Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Greengrocer's Apostrophe

I hate it with a flaming passion. Just wanted to tell y'all that.

Which brings me to a brief rant I have about grading undergrads' essays. I'll leave off the diatribe about having to grade so many of them so often (though some of you have heard this in person or on email several times already), and concentrate on some of the errors that all but a few students commit from time to time:

1. Fucking Greengrocer's Apostrophe and its apprentice, its/it's. Hate, hate, hate, hate. Apostrophes are for marking possession, not plural! No more sentences like this (made up) one: "The successful samba's in carnival...." MAKE IT STOP.

2. Gratuitous punctuation. Kids, you don't look smart or cool if you throw in semicolons randomly, you look like a typist with a spastic pinky finger.

3. Misused big words. Ditto.

4. "This is due to the fact that...." Shoot me now.

I could go on, but I actually have to go deal with a couple of kids' papers (which, fortunately, aren't the worst of the batch)--but *why* don't college students have more writing skills? Ok, don't answer that....

Monday, December 3, 2007

Getting Up is Hard To Do.

Unnnnngh. Just another manic monday. I do wish it was [sic] Sunday.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Forward in All Directions

Mere weeks shy of my 34th birthday, I'm pleased to report that my palate has evolved and I now like capers. Jenny & Rob may now rejoice--and anyone else among ye who feels strongly about the things.

Also, I've just discovered that The Slow Cook links to me! Woo hoo! Even despite my fairly frequent musings on non-culinary aspects of life.

And speaking of which, back I get to work on my dissertation proposal, draft 37 zillion....

Bread Pudding

At Lauren's request, here's how I made the bread pudding. This is adapted from the recipe for "New Orleans Bread Pudding" in Joy of Cooking.

1. Grease a baking dish. The recipe said 13" x 9", but I used the differently configured roasting pan we had free, which is slightly smaller and deeper, since the 13" x 9" was otherwise occupied with sweet potatoes. And since when did I ever really follow a recipe anyway!

2. Cut as much Italian or French bread as will fit in the pan into 1/2" thick slices.

3. Whisk until frothy: 3 large eggs, 4 cups milk, 1 cup sugar (Joy says 2 cups--I thought 1 was plenty!), 2 tablespoons vanilla, one teaspoon cinnamon.

4. Arrange the bread so it's almost upright in the pan. Instead of putting raisins between the slices of bread (NO WAY!!!), I sliced a couple of cooking apples and put them between the slices. It worked out very well.

5. Pour the custard mixture over the bread and let it sit for an hour, occasionally squishing the bread down so the custard can infiltrate the tops of the bread slices as well as the bottoms (I found a potato masher perfect for this job).

6. Bake in a preheated oven at 375 for an hour or so, until the top is puffed and lightly browned.

The recipe says to serve it with a whiskey sauce, which would have been lovely, but I had made caramel sauce for it, and we had vanilla ice cream as well. The only thing missing in our household (other than, at that point, stomach room for more food!) was a microwave to heat up the leftovers!