Tuesday, January 14, 2020

apple cake

some weeks ago i was looking for a new recipe that was either emblematic of an international cuisine or a time period or makes a statement, because our Girl Scout troop is working on a badge about new cuisines.

as an adult i wasn't required to make something, but i was getting in the spirit.

so i have this latvian friend who grew up in latvia during the soviet occupation and i asked her for a recipe that would have been typical food from her childhood, because i think latvia under soviet occupation qualifies as being both international and of a time.

so she said that what came to her mind was ābolu kūka, basically apple cake. it was, she said, the thing you made when you had unexpected company and not much in the way of groceries.

it's always a fun time translating recipes from other languages, so that had some amusement value.

and while i didn't make it right away, our friend rapunsell did and she made it into a lovely recipe we could all follow without two much trouble and i have made it twice since.

here it is, with her permission:

DRY: 2 cups flour, 1 tsp baking soda, 2 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp cinnamon (I use a little sifter for everything but the flour and then I whisk all the dry ingredients) 

WET: 2 eggs, 1 cup unsweetened kefir, 2/3 cup sugar (increase to 1 cup if making dessert), nice splash of vanilla

TOPPING 1: 2 apples, thinly sliced

TOPPING 2: 1 cup sour cream, 1/4 cup sugar, plus more cinnamon for sprinklingMETHOD: Preheat oven to 350 and grease a baking pan. Mix wet and dry ingredients in separate bowls then mix to combine (small lumps are fine). Pour into baking pan. Arrange apple slices on top. Bake for 30 minutes, then remove from oven, spoon sweetened sour cream on top, then sprinkle lightly with cinnamon. Bake for an additional 15 minutes. Allow to cool before cutting.

Monday, January 13, 2020

things that were and were not

on saturday, my plan was to go to a walk and talk in the hinesburg town forest and then come home and make an apple cake for potluck after the walk and talk about the natural and cultural history of jonesville (i have decided that walk and talk is what i'm calling ant instructional/ lecture thingy that takes place in the field) and then i got the email about the cancellation of the sunday event just AFTER i popped the cake in the oven and now i have to eat a whole ass cake.

on sunday i HAD intended to go to the walk and talk and potluck, but in stead i stayed home and learned to tie a knot. ONE KNOT. i have been working on it for a couple of days out of the Ashley Book Of Knots and kept getting it horribly wrong, but then i thought: there HAS to be a youtube video on how to tie this thing so i googled "ABOK 792" and it turns out there are several videos on how to tie this thing, so yay. the rest of my day was taken up learning to tie it competently with two strands of different colors (it helps) and then learning to tie it competently in single color, and then i the small stock i want to tie it in.

so that's a day well-spent.

here's the video.

Wednesday, January 08, 2020

deer herd management

hi again.

i know half of you prefer if i post more often, so i feel a little bad about this last absence.

i was doing a lot of writing, but not any writing i could publish to my blog and then at the end of the day i was too tired to write more for a blog, so that's my excuse.

i still can't post it, because, yanno, too much actual information on a page, both personal and institutional but if you're crazy to read it, drop your email in the comments (i won't publish it) and i'll send you a link to the googledoc.

basically, there was some illegal hunting on some property i do work on. the organizational policy is to forbid hunting of any kind, and the knee jerk reaction was to try to solve the problem of bad actors by properly posting the land, thereby closing it to appropriately behaved hunters.

plus overbrowse by deer is a thing.

anyway, if you want to read the paper, i will send you a link.

i won't be sad if you're ok without it.


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