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It is now 12:55 PM on Thursday, October 30th, 2014 in Vancouver, WA.

The Waffle Endeavor

posted on Saturday, June 22nd, 2013, at night by

Mindy and I have heated discussions about what we can have in the kitchen. We’ve argued about the beefy KitchenAid Mixers (not yet), panini grills (living on borrowed time), toasters (finally found a good one), microwaves (never again), blenders (replaced with an immersion blender), ice cream makers (inconclusive), sous vides (for science!), dish ware (heath and stackable restaurant supply glassware), mortars (granite, soon to be replaced with basalt molcajete), cookware (all-clad and seasoned cast-iron), and lots of other things too.

Waffle-makers would be one of these. For as long as we’ve had these arguments, I’ve been exceedingly against getting a waffle-maker. They are big and unreliably electric, and our kitchen is small and I hate shit that breaks (cuz they don’t make anything like they used to). The idea was floated that there existed cast-iron waffle irons that would not have the same drawbacks as electric waffle makers. I was able to find only one waffle iron (#1100 Old Fashioned) on the entire internet! However, no one that I could find had ever tried one on an electric stove-top like we have, nor could I find any record of someone trying to season such a beast. Whatever! We got one and did both.

The first step was seasoning, and fortunately the internet has an opinion on seasoning cast-iron. It involves flaxseed oil and about six treatments. Normally, this wouldn’t be so bad, but these instructions require drying almost all of the oil off before polymerizing in the oven. It was not so fun on the craggy surface of the waffle iron. Still, I’ll be damned if it didn’t work! It was so non-stick, that the waffles still came off even when I forgot to oil it first!Tyler Grinning and Making Waffles

The next step was choosing a waffle recipe (I’ve never made waffles before, or pancakes, or most anything else you can eat). I just so happen to be tremendously obsessed with bacteria and fungus and sprouting beans and in general using life to prepare my food for me. So naturally (pun-intended), I went for a fermented waffle recipe. Turns out, waffles made without yeast are the brown ales of breakfast pastries—they’ve got a hole where flavor should be. Fermented waffles, on the other hand, have an aftertaste that’s right up there with the finest yeasty lagers.

I’ve always been weak on execution, and last weekend was no exception. It was tricky to get the heat-output of the electric stove right, the timing right, and being unable to get both sides properly cooked made me feel like a busted toaster. Fortunately, the seasoning performed admirably, and the recipe itself tasted great.Tyler Displaying a Fresh Waffle

But this weekend, though! My technique improved and the waffles were much better—the best I’ve ever tasted! At last, I have a way to burn through the gallon of maple syrup I unreasonably purchased! I’m thinking I might re-season one of our cast-iron skillets and try a similar recipe with pancakes. It feels weird to be this excited about breakfast…

Tubing with the family.

posted on Friday, January 4th, 2013, around noon by

After getting tons and tons of snow we were getting a little cabin fever and decided to all go up to Mount Hood for some tubing. Here’s some photos from that day.

Best. 30th Birthday Gift. Ever.

posted on Monday, November 21st, 2011, at night by

To celebrate the end of my 30th rotation around the sun, I invited some friends to Crawfish King in the International District last Saturday. I’d never been there before, but a friend from work whose culinary taste and skill I admire recommended it. I’ve been to Crab Pot and had a good time, but this place makes Crab Pot look like Sizzler. Anyway, we got crawfish and sauce all over ourselves and it was fantastic.Fantasy Statue

Even before we ordered food, my friends had perched a cardboard box of unusual size upon the table. After navigating (with assistance) the styrofoam puzzle within, an incredible form emerged: two chicks at the same time.

The statue was purchased from a strange store in Leavenworth that appears to specialize almost exclusively in naughty statues. Our favorite is a busty pirate named “Trixie”, but she is also life-sized and requires some creative engineering to fit on a coffee table. My drinking buddies understandably opted for the table-top version.

I’m sure Mindy is reevaluating our relationship accordingly. ^^

Leavenworth is for Beer

posted on Sunday, November 13th, 2011, in the afternoon by

More than a month ago, DSC_0309 Tyler, some friends, and I went to the first weekend of Leavenworth’s Oktoberfest. Most places in the US have one weekend of festivities, but not Leavenworth. They have three weekends because they are just that much greater than the rest of the US.

Almost anything goes at this Oktoberfest, too. It’s not like the boring Seattle one where people just get drunk and pee in the open. No, people here take it the next level. They wear lederhosen and dirndls (both fake and authentic), or random costumes like beer kegs and pirates. The more “subdued” people stick to funky hats that may or may not have anything to do with Oktoberfest, beer, or Germany. Tyler's Funky Hat Case in point: Tyler picked up a “rice picker” hat to wear.

The six of us (Elaine, Chris, Vlad, and Lam—whom I think the Amicks have all met by now) had a lot of fun. We originally had two rooms in the same hotel, but Elaine and Chris had a bunch of crazy army guys in the room next to theirs and couldn’t sleep. So we carried their mattress complete with sheets and covers into our ridiculously huge room the second night and the six of us had one giant slumber party. Our ridiculously huge room also had a ridiculously spacious bathroom and an awesome balcony that overlooked the main street. That awesome balcony was most definitely the best spot in all of Leavenworth to watch the Saturday Oktoberfest parade that goes along Front Street and ends at the mayor’s Ceremonial Keg Tapping.

There is talk of going again next year, maybe the week after we go to the real Oktoberfest in Munich.

Links to More Delicious Foodstuffs

posted on Tuesday, September 13th, 2011, in the afternoon by

Bobby Flay Quesadilla

  1. Obscene double-decker, grilled zucchini and goat cheese quesadillas topped with tomato-basil salsa from some dude named Bobby Flay.
  2. The infamous cherry pizza. The awesome magazine that published this recipe folded in June, so I do have the original in case the link ever breaks.
  3. And a new favorite of ours: Quinoa and Avocado Salad with dried fruit, almonds, and a lemony vinaigrette.

Delicious Food

posted on Monday, August 22nd, 2011, at night by

This site needs an update, so here are some shots of delicious foods I made in the past two weeks.

Stuffed Zucchini
Stuffed zucchini using the zukes we swiped from Jennifer’s garden a few weeks back. The recipe is Zucchini Stuffed with Feta and Dill. It’s definitely a recipe for zucchini lovers. But my all-time favorite zucchini recipe is Zucchini alla Scapece, which is basically lightly fried zucchini slices marinated in balsamic and mint.

Cherry Pie
I also made this Cherry Pie using the awesome pie cherries the Amick parents sent home with us. I drained the cherry juice into another vessel for a day in the fridge while they thawed, and then made this pie using a teeny-tiny star cookie cutter I had laying around. I added some orange zest, but the orange we had was super-fragrant and overpowered the pie. I later mixed one part cherry juice to one part standard orange juice and drank that, which was super tasty.

Both pictures feature our insanely awesome Heath plates. We started collecting a new set of plates because the old ones Tyler bought had really stupid bowls that were not good for eating soups on your lap (very important in this household with Movie Nights at least once a month), plus the matching plates were not oven safe. Since we don’t have a microwave, being oven safe is also a huge plus. I highly recommend Heath Ceramics if you have the extra cash to spare on plates that will last you a lifetime. They’ve been around since the ‘60s and aren’t going anywhere, so it’s also easy to add new plates as they break or you decide you need more. I also just scored an an awesome vintage salad bowl made by them, but that is for another food post.

to Prague

posted on Wednesday, April 13th, 2011, around noon by

I just got back from a quick weekend in Prague with my new roommate Johannes. We had an excellent time exploring sites like Prague Castle and Charles Bridge. I’ve got a bunch of photos from the trip on my flickr, just click on the link below.

Dieter’s flickr: Prague

Recent Boston Visit

posted on Friday, March 25th, 2011, around noon by

Your mom and I recently visited her mother and brothers outside Boston. Had a great time. Visited Kinnebunkport, Maine where we spent our honeymoon nite. Here’s a picture of the Captain Lord Mansion. HPIM1672 We went inside and it turns out the owners we met in 1978 were still there! We were one of their first customers. I had lobster roll for lunch and your Mom and grandmother had fish and shrimp. We bought lobsters and cooked them at your grandmother’s house.
We also visited our house in Harvard, MA. Here’s a picture – pretty modern in those days. It was on about 2 acres of mosquito swamp.

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Mason and Mary Lynn came up from Delaware and we visited Cape Cod.

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Met up with Jonathan, Sanford, Raquel, Jonathan Jr., Anita and McKensie. Had a great brunch at a Brazillian restaurant where Jonathan has done some work. Here’s a picture of some cranberry bogs on the Cape.  Oh yeah, we had more lobster rolls at Logan airport on the way out!

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My Adventurous Weekend

posted on Sunday, February 27th, 2011, in the afternoon by

I started off my Saturday by running down to Hauptbanhof to pick up my train ticket to Paris and London for spring break. Since it was the first somewhat spring like day in a long time I took the opportunity to visit the Tierpark Hellabrunn (zoo). It was pretty fun, even before entering the zoo I spotted a legit “organ grinder” lady, who was awesome even without a monkey on her shoulder. I got a picture of her but you’ll have to wait until I get the film developed. Once inside the zoo I spent quite a bit of time just staring at the chimpanzees watching their eerily human like movements. Other than that I saw some good old american bison, european wolves, and little curled up red pandas just to name a few.

The next day, Sunday I woke up early to meet up with a group going cross-country skiing in Bad Tölz. We ended up skiing for roughly 18 km with a break halfway through for lunch at this amazing Bavarian restaurant in a little town just off the trail. We all had amazing meals and I had my first Radler which tasted pretty interesting, a little too sweet for me though.

 

Penguins

Roosters on a Fence Cross-country Skiing Craggy Tree the group Jesus it's cold

Mom’s New Lamp

posted on Friday, February 25th, 2011, around noon by

HPIM1664 HPIM1668 HPIM1669 Here’s the “Diogenes” lamp we first saw at Winfried’s home in Germany. Pretty nice, it has an adjustable 50W halogen reading light (with the handle) and a 300W halogen light out the top.