Saturday, May 22, 2010

Reader Contest: The Cure For Hangover

Breakfast as Sam's Billiards!

Plenty of hot, fresh coffee. Chicken fried steak with country gravy, scrambled eggs, whole wheat toast and fruit instead of hash browns. (I have to think of my girlish figure don'tcha know?)

...and here's what the Flaming Chef looks like when he's feeling a bit wobbly:



Do any of you have sure-fire hangover cures? Leave your favorites in the comment thread and the best one will win a superglamorous mystery prize!

(Thanks to all my readers who would surely perish if I stopped being a self-absorbed chatterbox. Tell a friend about the Flaming Chef!)

Morning News 5/22/10

(Meatloaf, gratin potatoes and avocado/tomato salad for dinner last night. Dr. Snickerdoodle mixed some extra-strong cocktails, so The Flaming Chef is a bit hungover this morning. Keep it down will you?)

Happy Birthday Harvey! Milk would have been 80 years old today.

He handled Exxon Valdez so well, we thought we'd give him another shot. William Riley (among others) to investigate BP disaster.

Ronald Reagan is God. Phyllis Schlafly and Joseph McCarthy are merely demi-gods. Texas board votes to protect school children from reality.

He opens his mouth to switch feet. Rand Paul describes Obama Administration as "un-American."

Marc Acito Commemorates Eliza Doolittle Day on NPR. Head over there and give it a listen. Then sit down and compose a grammatically accurate sentence.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Caketastrophie! A Little Food Porn For You

My friend Molly made a cake the other day...

...which was more delicious than beautiful.

"A" for effort Molly! Thanks for letting me use your charming photo ; )

Without tooting my own horn too much, I would like to offer "Episode Four: Cakes" from the Flaming Chef's own cooking show "The Pleasure of Food" brought to you by Filmy Residue Productions.

For everyone who just wants to laugh, skip down and play "part 4" which contains all of our production bloopers. Come on, you know you want to...

I'll show you filling and finishing techniques for lemon cake, butter cake with chocolate icing, chocolate cake with mocha icing and chocolate cake with vanilla mousseline butter cream.

The whole show is 30 minutes long and broken down into 4 short, easy-to-digest segments.

Here's part 1:

Here's part 2:

Here's part 3:

Here's part 4 with all our delicious bloopers:

I hope you have enjoyed this glamorous foray into the marvelous world of...


Tell a friend about the Flaming Chef. If we can get enough people on board, I can start my own country and implement my "Mandatory Pastry Policy."

(Special thanks to Molly and Filmy Residue Productions.)

Morning News 5/21/10

 (Deep fried Mars bar and Snickers (medium sized) with vanilla ice cream and butterscotch sauce. Courtesy Donkeydude.)

Ja! German Parliament approves massive contribution to European economic stabilization plan.

Shocked! I Am Shocked! The NYT reveals that some famous chefs (gasp) smoke weed! I always had my suspicions about the origin of the deep-fried candy bar...

Pay No Attention To That Oil Leak Behind The Curtain! The Great and Powerful BP Has Spoken! Some "confusion" as to just how much oil is gushing into the gulf right now.

Meanwhile... Rand Paul thinks BP should be left to its own devices. (Really Mr. Paul? How are "market forces" going to deal with this ecological disaster?)

Take That! Senate passes some sort of financial overhaul thingy.

Whew! Student anti-bullying law introduced in Senate.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

True Story: Comfort Food

Cooking and writing have at least one thing in common. In both cases you have to know who your audience is.

Back in the early 90’s I volunteered at an AIDS hospice in Tacoma, Washington. I drove residents to medical appointments, did laundry, dispensed medications and cleaned up every substance that could come out of a human body.

It felt good to see to other people’s needs, but I wanted a chance to do something really personal.

I wanted a chance to use my skills.

So one night when the regular cook was busy I offered to make dinner for the residents, staff and volunteers.

My supervisor, Deanna, a kind woman in her sixties, raised an eyebrow as she asked, “Are you sure you can prepare a sit down dinner for 14 people?”

With my Italian mother and Jewish father and my childhood full of marathon cooking sessions, I answered truthfully:

“I don’t know how to make dinner for less than 14 people.”

"All-righty then."

Job Market Looking Up!

I've been searching for work for over 2 years now and it's been grim.

But, every once in a while, I see a job posting on Craigslist that gives me hope for the future, such is this little nugget from this morning:

"We are currently seeking individuals to be interviewed via the phone about how they would survive a zombie outbreak."

Then they go and ruin the whole thing with those two, horrid words:

" pay."

Oh well, I guess I'll just keep looking.

(The fabulous Tor Johnson from Edward D. Wood Jr.'s magnum opus "Plan 9 From Outer Space.")

(Confidential to Loops and Forks: "Boris Karloff does not deserve to smell my sh*t!")

Morning News 5/20/10

F*CK YOU JUDGE! Malawi male couple sentenced to 14 years hard labor. Their lawyers plan to appeal. US and UK (among others) condemn the ruling. I am so glad the US has sent $70 million to that country. Perhaps we could ask for it back?

Anyone who scares Dick Cheney... Rand Paul wants to ban abortion and legalize pot. ...well actually, he scares me too.

You Sank My Battle Ship! North Korea torpedo downed South's ship, investigation reveals.

No "Surpised Kitty" For You! Pakistani ban now includes Youtube. Here are 17 seconds of footage, sure to topple the Islamic Republic:

Family Values Politician, Vito Fossella (who's second family's existence was revealed after his DUI) nominated by GOP for his old seat.

The Rekers From Down Under. JMG tips us this morning about an Australian family values politician caught leaving a gay bath house.

(Super picture of classic latte rosette courtesy Mortefot)

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Dinner With Chandra And JR

I felt the need for a light, summer meal last night so I went ahead and sauteed some shrimp in olive oil and butter with shallots and grape tomatoes. Toward the end I deglazed the pan with stock and dry vermouth, swirled in a tablespoon of cornstarch slurry and finished with a few tablespoons of heavy cream and fresh minced parsley.

Then on to dessert.

In keeping with the theme of light, summer loveliness we finished the meal with mixed, fresh raspberry, blackberry and blueberry cups topped with Crème Chantilly. It only took about two minutes to whip fresh, heavy cream by hand in my favorite copper bowl, finished with a touch of sugar, a splash of pure vanilla and garnished with a single mint leaf.

The conversation was lovely. I reconnected with one of my oldest, dearest friends while Dr. Snickerdoodle and I made a whole new friend in the bargain.

(Confidential to the Crazed Quilter: Lunch/coffee next week my dear?)

Morning News 5/19/10

Choose And Perish! Nate Silver over at 538 dot com has a swell wrap-up of yesterday's elections and what they mean.

Paul Defeats Grayson in Kentucky, Sestak defeats Specter in Pennsylvania, Lincoln and Halter head to run-off in Arkansas and conventional wisdom leaves a lot to be desired.

In local news, the Oregon governor's race will be Kitzhaber v. Dudley in evening wear, swimsuit and talent. I hear Dudley can open a can of Bud with his bellybutton, so the Democrats better watch out.

Not My Mess. Turns out tar balls washing ashore in Florida Keys are not from the BP spill. Are we supposed to be relieved about that?

Also in Florida Filth: Continuing damage from the George (totally-not-gay) Rekers scandal. AG Bill McCollum faces scrutiny for hiring the discredited bigot-asshole (at taxpayer expense). In fact, Rekers "expert" testimony played a part in both the Florida gay adoption ban and the Prop 8 case.

Today's the day to tell a friend about The Flaming Chef! Send an URL or toss a carrier pigeon out the window. However you do it, spread the gooey goodness!

(Public Domain image from the Mr. Universe Competition)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Afternoon News Update 5/18/10

Oy Vey! Teabagger defeats Republican in Kentucky.

Oy Gevalt! Family Values/Homophobe/Jackass Republican Rep. resigns 'cause he was diddling a staffer.

Ooh! Groovy space pix of Mt. St. Helens before, during and after the eruption.

Oh! Vote expected next week on DADT.

Oh? Prop 8 Judge Vaughn Walker enjoys a Martini in the Castro with a handsome companion.

(I don't know where these acrobats came from.)

We Have A Winner II

Queen Alexandra (center, with crown) flanked by her daughters, the princesses Louise and Victoria (sporting snazzy tiaras).

We have our first winner for "Comment of the Month!"

Our special, middle-of-the-night, can't sleep news update from April 25th, 2010 yielded a nugget about Mike Huckabee failing to convince Rosie O'Donnell that he's not an asshole.

Take it away maripoza:

Assholes are such lovely things, which do suffer for the comparison to one such as Monsieur Huckabee.

I think he nailed it ladies and gentlemen.

Not only is he the winner of a super-glamorous, secret prize but maripoza is an extraordinarily talented artist. Follow the link to have a peek at his beautiful, astonishing, fantabulous art!

(An aside to all my screaming fans. Tell a friend about The Flaming Chef and, if you haven't already done so, consider following my blog.

My enormous ego requires stroking. More! More!)

Morning News 5/18/10

30 years ago this morning...

On May 18th 1980 Mount St. Helens erupted releasing 1,600 times the energy of the atomic bomb at Hiroshima, blanketing 11 US states, destroying hundreds of square miles of forest and killing almost 60 people. My house in Portland was covered with ash and we all thought it was terribly exciting. (Photo from USGS via Wikipedia.)

You're Fired, and You're An Asshole Too. JMG tells us this morning that "proud homophobe" Jonathan I. Katz will not be contributing his awesome intellectual powers to the BP spill clean-up.

Dammit. Judge finds Malawian gay couple guilty... of being gay. They face a possible 14 years hard labor.

Which Way Is The Wind Blowing? Voters heading to polls today in four US states, including my home state of Oregon.

Port, Sardines and Marriage Equality. Portugal joins a growing list of civilized countries. Take that, Pope!

Report from Asia: Homophobia makes everything worse.

To balance out all that here's a picture of New York style Cheesecake covered with strawberries from Carnegie Deli in New York. Picture courtesy Pilauricey at en.wikipedia:

Stare deeply into the cheesecake and feel all the troubles of the world melt away. There's no such thing as bad news when you can lie back and think of cheesecake.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Morning News 5/17/10

BP Sucks. BP sucking up 1,000 barrels of oil per day and will "try" to stop the leak later this week.

2 Billion, with a "B". Youtube now gets double the daily hits than all the people who tune in to the 3 major US networks every day combined.

Only her hairdresser knows for sure. Folks keep askin' about Kagan. Maureen Dowd imagines her in a "...lacy peach peignoir..." That ought to settle things.

Sestak v. Burns. Burns flogs Sestak's (former) republican status, makes headway.

Utah? Kids are coming out younger, even in... Utah?

Making The World Safe For Straight People, One Funeral At A Time. Via JMG: Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty (R) has vetoed a bill that would have granted domestic partners the right to make burial decision for deceased spouses.

(Pawlenty) also said that a “surviving domestic partner” should not be “afforded the same legal recognition” as a spouse. “Marriage — as defined as between a man and a woman — should remain elevated in our society at a special level, as it traditionally has been,” said Pawlenty in his veto message. “I oppose efforts to treat domestic relationships as the equivalent of traditional marriage.”
 Don't worry everyone. There's no such thing as homophobia so we can all go back to bed.

(Public domain image of double espresso by Mark Prince via Wikipedia.)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Morning News 5/16/10

Don't think about anything depressing today.

Find a nice, flaky pastry and a cup of coffee or some lovely tea and sit in the sun.

Read a book, paint a picture, go for a walk, listen to the birds sing.

It's just that kind of day.

(Happy Birthday Sweetie Darling! You know who you are.)

(Public domain image of apple glazed Danish pastry uploaded to Wikipedia by Karmosin.)