becomingkate: (Default)
 I'm excited! I thought of a new way to keep myself busy on twitter.  I've started posting cooking tips.  Simple tips I take for granted.  I've been thinking a lot lately about people who can't cook.  My friend told me she burns rice every time she cooks it.  I kept telling her she needs to turn down the heat more and she finally did it and it worked.

I really think cooking is something everyone should know how to do.  I try to involve my son whenever I cook.  Even if it's just helping me open cans or using a butter knife to help me cut things, I like him to see the process and know what goes into what's on the table.  My mother cooked with me from a young age.  She used to make pies a lot and she'd give me the scraps from the crust and I'd cut out my own little pie dough cookies and she'd bake them and sprinkle them with cinnamon sugar.  I can still picture the kitchen from the house we moved out of when I was 9.

If you'd like to follow me, I'm @bhcookbook.  I talk a lot to and about NKOTB.  They're the reason I'm there in the first place.  But I'm trying to branch out with the cooking tips.  

Okay so as I was writing this I decided to check the cookbook's e mail account.  I got a note from the woman I've been speaking with about the cookbook and she says fall at the earliest is the soonest they'll be thinking about a cookbook (after the tour).  I'm SO happy she told me this, this means she's taking me seriously, I think!  GAH!
becomingkate: (Default)
 I was a cooking fiend today.  I make a veggie lasagna for the church potluck tomorrow, a chicken pot pie for home and I prepped scallops and bacon for later tonight because they're so tedious to make, I just want to pop them in the oven when we want them.

NKOTB is coming out with new music, and they premiered the single last night.  It's pretty awesome.  Not just NKOTB awesome but actually good, I think.  It has a great beat and it's a very different sound from what NKOTB used to do.  So I am happy.  A lot of people aren't happy because it doesn't sound "radio friendly" which I disagree with, and because they used autotune.

Okay here is my autotune rant.  There are two types of singers who use autotune.  Those who use it because they can't sing and those who use it to achieve a certain sound.  NKOTB can sing.  They sing live, they sing impromptu all the time, it's obvious they can sing.  Even Danny and Jon who don't sing many solos can actually sing.  When they use autotune it's to achieve an effect that can't be produced naturally.  It is odd to hear autotune from a band who was big in a time that didn't have autotune.  But I like it because it sounds fresh and current.  

The other day tickets went on sale for their new tour.  I got two tickets for me and my friend.  Then my friend asked me to use her CC to buy her a ticket in Philly because she was at an appt. and couldn't access a computer.  It took me forever to get everything right but I did it.  Then she texted me and said "um...you bought Pittsburgh, not Philly."

For anyone who's not aware of how HUGE PA is, Pittsburgh is about 7 hours from where she is, near Philly.

Thankfully she was able to e mail the ticket company and get a refund but now she has to wait until Monday to buy a Philly ticket.  The presales were over the weekend and now she has to grapple with what's left in general sales.  I feel really bad and I hope she gets the type of ticket she wants.

See, she wants to do the 5* ticket where she gets to meet nkotb and get her picture taken with them and amazing seats and get a gift package and 2 free items from the merch stand.  Which is awesome but not really worth the money IMO.  I've done it once and it was great to meet them but it was so quick and impersonal. She said she'll be happy if she gets a 4* (good seats and a nkotb gift) but I know she really wants a 5*.

So that's what's up. I'm really excited to see nkotb again and finally go to a show with a true friend and not someone I just met for the purpose of hanging out with someone at the show.  I've done that before and met some good people, but there's something awesome about going with someone you were friends with before!
becomingkate: (elphaba)
Next year my husband wants to try eating more vegetarian food (someone pointed out that I'd actually be pescatarian, since we are still open to eating fish ;))

We don't want to be very strict about it at all, actually.  I guess mostly cut out the major meat options like steak, pork, chicken and turkey, sausage, bacon, etc.  Anything that's pure meat.  Eat more veggies and fruits and not too many grains.  I'm not adverse to imitation meat but I don't think my husband would love it, so we need to find other ways to get protein. (also my husband doesn't like tofu--but I do)  We both like beans.  Also I think we want to cut out eggs.  Cheese and other dairy are still allowed.

I have a good grasp of cooking but I have never cooked a lot of vegetables--I usually just get a variety of frozen veg. and serve them as a side.  I'd like a good vegetarian lasagna recipe, maybe some pasta recipes, salads and fish.  So if any of you have favorite vegetarian recipes you want to share, I'd love to see them!
becomingkate: (Default)

I found a couple Christmas stations on Pandora-Christmas Radio and Classical Christmas.  I do enjoy classical music but the more contemporary Christmas songs are more fun to listen to.  Classical is good for having in the background while eating Christmas dinner or opening presents or something.

My husband texted me earlier and said "Since I'll be near a microwave for lunch this week why don't you make a chicken pot pie?"  Usually he is on the road and can only bring cold food.  So I look outside and it's snowing.  Oh joy, I'm going to Target in the snow!  So I treated myself to Starbucks to make it a little less dismal.  Don't get me wrong, I do kind of like snow, it's pretty but it's also cold and wet.  And cold.  Did I mention that?

I can't wait for my son to get home.  I think he'll be excited about the snow, even though it's not actually sticking to anything. 

becomingkate: (Default)
Aren't you proud of me?  I've been writing a lot.

I actually have shit I need to get done but since I started this already, I'll write a bit.  I found a simple enough looking cheesecake recipe for Thanksgiving.  I got an idea to make an Oreo crusted cheesecake out of these Oreos that nobody eats and I've been fixated on that even though I don't really like cheesecake and I've never made one from scratch in my life.  I hope it doesn't suck.

Help! I can't stop buying things for my son!  His birthday was on Saturday and I'm already buying him more stuff.  The thing is, when he says "Mommy, I want to paint", I feel the need to run out and get him paints before the urge passes.  He has an easel my dad gave him one? two? years ago and he used it for a while and then we needed more space so it went up to the spare room and he never really used it again.  The other day he came down in his Home Depot smock with a paint brush in his hand and said "I want to paint but I couldn't find my paints."  So today I went out and got him paints (because his old ones dried up).  Watch, now he won't want to do it.

I just want to indulge him in his interests so hopefully he finds out what he loves (or even likes) to do a little earlier than mommy did.  So he's not stuck feeling like an empty shell because he didn't find out until he was married with kids that that's not really what he wanted, after all, and that he'd be much happier painting on the beach in Tahiti, or whatever his calling turns out to be.

*cough*  Sorry that went south a bit.  Why is it that when I start writing with a positive vibe it always downspirals into self-loathing?  LOL.

In good news, my son and I had a nice day yesterday.  We were so busy he didn't have time for meltdowns.  He got a gift from a friend at school who couldn't make it to his party.  It turned out to be something he already had, and the receipt was taped on the box!  Hooray!  At first he though he might want to keep it, just to have extra, but later on he decided he wanted to exchange it.  

At Toys R Us, I started feeling awful.  It's that time when my insides basically hate me.  So I asked him to please hurry and pick something and he was very good about that and we came home.  I felt awful and my son actually said, "Wow mommy, you must feel really bad."  It was one of the first signs of empathy I'd seen him display so earnestly like that.  Usually he's like, "Eh, whatever, help me with my Legos."
becomingkate: (Default)
I'd like to start a series of installments here.  If it catches on and I come up with a lot of material I may spin off into its own blog.  Let me start with some back story.

About 5 years ago, I went to culinary school and got a AAS in culinary arts.  My husband told me I was already a great cook.  I knew I was, but I thought I had to know "how to cook" in order to make it in the business.  I thought cooking school would teach me the concrete way to braise, stew, cut meat, prepare vegetables and roast the perfect chicken.  This was not the case.  I wish i had known that the ways to complete these tasks vary as much as the people running each restaurant.

I did my internship at a dog racing track in the area and after that was over, they hired me full time.  It was my most personally successful job to date, but I quit when it got boring because I wanted to be challenged, and do more with my degree than flip burgers and build towering nacho plates.  Plus, there was a small conflict of interest named Brian, who I will go into later.

After a few more brieft stints at jobs that would be demeaning to anyone, let alone someone with a degree in cooking, I landed a job that I felt was way over my head, but hey, they hired me, so they must feel I can do it, right?  I thought I was doing fine, to start.  After all, line cooking is line cooking.  Well, to some extent.

Soon I was hearing whispers and sarcastic comments along the lines of, "Oh Kate's here, now we're good to go!" (insert rolling eyes here)  But I was still thinking, if I'm that bad, I'll get fired, or at least spoken to, right?

And this is where I learned the lesson called It Is Easier to Keep a Lousy Worker Than to Train a New One.  I was going to have to rely on my own self-judgement on this one.  So I quit.  I didn't like being laughed at, told to get out of the way, and people having to fix my mistakes and pick up my slack.

It's not that I cannot cook.  I just cannot do this thing that seems to be an important skill in the culinary world, called "Thinking on your feet".  Some other things I do not like to do outside the home are "Cleaning" and "Organizing".  I don't flip out if the garnish is not pointing at a 75 degree angle, or if the plate does not look "sexy " or "gay" ("gay", apparently, is a good way for a finished plate to look, in the world of upscale cooking.  And you thought it was a derogatory term.

So that is where I am now. 
So you really understand, let me start us off on the reasons why I should have never tried to be a line cook.

1.  I am a girl.  This is not a jab at a woman's abilities to keep up with the men in the kitchen.  It's just that I am proud to be a girl.   (Even though I'm so low maintenance, you'd never know it.)  I was just not one of those girls who can pal around with guys, slap them on the back, and make off color jokes with the best of them.  Sometimes I even like to look like a girl, not some shapeless form in a too-big chef coat, unflattering black pants and clunky shoes.  And for some reason, I just do not fit in with the bunch of guys who are crowded around a cell phone, ogling some picture of a girl's boobs.  (I think that's what they call "sexting".)  I just did my prep, rolling my eyes in that "Ooh you guys are so silly" way, trying to laugh it off, not sure if I should be offended, or laugh, or just quit trying to fit my round self into this square hole.  I ended up doing a little bit of all three.

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becomingkate

February 2014

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