Thursday, July 14, 2011

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Monday, December 13, 2010

... and the Mystery of the Persimmon Cupcakes

Persimmons aren't a rare sight in our grocery stores, but I'm sure everybody who sees them wonders why they're there. Nobody I've met knows what they taste like or what to do with them, so I'm not sure where the demand for them comes from.

I bought a persimmon last week and I also had no idea what I was going to do with it. It's my second time buying one. The first time was about a year ago and the persimmon I got was of the short, stout variety known as a Fuyu. I eyeballed it for a few days and finally just dug into it with a spoon. I wouldn't say it tasted bad by any means, but I also didn't finish it. It just wasn't a really noteworthy experience, ya know? It tasted sort of like a mild, sweet melon, but with a much softer texture.

This year's annual persimmon experiment was different though. I bought a persimmon that was larger and longer -- kind of shaped like a heart (a real blood-pumping one, not the cutesy cartoon kind). Wikipedia tells me this is a Hachiya persimmon, which the label on the fruit confirmed . Apparently Hachiya persimmon's aren't nearly as good for eating straight, so that idea was nixed right off the bat. In fact, when they are unripe, they are said to taste downright nasty and may even mess up your insides. No thanks!

Wanting do avoid this, I sought suggestions for cooking with them. I learned that it's best to let them ripen for several days (I waited about a week) until they are soft and squishable. When I cut it open, it had the texture of jelly on the inside, but it was surprisingly not as awful looking as I imagined it might be. This was not like the first time I opened a passion fruit, which look way less sexy on the inside than the name would suggest -- unless you're turned on by piles of alien boogers, anyway.

Long story short, I pureed the pulp of the fruit and used it to make cupcakes! The recipe I used called for pumpkin pie spice (I made my own blend) and orange juice, but it mostly ended up tasting like pumpkin pie cupcakes. And yes, I'd even say they taste pretty great, although I can't honestly pick out the flavour of the persimmon in there.

In conclusion, I still have no idea what a persimmon tastes like, but these cupcakes are delicious. This is the recipe I used: Clicky Mclinkenstein over here. I ran out of pulp for the frosting, so I made a super-simple brown butter icing instead.

Back to it

I stopped writing here for a while because the only thing that still interested me was making fun of people on Yahoo Answers. And then a friend showed me that others are already doing this full-time, such as on this tumblr: Yahoo Answers? How could I compete?

I decided to hang up my keyboard (because that's a thing that people do?) and follow the tumblr for a while. But I quickly got bored because the only thing they seem to find funny over there is the trolls writing about poop and "sperms." Too many legit morons are getting off scot-free, if you ask me. Like Lady Rebecca over here:

She doesn't seem to realize that half of the planet doesn't experience winter in December.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Fun with Kijiji: more than meets the eye

You really have to wonder sometimes about what goes on behind the scenes of a Kijiji ad. Every once in a while you see one that's obviously got a story to tell. Like this one:

Let's see... A Sony Surround Sound system costs anywhere in the range of $200 to $400, and yet this person is selling a brand new system for $75 because they can't figure out how to set it up? And they lost the box and receipt? And they feel they need 3 decimal places for the price?

I guess this means they also lost the manual, since any new piece of electronics comes with one. And they must have a really messy house or something...

Person 1: "Boy, this looks complicated. Honey, have you seen the manual for the brand new surround sound system I just bought?"
Person 2: "Nope!"
Person 1: "Could you check the box?"
Person 2: "I have no idea where the box went. I think I lost it."
Person 1: "You mean you threw it out? How do you lose a gigantic box like that?"
Person 2: "I don't know. I looked for it and now it's gone."
Person 1: "Fuck it. I'm putting this on Kijiji for less than half of what I paid for it and I shall be happy to do so."

Dear Person 1: You have internet access -- you can use it to look up information about products you've lost the manual for and not have to take a $200 loss on future purchases. Also, it's not nice to steal.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

For a few glasses more

Yahoo Answers... I just can't look away... Today, the question of "8 glasses of water a day: should you or shouldn't you?" remains super popular. I lost my last battle, but we'll see how it goes this time. Once again, someone is asking if they really need to drink this much water, and does it have to be pure water? Does juice count?

I think you already know where I stand on this, but user Mickey Rainheart contributes this answer:
Sweet tea and Juice are good but water is actually essential because our bodies need the moisture from water because we are mostly made up of water. Water improves your health incredibly from the way you look to the way you feel :)

You should drink water alot especially now that its summer...If you don't like the taste get vitamin flavored water or those little packets of flavoring people add to there crystal light or something
This makes me wonder: what does Mickey think happens to water when it is turned into tea? What does she mean when she says we need the moisture from water? Does juice not contain moisture? I don't think there's any question that between water and water with sugar/tea in it, the one without the sugar in it is probably better for you -- but does that entirely negate the hydrating qualities of the water that nevertheless constitutes 99% of the drink? In what way is sweet tea or juice different from the sweetened, flavoured vitamin water she recommends? Is it because it has "water" in the name?

I wonder if Mickey's body knows this information. How does it know the difference between water you flavoured yourself and water that came from the factory with flavouring already in it? As far as I know, my body tends to funnel all of this stuff through the same processing plant -- I don't have different pipes for plain water and flavoured water. What happens if I eat a packet of sugar and chase it with a glass of water? Will they cancel each other out? Will I time travel?

Now I'm thirsty... Which according to Yahoo means I'm at death's door, so I better go take care of that.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Fun with Yahoo Answers: The Questions Edition

Often with Yahoo Answers, the questions themselves aren't as interesting as the way in which they are asked. This one starts off very broad and then suddenly gets very specific:

"What are some celebrities who dress preppy and are like alexa chung?"

First, name some things (I notice they used "what" instead of "who" as a pronoun for celebrities -- I think that's a telling sign) that fit into this broad category. Oh, and make sure they are in some way like this other very specific person or thing. It's kind of like if I asked, "Who are some actors that you like and are Will Smith?"

A lot of people also just don't know how to phrase questions. I've seen many that don't ask a question, but rather state the thing they want to know more about. YA automatically adds the question marks, I believe:

"Complicated situation!?"
"I want to dye my hair...?"

This guy's got the right idea, but still doesn't get the wording quite right:

"How to clean a tongue?"

At least the basic info is there in the question.

My most despised question style, however, comes from people who ignore the "question" and "more info" fields in the question form and just start typing their explanation directly into the space where the main question is supposed to go. As a result, you don't even get to know what the question is about until you open it. Like this:

"I'm a little confused right now...?"

Yes. Yes, you are. Next question!

"Do you think...?"

Sometimes. Next!

At first glance, this next person actually seems to have worded their question correctly, but it's a trick, because they also have a second question:

"Can you help me with a decorating question?"

I would, but I've just exhausted myself answering your first question.