Is that like "I" as in "Eyeliner"?

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Well, my mom has hurt her back and won't be able to make it to our yarn crawl in San Francisco. I hope you will all send healthy happy back thoughts her way because anyone who has thrown out their back knows that this is absolutely no fun at all. Luckily, I know my mom will be back on the west coast as soon as she's in full working order again. This is not a trip for which any arm twisting is necessary so I'm just glad she's taking care of herself and resting up.

I'm scrambling now to get all the various details worked out and may stay in OC for an additional day. If this is anything like my scramble to switch hotels on Monday, it should be more fun than a barrel of monkeys. Having called the travel site's help line, I had the distinct pleasure of being transfered 4 times to a total of 5 reps, and on each occasion I was asked to repeat my 16 digit locater number, consisting of a random assortment of letters and numbers.

Having subsisted on a bag of airline pretzels and some decaf tea over the course of my 12 hour day, I was perhaps lacking in my usual charm. On round three I ran through my locater number twice, trying to communicate it clearly. As my rep repeated it back to me, she ran through the familiar "That's 'A' like 'apple', 'R' like 'Robert'" and on it went, When she got to "'Y' like 'Wyoming'" I actually didn't know how to answer. She was not American, so there was always the risk that she was confusing her letters, since, surely their company supports a fair number of customers in Wyoming, but I trusted that the logic, while perhaps a little faulty, was probably on track. An hour later, I was unpacked and in my room.

And while I'm nitpicking other people's use of the English language, might I show you this gem of fragmented sentence fabulocity?

It reads, "La Quinta. Spanish for 'Got you covered."
Why do we have a period instead of a comma after "La Quinta"? Maybe a lack of sleep makes me overly persnickety.

It's all fine, though, because I had a huge, delicious sushi dinner with my brother last night.

In my world, there's no such thing as too much spicy tuna.

Weather!

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I'm sitting in Portland International Airport, enjoying their free (FREE!) WiFi while I await my flight down to John Wayne Airport for a quick business trip. My flight is a little delayed today. Why?

Snow-ish stuff.

And since I'm just now starting to acclimate to Portland weather, I'll spend almost all of the next two weeks in California and get my resistance to cold back down to nil. Yay!

Knitting on unbloggables continues in earnest, but I've spent a little time with El Matchador, here and there.

Candy pink Polwarth from Lynn. I spun the singles up lacy fine and created a 3-ply using the Navajo plying method.

Would you like to see it closer?

I knew you would.

But I won't be seeing much of El Matchador these next couple of weeks. I think I can live with that. But there are two things I'll miss bunches and I have a picture of one of them right here.

Three guesses what the other is...first two don't count. Well, time to check my flight status. Jet setting is soooooo glamorous.

Question to my Portland neighbors

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To all of you who left me sweet comments about our Sunday trip, thanks. I have been absolutely swamped with work and emails sit read, appreciated and unanswered.

That said, I'm going to ask you all a favor.
It's getting to be about that time when Panda will need a check up. Can anyone recommend a really great Portland vet? We loved the guy we had back in LA, but it's a bit far to drive now.

And if you are in the West Side or Chatsworth areas of LA and need the name of one of two great vets, I got you covered. Just pop me a comment.

The tide is high but I'm holding on

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Well, it was another great weekend for me in Portland. This is probably not what anyone who watches the weather station would guess. We've been getting rains of epic proportions. I'm pretty sure I saw an old guy, two misguided daughters and a bunch of animals on a boat, floating down the street. Actually, I think we've been relatively lucky, our house is on high enough ground that we haven't had any flooding in our general proximity and every day has patches of glorious sunshine. I'm not complaining. And since this is abnormally bad weather, I haven't felt the pang of mover's remorse.

Saturday was dry and lovely and a perfect evening to step out for some Salsa. Thanks to PDX Woman I had the good fortune to find Aztec Willies.

You'll have to excuse the crappy photo, we brought the camera, but no memory card, so this was taken with a camera phone.

I decided to take the lesson to warm myself up, and then dance until Leo is ready to pass out. There was a live band, and the place was absolutely packed. I had a grand time. We finished the evening with some tacos and went to bed so we could wake up early and bring Panda to the beach.

See all the pictures from the beach, after the jump.

Butter Naan

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During my trip to India, my friend Panchami showed us how to make naan. She has been kind enough to send me the recipe and is happy to have me share it with you.

Butter Naan

By Panchami Tamhankar

Feeds about 4

Ingredients

Bread dough

  • 4 cups of refined flour
  • 1 tsp of baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp of baking soda
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tsps sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 2 tbsp of yogurt

Cooking ingredients

  • 4 tbsp of oil
  • 5-6 tbsp of softened butter

Garlic Naan

  • 25 cloves of garlic
  • Fresh chopped coriander

Stuffed Naan

  • Filling of choice (should be dry and cooked). This can include meats, potatoes, or even sweets.

Preparing the dough

  1. Sieve the flour and place in a large mixing bowl
  2. Whisk egg, milk, yogurt
  3. Add the mixture to the flour
  4. Add all the rest of the ingredients; baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt and oil
  5. Knead the flour, adding water if required. The dough should be slightly sticky
  6. Cover the dough in a dampen cloth and let it rest for 2 hours

Making the naan

Preheat oven to about 450ยบ F Have on hand a small bowl of flour, rolling pin, marble board on which to roll, butter and any filling.
Whenever the bread or your hands feels sticky, apply a small amount of flour.

Take a small ball of dough in your hand. Dip into your dish of flour.

Note the bread dough is still wrapped in the wet cloth(left side of both images).

Place ball on marble board and roll out using very very little pressure. Ball should be about 4 inches in diameter

If you would like to stuff the bread, make your stuffing and allow to cool to room tempurature. Shown here is a mutton filling.
Cup your hand and place the dough on your palm. Place about 1.5 tbsp of filling into the center
Fold the edges in, sealing the filling in the dough

Place the dough back on the board with the seam on the bottom. Very gently roll out the dough, starting from the center. The only weight placed on the dough should come from the rolling pin itself. Do not lean on it, just gently roll it out. Turn the dough around, adding flour as needed. Flip the dough over, every so often.

If you have filled the dough, you should begin to see it as the dough stretches out and becomes more translucent. When you dough is about 6-7 inches wide in diameter, or the thickness that you would like (it will puff up a little while cooking), you may stretch out one end slightly, to achieve the oblong shape common for naan.

Spread softened butter on both sides of the bread.

For garlic naan, sprinkle chopped garlic and coriander on top.

Bake until the bread is as golden brown as you'd like.

Serve warm.

This recipe is made to produce a bread that will remain soft even as it cools. The dough is quite versatile and can be used in much the same was as pizza dough, so the skies are the limits. Panchami used something like a toaster oven, which kept the dough very close to the heat source. You may need to experiment with your oven to achieve optimal results. Her oven only allowed her to make a single serving at a time. If you plan to make a whole batch, keep the prepared naan moist until ready to cook by placing under a wet towel.

This meal was served with a yogurt dipping sauce and vegetable broth to help with digestion.

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