Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

Posts Tagged ‘easy’

America’s Test Kitchen & Chinese Junk

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, September 11, 2021

Occasionally, I read the numerous emails sent out by “America’s Test Kitchen.”

And when I write “numerous,” I mean NUMEROUS. They’re practically bordering on SPAM.

And, they almost always want you to buy some cheap, Fabriqué en Chien Chine (tr. “Made in China,” but, it might as well be “Made in Dog”) junk. Hmm… Chinese junk. Seems there is an historical watercraft called — interestingly enough — a “Chinese junk.”

China, Miscellaneous Scenes: Junks near Ningpo
Creator: Fong, Ali
Subject: Hartung’s Photo Shop
Local number: SIA RU007263 [SIA2008-2923]
RU 7263 – Arthur de Carle Sowerby Papers, 1904-1954 and undated, Smithsonian Institution Archives
Place: Ningbo Zhuanqu (China)
Repository: Smithsonian Institution Archives


And ATK’s latest flop is… testing silicon spatulas.

Yes, you read that correctly – silicon spatulas. It must’ve been a VERY slow day week in the test kitchen.

While I once found them informative, they’ve been slipping. And one thing that gripes me about ATK is that many of their “recommendations” aren’t worth a hot hoot in Hades. As an example, consider a venerable, almost ubiquitous, household kitchen appliance… the blender.

Not too long ago, ATK, as they usually do, produced a video comparing various brands of the kitchen appliance. That one, of course, happened to be about blenders. Their hands-down, long-time winner was the Vitamix 5200, priced at $449… BUT! Made in Cleveland, Ohio, and FULLY guaranteed — everything about it (i.e., “a motor blender base and any containers purchased together”) will be repaired, or replaced AT NO EXTRA COST — for 7 years if ANY part fails “due to a defect in material or workmanship or as a result of normal wear and tear from ordinary household use.” FINALLY! FINEST QUALITY MADE IN AMERICA!

ATK’s “next best” choice model was the Breville brand Hemisphere Control model, priced around $200 – Made in China, and with only a limited, one year guarantee.

While the site and accompanying video(s) show excerpts from their “tests,” and the host gives an adequate description of the “tests” and their staff’s findings – the advantages and shortcomings of each of them – one thing they fall grievously short on is… 1.) CLEANING, and; 2.) LONG TERM DURABILITY TESTING.

Granted, ATK conjures up some “torture” tests that most cooks won’t come close to performing, such as plunging a searing hot skillet into an ice water bath, or banging the thing on a concrete block… just to see what would happen. In industry parlance, that’s called “destructive testing,” meaning that the piece, or thing, being tested is likely to be damaged, or destroyed in the process.

I happen to own a couple Breville brand products, one of them being the no-longer-manufactured Hemisphere model blender, and the other one being the still-manufactured Breville brand Barista Express model espresso machine with integrated grinder.

The TOTAL purchase price for BOTH items – shipping + tax included – was around $1000+/-.

Now, to give kudos to the Australian company, their design team Read the rest of this entry »

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Recipe: Simple Mexican-themed Meal

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, August 24, 2021

A simple dish like pinto beans can quickly and easily become a hearty, tasty, complex-flavored dish with the addition of a few ingredients. Seen here, are the beans with all extra ingredients added, just before cooking in the pressure cooker. When pressure cooking beans, it’s NOT necessary to soak them. Simply rinse them off, throw ’em in the pot, fasten the lid, and cook away! They’re ready in a jiffy! How long’s a “jiffy”? About 15-20 minutes +/- depending upon how well you like ’em cooked. No more soaking overnight baloney!

Beans and cornbread.

There you have it!

How much more simple could it be, eh?

And honestly, that’s a meal unto itself.

If you wanted, you could add some rice to it, either separately, or mixed in.

But, we’ll just concentrate on the two, for now.

So… here’s what you’ll need for the beans & cornbread.

Are you ready!?!

• Pinto beans
• Cornmeal
• eggs
• buttermilk and/or soured milk
• canned corn
• ground beef
• oil/lard
• LARGE can crushed/diced tomatoes
• salt
• black pepper
• Badia brand “Complete” seasoning
• bacon
• baking powder
• oregano
• paprika
• cumin
• garlic – fresh, or powder
• onion (player’s choice – red, white, yellow, sweet)
• red pepper flakes and/or cayenne
• cheese – mozzarella, cheddar, Colby, or PepperJack
• 10-inch iron skillet
• coffee
• cinnamon
• coriander
• smoke flavoring/seasoning (Colgin brand ONLY)
• Worcestershire sauce (Lea & Perrins ONLY)
• Pressure cooker

NOTE: Milk can be clabbered/curdled using a small amount of vinegar or lemon juice (both are acid). Soured milk should not be discarded, and can be used in cooking, in lieu of buttermilk or milk, and can be added to buttermilk.

If it seems like a lot of ingredients… IT IS!
And, it’s WELL WORTH IT!
Besides… any cook worth their salt will use numerous spices, herbs, and seasonings… because NOBODY BUT NOBODY enjoys bland food. Read the rest of this entry »

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Better-than-Boston Baked Beans Recipe

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, August 6, 2021

Summer’ll be winding down soon enough, and you should have enjoyed at least ONE backyard barbecue in that time.

And just in the case you haven’t… here’s a recipe that’ll get you going!

The recipe is Complete!

With FREE “Easy-Peasy Instructions”!!

Better-than-Boston
Baked Beans

1 – 2 pounds navy beans (dry)
1 – 2 onions (red/yellow/white)
½ pound bacon
½ pound ground pork sausage
2 Tablespoons crushed garlic Read the rest of this entry »

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The Alabama Attorney General’s Office Has IDIOTS Working There

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, April 8, 2021

This matter was just brought to my attention.

The figure 0.3% is 3/10ths of 1% (three tenths of one percent) – NOT “three one-thousandths” as they incorrectly wrote.

Any grade school child should be able to tell the difference.

Note the emboldened text highlighted in purple on the lower portion of the page.

And examine the dates…

NO ONE has caught that gross error since the time it was written – 2 years 4 months 20 days
or 28 months 20 days
or 124 weeks 3 days
or 871 calendar days

and updated –
1 year 7 months 26 days
or 19 months 26 days
or 86 weeks 2 days
or 604 calendar days.

If the folks working in that office are that dimwitted, or lazy – take your pick – what does that say about the rest of the state government?

Remember: Steve Marshall’s incompetency is precisely why former Governor Bentley wanted him in that office, in order to avoid prosecution.

The history of it all is utterly Machiavelian – Steve Marshall fired Matt Hart, a former Federal Prosecutor who was a tenaciously aggressive and fearsome Special Prosecutor for the State, who Read the rest of this entry »

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A Truly DELICIOUS Pot Pie! Beef Bourguignonne style!

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, August 7, 2018

“Nothing says loving like something from the oven.”
anonymous

To the idea of pot pies, some folks say things like, “You know, I’ve never liked pot pies, but probably because it was always store bought.”

-or-

“He HATES pot pies. I LOVE them.”

And then, after looking at the ingredients I used, they say this…

“That recipe looks scrumptious.”

-and-

“I’ll have to try this recipe. He might eat it if I make it.”

Understand this: Most all recipes – and that means 99.99% – have their origin in someone’s kitchen – not in a giant factory vat or laboratory test tube.

Also understand this: Recipes are Read the rest of this entry »

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Build The Wall: A Simple How-To Primer

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, January 8, 2017

On June 16, 2015, when Donald Trump announced his candidacy for United States President, he said in part, “I would build a great wall, and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me, and I’ll build them very inexpensively. I will build a great, great wall on our southern border. And I will have Mexico pay for that wall.”

Trump has estimated construction costs could range from $8-12 Billion, that it should be be made of precast concrete, rise 35 to 40 feet, or 50 feet, or higher, and that it doesn’t need to span the entire distance of the border, but only half because of natural barriers.

Accurate official Cost Estimates to build The Wall are sketchy, and a 2009 report by the Congressional Research Service  found that the challenges include “costs versus benefits, location, design, environmental impact, potential diplomatic ramifications, and the costs of acquiring the land needed for construction.”

Projected costs vary widely, and the report stated that:

The Corps of Engineers study predicted that the costs of constructing a double layer fence consisting of primary fencing and Sandia fencing would range from $1.2 million to $1.3 million a mile, excluding the costs of land acquisition. The Corps of Engineers also predicted that the 25-year life cycle cost of the fence would range from $16.4 million to $70 million per mile depending on the amount of damage sustained by the fencing.
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has estimated that border fencing would cost $3 million a mile to construct and that maintenance would total roughly 15% of the overall project costs per year.
According to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), the border fencing constructed by the end of FY2007 (using mostly the Corps of Engineers and the National Guard to construct the fencing) cost about $2.8 million a mile. The fencing constructed in FY2008, using mostly private constructors, cost about $5.1 million a mile.

In “Testimony Before the Subcommittee on Border and Maritime Security, Committee on Homeland Security, House of Representatives” entitled “SOUTHWEST BORDER SECURITY: Additional Actions Needed to Assess Resource Deployment and Progress; Statement of Rebecca Gambler, Director, Homeland Security and Justice” published Tuesday, March 1, 2016, the U.S. Government Accountability Office stated that:

“In addition, with regard to fencing and other tactical infrastructure, CBP reported that from fiscal year 2005 through May 2015, the total miles of vehicle and pedestrian fencing along the nearly 2,000-mile U.S.-Mexico border increased from approximately 120 miles to 652 miles. With the completion of the new fencing and other tactical infrastructure, DHS is now responsible for maintaining this infrastructure including repairing breached sections of fencing.”

See also: Highlights of GAO-16-465T, a testimony before the Subcommittee on Border and Maritime Security, Committee on Homeland Security, House of Representatives.

And make no mistake, Public Law 109–367 enacted by the 109th Congress, also known as the “Secure Fence Act of 2006” requires that “the Secretary of Homeland Security shall provide for least 2 layers of reinforced fencing, the installation of additional physical barriers, roads, lighting, cameras, and sensors…” at specified locations. But in typical Congressional fashion, the law was changed in 2008, and the fence requirements contained in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2008, still mandates the construction of a fence covering “not less than 700 miles” of the border, but eliminated the requirement that the fence be double-layered. According to “Remarks by Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson: “Border Security in the 21st Century” – As Delivered,” “in Fiscal Year 2000 we had 10 miles of secondary fence along the southwest border; today we have 36.3 miles of secondary fence.”

Citing a U.S./Mexico Trade Deficit of $50 Billion in 2014, and a $54 Billion Trade Deficit for the first 11 months of 2015, Trump has proposed reinstating tariffs on Mexican goods in violation of the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Trump said, “When they say Mexico can’t pay for the wall, I say of course they can. We have a trade deficit with Mexico that’s unbelievably big. … It’s billions and billions of dollars — far more than what we’re talking about for the wall.”

His claim that “I will have Mexico pay for that wall,” would ostensibly be done by reinstating tariffs, otherwise known as “taxes” on goods “Hecho en Mexico.”

However, there is another potential manner in which he could “have Mexico pay for that wall,” which would be to Read the rest of this entry »

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It’s A Dog’s Life… And They Called It ‘Puppy Love’

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, July 4, 2015

So, as it turns out, I bought these as a treat for my puppy. And what do you think she did? Read on to find out!

So, as it turns out, I bought these as a treat for my puppy. And what do you think she did? Read on to find out!

So…

a few days ago, as a treat,

I bought pig ears at a Kroger grocery store for Queenie, my 11 month old mixed-breed (sometimes aka “Heinz 57” – as in 57 different varieties) puppy.

Last night I Read the rest of this entry »

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Easy #Bacon Wrapped #Chicken #Tailgating #Recipe

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, September 12, 2014

Sweet Baby Chicken Bacon Wraps are a tasty combination of sweet and spicy.

With only four ingredients, or more, it’s a quick, easy, simple, affordable and satisfying heavy hors d’oeuvre to make for a crowd. Unless you’re cooking for the Los Angeles Rams.

As we march our way into the holiday season Hades, this is sure to be an outstanding addition to your next party or family get together. Even tailgating!

Sweet Chicken Bacon Wraps

Yield: 12-15 wraps

Ingredients: Read the rest of this entry »

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Be nice to me… or else!

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, March 6, 2014

It certainly seems that there’s no shortage of opinion on FaceBook. Eminem quote

Recently, I had seen this posted on a friend’s page, and remarked upon it. Whether or not Eminem said it, I am uncertain. However, the sentiment expressed was what caught my attention.

Since we’re now in Read the rest of this entry »

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Sparsebundle problems with Apple’s Time Machine & Time Capsule? Here’s an easy fix!

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Time Capsule offers automatic backup for your Mac. And it's a full-featured 802.11n wireless base station with simultaneous dual-band support.

Time Capsule offers automatic backup for your Mac. And it’s a full-featured 802.11n Wi-Fi base station with simultaneous dual-band support in the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands simultaneously. It delivers great performance and range. And it’s easy to set up from your iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, or Mac.

If you’re like me, enjoying the benefits of Apple’s Time Capsule and Time Machine are among the best, of the many wonderful things Apple has done with computer programming.

However, like all things electronic, or computing, not everything always works 100% properly, 100% of the time.

And, while Apple’s OSX is as good, robust and simple an operating system as it is, it’s not without problems.

One of the problems that occurs is with TimeCapsule’s sparsebundles.

The sparsebundle is the name given to the disk image file that is the backup.

Instead of a single big file, a sparse bundle is a bundle (directory) containing Read the rest of this entry »

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SECURITY-MakingThingsEasyToReadToPreventAdvertisingSniffers

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, April 6, 2010

R ec ent l yI sen t am ess a ge toa f ri end o fm ine w ho mwo r ks ina c ad emi a in com p ut ern e tw ork i ng ser v ic es. I nt hem e ss age I wr ote t oh imI e xp lai n ed tha t Iw asu s in gse …Continue…

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