Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Procrastination Part II, or I Made Cheese, and It Tastes Like Cheese!

I should be writing a speech right now. Because this is my chore for the evening (thank Dog this term is over soon), I also decided to check on the Gouda I made earlier this year. It has now been the requisite 60 days, so I sampled.

Oh dear Dog, it tastes like cheese. Like, actual cheese. Not Mascarpone or Ricotta. Hard, aged cheese! Just call me a proud squirrel right now. Tomorrow, I shall take some into the office to turn my buddies into guinea pigs.

Bon apetit, and have a lovely evening (I am back to my speech now)!

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Prime Ways to Avoid Homework

This term, I am taking a class called Managerial Accounting. The subject matter of this course is exactly as exciting as it sounds. Not more, not less. The homework and quizzes are due Sunday by midnight. So, for the last 9 weeks, my Sunday routine has consisted of coming up with various ways of putting it off as long as possible. Then, feeling deep regret when I finally get around to doing the assigned work. Note here that this is an online course that I have the option of completing early, should I so desire. But did I bust my bottom and solidly work for a few extra hours each week and just get it done, thus reducing this torture? No. No I have not. Unlikely that I will, either.

So, what pray tell, am I doing today in my quest for procrastination? Let me enlighten you.

First off, canned beans! After an epic post-Challenge trip to the bulk section of Winco, I found myself in possession of several pounds of dried beans. I tend to be a raging cheapskate, and always go the dried bean route versus canned because it just costs SO MUCH LESS. However, I always somewhat resent the soaking/cooking process. Not out of laziness, but because of the fact that most recipes use about a cup of dried beans. I usually end up extrapolating up three or four times and freezing the rest for later use.  About a month or so ago, I ran into these instructions of how to home can beans. Well, well, I have a pressure canner that I am no longer petrified of, and dried beans. So, I gave it a shot. Easy peasy, and for roughly the same amount of time normally committed to soaking and cooking, I had nine pints of black and navy beans ready to just pull off the shelf and use. Hurrah! So, as I type, there are 9 jars of kidney and pink beans in the canner. Plus, Garbonzos, Mayo Cobas, and Red Beans pre-soaked for canning this week. The only downside to this process is that it makes the house smelly really "beany". Like, cooking pounds and pounds of beans "beany".

Still boiling, and will continue to do so for an hour or so.

Second, Lemon Pepper. Last year, I happened upon cheap Meyer Lemons and decided to make salted preserved lemons. And they sat in the fridge. Because I always forget they were there. They are quite delightful in the few recipes that I have used them in, however, a year later they were still hanging out in the back of my fridge, delicious and unloved. So, I threw them in the dehydrator yesterday, and blended them with peppercorns. The result is phenomenal. I am going to mix a bit of it with oil to dress a piece of Dover Sole that's been kicking about the freezer for a while for dinner. And make little grunts of piggy joy while I consume it. The master plan though is to use it when tuna season rolls around and I buy a whole fish. Dress filets and vacuum freeze. More grunts of piggy joy to follow.

Lastly, I am nearly out of half and half, so naturally I will have to make a grocery trip. One cannot be out of half and half. Oh! And I will have to flip the Cotswold and check on the new Parmesan.

Gouda with a little speck of mold in the lower right, which had to be removed.

Parmesan. Already had mold to be wiped off. Only about 50 weeks until it's ready!
 And write this confessional. Yes, yes, things that must be done.

Then, homework. Sigh.

Bon apetit, and have a beautiful week!