Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A Beautiful Mind

2008 was a difficult year for the Stallings and Walt families.

One of our more interesting characters, John Robert, died in late November. I always knew he was a brilliant person, but once he started talking about what he did every day, it was very much over my head.

These two articles about him "dumb it down" only a very little before they get into more depth, and I can no longer keep up.

New York Times


Monday, January 12, 2009


Two new biscuit ideas:

1. Instead of shortening or butter, I'm using true-blue lard. You can buy it at the Kroger. It smells kind of like bacon, only worse, cold, bacon, but you don't taste it once the biscuits are made, AND it gives them the best texture yet.

2. Fold some sliced olives into the dough before cutting it for some savories that are awfully good with a slice of ham in between.


To find more beauty in everyday life.

Grilled Beef Tenderloin

I found beef tenderloin on sale at the Kroger last week. We ate well this weekend.

Isi Thermo Whip

This past Friday I had a little extra time between appointments, and for some reason the Williams-Sonoma up at the Renaissance was calling my name. Turns out they were having a big-ass 75% off sale - they had just finished the second markdown to get merchandise out of the store, and I was about to benefit from it immensely!

They did have some slate le Creuset on sale, but I couldn't bring myself to cough up that kind of dough. If the pot is still there this afternoon, I might have to buy it for Mike to give me for my birthday. But I digress.

They DID have several Isi Thermo Whips up for grabs at 75% off! I've always been fascinated by this kind of gadget, but I wasn't about to part with that much money. What is an Isi Thermo Whip, you ask? It's only the coolest thing in the kitchen ever!

I'm not sure of all the inner workings; let's just say cartridges are involved. For whipped cream, example, you open it up, pour in cream and whatever other flavorings you desire, close it, use the cartridge holder to insert the cartridge until it hisses, shake it, remove the cartridge and throw it away, put the dust cap over the cartridge holder, screw on your preference of nozzle, and voila! You truly have homemade Reddi Whip. Without the preservatives or energy spent in whipping the hell out of the cream. You can use it any way you might use whipped cream.

And it's awesome for mousses. I have a recipe for chocolate mousse I'm going to try next (the downer of the Thermo Whip is that you have to use up all of the stuff inside before you can open it because all of the contents stay under pressure until used up.), then I figure if I can do chocolate mousse, I bet my butt I can do a key lime too. Or maybe a raspberry. The sky's the limit.

I guess the real beauty of this thingy is that truly, all you do is pour stuff in, play with a couple of doohickeys, and it's done. No fuss, no muss. Very high reward for very little effort.

Photo courtesy http://www.easywhip.com/isi-thermo-whipped-cream-dispenser.html


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