I got inspired this morning.  That is, I wanted a cinnamon roll.  It’s entire impractical to make just one, so I made a batch and took them to work.  I guess my reputation has started to grow since I was walking towards the building and noted the work van heading towards a satellite clinic.  The driver stopped in the middle of the road and asked for a contribution.  I gave away two rolls before even getting to the facility parking lot.  The recipe is simple:

just shy of 4 cups flour

1/3 cup sugar

1 egg

1/4 cup margarine, though I just use a knife and put in whatever looks like enough

2 tsp yeast

couple shakes of cinnamon

small shake of nutmeg.

1 tsp of salt – measured by pouring in the hand, of course

Place in machine and run dough cycle until into the last rise.  My machine takes a bit under an hour to get there.

Roll out on a floured board and make a rectangle about 8″ x 14 inches that’s about 1/2″ thick.  Next drizzle melted margarine over all but one edge of the upper surface to just coat.  Cover completely with cinnamon, except that dry strip along the long edge.  Add a little Nutmeg.  Roll from the coated long side towards the bare long side.  Wet the long side and secure to the roll.  Obtain about 3 feet of button thread.  Slide the thread under the roll and pass the ends across each other about 1″ from the end.  Pull.  This will neatly cut a 1″ thick circle.  Repeat this process until the entire roll is cut.  Place the circles on a greased pan and let rise.  Spray with water occasionally and putting on the stove above the heated oven helps in the rising time.  An actual proofing oven runs at 105 degrees and 100% humidity.  I don’t have that, so improvise.  It works.  For bread, I use an upside down cooler over the edge of the oven to catch the exhaust of the oven and help the bread to rise.  Bake at 375 degrees for about 12 minutes, or until just starting to brown.  Remove from the pan and let cool.  Frost with a mixture of powdered sugar and small amount of water which has been run in the microwave for a few seconds.  Enjoy.

Today is the actual election day.  The electors will perform their much anticipated task demonstrating the wisdom of the founders in balancing power of the large vs small population states.  Whenever I hear the popular vote meme, it’s interesting how few to none of the times the philosophy of the electoral college is discussed.  Rhode Island, for example is the smallest state and didn’t want to be steam-rolled in any national election due to its size.  After all, any tiny state would have little to no authority in a system where the total votes of democracy rule.  In the practical sense, the small states could be ignored while the populated stated are courted in a  total democracy.  Look at New York in a county fashion to see this in practice.  There are enough voters in a small few counties on the East of New York to effectively null the votes of the remainder of the state.  Hillary won the state in the early 2000’s in the NYC and Albany, and ignored the rest of the state.  There were enough votes in NYC to all her to ignore the remainder of the state.  The electoral college prevents that kind of election from happening nationally.  The small states get a proportionally higher involvement compared to the larger states.  Our founder’s wisdom is shown again.

China has removed one of our unmanned subs from the ocean.  It will eventually be returned to us – in pieces after everything has been thoroughly scanned.  I have read on the implications in the area and technology theft possible and thoughts on the same.  There is a politically viable angle as well.  This move allows China to do two things at once – slap Zero in the face and test the metal of Donald Trump.  Slapping Zero is too easy.  He is a Marxist/muslim who hates this country and is happy to cooperate with United States defamation wherever it is initiated.  This was signaled by his bowing incidents on the initial apology tour of the world at the start of his pathetic eight years.  This has been repeated more times than I wish to remember as well.  That said, it may be more to test the reaction of President-elect Trump than anything else.  I remember the election of Ronald Reagan and the release of the hostages on that very night.  They were only released because they understood that Carter was a wimp and Reagan would kick them back to (pick your destination).  China knows Trump as the businessman/investor who has done business there for decades.  Now they have to deal with him from a military/national standpoint and need a reference point as to how he will react to their aggressiveness in the area.  Under Zero, they have expanded bases to the south and claimed formerly sea under either international waters or under claim by other nations.  Will Trump cause a problem?  is probably a good question for them to ask.  This incident may be providing the answer.

I played cook over the weekend.  We had visitors for whom I made doughnuts.  There was a can of raspberry filling available in the pantry, so I decided to utilize some and make filled doughnuts.  The result was rather tasty, though a bit large.  I will have to make smaller doughnuts next time.  There was quite an amount remaining from the can of filling, so I looked up a recipe for filled cookies and found a simple one consisting of 2 egg yokes, 12/ cup sugar, 3/4 cup butter and 1 3/4 cup flour.  I forget if there was a dash of salt.  Anyways, blend the first three, slowly add the flour, and place in the refrigerator until small balls can be formed.  Depress the center of the ball and bake at 375 degrees for 12 -15 minutes.  Place a dot of the fruit in the depression and they are done.  It has been tasty.  I still have a few left, and granted, it is tempting to grab one when walking by – it’s not too much, they are small…

Yesterday evening, we arrived home from work and set about figuring supper.  I had previously pulled out a couple chicken breasts and we had salad fixings.  Spouseinbox cut the breasts into 1″cubes and then mixed a single egg with an equivalent amount of milk.  The pieces were place in the egg/milk mixture and coated, then put into a bag with Italian bread crumbs and shaken to achieve a coating.  During this process time, the fryer was heating.  Once all was coated, I started cutting up the rest of the salad items while spouseinbox manned the fryer.  We timed 2 minutes for each basket and once done, decided that Chick-Fil-A had competition.  This was placed on the salads and dressing was applied over the top.  Yum!

For supper last night, we decided to try something different.  Spouseinbox picked up a bag of fajita chicken and tortillas.  We already had some small colored bell peppers and cheese.  With advice from siblinginbox, I looked up a sauce recipe and of course didn’t follow it.  We did use it as suggestion and took about 1/4 cup mayonnaise  (actually the salad dressing variety) added cumin, garlic, sugar, paprika and a pinch of dried jalapeno pieces.  This sauce was applied to the tortillas, grilled chicken and peppers placed, then cheese applied.  We folded the tortilla and fried the result until it was crisp on both sides and the cheese was melted.  Restaurants, sorry, we have you beat.  It wasn’t too hard to prepare either.

If not, let me see if I can help.  We had a zucchini out of the garden which was about 5″ across and close to a foot long.  This was cut into slices, coated, salted with a salt/garlic mix and put on the grill.  This morning, we took a ham and put it into the smoker at 170 degrees for all day.  Lastly, the wind helped to pick some peaches from the tree.  They were ripe, flavorful, a bit tart with excellent color both outside and through to the seed.  They did make a good dessert.

I was thinking about the planning and effort as the tree was planted two years ago with digging to plant, application of water, fertilizer, and time.  The zucchini also required work, and after the work, there is enjoyment.  Right now I can apply a contented sigh and stretch.

The Spring was filled with stuff like shoveling a truck full of compost and running the tiller until unknown muscles were sore.  After that, the rocks needed to be raked and placed out of the way.  Fertilizer was added and also tilled. Finally, seed was applied to the area and watering and waiting began.


We had 5 servings from the one and gave away the other.

This evening, the work had a payday.  We had green beans right off the plants combined with turkey which was previously smoked.  This was joined by cut up cucumber from my doctor’s garden.  The starch was one of those flavored packages of noodle/rice/etc for a buck.  All in all, quite a nice dinner.  The flavor of the beans was really nice.  It’s interesting the difference from canned or restaurant where the effects of processing have to be covered.  We steamed ours.  A little shake of garlic salt was applied and the rest was left for the tastebuds.  We have already given away 3 zucchini and I’m thinking the corn, or at least a few ears, may be ready to try tomorrow.  We just have to decide with what to serve them.  Here is a pic of supper.  Supper

Last night, we altered our menu for the week and decided to use up some filling.  Let me back up a bit.  At the end of last week, we made some stuffed peppers.  The basic recipe came from a book which told how to cook for a day and freeze and use meals for a month.  Anyways, one of those recipes was for stuffed peppers with instructions on the filling – where that is made and the peppers are boiled for 3 minutes, stuffed, and baked for half an hour.  We discovered that it works well as a bag of stuffing in the freezer without the peppers.  When needed, thaw and make the peppers all within the hour.  This was the filling left in the refrigerator.  We also had half a box of manicotti in the pantry which had graced the shelf for many months.  How about combining them?  Well, we boiled the manicotti, warmed the stuffing enough to place inside, opened a can of tomato sauce and covered the top, then placed in the oven.  After about 40 minutes, we removed them, placed on a plate and sprinkled a little cheese on the top.  photo

I will say it was pretty decent for a few minutes of work.

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