Coconut Pancake Review

Book Reviews, Cooking

First off, I must say, I am not a super big pancake gal. I am a bit picky on my pancakes. I like them thin and crispy. I am also not a fan of maple syrup, never have been. While flipping through Gordon Ramsay’s Home Cooking cookbook, I came across a recipe for Coconut Pancakes with Mango Slices and Lime Syrup. The picture looked good so I thought I’d give them a try.

The recipe makes about 16 small pancakes. I was just making these for myself, so I cut the recipe in half and then in half again. It made about 4 – 5 pancakes this way, which was the perfect amount for my appetite. While I followed the pancake recipe, I did not use Chef Ramsay’s toppings of mango slices and lime syrup. Sorry Chef. I would probably be thrown out of the kitchen for this move, however I made the bold move of using my own toppings. I chose to top the pancakes with honey and chopped almonds. I would have used macadamia nuts as the topping of choice, however almonds were what was on hand.

The pancakes came together easily and I did add a mixture of coconut milk and water to thin the batter a bit. Chef Ramsay did say that water or coconut milk could be added to the batter if it was too thick after its fifteen minute rest. I preferred to add both.

The pancakes cooked beautifully in my cast iron skillet heated with canola oil. I cooked them for about two minutes on each side at a medium heat. After removing them from the skillet, I drizzled them with honey and sprinkled the nuts on top. They had nice crispy edges and were light and lovely. Oh my! I devoured these pancakes. They were the best pancakes I have had in a long time, perhaps ever. If not a huge fan of pancakes, give this recipe a try anyway. They are sure to change your mind about pancakes.

As always, Happy Cooking!

Why Do I Keep Stepping on Scorpions?

life

I got up in the middle of the night and felt something under my foot. Since I have stepped on scorpions in the house before, I had my suspisions. I turned on the light. I was correct in the assumption. EEEEEEK!!!!

This is maybe the third time I have stepped on a scorpion. Most times, these things seem to (luckily) be dead (or maybe just playing dead). This one, however, was not. It did not move for a very long time, which was a good thing, as I needed to round-up someone at midnight to help me get rid of it.

My husband was the first person I went to, however, he was sound asleep and not to be waken. Drat! On to my son, who was still awake. My son seems to be the one who winds up helping me in catching animals/insects in the house. Remember when the lizard got inside? (Check-out my post…https://anotherdaywithjulie.home.blog/2020/05/04/friday-was-not-just-another-day-with-julie/) In any case, we were at it again. This time, I dug into the recycle bin for a yogurt container. My son got the yogurt container over the scorpion and then slid a piece of cardstock underneath. I taped the cardstock to the container with a little artist’s tape. My son flipped it over and took it outside.

Needless to say, I did not sleep very well directly after all this excitement. I checked under the sheets before getting in as an added bit of precaution. My foot felt wierd even though I did not get stung. Today, I checked out the internet on scorpions and their stingers. Should not have done that as they can give you all sorts of symptoms and it is more information than I really want to know. I will just be glad it didn’t sting me and that we caught it.

As always, Be Careful Where You Step in the Dark!

Street Skating Competitions – Tokyo Summer Olympics 2021

life

Well, did you catch the street skating competitions at the Tokyo Olympics? I have come to the conclusion that I will never qualify for the olympics. There are several reasons for this.

Of course the biggest reason I will never skate in the olympics is that I was a late starter to the sport. Having said that, I already feel like I won my gold medal when I learned to cruise on my board. A huge accomplishment for me. The next reason I will never skate in the olympics is that I can not do tricks (nor do I want to, to be quite honest).

The street skating at the olympics was amazing. The tricks, in my opinion, seemed a bit dangerous. Every time a skater’s board hit the rail I was like, ‘Does their mother know they’re doing this!?!’. And then there were the falls. Yes, even qualifying olympic skaters fall. When I saw them go down and summersault, I think I held my breath until they got up. One skater was limping afterward, but most just went on like nothing happened. I guess they are used to taking a fall. My goal is not to fall at all, as I don’t want to break anything.

Of course, I was cheering on Team USA. However, I also caught a glimpse of the finals and was wowed by Kelvin Hoefler from Brazil. He did a trick where the nose of his board hit the rail and then he twisted so the other end of the board hit the rail all in the same trick. I was like “Wow! That is amazing!” (There is a name for that trick, probably a fakie something or other.) So Kelvin had a fan from the US as well.

Maybe I should be a skating talent scout. As Kelvin took the Silver in the men’s division, I must have a nose for talent. Way to go Kelvin Hoefler! Team USA’s Jagger Eaton, who also impressed my with his fakie nose grinds, took home the Bronze. Way to go Team USA! Of course, Japan’s Yuto Horigome cleaned up with the Gold medal.

For the women’s skate, Japan also took the Gold Medal as well as the Bronze Medal. Thirteen year old (yes you read that correctly- thirteen year old) Momiji Nishiya took home the Gold. Japan’s Funa Nakayama the Bronze. Brazil’s Rayssa Leal took home the Silver. Team USA’s Alexis Sablone came in 4th place.

If you missed the competition, youtube is bound to have some videos for you to catch-up with. The park skating is still to come. We shall see if Japan and Brazil do as well in the park competition.

As always, Happy Skating!

Summer Olympics 2021 – Skateboarding

life

It’s finally here! Skateboarding competitions at the Tokyo Summer 2021 Olympics. As a newbie/oldie skateboarder myself, I am interested in watching this new competition.

First off, there will be two types of skateboarding competitions to watch. One is street, the other is park. The park skateboarders will have 45 seconds to impress the judges performing their tricks, skating in the deep concrete bowls. They will have three attempts at their best score. The street skateboarders will be skating on an “urban” course made up of stairs, benches, planters, rails, etc. that will simulate the terrain of the average street skater. They have to skate the course two different ways, are timed just like the park skaters, and have tricks as well. Oh boy!

At last, there is no competition for newbie/oldies, such as myself, who are just proud to be doing kick turns and cruising around. So, I will continue to enjoy my laid-back skating and cheer on the competitors. I am especially interested in my fellow street skaters’ competitions. Go Team U.S.A.!

The Men’s Street competition is on July 25th, the women’s street on July 26th. Women’s park will be on August 4th and Men’s park on August 5th.

The U.S. Olympic Team competing in park are: Jordyn Barratt, Cory Juneau, Heimana Reynolds, Bryce Wettstein, Zion Wright and Brighton Zeuner. The U.S. Olympic Team competing in street are: Mariah Duran, Jagger Eaton, Jake Ilardi, Nyjah Huston, Alexis Sablone and Alana Smith. Good-luck everyone!

As always, Happy Skating!

Steel Cut Oats

Cooking

I normally enjoy a bowl of old fashioned oats for breakfast. Trying to be a bit healthier, I recently added steel cut oats to my breakfast repertoire. But what is the difference?

Old fashioned oats take less time to cook. They take a total of three minutes on the stove top. Nice! Who doesn’t have three minutes to spare in the morning? The reason for the quick cook time is that the oats are steamed and flattened when processing. This process does away with the bran and other nutrients that take longer to absorb water when cooking.

Steel cut oats take 15 to 20 minutes on the stove top. Oh, well that is a bit longer, isn’t it. Why do the steel oats take longer to cook? It has to do with the processing of the oats. The steel cut oats are made by chopping hulled oat grains into small pieces with a steel blade, hence the name – steel cut. This allows the oats to retain bran which needs more time to absorb the water when cooking.

Steel cut oats, while creamy, are chewy and hardier than the old fashioned oats. They also have a nutty texture that reminds me of eating bulgar, but creamier than bulgar. By the way, steel cut oats are also known as Scottish or Irish oats.

My take on steel cut oats…It’s a thumbs up from me. I like the texture. I like the bonus nutrients. I do not even mind the extra time. I have gotten used to putting them on the stove before I start fixing my other breakfast items. Oh yes, I have quite a spread for breakfast. I think it may be my favorite meal of the day.

The Potatoe Plants Have Flowers

gardening

A quick update on our potatoe plants. Today, as I was trimming away some of the tomatoe vines in the garden (that were overtaking things), I discovered flowers on the potatoe plants. A very good sign I should think.

The flowers were a pale shade of purple with yellow centers. Who knew potatoe plants could be so lovely? I am getting more excited every day as I tend to the plants. They are growing quite tall now and I am crossing my fingers that the potatoes underground are maturing as well.

Who knows, maybe if this potatoe thing works out, I’ll start a potatoe farm in Idaho.

As always, Happy Gardening!

Peanuts and Potatoes

gardening

This year we are trying to grow peanuts and potatoes in the garden, both of which are new to our garden. Having never grown these before, we can only hope for the best. Both seem to be thriving as of present.

I have posted about our peanut plants before. Compared to my earlier posts, the difference is amazing. The plants are growing and look very healthy and happy. I am just crossing my fingers that the peanuts are doing their thing under the soil as that is where they grow and I can not see what they are up to.

Peanut Plants

Potatoes are something I love to eat. I am hoping to be able to get a home grown baked potatoe out of this crop. Initially, I left some store bought potatoes on the counter to sprout. These were then planted in the garden. One important thing I forgot to do was tell the other gardener in the family, my husband, that the potatoes had been planted. I should have put up a marker, but alas that would have been too simple. So, thinking weeds were growing in the garden, my husband tried to pull a couple and then realized what I had done and put them back. They must be hardy little guys because this uprooting did not seem to faze them at all. The plants look wonderful and are green with life. As with the peanut plants, the potatoes grow under ground so I am again crossing my fingers that all is well.

Potatoe Plants

I will be sure to post what happens with the crops when they are time to harvest. Stayed tuned.

As always, Happy Gardening!

Maigret vs. Maigret

movie review

George Simeon’s murder/mystery novels were turned into movies. They are set in 1950’s Paris. Period pieces, of course I would be interested.

I checked-out the complete Maigret dvd series starring Rowan Atkinson from the library. I was hooked. My husband and I watched the videos and I wanted more Maigret, however, that was all. Then, I found Maigret movies starring another actor, Michael Gambon. We were back in business. But how did they compare?

I recall Rowan Atkinson as Mr. Bean. His goofiness and his funny little car But there is more to Rowan Atkinson, the actor, than meets the eye. He shows another dimension to his acting skills in his portraial as chief inspector Maigret. This very serious, likable, detective and his charming wife, Madame Maigret, played by Lucy Cohu had me glued to the screen. By the time the serious was over, Rowan Atkinson was Maigret to me.

I was not familiar with Michael Gambon until we watched him star in Maigret, although he is a famous actor in his own right. I must say, to be honest, I was not as captured by Gambon’s rendition of Maigret. His detectives were also not as appealing to me, except for Lucas, played by Geoffrey Hutchings. I thought that his wife, Madame Maigret, played by Ciaran Madden, came across too harsh. Having said that, I still enjoyed the movies.

Would I have felt differently had I seen Gambon’s version of Maigret first? Maybe, but I really do not think so. There were a couple of movies with the same titles played on both versions and I preferred the ones on Atkinson’s dvd. Why? Not only because I liked the characters, but I also felt the story was easier to follow. I felt lost in a couple of movies featuring Gambon. The story was not explained as well. My husband agreed with me on this point. This was a script problem not an acting problem. I felt the cast from the series starring Rowan Atkinson was more likable all around. The costumes were also more interesting to me as well.

So, if choosing a Maigret series to watch, I would recommend the one starring Rowin Atkinson. However, everyone has there own taste. Do like I did and watch them all. It’s always fun to compare and there are more titles and different titles on the Gambon set.

As always, Happy Viewing!

Using a Darning Loom

Projects

I came across this cute little darning loom to mend holes in socks. It can also be used to make patches in jeans or sweaters. The below picture shows my progress darning a sock.

The Katrinkles darning loom is very simple to use. As with everything these days, there are youtube videos to help guide the beginner. Basically, a disk is slipped inside the sock/garment to be darned. On the outside, the loom part is added and secured with a hair tie. Next the warp threads are put in by wrapping the threads around the teeth and taking a small stitch at the bottom of each row, past the hole that is being mending. Weaving is down under/over as always but at the end of each row the needle grabs a bit of the sock/garmet to secure.

I found the Kartinkles darning loom easy to use and the finish product turneded out nice and neat. Since I like weaving, it was a nice little something to do. The socks turned out much nicer than with needle and thread. I am planning on using it to repair some hand knitted socks that I made. Since I went to the effort of making them, I hate to have to toss them.

Since I bought my loom, (which was very recently), the company now carries them in different sizes. It also looks as though one can buy an extension piece if they already own a loom.

As always, Happy Mending!

You Get What You Get

gardening

The vegetables are starting to produce in the garden. I just came in from picking our first ‘big’ harvest. As the saying goes, ‘You get what you get and you don’t throw a fit’.

We have one beautiful zucchini with more coming, two banana peppers, and four green beans. The one that I really find amusing is the four green beans. Four green beans are hardly enough for one person let alone a family of four At least everyone will get one tonight. HA! HA! I am laughing as I write this. Paired with the zucchini it will be fine, really.

The tomatoe plants look amazing and are taller than me. The starts of little green tomatoes can just be seen. Soon we will be up to our eyeballs in tomatoes. The peanut plants are growing, a good sign I’m sure. Although, since they grow under ground, I have no way to know. We also have lettuce coming in slowly. Hopefully the tomatoes and lettuce will coordinate their arrival so I can toss a salad.

As always, Happy Gardening!