Sunday, August 9, 2015

Cauli experiment

I love cauliflowers, a most versatile veg. The vege stall at the weekly Saturday market yesterday had some irresistible caulis, so cheap that I bought two, which is a bit rash when you live alone. I often seem to buy too much food but these two beauties won't go to waste.

So for today's lunch I did a bit of experimenting. I trimmed and riced one of the caulis then sauteed it with some cumin seeds, some ground cumin, turmeric, ground coriander, a few chili flakes and salt, then put a lid on it and let it steam until it was soft.  I put the cooked cauli in a bowl and when it cooled I mixed in two beaten eggs and a tablespoon of coconut flour.  (If I had any fresh coriander I would have added some, but it's winter and I don't have any in the garden yet.) Then came the tricky bit - making little patties and dropping them into hot fat (I used clarified butter) to cook them. They need to be handled and turned carefully as the mixture is a bit crumbly and tends to fall apart. (Just squash it back together.) The result is quite good - nice and soft on the inside and firm on the outside. It made 10 patties. They could have been crisper, I'll work on that! I served them with a slice of fresh lime and some lemon pickle.  Next time I'll omit the spices and add herbs and maybe a little grated cheese instead.

I got the idea from the Empowered Sustenance blog, original recipe here. Now I just have to decide what to do with the second one.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Puppy eyes

I'm babysitting a friend's puppy for the day. This is Louie, a Border (I think) terrier. Or maybe an English terrier? I need to look it up. A terrier, anyway. About 3 or 4 months old and cute, and lively. Oh my, he's lively! At the moment he's taking a nap after rushing around in the garden all morning. He had plenty of toys, but he preferred to play with this muddy old plastic flower pot he found in the garden and thoughtfully brought inside.


Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Am I being unreasonable?

I found this clip on STFU Parents, and I confess I empathised, and I laughed. Like Mary Bourke, I have no children. "No sad story, I just don't like them." I don't dislike them, in fact I quite like some of them. It's the parents I don't get on with.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

A mesmerising moment

Sharif stories are all over the web and in all the papers this morning, and I've been thinking about the the first time most of us clapped eyes on the bloke, when David Lean cast him in "Lawrence of Arabia." What a movie that is.  I saw it at the Embassy Theatre in Wellington, when it came out in the Sixties, and it was a revelation. I didn't know cinema could be like that! I've seen it many times since then.

In one of the most memorable entrances in cinema history Sharif's character, Sherif Ali, first appears out of a mirage (about 0.45 in the clip below) and slowly approaches Lawrence and his Bedouin guide. Tension mounts as the shimmering black clad figure slowly comes into view. I read that Lean said that the shot originally lasted over four minutes but he got nervous that audiences would revolt, and cut it down to what you see in the clip below.

Another memorable moment is this cut from close up to long shot as the sun rises over the desert. Combined with Maurice Jarre's music you can justifiably call it breathtaking.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

The two Freds

'He introduced himself as Omar Sharif.And I said: no one can be called Omar Sharif,that's impossible.So I called him Cairo Fred.It was shortened by everybody else to Fred and we became known to David as the Two Freds...Los Dos Freds. We just became inmmediately friendly'
Peter O'Toole.
I read in this morning's paper that actor Omar Sharif has died. Here's a great little story from Peter O'Toole, courtesy of Facebook. I like this photo of the two of them on the set of Lawrence of Arabia. R.I.P. Omar, and I hope you find a few decent hands of bridge, wherever you are.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Congratulations Sir George

The Queen has knighted George Ivan Morrison, better known as Van Morrison. Good for him! I wonder what the famously shy and reclusive Morrison thinks about being a knight. I've been a fan since the late Sixties when Astral Weeks burst upon the world in all its extraordinary beauty.  I've spent the afternoon dusting off my CDs and re-acquainting myself with his music.

The Healing Game - one of his best records, in my opinion

Sunday, May 31, 2015

21st century vampire angst

I finally saw Only lovers left alive last night, a movie I'd been curious to see ever since I first read about it. Written and directed by Jim Jarmusch, it's about two lovers, who just happen to be centuries-old, sophisticated world-weary vampires. Tom Hiddleston and Tilda Swinton, both class acts, make utterly believable vampires. I don't think Hiddleston smiles once during the entire movie, and the action (for want of a better word, because there is very little of it) takes place entirely at night, which is logical given the subject matter. Incidentally, the word "vampire" isn't used at all in the film.
Mr and Mrs Vampire

This sort of art-house movie is not my usual cup of beverage, I'm more of a comedy fan.  It is very slow, hypnotic, dream-like, and dialogue-heavy. In fact it's all dialogue and minimal action, major angst. About an hour in I turned to my friend and asked, "is it just me, or is nothing happening?" Yep, nothing is happening but it is riveting nothing, and beautiful to watch.

It seems to have polarised the critics, some of the reviews are ecstatic, some are vitriolic. I loved it.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Perfect seagull photobomb

Take a moment to appreciate the perfection of this photobomb. Seagull snapped at the perfect moment. Found at The Poke.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Tea and chocolate

I did a supermarket run this morning and I noticed the new Whittaker's Artisan range of chocolate. (I get irritated by misuse of the word "artisan" as a marketing tool but that's a digression for another time). I thought I'd try the Oolong tea flavour, as I like tea, and I like chocolate, what could go wrong. So I bought a block, took it home, made a pot of tea and sampled a piece. Verdict: I hate it. I never thought I would use "hate" and "chocolate" in the same sentence, but there it is. I actually threw the rest of the block into the rubbish. It does have a very strong tea flavour, especially the aftertaste (it lingers still!) but in my opinion tea and chocolate is a mismatch.

Talking of mismatches, Coco won't be coming to live with me. She is a very sweet girl and amazingly affectionate considering the tough life she has had, but she is just too big and strong for me. However I don't think she'll have a problem finding a forever home.