It’s still cold in Beijing, so I thought of making something to warm me up. Soup for the non-chef!
Usually French onion soups call for beef stock to give it that oomph salty savory flavor, but I replaced this with a tomato, more wine and herbs. The result was pretty good, if I do say so myself. This is how it was done. You will need:
1/4 large red onion
4-5 cloves garlic (I likes the garlic)
1 slice of bread
Basil and thyme (I just have the chopped basil and powdered thyme, but real leaves are always better)
Salt and ground black pepper
Cheese (most recipes call for gruyere, which is expensive, so I just used whatever I had— fresh cheddar, but others say Swiss is good too)
Chop onion into strips. Throw in pot to caramelize (burn) while you
Mince garlic. You can use butter (yum) or fat (yumm) but I used EVOO because I didn’t have any of the either :(
And this is vego
Throw garlic in there
Throw in pot once onions caramelized.
Add basil and thyme. I used about a tsp each.
Toast bread while this is happening. Feel free to herb-ify your bread with basil and garlic if you like.
Add ze wine! How much? Not enough to make you drunk. About a cup’s worth. Add two cups of water and salt + pepper to taste.
Let it all simmer for about 5 minutes. Then pour in a bowl.
Bring out your bread! Chop it up to make your croutons. Place croutons on top of soup. Grate cheese on top. Place in oven.
Leave in oven till cheese is spotty with a nice golden brown. Enjoy!
Photo from Reuters
A week ago, 12 Chinese fishermen were caught with their boat run aground in the Tubbataha Reef by Palawan Island in the Philippines. Their 500 ton monstrosity of a boat collided into the UNESCO World Heritage Site, where it stayed lodged until authorities found and arrested the crew members. On their boat, authorities found more than 20,000 pounds of pangolin meat.
There were two problems that this situation brings up:
1. the fishermen/poachers were fishing/poaching illegally in (non-disputed) Philippine waters/land and
2. their boat was carrying a reported 20,000 pounds of pangolin meat and pangolins are a protected, endangered species
Got this message from friends today. Not entirely sure if its true. The internet is going around wondering the same thing. A woman from Singapore is asking this question on a forum (bunch of Singaporeans have gotten this too apparently), but its also running around Sina Weibo, it seems.
I suppose it wouldn’t hurt to become vegetarian for a while.
“TV news just broadcasted. temporarily pls do not eat beef or beef products due to the transport to Suzhou of 570 head of cattle had infected with Bacillus anthracis. Suzhou just finished an emergency meeting. Pls notify as many friends and family members. a friend just called and shared that the avian flu is very serious! Beijing Union Medical College Hospital leadership dinner had announce that news and this news had blocked from the outside media! This was almost similar like a decade ago the spread of SARS. It is advisable to wash our hands frequently, avoid drinking tap water and dont eat unsolicited poultry pork and raw eggs.There is no available treatment yet.”
Hello, world. It’d been too long since I’d written anything of substance. Let me explain. I found a marvelous fake book cart parked neatly outside Tsinghua’s Main Gate that I like to frequent.
The lady bookseller knows me. She still tells me a book is work 30rmb and we laugh and haggle it down to 15, though I know I can get it for 10. (No, I don’t feel bad for buying fake books. I’m a student, nuff said.)
I’ve also visited (and slobbered with joy all over) the new PageOne bookstore in the Sanlitun Village and the Beijing Foreign Bookstore in Wangfujing. All lovely, lovely places with very reasonable prices. Mumble, mumble, Bookworm, mumble, exploitative, grumble.
Since then, I’ve been spending much less time on the internets. Plus, I’ve been busy trying to BS my way through my thesis/portfolio requirements.
I will dig into the archives and put up old essays for my ever adoring fans (right). And hopefully be able to find the balance between books, boys and bazookas.
I did that for a little aliteration fun (heehee, that too). No, not really bazookas. But I would like to end this entry with a hilarious and appreciatively accurate review of 50 Shades of Grey, which I hope never to read unless someone pays me good money to. Honestly, I can’t decide which I’d rather not read, that or Twilight.
The talk is titled: Perseverance and Innovation, San Francisco, the Innovation Capitol of the World. It should have been titled a 15 minute Q&A with Mayor Ed Lee on a bunch of things San Francisco is doing now.
It was easily a huge disappointment. First off, the talk was very poorly publicized. This talk was in English— I’m an international grad student in Tsinghua University and only a handful I asked knew about this. There were no posters of it anywhere on campus, other than in the building itself. It’s like they keeping it on the down-low on purpose.
Then, you show up only to be completely lost in the building. No arrows, nothing. There was that one sign. Ask anyone and they’ll either not know what you’re talking about or just mumble something about the third floor.
For all the cool, innovative, new and awesome things that San Francisco stands for, this was a far cry from it. It was stuffy, formal and controlled. If Creativity walked in the room, she would’ve suffocated from the lack of fresh thinking in there.
Mayor Ed Lee talked about San Francisco’s transportation, “different modes of transportation will accommodate ideas for the future”, and the new the healthcare and bio-life sciences industries San Francisco is investing in to compliment their already booming tourism one.
And that was it. To be fair, I was late and only managed to slip in as a lady with the mic began her question with “I’m not actually a Tsinghua student…”.
But by 10:23, our host merrily said that there were many questions we could all ask Mayor Lee but he had to get going, so let’s wrap this up. Then proceeds to clap, signaling the end of the “talk”. The clapping and thank yous stop at about 10:25.
Thirty seconds later, Mayor Lee and his party are out of the door.
A minute later, the fuwuyuan is cleaning up the water bottles on the stage.
Two minutes later, the lights are being switched off.
I’m left sitting there wondering, what the hell just happened? Open to discussion.