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Archive for the ‘misc’ Category

Happy (belated) Birthday to Me!

A bit over 3 weeks ago, I celebrated my birthday.  It has been the tradition for the last several years that Lindz and I would go out for sushi.  This birthday had an added bonus, it was my last official day doing construction.  And as an extra special bonus, we hit the happy hour pricing at Osaka!

IMG_20130827_200416_2Spiraling in from the top and going clockwise, I got tuna, red snapper, surf clam, flying fish roe, smoked eel, smoked salmon, and mackerel.  Most of these I’ve had before, but I did find a couple of new things to try.  I never the flying fish roe sashimi before.  It is served in a cucumber cup.  It wasn’t bad, but I prefer the sushi version that is served in a nori cup.  The cucumber muted the flavor of the roe IMHO.  The stand out was the smoked salmon.  It had a nice but not over powering smoked flavor.

As a thank you / going away present, my boss gave me a really beautiful smoker.

IMG950785It was a good day!

The Day Job

Haven’t been posting a lot here because the day job has me insanely busy during the summer months.  Also been working on a project that should (hopefully) be done by the end of summer.  Unfortunately, that is all the teaser you’re going to get until it’s done.  But in the mean time, here’s a pic from a day in the life of Terry.

 

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My cut-man decided to go fishing for a week, so I get to play with the partner saw.

Categories: misc Tags: , ,

Memorial Day

Just want to give a quick shout out to all the Veterans who have served and sacrificed everything for the things that we all too often take for granted.

For everyone else, here’s a couple of cartoons from the legendary WWII cartoon Willie & Joe, written by Bill Mauldin.

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Decorah Trip No. 2a57fd

Yup.  Just made up a hexadecimal number because I have no idea how many times I’ve written about trips to Decorah and I’m too lazy to figure it out.  Besides, who really reads hexdec anyway?

Anyway, Lindz and I made one of our regular trips to our old stomping grounds.  We stopped by the StoryPeople studio to pick something up and I ran across what I can only assume is one of the limited edition wood paintings.

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A bit more subdued than Brian’s usual work, but I like it.

For those that are curious, the story printed on here is Living Memory.  Speaking of my old workplace, I just found a new sculpture that I got quite a kick out of:

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You can find it here on the StoryPeople website.

What would a trip to Decorah be without eating at La Rana?

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The smoked salmon salad. All local produce. All awesomeness.

Really not a lot to say.  It’s a fun little bar with a great atmosphere and great food all at a small town price.

With Love, Minnesota

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This was taken about an hour and a half ago. And it’s still going strong.

Categories: humor, misc Tags: , , ,

The Golden Age of Sci-Fi

Okay, this one’s not food related, but I think it’s really fun.

One of my favorite genres of literature is science fiction.  There is a special place in my heart for the 1950’s Sci-Fi writing (commonly referred to as the Golden Age of Science Fiction) and the artwork that goes along with it.  Both the writing and the artwork were based on science, but at that time, we knew so little about space travel, a lot of imagination had to be thrown in.  It ended up being a wonderful, if not campy at times, blend of easy and entertaining reading.  The fondness for this style of Sci-Fi has stuck with me since I read my first Asimov book (The Naked Sun, if I remember correctly).  In fact, I’m only 1 of 2 people that I know that actually enjoyed the movie Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow.  The terrible acting and bad CG just made it that much more enjoyable because it fit in with my notion of the pulp Sci-Fi that the story comes from.

So, you can imagine that I was giddy as a school girl when I found the Pulp-O-Mizer!  It allows you to create your own cover of a Sci-Fi pulp rag.  So I naturally had to make my own.

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So There Was A Wind Chill Advisory Today . . .

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Snot-cicles.

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A Motley Autumnal Conglomerate

I’ve been digging through my backlog of photos and I’ve found a bunch of single random ones that more-or-less fall into the category of “fall harvest.”  So this is going to be a bit of a hodgepodge of a post.  (yeah, somebody’s gotten into the thesaurus again)

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The first snowfall of the year.  The Cities were eerily quiet that day.

Throughout summer and fall, Lindz was making semi-regular stops at the local farmer’s market and on one trip she picked up some gorgeous sweetcorn.

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Still working on “prettyfying” some of my photos.

The most consistent way I’ve found to cook sweetcorn is to get a pot of water boiling, add the corn, and let it come back up to a full boil.  I then let it cook for about a minute and then pull it out.  This way the corn is still nice and juicy but doesn’t taste raw either.

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Juuust about ready to be pulled out, buttered, lightly salted, and devoured.

I think it was the same trip that Lindz also picked up some delightful green beans.  These I steam for about five minutes (checking often) so they come out nice and al dente.  Toss with a pat of butter and a pinch each of salt and pepper.

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I love green beans, even if most people cook them to mush.

I enjoy sausages anytime that I can get my grubby little hands on them, but for whatever reason, I always think of them as cold weather comfort food.  I think they are best with either a spicy mustard or some horseradish (preferably homemade).

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A Hobbit approved snack. Perfect for second breakfast.

My boss, Steve, has really been into canning the last couple of years.  This year he was working on perfecting his pickle recipe.  He found a spicy pickle mix (I think it’s this one) at Mill’s Fleet Farm and gave me a jar to try.  It definitely packed a nice punch of jalapeno with a good and crisp pickle.  It was one of those nice burns that wasn’t too overpowering, but stayed with you for some time.  The more you ate, the more intense it got too.

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They look innocent, but they will grab your tastebuds and mistreat them in a way that will have you coming back for seconds. And thirds.

Mom picked up a half bushel box of peaches this fall and make most of it into jam.  It didn’t last very long once Lindz and I opened it and got a taste.

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Yes, Mom has been reusing jars for canning and pickling long before it was in vogue.

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You can just taste the peachy peachness of the peach jam, can’t you?

Along with the usual jellies and jams that Mom made, she also did some salsa this year.  Generally, I’m not a fan because the flavor usually seems dull and overcooked.  Probably the same thing.  This primarily applies to store-bought salsas.  I prefer a nice pico de gallo (fresh uncooked salsa) any day of the week.  However, the recipe that Mom used has me hesitating on my anti-salsa stance.  It was a bit sweet (from the tomatoes), a bit spicy (just enough to round out the flavor), and a whole lot of tomatoey goodness.

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Mmm, salsa. Cha-cha-cha!

And now for something completely different: Oreos.

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I’m a die-hard fan of the original Double Stuff, but these are surprising good. And a nice change to throw into the mix.

Ice Fishing and God’s Twisted Sense of Humor

Due to a screw-up in the work schedule, we ended up with a couple of unexpected days off this past week.  What does one do in Minnesota in the middle of winter when it’s 15 degrees out and a wind chill of 5?  Go ice-fishing, of course.

My boss (Steve), a co-worker (Clint), and I decided that we needed to go sit on some ice for a day and see what happened.  Since the St. Croix River is only a handful of miles from Steve’s place, it made sense to find a spot right off of Bayport.  Clint, being an avid fisherman, knew the area pretty well, so that sealed the deal.

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This is what I stared at for 7 hours.

Clint and I started the day on the Wisconsin side of the river, but we had absolutely no luck.  By the time Steve showed up, we were desperate and ready to move.  So we called our friend Matt (a fanatical fisherman) to see where we should go.  The short of it was we were on the wrong side.  We were good on the north and south, we just needed to be on the west bank instead of the east.  In fact, even before I got my line in the water, Clint pulled up the first fish of the day: a nice sized smallmouth bass.

Of course this got everyone excited, and in fishing terms means that we didn’t see another fish for an hour.

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For the longest time the was the whole of our catch.

After a few beers, one feels nature’s call.  Basically, as soon as I was indisposed, both Clint and Steve reeled in a nice crappie each.  While excited that we finally got more fish, I was beginning to feel left out.

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Stretching my legs, grabbing a beer, and getting out of a 5′ cube crammed with 3 guys.

After several fish nudging my bait, but never taking it, one finally started pulling on the line.  I quickly set the hook and started cranking it in.  Everyone was confused as my “catch” came up to the hole.  Once it popped out, there really wasn’t any less confusion.  Then it slowly dawned on all of us that I just pulled up a mudpuppy.  Or in slightly more scientific terms an aquatic salamander.  Considering that a large one will measure 13″ to 16″, the 10″ one I caught at least was decent sized.

So, not only did I get dubbed with the “good luck leak” moniker, I also got the “ugliest fish” award.  But as Steve pointed out, I didn’t get skunked.

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The ugliest thing I have ever reeled in.

I did sort of redeem myself later when I pulled in a big crappie on Steve’s line, but it still felt a little bittersweet.

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My “share” of the catch.

All in all, it was a decent trip.  Spent some relaxing BS time with my co-workers, got out and enjoyed nature, and even brought home a couple of fish for supper.  The grand total for the day was 2 smallmouth bass, 4 crappies, and a mudpuppy that got thrown back.

Oh, and by the way, the crappies were quite tasty.  I just gutted, beheaded, and scaled them before throwing them in a pan of hot oil.  They didn’t even need any seasoning.  Although I probably would have been better off filleting them, but I didn’t have the energy to do it.  I’ll consider it for the next time.

Gotta Love a Girl in Uniform

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Sexy Lady!

 

Lindz has been putting in a few hours at the Seminary kitchen for some extra cash.  Gotta say, she looks good doing it.

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