|Posted by creative-fancy on November 4, 2016 at 5:10 PM||comments (6)|
Our local grocerystore overwaters their produce and items are likely to arrive home wet. I eat radishes as a low-calory snack on my morning break and was often discomfeited by the tendancy for the folliage with which radishes generally arrive, to become rotten in the fridge. I’d been in the habit recently of pulling off the leafy stuff and composting it then washing the radishes.
More recently though I got wondering about the edible potential of radish greens. Neither the donkey nor the chickens will eat them but I found that when steamed, these leaves and stems make a tasty addition to any tossed vegetable meddley.
The radishes still could languish forgotten in a bag, behind stuff, in the fridge so one day I dropped the newly-separated radishes into a jar of dill pickel juice. After several days the little globes pick up a pleasantly soured taste. With repeated usage, the pickle brine becomes dilute so with every three or four radish bunches I pour off maybe a half cup of juice and replace it with vinigar. My radishes don’t go bad any longer and we’re eating what used to go back into the soil. I think that’s a definition of win-win!
|Posted by creative-fancy on October 3, 2016 at 4:35 AM||comments (1)|
|Posted by creative-fancy on September 30, 2016 at 2:10 PM||comments (0)|
A Tale of two yogurts - part 2
Soy Milk and Soy Yogurt
I recently found that I could do exactly the same thing with soy milk. I don’t like soy yogurt as well as I like cow or goat yogurt but I’m choosing at this time to stay away from dairy products so here is how I make soy milk.
4 ounces (around a half cup) of raw soy beans.
Look for them at an health food store, co-op or ask a local feed store if they can provide them.
Nylon stocking, knee length
You can get them at your grocer’s in boxes of five pairs or something and they’re useful for lots of things. You can even wear them if you want!
Place a half cup of beans into a large bowl or pan and fill with cold tap water. Let stand for at least 8 hours. After this time, drain water off of beans and let that go down the drain or into the flower bed. I use a colander.
Place soaked, drained beans into your blender, fill to near the lip with cold water, put on the lid and process until you have something smooth and relatively thick. Sometimes it takes a while and you may want to use a spatula from time to time (with blender turned off) to move unprocessed chunks toward the bottom of the blender jar.
When you judge it’s done, move your bean slurry off the blender stand, take your magic knee sock and stretch it over the open mouth of the jar. Holding with one hand, tip the jar over your sauce pan. With the other, shake the jar a bit, try to coax all of the slurry down into the stocking.
Remove the sock from the jar and hold the stocking shut, twisting it is good. From here on it’s a process of kneading, gently squeezing the mash within the stocking to get the bean juice out of the pulp. This takes a little while but is sort of transcendental and even a little bit sexy so it can stand in for yoga or meditation or something.
When you have the pulp inside the stocking at a consistency about like homemade salt clay, put the sauce pan on about medium heat and cover. Turn the stocking inside out and dump the bean leavings into a bowl. Now run, go feed that to your chickens. (I did tell you to buy chickens did I not?)
Bring the virgin soy milk to a gentle boil and continue cooking for ten minutes. This will kill off some unwanted organisms and lessen the amount of gas you might experience on drinking the stuff. When done you can pour the now “experienced” soy milk into a jar or pitcher and refrigerate. It’s funny how foamy it is at first.
Should you want to make soy yogurt, cool it to body temperature and follow the yogurt recipe above including the starter. Soy yogurt is good in veggie stroganoff, or mixed with dry onion soup mix as a dip for baked corn chips.
Soy is controversial. It does contain phyto or plant estrogens, chemicals which mimmic the female hormone that some of us manufacture independently. Like regular estrogen, the plant type has been accused of causing certain kinds of cancer and it may contribute to infertility in males. I tell women to use soy or flax seed meal in their bread because it will cause their husbands to talk with them more freely but I’m joking—-mostly. As with everything else, it’s probably best to use soy in moderation. A serving or two per day perhaps.
|Posted by creative-fancy on September 30, 2016 at 2:05 PM||comments (0)|
A Tale of two yogurts - part 1
Making your own soy milk, and both standard and soy yogurts
I want to talk about three things in this little article. These are all things that have been known about by lots of people, but not by most people, and generally not all found in the same place. I’ll start by telling you how milk yogurt is made by me at least; and I’m lazy and like to do as little work as possible. In part 2 I'll tell you how to make soy yogurt, and the milk it's made from.
Moo Yogurt (Or Baa)
(vacuum flask) as wide a mouth as you can find
Milk, cow or goat, preferably not that low-fat stuff.
Powdered milk if you wish a thicker yogurt.
A yogurt starter
(just plain unflavored, not vanilla yogurt from the store. I usually use Greek culture because I admire Socrates.)
pour a pint or more of milk into a sauce pan, place over low heat. Stirr frequently till it heats to about body temperature. If you have a thermometer, 95 F or 35 C is good, but you can use your sense of touch to test that it’s not really not nor cold. Think tepid bathtub, or baby bottle.
When desired temperature has been achieved, fill your thermos with hot water from the tap to preheat.
Stir a couple of table spoons of your starter yogurt into your warm milk. This is harder to do than one expects. A bit of spoon work is wanted.
Now pour the water out of the thermos and the milk and yogurt mixture in. Screw the lid on tightly. I like to wrap the thermos in a bath towl for further insulation. Put it on a counter or in some other warm place and leave it alone! Overnight or even 24 hours if you wish. If you live in a cold climate, you can set it on top of the water heater or on top of your fridge. Let it sit overnight.
(Note If you want thicker yogurt, a few tablespoons of powdered milk can be stirred into the whole milk prior to heating.)
That should be all. By morning, the yogurt should be a smooth, fairly solid mass.
You need no special thermostatic yogurt maker or mail order starters. Slice in a peach or throw in some raspberries and you’ll have something just as good and a lot cheaper than those syrupy 5-ounce tubs they sell in the store.
|Posted by creative-fancy on November 5, 2014 at 11:50 PM||comments (0)|
I’m currently reading the second volume of a biography Robert A. Heinlein in Dialogue with his Century by William Patterson.
It’s interesting how hard he had to fight to keep any semblance of works he originally conceived and most of his juvenile novels were evidently changed a good deal due to editorial intervention. Though always patriotic and essentially pro-military, Heinlein actually saw himself as a traditional liberal until the mid 1950s or so when he began to feel the U.S. government was drifting away from liberal values and going increasingly to the left and even enabling communism. At that point he resigned from the Democratic Party and voted for candidates whom he considered less odeous than others which is essentially what I do.
Also though he participated in some meetings and correspondence around the formation of the John Birch Society, he requested his name be struck from the membership roll quite early on because he considered the organization to be misguided and it’s leadership to be unacceptably controlling. One of many valuable takeaways for me from the book was the notion that traditional American Liberalism is really quite a bit different for what passes as liberalism today.
Most of us I think, believe more or less in womens’ rights, that people shouldn’t be enslaved, that there should be help for persons less fortunate and a lot of other essentially altruistic notionsbut there are so many radical agendas today masquerading as liberal that I’ve always been suspicious of the L-word.
Right now I’m to about 1959 in the biography and he’s written most of his juveniles by this time. One of his last, Have Space Suit Will Travel, was the first RAH book I ever red and in some ways, one of my favorites, mostly because of the discussion of space suit operation which I’ve used with other sources to design life support gear for my own stories and practical designs.
|Posted by creative-fancy on November 3, 2014 at 5:25 PM||comments (0)|
Presentation given at DSHS Diversity Conference
October 30, 2014
Hi, I’m Dave and I’m a recovering sighted person but I try to be at least two things at once! Blindness isn't generally as much of a barrier for me as what others do with it; the assumptions, sometimes neglecting to notice I’m even there. When I was young, people talked about my vision being restored someday. When I was in grad school a man stated, as if fact, that I was working off a debt from a previous life. A woman I’ve known said we choose our adversities in order to grow spiritually and strangely enough, I think I agree most with her.
No I didn’t choose at age 5 to be blind but I think it’s possible at some point, perhaps elsewhere or elsewhen , I chose life goals which caused me to pass through this process. I’ve always had a sense of destiny; of things I should accomplish, things I should become.
At the University of Washington as the only male member of The Society of Women Engineers, another member asked if I’d help her go through card files (remember them?) in The Dean’s Office to identify female engineering students. I said the spirit was willing but the flesh wasn’t quite up to it. She was embarrassed but I was smiling because she’d forgotten I was blind. My being male was enough to wrap her head around.
On another occasion a member said she didn’t want men coming to a particular event. I asked “What about me?” She said “You’re different. You’re a member.” And yes, I realized, I was. Something of which I’d had glimmerings but hadn’t quite come to terms with, I did in large measure see myself as a feminine person, though others didn’t.
A number of years later, at a gathering of The Center for Christian Feminist Ministry, a Seattle based spirituality group, I sat in a circle of my sisters listening to one then another talk of her poor self-image, her feelings of being devalued, her diminished sense of worth. As I listened I had a strong feeling of love for them and I said “I wish you could see yourself the way I see you, because to me you’re beautiful and worthwhile people.” Since that time I’ve not regretted being blind.
Now in the day to day business of documenting, being in meetings, answering phone calls; the big picture can become blurred but I do try to ground myself every day with my major life goals and I try to bring a measure of that love and the spirit of feminism I shared with that circle, to my work with clients.
I had a preponderantly female case load and when once in a while a woman (though sometimes a man) comments on the Goddess I wear, this is usually someone who’s been abused and has experienced emotional hardship. They tell me they felt safe when they saw The Mother. Whenever I work with a domestic violence or rape victim I tell that person that I am honored to meet and know her (or sometimes him.) When I see my folks in the community they almost always come up and greet me warmly.
There’s a rather humorous side to being 'Differently Insighted' you could call it. One day a young coworker came to me. “There’s a guy applying for food benefits and he’s wearing a dress.” I said “yes sometimes that happens and we provide services to him just like anyone else.” “Yes,” she said “but he’s a man and he’s wearing a woman’s dress!” I said what a person wears likely doesn’t prevent us from providing food.
When in 1986 I told Feminist Pastor Jan Anderson I wanted to help abused women in the same way that others had helped me; she said in effect “Don’t come planning to help women. Women can help themselves. Men helping women is the cause of much of the problems we deal with.” (Okay, not what I’d wanted to hear but honestly stated.) At that point I determined to hand people tools.
Hand someone a tool and she can throw it down, give it away, sell it or pick it up and build something. No one is being condescended to. Nobody loses anything. That’s my first take-away point. In January I’m teaching a tool using class for the Grant County Housing Authority and I’ll give away a cordless drill as a door prize.
An engineering prof many years ago, told me “You have a problem visualizing.” I said “No, I have a problem communicating.” I may have an entire machine in my head but I have trouble making You see it.” I think I’ve demonstrated that point. My wife of 36 years and I live on a 3-acre farm where I’ve built fences, chicken coops and a good deal else. I’ve now written a software drawing program which can enable interested blind persons to draw most things they might want to build.
My other take-away today is therefore, if a problem exists it’s nature may not be as obvious as first impressions indicate and what may be a problem in one sense may actually turn out to be a solution to another, perhaps unexpected problem.
I know that had I not been both blind and what I call Gender Different I’d not have the insights I have today. Others can arrive at them too but it’s how I came here.
I thank you for hearing me today.
|Posted by creative-fancy on October 18, 2014 at 3:10 AM||comments (0)|
Elections are again on the near horizon. Incumbents are going merrily along as if they should continue in what has become for many, a lifetime subsidy. Let’s not forget that not so many months ago, denizens of both parties paralyzed (our) Federal government due to their obstinant refusal to work together for compromise.
Both parties were and are at fault as well as the President. Both sides have valid points and both have glaring faults. What had been throughout the 20th Century however, an healthy rivalry perhaps with a leavining dash of good old-fashion hatred, has so far throughout the present century turned into a posture of total intractability on both sides of the political spectrumthat nothing is being done.
If Senators and legislators could be takenoff the clock like most other persons who refuse to work, that might be one thing. I suspect they’d find a way to compromise in order to maintain their privileged existences. Since they make the rules governing their own pay (along with just about everything else) this won’t happen. The only apparent solution is a massive infusion of new blood. The old system isn’t working. In general I like my U.S. Senators and legislators but nobody in either house deserves much credit for making our government work. Let’s oust incumbents and give new folks a chance. Let’s try more folks from beyond the legal (frarority—cool word what?) Let’s send a strong message that however devided ideologically, our leaders must hammer out compromises or be fired. Also in 2016, let’s try to elect someone with at least Centrist pretentions? The transition from Bush II. To Obama has seen a continual and maintained widening of the political rift, only the polarity has changed. This is not adequate or acceptable!