- Photoset: itisnotofimport: Misha lays down the motherfucking law. [x] t.co/Y1WknHZkks ->
- Photo: Vegan Bacon & Tot Tofu Scramble.COMFORT FOOD. (Recipe here.) t.co/8Qg9ld8o8I ->
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When a dessert sporting roasted bananas crossed my tumblr dash, my mind immediately went to ice cream – banana ice cream, that is. I wondered if anyone had tried roasting bananas prior to freezing them for ice cream and, if so, what effect this might have on the finished product. Right away I hit the net in search of recipes. (An by “right away” I mean several weeks later. Procrastination, it’s my strong suit.)
Turns out there are as many ways to make roasted banana ice cream as there are bananas in a bunch. Let’s start with the roasting: you can slice and freeze the bananas and then roast them – or slice and roast them, and then pop ‘em in the freezer (which, incidentally, is the method I use here). You can roast them in their peels or naked. The bananas can function as the base in true banana ice cream form, or be used as flavoring for a milk base (non-dairy, in our case). Food processor or ice cream machine, take your pick. Or mix them half and half with unroasted bananas! Is your head spinning yet?
In the end, I went with the slice and roast method, and it worked quite well. The brown sugar and margarine congealed into a sticky sweetener which hardened nicely when chilled. As with regular old banana ice cream, you want to use overripe bananas – just not quite as brown and mushy as usual (too hard to slice!). The bananas shrink down quite a bit during roasting, so you’ll end up with a little less ice cream than normal; seven bananas yields about three quarters of a quart, whereas five unroasted bananas usually amounts to a full quart of ice cream for me.
The taste of roasted bananas is difficult to describe. It tastes…roasted? Kind of a bit richer than regular old bananas. The whiskey is optional, but is super-neat in that it prevents the ice cream from freezing solid. Instead, it exists in this perpetual state of soft serve. Definitely a bonus in my book.
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- Kaylee's home! – t.co/k0K559Uj3d @furkids #dogs #renailfailure ->
- Stand with victims of military sexual assault t.co/D3Bqa4FKmA ->
Kaylee & I before yesterday’s 3PM checkout.
She’s still not eating or drinking on her own, unfortunately. Stubborn old girl.
The latest Kaylee update: Even though her values hadn’t changed much (boo!), we were able to bring Kaylee home from the vet yesterday (yay!). I’m way too tired and busy to write much of anything – she still isn’t digging food, so mealtime takes a good half hour – but I copied some of my most recent facebook updates below. Lazy, right?
Please pay careful attention to the last bit and, if you have any suggestions, leave ‘em in the comments. I will love you forever.
Kaylee’s creatinine levels are up today, which isn’t exactly awesome news, but new vet doesn’t seem super-concerned. (Perhaps it’s just because their situations are so different, but he seems far less fatalistic than the vets we dealt with during Ralphie’s meltdown.) He wants to see how she’ll do in her home environment, so we’re bringing her home this afternoon! I’m crazy nervous about getting to her eat and drink, so hopefully she’ll cooperate. We spent the morning rearranging the beds in the house so that Shane can sleep in the sunroom with most of the little buggers, and Kaylee and I can have the adjacent bedroom all to ourselves. I wanted to spoil Ralphie in this way, but sadly we didn’t have enough time.
So anyway, that’s where we’re at.
- Photo: theamericankid: Japan gets true love right t.co/ZAfXIBILqG ->
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- Tell your U.S. Rep to support the bipartisan King-Thompson background checks bill. #DemandAction: t.co/HkcYnkASOc via @DemandAction ->
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- RT @ShanePBrady: Kaylee at the hospital before she checks out t.co/lHGo69us5E ->
- The Enemy by Larry Bograd – Book Blast Giveaway – Enter to win a $100 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash t.co/XzXhROJRnd ->
- Photo: daenerystaygaryen: To just sleep in a car like this, with your best friend or boyfriend and not worry… t.co/WsClcbTypl ->
- vivalaausten: I wish I could just run away from my problems when things get hard like Michele Bachman does t.co/tYcz1XnAPw ->
- Kaylee Update (Spoiler: It's so-so.) – t.co/BnxdeLZmag ->
- Photoset: Also a few shots from yesterday, ‘cause my girl is so damn cute. t.co/U5Mhl61vh9 ->
5/14/13 – Got to visit with Kaylee outside again!
This time we went earlier in the day since it hit 90 after noon.
Went to visit Kaylee in the early afternoon because the high was supposed to hit 90 (!). I figured we’d better get an early start if we wanted to visit outside – which we did, for about a half an hour. (She had to be back on fluids in an hour, so.) She had a little more energy and interest in food than yesterday, but today’s visit was a bit more depressing because she was obviously miffed at me – whether for leaving her at the hospital or trying to force food down her gullet, I don’t know (both probably).
Her kidney values haven’t changed any, but we’re going to leave her at the hospital for one more day just in case anything changes (doubtful, but possible). At the very least, they can keep her hydrated and (hopefully) eating. Her latest doc thinks that these are “livable” levels, as long as she’s eating and drinking consistently. Supposedly the staff was able to coax her into eating a whole jar of baby food this morning, but she mostly snubbed me.
5/14/13 – Another pic from today’s visit!
Hopefully tonight will be her last in the hospital.
If this anorexia persists, we have the option of inserting a feeding tube in her neck, but that makes me hella uncomfortable. Plus there’s that old adage that you know it’s over when a dog refuses to eat. Of course this isn’t any dog – Kaylee’s got a history of being finicky, is slow to respond to anti-nausea meds, and she’s maybe still a little depressed over the loss of Ralphie. It’s entirely possible that his death is what precipitated this downward spiral.
As for her long-term prognosis, no one really knows. Once we bring her home, she could last a few days, a few weeks, or a few months. The good news is that her heart is no longer much of a concern; new vet doesn’t even think we need to bother with her heart meds. He did find a growth on her spleen which could be cancer, but really her kidneys are the primary concern.
Kaylee’s a tough old broad though. That’s what I need to hold onto.
5/14/13 – Hot but breezy. The wind kept blowing the edge
of the blanket over her. She was not amused.
- RT @ShanePBrady: What I wouldn't do for some good news these days t.co/rnDRGnqgQU ->
- filed under “2013 you suck a bag of dicks” (a quick update on our canine crises) t.co/kXVjQbWTmg @furkids ->
- Ralphie the dachshund, Kaylee the rat terrier, and your fully clothed (for real!) blogger during happier days. t.co/s1y4IKRhz1 ->
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Ralphie the dachshund, Kaylee the rat terrier,
and your fully clothed (for real!) blogger during happier days.
Those of you who are friends with me on Facebook or in real life are already hip to the meaning of this post’s title, but for those who aren’t a quick update.
A few weeks ago my eldest dog kid Ralphie went into renal failure; after a 4-day hospital stay, it was determined that there was nothing we could do to save him. We brought him home last Monday afternoon and, after giving him 76 wonderful, pampered hours, he was euthanized on Thursday (incidentally, my birthday).
Two days later we rushed our second-eldest dog Kaylee to the same ER for a snake bite, which turned out to be the least of our problems. The vet ran her bloodwork “just in case” and found that she, too, is in renal failure. She’s currently undergoing the same treatment as Ralphie, which will hopefully lead to a slightly better outcome – a few weeks or months vs. a few days. Currently they’re trying to flush out her kidneys with IV fluids, which should get her values down; after that, they’ll try to wean her off the fluids to see if/how her kidneys function under more normal circumstances. Complicating matters is her heart murmur; push the fluids too hard and they could send her into congestive heart failure. Luckily that hasn’t happened – she’s got a strong heart, that one! – but it does mean that her treatment is more conservative and will take longer. We should know more tomorrow morning.
Our very last photo of Ralphie. We somehow managed to take over 900 in the last three days of his life, but I haven’t the heart to look at any of them yet.
(We had our other dogs checked out in case there was some weird environmental cause – they all managed to walk through a puddle of antifreeze at the park and lick their paws clean without my noticing, for example – but the five youngest are all in great health. The vets are fairly positive that the timing is just a coincidence. A horrible, horrible coincidence.)
Anyway, I had a bunch of posts scheduled in advance – everything published last week was written well before Ralphie fell ill, and the twitter digests are generated automatically – but the queue has mostly run dry. Probably you won’t hear from me in a while.
I plan on writing more – much, much more – after the crises have passed. Until then, hit me up on Facebook if you’d like to follow Kaylee’s progress; I’ve been more active there this week than in the first four months of 2013 combined. If you could, please send positive thoughts/prayers/positive energy/good vibes my way. These dogs mean the world to me; to lose one is difficult enough, but two in as many weeks? Unthinkable. I could use all the extra strength you can spare.
A few of the many photos we took during today’s two-hour visit with Kaylee. We were able to take her outside, which was awesome. We spread a blanket out in the shade (next to a vacant office building – you take what you can get) and got some quality cuddle time in. While we were gone the staff set up a “buffet” for her in Exam 2, where I tried to coax her into eating. I got her to lick the tongue depressor a few times, but mostly I had to trick her into eating by plastering baby food to the roof of her mouth.
She was pretty annoyed with me by the time we left.
- Photo: t.co/Fd9HYY84G1 ->
- Photo: t.co/1YCBKAIJtz ->
- RT @ShanePBrady: I wrote this about Kaylee almost five years ago. She still is the toughest. t.co/pMMrlPnbuV ->
- Visiting Kaylee at the animal hospital today. Rennie photo bombs one of them. t.co/DtNdtaGhPP ->
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- RT @Jezebel: White Girls Club just got "out of hand," says racist's oblivious mom t.co/Y0qu35cx4Y ->
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This is actually a variation on the Pesto Genovese from Nonna’s Italian Kitchen by Bryanna Clark Grogan. I’ve never met a pesto I didn’t like, but this one’s especially tasty. The original recipe calls for Soymage Parmesan, but here it’s swapped out for nutritional yeast, lemon juice, and – this is where things get strange – vegan chicken broth powder. Which I just so happen to have on hand thanks to my new favorite bulk foods site. (BACOS BY THE POUND!) I love the powdered stuff compared to bouillon – not only is it easy to use, but no palm oil. Yay! But I digress.
Served over a pound of gnocchi with some mixed veggies (not pictured – a last minute addition, they were still in the microwave during the photo session), this was the perfect quick and light meal for the first hot day of the year. fwiw, one recipe makes about enough pesto for one to two bags of gnocchi (or a bag of gnocchi + 2 cups o’ vegetables), depending on how heavy you like it.
- Photo: fuckyeahfatvegans: i don’t eat donuts with boys t.co/ALRT3zALlc ->
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- Our very last photo of Ralphie. Return to the stars, my little man. t.co/qeyonoJ9ar ->
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- met two gods… t.co/BXq7DTOPrH ->
- I don't take orders from women! t.co/fWoggX6SWO ->
The Horrors of Misogyny
* Trigger alert for physical and sexual violence. *
“The stories in this book are harsh. You may have found them hard to hear in places. If so, be assured that I found them equally hard to write in places.”
Ostensibly, the novellas contained within these pages – 1922, Big Driver, Fair Extension, and A Good Marriage (the paperback edition contains a fifth title, Under the Weather; but seeing as I “read” the audio version, I’m out of luck there) – revolve around the theme of revenge: a murdered wife haunts her husband/killer from the afterlife; a rape victim left for dead slays her rapist and his accomplices; a man wishes ill on his undeservedly lucky best friend; and, upon discovering that her husband is a serial killer, a woman attempts to find justice for his victims (past and future) without destroying her own family in the process. And while retribution is indeed a common thread, it takes a backseat to the more toxic and visceral theme of misogyny.
The men in these stories hate women: those they know, those they don’t know, those they wish they knew. Even mild-mannered Harry Streeter, the protagonist of Fair Extension, exhibits the classic trappings of a Nice Guy ™ when reminiscing about his first love Norma, “stolen” from him by his supposed best friend Tom. Physical and sexual violence are prevalent, and seen from a variety of perspectives: the perpetrator, the victim, and the perpetrator’s wife. In the strongest of these tales, the women on who war is waged fight back, attaining justice for themselves and others.
1922 – Nebraska, 1922. Wilfred Leland James’s wife Arlette recently inherited 100 acres of farmland from her father upon his passing. Whereas Wilf would like to incorporate this into his own 80-acre homestead, Arlette would rather sell all 180 acres and move to the bubbling metropolis of Omaha. The most obvious solution to the couples’ acrimonious, months-long standstill is divorce (however unlikely that might have been circa 1922), with the couple doing as they choose with their respective parcels of land. Complicating matters is that the most likely buyer for Arlette’s property – located upstream of Wilf’s – is the Farrington Company, an early factory farmer of pigs, which would pollute the air with the sounds of dying hogs and fill the river with their discarded blood and guts. An unabashed consumer of animal products (including pork), Wilf is the ultimate “not in my backyard” carnist. His consternation is understandable, yet hardly worthy of sympathy.
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I was craving something unhealthy – but not too unhealthy- for dinner, and this is what I came up with. Tater tots practically scream “junk food” (ditto: pan-fried bacon, vegan or not), but the tofu save this dish from nutritional purgatory.
Normally I’d add some veggies into the mix – corn, carrots, maybe some peppers or tomatoes – but this was right before a shopping trip and my stores were running low. Feel free to add in a cup or two of your favorites between steps 3 and 4. Mushrooms and black olive would go great with this flavor combo, I think.
Bacon and Tot Tofu Scramble
3-4 cups frozen tater tots
6 to 8 strips of Lightlife Smart Bacon (or tempeh bacon, if you prefer)
1 pound firm tofu, lightly pressed
1-3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 onion, diced
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1 tablespoon chives
1/4 teaspoon salt
1. Cook the tater tots according to the instructions on the package. When they’re cooking, get going on the tofu scramble.
2. In a large frying pan or skillet, heat 1-2 tablespoons of oil on medium heat. Add the bacon strips and cook evenly on each side (or according to the skillet directions on the package). When done, place the strips on a plate lined with paper towels; set aside. Leave as much of the oil – “bacon grease” – in the pan as possible.
3. Lightly press the brick of tofu to drain the excess moisture. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil on medium heat (add an extra tablespoon if necessary). Add the diced onion and cook for about five minutes, or until the onions are translucent. Add the garlic and continue to cook for another five minutes.
4. As the veggies are cooking, place the tofu in a large bowl and mash it with a fork until it becomes crumbly.
5. Pour the tofu into the skillet and mix it in with the onion and garlic. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the nutritional yeast, soy sauce, cumin, turmeric, parsley/chives, and the salt. Mix well. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until much of the moisture from the tofu has evaporated and the scrambled tofu is to your liking. Add the tater tots and mix well. Crumble the bacon and sprinkle it on top of the tofu/tot mixture. Serve warm with ketchup, sriracha, gravy, or cheesy sauce!