Wednesday, July 1, 2015

I think too much about trivial things

Like accents in movies. We've all experienced this. You're watching a movie that is set in a country other than the home country of the actors. If the movie is in English, one of three things will happen: 
1. The actor will execute the accent flawlessly, like a voice chameleon, making us struggle to remember where Meryl Streep was actually born. 
2. The actor will do a terrible job, affecting an accent so horrendous it will distract us the entire time. 
 3. Like Tom Cruise in Valkyrie, the actor won't even worry about it, while everyone else works on their varyingly good and bad accents. 
Now I'm going to make a controversial assessment: Tom Cruise was right. (I just put words together in a way no one ever has before!) 

But seriously, in Germany in the 1940s, what is the likelihood that Nazis would be speaking to each other in German-accented English? Zero. They'd be speaking German. With a Salzburg accent. Or a Munich accent. Or whatever. 

My point is, if you're going to ignore the language, why worry about the accent? If Americans are playing Germans, let them speak American. OR make everyone speak with accents. (I'm looking at you, Tom.) 

But if they decide to go with accents, they can only do the flawless kind. Get a vocal coach if you have to, but make it happen! 

This has been trivial concerns with Kimber. 

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Make way for ducklings! (And tourists)

I'm spending the week in Boston for work, and today I was completely free, so I spent the day touring the city with some dear friends. In true tourist fashion, we bought tickets for the hop-on/hop-off CityView tour bus. It was a very comfortable bus with very pleasant guides, and I learned a lot. I'm not going to recount all I learned, but if you're ever in Boston, I recommend it. 

There were many highlights of the day, but one of my favorite pictures is from this memorial in Boston Common. 

These little guys are from the classic children's book Make Way for Ducklings. They get dressed up for various Boston events. This time of year, they're wearing their Easter hats! I love them. 

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Facts About Flour

Or just one fact about flour:

Old flour makes cruddy sugar cookies. 

Here's how I came to this realization. For Christmas, I made my boyfriend the cutest sugar cookies. 

Aren't they adorable? I made them late at night on Christmas Eve Eve so that he wouldn't know about them until Christmas. I painstakingly rolled out the dough on Christmas Eve morning and had the darnedest time getting that green sugar to stick. As your eyes will tell you, they looked great when they were done. 

But they tasted like crap. Or, more accurately, they tasted like flour. I blamed the ratios in the sugar cookie recipe, which was part of the problem, but it wasn't the whole problem. As I discovered when I made waffles a few weeks later, our flour was old, and therefore, not good. 

Last night, I made new cookies. (There is no picture because they were significantly less twee.) I used new, unbleached all-purpose flour (and a less flour-heavy recipe), and they turned out great. 

I realize this may not be the discovery of the century, but it certainly made me think twice about using whatever ingredients are lying around. 

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Farewell, 2013

Has another year ended already? Around this time last year, I made a New Year's resolution to blog more. I clearly failed on that point. I'm going to let you in on a little secret, dear readers: time flies when you have a grown-up job. Here's another secret: when your day consists of working, eating, and watching tv, you have fewer interesting things to write about. 

Admittedly, my job is good fodder for stories, but it would be bad form to discuss applicants on the internet. If you're interested in the life of an admissions counselor, check out Admissions Problems. Maybe in the New Year I should resolve to make an effort to do more fun things. 

I'll let you know how that goes...

Monday, August 26, 2013

My New-Found Talent

This evening I had cause to do something I have never attempted to do in my life: replace a burnt out headlight. Over the weekend, my boyfriend discovered that his driver's side headlight had gone out. Lest he break the law, he rushed to buy a new bulb, assuming that it couldn't be too hard to replace himself.

At his behest, I found a video on YouTube detailing how to replace said bulb. We watched it together, noting the intricacies of sticking your fingers into things.* Given my long spider fingers, he commented that I might have to help him with it.

What ensued was some Total Kimber Domination. I fixed the crap out of that headlight! I really enjoyed doing it, and I have a new skill! I also learned about the fuse boxes inside of cars and that pulling the fuse for my radio did not fix my CD player problem, but that's a conversation for another day.

My takeaway from tonight's adventure is that I have an innate ability to fix cars and/or I love following directions. I think it's the latter. As a child, my favorite part of playing with Legos was always the complex instructions, as opposed to making up my own things. Then again, once you've learned the fundamentals, there's no end to what you can do! Next stop: rebuilding the engine for no particular reason!**

Fixing a car in a dress = Classy! 

*That sounds vaguely gross. Sorry.
** No, not really. But I might tackle that CD player thing!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Chicken Korma = Nostalgia

Way back when I lived in Edinburgh, one of my favorite things was the chicken korma at Tikka Mahal. I have never had a korma as good as they made there, but in an attempt to capture a taste of those times, I've found and modified this korma recipe. I can't speak to its authenticity, but it's pretty tasty. It's super involved but worth the work in the end.

Chicken Korma

¼ c cashew halves
¼ c boiling water
3 cloves garlic
1 Tbsp pure├ęd ginger
3 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 large onion, minced 
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp chili pepper
½ tsp ground cinnamon 
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp curry powder
4 skinless chicken breasts, diced 
¼ c tomato sauce
1 c chicken broth
½ c coconut milk
½ c plain yogurt
2 tsp cornstarch, mixed with equal parts water

1. Place cashews in a small bowl, and pour the boiling water over nuts. Set aside for 15 to 20 minutes. 
2. Place garlic and ginger in food processor and blend until smooth; set aside.
3. Heat oil in wok over medium heat. 
4. Stir in onion, and cook until soft, about 3 to 5 minutes. 
5. Mix in garlic/ginger paste, and season with coriander, garam masala, cumin, turmeric, brown sugar, curry powder, and chili powder. 
6. Stir in chicken, and cook for about 5 minutes. 
7. Pour in tomato sauce and chicken broth. 
8. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
9. Meanwhile, place the cashews, along with the water in which they were soaked, and the cream and yogurt into food processor. Process until smooth.
10. Stir the cashew mixture into the chicken and onions. 
11. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
12. Stir in the cornstarch mixture, and continue cooking for 1 to 2 minutes.
13. Serve over basmati rice. 

Monday, July 29, 2013

Pineapple Casserole

Tonight I made one of my favorite recipes, which I'd like to share with you, Dear Reader: Pineapple Casserole. The first time I share this dish with people, their reaction is usually skeptical. And yet, pineapple pizza is scientifically proven to be the best kind of pizza, so clearly pineapple and cheese belong together. This recipe is not only delicious but also super easy!

1 20-oz can pineapple chunks in juice
2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp sugar
1 ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 ½ (approx. 25) crushed Ritz crackers
3 Tbsp melted butter

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. 
2. Drain pineapple juice, reserving 3 tablespoons. 
3. Arrange pineapple on the bottom of a 1½-quart casserole dish. 
4. Combine flour and sugar and sprinkle over pineapple. 
5. Drizzle pineapple juice over top. 
6. Cover with cheddar cheese. 
7. Combine crackers and butter and cover the cheese. 
8. Baked, covered for 15 minutes. 
9. Uncover and bake another 10 minutes.