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May 2011

Posts from April 2011

Weekend Wrapup

Shrimp boil & sazeracs on Friday, spin class and brunch at Prune with Kim on Saturday followed by a nap, The Social Network, and a relaxing evening, Sunday Metallica/Black Sabbath lesson, reading, writing, then Easter dinner at Lauren's followed by more writing. This Jew had quite a bit of pork and shellfish during this fine Passover weekend, but miraculously passed over the temptation of a Super Heebster at Russ & Daughters.

Constant Craving

Have you ever gotten a craving that was so overwhelming that you just HAD to indulge it?  I don't get cravings like that very often, but yesterday I was hit with the weirdest craving -- for those fried wonton skins that are often served at suburban Chinese restaurants with duck sauce for dipping. I can't remember the last time I had those, but I wanted them. I NEEDED them. So I got them. And they completely hit the spot, but since I had to order an egg roll and a steamed pork bun along with them in order to meet the delivery minimum, that become my (completely unhealthy) dinner. Oh well. I walked home from work, which takes about 50 minutes, to undo a fraction of the damage. Back on a healthier eating program today, but man, those things hit the spot.

Hello, Gorgeous!

Newcomputer My new laptop has arrived. Hallelujah!! It's replacing the one I got over five years ago. Haven't had time to play with it much, but odds are that I won't be leaving the house much this weekend. #nerdalert

Next Year in Jerusalem!

Seder plate

Another successful Seder. Many thanks to Mom, Beth, John, Roopa and Scott for participating, and bringing wine and tasty goodies, including Russ & Daughters gefilte fish and homemade chopped duck liver. I have to say that this year's matzo ball soup was pretty damn killer. The freshly-made chicken stock didn't hurt! The Zuni Cafe roast chicken recipe and Cook's Illustrated slow cooker brisket recipe have yet to fail me, and the Chozen ice cream and a Slivovitz digestif capped off the evening nicely. If I can't make it to Jerusalem next year, my place will have to do.

Spring Cleaning

Just in case you didn't notice, I've done a little spring cleaning here at Sweet Blog o' Mine. I cleaned out (and am still updating) my blogroll, did a little redesign, and removed some redundant links, etc. I hope you like it!  Now if I could just do the same thing with my clothes and some of the junk around my apartment I'd be all set. . .

Chicken Soup for the Soul


You probably already know that homemade chicken stock is infinitely better than anything you can buy in a can. What you may not know is how stupidly easy it is to make. Take a cold and rainy day like today, grab a book or the paper and a few ingredients and you'll be good to go. Generally, any time I make a chicken, I take the bones and put them in a ziplock bag in the freezer until I have enough to make stock. Today, my freezer was empty, so I bought chicken necks and backs (super cheap!) and threw them in a stock pot along with roughly chopped onion, carrot, celery and parsnip, a few garlic cloves, a bay leaf, and some whole peppercorns. Once it's all in the pot, all you need to do is fill with water at least to cover and bring to a boil. Once it boils, turn down the heat to a simmer for as long as you like -- at least several hours. Taste as you go, and don't add any salt until you're happy with the strength of the stock. Strain and chill, and feel free to scrape off the fat if you'd like (but save it for something yummy!).

Spring Has Sprung

I know this because I've got hyacinths on my dining table, the trees are in bloom, it was 80 degrees yesterday, I've got my first spring shoe blister, and I've had my first ramps, rosé, and Cadbury Creme Egg of the season. I've been waiting for you . . .

Booze You Can Use: Mark Your Calendar

Have you made any plans for next week yet? No? Good. I've got you covered, at least for a few nights (you know me, always trying to keep a few nights free, generally failing miserably). Pull out that calendar, and mark down a few key dates for next week and beyond!

Monday, April 11th: Drink for Japan. Drinking's always better when it's for a good cause. In addition to unlimited punch, Gardner Dunn of Yamazaki Japanese Whiskey will be serving up neat pours for $10 and selling T-shirts he had designed for the event.  100% of all proceeds will benefit The Japan Society's Earthquake Relief Fund.

Thursday, April 14th: French Spirits Soiree. The Dizzy Fizz has put together an evening at Astor Center to celebrate La Belle Epoque, offering turn-of-the-20th-centrury spirits, cocktails, punches, and absinthe, along with French cheese and charcuterie by Murray’s Cheese, SCRATCHbread rustic bread, live jazz by The Hot Sardines, a burlesque performance by Calamity Chang and more. Tickets are $40 and are available online.

July 20-24: Tales of the Cocktail. And for those of you looking to plan in advance, tickets are now on sale for Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans. For professionals and enthusiasts alike, this annual event features seminars, events, competitions, tastings, dinner pairings, workshops and more.