Monday, December 20, 2010

Mr. Garbanzo, you’re looking good.

Maybe you guessed from the title, but now it’s official! My favourite bean ever is the chick pea. Yay! Woohoo! Applause! So many different ways to eat it, in some curry; make some hummus; spice it up!

Here are my two favourite ways to eat Mr. Garbanzo Bean. Unfortunately I don’t have any hummus recipes that I’ve tested out yet. So this is it for now:

Chickpea Curry (Originally adapted from a Patak’s Butter Chicken Paste recipe)

2 tsp. curry powder
1 tsp. vegetable oil or vegan margarine
1 (540ml) can chick peas, drained and rinsed*
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium tomato, chopped

Spices of your liking: I like chilli powder and dill weed. The recipe recommends fresh cilantro and mint. (Bleh)

1 green chilli pepper, cut length wise; if you have it.
1/2 tsp. raw sugar.

Heat vegetable oil in frying pan over medium-high heat.

Fry onions until soft, add tomatoes and reduce heat.

Add green chilli pepper and chick peas. Mix with curry powder. Season with spices & herbs. Stir in sugar & serve.

I don’t mention cooking times because they never work out for me, especially when frying. So use your own judgement and don’t ignore the pan!

Roasted Chickpeas (From Alive magazine)

500ml cooked chickpeas (or one can, drained & rinsed*)
1 Tbsp. mustard (not the prepared-yellow kind,  although I did use that too.)
1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon ( I don’t now how much that is measured out, because we didn’t have fresh lemons lying around. If anyone finds out, be sure to tell me!)
1 tsp. Montreal steak seasoning
Chipotle pepper to taste

Preheat oven 375 F

Toss chickpeas with mustard, olive oil, lemon juice, and spices in a 8x8 inch dish. Bake for 30 minutes until golden brown.

Montreal Steak Seasoning (Alive magazine)
No steaks harmed in the making of this seasoning. (I have to tell it to myself.)

2 Tbsp. paprika
2 Tbsp. black pepper
2 Tbsp. kosher salt
1 Tbsp. garlic powder
1 Tbsp. onion powder
1 Tbsp. coriander
1 Tbsp. dill
1 Tbsp. red pepper flakes

Store in glass jar with airtight lid.

When buying onion and garlic powders in the store, bypass the onion and garlic salt. This will help you avoid overly salty food and still have delicious, savoury dishes. This warning comes from experience.

*Remember to always rinse your chickpeas after soaking them. The water they are in can cause digestive upsets (gas) when used in cooking.  As if beans weren’t bad enough!

Happy chickpea cooking!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Elaboration outside of the laboratory.

Now to elaborate on the last Big Bang Theory episode:

Episode 68: The Desperation Emanation.

The part here that had me laughing the most was at the end, when Sheldon and Amy were talking via webcam to Amy’s mom. Sheldon leaning into the frame to say he has regular intercourse with her daughter was just too funny. It’s so difficult to tell when those two are joking. Ending the conversation with, “My loins ache for Sheldon.” was too much for the flabbergasted mother. Hilarious. And too much for me, as well, it seems. I could not stifle those laughs.

And Leonard, poor Leonard; lying on the couch. How I feel pity. I hope he is not so sour in the next episode. I believe Penny will come to her senses sooner or later. But Leonard needs to get a hold of himself first, before that happens. Unless they introduce a very appealing character, I will not be happy if Leonard ends up with a different girl other than Penny. It’s so cute, because he’s so short, and wears glasses. Someone needs to slap him though. He can’t fill any void in himself with girls and sex for very long. Leonard really is the true lecher. I often feel sad for the character though, when his childhood is mentioned. All very entertaining and keeps me hooked, for sure. Now I’ve developed emotional attachments for the characters. Most positively, I will enjoy this show for the next 4 years, I’ll be in my early-to-mid twenties by then. Kind of funny to think of.

But who can predict what will happen, except the writers. They already know where the story is going to end up.

At the end of that 70’s show, they were going to college. Eric and Donna got married, if I remember correctly, but it didn’t work out for them and then Eric went to Africa to volunteer or work and help, and what not. Donna was dating that new character for a while. Also, Kelso became a police officer and had a daughter. (of course, who didn’t see that coming) Nice touch though. I don’t remember what became of the rest of the gang. But from just that little bit, I can tell that most of it was predictably, what those character’s would do. Eric and Donna’s relationship was there from the beginning, of course Eric would eventually run away, and Kelso’s womanizing ways and dim wits would land him with a child (did it really take that long?)

Anyways, with The Big Bang Theory being so popular, there’s no doubt it will squeeze up to seven seasons. How will it end? I guess I’ll just have to watch once a week. (Don’t make me wait two weeks in between episodes like the last season.)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Joy is Ultimate! And that’s a Favourite.

This is a post to express my joy for my ultimately favourite television shows.

Today is Sunday, October 24th; when new episodes of Heartland air on television. Although I probably won’t get around to posting this as soon as that, ah well.

I’ve always felt embarrassment to admit my love for this show. It just seemed too much like a fluffy TV Drama, and really it is. I’ve decided that it’s 100% better than soap operas. (Excuse that, soap fans. Also, why are they called operas? They don’t sing the dialogue.) It’s also just as much better than TV Dramas about teenagers in California, and “reality” television shows that layer on more cheese than rennet from a cows stomach can make. (Those kind of vegan jokes make me chuckle.)

The fact that Heartland is also set in Canada, close to BC, and have even mentioned my hometown several times give it a little boost. Although I’ve never been a horse person, I do love them animals something heavy. Even if I don’t always agree with horses being used that way; have you ever seen an old horse’s back? *tear* Maybe horse’s backs sag that way over time anyways, even without saddles. I wouldn’t know, but I don’t think anyone who’s ever owned a horse would either.

I am enjoying the new season of Heartland more than ever, though. While I’m on the subject of new television show seasons, I should voice my dislike of the new House season. Once listed as one of my favourite shows, I watched the season premier expecting no disappointment. I never liked Cuddy, much less House and Cuddy together. Why should I endure a whole hour of them being sappy? I dislike very much. In my words: I liked it better when House was in the Mental Hospital! Also, in that episode, I hardly remember there being a medical case. The main reason why I watch a doctor drama!

Otherwise, The Big Bang Theory is pleasing. I do enjoy the Sheldon and Amy pair. They can make me giggle. And I hope to see more on Bernadette and Howard. But I get ticked off when Leonard is with any girl other than Penny. I should hope they would get back together but it doesn’t look promising. Leonard is still cute though, any way you put him.

Now, to get to the point! Why I’m enjoying Heartland:

Badger is a nice addition. I can accept him with ease. (Unlike the millions of new additions on House!) He’s nice new eye candy and I do love the relationship between him and Mallory. I can’t wait to see it progress. (Jake is too much of a horse-dork.) I also enjoy how Tai has improved and with Badger around, the improvement is that much more evident. I seem to remember something about Tai training to become a vet. It’s just good personal growth! Tai and Amy’s relationship is smooth-going at last. Finally what viewers have been waiting for! And boy, is he handsome.

Lisa was getting on my nerves in this episode, trying to change the ranch. I couldn’t help but smile with Lou when Serena shot down those plans. Lou’s whole fiasco was a bit annoying, she’s never really my favourite character. But at the ending when she compromised with Peter and hired Serena to be her manager after all, I’ll admit it was a bit beautiful. (Maybe it was the lighting?) At least she came to her senses and finally decided, and she will get to be with Peter. Even though she’s a strong willed character who knows what she wants, I always find Lou to be a bit indecisive until the last minute. Always an annoying trait to watch. But her soft moments are quite touching. Must be the acting. I’m saying she’s a good actor!

I don’t know the Heartland actor’s names. Possibly I’ll be motivated enough to look it up soon. I’ve often found that the actress who plays Amy Fleming wasn’t all that convincing. But you can tell she’s really trying to convey the character in a certain way, so I can over look it. I think she doesn’t want to overdo the tragic, broken character and still is trying to portray the loss a character like that would have to deal with. All in all, I believe she’s improving as an actress.

Top Favourite Direction Television Shows Are Taking:

2. The Big Bang Theory
1. Heartland

Yep, that’s a short list.

Finally is not Finality.

Yes! Finally! If you watched the Big Bang Theory episode that aired on Thursday, October 14, then you may understand.

The episode also known as Hot Troll Deviation. Now you know why I’m so excited, right?

*There Will Most Likely Be Spoilers*

I read some reviews about it, but they mostly stated how much they like the on-going Sheldon and Raj feud. Then again I only read two reviews. Nevertheless, I like Raj, and Sheldon is great; but what really made me smile was Howard.  We saw the usual lecherous Wolowitz, as shown by the reason Bernadette and Howard broke up. But then, finally, we see some human emotion from Howard, as he begs Bernadette to forgive him! Could it be? Howard can feel with something more than sexual desires? Sure, it was the desire to have a woman to maim that propelled him, but the fact that he could feel enough to express that desire and confess his feelings gave him more authentic qualities. That Howard Wolowitz could be more than a slimy sleaze-ball in tight pants put a smile on my face. And how Howard was too afraid to express his desires at first when he and Bernadette were originally together also enhances these qualities. Maybe we can see after all, why he’s such a lecher in the first place.

*End Of Possible Spoilers* 

Of course there was the usual laughs, as in any Big Bang Theory, but you can officially count me as a Howard Wolowitz fan. I look forward to seeing how his character develops later on in the season.

Top Five Favourite Big Bang Theory Characters:

5. Penny
4. Sheldon Cooper
3. Rajesh Koothrappali
2. Leonard Hofstadter
1. Howard Wolowitz

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Obsessions May Wayne, But The Love Stays.

If you’ve never heard of Clive Barker, then you have heard of him now. And if you have heard of him before, you know how awesome he is.

Seriously, go Google him.

He’s only like the coolest guy on the planet--Yes, I am about to say it--cooler than Adrien Brody! I never thought I would say that, but then again, the only thing that’s great about Brody is his body.

Better than Googling, go pick up a copy of Midnight Meat Train, and maybe become a fan of Director RyĆ»hei Kitamura as well. And don’t forget the menacing Vinni Jones as Mahogany!

I’ll say it again. Midnight Meat Train is an ultimate movie! I loved it so much.  Is it strange for a vegan to like a movie with such a title? Yes, the meat-packing plant made me queasy, and maybe the violence is a bit glamourized at times, and there can be cheesy moments and out-of-place one-liners; it all doesn’t beat such emotional cinematography, and the way the story—in Clive Barker’s words himself—draws you in seamlessly, with out breaking the line from reality, to the darkness and fear.

Why Clive Barker is so great:
Clive Barker wrote the short story Midnight Meat Train. There is a series of three books titled the Books of Blood written by him. Not only does he write cool horror stories, he paints fantastical pictures on large canvases. Sometimes frightening scenes, others of wonderment. Using bold colours he creates different creatures and vivid dreamscapes. Even his rejects are beautiful enough to hang on a wall! Although he didn’t direct MMT, he has directed other movies before, often with iconic characters like Pinhead in Hellraiser. Clive has said he enjoys writing and painting more than making movies because his writing and painting allow him to freely express his creativity without being censored or being questioned as to why he is choosing to use a certain word or colour. But he wishes to make more movies.
I never mentioned this… he’s a vegetarian, too. How much cooler can you get? It feels that as a gay man, he is communicating these things that are so much a part of him, saying something about them and finding the fear in them. It works, as he brings realism into a story that could fail so badly in the wrong hands. Yes, we can also enjoy the truly cheese-ball horror movies that make us giggle, there will always be plenty, new and classic.

Many parts of MMT had me on the edge of terror, in a realm of fright. I wanted to know what would happen next, and the conclusion to this movie is a satisfying one. Can’t wait to discover more of his work!

I <3 Clive Barker.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Test Blog Post

This is a test. Now you may continue. I will be using this blog to post entries about things I enjoy. These things include: art I see, movies I see, television I see, places I see/visit, celebrities I see/love/obsess over, music I hear/listen to, and my general opinion, thoughts, rants and maybe a little review, but nothing really official or professional. I hope you will enjoy my writing style, or not.  It doesn’t matter, none of this is concrete. Would you enjoy my short stories & poems too? Please feel free to comment, even criticize. All writers know how to take it.