Monday, February 27, 2006

Cooloola Camping

Despite threatening rain, we ducked up the Sunshine Coast for a bit of 4WDing in and around the Cooloola Coast (just above Noosa) and some camping at Lake Cootharaba.

Saturday was spent tooling around state forests and lunching in the rain in National Parks. Highlight of the day... I got to drive for about 30 minutes off road... and under the motivation of learning through doing, Husband-person instructed me to drive THROUGHT a huge puddle, without either of us getting out to check the depth, mud consistency etc etc. You guessed it, I got bogged.

All credit to the Landrover door seals - we had water more than 1/2 up the wheels, defintely over the door edges, and no water got into the car. Poor Husband-person had to climb out the window, and he and Jeremy effected a speedy recovery with a snatch strap.

Lesson for the day: NEVER EVER turn your car off if the exhaust pipe is under water... diesel and water in the engine is not a good combination.

Sunday was a relaxed affair, spent willing the tent to dry (after showers the previous night) and then dropping into Mooloolaba for fish and chips on the way home (who knew you could get marinated grilled tuna steaks at a fish and chip shop).

Despite the rain, my new and exciting head cold, the garage filled wtih drying camping equipment and the mossie bites, a good time was had by all!

Friday, February 24, 2006

Peppermint Sponge (by request)

What Spongebob eats while waiting for the strippers to come on.

1 envelope or 3 teaspoons of Davis Gelatine
1/4 cup hot water
½ pint cold water
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons of lemon juice
Peppermint flavouring (I note here no quantity is given, so JUST GO NUTS)
2 egg whites
Pinch of salt
Green colouring, if liked (if you don’t like, just make disturbing white peppermint sponge)

Dissolve gelatine in hot water. Heat sugar and water to boiling point; cook for a few minutes. Remove, add dissolved gelatine. Leave to cool. Add lemon juice and flavouring. Beat egg whites with salt (I prefer using a mix master, but to each his own), and fold into the mixture while it is thickening. Colour to a delicate green (but only if you like a green fluffy dessert). Place in a serving bowl and serve with chocolate sauce.


Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Davis Gelatine Recipe Ideas

Around Christmas, DJ Bebe presented me with this fabulous culinary guide to gelatine (yes, it has really taken me 2 months to write this post). I believe it was discovered in some of her mother’s recipe books. If you ever need to make:

  • Chicken and Pineapple in Apsic
  • Spiced Tomato Brawn
  • Mint Jelly Cubes
  • Midday salad (cucumber, pineapple and mint in layers of jelly)
  • Fruit Salad Sparkle (yes, ginger beer and jelly, TOGETHER)
  • Peppermint Sponge
  • Milk Jelly

Let me, know, I can photocopy the relevant pages.

Personally, the highlight for me was the gelatine based Christmas pudding. I think we will have Christmas 2006 at my house this year so I can make this delicious, rubbery dessert.

But the Davis Gelatine Book doesn’t stop there… inside it’s full of handy hints:

  • Drink two teaspoons of gelatine a day in fruit juice to strengthen your nails FOR FOUR MONTHS. Yuch. I am sick of jello after 2 days.
  • Weight control – fill your stomach with jelly and cut down on those nasty cravings
  • Refresh your blankets in a rinse of jelly
  • Stiffen your linens, cottons and silks with, yes, you guessed it, jelly. You can also stiffen your collars, lace (nothing like a stiff peniour), and your petticoats.
  • Prevent your nylons from snagging by rinsing in a jelly solution… ick, imagine how sticky that would be at the end of the day.

Finally, the booklet ends with a stern health warning:
Why you should always use Davis Packaged Gelatine

Housewives are warned against purchasing Gelatine in ‘loose’ forms, that is not properly printed and sealed packets. Loose gelatine can be gelatine not manufactured for food purposes, but for Technical usage [oh my god, technical usage gelatine, no get it away] and may contain chemical impurities. Loose gelatine is easily contaminated on exposure to air, it readily takes up moisture and in that state is apt to develop bacteria.

Because it is impossible to detect technical gelatine on appearance, the Australian State Governments have wisely directed that gelatine for consumption must be properly packaged and labelled with the name of the manufacturer and the declaration ‘Edible Gelatine – for food’.

Thank goodness for that. We may be running out of water, and the health system is a debacle, but at least my gelatine products will be pure.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

More frogs

Originally uploaded by Sponky's Modern Life.
We discovered we are the home to not only our laundry door dwelling frog, but a whole HOST of sedgefrogs, living in the herbs, on the fence and in the grass clippings. Now everytime we mow the lawn, I am saying little prayers in hope they make the froggies get out of the way of the mower, because shooing them away from the mower doesn't seem to work.

Washing up as modern art

Originally uploaded by Sponky's Modern Life.
We had our first dud batch of beer (a pale ale that may have sat a bit long over Xmas). Sigh. The only thing to do was bite the bullet and undo, empty and wash all the bottles. All 30 of them. Undoing was the messy part - they foamed up when they were opened so after about 5 bottles, all which spraye me, I smelled like a brewery. And washing 30 beer bottles is never much fun - but at least I can make exciting bottle sculptures to amuse myself.

Monday, February 13, 2006

New levels of relationship confidence

Our plans for Valentine's day:

Sponky: Go to see Brokeback Mountain with Miss P
Husband-person: Go to the one day match with Jeremy

Sponky: Bringing it to zombies everywhere

In ongoing effots to keep me entertained, Husband-person bought me a copy of Doom 3 for the Xbox. Since Friday, all my spare time has been spent slaughtering zombies with shotguns, machine guns, a chainsaw (extremely fun but you have to get in quite close, so the zombies can then get you), plasma rifles, grenades and a chain gun (very good - cuts them right in half!).

All credit to the guys who wrote this game - it's basically a lot of walking around IN THE DARK while spooky noises play. You spent most of the time hurriedly switching between flashlight and shotgun, and listening intently to see if that is a machinery noise or the noise of something coming to kill you. I have never had such a visceral response to a computer game before - I have spent the entire time playing it with my brain going "what the fuck are you doing, turn around, go back up the stairs and pretend those zombies aren't there", with my heart rate going at a million miles an hour.

Husband-person is also getting alot of value from the game, as he is entertained by my yells of "what the fuck was that!!!", and "I shot you in the head, lie down already", and a few other things which cannot be repeated on the internet as my mother reads it.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

The Man in Black

Everytime an ad for 'Walk the Line' comes on tv, Husband-person and I have THIS EXACT CONVERSATION:

Me: Let's go see that
Husband-person: But what's it ABOUT?
Me: Johnny Cash, June Carter-Cash, music, drugs, love story. You know - Johnny Cash!
Husband-person: Who?

I refused to believe a person who has been on this earth 30 years doesn't know who Johnny Cash is, so I acquired some copies of his music this week and was listening to it while preparing dinner, in an effort to jog Husband-person's memory (I mean, who hasn't heard 'A boy named Sue'?). At one point during dinner preparation I turned around to see him dancing, in a style that can only be described as demented turkey dancing. Back and forth neck movements combined with an arm action last seen on MC Hammer.

Me: What are you doing???
Husband-person: Dancing. It's country (as if this was meant to explain the style of his dancing)

I might wait until it's on video and then watch it myself.

Update: Friday 7/02/06
I am forced to revise my previous animal comparison. It wasn't, in fact, demented turkey dancing AT ALL. It was demented LEMUR dancing, ala Madagascar.