butter, the old fashioned way

February 23, 2011

so, my good friend aneil has launched his culinarily inspired blog entitled “make your own butter“.  as the name suggests, aneil’s blog is an exploration of the world of food from a do-it-yourself, back-to-basics sort of mind set.

to date, he’s got recipes for homemade butter, sauerkraut and a traditional punjabi dish called subzi.  with only three posts so far, not only has he already lived up to his blog’s name, but also its byline: “a blog about punjabi cooking, home-made dairy products, mason jars and so on.”

experimenting with homemade food, like making his own butter, yogurt and sourdough starter (for sourdough bread), is something i’ve always admired in aneil.  knowing that, it’ll be very interesting to see what he publishes online.  whatever he chooses to share with us, i’m sure it will be unique and enlightening – even if we only ever read about making our own butter, rather than having rely on our (probably very rusty!) churning skills or whatever the process requires these days (aneil suggests a food processor).


♥ u

February 14, 2011

damien hirst, love you (detail), 1994-5

ken lum, untitled (cushionpainting), 1990

marcel duchamp, fountain, 1917

sherrie levine, fountain (after marcel duchamp), 1991

edgar degas, young spartans exercising, 1860

attila richard lukacs, the young spartans challenge the boys to fight, 1988

Theatre Review

September 20, 2010

My review of Stuart Lemoine’s short play, The Exquisite Hour, which just closed at the 2010 Vancouver International Fringe Festival can be read here, at Sad Mag.

Sad Mag is a local (Vancouver), independent quarterly arts and culture magazine.


June 15, 2010

so, i’ve been baking a lot lately, as i’ve had a bit of time on my hands, and cakes have been my main area of interest.

ina garten is known for her decadent, yet simple, recipes – and her cakes are no exception.  i’ve been making her “lemon yogurt cake” for years, but just recently tested out her “beatty’s chocolate cake” recipe.  the chocolate cake is super rich, with strong hints of coffee, and a delicious buttercream icing, and made the perfect birthday cake for a friend of mine.  i took both recipes from ina’s cookbook, “barefoot contessa at home”.

just last night, i decided to give another cake recipe of hers a go – her “carrot and pineapple cake”.  it calls for a pound of shredded carrot, and a whole lot of vegetable oil as the main fat, and it’s really worth the extravagance.  i happened to have the carrots already in my fridge (a great excuse to use up the last pound of a 2 pound bag!) and the only ingredient i had to run out and purchase was the cream cheese for the ridiculously amazing icing (which calls for 3/4 of a pound of cream cheese, 1/2 a pound of butter and a full pound of icing sugar!)

it turned out perfectly!  i omitted the raisins and the pineapple, as some of those who will eat the cake are not particular fans, but i kept in the walnuts and it really made little difference.  the beauty of the cake is in the batter and the shredded carrot which adds a great texture and flavour.

i shredded the carrot using my food processor with the grater attachment – this makes the process a whole lot simpler and faster.

as far as baking cakes goes, this one is a relative breeze, as the oil, eggs and sugar just get beat together without the fuss that goes into the usual creaming of butter, sugar and eggs.  the trick is to sift the flour so that it’s light and well-aerated, before adding it to the wet ingredients.  and not over mixing the batter before adding the carrot.  it’s also essential to sift the icing sugar before adding it to the butter and cream cheese, as this removes all the clumps of sugar and make the finished icing nice and smooth.

in the end, ina’s “carrot and pineapple cake” recipe delivers a dense and rich cake that will not disappoint!  it’s almost worth it for the icing, alone!


June 2, 2010

My friend just moved to Sweden and I acquired his portable turntable.  Vinyl records have such a great sound to them.  There’s a distinctness to the musical sounds on vinyl that is compressed on digital files.  I inherited a few discs from my friend, but I’ve only purchased two records on my own, so far.


“Yellow House” by Grizzly Bear

“Michigan!” by Sufjan Stevens

Favourite inherited album:

Erroll Garner (Self titled album) on Columbia Records CL 535


December 7, 2009

check out the links on the side of my blog – there’s great stuff like:

the sartorialist – a photo/fashion blog with pics of fashionable people, usually right off the street, like this —>

radio lab – listen to this awesome radio program online, investigates everything from theoretical conceptions of time to why we laugh to stochasticity

said the gramophone – music reviews plus downloadable (for a limited time) mp3’s of the songs – check out their list of the best songs of 2009 (very indie)

and there’s so many other interesting links! have fun!


wavves is a band.  they’re kinda popular right now, and here’s a link to a ridiculous interview (in the village voice) with the guy (his name’s also Nathan, but that’s where the similarities end, thankfully) behind the “magic”.  it’s either very profound (see pitchfork review), or profoundly very not (see hipster runoff).  probably the latter, although the music is kinda catchy in a noise-pop-rock-fun kinda way.