Golden Fish & Chips

Good fish ‘n’ chips are one of those things I’m not sure where to get in this town. (Also, awesome Thai food. *sigh*)

However, Golden Fish & Chips has opened in the plaza at Weber and Bridgeport here in Waterloo (between Sobeys and Moores), and this pleases me.

Yeah, it’s in a strip plaza, yeah, the sign ain’t anything fancy. The food, however, speaks for itself. Andrew’s now had both takeout and eat-in there, and I have eaten in.

The place is clean, roomy, and there’s a takeout lane from the front door to the back counter, which seems to please Andrew greatly. The service was fast and neither hover-y nor absent.

The fish was generous, meaty, and a good cut. The batter was thin, crisp, and not greasy. The fries were real potatoes, with skins, crisp, and not overly salted. What more could a girl ask for? Nom. (You get coleslaw and tartar sauce, too, of course.)

They have several kinds of fish and other seafoods on the menu, and for healthier fare do baked fish (with a crumb crust, I believe) and salad and whatnot. (Kinda curious to try the baked fish. And the shrimps.)

Dinner for Andrew and I, with beers, was a bit over $30. Yes, you will find cheaper fish ‘n’ chips in town, but will you really want to eat it?

I am pleased that the place is within walking distance of home, and will go again. (I already sent the work guys for lunch the other day.) You should, too. Because if they go out of business and I no longer know where to get good fish ‘n’ chips I will be very grouchy.

Maybe I am kind of a big thing in Uzbekistan…

*The subject line refers to a Twitter joke from earlier today. To my knowledge I am not a thing of any import in Uzbekistan.

Anyway, Sherry alerted me to our nominations for Best Personal Blog at the Canadian Blog Awards. (We’re about halfway down the list.)

I don’t know who nominated me/us (‘fess up for smoochies!), but it’s very cool to be in the company of awesome folks like our daughter (first on the list — makes a mamma proud…)

Kudos to everyone on the list — you have friends and fans who think you rock, and what’s better than that? 🙂

Bow down before Waterloo!

For we are the nerd royalty of the woooooorld!

(Or perhaps of the universe…?) 🙂

Professor Stephen Hawking to Regularly Visit Canada’s Perimeter Institute as Distinguished Research Chair

Of course we started speculating about this as soon as Prof. Turok’s appointment as Executive Director was announce. (He and Hawking are friends, and Hawking’s been critical of the scientific establishment in the UK.)

Now we just have to organize to implement Sherry’s idea to entice him to stay here. Heh.

It’s an honour just to be nominated…

So I have been nominated as one of Canada’s Most Influential Women in Social Media.

I barely qualify, but it was nice of Tamera to add me to the nominations. I know some of the other ladies on the list, and they’re all very cool and very smart. (I could totally take some of them in arm wrestling, and maybe even Trivial Pursuit…)

Also thinkin’ I need a less bitchy looking picture on our company About page. Heh.

Oh, and yes, I am on the list, and yes, the company I work for is providing some of the analysis, but fear not! I didn’t do the engagement processing! That was done by one of our co-ops, so it’s all on the up and up. 🙂

A weekend assortment

Yesterday I endeavored to recreate the glorious soup that was served at Sherry and Jodil’s wedding. It was butternut squash with, as well as I could determine, subtle additions of curry and maple syrup.

The result wasn’t exact, but it was a pretty good first try. I think next time I’d bump up the curry to two teaspoons (and potentially move up from there), and possibly a bit more maple syrup. I don’t think it needs 1/3 of a cup, but maybe a couple more tablespoons than 1/4 of a cup.

Anyway, since it’s soup season, here you go:

1 large butternut squash
2 medium cloves garlic
1 medium onion
8 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 cup milk
1/4 cup maple syrup (dark is better, don’t even think about using fake crap)
1 1/2 tsp curry powder
olive oil
cinnamon
nutmeg
black pepper

To roast the squash, cut it in half lengthwise and remove the seeds and pulp. Brush with olive oil and roast cut side down on a cookie sheet at about 375F for an hour (or until there’s no resistance anywhere if you stab it with a fork). Remove it from the oven and let it cool.

In a large pot (I have a stock pot that’s either 12 or 20 quarts, can never remember) add the stock and turn heat on fairly low (like about 4).

Sauté the onions with a drop of olive oil either in a separate pan or in the bottom of the stock pot on higher heat before you add the stock. Once the onions are tender and starting to brown slightly, add them to the stock pot and turn down the heat.

Scoop the flesh from the squash (I discovered a gelato paddle works fabulously well for this — don’t ask me why my parents have a gelato paddle…) and add it to the stock pot. Finely mince the garlic, add it to the pot. Pour the maple syrup into the pot, too.

Add the spices — curry powder, a shake of cinnamon, nutmeg, and pepper to taste. (There would have been maybe 1/8 tsp of cinnamon and nutmeg — they’re strong, and you don’t want them to be dominant flavours here.)

Stir the soup well until everything’s mixed in, and then leave it to simmer, stirring occasionally. I turned the heat off after an hour and a half or two hours, then added the milk (cow or soy, doesn’t matter, can use cream if you want to make it richer).

Then I used a stick blender to puree the soup til it was smooth. If the soup gets too thick, just add water very slowly and stir after you’ve pureed the soup. You want it to be thick and to coat a spoon well if you dip it. You can do the pureeing in a food processor in batches, too. Just be careful you don’t splash yourself.

Serve it with a nice, hearty bread, and you can garnish it with a dollop of sour cream or a swirl of olive or truffle oil if you like, but no garnish is necessary.

In other news, I finally found a friend for my niece:

Genevieve Louella, Cabbage Patch Kid

My SIL has been wanting to get her one, but apparently all the Cabbage Patch Kids now are “specialized” and fairly lame. So I went through the downstairs closet at my parents’ place and found mine. She looks not too bad for 20+ years old. The elastic in her track pants is pretty weak now, and her hair is a bit discoloured from the fire.

Her name is Genevieve Louella, and once upon a time, she had socks. (My niece doesn’t like socks, either.) Her hair also wasn’t in braided pigtails, but I did that so long ago that the elastics had rotted so I had to put in new ones.

I found my original Care Bear Cousins raccoon, too. Wikipedia tells me:

Bright Heart Raccoon: The smartest of the Cousins, Bright Heart Raccoon is a walking supercomputer who can solve problems thinking logically, and helps his friends on their toughest dilemmas. He is purple and his symbol is a yellow heart-shaped light bulb. Bright Heart Raccoon is a fan favorite.

Yes, even my toys were nerds. 🙂

On a similar note, a message on behalf of my original Fisher Price castle:

Fisher Price princess

Fuck Disney Princesses. 🙂

And finally, important lessons from a toddler:

toddler in tights

Life is more fun without pants.

toddler with stuffed dogs

Two puppies are better than one.

toddler lunching

Food tastes better when you eat with your fingers. 🙂

(Also: my baby is cuter than your baby. Nyer!)

Oops

Yep, fail. No post yesterday.

No excuse other than it was a busy day, and when all the running around was finally done, it was 10:30-ish, and crawling into bed with my book was on my mind, not posting.

Heading up to my parents’ shortly, so won’t be much substantial posted this weekend, most likely. Here’s just hoping we don’t get buried in snow. 🙂

Unphotographable

This is a picture I did not take of Tony, my chiropractor’s husband/office manager, and myself, pausing in the process of me paying him, to spontaneously and simultaneously rock out when AC/DC came on the radio.

Drained: A Vignette

Canadian Blood Services, evening, bustling with activities.

The players: Good Melle, Naughty Melle, many student firefighters, assorted nurses, volunteers, and other donors.

Upon completing the questionnaire and arriving in the back area of the clinic to await the nurse interview portion of the festivities…

Good Melle: There are an awful lot of men in uniform back here.

Naughty Melle: Hot diggity!

Good Melle: There are a lot of folks with first-time donor pins this evening.

Naughty Melle: Hmm, those uniform patches say “Firefighter”. Nom.

Good Melle: Ahh, group blood drive season, and these guys are Conestoga College students.

Naughty Melle: Those dudes drinking apple juice are kinda hot.

Good Melle: Man, it’s really busy tonight. Not sure I’ll be outta here by 6:30.

Naughty Melle: Ahh yes, the metabolism of youth. It’s how one can both eat many doughnuts and have such sculpted biceps.

Good Melle: God, they’re young looking.

Naughty Melle: Hey look, that one’s pants aren’t oversized. Nice booty.

Good Melle: So these guys would be… 20-ish? Oy vey…

Naughty Melle: However do they get their hair so fetchingly disheveled…?

Good Melle: Starting to feel kinda dirty… Is it my turn to see the nurse next?

Naughty Melle: They’re so cute when they goof around together. Mmm… locker room…

At this point it was my turn to be interviewed, and shortly thereafter my impure thoughts were duly punished. I don’t know if it was because the nurse who handled my donation lacked “the touch”, or because my right arm had blood drawn from it less than a week ago, but this donation hurt worse than any I can remember both during and for a couple hours after (and I’ve given about 40 times).

Unsurprisingly, Naughty Melle remains unapologetic.