Seasoned greetings

Happy, merry, joyous, festive, or otherwise good:
Christmas, Yule, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Solstice, Bodhi day, Dongzhi Festival, Chalica, Soyal, Yalda, Mōdraniht, Saturnalia, Pancha Ganapati, Watch Night, New Year's Eve, Hogmanay, New Year's Day, Epiphany, Agnostica, Sadeh, Newtonmas, Malanka, and Hogswatch (thank you, Wikipedia). And if you don't celebrate any of those? Then have a nice day.

Any advice for pumpkin-apple soup

So. I have a pumpkin, I have or can get lots of apples, this is the time of year for them. I wanted to make soup.

My questions:
1. I was thinking of blenderizing a few chunks, and some or all of the peel that I cut off, to thicken the soup. Should I cook it in some way first?
2. Chicken stock, or beef stock?
3. I have some frozen tofu that I was going to add to it. Do you think it needs dead animal as well? If so, what that can be obtained cheaply (chicken leg quarters, chicken hearts, canned sardines, canned tuna, anything else that's in the neighborhood of $1/lb--not pork, I avoid pork for ethical reasons) would work?
4. What vegetation would go well in it besides the pumpkin and apples?
5. I'm thinking of using ginger in it, any particular thoughts on what other spices would be good.
6. Any particular ingredients that shouldn't just get the chuck-it-in-the-crock-pot treatment?

Tiny story fragment...

She skipped her way through a light spell. As she finished the last sweeping gesture, the tracery of her footprints began to glow.

That feels like it has the potential to become *something*...

For now, it's becoming the start to a pass-on story, if anyone's interested.

edit: datebump so it's on the first page

banana chicken

got a bug in my brain, and did vague riffing off of some online recipes.
Nuked boneless skinless chicken thigh until it was mostly defrosted. There was a lot of liquid, so I sliced up a small potato to absorb some of it. Put both on a (toaster oven) baking sheet. Covered the chicken with sliced banana. Sprinkled with ginger and a little cinnamon. Sprinkled unsweetened coconut on top (a fairly generous layer). Baked at 350 for a little over an hour.

Not bad, but...
Notes for next time:
Use a riper banana (this one was almost green)
Rice, not potato
Sprinkle ginger on the chicken itself, not just on top of the banana. And use more.
Use less coconut

Old, recycled memesheepery

If you read this, even if we don't speak often or ever, please post a comment with a COMPLETELY MADE UP AND FICTIONAL memory of you and me.

It can be anything you want - good or bad - BUT IT HAS TO BE FAKE.

When you're finished, post this little paragraph in your LJ (or Facebook or whatever) and see what your friends come up with.

Chicken cooked by the rommate

Whole chicken.
fried the outside of the skin a bit in a frying pan, to sear it (with a little oil), which is apparently called braising
Put into casserole, with 1/3C soy sauce, 1/3C brown sugar, 1/2 C water, 1T garlic powder, 1t fresh basil, 1 sliced onion, 1/4C red wine, 1T crushed pepper.
Mix all that together, pour over chicken, let it drain into the pan.
Cook, foil covered, at 350 for 45 minutes. Then, remove foil, pour sauce over chicken, re-bake (at 350, then 375) until it reached 180 degrees. It took about another 45 minutes.
Let chicken stand for 15-20 minutes. Remove fat from pan drippings, put in 2T of corn starch and 2C of water, and whisk in until corn starch is distributed. Then, dismember and eat.

It was pretty tasty, and apparently the white meat was *really* tender.

chicken vegetable soooop

Lesse if I can reconstruct my latest soupy success.
day 1: boilt a couple picked-over chicken carcases, along with a bunch of parsley, some rosemary, lots of garlic, and one of those soup-base things from a turkey. Possibly also salt and pepper, I forget.
day 2: picked out bones, then put the broth back on the slowcooker with some (5 or so) taro roots in, as well as a bag of gravy cubes.
day 3: chopped up a thumb and change of ginger, a largeish onion, and saute'ed them in the pot that shares its lid with the crock pot. Add summer squash (maybe 2 or 3 pounds?) and mushrooms (2 smallish portabellos), cook 'til done-ish. Add 2 pounds or so of some kind of bok choi. Cook a minute or 2 longer, add the broth, cook until heated.

I'm not turning cartwheels or anything, but it's not bad.

Weekend of +5 suckitude

Though it's had some high points, this weekend has had far, far more suck that I would have preferred.

I came down to Tucson because of relatives and my birthday--a relative I don't see often was in town, and mom was doing my birthday dinner to coincide. Dinner was nice, I got an *extremely* generous birthday present from Mom, and it was nice to see some relatives I hadn't seen in a while. But.

On the way down from Phoenix, when I was between Casa Grande and Picacho, my car started to sound like one of the putt-putt cars from Golf'n'stuff or something. It turns out it was just an unscrewed spark plug, but I didn't figure that out until the next day. I wasn't able to get it sorted out that night (it was, by then, after 11), so I left my car at the Circle K near Marana (where I had, slowly, driven it to trying to reach somewhere I could get it fixed). While I was there, this strange possibly homeless lady was being weird at my car, and I didn't say no to her aggressively enough. I think she's the one who stole my wallet.
I got back the actual physical wallet, and *some* of the important contents, but not my driver's license, my credit cards, various other odds and ends, my foreign money and such, and my rock from Jamaica.

In a way, it's the rock that pisses me off the most. The money, the credit cards, even the driver's license had some reasonable value to other people. More value to me, but...the person who stole them at least gained something from stealing them. The rock? Nobody but me cares about that rock. To anyone else on the planet, it's a small, smooth, kind of flat rock, much like thousands of others. To me? It was a reminder of a trip I took, a physical link to a part of my heritage (indirectly, at least), and kind of a luck piece or talisman or something. That rock had been in my wallet since I went to Jamaica well over a decade ago. My loss of that rock was no gain to anyone else. And that just pisses me off.