Superfluous Matter

Further to my previous post, I have today accomplished one of those forever postponed activities related to my blog. I can now apply "tags" to my posts for the purposes of categorization. Posts with tags will show them at the end of the body text but before the comments link. I haven't done anything else fancy with the tags yet but that might come in time. The main benefit of this for me is to get a bit more searchability in the future related to my cooking posts.

This activity took me a couple hours and was another exercise in letting go. I had lots of ideas for a perfect tagging implementation that were holding me back from doing anything at all. I wanted to use it as learning oppourtunity for Web 2.0 stuff and make it so that when I'm tagging things I get fancy dynamic feedback on already existing tags. But that's a lot of work and research and if I'm honest I just don't care enough. So I did something super ugly and hacky but it still works great for my needs. End result? I have tags and it didn't take up much time.

I do this sort of prioritization at work all the time with no problem, but for some reason I still have trouble doing it for personal projects.

Cooking - Apple Sauce

Like many people I have a list of things I'd like to do "someday" that I never actually get around to due to matters of prioritization. One item on that list is to add a recipe tool to this blog with lots of cool features to help me track and share my cooking adventures.

As of today, I am scratching that item off the list. Not because I've done it but because I recognize that I likely never will. By accepting this fact and moving on I remove one small thing hanging over my head and no longer have to feel even a tiny amount of guilt for not doing it.

Furthermore, I often refrained from sharing stories about cooking on this blog because I wanted to wait until I created the recipe tool so that I could share "properly." I also realized that I don't cook in a way that lends itself to exact recipes anymore; the tool I envisioned would actually be a bit of a hindrance.

So from now on I plan to simply write about things I cook in free-form blog posts when the mood strikes me. This shall be the first.

Over New Year's this year Mike, Matt and Adrienne all stayed with me at my apartment. New Year's Day we all lazily sat around watching Netflix and eating. Then Adrienne randomly made apple sauce for everyone and my mind was blown because I didn't know you could just make apple sauce any time you wanted. I think it only took her half an hour and then we all shared this delicious treat.

A few weeks ago I bought a 3lb bag of apples that turned out to be pretty crap for eating. Rather than ignore them until they went bad and then throw them out I decided to make apple sauce. Adrienne just cooked them on the stove top with cinnamon but I wanted to see if I could kick it up a notch so I searched for some tips on the Internet. As is my usual style I merged many recipes and added my own modifications so that what I made did not really resemble anything I found. The end result was delicious though!

To make my apple sauce I peeled, cored and chopped a bunch of apples (less than 3lbs but more than 2lbs). Then I put the apples in a big pot with a bit of water, a big knob of butter (several tablespoons worth at least), a generous amount of cinnamon, some nutmeg, cardamon, a bit of maple syrup and a squeeze of lemon juice. I then cooked it slowly (stirring regularly) until the apples had broken down and the volume had reduced considerably. Finally I used an immersion blender to blend until smooth. The combination of spices and butter gives the sauce the taste of apple pie. It's amazing at any temperature and freezes well too. I have since made another batch using Northern Spy apples and it was even better. I suspect one could attain even greater results with a mixture of different types of apples.

A nice side-effect of this recipe is that the smell of spicy apples filled my apartment for days after making it (in a good way).

I don't think I'll ever buy apple sauce again.

2014-03 | 2014-05