"...a spiteful or mentally deficient servant its a misfortune that might occur [to any institution]." (Gaudy Night)
* Yesterday the snow rolled in hard all day hard on an eastward wind from the lake. Unusual, that. It was really beautiful, especially as it floated on by nowhere near my warm dry feet.
* MORE AUSTERITY COOKIN FROM TANTE IMPECUNIA!
From the annals of more fussy housekeeping: I had a bunch of unavoidably expensive grocery-type things to buy I couldn't put off (tp, paper towels, Lactaid), and managed, even so, to buy 3/4 of my order on sale. 3/4!!! But even with that....TOTALLY SPENDY! Took my breath away. Hopelessly fucking spendy. So Kreative Kookin continues apace:
PUDDING. You can easily make pudding from scratch! Milk is the spendy ingredient here...the other stuff is almost always around, and not expensive (cornstarch, sugar....cocoa if it's chocklit). I did this last week, and found myself to my dismay falling right into the Pudding Trap of which I'm well aware but as usual with life, made no nevermind. Which is to say, pudding-making is a very old-fashioned activity in that you are directly rewarded for patience and sheer arm-power and punished pretty directly for the lack of it. You can never stop stirring, and, if you're making it with evaporated milk, not reg'lar, can't let it boil. It's really hard to just sit and stir for almost 10 minutes. Even with a risotto you get to put the spoon down.
So it was tasty pudding for a short while, until it firmed up into a one-pound jiggly cornstarch/papier-mache mold of the bowl it was in (I overcooked it, is the point). I will prevail though. Next up - SOY pudding? We Will See.
This week I also "invented" chipped beef on toast, kinda. A Welsh rarebit/chipped beef thing with a stock-based cheese sauce and lots of good lean leftover protein in it, including chili-rubbed pork tenderloin and some thin-cut ham that made it chippedbeefy. It was good though! Lasted four meals on barley, wheat toast, brown rice. I mean, shit on a shingle, as they'd say in the navy, yes? But still--good.
Stay tuned for many many recipes involving on-sale chicken stock. And barley. Barley-n-stock! Stock-n-barley! Barley-barley-barley-n-stock!
* A good diner: Nookies. As someone who is ever-grieving for my old local diner (it's still there! I just moved away), it has been soothing to slowly let some others in that have proved their worth. Nookies...it's good. And consistent. I think the name put me off for a long time. I got my itch for biscuits and gravy scratched this week after way too many months of longin', as part of a multi-course breakfast lunch...really fantastic on a cold day. (Yay diners.)
* Poor old Van Johnson died. I always had a fondness for him, despite his sweaty hopelessly hokey middle-brow country club humor haw haw haw mien...in some films. It's weird...there are some closeted actors you are all exasperated with about their closetedness, and I don't know why.
It's the Ellen DeGen*res phenom. I just couldn't get all worked up about her coming out of the closet, ever. Ooohhhh woo, please, scootch a few inches to the right and come out from behind that transparent curtain there that everyone can see you behind. It's almost like with some folks you have a sense they put themselves there, not the System. Except that could hardly be less true of old Van, who even married somebody (I think) that the studio found for him. Maybe it's because they're not as good actors? So you think they're not hiding as well?
This makes me sound like such a bitch. It's not the attitude I'd take knowing anybody one-on-one, it has to do with the relationships you're feel like you're roped into as a media consumer. I can't figure out why it's okay sometimes, and not others...and it doesn't have to do with "passing." I mean, I love Paul Lynde, I can buy Clifton Webb's obsession in Laura, I'm not exasperated at Rock Hudson, even in the most gay pantomime-y parts of his Doris films. I am content to be complicit, even without Hudson winking at the camera or without the movie making prescient nudges toward the topic. But with Van...I was like gah!! Come out, baby! Looks uncomfortable in there. Anyhow.
* Forget financial inflation, Hanukkah inflation continues apace...it was alarmingly front and center in the Holiday Issue of Marfa Stooart Living, par example. Soon we won't feel guilty about having a dominant Christian holiday at all! If we can just ratchet up those around it!