Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Random Quote

Frink: As you can see, I have created a lemon ball so sour it
can only be safely contained in a magnetic field. The
candy, known as 77X42... Bwei... Where the hell is the
Homer: I don't know.

HotForWords On (Douchebag)Bill O'Rielly

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Mulligatawny Soup Recipe

Mulligatawny--literally, "Pepper Water"--is a substantial and deliciously complex meal in itself. At the same time it poses its own mystery since soup is not a significant part of traditional Indian cuisine. Rumor has it that the English adapted a traditional spiced pea and lentil Indian peasant dish to suit their own love of soup...and called it Indian. Serve this one hot--and with a lot of showmanship--to 4-6 people.

2 Tablespoons butter or olive oil
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
1 chile pepper, seeded and deveined (your choice: banana, poblano, jalapeno, habanero--whatever you can stand)
4 cups chicken stock
1/4 cup lentils
salt and pepper to taste
1 Tablespoon curry powder
1/2 cup coconut milk* or whipping cream
1-2 cups cooked rice (preferably basmati)
1/2-1 cup shredded cooked chicken (you can cook raw chicken in the stock at the start if you don't have leftover chicken lying around)
1/2 cup tart raw apple, chopped fine
Garnish: spoonsful of extra cream or coconut milk--and minced cilantro or parsley.
Saute the celery, carrots, onion, and pepper in the butter at a low heat until the onion is translucent. Stir in the curry powder to blend and cook for a minute. Pour in the stock, add the lentils (and chicken, if it's raw), and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.

While the soup is simmering, get the rice cooked (if it isn't already); likewise with the chicken. Then shred the chicken and chopped the apples finely. You don't need to skin the apples.

When the soup is done, season to taste with the salt and pepper, then puree, solids first, in a blender. Return to pot.

When ready to serve, bring the soup to a simmer and add the coconut milk or cream. Take the pot to the table, as well as individual bowls of warm rice (heated in the microwave, if necessary), shredded chicken, finely chopped apple, coconut milk (or cream), and minced cilantro (or parsley).

To serve, have big individual serving bowls at the ready. Spoon rice into each bowl (flat soup bowls are nice here)--then pile on a big spoonful of chicken and a spoonful of apple. Ladle the soup on top, then drip coconut milk/cream into the center and swirl--and sprinkling with fresh cilantro and parsley.

Star Wars Blue Harvest Clips

You'd Be More Miserable Than A Lonely Old Widow Living In A Downstairs Apartment

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Square fruit stuns Japanese shoppers

Japan has again shown off one of its greatest innovations - square watermelons.
For years consumers struggled to fit the large round fruit in their refrigerators.

And then there was the problem of trying to cut the fruit when it kept rolling around.

But 20 years ago a forward-thinking farmer on Japan's south-western island of Shikoku solved the problem.

The farmer, from Zentsuji in Kagawa prefecture, came up with the idea of making a cube-shaped watermelon which could easily be packed and stored.

Fashion food
To make it happen, farmers grew the melons in glass boxes and the fruit then naturally assumed the same shape. Today the cuboid watermelons are hand-picked and shipped all over Japan.

But the fruit, on sale in a selection of department stores and upmarket supermarkets, appeals mainly to the wealthy and fashion-conscious of Tokyo and Osaka, Japan's two major cities.

Each melon sells for 10,000 yen, equivalent to about $83. It is almost double, or even triple, that of a normal watermelon.

"I can't buy it, it is too expensive," said a woman browsing at a department store in the southern city of Takamatsu.

Special Thanks to BBC

Fucking Kick Ass Scene From Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon

Scientists 'see new species born'

Scientists at the University of Arizona may have witnessed the birth of a new species.

Biologists Laura Reed and Prof Therese Markow made the discovery by observing breeding patterns of fruit flies that live on rotting cacti in deserts.

The work could help scientists identify the genetic changes that lead one species to evolve into two species.

The research is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

One becomes two

Whether the two closely related fruit fly populations the scientists studied - Drosophila mojavensis and Drosophila arizonae - represent one species or two is still debated by biologists.

However, the University of Arizona researchers believe the insects are in the early stages of diverging into separate species.

The emergence of a new species - speciation - occurs when distinct populations of a species stop reproducing with one another.

When the two groups can no longer interbreed, they cease exchanging genes and eventually go their own evolutionary ways becoming separate species.

Though speciation is a crucial element of understanding how evolution works, biologists have not been able to discover the factors that initiate the process.

In fruit flies there are several examples of mutant genes that prevent different species from breeding but scientists do not know if they are the cause or just a consequence of speciation.

Sterile males

In the wild, Drosophila mojavensis and Drosophila arizonae rarely, if ever, interbreed - even though their geographical ranges overlap.

In the lab, researchers can coax successful breeding but there are complications.

Drosophila mojavensis mothers typically produce healthy offspring after mating with Drosophila arizonae males, but when Drosophila arizonae females mate with Drosphila mojavensis males, the resulting males are sterile.

Laura Reed maintains that such limited capacity for interbreeding indicates that the two groups are on the verge of becoming completely separate species.

Another finding that adds support to that idea is that in a strain of Drosophila mojavensis from southern California's Catalina Island, mothers always produce sterile males when mated with Drosophila arizonae males.

Because the hybrid male's sterility depends on the mother's genes, the researchers say the genetic change must be recent.

Reed has also discovered that only about half the females in the Catalina Island population had the gene (or genes) that confer sterility in the hybrid male offspring.

However, when she looked at the Drosophila mojavensis females from other geographic regions, she found that a small fraction of those populations also exhibited the hybrid male sterility.

The newly begun Drosophila mojavensis genome sequencing project, which will provide a complete roadmap of every gene in the species, will help scientists pin down which genes are involved in speciation.

Special Thanks to the BBC

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Recipe: The Copper Connection

Copper-rich beans are good for the brain, and tasty too.

Pinto beans don't just make a delicious seven-layer dip—they may be good for your brain, too. According to USDA research, store-bought pinto beans are a good source of dietary copper, with a cup providing almost 20 percent of your daily needs. The nutrient is known to be important for transporting oxygen in blood, and findings from the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis suggest copper might also play a role in learning and memory. Scientists found that copper is partly responsible for controlling the strength of connections between neurons. These findings bolster previous research showing that copper deficiency can impair brain development and function, and may also be associated with the development of Alzheimer's disease.

More Heavy Metal
Other copper-rich foods:

Food: Oysters (raw)
Copper Amount: 1.85 mg/100g
% Daily Recommended Intake: 92%

Food: Sunflower Seeds (dried)
Copper Amount: 1.75 mg/100g
% Daily Recommended Intake: 88%

Food: Mushrooms (cooked)
Copper Amount: 0.5 mg/100g
% Daily Recommended Intake: 25%

Food: Potatoes (baked)
Copper Amount: 0.32 mg/100g
% Daily Recommended Intake: 16%

Food: Raisins
Copper Amount: 0.25 mg/100g
% Daily Recommended Intake: 13%

Vegetarian Pinto Bean Chili
6 Servings
Prep Time: 2.5 hours

1lb dried pinto beans
1 can crushed tomatoes
1 onion chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 tsp. chili powder
4 oz green chilies, chopped
2 tsp. dried oregano
2 bay leaves
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
½ tsp. cayenne pepper
4 oz. cubed cheddar cheese (optional)

Wash beans. Soak them overnight under 3 inches of water. Drain beans and place in large pot. Add crushed tomatoes, onion, garlic, chili powder, chilies, herbs, salt, and pepper. Add enough water to cover beans. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer two hours or until beans are tender. Remove bay leaves and add cheese. Serve with rice.

Special Thanks to Psychology Today

Friday, August 08, 2008

Vanilla Silver Dollar Pancakes

This thick batter cooked on a griddle and served with fresh fruit makes a lovely breakfast or dessert. The batter makes 12 - 3" pancakes but it is a good idea to double the recipe as people often can’t get enough when you start to cook them.

• 1 Cup flour
• 1 TB. baking powder
• ½ tsp. salt
• 2 TB. sugar (could use VANILLA SUGAR)
• 1 egg
• 1 Cup milk
• 2 TB. butter, melted
• sweetened yogurt or whipped cream for topping, optional

Preheat an electric griddle to 350°, or use your favorite pancake pan. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt into a large bowl. Mix in the sugar. In a jug or bowl with a pour spout, beat the egg, VANILLA EXTRACT and milk. Pour in the melted butter. Make a well in the flour and add the milk mixture gradually to form a batter. You can do this by hand or with an electric mixer. Drop 2 TB. of the batter onto a hot griddle and cook 3-4 minutes on each side. You can flip the pancakes when they start to bubble and seem set. Layer on parchment paper if you are not serving immediately. To serve, layer up with fruit and powdered sugar. Don’t forget—a dollop of yogurt or whipped cream will make them even more yummy.
Prep time 10 minutes
Cook time 6-8 minutes per batch
Yield: 12 pancakes

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Useful Facts about Herbs

Herbs have many and varied uses for people around the world. Herbs add charm to our gardens, flavor to our cooking, healthful balm for our bodies and even embellish our crafts. The following text is a compilation of interesting facts about many types of herbs.

Aloe can be a decorative table top plant, but its soothing gel is also the number one home remedy for minor burns and poison ivy.

Oil derived from the root of angelica can be placed in the bath for a soothing soak. Angelic can also be useful for treating bronchial problems.

Anise is astoundingly alluring to mice. If you have a mice problem, bait your traps with anise instead of cheese.

Ointments containing arnica are useful to assuage pain from sprains and bruises.

A concoction of crushed barberries and water should be gargled to help sooth a sore throat.

When consider herbs for hair care, it might be useful to know that basil adds natural luster to any hair color.

Want to add some natural protection to your store of flour? Placing a bay leaf with flour is traditionally used to repel insects.

Cinnamon contains a substance that may kill bacteria and fungi. Sprinkling it around door thresholds may also help to deter ants.

A member of the mint family, beebalm used in tea can help sooth menstrual cramps.

Native Americans living in the Great Lakes region were the first to discover bloodroot’s anti-cancer properties for treating cancers of the skin.

Old wives tales say that borage invokes courageous feelings. Drinking some tea steeped with borage leaves might help prepare for giving a speech or proposing marriage!

Calendula has been used to treat flu symptoms, cramps, toothache—even syphilis. A rinse composed of it may also draw out blonde highlights to hair.

Crushed caraway seeds can add great flavor to fresh popcorn.

The ancient Egyptians used chamomile to cure the chills associated with malaria. However, this apple-scented tea is frequently taken today in teas for its soothing effects.

During the Middle Ages, chervil was eaten to cure a bad case of hiccups. Today, it is frequently used by French chefs to flavor their dishes alongside thyme and tarragon.

Chives have been used by cooks for almost five thousand years. But in the garden, they may help protect and drive away pests like Japanese beetles. Plant them near roses, tomatoes or grapes.

There are over five hundred species of eucalyptus. It’s believed that Australian aborigines were the first peoples to understand its healing properties.

The secret to successfully growing goldenseal is a humus-rich soil.

Ginger can reportedly help alleviate morning sickness nausea.

Marjoram has been a staple of folk medicine used to treat rheumatism, toothache—even conjunctivitis.

A drop of oregano oil on a toothache is a soothing folk remedy still in practice today.

Sage can be used as a fragrant additive to homemade soaps and perfumes.

Sassafras is sometimes used to ease the itching of poison ivy and poison oak.

Queer IQ: The Gay Couple's Advantage

Gay relationships are less mired in deception and perhaps even less prone to friction, according to multiple studies.

By: Kaja Perina

"There will always be a battle between the sexes because men and women want different things," quipped comedian George Burns. "Men want women and women want men." But when men want men and women want women, each couple can circumvent treacherous romantic terrain because partners more closely share sexual appetites and mind-reading abilities than do heterosexual pairs.

Most lesbians don't fear rapacious women and gay men need not always soft-peddle their sexual predilections. On balance, gays and lesbians understand their partners' bodies and biases with a certainty that many a clueless "breeder" yearns for. "Homosexuality could be viewed in some respects as the triumph of the individual's mating intelligence over the gonads' evolutionary interests," argues Geoffrey Miller.

The result is that gay relationships are less mired in deception and perhaps even less prone to friction, according to multiple studies.

"If two guys in a relationship are on the same wavelength, it's going to be very hard for them to deceive one another about their motives, their lusts, their philandering. Whereas between the sexes, each sex presents a socially acceptable form of masculinity or femininity that is reassuring to the other person but not particularly accurate," says Miller.

Romantic lies are, after all, a sort of Rosetta stone on which gender differences are coyly inscribed. Straight men lie about their commitment to the relationship and about their resources, finds psychologist Maureen O'Sullivan. They are also more likely to lie to keep their partner from getting angry at them, a small but telling testament to the wrath of women. Women, in contrast, lie to flatter a man's sense of self and to downplay their interest in other men.

Gay and lesbian couples are not only more honest with one another, they are also more likely to exhibit affection and humor in negotiating relationship stressors, according to John Gottman, emeritus professor of psychology at the University of Washington. Gottman compared conflict discussions in gay and straight couples and found that "gays and lesbians talked explicitly about sex and monogamy. Those topics don't come up in 31 years of studying heterosexual couples, who are uptight in discussing sex. In their conversations, you really don't know what they're talking about."

Whether a same-sex edge to mating intelligence makes for longer unions is unclear. Among the couples Gottman studied, the projected break-up rate for homosexuals, over a four-decade span, is a grim 64 percent (gay men are far more likely to split than are lesbians). The 40-year divorce rate for straight couples in first marriages is 67 percent. To amend George Burns: If you wait long enough, every couple wants different things.

Special Thanks to Psychology Today

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Quote Of The Day

"These jellyfish near shore are a message the sea is sending us saying, ‘Look how badly you are treating me.’"
DR. JOSEP-MAR√ćA GILI, one of the world’s leading jellyfish experts.