February 21, 2007

No updates, really...

Blah. Been busy. No updates.

Work:
Been doing an acting managerial gig. Lotsa administrative stuff, very little tech stuff. I enjoy it as a change from my regular job, but I'm not certain if I'd like to do it permanently if it were offered to me. There's also a lot of after-hours unpaid overtime involved, which I don't mind, but it does cut into relaxation time. I also wrote a test for another position, but it's just for a pool of potential hires, so who knows if anything will come of it. Totally over-studied.

Fun:
Well, not a lot, as I was really concentrating on studying. Last weekend was the first weekend after writing the competition. I visited with the next door neighbors, who are really nice. I made some really nice cinnamon buns and my neighbor made a very yummy light cheesecake topped with peaches. I got to take some home with me and ate it over the next few days.

I also attended a family birthday party. It's been a while since I've seen them, and of COURSE they all mentioned how much weight I've gained. Heh, brutal but honest, I guess. I made an elaborate, 4 layer chocolate cake, layered with raspberry whipped cream, surrounded by chocolate buttercream and topped with glossy ganache. Unfortunately, the cake was a bit dry :-(

People still seemed to like it, but if it weren't for the brutal honesty (see above) I'd think they were just being polite. Of the cakes there, mine was the most eaten - but given that the other 2 cakes were storebought/no-flour cakes, that's not saying much. I threw 1/2 of my piece of cake out rather than eating it.

Posted by JAY at 11:04 PM | Comments (0)

February 24, 2007

Baked Custard

Custard is really easy! Just 10 minutes to make and everything is very divisible so that you can easily adjust the recipe to make the amount you want. I didn't have any ramekins, so I just used coffee cups. I replaced about 1/2 cup of milk with whipping cream and put in an extra yolk for every egg. The thing is, the mix has to be thick enough to suspend the egg throughout and rich enough to not curdle.

For every 2 custards (usually I make 6):
1 egg (got extra yolks hanging around? toss em in too!)
2 TBS sugar (or more, if you'd like a sweeter custard, around 1/2 C per 3 eggs)
1 cup whole milk (higher fat, the better! mix some cream in, if you have any)
1/2 tsp vanilla

Revised for 6 custards:
4 eggs
1/4 + 1/8 C sugar
1.5 tbs vanilla extract
3 C milk/cream, warm (fill to just over 4 cups total volume)

Preheat oven to 300F
Simmer a large pot of water
Slowly whisk the ingredients together in the order they appear.
Strain the mixture into small heatproof bowls (ramekins)
Put a large dish that can fit all the custards in the oven.
Arrange the custards in the dish and pour the hot water around them.

Bake for about 1/2 hours or until a knife inserted comes out clean.
Alternatively, the internal temperature should be around 160-165F

Posted by JAY at 04:59 PM | Comments (0)

Superclock

I bought this Honeywell PCR325W Weather Projection Clock as a promotion from Dell ($45/free shipping). It's actually pretty awesome!

It can set date and time automatically from radio signals.
It can measure temperature indoors and remotely outdoors with the included sensor.
It has a barometer indicating air pressure trends and predicts the weather.

The projector projects the time and outside temperature on the ceiling. The projection is not offensively bright, but very crisp. The characters on the ceiling are about a hand high. Sadly, this isn't quite large enough for me to see without my glasses on. Argh. Stupid eyes.

Also, it has a gradually increasing alarm, which is nice - my current alarm is so loud that it really jolts me awake unless I remember to cover it with a book. It also has an option to alarm early if the temperature is below a set value.

All in all, pretty neat!

Posted by JAY at 09:12 PM | Comments (0)