Sunday, April 15, 2012

Amazing World we live in now...

Wow. Technology will continue to allow us to do the most amazing things, improving our lives in ways we can't yet see. This story is incredible, about a little boy who got lost, ended up being adopted out to another continent, and then, miraculously, was able to find his hometown and his family again once he grew up, thanks to Google Maps!

From the BBC:

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Happy Easter (dinner)!

Hope everyone has a wonderful, peaceful Easter weekend. I'm working, of course. :) Hotels never close! But I still made a nice meal for us to enjoy, albeit separately.

I tried this recipe for ham, but left out the sauce (I just used a little toupie ham, so the drippings weren't really existent). So basically, it was a steaming, then glazing with Dijon and brown sugar, followed by a packing on of toasted bread crumbs baked on high heat for a few minutes. It looks DIVINE...

For sides, I went with mustard mixed pickles (a jar of Habitant in the fridge is a great memory of childhood, it always goes great with pork and ham dishes), my fave pidpenky (my own recipe, an amalgam of ones I found online) with garlic, wine and beef consomme, candied carrots (with a little butter and brown sugar, although this sounds really good...), possibly vinegared beets (I'll share the recipe if I end up making it - its a symbolic dish for Ukrainians, with the red symbolizing the blood of Christ, and the vinegar and usually horseradish symbolizing the bitterness of the death Jesus faced), and for a starch we'll have Potato bread stuffing - I'll use this recipe as a base - instead of poultry seasoning, I'll likely use a lot of sage and a little summer savory, little minced onion, etc (check out more details on how I've made my dressing in the past). No paska this year though, no time! (Here's the recipe my family's used for decades). And no koubassa either :( you have to hunt in this city for decent stuff, we don't have a large Eastern European community like Montreal or Toronto. Although we are getting more ethnic cuisine from other cultures, slowly over time, which is great!

Just a side note: I love SOAR (which is where the stuffing base recipe came from) - for SO many years in the early days of the Internet, that was THE place for online recipes. They don't show up high in the search engines these days, but there are a TON of great recipes there (and not a lot of repeats of the same ones over and over that you find on ALL the sites, this site was before those days!), be sure to take some time to look around! The ethnic foods section was especially amazing, you just didn't have access to these recipes unless you were brought up with them - it was really inspiring!

So, that'll be Easter supper here in Halifax - hope you have a great Easter supper celebration wherever you are! Christos Voskrese!

Sunday, April 01, 2012

Speaking of bees - amazing bee evolution in Japanese bees!

Speaking of bees, bees in another part of the world have come up with an AMAZING defence mechanism against their worst enemy, the very agressive giant Asian Hornet. Their stingers can't pierce its tough exoskeleton, so they devised a "hot defensive bee ball" - they all get together in a swarm around the invader, and beat their wings until they cook the hornet to death inside the ball, while remaining unharmed themselves!!!!

AMAZING... Read more here.