Ingredient In Depth: Pineapple

If ever there was an intimidating fruit, it is the pineapple.  I think a lot of people are lost when it comes to this semi-exotic treat.  I keep hearing how they’re hard to pick, difficult to choose and baffling to use as anything other than an offensive weapon.  Fear not gentle traveler, there are answers to be found and paths we can take to greater pineapple understanding.  Anything here can be done with canned pineapple, but fresh is far better. Continue reading

The Many Macaron Myths

Let me first start things off by saying that, unlike what I usually do, I will not be providing a recipe for today.  The reason for this is two-fold.  First the recipe I used for this little experiment is too close to the ones found in Pierre Hermé’s excellent book on the subject and secondly because I’m not wholly happy with the final result.  Most pastry chefs work for years on their own macaron recipe and mine is still in its infancy.  Besides which, the recipe is not the point of this particular excursion.  My purpose here is to examine the making of these mysterious confections to see if they are truly as complicated as you may have heard. Continue reading

Slinging in the Rain

The weather has been wet and cold (in Vancouver, shocking I know) and not terribly good for the care and feeding of swords.  Since I’m not allowed to swing them around in the house (I have no idea how that light got broken, I swear) that means I haven’t been able to keep up practice as much as I would like. Fortunately, there are other arts I can work with regardless of weather. As an added bonus it’s a great way to make sure the dogs get a good run. Continue reading