Friday, February 10, 2012

Communication Satellites Collision Two Dinners

Three years ago to the day, two communication satellites collided in orbit above Siberia at velocities greater than escape velocity. BOOM! It was 'the first accidental hypervelocity collision between two intact artificial satellites in Earth orbit.' Only one was operational. There was a ton of debris, which hasn't caused any damage to other satellites. Cool.

I can't access the internet at my apartment, so I'm posting this from a cafe down the street. I won't post recipes for these dishes. Above is just rice and lentils (unseasoned), with steamed and then sauteed beets, beet greens, and broccoli. Below is penne with a sauce made from four tomatoes, the better part of an eggplant, and a yellow onion, seasoned with dried oregano, basil, and parsley.

I'll have two film reviews for you soon.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Amadou Diallo Shooting Tofu Scramble Burrito

On February 4, 1999, four plainclothes policemen murdered an unarmed 23-year-old Guinean immigrant in the Bronx. Amadou Diallo ran up the outside steps to his apartment door after four plain-looking white dudes "loudly identified themselves as NYPD officers" (i.e., "Stop, NYPD!"). No shit he did. Diallo pulled his wallet out of his pocket, which one of the officers proclaimed was a gun (he apparently needed his contacts prescription updated). The hysterical goon then tripped backwards off the step, which his fellow officers took to mean he'd been shot (they apparently needed cochlear implants). The police fired 41 bullets, hitting Diallo 19 times. If you aren't already clutching your head, get ready. "The internal NYPD investigation ruled the officers had acted within policy, based on what a reasonable police officer would have done in the same circumstances with the information they had" (emphasis added). What is this, the metaphysics of color perception? An unarmed guy got shot at 41 times at close range. I'm sure you know how this ended, but here goes anyway. After a grand jury in the Bronx indicted the officers on charges of second-degree murder and reckless endangerment (i.e., justice), an appellate court ordered a change of venue to Albany, where the officers were acquitted (i.e., injustice). I'm not even gonna bother quoting NWA.

I made this burrito on the suggestion of my friend C.

serves: 3-4
prep. time: approx. 25 min.

1 lb. extra firm tofu, crumbled or cubed
1 Field Roast chipotle sausage, chopped
1 crown broccoli, chopped
1 small yellow onion, sliced
1 jalapeno, diced
1/2 pint grape tomatoes, halved
1/4 c. nutritional yeast
soy sauce

1. Saute the tofu and onion in oil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally.
2. Once the tofu is browned, add the broccoli and Field Roast and jalapeno. Douse with soy sauce.
3. After the broccoli has turned bright green, season and coast with nutritional yeast.
4. Heat the tomatoes just long enough to soften the skin.
5. Wrap up in a tortilla with guacamole, salsa, and/or nondairy sour cream (e.g., Tofutti).

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Vegan Health Rice and Beans

No, these rice and beans aren't consummately healthful, I just wanted to take this space to promote Ginny Messina's blog, The Vegan R.D., which she's been writing since November 2007. I really should go and get blood work done to see how I'm doing on vitamins. I'm probably deficient at least in B12 and D. Vegan Essentials is a good place to buy supplements!

serves: 2
prep. time: 100 min.

1 c. soup mix beans
3/4 c. short grain brown rice
1 yellow bell pepper, diced
1 poblano pepper, diced
some scallions, chopped or cut with kitchen scissors
1 avocado
juice of 1/4 lime
chipotle powder
dried cilantro

1. Bring 4 c. water to a boil in a medium-sized pot. Add beans and simmer until tender, usually about an hour and a half.
2. Simmer the rice for 50 minutes.
3. In a pan, saute the peppers and scallions with seasoning in oil over medium-high heat for several minutes.
4. Mash the avocado with lime juice and salt.

I have a poem in the latest issue of The Capilano Review! It's the first time I'll see my byline in print. (Thanks to A. for encouragement!)

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Ham the Chimp's Spaceflight Three Dishes

On January 31, 1961, a chimpanzee named Ham (actually HAM, for Holloman Aerospace Medical Center) became the first higher primate to leave the Earth's atmosphere. I was going to relay some facts from Wikipedia, but it's just all sad. Poor chimpanzees probably often wonder who the hell these big hairless devils are and why they punish you until you perform in rote, mechanical ways. And then why they continue to punish you in increasingly bizarre ways until you die. NASA no longer "employs" chimpanzees, if that's any consolation.

Notice: You shouldn't use more than three or four cloves of garlic for 30 oz. of chick peas when making hummus. I used double that amount here out of spite for my taste buds and my taste buds' children.

serves: 2
prep. time: no more than 25 min.

some rapini, thick parts of the stems discarded
1 clove garlic, minced

3/4 c. red lentils
2 c. water
1 large tomato, sliced

1 can chick peas
lots o' olive oil
3 cloves garlic
spoonful of tahini
juice of at least 1/4 lemon

1. Put everything for the lentil soup in a small pot. Simmer or gently boil for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
2. Put everything for the hummus in a food processor and process until smooth.
3. Saute the rapini with garlic for about five minutes.