29 January 2013

Burma Book

Here's my current list of what we've tried from Naomi Duguid's book on Burma. I thought the Kachin carp curry was a little boring, although I didn't have the sawtooth/culantro and I'm willing to believe that makes a difference; and I'm going to have to try the fermented soybean paste again in a few months because it needed to sit and ferment in a warm place which I don't have in the winter.  They molded rather than fermented.

I still have at least 15-20 recipes that I want to try.  

Fried shallots page 24
Shallot oil page 24
Fried garlic 25
Garlic oil page 25
Chile oil page 24
Dried shrimp powder page 30
Toasted chickpea flour page 32
Chopped roasted peanuts page 35
Chile-garlic sauce page 36
Spinach and tomato salad page 44
Succulent grapefruit salad page 45
Long bean salad with peanuts page 50
Roasted eggplant salad page 56
Carrot salad page 62
Fish cake salad with cabbage page 70
Silky Shan soup page 94
Chickpea soup with lemongrass and ginger page 97
Okra shallot stir-fry page 102
Tamarind pumpkin curry page 103
Simmered cabbage, Shan style page 116
Eggplant delight page 120
Easy coriander tomato omelet page 121
Golden egg curry page 122
Paneer in tomato sauce page 124
Pale yellow Shan tofu page 126
Deep-fried Shan tofu page 128
Fish cakes and fish balls page 133
Fluffy lemongrass fish page 138
Kachin carp curry page 142
Fish stew with aromatics page 145
Chile-oil fish page 152
Chicken in tart garlic sauce page 162
Standout tomato chutney page 206
Everyday cabbage-shallot refresher page 220
Peanut and rice porridge page 234
Perfumed coconut rice page 237
Egg noodles with pork in coconut sauce page 248
Shan village khaut swe page 266
Mandalay noodles with chicken curry page 270
Deep forest monklets' sticky rice cake page 279

The Cutting Season

I like a lot of things about Attica Locke's books, but I just don't really like mysteries in general, and since that's a major part of her plots, it doesn't quite work for me.  But the characters are interesting and the issues are too, so I do read them.

18 January 2013

Confessions of a Prairie Bitch

This is the memoir of the actor (do you think it should be actress?) who played Nellie Oleson on Little House on the Prairie.  It's exactly what it should be.  And lots of fun to read. As you can guess from the title, this isn't your squeaky clean memoir.  But it's also not out to get anyone (except possibly her brother, but he deserves to be gotten), and it's honest, and it's funny.

I've finally decided that I'm going to have to shift gears with reading and stick with lighter stuff for a while.  I won't bore you with the reasons, but there it is.

10 January 2013

Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker

I finally had my camera and lots of birds around today when I was down by the river and managed to get this yellow-bellied sapsucker.  It's not a great shot, like usual, but it's definitely a sapsucker. 

It was a lovely and warm sunny morning today and there were many birds out.  Plenty of sparrows and robins and finches, but also some blue jays and maybe a hairy woodpecker and some cardinals.  There haven't been many birds out when I've gone out recently, so when I heard this woodpecker, I ran back to the house so I could get a photo.

03 January 2013

Shadow of Night

It feels like I spent the last six months trying to get through this book, even if it wasn't anywhere near that long.  In the first book of the trilogy it felt like the plot got lost sometimes in all the other stuff the author was trying to do, but this was one was far, far worse.  It felt like I caught only the faintest glimmers of the plot every so often.  I'm still not sure what the point of the book was, unless it's just about the relationship of the two main characters and I fear that really was the point. Their relationship was even more boring than the details about clothes, and that's saying something.  

So why did I finish?  It wasn't taxing at all, and that was nice over the holidays.  I kept hoping something like a plot would come together, although I was disappointed.  The author has some really interesting ideas, but she doesn't seem to write about them.  I'm not sure I'll give the last book a chance unless someone like Melissa tried it first and likes it.