A few weekends back at a birthday party, a friend of mine was talking about “The Man from Earth”. He was strongly recommending that I watch it, but would not say anything about the plot. All he asked was if I was religious… so moving forward, I finally got myself to watch the movie and I must say this is one of the best movies I have seen in the last year. I definitely don’t want to reveal the plot either, but I guess I can tell you it’s not sci-fi as the title may sound like but more of a narrative/ conversational movie.
Digging a little deeper (i.e. Wikipedia :P) I found out that the writer & cult figure Jeromy Bixby completed the screenplay on his deathbed, by narrating it to his son. Then it was given to director Richard Schenkman to finish it in a $200,000 budget, believable given that the whole thing happens in a living room with a fireplace. Even more interesting was that the producer of this movie, Eric D. Wilkinson had publicly thanked the BitTorrent enthusiasts who saw this film for taking it farther than the traditional scope would have allowed.
Bacon, sweet peppers – yellow, orange & red, cream cheese, tabasco.
Cut the peppers in half, fill with cheese, wrap with half a bacon slice (cut horizontally), bake at 375 degrees for 12 mins. Drizzle with Tabasco and serve with beer. Oh did I mention, I was supposed to have bought jalapeño peppers and goofed it up by buying sweet peppers, so had to salvage it with some Tabasco. The better alternative to this is to just use jalapeños, cream cheese and bacon. Simple and heart clogging, wholesome junk food!
I was excited when I began reading Wired’s piece on strange canned foods. But I have to tell you, some of them are not all that strange, in fact I’d like to taste a few, one I have already tasted.
We live in a time when chicken feet, pig ears or Cordyceps Sinensis (aka Chinese caterpillar fungus) are no more culinary shockers, so I was disappointed that Wired had not include some of the more weirder stuff. In all fairness, I’d like to bring to light Mopani worms, snail eggs, gold & pearl lollipops. While Mopani worms are fairly common in Southern Africa, snail eggs common in Europe, the gold and pearl lollipops are just pretentious aphrodisiacs.
I know we are running out of reasons to charge extra for a cup of tea, but “Monkey picked tea“? Turns out monkeys were trained to climb steep mountains and pick wild tea from there. This product comes from China at about $40 for 57g and if any of you gets to brew this monkey tea, I am not saying invite me, but leave a note on how you liked it. Or you could just invite me!
I had no idea the section reserved for Mario Batali in the Serious Eats website was called “Mario Unclogged” as in he is not wearing his clogs. Glad they put a picture of those little orange clogs, it’d have never struck me otherwise.
Saturday morning was spent at the Farmers’ Market looking, scrutinizing, sampling, talking & laughing. The spoils of the day ranged from maitake mushrooms, mixed germinated beans, raw feta cheese to great tasting free range, pasture raised eggs from Eatwell Farms. I learnt that raw feta cheese can be preserved by storing them in brine or whey, not that I am going to do it, but it’s good to know.
The mixed germinated beans were fun, I cooked it with my nutty flavored organic rice with red wine vinegar – very simple and healthy. I paired this with some saucy maitake. I am trying to break away from letting spices overpower the food which usually is the case with Indian, Thai or Mexican food and consequently killing the natural flavor of vegetables or meat. My new style is to use very few ingredients, with techniques like boiling, steaming, baking & broiling. So if basic ingredients is all I’ve got then I’d better go for the best eggs, asparagus, carrots, cheese you name it.
While Ms. Teen South Carolina was insightful in her explanation (now at close to 20 million views on YouTube) regarding why a 5th of Americans can’t locate the US on a world map, on your part how geo savvy do you think you are? You can test yourself here & find answers here. As an upshot, some of these facts can make for a good conversation starter at your holiday party.
Here’s a sampler:
1. What is the only U.S. state to allow its residents to cast absentee ballots from outer space?
2. The International Date Line runs through only one continent. Which one?
3. True or false: When crossing the border from China to Afghanistan you must set your watch back 3 1/2 hours.
Answers: 1. Texas 2. Antartica & 3. True. Virtually all of China is on Beijing time.