

The other view, shared by some security advisors , would be not to reveal any information whatsoever to confirm your identity with the thought of doing so would allow identity theft or identity cloning or some sort of pandering. Now the response to the questions selected would be to misinform or scramble the answer.

Now evolved, the simply security question has become multiple questions to the point of selecting from a list the questions themselves at an attempt to strengthen the safeguard of ones proof of presence.

Now in a situation like this , I’m baffled, not even by the deciding if I choose to answer the question , but by their list of choices of questions to select!
Is It really a part of ones identity to know for instance, who your oldest nephew is or where you met your spouse, where you were born or the most liked car you drove?
Strain my brain why don’t you !

Now the dilemma of even revealing an important item of my life is jumbled by the fact that the listed choice of questions seems to indicate what I should know about myself. Even though I don’t expect to have the answers to all the questions proposed for selection to answer, their listing irks me. So the alternative is the pick any question and answer it with a string of random characters. That would really piss anyone trying to collect important tidbits of your life. But would it label you as a disrupter ?

More coffee please.


Potatoes with onions and sage

This morning browsing the web with a cup of coffee, now time for some chow.

Lately, I have been cooking with an electric skillet, a basic one that we’ve had for years.

A recipe free dish I cooked this afternoon.

a one pan (skillet) side dish , or entree depending on your appetite.

Fry some sliced potato (2medium) slices in oil or butter of choice

Flip to brown on both sides

Add sliced onions

Sauté several minutes
Add some stock and a touch of soy sauce.

Add a slight amount of Garlic infused olive oil.

Mix up about 3/4 cup , or by eye, milk and tablespoon flour.
Add to the simmering fry pan, till bubbly and thickened.

Reduce heat to warm, till the mixture in heated through.

Garnish with fresh ( if possible) sage .IMG_3504

Served  with a cup of coffee.


so what else goes on a typical Sunday morning?

IMG_3493make some simple syrup.








IMG_3494proof yeast for bread.

This recipe I kneaded by hand for more than 5 minutes.







IMG_3496placed in covered crock to rise








IMG_3506into the oven covered to bake.










updating desktop machine.

probably too many computers

make ………………..?


BTW XP is still supported.




have to do some real physical labor to offset sedentary life style to

verify my home ownership and social status to the naysayers.

do to a generous friend , an Ipad and Macbook made this posting possible, learning curve for the Apple system. I am thankful.



October 2013
« Sep   Nov »

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