om nom nom nom

Noms Make Everything Better

Sigyn is feeling better today, thanks in no small part to the human female’s mother’s cooking.

Every morning has started with a good breakfast. This is what she fed us our first morning.

Blueberry pancakes with REAL maple syrple and peppered bacon.

Last night, she cheered Sigyn up with fried rice, egg rolls, and spring rolls.

Sigyn really appreciated the sauce for the egg rolls, which was her favorite color.

No one made me a sauce in my favorite color. But then, I didn’t break my arm, and at least the soy sauce bottle has a green label.

It really is all about the food here. At breakfast, we are asked about what we want for lunch. At dinner, we’re reminded that there are cookies and ice cream and about four dozen options for breakfast. The human male and female have even pitched in with a will. They made tzatziki to go with the Greek meatballs for lunch, and they are planning fish tacos for one of the nights we are here.

And when we aren’t making food or eating food or talking about it, we are shopping for it. There are one or two things the human female’s mother needs, and Sigyn and I have tagged along to see what a different market looks like.

I am pretty sure the market back home doesn’t stock… this.

And I find that I am absolutely okay with that.

Oh, now this is neat! The human female’s mother has taken us to her local Asian market, since she needs to purchase some more of her favorite Korean coffee. Such places are always entertaining to look in, and this emporium is exceptionally well-stocked, well-organized, and very bright and clean.

Sigyn has found something she wants to try.

Evidently the pale pink sort we have at home is not brightly colored enough.

She also thinks that these look “fun”:

Dearest, did you read the fine print on the package? They’re not actually that color, and I doubt they have smiley faces.

The human male has acquired some ramen,, along with some dumplings to prepare for the human female’s mother to try later in our visit. The human female has seized upon a package of these. Are they cookies? Are they crackers? I don’t know— and neither does she, though I think she has hopes that they will taste like the sesame cookies the human male’s former student worker’s mother made for her once.

Uh oh. I can feel it coming on. I have been very, very good all day and the urge to do some mischief is just bubbling up inside me. I’m not sure I can control myself. . .

Augh! It’s like they knew I was coming!

>|: [

Aftermath of Escape to the Big City to the West–What Followed Us Home

Let us take a look at some of the comestible goods which followed us home from the Big City to the West. In addition to the Large Market, we also visited an Asian grocery store and a couple of stores selling Japanese goods, so a bit of the resulting haul is a bit “theme-y”.

The human male is a fan of All Things Ginger and has a special fondness for ginger beer. He found two sorts he hadn’t tried, and I urged him to purchase them.

He has pronounced the lemon-lime one “horrible” (Ehehehehe! I could have told him that) and the other “okay, but not as good as my favorite one.”

What were those spices they brought home again?

Oh, now I remember. The Ras El Hanout is to replace the jar of Ras El Hanout they bought but didn’t like, which was to replace the empty jar of the Ras El Hanout that they liked a lot, but which I have made certain is no longer being manufactured.

The other jar holds Carolina Reaper pepper powder. I foresee some quality mischief of a capsacious nature in my future.

The human female is, I see, still incapable of leaving the Large Market without a quantity of gummy octopi septopi.

The way she plows through those things, they are sure end up on the CITES list before the year is out. If conservationists managed to breed them and increase their numbers during the period in which she was confined to town by the pandemic, they are about to lose what little progress was made.

This little bun-oid object game from the Asian grocrey.

It is certainly wrapped up in a fancy manner. (poke, poke, poke) What do you suppose is inside, Sigyn?

There is a filling of some sort. Any ideas?

It looks like a fossilized egg yolk, but the human female says it is lotus seed paste. Sigyn is keen to taste it.

That good, eh? (nibble nibble) It’s all right, but I think I prefer sweet red beany goo as a filling.

Great Frigga’s Hairpins! What is this…thing? I didn’t see her slip this in the basket! And she’s planning to eat it for breakfast?!

It’s… It’s staring at us.

The label on the back says, “Anpanman.” Human female, look that up and see if this is even safe to eat.

Ah. Apparently “anpan” refers to a bun filled with sweet beany goo, and there is a comic character whose head is one.

Wait. Sweet beany goo? Dare I hope?

!!!! Anpanman, I think I love you.

>|: 9

A Delicious Dish With a Ridiculous Name

We are dining in tonight.  The human female is making something with the truly regrettable name of “Baa-Squeal.”  Why?  Why indeed!

The humans call it “Baa-Squeal” because it has lamb in it.

Think about that.

Still, the finished dish, which has its inspiration the spicy dishes of Morocco, is quite tasty, so Sigyn and I are taking notes, in case we ever want to make it ourselves.

First, we make a little bouillon, since we don’t have any chicken stock on hand.

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(That is definitely the human female’s mug.)

Next, one large yellow onion needs to be made into small bits.

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I volunteer.  I like chopping things up!

We want to get a bit of caramelization on these.

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Mmm!  Not many things smell better than onions frying.

Here’s the lamb.  The human female cooked it up earlier, so Sigyn wouldn’t have to see it raw.  Occasionally that mortal uses her brain cell!

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We should start the couscous now.  It’s like itty-bitty pasta grains and is pretty much instant.  But we’re going to add some parsley to it, so it will take on some flavor as it sits.

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By Odin’s monocular vision!  Look at that sell-by date!  Luckily, it does keep well in the cold box.

Here’s a fun part.  We need little pieces of dried apricot. The easiest way to make them is with the scissors.

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I wanted to use the human female’s good sewing shears, but Sigyn said no.

Now we need some veggies.  Tomato, and there’s a yellow pepper in the cold box.

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How are those onions  doing?

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Starting to see some color.

Time for peezncarrots!

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The human female is using frozen.  I’m a Frost Giant, and I approve!

Add the bouillon, cover, and let it cook for a while.

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If this were a real cooking show, the ad would go here.

Now for the spices.  The human female throws about half the cupboard in here, but I think these will all play nicely together.

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I wanted to sneak in some oregano or rum extract or wasabi, just to make it interesting, but Sigyn said no.

More fruit is required!  Raisins are good.

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Let’s be extra-fancy tonight and put some toasted almonds on top.

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Toasting almonds are one of the few things that smell better than frying onions…

The lamb has gone in.

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The couscous is ready.  It just needs fluffing.

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Steamy!

Here’s the finished Baa-Squeal.

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The humans are saying it’s a good batch; very tasty.  Ehehehehe!  They haven’t noticed my mischief yet…

>|: [

I Have Trained Them Well

The felines enjoyed having the humans home all day, every day.   They got lots of extra cuddles and “ear-scritches.”

Now that the humans are on campus again, the Terror Twins are on their own recognizance a good portion of the day, and I have lots of time to teach them new bad habits and reinforce old ones.  Likewise, I encourage them to act out, so as to guilt-trip the humans into feeling like bad cat-parents.

Taffy Cat has to try every box that enters the house, both for taste and sitability.

kitty-box

Two paws are in.  Surely the other two will fit?

I have been working with them, honing their skills as cordless paper-shredders.

Looks like someone has been taking the lessons to heart.

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No piece of paper left unattended is safe!  (That math is the human female figuring out she has something like 35 weeks of sick leave built up.  I could help her with that…)

While Taffy has been known to bite paper every now and then, it is Flannel Cat who is the real professional.

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She always observes the proper protocol:  Knock papers off table or chair, bite the edges, scatter the resulting shreddy bits of wet confetti,

and look very, very innocent when caught in the act.

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For some reason known only to herself, she also has a real fondness for biting holes in the ridiculous footgear that Midgardians call Crocs.

bitten crocs

This perforated pair belongs to the human female.  The human male’s are similarly scarred.

I am working on a spell that would give both cats opposable thumbs.  With those and a few purloined credit cards, I think we could have some real fun…

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Tôi mệt mỏi với việc nấu ăn của người phụ nữ. Hãy để chúng tôi thử một nhà hàng mới.

There is only so much of the human female’s cooking I can take.  I think the human male feels the same way, because he suggested we get take-out tonight.  Oh, he says its by way of “supporting local businesses” and “helping the economy,” but I am fairly certain he’s just bored with her culinary efforts.

He went online and pulled up the menu for a Vietnamese place we have not tried yet.  He put in a varied order and went to fetch it.  He should be home at any moment.

And here it is!  What did we get?  What did we get?

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There could be anything in there.  It’s not moving, so I guess that’s good.

Hmm.  Styrofoam.  Still could be anything.

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Aha!  Actual food.  Shrimp spring rolls with what is looks and smells like peanut sauce.

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It’s hot out today, so it’s nice to have something cold.

And this is…

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I don’t know what.  There’s a cut-up egg roll, some meat, some pickled vegetables, what looks like rice noodles, and some little fried-ish things on top.  And a plastic container of…  It’s the right color for motor oil, but I rather suspect it isn’t.

Ehehehe.  The human female, well aware of her innate clumsiness, has decided that she needs something larger than the styrofoam container to mix the the food and the sauce in.

She has invoked a mixing bowl!  It makes it looks as if she’s prepared to inhale a whole trough full!

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Go ahead and muddle along with your sticks, mortal.  I’ve got a fork and can eat faster than you!

>|: [

I’m Just Saving Her, Really

The human female is trying to cut back on sugar.  Woman, your sad delusion that this will somehow render you somewhat less elephantine is laughable.  You don’t stand a chance with me in the house.  Have you not realized this yet?

Not when I put in your path “healthy” juice drinks like this one:

juice

“No added sugars!”  True.  Very true.  But she had made a good start on the bottle before she read the back of the label:

nutrition

And she had to drink it, because her boss and treated her and Prep Staff to a beverage at the local POOC* , and not drinking it would have been rude.

What?  Reader, you think me cruel for hoodwinking her and sabotaging her efforts to be healthier?  

Very well.  I was going to let her have a little treat because she has been trying.  I was going to let her have this interesting foreign lolly.  Doesn’t it look delicious?  Not one, but two flavors—and vitamins to boot!

lolly

Mmm.  Orange AND lemon.  But you’re right, minions.  You’re right.  I shouldn’t be putting sugar in her way.  To save her from herself, Sigyn and I will take care of this.

Come, my love.  Do you fancy one flavor over the other, or do you want to take turns licking both sides?

>|: [

*Purveyor of Overpriced Coffee

 

A New Yule Tradition–Day Four: Gastronomic Goodies

One of the best parts of being away from home for Yule is the distinct lack of the human female’s cooking.  Not that she can’t come up with usually-edible victuals, but by the crumbs in Volstagg’ beard, that woman cannot cook without making a horrific mess!  She never finishes meal preparation without the kitchen looking like Ragnarok has occurred. Not that I feel any particular guilt about skiving off without helping with the washing up, but I am weary unto death of manufacturing excuses not to.  Even I can run out of lies on occasion.

So, happy me and joyful Sigyn, we are sampling the very best this town has to offer by way of comestibles.

This little piggy went to market. This little piggy stayed home.  This little piggy had roast beef…

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And the other two piggies were similarly made out of marzipan and I nommed them while no one was looking.

By Odin’s monocular vision!  Come here, Sigyn and look at this mold for cooking eggs!

funny egg makers

How’d you like that staring at you of a morning?  The pup is cute, too, and you’d get to eat the bacon that didn’t end up in the ears.  The idea is very clever, but I wonder if the actual results would be as perfect?  Never mind, though.   With my magic, I can make your morning eggs into any shape you please.

Oooo!  I have discovered the hoard of a lifetime!

choccoins

These may be gold or they may be chocolate–either way, I win!

Look, Sigyn!  They made a drink just for me!

liquid rage

But I bet it’s false advertising.  I’ll wager my remaining uneaten chocolate gelt that it isn’t made with freshly-squeezed red pandas.

(later)

All of this wandering around and tasting and snacking on bits and pieces of things is making me cross and a little hangry for a real meal.

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Yes, yes, Sigyn.  I see the chocolate “just for me.” Very funny.

Ah.  Sigyn has chosen where we shall have lunch today.

crepe hut

That looks like a splendid place to have lunch.  And it appears they have two free seats at the counter.  I could certainly wrap myself around a waffle or two, and a mug of hot cider would hit the spot perfectly.

And someone else will be doing the dishes.

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Now This is More Like It

I threw that horrific tofudibeest roast thingy in the human female’s shopping cart, knowing that she probably wouldn’t serve it for the Yule feast, but relishing the thrill of danger because there was always the chance that she’d call my bluff and serve up that abomination.

Fortunately, Sigyn and I may have been spared such a fate, for behold!  A Mysterious Package has arrived!

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“Perishable” on a box at the human female’s work usually means oozy, woozy microbes, but on a house package, it often means EDIBLES.  And if I remember correctly, the humans received a box from this vendor last year, and it had the most amazing ham in it–so this is very promising!

Insulated foam container.  Lots of green air pillows.

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Very, very promising!

Oh, Sigyn, look!  It’s a carnivore’s treasure trove!

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Is there ham?  Is there ham?

No?

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Well, pork chops and BACON are just as good!

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Mmmm. Canadian bacon, smoked beef, weiners, and summer sausage.

Farewell, tofurky!  New plan:  We warm this all up, have ourselves a proper gorge, and curl up in a carnivorous stupor.

This is shaping up into a very fine Yule indeed!

>|: 9

A Last Meal

Prisoners slated for execution are, in civilized societies, granted one final meal.

I’m not a prisoner, but tomorrow I will be trapped in the car with the humans as we travel back to the Boring House where the food is so-so at best, and where, no doubt, the Terror Twins have been alternately puking and shedding while a friend has been watching them in our absence.  A gruesome sentence, indeed.

So this, not counting tomorrow’s breakfast is, in a sense, a last meal. 

We who are about to die salute you with fried potatoes

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I could eat all of these myself.  What are the rest of you going to have?

Sigyn is insisting I share.  Sigh.  Very well.  Just for you my love.

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Roast pork, vegetables, braised cabbage, a homemade roll, and those lovely, lovely potatoes. And there is leftover pie.

I will miss this house, where even the placemats have pictures of food.

Now, I am not a praying man because hello?  Actual Norse god here, but if I could think of any deity with more power than me who was worth importuning, I would definitely ask him (or her!) to please let the human female be a better cook in the future.  We have tasted manna on this trip, and to be cast back down to the realm of the hum-drum and the blah feels like damnation indeed.

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