Thursday, April 12, 2012

Take 9 - Blame it on the papers, magazines and DVDs

Take 9

Blame it on the papers, the magazines and the DVDs !

When I lived in Canada, I often fumed at how expensive it was for us Canadians to purchase  or subscribe to American newspaper and magazines or to simply buy a copy of said newspaper or magazine. In Vancouver and way back in Montreal, I would occasionally splurge and buy the Sunday edition of the New York Times. The cost ? $9.50 Can $. Yes, for one paper. The San Francisco Chronicle was approximately the same price. A subscription to a magazine often meant a huge difference between the cost to U.S. residents and Canadian residents.  Ah, the cost of culture ! Well now that problem is no longer. We now have the opposite one. Here papers and magazines are just too cheap. Almost dirt cheap. So inexpensive that I have gone nuts. Really ....  We now have a 7-day subscription to the San Jose Mercury News, as well as the Sunday edition of the New York Times. This also gives  us full access to the electronic edition but there is nothing like holding the paper. Hearing its rustling.... Smelling the ink..... But, I digress. Additionally,  I have subscriptions to The New Yorker (published weekly), O magazine, Real Simple, Architectural Digest, Saveur, and surely I am forgetting some others. I also have a few Canadian magazines subscriptions. Oh and David has a few of his own too. When all is said and done and read, that is a whole lot of reading, I agree..... but after exercising and walking the pooch,doing housework and cooking what else is there to do? The holder of an H4 visa cannot be gainfully employed so this is my fun way of keeping busy and informed until I have Taylor trained as a Therapy Dog.  I have also recently been tempted to look look into volunteering for a Cityof San Jose  Rose Garden in great need of some tlc. I do have some experience with roses but that story is for another day. Stay tuned ....
On a totally different topic and shade of ink you will notice, and to give you a microscopic look into our lives, my husband and I love tv. However, many years ago we gave up on trying to watch series week after week,  religiously, because something always happened to prevent us from keeping up and then we would have a ton of them waiting on our pvr or tapes and the pressure got to be too much and unhealthy. Heck, this is supposed to be a lesurely activity meant to be relaxing. Now we tend to watch the trends and then decide to delve heart and soul into one series or another,catching up with the seasons through Verizon (video-on-demand) or buying the incredibly inexpensive dvds at Target or elsewhere. We are doing basically the same thing as previously but without the pressure and the worry of losing one episode or more.  All this to say that right now, we are into Mad Men, deep into Season 3.With Season 5 now airing, we started with the Pilot and made our way through the first 3 Seasons, at our pace.  Wow ! Very interesting but what a bunch of unhappy and dissatisfied individuals. Despite that, we just can't get enough of Don, Roger, Joan, Peggy, and the rest of the gang. We have to restrain ourselves from watching more than two episodes per night. Another series we just can't get enough of also available in reruns and on Verizon on demand but which is totally different from the first one is, The Big Bang Theory. By the same creators asTtwo and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory (TBBT) is lol funny, super clever and has an immense rerun power. Although very nerdy, it is also very now and can become anyone's favorite after just watching a couple of episodes.  Everyone sees a little bit of one's self in Sheldon, my favorite character. Not every tv  series is worth investing so much time in, but some truly qualify as time well wasted. Now if you decide to relax and watch the tube, you may want to indulge in a wonderful piece of cake. The recipe follows ......

Orange Pound Cake

15 Tbsp. softened unsalted butter
3 Tbsp. milk
3 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups sifted cake flour
3/4 cup sugar
3/3 tsp. baking powder
1 Tbsp. grated orange zest
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 6-cup loaf pan with 1 Tbsp. of butter and set aside. Pour milk,eggs,and vanilla in a bowl and beat until well combined; set aside.

Sift together flour, sugar and baking powder into the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a whisk. Add zest, beating on medium speed, then add remaining 13 Tbsp. of softened butter, 1 Tbsp. at a time, waiting until each is completely incorporated before adding more.

Slowly add milk-egg mixture, beating constantly, until batter is just mixed together. Pour into prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, 55-65 minutes or more, depending on your oven. (Lightly cover cake with a piece of foil during baking if the cake begins to get too brown.) Allow cake to cool on a rack for 5 minutes, then un-mold. Using a skewer, poke holes all over the top of the cake.

Make glaze by combining sugar and orange juice in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Reduce glaze by half. Brush some of the warm glaze over the top of the cake, reapplying until cake is saturated.

Yields 8 servings
Bon Appetit !