Things I’ve Been Liking Lately

by Cameron Schaefer on February 11, 2010

I realized today as I went through some of my past posts that my blog has gotten a bit too serious for my liking…and I imagine some of yours. Philosophical, economic and political debates are great, but if they aren’t peppered with some lighthearted fun they can make the heart hard. Even Tolkien and Lewis had a pint and cigar in hand as they approached the meaning of life.

While I enjoy sharing the things I’m thinking about, I don’t always get a chance to share more simple things, like what I like and dislike, the music I find myself coming back to again and again, cool art, great food and wine and the random products, trinkets, and designs that catch my eye and make me smile.

So, let’s put on hold the thoughts concerning AfPak strategy, peak oil, the philosophy of government and other black holes of thought and I’ll share with you the things I’ve been liking lately AND maybe even convince you that, yes, I do have a life.

Cooking through Ad Hoc at Home

Marelize bought me this cookbook for Christmas and I’ve been cooking up a storm ever since. While I don’t have much previous experience, Thomas Keller, decorated American chef and restaurateur, has laid out his cookbook in such a way that a novice can put together some surprisingly tasty home cooked dishes.

I made it a goal for 2010 to cook 10 dinners for the family.  It’s only February and I’ve already knocked out 5:

-Marinated Skirt Steak

-Pan Roasted Chicken with Sweet Sausage and Peppers

-Catalan Beef Stew

-Lentil and Sweet Potato Soup

-Blowtorch Prime Rib*** yes, I bought a real blowtorch to do this one

AND I had to try one of the desserts as well, so…

-Banana Bread Pudding

Bose QuietComfort 2 Acoustic Noise Canceling Headphones

Before purchasing these with some gift cards and birthday money I shook my head at the price and figured there was no way it could be worth it…I was wrong. In the words of Ferris Buller, these headphones are “…so choice. If you have the means, I highly recommend picking one up.”

2006 Chateau Pesquie Cotes du Ventoux Terrasses

Chateau Pesquie is a family estate located in the Southern Rhone Valley. I came across one of their delicious wines, the Cotes du Ventoux Terrasses, at my local Tacoma Boys and have become quite smitten with it.

This wine is a $13 bottle of wine drinks much more like a $30-$50 bottle. A dark purple wine with a jammy fruit nose. It tastes like a nice mix of dark fruits with some spices and a little bit of earthiness that makes it much more complex and interesting than 99% of wines in its price range.

The gentleman at Tacoma Boys who recommended this wine to me said I should buy a case. Of course I displayed my saavy consumerist skills by making some subtle comment about how I’d have to check it out for myself before buying an entire case….well, I’m writing this wishing I had listened to that vino sage.

So, there you have it, a few things that I’ve been liking lately. I hope you found this post fun and interesting. Let me know what you think. A refreshing change of pace OR an annoying distraction?

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Newlywed & Unemployed February 12, 2010 at 1:15 pm

Nice change of pace, Schaefer. Thank you! Not that I can’t keep up with the rest, but I was drawn to your blog by so much more.

Have you seen a book called Cookwise? I got it for Christmas and it’s about the science behind cooking. Why proteins and yeasts do what they do, etc. but it’s a cook book, too. I’ve enjoyed it because now I understand a lot more about Why a recipe works (and why it failed for me..) and can become more comfortable with eyeballing and substituting.

Also, Gary recommends a wine called 14 Hands merlot. It’s an eastern WA wine and they also make cab siv, reisling and chardonnay.

Farouk February 16, 2010 at 12:48 am

its a good idea to get more personal with your readers, i love apple pies and shrimps :)

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