Homeless Food

DSC_0096A picture of my pack, the green bag and the new blue one are close to the same size, but they show you the dimensions of what you are working with, and what I had to lift.

The biggest contributor to your pack weight will be of course, unfortunately food.

Cans will add up the pounds very fast and as it is the main form of food storage. Aluminum is the most common material to house food and often times if you have no place to cook then you will not be able to easily get things like microwave dinners that may be lighter but without equipment won’t provide what is needed. Things in glass will often be at risk without some packing technique involved.

Campers may have a bit more luck keeping things from breaking at camp but the trade off will be the security of such items, because of some other people see some food or expensive items out you may as well sign it goodbye as someone else will steal it.

Food banks when you go will often fill our bags to the gills so make sure not only do you get food but you get a power lift workout which you need sometime after so many calories. Hauling it in a car will take some muscle and hauling back to wherever you live in a forest or thicket of blackberry vines.

What will be some of the things eaten going from the homeless population.

Cereal – Whether in bags or boxes this will be away a good number of the homeless get some form of nutrition it is easy, often light and needs no cooking with a variety of flavors to keep from getting boring or maddening.

Premade meals – Despite microwave meals being out of play for a lot what is made but the supermarket deli’s and boxed up kept cold in the refrigerated case will be something that will not be common, but it will be enough to give some difference and sometimes more protein. That can be rare in cases because most of the protein sources will be hard to carry without refrigeration.

Chili and soups – Despite being in cans this can be either something that gives a meal right out of the can as long as it isn’t one that needs dilution. One of the things that can provide vegetables when you are out in the rain.

Sandwiches – Something you can make to give you a couple days because food fatigue will make you go even madder after a period, ask anyone who has had to eat the same thing for months, it can make you do anything to get something new. Pb and J or hand and cheese, tuna with green onion was a favorite of mine.

Wraps is another thing that can be tossed in under the sandwich rule despite what I feel in them holding all the fillings better. They also follow a couple other rules really in both cases you will want to follow these rules

No produce is going to be on it if it will be held for a while. This is about time and when you have a bunch of things that could be sitting in a plastic bag for a few hours at minimum and a couple days tops there is a lot of things that wont work including most greens. Onion isn’t the worst and neither are bell peppers under any chance if you put anything leafy on them when you make it then you will have to remember to eat those quickly. Remembering to not do so may leave you meeting slime leaves in what would be in else wise delicious and filling meal.

Meats are something else that may give you a few more unexpected options as often many will be cooked through for the sake of cleanliness, giving it a longer food life, and less spoilage. Chili falls back into this as it is often cooked through before canning no matter what the brand is.

Fruit in cans often is bound with either syrup or juice and depending on what it is you can still use it. Juice will be a refresher giving you stamina at times when you are feeling tired. Syrup from fruit cans I often use to sweeten jars of peanut butter for a little different flavor. One of those things to make it more palatable. Either of the options there always things to do with it. Drink it, mix it, make dressings for other things. The only things that will stop you is imagination and equipment.

Even after getting some food you still need to break up the monotony and sometimes fast food fits that role with often discount deals and helps bolster use by use of restrooms and a warm bright place to eat. Readers can figure out why this is a bad thing, whether it be sugar, salt, or fat you do have to use it as a spice and not the building bricks of your food.

Working with food allergies in these situations will me immensely worse. The problem is that many of the items that will be easiest to eat will be also those made in places that are not making solely that one item. This is how some items that have no ingredients of say soy for example will still have it as a warning. Machines may work on soy without working on that specific item. For example fish, nuts, eggs are all things that could also be under this set up of not in the item but still being worked on by the machines in later moments. For those looking often any food warning will be near the nutritional info saying such.

Nutritional information is on the label to the side of the logo and is in a table breaking down different values like carbs, fat and protein. Often time if it says supplemental info then it is not available to be bought with food stamps. Another little piece of info often in the same area would be the words “cooked thoroughly” Often on meat products this means that whatever is in it has been cooked to a point safe for consumption. Finding tat the special burger patties had been precooked allowed me to make a pretty awesome patty melt out on the benches that I would make warm when possible.

When you have the chance see what is cooked thoroughly, one thing often is Chef Boyardee food is cooked thoroughly meaning you can not only eat it but the use of pop top lids means you do not need to have a can opener. Lunches and snacks when you go to work will have to be often done out of deals or shopping out of the discount rack. Keeping track when the supermarkets nearby put things on discount will give you the best chance for good options because while packing or camping you will often not have food for long.

If you can work out a safe space to put non spoilable food, it would behoove you to do so. This means you can collect at more opportunity leaving you to also have somewhere to drop weight but in doing so you will lose money for the storage if you have no other options. Always something to think about.

In any case, stay strong and keep going on.

Ten Things I have Learned In Kitchens

Learning in kitchens on the west coast has allowed me to look at a world that despite the many shows on the subject still do not do a good job showing off some of the most interesting things in the cooking world.

  1. Cooks do not get paid well and often times the wait staff will be paid more because of the tips. A line cook will often get paid the same as the wait staff with some of the better places being only a dollar or two above.
  1. Waitstaff or the front of house is a love it or hate it relationship. Simply because many times those tips that the waiters say they need to survive well in some states that is the case in Oregon though it is normal to get paid a full minimum wage and then have your tips go on top of it leading to many waiters getting paid more then the sous chef.
  2. No, we do not spit or screw up the food. It is the very rare person who feels they need to do that and most kitchens will send them out on a group of pitchforks. The food is something you do not screw with if you want an easier life in the kitchen.
  1. The personalities are that varied, and despite all the hours being worked it is rare for someone to just be about food. Some people will be marksmen, others will be writers, others work on the care of poisonous plants. Calling them weird is one of the fastest ways to get a figurative backhand for your efforts.
  1. I have to this day not met a cook who cannot hold their booze. It is not a requirement, but you can bet if you have worked a few years in a kitchen then you most likely have some tolerance.
  1. Coming in just before closing especially after a busy night will have the curses of the families of those cooks sent against you in any form. Within a half hour to close they want people out so everyone can go home to try and sleep.
  1. If your waitperson says the kitchen screwed up and that is why it is taking so much time then they forget to put the order in. Nine times out of ten anytime the waitstaff asks for more time it is because front of house botched something or massive mechanical failure usually because front of house botched something.
  1. Saying the line “I went to culinary school.” as an evidence to skill will make everyone hate you. Do not say it. Shut up and do it the way they ask. After things have died down, as why it is done that way and most time you will find most above you a lot more welcome to explain.
  2. Saying the line “Bobby Flay did it.” as an excuse as to why you are doing something will get you the next opportunity to find the left handed spatulas. They are right next to the backup cans of steam.
  3. Never as a customer go back in the kitchen. If you are the pope then be ready to bow to who is running the kitchen at the time. No matter how many yelp reviews you have written going back there will get you often kicked out or at minimum made a fool.

It is nice to have learned so much over my years because it is another world in the kitchens, and something so strange is often just between a couple sets of doors and usually a bar. I may write more about it later, enjoy the list and have a good day.

Emergency Chocolate Protocol For PC Gaming

Emergency Chocolate Protocol For PC Gaming

The Christmas releases could be out or your loved one wants to get a good session on an important day that may or may not rhyme with “blanniversery”, and you don’t have enough to get through the day. We will make French hand-rolled Chocolate truffles. It is okay if you do not have a whole lot of equipment because the important part is as follows and it is to make the ganache.

8 oz of Dark Chocolate Chips

5 oz or 2/3 cup of Heavy Cream

A sauce pot, this will be for the cream.

A stove

A large plastic bowl able to handle hot cream and the freezer.

A spatula or a whisk

A small bowl

Plate for finishing

Fridge or freezer space for the bowl

First you want to put your pot on a burner at medium high heat before pouring your cream in the pot. While this is heating up place your chocolate in the bowl. If you wanted to add little flavorings you can add it to the cream now. We want the cream to get to a good simmer. You want to look at the cream see the small bubbles around the side of the pot and look in the center of the cream to notice that it is bubbling at the same speed.

Pour your cream of the chocolate. Fold the chocolate and the cream together while it is still hot. The heat of the cream will melt the chocolate. This can count as a workout when you do bigger batches. When it smooth in color and free of lumps then you are done. If you go slow enough there is still lumps in it, but the color is smooth then that is fine as well a little bit of hardened chocolate in a chocolate treat will not ruin anything.

What is in this bowl is called ganache, and it is about as well for coffee and ice cream as you think it would be. Let it cool and chill it for a two hours minimum. Freezer works as well if you find you have warm hands. While that chills we need to get to some toppings we can roll little chocolate balls in so that we do not make our keyboards a mess.

Chopped nuts, coconut, pulverized hard candies, dried and finely chopped fruit are all things you can consider. Classically it is done with cocoa powder so for the sake of explanation take a small bowl and fill it a third of the way with your item of choice. Pull the ganache after it has set before rolling to just bigger then a quarter. Drop your creations in the coating making sure they are completely coated before putting them on the plate.

Let the plate chill in the fridge until serving time. Works well as a snack when you wreck your opponent or need a snack after being stomped in game. Makes two dozen.

Drinking time

After a long day working, writing, working on business plans and just overall tiring myself out I like to have an adult beverage. My roommate tends to join me in such ventures and I thought I should share what we have going in the cups when we try to change the world from our little apartment.

Kraken’s Revenge:

2 shots Kraken rum, 1 shot Triple Sec, 1 scoop vanilla bean ice cream, top with the root bear of your choice.

Comrade Kraken:

2 shots Kraken, 1 shot Triple Sec, a half cup of root beer before topping off with heavy cream.

Redneck Margarita

2 shots Patron Orange, half a capful of cream de menthe, a cup of Mountain Dew and top off with ginger ale .

It should alwys be said to drink responsibly. It is never fun when you get hung over. I have more coming this week but let’s get some fun going before we get to the meat of the matter for the week.I just thought that as goofy as it is to try these out if you have the time.

Excerpt – Time, Fire, and Cuisine

To this day I cannot say how this classifies. It does not have recipes on every page like a cookbook, but it does have a flow I think so it just remains as a food book. Which if you do not know seems to be a good way to surmise my writings so far. I write about food, how food reacts in the world, how it can be made, how it can be tasted, and really I think you get a better appreciation for it that way. Otherwise it is just another food porno in the world where you can get just get a good camera and some clay and tell people what you created.

From one book to two, with pages that will be switched in and out before it is done.  Then begins the illustrations slash the getting the agents to look at it. If they like it then great if not then I will just have to learn and move on

December 1st – At the beginning

Writing this “little project” has been at the best of times vexing and at its worst one of the fastest routes to a migraine I have had to go on. Trying to figure out what recipes would be best suited while balancing the stories and techniques were difficult with some of the experiences as unique as any piece of fiction.

The reason those pages are there though are to help shed light on the kinds of people and situations that may have gone one. To eat a restaurant is a complex issue of so many things done well that sometimes it is just as much fun to watch the whole thing as it is to just eat what is on the plate. In every kitchen around the world there are many people trying to make their way through life from the server to the chef each with a story to tell. Since you cannot make it through the world without listening to a few you might as well enjoy the ones you do listen to.

Now, with the last month of this project I can truly say that with all the techniques, experiences, terms, ideas, and of course recipes there should be something for everyone to learn one thing at least. If I managed that I would call this a success whether it is how to plate, cook, do things on the fly or even my own little opinion in a grand world.

We all seem devoted to the end product without thinking about everything that made it get there. It seems to happen to me whenever I do go out and I have a great plate that I think of the stories that plate of food told of how it got there to the hands making it. Machiavelli, the man often credited to such a school of thinking, is dead. If people sold in to it as much as they say then at least he would have found a way to continue breathing.

Enjoy the last portion of this book as much as I did writing it, even if it just a couple laughs at my own opinion in life.

December 31st – Final Test

This book hopefully has taught some valuable lessons or at the very least made you chuckle once. Now for the exam. In previous tests you had to use what you gleamed to make a meal. After your finished you need to compare to the dish you had to make at the start. For this time make three dishes from previous experience two of them have already been chosen.

For the first dish: Remake your first test dish and improve upon it using everything you have learned.

Made:_____________________________________

Second dish will be the dish incorporating recipes or formulas in your own plates. Improve upon this recipe and truly make it your own.

Made:________________________________________

The last dish will be your own. Have a friend pick one protein, one starch and one vegetable without your knowledge. Cook for them in the span of one hour a dish a full composed plate of food with the three main ingredients and whatever you have in your pantry.

Made:_______________________________________

Friend: ______________________________________

Protein:______________________________________

Starch:______________________________________

Vegetables:___________________________________

See how far you have come in the span of a single year. Every day you spent reading this either for a few minutes or few a couple hours. Learning what can be in the kitchens as well as the techniques and a good many recipes can be enough for a book. If anything I hope this will not sit loveless on a shelf instead being carted around as a fun read or even as a foot stool because this thing was much bigger then I thought at the beginning and I am proud to see it done .

Excerpt – Time, Fire, and Cuisine

For some reason this salad is on most of the menus I see so after a while I just broke down the plates in to numbers I can handle. Having the walnuts made in larger batches means you can play with them in other things like cereal or your go to grazing snack. For those who do not like blue cheese then I have used a good brie as a substitute and a little more salt on the salad overall to balance. Salads really get the short end of the stick because to do it well you must compose a dish without so many of the long cooking methods found in normal entrees.

Revising wise I think my grammar could be done by a sixth grade who just had his first Jack and Coke but that’s okay because it will be a funny point to start from. Everyone should have that point where they start a project where they can look back and just laugh at how bad it was with their friends.

November 6th – Blue pear salad

For the greens you want equal parts of mache and arugula lettuce as well as whole spinach leaves. Check all of it for rotting bits as well as bugs before putting it down to work on the rest of your items. You can do this in a main bowl where everything else will be added or you can save it all in different smaller containers so you can toss it all and go quickly later in the day.

1:1:1 Arugula to mache lettuce to salad spinach

In the case of the vinaigrette you want to use your best oil and vinegar. A good pair to shoot for is a virgin or extra virgin olive oil matched with either champagne or balsamic vinegar. Each will work with the other ingredients. Make sure to whisk it or even build it in your food processor to keep longer before breaking.

3:1 Good oil to champagne or balsamic vinegar

Mix well before putting away. Add some walnuts to the amount of a quarter of the total greens. Before adding them straight to the greens you can candy them with a mix of butter and brown sugar in the ratio of six to one. Melt the butter before tossing your sugar in to dissolve.

4:1 Total greens to walnuts

6:1 Butter to brown sugar to candy your walnuts

Next take some blue cheese to half of your walnuts to add some salt to the dish. Make sure to not burn your nuts as you candy them.

2:1 Walnuts to blue or Gorgonzola cheese

Toss everything together before topping and enjoying. Finish everything with pear fans cut on top.

Did an extra one since summer is coming around a nice salad wouldn’t hurt.

Excerpt – Time, Fire, and Cuisine

Coming from the Pacific Northwest there just has to be some recipes with seafood. This one is a good way to do any white meat fish and it doesn’t take million dollars to make either. Chicken works well for those who do not do well with fish. On previous pages you can also see how people are supposed to grow so that nothing is impossible and after reading my books you could cook a lot better. That would be the plan at least

October 6th – Fish a la Piccata

Translating loosely to miller style fish this works best with white meat fish fillet. Trout is the recipe here but halibut and cod can work if you so chose. Any white meat fish is acceptable as long as it can hold through a pan frying. The fat of choice for this recipe is a blended olive oil or clarified butter. Pat the fish fillet dry before dusting with an all purpose flour. In the pan an ounce of your choice of fat should be simmering from the heat.

Place your fish in the fat to let it cook. If one side has skin then you will want to let it cook more on one side then the other. On the other hand skinless fillet can be found although they do break up easier. As the meat cooks you will want to make a sauce to accompany it.

Mince six small capers with a heavy pinch of parsley so that you are left with equal portions of each.

1:1:1 Minced capers to minced parsley to lemon juice

After your fish cooks dump the sauce ingredients in to saute for a moment. Next you will want to remove it from the heat while swirling a pair of small half ounce chunks. Monte Au Buerre in full affect your sauce should be warm and ready while your fish has rested slightly before plating.

Pour a small portion of the sauce under the fish as it rests against your starch and vegetable of choice before ladling a small amount over the top of it. It should have a nice looking dark colored sear that can hold up to the sauce.

If the salty flavor of the briny capers isn’t really up your alley minced sweet pickle or cornuchons can be supplemented for a portion or for the entire part of the capers.

Excerpt- Time, Fire, and Cuisine

Sometimes when you need to impress people you need to just get them some food. When you use an alcohol for cooking it is always good to use something of a mid shelf booze. A lower one if you need to burn it off first never get the bottom shelf stuff as most times that stuff is not fit to remove fingernail polish let alone drink.

September 17th -Fruit Romanoff

This dessert comes from much the same line as the zabayon sauce. Both are sauces that work to best show the texture and flavors of fresh fruit. Made from whipped cream folded in to an equal part of sour cream this is easier then to whisk heavy zabayon.

1:1 Heavy cream before whipping to sour cream

Mix the sour cream with a shot of brandy for every cup. Then add an equal part of brown sugar to brandy to the sour cream.

8:1:1 Sour cream to brandy to brown sugar

Whisk the heavy cream until it reaches medium peaks. If you have an electric hand held mixer I would suggest using it especially if your not to strong in the elbow or are not making large batches at a time.

Fold your whipped cream in to your sour cream in thirds as to not lose any of the air you worked to put in to it. For making desserts for events it handles well in if it is made the day of the event. If you hold it for more then twelve hours the bacteria in the sour cream will continue to do their work making your sauce more tart and throwing off the balance. It becomes a sweet crème fraiche and is definitely usable just not for the original purpose.

You can use it to layer different fruit between layers of sauce. Compotes of pear and apple can also be used as well as any small dice in a small amount of sauce. Being dairy based it gives you a lot to work with for what else you can use. Other alcohols in reduced form, cheeses, other fruit, some vegetables, classic dessert sauces, chocolate. Being only slightly sweet makes it an easy tool when creating desserts to your own will.

This is not a bad desert when time is working against you and you have some energy to spare. Warmer months and fresh fruit with a homemade sauce

Excerpt – Time, Fire, and Cuisine

One of my first friends in college was a Hawaiian girl and between my accent. I sound like a complete bumpkin accent and her pigeon speak it seemed we could understand each other without having to talk to anyone else. The difference is akin to Moxxi from Borderlands with her normal voice and her accent. Below was the first dish she told me about back on the islands.

It was also with her that we talked what kind of books and what we hated about cookbooks nowadays. They seemed like glory shot filled food porn magazines and they did not teach or better someone’s cooking ability. Having this up now on my own blog kinda makes me look back at the path to get here and to any would be authors wanting to start a book of any kind. Be in it for the long haul.

July 9th – Spam musubi

Knowing that musubi is a Hawaiian dish on default we are going to pair it with something that is about as integrated in to the island cuisine, spam. Looking at the can some people may not enjoy the taste of such a thing and if that is the case you can remove the spam for some spicy Portuguese sausage.

Start your preparation by taking some good sushi rice or in the case that none can be found some medium grain rice cooked so that it is slightly sticky. This can be done by finding a rice grain with a lot of starch and only rinsing it once in cold water quickly. Like the Japanese sushi you will need to create a blend of your favorite vinegars to flavor the rice. I prefer mixing a batch of vinegar that is a quarter of the dry rice by volume. My vinegar mix starts off at 3:2 rice wine vinegar to apple cider vinegar.

After mixing up the vinegars in a container and your rice is cooked you want to remove the rice from the pan in to a bowl preferably wooden. Wooden bowls, not being so popular though may be hard to get to so just relax before taking your favorite mixing bowl out.

Before you flavor the rice though on a cutting board take your spam, remove it from the can and cut in to slices as big as your middle and ring finger combined. Begin cooking these in a pan letting them crisp up a little before topping your rice.

Place your rice in to a bowl and with a firm spatula begin breaking up the rice until you get a half dozen large clumps. Then slowly pour in your vinegar while breaking down the sticky ball so that they have a slightly tacky surface while appearing moist.

Shape your sushi to be held with two fingers. Begin shaping your race making sure to wet your hands as the rice will stick to your palms less. Finish by topping your creation with your fried spam or sauteed sausage. Matches well with anything teriyaki flavored as well as a light seaweed salad.

Sushi rice – 4:1 dry rice to vinegar mix by volume

Vinegar mix – 3:2 rice wine vinegar to apple cider vinegar.

As a Rough draft grows and morph in to different projects it is always nice to see what needs to be done to finish it up. Right now the dates have to go, basic grammar and spelling checks because I was too sleep deprived to hammer the fine details. Lengthening and pictures of course. Still same rules as apply with these excerpts as the last set. They are all first draft and we have along way to go on them.

 

 

July 2nd – American Cuisine

American cuisine is more then the few chefs on television all the time. In fact even thinking they are representing American cuisine is like saying the trail blazers are great foot ball players only because they play a pro sport. Many may even see it as a joke on words like jumbo shrimps or common sense. Exploring my home country’s cuisine can maybe get a better view of your own home whether its another part of America or another country altogether.

Some of the basic points of this part of the book will be learning how ingredients made their way to each section of land. Distinguishing how the food was grown, sold, or brought in speaks to the way things were back in the era where such foods were new as well as how they were valued. For many of the older recipes certain things had to be done so that the food would be able to hold longer with less effort. Back in older eras such as the wild west or the pioneer rush eating food was a had to do action and not so much as something to be fussed over much. Flashy sauces and more costly ingredients making their way in to the dishes of the era were more found in the establishments popular in larger cities. Moving to the more rural areas such things may only be made rarely or bought in to save time while celebrating.

Respecting these people who in the untamed times of each section could make simple food taste so good should be revered as nowadays we may face different problems such as the loss of flavor and the increase of artificial chemicals. Time was not so liberally implanted as it took time for the families of the past to pickle and preserve everything they could while thinking up the recipes to get the most bang for their buck.

We all need to try and make the best food we can so we can live the best lives we can. This does not take an over abundance of food though which is something we must learn within our borders.