Semi-Success: Slow-Roasted Pork Shoulder

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Slow Roasted Pork Shoulder with Fennel, Garlic, and Red Chilis

Slow-roasted Pork Shoulder adapted by Will Owens from the LA Times...maybe use something other than fennel?

Followed up with Gravy Recipe from TheKitchn. Not to self: it's okay to throw away some fat/drippings. One does not need a bucket of pork gravy, lol.

Mortar & Pestle & Fennel Seed
Seared 6lbs of Pork Shoulder
Slow Roasted Pork Shoulder - Partway through cooking
Spice Pocket in Pork Shoulder
Pork Sandwich

How To Bustle a Wedding Dress: Customizable Paper Doll Edition

Friday, October 21, 2016

If you've got a dress with a train, you're probably going to need to bustle it up to keep people from stepping on it all night long. However, it's near impossible to bustle the train on your own, so you're going to need a helping hand armed with know-how to accomplish this tremendous feat. Because Adobe Illustrator solves all my problems, I drew the instructions up in a speedy 4-step process in Adobe Illustrator.
Example of 'How to Over Bustle the Wedding Dress'
I had difficulty finding useful images on the Internet, so I also created this paper doll version as a transparent PNG so you can customize your own bustling instructions in MS Paint or some similar image editing software. Just copy/paste the bits and pieces you need and move them around to where you need them. Then hand out to mothers of the bride as needed.

WikiHow has a lovely little illustrated page to disambiguate the three types of bustling: regular/traditional, over, and French/under.

California is good for plants

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Jade and Burro's Tail

The burro's tail of BYOV Propagating Succulents Tutorial fame had seen better days prior to the California move. Now look at it! 'Just goes to show you that sitting in the California sunshine is all you need to achieve that perfect healthy glow.

I don't appear to have a photo of the jade plant in its former glory, but a few months prior to the big move the cat knocked over the jade plant and it never fully recovered. So I pulled some of the healthier/loose branches of the larger trunk and replanted them in a smaller container. So when the time came to leave stuff behind the struggling jade trunk was left on an apartment stoop with a "free" sign, leaving us with just these two tiny babies on the dashboard for the cross country road trip:

In the Car
I've maintained some version of the jade plant for the past !!16!! years. 'Ever since high school biology class. I have to keep two strands of the jade plant at any given time in order to keep it going. Stuff happens and it's always good to have a back-up. It's about time I propagate a second version of this guy again.

Living Room
A struggling jade plant in my first apartment in Pittsburgh (2011).
Jade Plant Mealy Bug Infestation
Treating the jade plant for a mealy bug infestation in Pittsburgh (2011), that would eventually be the downfall of this branch of the original plant.
3215 Powelton Philadelphia Apartment: Living Room
The jade plant in Philly (2007).
Two Burro's Tails
Burro's tail trim and propagate in Pittsburgh (2015).
Daylight Bulb, Auto White Balance
Burro's tail at purchase in Pittsburgh (2013).
Burro's Tail Trimming
Now (2016).
Jade Plant
Now (2016).

Blue Apron: Week 40

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Seared Pork Chops & Plum Salsa with Corn, Kale & Farro Salad
Not sure why, but the Blue Apron farro salads are always fantastic. This Seared Pork Chops & Plum Salsa with Corn, Kale & Farro Salad was no exception. And the plum salsa may sound like it won't work, but it does. Why? How? Who knows!

Lemongrass Chicken Burgers with Hoisin Mayo & Roasted Potato Wedges
The Lemongrass Chicken Burgers with Hoisin Mayo & Roasted Potato Wedges were really nice as well. I think it was the hoisin mayo and all that ginger in the chicken patties!

Tinkerbell Pepper Quesadillas with Cherry Tomato Salsa, Lime Crema & Sunny Side-Up Eggs
We also really liked the Blue Apron Tinkerbell Pepper Quesadillas with Cherry Tomato Salsa, Lime Crema & Sunny Side-Up Eggs. It's hard to go wrong with cheese and tortilla, though.

Hence, a Chore Chart (Printable)

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Chore Chart in Action
We've been having difficulty tracking and splitting the regular chores that need to happen frequently. Hence, a chore chart is born!

I ordered custom 1" magnets from etsy/CuteCraftsEtc because it was pretty much the best price, short of purchasing my own button maker. I used Adobe Photoshop to cut each of my images into circles (using an overlay of a smaller circle, so I could see where the focal area would be, and what would become edges). I also used Photoshop to fill in any blank areas for photos that weren't perfectly centered to my focal area. The template below shows both the outer-cutting edge (black) and the inner focal area (red). The Duquesne Incline photo didn't fully fill out the outer circle, so I filled in with a matching black background.
Chore Chart Magnet Templates

The printable chore chart below is something I drew up in Adobe Illustrator, but I've removed all the text so the world can customize it. Just add initials and chores. Does it get any better than that?! ;)

Chore Chart Printable
The top grid flips back and forth between 'I' and 'J', so those responsibilities are split evenly. Those boxes can fit 1" magnets. The middle box is to count the number of meals each person contributes to. We aim for three per week, but since we often do our own things for dinner this isn't always achieved. The person who spearheaded the meal with all the leftovers tends to be the person stuck eating most of the leftovers ;)

Chore Chart in Action
I like the use of photo magnets on a chore chart, as it works as a reminder of what you're working away for. However, we were short two photo magnets for this chore chart design so I took some old magnets and gave them a makeover with some teensy tinsy on-theme fabric yoyos. You can come by cute magnets through many paths.

Success: Refried Beans

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Refried Mayocoba Beans

Back onto BEANS. This time, I followed my usual oven-bean-baking procedure, but then refried them a la the Rancho Gordo method. Basically, sautee onions, add cooked beans and bean water, and then mash until desired consistency (i.e., when masher reveals pan underneath). Not too tricky, but the recipe is missing all its photos, so I've filled in a few here:

Refried Mayocoba Beans Refried Mayocoba Beans
Refried Mayocoba Beans Refried Mayocoba Beans
mash mash mash
Refried Mayocoba Beans Refried Mayocoba Beans
Refried Mayocoba Beans

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