Archive for May, 2009

May 17, 2009

American Idol finals this week.

Guess who I want to win? Adam Lambert… based on Mad World and Ring of Fire alone.

May 9, 2009

Know me through food.

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Never being one to turn down a challenge I shall now respond to a similar entry that my pal Milo posted on his blog answering questions about food.

1. Can you cook?

Hell yes!

2. Do you like to cook?

It is one of the great joys in my life.

3. What do you eat for breakfast?

Two coffees and 4 cigarettes…though I realize that is technically not eating.

4. When, where and how do you eat on weekdays?

Always in the office at my desk ofr in the newsroom. What I eat depends on if I have leftovers from dinner the night before. If I don’t have that option I buy creole food from Monix next to work.

5. When, where and how do you eat on weekends?

Same as weekdays but on Sunday I usually make a lunch to take with me to work.

6. How often do you eat in a restaurant?

Very seldom as I find it much easier to cook at home.

7. How often do you order delivery/take-out?

Hardly ever.

8. Buffet, take-out or sit-down restaurant?

Sit-down I guess.

9. What are your signature dishes?

Caesar salad with my yummy dressing, braised pork tenderloin in dijon, fettucine in a creamy morel sauce.

10. Have you ever cooked for more than six people?

I once ran a restaurant so the answer is a resounding yes and tonight I will be helping Alvin out for his nephew’s birthday by cooking for 50.

11. Do you cook every day?

Usually I do.

12. Have you ever tried recipes from blogs?

I have never followed a recipe in my life. All I have to do is see or taste something and I can deconstruct it and make my own version of it.

13. Do you cook totally differently compared to your mother/parents?

I most certainly hope so. My biological father is a good cook but never ventures into the realms of haute cuisine in which I frequently like to frolic.

14. Are you a vegetarian or could you imagine being one?

I went a year without eating anything with a face but I have to confess a taste for steak tartar and anything that came from a pig.

15. What would you like to cook which you haven’t dared to make yet?

I would love to make a cassoulet but the ingredients are key and not available here I also don’t have the patience to spend a day making it.

16. Do you prefer cooking or baking?

I loathe baking because it is all about exactitude and following a recipe.

17. Home-made or store-bought?

Home-made without question..

18. What was your biggest cooking disaster?

I don’t actually think I ever had one but I vaguely recall an unimpressive attempt at chicken mole when I was a teenager ( I used milk chocolate.)

19. What is your number one comfort food?

Soft boiled eggs in an egg cup served with buttered toast soldiers.

20. If you were on a deserted island, what one food would you want to have with you?

Rappini. 

21. What is your biggest weakness when it comes to food?

Anything spicy and especially anything Vietnamese and spicy. Also fresh oysters ( once devoured 5 dozen at a sitting).

22. What food can you absolutely not eat?

I know this is not a common food but in Trinidad people eat pickled chicken’s feet which I find beyond the pale..

23. What is the most decadent dish you’ve had?

Maigret of duck served with a massive helping of sauteed foie gras in the South of France. I still dream about it.

24. What is your favourite type of food?

Vietnamese hands down. Something about the freshness of the ingredients, the zing and the aroma.

25. What is your favourite dish?

Mashed parsnips with gobs of butter.

26. If you could go to any restaurant you wanted, which one would it be?

None spring immediately to mind but if Bourdain were actually in his Le Halles restaurant I would love to be there and meet him. Otherwise I have a soft spot for Bistro de Paris in Bonaire.

27. Are you a soup or salad person?

Salad.

28. What is the most impressive dinner you’ve ever made?

I never cook to impress. I cook to make people happy.

29. Do you know what vichyssoise is?

I make it every now and then…it is the happy soupy marriage of potato, leeks and cream served chilled. A wonderful summer dish so thank you France.

30. Can you name at least three TV cooking personalities?

Surely you jest.

31. Who is your favourite TV cook?

Anthony Bourdain but I adore Nigella in all her voluptuousness.

 

May 8, 2009

The joys of doing nothing

004I didn’t really plan to upload an entry tonight but what the hell. Had a day off today and did basically nothing except watch TV and go to the supermarket. The thing is I am never bored being by myself and actually enjoy it. This seems to be an unusual thing for most young people but since I am addicted to TED and Fora.tv I can be at home and learn new things. How can one ever be bored learning new things from the comfort of home?

Rob called around 7 to ask if I had eaten and he suggested we go for dinner somewhere. I love my own cooking but Rob is excellent company so I said yes.  He picked me up in Cascade and we considered investigating if the new Carlton Savannah in my area was open and had a restaurant but other than a brief veer towards the hotel we kept driving to the Savannah. Then Rob suggested Tamnak Thai ..which I have blogged about previously..but I thought things might have improved. As we got there we decided to go to Apsara ( Indian) instead which is located downstairs. I have never escaped Apsara without feeling I would throw up and on one occassion I almost did so in the restaurant over the meal but I thought what the hell…you never know. We went in, ordered and ate and it really was OK. Not great but OK. I managed to make it home before that weird queasy Apsara feeling swept over me. There must be some combination of the spices, too much coconut milk or oil that does it but I think I will wait at least another year before eating there again.

As I go, and because I am using Vista on my Portege ( not my beloved OS X) to type this I  have a few questions for Senor Gates and his MicroCrap team.

  • Why does the effing thing run so slow?
  • Why is everything not integrated like it is in OS X? Honestly I should be able to drag something from one application to another…but I can’t.
  • Why do you not include an antivirus?  I am happy with Kaspersky ( love those Russians) but seriously ..you know your OS is a virus magnet…protect your customers.
  • Why can I not zoom in on any window like I can in OS X? Sometime I want to see things closer and all I have to do in OS X ixs hold the CTRL key and double finger slide on the trackpad.
  • You are a bigger company than Apple why do you not include a suite of applications like iLife so I can edit photos etc? And don’t get me started on stupid Windows Media Centre. |It is a steaming pile of crap.
  • Your lame widgets are a sorry excuse for OS X’s dashboard…why did you even bother with them when they suck system resources? 
  • Aero? You were kidding right? It is not even close to Apple’s interface…it is sad.
  • Did you watch the clip of Steve Jobs saying you have no imagination as a company? Seriously…you don’t!
May 7, 2009

Finally

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The prodigal blogger returns from the abyss to blog again. To be perfectly honest I have been getting my online expression fix via facebook and experimenting with Twitter. Regarding the latter I am still not sure if it is an expression of pure ego or something useful since there really is only so much expressing one can do in 140 characters. It certainly is fun to follow on my iPod Touch when I am near a wireless network ( which is most of the time). Anyone interested in my sporadic twittering can follow me @globewriter.

Toronto was relaxing and pleasant though the trauma of leaving my parents to return to work in Trinidad was very difficult and moreso because neither is in the best of health right now. I try not to think about it but aging parents is a fact of life just as is my inevitable creep towards the graveyard.

Trinidad has been the usual mess of silliness and incompetence. I missed the Summit of the Americas which resulted in…anyone? …anyone? Absolutely nothing is correct! All we are left with is a PM with an even bigger ego, an undisclosed expenditure but probably well over $100 million US and the prospect of a similar expenditure for the equally useless and irrelevant Commonwealth Heads meeting in November. Ah well, it is only our money and it is not like the world is in a recession or anything because the PM says it is just a “blip” and he knows better than anyone else after all.

The most bizzarre development is the opening of a highway interchange to alleviate traffic problems for those heading south. It is a simple swerving overhead highway section with nothing even remotely impressive or extrordinary about it but it has become something of a magnet for locals. Believe it or not people park on the shoulder of the elevated section for picture taking, having drinks and generally just hanging out. In any other place the police would stop such odd behaviour but when our crew went up a few days after it was open lo and behold the PM and his entourage pulled up and parked on the shoulder so he could have a gander at the view and engage in an impromptu meet and greet. They can talk all they want about this country working towards developed country status ( whatever that means) but when it comes down to it the average mentaility here is actually very much third world.

And finally, I am actually loving my Toshiba Portege and think she is the cutest laptop anywhere and oh so portable. I just wish Windows were not such a dog’s breakfast of bad interface and usability issues. I don’t have Windows Stockholm Syndrome but damn OS X is miles ahead of this pile of unimaginative coding.