behold the power of cheese

recipe: gorgonzola polenta

This is a delicious, rich side dish. The taste of the gorgonzola is strong with this one, so if that's not your speed, don't bother. :D I made it as a side to go with some vegan bbq riblets, but I can see this working with any number of proteins.

Gorgonzola Polenta
modified from this recipe
5 cups low-sodium chicken broth (this is important; regular broth makes it too salty)
1 3/4 cups polenta (coarse-ground yellow cornmeal; you can also use regular cornmeal, but it cooks even faster)
3/4 cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
1/3 cup heavy cream

Bring broth to a boil. When boiling, whisk in polenta (you actually do want to whisk it in, to reduce clumping). Turn heat down to low and cook covered, stirring often, until broth is absorbed and polenta is tender (I suggest taste-checking with your spoon), about 4-6 minutes. If polenta becomes clumpy, add additional broth by the 1/4-cup.

Remove from heat and stir in cheese and cream, until uniform. Polenta will lighten and become creamier in appearance. Serve hot.

Note: this make a lot, and I'm not entirely sure what to do with the leftovers yet. Epicurious comments suggested making it into patties and frying it, but I'm going to try tossing it in the oven to warm, too.

Edit to add: Amazingly, this can actually be microwaved, as long as you stir it well once it's hot but before you serve it. The more you know, right?

double double toil and trouble

I have a pot of blood-colored liquid burbling along to itself on the stove, complete with strange noises and odd smells. *gleeful cackle*

(No, it's actually boiling beets, for making beet salad, but just because I'm out of eye of newt doesn't mean I can't pretend.)
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shoulders of giants

book meme

Plugging along. Not much going on (job hunt = depressing; family life = ridiculous; that's basically all you need to know), so have a meme:

The book I am reading: Just started The Deed of Paksenarrion by Elizabeth Moon, which was suggested to me by allandaros ages ago. I've only just started it, but female main character? What's not to like? :D

The book I am writing: Well, am actually actively working on the SPACE PIRATES for stargate_summer. But if we're talking about book-that-could-one-day-be-published, that would be Danse Macabre, which currently lives in pieces in dns_macabre. Yes, I'm finally trying to finish that series of short stories, dress them up, and take them out dancing. Comm is flocked, but if you want to read the existing stories, the new-to-the-internet stories, and the reedits, ask for an invite, and I'll add you.

The book I love most: Oh, gosh, too many. The book I love most that I've reread recently is Good Omens, which is one of my happy-place books, and one of my favorites. So funny! If I were to actually become a pro writer, I would love to write a book half as good as this one.

The last book I received as a gift: pigsflew bought me The Ophiuchi Hotline by John Varley when he visited last month, but I have not gotten a chance to read it yet.

The last book I gave as a gift: A used copy of Earthman's Burden to Dad, to replace his copy, which is too brittle to be read. Before that, a preorder of The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest, for Mom.

The nearest book on my desk: Well, kitchen table/desk, though they're actually on the chair next to it: The Green Fairy Book and Jewish Family and Life, both of which I need to put in the mail on Monday. Hooray, PaperBackSwap.
behold the power of cheese

recipes: cheddar garlic biscuits and penne rigate with broccoli

Ooh, fancy, right? This whole lovely spread took me like an hour or so to make. And I'm even going to share the recipes. :D

Cheddar Garlic Biscuits
modified from this recipe
2 cups buttermilk biscuit mix (such as Bisquick or Jiffy)
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2/3 cup milk

Preheat oven to 400°F. Prepare baking sheet with grease or parchment.

Stir together biscuit mix, cheese, garlic powder, and oregano until mixed. Create a well in the center and pour in milk. With a wooden spoon, stir milk into dry ingredients to create a sticky, elastic dough.

Drop by rounded tablespoons onto prepared sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes, until just beginning to brown around the edges.

Makes about 20.

Penne Rigate with Broccoli
modified from this recipe
1 1/2 pounds broccoli
1/4 cup salt
1 pound penne rigate (or similarly sized pasta)
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2/3 cup grated parmesan cheese, plus extra for garnishing
ground pepper (house preference: McCormick Peppercorn Medley, 'cause it's pretty)

Prepare broccoli by removing stems and cutting into bite-sized florets. Bring large pot of water and salt to a boil. When boiling, add pasta and begin timing as indicated on the package. When pasta returns to a boil, add broccoli and cook remaining time, stirring occasionally throughout.

At end of time, strain pasta and broccoli in a mesh strainer and then return to pot. Add olive oil and cheese and stir, until a green-flecked sauce is created. Serve warm, with extra cheese and pepper to taste.

Makes 3-4 dinner-sized portions.


fuck my life

This was supposed to be a post about how I wrote today, for the first time since November.

Instead, this is going to be a post about the fact that my dad announced today that he's moving out, has already arranged a new place, and is planning on divorcing her to marry someone else.

I--there were no words for my rage when I found out. I actually threw my phone across the room (bounced it off the radiator) when I got off the phone with him. Phone, yes. Because he decided to tell me this when he was in DC and I had just arrived back in Pittsburgh a few hours earlier. And then he has the balls to offer to stop by for a visit this weekend...with the woman he's leaving my mother for.

There's more--there always is, isn't there--but suffice it to say that I'm still pretty furious, and I spent a good two hours crying, and between those to factors and the fact that my back is so tense you could probably bounce coins off the muscles, I'm probably not sleeping tonight. I did manage to finish eating after I got off the phone with him, and I haven't thrown up yet, so that's something.

The good news is that Mom seems to be doing ok, at least for now, and is definitely more worried about me than herself at the moment. But the two of them--they haven't gotten along, or even liked each other, for a long time now, but they at least complemented each other in their skill sets. Mom doesn't know how to iron her own clothes, or troubleshoot when her computer acts up, and she's in the middle of switching the program she does her billing in. Dad barely knows how to take care of himself when it comes to things like washing dishes and folding laundry. I don't know what to do with either of them.

Mom wants me to make sure I call my shrink, make sure she's keeping an eye on me. Unfortunately, she's not overreacting: I had been doing better then last week or so, but it's still very fragile, and this is certainly enough of a blow that it might break it. On the other hand, people with depression are often much better at coping with concrete problems, and this is definitely up there. Even if I'm in Pittsburgh and not really able to help.

And they expect me to keep plugging along and trying to get better, like nothing's happened? Yeah, right.

(I'm turning comments off, because I really don't want to hear it right now.)
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real life update

Not-quite-a-week with the parents turned into week-and-a-half with the parents, but that's not the end of the world. I got to see all my DC friends (including one who is moving to Seattle this month! what is it with me and losing people to Seattle?), and am going to be able to go Israeli dancing twice, so that's pretty neat. Also, Mom and I went to see the Anglo-Saxon Hoard exhibit at the National Geographic Museum, which was amazing. Seriously, if you are in the DC area, you should try to see it, it's really neat, and likely will not be in the US again after the exhibit closes in early March.

Things! are going on in stargate_summer and jd_ficathon, and the New Grammarian Drive is still going on for fandom_grammar, so that's all exciting. brainofck has taken over as my alpha reader for my stargate_summer, which is awesome; we've already found a solution to one of the major problems I'd been having; naturally, said solution requires research, but isn't that always the case?

Moodwise, I've actually been feeling better the last week or so--minus a teeny tiny breakdown last night--but there's no way of knowing if that's because of the new medicine (it has a flavor! and that flavor is black cherry ick) or because I've been around people this last week, so we shall see if it continues when I'm back on my own in the Burgh. I hope so, I really do. I'm so, so tired of being a lump of sad all the time.

a stargate_summer-related request

Am trying to finish my second stargate_summer Big Bang this year. You know, the one where SG-1 goes undercover as space pirates. And I'm looking for an alpha reader/cheerleader to help me with some plotting issues, and whatever problems may arise as I continue working on the rough draft.

Note: cheerleader would not be required to do any actual editing; I'm going to have someone else to do that. All I'm looking for is someone familiar with SG-1 canon who is willing to hold my hand through the writing process. I've got the broadest strokes of an outline, but some of the details are eluding me, and I'm sure I'll run into additional problems as I go.

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Interested? Comment here with your e-mail address (comments are screened) or drop me an e-mail at melayneseahawk[at]gmail[dot]com, and we'll chat!

Edit: Found!

for fuck's sake

And then I wound up in the ER again. God-fucking-damnit.

Had what was probably an allergic reaction to the new med the new doc put me on. And in the middle of the night, of course, so I wound up in the ER at one in the morning to have them look at my hands, which had suddenly swollen up and gone all red. It went down pretty quickly (with the help of some Benadryl), and I managed to talk them out of putting me on steroids, but still. Did not need this. At all.

And then, of course, when I finally woke up today, I found out that a project that I'd been working on to try to earn some extra cash had been turned down. And, because I'm so fucking broke, I can't afford to redo it.

This last 24 hours is so fired.
january - looking forward looking back

New Year's Resolutions

1. Read more.
2. Write more.
3. Get driver's license.
4. Exercise more.
5. Get along better with Mom.
6. Spend less time on the computer and more time with real people.
7. Figure out what I'm doing with my life (work, school, whatever).
8. Sort out my mental health situation.

projects for 2012:
- 150,000 words for getyourwordsout
- stargate_summer
- finish and prep dns_macabre for publishing
- fandom_grammar retagging
- read a book for bedtimeforlj
- gm Stargate rpg on google+