Here’s all the demonic summoning symbols you’re likely to use on a daily basis, in handy flashcard form. All you need to do is print it up and stick it over your monitor, so it’s handy when you need it.
An anonymous reader writes “N+1 has an interview with Jacob Appelbaum (who is part of the Tor project) titled ‘Leave Your Cellphone at Home.'” Jacob has a lot to say about privacy, data security, and surveillance. He ought to know. Among other things, he’s had his email seized, been relieved of his phone, been the subject of a National Security Letter (video) and generally had his travel disrupted.
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
I remember being mildly overwhelmed this time last year. I was teaching myself how to design this blog, learning how to photograph food, studying how to edit said photographs, and making lists of recipes and stories that I wanted to write about. When Labor Day arrived I was ecstatic to have a holiday which meant more time to devote to the blog. Lunch time came, my stomach growled and all I wanted to do was work on the blog. I was craving something home-cooked and simple, yet decadent. And the last thing I wanted to do, ironically, was to cook.
As I rummaged through our fridge, surveyed our cupboards and impatiently tapped my fingers on the kitchen counter, I caught a glimpse of puff pastry sheets and immediately thought — puff pastry pizza! As I imagined myself — for some reason in slow motion — biting into the flaky, buttery, cheesy, crispy pizza, I knew it would be every bit as decadent as I wanted and would require hardly any labor. Perfect for the holiday.
This year, I recreated the dish to make it a Perfect Morsel tradition and to celebrate how far I’m come with this blog. I used the store-bought puff pastry as the crust and topped it with sauteed onions and garlic, heirloom tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, pine nuts and fresh basil. I wanted something simple that would use the last of my summer tomatoes and whatever caught my eye. You should feel free to be as creative as you want with your toppings. Your choices are limitless!
Serve as an entree with a lemony salad or as appetizers for a party. And leftovers? Who doesn’t like pizza for breakfast? Especially puff pastry pizza.
Wishing you a labor-free and scrumptious holiday!
Click here for photographs of each step and a printable list of ingredients & directions.
1 sheet puff pastry, defrosted
2 medium heirloom tomatoes, thinly sliced
?? medium red onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
1 cup fresh mozzarella ball or ciliegini
2 tbsp pine nuts
?? cup fresh basil
?? tsp dried oregano
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
?? tsp fresh ground black pepper
?? tsp red chili flakes, optional
1. Preheat the oven to 425??F.
2. Lightly flour kitchen counter or cutting board and roll out the sheet with a rolling pin roll until it is about a 12in by 14in rectangle. Make sure not to roll it out too thin since it may tear. If it does tear, simply pinch the hole to close it up and lightly roll with the pin. Luckily, puff pastry is forgiving.
3. Transfer sheet on to a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil. Fold the edges about 1/4in and pinch to create a crust.
4. Prick the pastry all over with a fork. This prevents it from puffing up too much, especially in the middle, while cooking.
5. Place sliced tomatoes on a separate baking dish lined with aluminum foil. Drizzle olive oil and sprinkle salt over the tomatoes. Roasting them concentrates their flavor and removes some of their juice, ensuring a non-soggy crust.
6. Place both the puff pastry and tomatoes in the oven for 10 mins. Keep an eye on the puff pastry as it may need to be popped in the middle again if it bubbles up too much.
7. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium size saute pan. Add sliced onions and saute for about 5 mins. Add Garlic and saute for another 5 mins. Take off the stove and set aside.
8. Take the puff pastry and tomatoes out of the oven and set aside to cool for a few minutes. The pastry should be a light golden brown and the tomatoes should be juicy and slightly shriveled.
9. Slice mozzarella into quarters, if using ciliegini. Alternatively, use either sliced fresh mozzarella or shredded mozzarella.
10. Pluck the basil leaves off the stem, lightly rinse in water and pat dry. Place the leaves on top of each other, creating a stack, and cut into thin strips across the leaves.
11. Top the pastry with cheese and then the rest of the toppings — onions, garlic, tomato and pine nuts. Sprinkle with salt, black pepper, oregano and 1 tablespoon of the julienned basil. Make sure to spread the toppings evenly across the pastry and about 1/2in from the edge.
12. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and place in the oven for another 10 mins or until the cheese has melted to a golden brown.
13. Remove from oven, sprinkle with the rest of the basil and the chili flakes (optional). Cut into single serving sizes and serve with a side salad. And remember, leftovers make great breakfast!
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes
Number of servings: 4
I???ve had my eye on the section of the Raspberry Pi forum dedicated to ???bare metal??? programming of the popular $35 computer platform. Bare metal programming is the practice of writing code for the CPU without an operating system (like Linux) on board. Bare metal didn???t look exactly inviting to an intermediate programmer like me, but that just changed. In this online course from Alex Chadwick of the University of Cambridge Computer Lab, you can learn how to use assembly code to write your own mini-OS for the Raspberry Pi. Going this route means basic things become quite a bit more difficult to do, but if you???re interested in how operating systems work with memory and the CPU, this looks like a great way to learn.
Filed under: Embedded Systems
Why are college neighborhoods often food wastelands? Yes, students are notoriously cheap, but the world is full of inexpensive yet delicious eats, so that’s no excuse. Do campus area spots rely on a captive audience of car-deprived students? Or are they just too drunk to care about food? It seems like every large university is surrounded by boring chain restaurants mixed with mediocre pizza, burgers, and Thai food.
Several subpar taco joints are the only thing distinguishing the food around UT-Austin from the selection around other large state schools. There are plenty of restaurant choices to accommodate more than 50,000 hungry students, but most of them aren’t particularly great. I beg you???venture outside the UT area to experience the full breadth of the unique Austin food scene. But if you find yourself stuck around the school, you’ll be just fine if you stick to these recommendations.
Blueberry, chocolate, and plain glazed doughnuts at Ken’s Donuts
For a sweet treat, Ken’s Donuts sells a variety of glazed donuts 24/7, and it’s emblematic of Austin doughnut culture. Try the sour cream doughnut– it has just enough tang to counter the sugary glaze. You can also pick up a delicately spicy potato samosa for later.
For a heartier breakfast, Kerbey Lane is a casual stand-by even though regulars seem down on the restaurant’s recent redesign. They also do sandwiches, burgers, and a seasonal locavore menu. But Kerbey does breakfast best. Choose from a large selection of flavored pancakes (the gingerbread are popular), or get the Eggs Francisco???an English muffin topped with scrambled eggs, avocado, crispy bacon, and smothered in their famous queso.
Ultimate Roast Beef Sandwich at Fricano’s Deli
University students and employees are always in search of a quick lunch, so the sandwich zone is a particularly dangerous minefield of hit-or-miss spots. Fricano’s Deli cranks out huge sandwiches on bread that’s toasted to chewy perfection. I’m saddened their garlic roast beef sandwich is no longer on the menu, but the new ultimate roast beef sandwich with coleslaw, pepperoncinis, and horseradish is a worthy summer substitute. Treat yourself to some of the best chocolate chip cookies in town for dessert. Fricano’s has one downfall: I always order my sandwiches without tomatoes because they’re usually mealy.
Try Verts Kebap if you’re bored by traditional deli sandwiches. The two owners are former MBA students who missed the doner kebabs available in their native Germany. This German fast food, originally introduced by the large Turkish population, is an excellent alternative to Chick-fil-A’s choke-hold on campus. Pita is stuffed with your choice of humanely-raised lamb and beef, chicken, or vegetables and topped with garlic yogurt or hot sauce.
Trailer Park Taco at Torchy’s Tacos
There are tons of Tex-Mex fusion taco joints in town, but Torchy’s Tacos is one of the best. A true Austin success story, Torchy’s started as a food truck in 2006 and has since expanded into a bonafide taco empire. Tortillas are piled high with toppings like fried chicken, green chile pork, or smoked brisket, but they’re known for their fried avocado. They always have a selection of Maine Root sodas on the fountain, and their chips and salsa are surprisingly excellent.
Beef and Cheese Pie at Boomerang’s
I wish Boomerang’s were open past 8pm because their Australian meat pies would make the ultimate late night snack. All of them are wrapped in the same flaky and buttery crust, but stick to the standard beef pies seasoned aggressively with onions and Worcestershire sauce. It is also one of the few spots in Austin that sells Coopers beers.
Those in search of something lighter can stop at Tom’s Tabooley for a taste of old Austin. Around since 1977, this place is a throwback to times when tabbouleh, hummus, and falafel were obscure vegetarian health food. The relaxed atmosphere of board games and comfy chairs encourages guests to stay awhile. My favorite item, strangely enough, is their fudge???flavored deeply with cocoa, it’s the best pick-me-up if you’re ever feeling down.
Frites at Hopfields
There are many places to pound some beers near UT, but recently opened Hopfields has added some down-to-earth sophistication to the bar scene. This gastropub serves casual French favorites like a jambon beurre sandwich, steak frites and salade Ni??oise to complement its extensive draught beer selection and sm
all wine list. Those who prefer something lighter can snack on marcona almonds, olives, or artisan cheeses. Don’t miss the best fries in Austin: twice fried in peanut oil, served warm, sprinkled with coarse salt and a little tarragon, and served with a side of house made aioli.
For a pub experience approved by both Englishmen and UT chemical engineers, hit up Crown & Anchor Pub. I’ve scoured Austin’s best burger lists, hoping that Crown will someday get a shout-out because they serve my favorite cheeseburger in town.The bun to meat ratio is perfect, and it’s best served alongside a pitcher of Shiner Bock.
Octopus takoyaki topped with kimchi from Love Balls
This food truck is stepping up the neighborhood’s drunk food game by staying open until 2am. Love Balls specializes in Japanese street food like takoyaki???Japanese pancake balls stuffed with octopus or mushrooms. They’re crisp on the outside and gooey on the inside. These balls could convert anyone into an octopus fan, as the filling is savory, balanced, without the rubbery texture. They’re best smothered in spicy kimchi.
So your parents are treating you to dinner? There’s actually respectable fine dining right on campus inside the University owned AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center. Over the past four years, Chef Josh Watkins has transformed The Carillon into one of the top restaurants in town. This is no small feat considering its location, and the crispy pork belly is a can’t-miss dish.
This is about the simplest thing you can do with silken tofu, and also one of the most delicious.
The tofu is heated, and good quality soy sauce, chili oil, and sesame oil are poured over. To garnish, minced pickles, scallions and cilantro. It’s that easy. The only cooking involved is heating up the tofu, which you do by placing the whole block of tofu in a pot of boiling water.
You want to use these pickles, made from the stems of certain varieties of mustard greens. Look for “zha cai” in the Chinese grocery store. (The Chinese also pickle the leafy part of the greens, which are often used in stir-fries with pork.) The stems are salted, pressed, and dried before being rubbed with chili powder and left to ferment, so that the resulting pickle is salty, sour, and spicy with a crisp yet tender texture.
The preparation works best with silken tofu because it is so pudding-like and lends itself to being treated as a canvas for other ingredients. You could, I suppose, cut the block up into squares, but I like the unevenness of scooping up slabs of the tofu, so they appear roughly hewn.
Every time I make this I remember how good it is, the way the soft scoops of tofu are bound by the oils and the soy sauce, so that everything comes together in a palate of bold colors and flavors. There’s the heat of the chili oil, countered by the cooling cilantro; the richness of the sesame oil, cut through with sour pickles.
And I always use the best quality soy sauce I have on hand, because with a dish this simple, there’s not much you can do in the way of disguise.
About the author: Born in Shanghai and raised in New Mexico, Chichi Wang currently resides in Manhattan, where she divides her time between writing, cooking, and tracking down the best noodles in the city. Visit her blog, Mostly Tripe.
Those color catching laundry sheets work wonders in the wash, but they can be pricey considering they’re single use. Thankfully they’re easy to make with a few ingredients, and the homemade versions work just as well.
To roll your own, all you need are a few white washcloths (bar mops or other small white cloth will do), some water, and some washing soda, aka sodium carbonate. Washing soda (sometimes called soda ash) isn’t hard to find; Amazon has 5lb bags for $15, or 3.5lb boxes for $10. Warm up the water, mix in the washing soda, and soak the washcloths. Then just hang the cloth to dry. When they’re completely dry, toss them into the wash like you would the disposable kind.
That’s all there is to it. You’ll need to soak the washcloth after each use, but you get a lot of mileage out of the washing soda, and you don’t have another sheet to throw away with every load of laundry. I used to buy color catchers to pick up any leaching dye in the wash, but considering how easy they are to make, the DIY option may be worth a try.
Photo by Bell and Jeff.