Wednesday, April 21, 2010

May 1st is coming

Skipping back over to our side of the pond, God Save the Queen for London Lady for filling in for me because Readers, I still have 9 more days until the end of my semester and when my projects are due. I would love to be blogging because it makes me feel happy & because my writing here is superior over the shit I am composing of a literature review & publishable article. However, I feel guilty when doing anything else but writing for those two, so I am still MIA until the May 1, which as that's a weekend may actually be May 3. If I try to romanticize it, I could say that I am Carmen San Diego, but then after the last 3 posts, I would certainly be in London. What I have to offer is some pictures about what I will be filling you in on when I am finally able to fill you in, like my Terrapin Brewery trip & what I eat while studying.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

London Lady needs you to know

What up peeps,

Here is another major UK food difference, and it's so shocking that it deserves its own post.

We do have Krispy Kreme here, but they don't know about Hot Now Hot Light. Not even the KK employees know. They make the doughnuts fresh at Harrods; I can see the miniature conveyor belt thingy. But I've been there twice and asked if they had any hot doughnuts, and both times, the guys looked at me like I was crazy.

I only need to eat a KK about once a year, but it should be hot. And these people just don't know.

Kind regards/WTF,
London Lady

Monday, April 19, 2010

London Lady Returns!

Dearest Readers,

I'm sure you've all been hanging on the edge of your seats to know more about British food. So here I am, but I'm gonna tell you some secrets about eating in.

Let's start with cheese. It's different. The cheddar is mature, which means that it's GOOD. I'm gonna miss it when I move back home. It's very flavourful. (That's British for 'flavorful.')

The other things I'll miss are flapjacks. No, I'm not referring to a big pancake. It's kinda like a granola bar, but with only oats, and other additions like sultanas (golden raisins), chocolate chips, or caramel coating. Since the oats are my favorite part of a granola bar, I'm pretty much in love with them.

A major difference between England and the States is that these people are all about the tea, but do not really care about good coffee. Now, I love tea as much as the next Cockney, but what have they got against coffee? They always offer it to me at meetings, and it's always INSTANT. Horror.

Now, these people don't know what a biscuit is. Well, they think they do, but they don't. There isn't a British equivalent of a biscuit, but they do use the term to refer to a cookie. But let's clarify the cookie terminology here.
Cookie - has chunks of something in it
Biscuit - a cookie without chunks in it, such as shortbread
Cake - a cookie with a cake-like texture, which I've never seen in the States.

My most recent obsession may sound weird, but trust me on this. Olives and peanuts. Together. Take 4-5 peanuts and one (preferably green) olive, shove it all in your mouth at the same time, and enjoy. I don't know if this is a British thing per se, but I did learn it from a British person.

Now I know I referred in my other post to Ribena, but let me expound on that. Ribena is a type of squash. Not the yellow vegetable, but the concentrated fruit drink. I guess it's kinda like those cans of concentrated orange juice that my mom used to use when I was a kid, except it's not frozen. Just a bottle of thick, sugary, fruity liquid that you dilute with water. Generally, I find it repulsive. But they also sell Ribena in a ready-to-drink form in the store (in both bottles and juice boxes!) and that is wonderful.

Oh, I almost forgot! This is my FAVORITE part of eating in in London. Marks & Spencer is a fabulous department store, complete with a food store as well. Not a traditional grocery store, because you wouldn't go there to, say, buy groceries for a week or ingredients to bake cookies. But you can buy pre-prepared food and almost-prepared food. London is very good at prepared food. They have little pots of stuff like rice, lentil, and aubergine (= eggplant); cous cous with roasted vegetables; orzo pasta & roasted tomatoes; greek salad; tomato, basil, and mozzarella salad; etc; etc. And stuff like seasoned fish or meat that's super easy to just throw in a pan for a few minutes, and ready-made meals that are actually good, that are in little foil containers so you just throw them in the oven for a little while. While they are two totally different stores, I have similar feelings for M&S and Target, if that gives you any idea how great this place is. And if Katherine lived here, M&S would make her life of eating in much easier. Of course, it would also thwart her learning process and make this blog much less interesting.

If you've ever had a Pink Lady Apple, you should be able to imagine
my excitement when I found it in juice form. More than words can describe.

Kind regards,
London Lady

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Guest Post from London Lady!

Dear Readers,

While Katherine is going on and on (and on) about not eating out in Georgia, I'm going to tell you about eating out in London. Now I know that the English are renowned for their bad food, but let me tell you, that is an over-simplification.

First of all, let me tell you that there is some really great ethnic food here. This is my favorite restaurant in London. Let me tell you, this is the best Indian food ever. (Coming from a girl who grew up around almost no Indian restaurants. But I have good taste, so trust me.) The saag panir is to die for. I never knew cottage cheese could be like that! There are also other really great Asian places, and obviously tons of great European food. Of course, Mexican food is a joke. It's totally standard for fajitas here to have cauliflower and carrots. As if Mexicans even know what cauliflower is. I cannot speak of the salsa, and they aren't even aware that cheese dip exists. But overall, ethnic food = good.

Now, while we have an abundant supply of curry shops and other great food, that's not what these people eat on a daily basis. Why, you ask? Hell if I know. Instead, they eat sandwiches. And chips (= fries). The sandwiches can be purchased at tons of shops, along with crisps (= chips) and a niceRibena. The thing is, these people could eat a sandwich and chips for every meal for the entirety of their lives, and they would be completely happy. Seriously. I now understand why that potato famine was such a big deal. It must've been like taking a fish out of water. The sandwiches and chips are good and very convenient, but everyday? Get some variety, people.

Also, have you ever heard of jellied eel pie? There are lots of pie shops here. Meat pies. And apparently jellied eels are quite traditional. Don't count on me ever giving you a first-hand account.

This is what I'm NOT eating.

So there is something to the food really sucking here, but there's also really great good!

Stay tuned for more British food eccentricities....

Kind regards, (that's a British saying!)
London Lady

Friday, April 16, 2010

Hopefully Not False Promises

Readers, I am bushed, possibly ill, possibly big head recovery stuff, possibly life, are all factors forcing me to take a time out. Sorry for the lack of postings, but I am just a little slammed. I have 2 weeks to get in lit review (if completeion rate were on a 1-100 scale, I am at an 8), the kid has CRCTs next week, and I just been going 90mph daily. If I eat one more frozen pizza I will morph into one. I miss blogging as theraputic writing and selfish "me" time, but I just don't have it. So, here is a picture of my pouty face missing you all.

Soon, I should have catch-ups and then daily-ish posts again when May 1 in done.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Walks & WTFs

Readers, food is invading my every thought now. You know in those movies where the guy is suppose to be celibate and so all he sees all around him are naked boobs? Or when you get a new car and then you realize just how many people have that same car? That's me and food.

Besides just having every conversation turn into cooking or recipes or healthy eating (errr), I have even found a need for my apron, my big measuring cup, and my recipe organizer, and need not an excuse to use them to make others happy. My exercise weights are not as heavy as the Bittman book, you're damn right I need a cook book holder!

Case in point, after a rough morning, the hubs took me to the Botanical Gardens, because he's never been and he thinks I look hot in yellow(POLLEN). We walked around, we brought a cross work puzzle, we found trees we want to put in our yard (is that not fucking ridiculous? I still can't believe that). He may have spent some time chatting up little girls, but it was a nice excursion.

Then we go walking into the section with the crane fountain, with the yellow, wonderful smelling flowers that grow like vines up the white cabana, which were my favorite so of course unnamed at the park. The I spot it and have to do a double take....

the Fried Egg Daffodil. Really? It was not even yellow that I could tell. I seriously did a double take on this one. It's started... food is going to begin to interrupt my every essence of my being. Well, I'm ready for ya, and I came to play!

Remember me?

It's been a while and I have lots of stuff to tell you guys about, but Readers, I just don't have the time to write each separately, like I had been planning, so here comes as much as I can recall and all the pictures I can give you, which is not too many. Buckle In!

Last Saturday, My student (with me as the students, not my student group as in my social workers, which I tend to deem as "my students" as they belong to me) group, UGALLA met, as I have recently become the secretary for the group (who made that executive decision, 'll never know) for a pow-wow session at my place, and we had a breakfast potluck deal. Readers, I made popovers!! My new favorite quick thing to make. My first batch looked like this...

and they were very tasty and mixed with Kiki2krash's rhubarb jam, it was heaven. I wish I had pictures of the rest of the food, while the kid just wishes there was an ever abundant supply of the cinnamon roles that were there.

MONDAY: It was Mrs. Weezy's birthday surprise dinner, which once again was breakfast themed because she and the Freudian Slippers would be coming from their triumphant win in their indoor soccer competition. I made more popovers, a coffee cake with pecans, there were blueberry muffins, and fruit. Boatshoes made 2 amazing quiches, one with tofu (no, I did not try it) and one with sausage (which I had a hearty helping of). Fivel's moms & VA & her hubs imbibed us with mimosas!
TUESDAY: My fav blogger was in town from Indy & I got to not only see her and listen to her tales of transfer, but readers, she bought me a beer! Our book club gathered at Trapeze, a bar with a beer list that looks like a novella. Why is it that you realize how much you really like and enjoy people's company after they move? I wish I had eaten with Mrs. Carter or asked her more about books and stuff like that when she resided in Athens. At least I get to stalk her through blogging!
WEDNESDAY: Awards lunch at my job, in a time of financial crisis for education systems, should we be having an awards lunch? Of course not, did that stop me from going, of course not either. I deserve my free meal and moreso, I got to award the third annual Mary Jane Coberth Memorial Award to one of my MSW students, for whom it was well deserved! The MJC award was started... (are you ready for this readers?) when I was an Amazing Student for my Univ and a guy I know through Dance Marathon (who if Seth possessed half the manners he has, I will consider myself a champion mother) showed his mother, who was a former MSW grad, she made a donation to the School (of Social work) in my name. WOW, right? I had never heard of such a thing. She finds out that I plan to use the money for suicide awareness & prevention, and she ends up adding to her contribution so that I could create the MJC Award for 5 years! Insanity, right? The MJC is for MSW student who are looking to work in the area of suicide awareness & prevention & mental health. And... I am pretty proud of it. It makes me feel like I am a little more like Ms. Waltman, who made the donation, because if I could possess her gumption and character, I would consider myself a class act.
See readers, I told you that would be intense. For the awards lunch, we had tortellini, green beans, ham & peach cobbler. It was not much to write about. I get a picture of the MJC award winner up her soon as I get the picture!
THURSDAY: This day was a day of amazing women. First, I had a tasty biscuit when I was invited to go to breakfast with some people who are talking about preparing for their Haiti educational relief trip. Mary, she's cool enough to get to keep her own name, has been going to Haiti for tens of years. She is a nurse, preacher, philantrophist, and smooth talker all balled up into one incredible Southern women. She's got a mouth on her that I love and she had the ability to put two very distinguished faculty in their places... real quick. I wonder how I can make her my new bff?
Next was Dorothy, she gets to keep her name too & there is a building named after her, so it's already well known, who was kind enough to let me tag along on her Meals on Wheels route. She had been on this route for almost a quarter of a century. She knows all her clients/recipients/vistees and dutifully and selflessly inquires about each one. I learned about slumlords and hospice and got good advice from a good mom. She was humble in that she played herself so cool, but I felt like she had a great deal of power inside her like a thunderstorm brewing. I think that may be even more true, because the dark clouds we had all morning did not break & rain until we were finished and pulling back into the agency, as if she was threaten the heavens that they better not rain on our delivery morning!
That was my food week. My only non-food effecting me stuff was that I will have to postpone my comps and prospective class due to the big head stuff, it just gives me more time to make it quality & something I can be proud of. And... that I currently am again without a camera. Wah wah. I have a busted camera chip reader & I have to get a new one, which can be more money than I will have for this month. Yeah for first mortgage payment ever!