Friday, October 30, 2015

Bad Coffee Habits



This was another article I saw on MSN. The person who wrote it clearly doesn't know the FULL SCOOP about coffee. (see what I did there?) Here are the “bad things” about coffee that we are to give up. You know what I say? “When you pry my coffee mug out of my cold, dead, hands!!”

Whipped cream. Phooey. Not giving it up.

Sugar. Phooey. Ditto.
Don't buy it, make it. Invest in high quality coffee or espresso maker.
OK, I admit it's a LOT cheaper to make it yourself. But I've TRIED. MANY times. It does NOT resemble fancy bought coffees.

Creamer. If you MUST use it, soy creamers are better. Vegan creamer is best of all.
Have you checked the prices on specialty creamers? Huh? Phooey again.

Before bed...caffeine no, decaf yes.
Once again, this one makes sense. It's OK.

Too much caffeine
Another sensible one. Sarah was hooked on caffeine in high school. I know people who cannot have it or they'll start shaking. Just know yourself.

Splurging on the venti. You may become more caffeine dependent. And if you begin the day with a huge amount of caffeine, you will crash later. The article suggests starting your day with a small one, and having another later in the day.

Coffee syrups....no healthy version for this. Phooey.

Any kind of a “mocha”. Might as well drink a milkshake. Very high in calories.
Ask me: is it worth it? Hell, yeah!

It seemed the main complaint was adding sugar and calories. They advised to just drink PLAIN COFFEE. WHAT GOOD IS THAT???

Phooey.


Thursday, October 22, 2015

Foods to try before you die



This was one of those articles on MSN. I chose a few from the list and put them in 4 categories: Yes/already tried, Maybe, Highly doubt it, and finally, DEATH FIRST! (to quote Westley)

In the first category are the following:
1. Frog legs and rabbit. I've eaten both, and they were fine, but I wouldn't go out of my way to eat them again.
2. I've also had baklava and bread pudding. And YES, I would go out of my way to eat them again. And have.
3. Scotch eggs. I've heard about this dish many times in Brit literature. Hard boiled egg wrapped in sausage meat, breaded and fried. What's not to like? I would definitely like to try this.
4. Japanese kobe beef. Would LOVE to try this without having to take out a bank loan first.
5. Prickly pears. I've always been curious as to what it tastes like. It's used to make candy, jelly and drinks.

Maybe category:


1. Fried alligator, kangaroo steak. As long as it's well cooked, I'd try either.
2. Baba ganoush. Heard this name so many times watching Most Extreme Elimination Challenge that I would HAVE to at least try it. I've had eggplant parmigiana, and enjoyed it.

Highly doubt it:
1. Borsch. Hate beets. 'nuf said.
2. Durian. Very stinky Asian fruit. Supposed to be healthy, but the smell has made it banned in public places. That should be a hint in itself.
3. Black pudding sausage made with pig's blood. Ick.
4. Caramelized grilled eel. Doubt it.

DEATH FIRST!
1. Sea urchin w/caviar. Even the article said it was not suitable for all palates. Pass.
2. Escargot/Haggis. Not this side of the grave. Snails and sheep offal. No thank you!
3. Grilled octopus. Nope nope nope nope nope nope nope nope. One for each tentacle.

So there you have it. Just gimme a cheeseburger and a slice of baklava, please.


Thursday, October 15, 2015

A Beast More Stomach Than Man



And yes, that is a Simpson's quote. And yes, this is about all-you-can-eat buffets.

Sadly, I'm not the trencherman I used to be, so don't get as excited about these things as I did in the past. I would look in amazement at people who would take their relatively little plate and pile it 4-5 inches high with SALAD of all things, and drenched in dressing! First of all, you DO get to go back as many times as you like, so no need for trying to take it all in one go. Second, SALAD???? When you can chose pizza, fried chicken, clam chowder, etc??? And since I've NEVER been a fan of dressing of any kind, to see these mountains dripping with what looks to me like something sneezed out....you get the picture.

My mom and I used to go out to lunch frequently at the Sizzler in Chico. The only salad I would eat was the taco salad that I would put together myself. And then maybe have some fried chicken. And always the dessert bar.

Here in Oroville, we had Golden Corral which we went to a LOT. No taco salad available, but the fried chicken was tops. I might get a small salad made of a little lettuce, but lots of pepperoni, garbanzo beans, sunflower seeds, bacon bits, olives and cheese. NO DRESSING. And the cobbler was warm and delicious no matter what the fruit at that moment was. With caramel sauce and ice cream on it...YUM!

In Fresno there is a John's Incredible Pizza that is beyond my wildest dreams. I had never heard of this chain before. Not only do they have salad, which I pretty much ignore, but there is fried chicken AND pizza!! And breadsticks! And the dessert bar is phenomenal! It's pricey, and like I said, I can't really do an all-you-can-eat place justice anymore, so this kind of place is definitely for special occasions, not all the time.

When Marv and I were on vacation in Eureka, we ate at a Sizzler there. They had a Senior Special where you got shrimp, baked potato AND salad bar, for a very reasonable price. The shrimp was good, the potato was perfect, and I got fried chicken from the salad bar. They had baked custard at the dessert bar, and I LOVE custard. This was very bland, though, so after a couple of bites I went back and put chocolate ice cream on it. I have to admit that I had to give Marv a couple of my shrimp because I was getting full, but I am NOT going to pass up a dessert bar! My standards may be low, but I DO have them!

Bon app├ętit!!

Thursday, October 8, 2015

October 2015 Book Report



The Rightful Owner (2014) by Emily Thomas

A Blue Hill Library mystery. Anne finds a rare book of Edgar Allen Poe stories in a box of donated books for sale. She discovers it's worth a lot of money and wants to find the owner, who may have donated it without realizing it's worth.
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Cracking the Code (2014) by Emily Thomas

Another Blue Hill mystery. Someone leaves a bag of money on the steps of the library. While the money would go a long way for much needed repairs, Anne needs to find out first who left the money and why. She also discovers information leading her to wonder if her late Aunt Edie was a spy for the US during the Cold War.
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The Case of the Beautiful Beggar (1965) by Erle Stanley Gardner

I grew up watching Perry Mason on TV. I had a mad crush on Paul Drake (William Hopper). I had never read any of the books, though. I got this one from a used book store in Eureka. Great read! I could picture it all so clearly in my mind, since I already knew what the main characters looked like. It was like watching one of the TV episodes. In this one, young Daphne, ward of the rich Horace Shelby, is set to inherit his vast fortune until greedy relatives try to cash in sooner.
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Laura, the Life of Laura Ingalls Wilder (1976) by Donald Zochert

Another awesome find at the bookstore in Eureka. I read and loved all the Wilder books in my youth. I thought the TV show was OK, but they changed a lot of things from the books that I didn't care for. Reading this biography made me want to get all the books and read them again.
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Dead Matter (1993) by M. K. Wren

Huge fan of this woman! Especially her Conan Flagg mysteries, and this is one of them. They always make me want to go to that area on the Oregon coast. And I love the fact that Conan has this cozy little bookstore that is ruled by his cat. In this book, Conan tries to find out who killed the beautiful movie star's writer husband. What makes it harder is the fact that no one mourns the guy.
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In the Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson (1984) by Bette Bao Lord

Awesome, awesome book! And it was FREE from that bookstore in Eureka. Probably because the cover had been torn off, but was otherwise fully intact. It was a paperback like the kind kids get at book sales at school. Good story about a Chinese family that comes to the US after WWII. The father came over first to get established, and then sends for his wife and daughter. When the little girl is asked to chose an American name to use as her own, the only American name she knows is Shirley Temple. So she becomes Shirley Temple Wong. As she slowly gets used to a very new way of life, she is introduced to American baseball. She quickly becomes a huge fan, especially of Jackie Robinson. She lives for when the games are broadcast on the radio at home. The author drew on her own experiences as a newcomer to this country.