Some end of March AMG reviews…

Into spring we go with a mix of old and new:

Sister Crayon — Bellow
Deaf Center — Owl Splinters
Secret Cities — Strange Hearts
Roommate — Guilty Rainbow
Mike Gibbons — Marigolds
Dinosaur Bones — My Divider
Stinking Lizaveta — Sacrifice and Bliss
PFFR — United We Doth

Two recent cooking experiments

Of sorts — the other day, unsure of what to do with a green panther cauliflower I had, I scrounged up this recipe for a spicy/strong cauliflower pasta. Did a couple of adaptations — no anchovies, for a start — but the end result was mighty fine, and really, whatever the sauce/seasonings you want to be is what counts. Going whole wheat with the pasta never hurts either:

Cauliflower pasta

Last night, meantime, having caught up on a variety of work and at a slightly loose end, I wanted to bake something to use up some ingredients and decided to go the savory muffin route. I turned up a recipe for something called fabulous fargozas — and while I suspect the name is some random thing dreamed up by someone, it is pretty nice. Had no mozzarella to hand so the only cheese was the parmesan, but it did work — also used almond milk instead of the real thing:


Now to ponder what next…

The garden on March 29, 2011

Things are really starting to kick in — all that rain last week was perfect to help encourage things to start growing, and now the radishes are no longer alone:

Meantime, a slew of recent OC Weekly work

Been busier than I realized there! Beat Blvd. work is continuing, including recent releases from Halle Ford, Her Voice Remains and the Wingard Manor.

Meantime, today my feature story on Sharon Van Etten ran — very personable in the interview, quite excellent music all around. A sample:

When Sharon Van Etten plays Detroit Bar on Saturday evening, the New York-based, New Jersey- and Kentucky-raised performer will be taking another step in what has been both a hectic tour schedule and a meteoric rise. Having recently returned from a European tour opening for the National, she’s due to complete sessions for her third album in the next few months, not to mention summer shows, festival appearances and more. It’s almost a wonder she has a chance to breathe, but, she says, just the fact her success exists is breathtaking enough.

“Every time people just show up to a concert is amazing. Or when someone recognizes me on the street—’Are you Sharon?!’ ‘ . . . Yeah?’—it really makes me tear up a bit,” she says. “My favorite shows are the intimate ones, where the audience all knows why they’re there. Opening for the National was the biggest set of shows I’ve played in my life, from 1,000 to 8,000 people. I need to learn how to be comfortable in that environment. I want to relate to more people musically, so I need to not be nervous about the crap!”

And then…Rebecca Black. First as a detailed blog post with video clips, then a week later in the print version with a slightly edited version. Good fun to write it all — and on the subject of her, Mackro’s post is a definite must read, more so than mine!

Anyway, onward and along…

The garden on March 22, 2011

And the radishes are already coming through! A general update via video:

Next visit will be next Tuesday and we’ll see how things go then…

Udon with tofu, bok choy, tomato and more…

Udon with bok choy, tomato, tofu, etc.

It’s been a while — far too long, really! — since I put up something I’ve cooked, and tonight was time to rectify that. Having picked up my latest basket and seen some baby bok choy, I wanted to do something with that, and a scrounge online turned up this really fantastic recipe — seriously, check it all out, lots of photos, plenty of detail, the works.

My big change here was to use udon rather than the thick rice noodle indicated, in that no such noodle as described was available in my local Japanese market (I could have easily have missed it). Other than that I went at it, adjusting portion sizes down for a single-person dish. (I used some minced ginger I had to hand as well rather than julienning, FWIW.)

Quite delicious, very filling — give it a whirl!

AMG reviews through mid-March

And yeah, some major catchup here! A lot of great records have been coming out…

Jane Kennaway — IOU
Fabio Orsi — Stand Up Before Me, Oh My Soul
Roger O’Donnell — Songs From the Silver Box
Ellen Allien — Dust Remixes
Kiila — Silmät Sulkaset
Goddamn Electric Bill — Jazz
Ancient Astronauts — Into Bass and Time
Korperschwache — Evil Walks
The Flowers of Hell — O
Canasta — The Fakeout, the Tease and the Breather
Slumberwood — Yawling Night Songs
Belong — Common Era
Autumn’s Grey Solace — Eifelian
Demdike Stare — Voices of Dust
Demdike Stare — Liberation Through Hearing
Demdike Stare — Forest of Evil
Chaim — Alive

A garden catchup — planting has begun!

The past few weeks have mostly been about maintenance rather than anything else but growing season was coming soon. I’ve been taking various photos and videos along the way but rather than link them all I’ll just point you to my YouTube channel and my Flickr set for the moment.

The big change was this past weekend, however, with the actual planting taking place. My most recent video was taken a few days later, and has me explaining what’s been planted where:

So at this point forward it’ll be about the usual care and maintenance, and the hopes that things will take — we’ve got a good garden visit schedule worked out and there’s some rain due this weekend as well, so it’ll all continue from there!