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25 Apr 17:06

Renovated Craftsman with airy interiors seeks $799K in Pasadena

by Elijah Chiland
Kristen

I like this house

Built in 1911

This Pasadena Craftsman was built in 1911, but sports an airy interior that’s been carefully updated in recent years.

Sitting on a 7,810-square-foot lot, the house is fronted by a grassy lawn and a covered front porch. In the back is a sizable deck and adjoining patio, along with a landscaped yard and a detached garage that includes space for an office.

On the inside of the 1,786-square-foot residence are three bedrooms and one and a half bathrooms. Interior features include built-in shelving and bench seating, hardwood and tile floors, divided light windows, and a large stone fireplace in the living room. There’s also a formal dining room and a spacious kitchen equipped with an eight-burner gas stove.

As an added bonus, the home, which looks every bit the part of a classic Pasadena bungalow from the exterior, is eligible for preservation-related tax breaks under California’s Mills Act.

Asking price is $799,000.

Back deck
03 Apr 17:01

‘Describe yourself like a male author would’ becomes a hilarious Twitter challenge

by Tiffany Kelly
Kristen

These are really really good.

Man using typewriter with "new twitter challenge: describe yourself like a male author would" tweet

Taking a screengrab of a section in a book and posting it on Twitter has become a common way to point out problematic sentences in literature. It’s what sparked the Ready Player One backlash. Now people—mainly women—are taking that criticism a step further by writing parodies of how a male author would describe them.

It all started last week when writer Gwen C. Katz tweeted a cringe-inducing passage from a male author. This is how he wrote from a woman’s perspective: “I sauntered over, certain he noticed me. I’m hard to miss, I’d like to think—a little tall (but not too tall), a nice set of curves if I do say so myself, pants so impossibly tight that if I had had a credit card in my back pocket you could read the expiration date. The rest of my outfit wasn’t that remarkable, just a few old things I had lying around. You know how it is.”

That’s exactly how all women think, right?? Yeah, not even close. The man in question was apparently trying to prove that men can write from a woman’s perspective in fiction. Katz followed up with a tweet saying that she thinks men “can absolutely write realistic female narrators.” But, clearly, this author needed some feedback from actual women.

The author’s passage was mocked on Twitter over the weekend. And that’s when Whit Reynolds decided to come up with a Twitter challenge: “describe yourself like a male author would.”

The tweet went viral as many women wrote funny descriptions of themselves to mimic the way that the male author described his protagonist.

Hopefully, the man in question (and other authors) learned from this Twitter thread what not to do when describing a woman in fiction. As writer Kate Leth said in a tweet, don’t be scared about writing female characters, just “treat us like people.”

The post ‘Describe yourself like a male author would’ becomes a hilarious Twitter challenge appeared first on .

31 Mar 18:24

Blind Items Revealed #1

by ent lawyer
Kristen

I'm cackling!

February 28, 2018

This former Teen Mom hooked up with a guy she thought was a rich Russian oligarch but was an Uber driver from New Jersey who can do a really good Russian accent.

Farrah Abraham
31 Mar 00:28

Blind Item #17 - Oscars

by ent lawyer
Kristen

Definitely Adam Rippon. Some old member or governor was trying to compliment him and he was very disengaged. I didn't see him smile one time.

This recent A list athlete was being an a-hole to just about everyone he came into contact with. I think this recent fame is going to his head.
29 Mar 14:42

An Absurd Austin Powers-Themed Bar Pops Up in Glendale

by Farley Elliott
Kristen

obviously we have to go.

Austin Powers impersonator Richard Halpern was at the event

The two-story Electric Pussycat officially opens next month

There’s a funky new pop-up bar happening in Glendale, and it’s got the look and feel of a real-life recreation of all things Austin Powers. But unlike other high-density throwback theme bars found mostly in and around Hollywood, this new spot — called Electric Pussycat, naturally — is tucked away in a two-story bank building next to a men’s clothing store.

Los Angeles Magazine was the first to report on the new bar, which has been doing some small opening nights in anticipation of a grand reveal come April 14. Electric Pussycat is the work of the same team behind several of those come-and-go Hollywood nostalgia bar pop-ups, including Beetle House (Tim Burton themed, naturally) and the short-lived Anchorman bar called Stay Classy. As those slightly off-brand names might imply, none of these bars are actually sanctioned by the Hollywood rights-holders, but play on the fuzzy warmth of pop culture familiarity with costumes, fun drink names, some light food, and lots of kitsch.

In the case of Electric Pussycat, the former 103 Lounge on Broadway has been transformed into a mod cocktail bar with neon lighting, swinging clear plastic lounge chairs, hanging beads, and disco-style light-up flooring. The bar has also hired at least one Austin Powers impersonator and a slew of women to play Fembots, the sexualized robots from the films. The result is a drinks-fueled pop culture escapade buffeted by scantily-clad women dancing on stage and being paid to talk to people at the bar. Yes, there is also a dance pole in the middle of the room.

On the food and drink side, expect plays on the movie’s most popular names and tropes. There’s a cocktail called the Phat Bastard, plus bar staples like grilled cheese sandwiches. Electric Pussycat opens on April 14.

Electric Pussycat
103 E. Broadway
Glendale, CA

10 Mar 11:09

Blind Items Revealed #1 - Old Hollywood

by ent lawyer
Kristen

A Mr. Ed blind item. Now I've seen it all. There is a section of his wikipedia page about his mysterious death, iirc.

January 9, 2018

This former A+ list mostly television "actor" who won several awards for his acting was recognizable to every person with a television. There have always been rumors about his death and various conspiracy theories surrounding it. The reason for it is because the studio used a stand in for the actor for nine years after his death without ever telling the general public. It was only in later years after a book was published that the public realized it had been tricked by the studio. Have some fun with this one.

Bamboo Harvester (Mr. Ed)
09 Mar 00:12

Cheese And Bean Loaf, 1930 – A Vintage Recipe Test

by RetroRuth
Kristen

This recipe sounds like something the government would hand out during the depression but it was from an actual company!

Happy Friday! Who wants some beans? Some beans in the shape of a loaf?

IMG_0811

This is Cheese and Bean Loaf!

Cheese And Bean Loaf
Author: Success In Seasonings, Lea & Perrins, 1930
 
Ingredients
  • 1 pound can kidney beans
  • ½ pound American cheese
  • 1 chopped onion, medium-sized
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 1 cup Panko or dry bread crumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Lea & Perrins Sauce
Instructions
  1. Drain all the liquid from the beans. Pulse cheese and beans in food processor until they are chopped into small pieces, but not until they are mush.
  2. Cook the chopped onion in the butter until soft. Add to the cheese and bean mixture in a bowl. After the onions have cooled slightly, add the rest of the ingredients and mix them together well.
  3. Mold into a roll or loaf, or pack into a loaf pan. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle or roll in more breadcrumbs.
  4. Bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes or until well browned and the cheese has melted. Serve with your choice of sauce.
3.5.3229

 

Cheese and Bean Loaf - From Success In Seasoning, Lea & Perrins, 1930

This recipe is from a recipe book put out by Lea & Perrins (yes, the ones that make Worcestershire sauce) called Success in Seasonings which was published in 1930. IMG_0792

Beans!

IMG_0794

And a big ole chunk of Tom’s favorite, American cheese. (He actually hates it.)

IMG_0796

Here is the cheese and beans after a run through the food processor. I wanted to leave it a bit chunky to mimic being put through a grinder vs. being processed. (Note to self: You need to buy a flipping vintage grinder.)

IMG_0798

Doused with a heaping helping of Worcestershire sauce. Interesting side note: This recipe represents the last of my (large) bottle of Worcestershire sauce. I never thought I’d see the day when I went through a bottle before it expired. I guess when you cook vintage, you use a lot of the sauce.

IMG_0800

Here it is in a big, gooey log. I ended up using Panko for the bread crumbs, since the recipe didn’t specify dry or fresh breadcrumbs. Since there isn’t any liquid I was kind of worried that the Panko would be too dry, but I’m glad I went with it. The two eggs made this thing really gooey. If I would have baked it right away, I would have just packed it into a loaf pan and washed my hands of it, but since I made this earlier in the day I was able to roll it up in some parchment paper and put it in the fridge. Because I really, really wanted to make a fancy roll out of this thing.

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Fancy!

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Well then.

So it spread out quite a bit, but this actually ended up looking really good. And it smelled good, too.

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The lens got a little steamed up, but you can still see the texture.

IMG_0823

IMG_0836

“I know this taste.”

“Well, yeah. It’s American cheese.”

“No, not that. This tastes like something that you eat during a break on an endurance race. Like a mega power bar.”

“So, like it has a lot of calories?”

“Exactly.”

The Verdict: Rich

From The Tasting Notes –

This thing was dense and a little bit went a long way. This little loaf easily fed all four of us with about a quarter of it leftover. And yes, all of us ate it. Toddler TJ even powered down a slice, which was amazing because he normally is a pretty picky eater. (But maybe I have been feeding him the wrong stuff. His favorites so far are homemade applesauce with cinnamon, oatmeal, lime gelatin with cottage cheese, grilled cheese and this bean loaf. Maybe Tom and I accidentally gave TJ a mid-century palate?  Anyway, that was way off topic. Back to the loaf.) This loaf was soft, but it wasn’t as mushy as I thought it was going to be. It held its shape relatively well and I was able to slice it and serve the slices without them flopping all over the place. The taste was slightly bland, but not too bad. The flavor was mostly onion, cheese and Worcestershire and surprisingly didn’t taste like chili, which for some reason I was expecting while I was making this. We tried the loaf with a variety of bottled sauces (ketchup, mustard, hot sauce, BBQ sauce), but ended up liking steak sauce the best. The vinegar-y flavor really complimented the loaf. Overall, I would say this is a win!

04 Mar 20:45

The 1950s are alive and well in this James De Long-designed West Covina home

by Pauline O'Connor
Kristen

This house is so cool

Now seeking its second ever owner!

Gather ‘round, time capsule fans — here’s a new listing beamed straight from the Eisenhower era.

On the market for the first time, the West Covina treasure was built in 1956 by James De Long, a former Frank Lloyd Wright apprentice and fellow at FLW’s Taliesin, complete with landscaping by celebrated landscape architect Takeo Uesugi.

Measuring 1,994 square feet, the Usonian-influenced residence has four bedrooms and two baths. Notable features include sliding glass walls, built-in furnishings (including a sewing machine station) and shelving, original light fixtures, and delightful original pink formica countertops.

The home’s lush grounds feature numerous fruit trees and other mature plantings. There’s also a detached, two-car garage.

Asking price for the .34-acre property is $738,000.

 Courtesy of Kimberly Olbrich
An architectural sketch by James De Long of the McHale House living room
 Courtesy of Kimberly Olbrich
An architectural sketch by James De Long of the McHale House living room

02 Mar 19:10

Celebrities Have Feelings About Armie Hammer's Weird Chest-Scraping Video

by Samantha Sasso
Kristen

armie hammer autoshare

With just a few more days to go until Hollywood's biggest night of the year, celebrites are in a race against the clock to get red carpet-ready for the 90th Academy Awards on Sunday. While everyone else books emergency appointments with their self-tanning gurus or buys sheet masks in bulk, Armie Hammer is getting... a chest massage?

Last night, the Call Me By Your Name actor posted a video of an unidentified person rolling a handheld orange tool across his chest. "Pain is beauty.... #freethenipple #fasciascraping," he wrote alongside the confusing clip. So, was he pulling a 40-Year-Old Virgin and waxing his chest before the big night? Nope. As his caption suggests, he was just having his fascia scraped.

Pain is beauty.... #freethenipple #fasciascraping

A post shared by Armie Hammer (@armiehammer) on

First of all, what even is fascia? And why is Hammer scraping it? Fascia is your body's connective tissue that surrounds muscles and organs, which can sometimes tense up and lead to aches and pain. And while a method like foam-rolling can relieve muscle tension, a device like the definitely-not-FDA-approved Fascia Blaster — or whatever TF Hammer is using — can go a little deeper. But unlike foam-rolling, fascia scraping isn't relaxing at all. In fact, it can be pretty damn uncomfortable, with some users reporting major bruising.

We're not the only ones with some strong reactions to Hammer's Oscars prep: Plenty of other celebrities had something to say about it in the comments, too. "This looks painful AF," wrote Insecure star Jay Ellis. "But most importantly who is seeing your chest at the Oscars?" In true Hammer fashion, the CMBYN actor responded: "Depends how well I play my cards..."

And yet that's not even the best comment to Hammer's unorthodox routine — the real winner would be Watch What Happens Live host Andy Cohen, who wrote, "This legit is turning me on." Andy, our thoughts exactly.

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01 Mar 00:54

Foodie Guide to 2018 Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival at Disneyland Resort

by Alex Dunlap
Kristen

WE HAVE TO GO

Everyone’s favorite California foodie festival is back again this year at Disneyland Resort. This Friday through April 12, come out and enjoy the Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival! Celebrating the best of Californian cuisine, beverages and entertainment, this festival is sure to make you hungry, and you won’t want to miss all of the amazing dishes we’ve cooked up this year. Here’s your official Foodie Guide to everything available at this year’s festival. All of these Festival Marketplaces can be found throughout Disney California Adventure park.

Mimosa Flight at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival California Cheeses at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival
Nuts About Cheese

Food:

  • Brie Toast with Fig, Mint and Almond Crumble
  • Goat Cheese Fromage Blanc Tartine with Rosemary and Hazelnuts
  • Selection of 3 California Cheeses – Point Reyes Blue, Vella Jack and Fiscalini Cheddar

Beverages:

  • Pineapple Mimosa
  • Raspberry Mimosa
  • Strawberry Mimosa
  • Mimosa Flight
  • Duckhorn Vineyards, Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley
  • Baileyana, Grand Firepeak Cuvee, Chardonnay, Edna Valley
  • Chandon, Brut, California

Rotational Wines:

  • Patz & Hall, Chardonnay, Sonoma Coast
  • Hartford Court, Land’s Edge Vineyards, Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast
  • Schweiger Vineyards, Chardonnay, Spring Mountain District, Napa Valley
  • Firestone Vineyards, Gewürztraminer, Santa Ynez Valley
  • Tres Sabores, Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley
  • MACROSTIE Winery & Vineyards, Chardonnay, Sonoma Coast
  • MACROSTIE Winery & Vineyards, Wildcat Mountain, Chardonnay, Carneros
  • Sort this out Cellars, Mourvedre Rose Mermaid, Santa Barbara
  • CHOCK ROCK Vineyard, Syrah, Arroyo Seco
  • Hartford Family Winery, Hartford Court, Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley
  • Kita Wines, Camp 4 Vineyard, T’aya, Rhone White Blend, Santa Ynez Valley
Red Sangria at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival Mexican Chocolate Custard at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival
LAstyle

Food:

  • Korean BBQ Beef Short Rib Tacos
  • Chicken Teriyaki Slider with Spicy DOLE® Pineapple Jam
  • Mexican Chocolate Custard

Beverages:

  • LVP, Vanderpump, Red Sangria, Spain
  • Golden Road Brewing, Mango Cart, Wheat Ale
  • Mango Agua Fresca (non-alcoholic)

Tropical IPA Shandy at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

The Brewhouse

Beverages:

  • Backlot Michelada
  • Tropical IPA Shandy
  • Modelo Especial Lager
  • Refuge Brewery, Blood Orange Wit, Belgian Wheat Ale
  • ACE Craft Ciders, Apple Honey, Hard Cider
  • Smog City Brewing, Sabre-Toothed Squirrel, Hoppy Amber Ale
  • Ballast Point Brewing Company, Unfiltered Sculpin, IPA
  • Festival Punch
California Craft Brews

Food:

  • White Cheddar Lager Soup in a Mini Boudin’s Sourdough Boule

Beverages:

  • Beer Flight – Bright & Refreshing
  • Three Weavers Brewing Company, Seafarer
  • Mission Brewery, Hefeweizen
  • Bottle Logic Brewing, Kingdom Common, California Common
  • Black Market Brewing Co., Cherry Gose
  • Beer Flight – Bold & Hoppy
  • Stone Brewing, Scorpion Bowl, Tropical IPA
  • Hangar 24 Craft Brewing, Betty, American IPA
  • Aftershock Brewing Co., Red Alert, Red Ale
  • Anderson Valley Brewing Company, Barney Flats
  • Three Weavers Brewing Company, Seafarer, Kolsch
  • 21st Amendment Brewery, El Sully, Mexican Style Lager
  • Mission Brewery, Hefeweizen
  • Black Market Brewing Co., Cherry Gose
  • Bottle Logic Brewing, Kingdom Common, California Common
  • Aftershock Brewing Co., Red Alert, Red Ale
  • Stone Brewing, Scorpion Bowl, Tropical IPA
  • Hangar 24 Craft Brewing, Betty, American IPA
  • Karl Strauss Brewing Company, Boat Shoes, Hazy IPA
  • Anderson Valley Brewing Company, Barney Flats, Oatmeal Stout
Jalapeño Popper Mac & Cheese with Bacon at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival Verlasso™ Sustainable Salmon Peruvian Poke at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival
Peppers Cali-Ente

Food:

  • Jalapeño Popper Mac & Cheese with Bacon
  • Verlasso™ Sustainable Salmon Peruvian Poke with a Cucumber-Lime Salad and Aju Verde Salsa

Beverages:

  • Lime Margarita with Jalapeño Garnish
  • Watermelon Lemonade (non-alcoholic), with optional Habanero Sugar & Chili-Lime Half-Rim

White Wine Flight at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

Uncork California

Beverages:

  • White Wine Flight
  • Twomey, Sauvignon Blanc, Napa County, Sonoma County
  • Cambria Estate Vineyards & Winery, Benchmark, Chardonnay, Santa Maria Valley
  • Sofia, Rosé, Monterey County
  • Red Wine Flight
  • La Crema, Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley
  • Ferrari-Carano, Merlot, Sonoma County
  • Rodney Strong, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sonoma County
  • Sparkling Wine Tropical Float
  • Sofia Blanc de Blancs, Monterey County

Strawberry and Coconut Rice “Frushi” at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

Strawberry Frosé at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival Watsonville Strawberry Pie at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival
Strawberry Patch

Food:

  • Strawberry & Coconut Rice “Frushi” with Sweet Oikos® Greek Nonfat Yogurt Wasabi Sauce
  • Watsonville Strawberry Pie

Beverages:

  • Strawberry Frosé
  • Strawberry Pineapple Float with Strawberry Popping Pearls (non-alcoholic)

Kickback Michelada at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

Avocado Time

Food:

  • Avocado & Pepper Jack Petite Guacamole Burger
  • Spice Oumph!® on Pita with Avocado Hummus and Garlic Sauce
  • Avocado Ice Cream Bar

Beverages:

  • Kickback Michelada with Flavors of Pineapple and Lime
  • Black Market Brewing Co., Deception Coconut Lime, Blonde Ale

Grilled Asparagus Caesar Salad at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

Compressed Asian Cucumbers at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival Beet Kombucha Sangria at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival
Eat Your Greens

Food:

  • Grilled Asparagus Caesar Salad
  • Compressed Asian Cucumbers with Green Sauce, Toasted Almonds and Sea Beans

Beverages:

  • Lolea, No. 2 Sparkling Frizzante White Sangria, Spain
  • Beet Kombucha Sangria
  • Health-Ade Beet Kombucha with Wild Berry FOMZ (non-alcoholic)
Citrus-Brined Pork Roast at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival Crispy Orange Chicken & Rive at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival
Citrus Grove

Food:

  • Citrus-Brined Pork Roast with Tangy Barbecue Sauce and Lemon Pepper Slaw
  • Crispy Orange Chicken & Rice with Garlic Cracker
  • Meyer Lemon Macaron

Beverages:

  • Meyer Lemon Ginger Mule
  • White Blend, Conundrum, California
  • Fever Tree Ginger Beer

Bourbon Chocolate Whoopie Pie at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

I ❤ Artichokes

Food:

  • Grilled & Chilled Artichoke Hearts with Romesco
  • Fried Artichoke Carbonara
  • Bourbon Chocolate Whoopie Pie

Beverages:

  • Tio Pepe, Fino Sherry, Gonzalez Byass, Spain
  • Mumm Napa, Sparkling Wine, Brut Prestige, Napa Valley
Orange-Vanilla Cream Float at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival Salt & Beer Vinegar Parmesan Chicken Wings at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival
Cluck-a-Doodle-Moo

Food:

  • Grilled Harris Ranch Beef Tenderloin Slider with Chimichurri Sauce
  • Salt & Beer Vinegar Parmesan Chicken Wings
  • Oikos® Greek Nonfat Yogurt Panna Cotta with Red Raspberry Compote

Beverages:

  • Festival Beer Flight
  • Estrella Damm, Lager
  • Towne Park Brew Co., Pale Ale
  • Bootlegger’s Brewery, Thai Tea Far Out, West Coast IPA
  • Lost Coast Brewery, Downtown Brown, Brown Ale
  • Justin, Cabernet Sauvignon, Paso Robles
  • Orange-Vanilla Cream Float with Whipped Cream (non-alcoholic)
Popcorn Lemonade Cocktail at Disney California Food & Wine Festival Caramel Popcorn Crispy Treat at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

Shrimp Boil Tacos at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

Off the Cob

Food:

  • Sweet Corn Nuggets with Beef Chili
  • Shrimp Boil Tacos with Andouille Sausage and Fresh Corn
  • Caramel Popcorn Crispy Treat

Beverages:

  • Popcorn Lemonade Cocktail
  • Figueroa Mountain Brewing Co, Paradise Rd, Pilsner
  • Popcorn Lemonade with Whipped Cream and Candy Corn Garnish (non-alcoholic)

Black Garlic Soy-Braised Pork Belly Banh Mi at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

Garlic Kissed

Food:

  • Creamy Mac & Cheese with Garlic Bread Crumble
  • Black Garlic Soy-Braised Pork Belly Banh Mi

Beverages:

  • Bloody Mary with Garlic-Stuffed Olive
Festival Beer Garden

Beverages:

  • Beer Garden Flight
  • Legends Craft Brewery, American Lager
  • Modern Times Beer, Lomaland, Saison
  • Stereo Brewing Company, Tales of Brave Ulysses
  • Sierra Nevada, Tropical Torpedo, Tropical IPA
  • Legends Craft Brewery, American Lager
  • Saint Archer Brewing Co., Blonde Ale
  • Barley Forge Brewing Company, Nom Nom, Mango Hefeweizen
  • Modern Times Beer, Lomaland, Saison
  • Stereo Brewing Company, Tale of Brave Ulysses, Scottish Ale
  • Sierra Nevada, Tropical Torpedo, Tropical IPA
  • Noble Ale Works, Big Whig, IPA
  • Unsung Brewing Company, Naturia, Double IPA
  • Goose Island Beer Co., Matilda, Belgian-Style Pale Ale
  • Lindemans Brewery, Framboise, Raspberry Lambic

Vegetarian “Meatball” Sandwich at Paradise Garden Grill at Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

Paradise Garden Grill

Food:

  • Beer-Battered Cod with Steak Fries, Sweet Slaw and Spicy Remoulade
  • Vegetarian “Meatball” Sandwich with Marinara Sauce Topped with Melted Mozzarella Cheese and served with Kettle Chips
  • Beer-Braised Pork Tacos with Pickled Apple Slaw, Black Beans and Queso
  • Sausage Trio Platter with Braised Red Cabbage and Warm Potato Salad
  • Large Soft Pretzel with Beer-Mustard Dipping Sauce
  • Salted Caramel Budino with Vanilla Bean Chantilly Cream
  • Bienenstich Cake with Caramelized Almonds and filled with Vanilla Bean Custard

Beverages:

  • Brewery Ommegang, Hennepin, Farmhouse Saison
  • Innis & Gunn, Original, Barrel-Aged Scotch Ale
  • Zilliken Estate, Riesling, Mosel, Germany
27 Feb 01:49

Blind Items Revealed #2

by ent lawyer
Kristen

I'm sad to say the pics of him kissing her remind me of Vin Diesel anytime he has to kiss a woman on screen.

February 19, 2018

Quite a remarkable coincidence that this former A list athlete headed out of her sport had a camera right next to her to take photos with the guy she calls her boyfriend. Perfect position to take staged photos.

Danica Patrick/Aaron Rodgers
22 Feb 15:26

Frito Macaroons, 1947 – A Vintage Recipe Test

by RetroRuth
Kristen

I think this is something Bill would like for some reason. Not a diss.

I’ve already made cookies with potato chips on this blog, so this week I decided to make cookies with corn chips!

IMG_0686

These are Frito Macaroons!

Frito Macaroons
Author: Recipes For All Occasions, 1947
 
Ingredients
  • 2 Tablespoons shortening
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ⅔ cup coconut
  • ½ teaspoon baking powser
  • ¼ teaspoon salt (or less)
  • ¾ cup rolled or quick oats
  • 2 cups Fritos, crushed slightly
  • 2 eggs
Instructions
  1. Beat eggs well and mix with oatmeal. Let stand while creaming the sugar and shortening. Combine the two mixtures and add coconut, Fritos, baking powder and salt. Drop by spoonfuls (about a tablespoon or one standard cookie scoop), and pat together into a disk on baking sheet. Bake in a moderate oven (350 degrees) for 15 minutes.
3.5.3229

Frito Macaroons - Recipes and Menus For All Occassions, Fritos, 1947

This is from a 32-page pamphlet called Recipes and Menus For All Occasions published in 1947 and it is made up entirely of recipes that use Fritos in some way. From breakfast to dinner, this pamphlet has your Frito needs covered! Needless to say, I love it. It is mostly the inspiration behind “Chip Week” on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram this week, but I have also cooked out of this pamphlet before. And I plan to cook out of it again after this. Maybe even sometime soon.

IMG_0661

Besides the fact that these had Fritos in them, I was also excited because they have no flour in them and they use oatmeal!

Substitution Note: After I started making these, I realized I only had unsweetened coconut, so I ended up using that.

IMG_0664

The resulting mixture was very crumbly and dry. I had to smash them into a disk shape on the pan because pieces were just falling off all over.

Also, I didn’t know what the sticking situation would be, and it didn’t call for a greased baking sheet, so I broke out the ol’ Silpat. Just in case.

IMG_0671

IMG_0674

Done!

They peeled just fine off the Silpat, but I’m not sure how they would be on the bare, ungreased sheet. I would probably at least use parchment paper for these.

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One down the hatch…

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Two down the hatch…ish

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“I…I don’t know what I’m eating here.”

“Are they good? What do they taste like?”

“Corn? An oatmeal cookie? I have no idea.”

The Verdict: Mysterious

From The Tasting Notes –

These were very different and very interesting. After a few days (!) of discussing them, we came to the conclusion that they tasted like a cross between an oatmeal cookie and a piece of cornbread. What kept throwing us off was the fact that they had a very strange savory undertone to them. It wasn’t unpleasant, but it is not something that you expect when eating a dessert. It’s probably because I used unsweetened coconut in the recipe. If I had used sweetened coconut, they probably would have tasted more dessert-like and not as…corny? They tasted a lot like corn. Not like Fritos, just straight up corn. Anyway, all that aside, they were still good. They were also very unique, so if you think you’ve tried every cookie out there, you should make these.

15 Feb 21:49

Blind Items Revealed #2

by ent lawyer
February 7, 2018

Speaking of NYFW, this A+ list designer likes to pose for photos with his celebrity guests and he had some very choice things to say when he saw this one named singer and what she wore. He was not a fan. At all.

Halsey/Tom Ford
08 Feb 01:42

Food Writer Karen Palmer Now Slinging Baguette Pizzas in Silver Lake

by Farley Elliott
Kristen

This is Stoffer's french bread pizza and bagged salad. This is the first meal I could make myself when I was 7.

Osso chef Nick Montgomery is along for the ride too

A new round of pizza wars is heating up in Los Angeles, and the most unique entrant into the mix has to be Pain Pizza. The pop-up newcomer will land at Silver Lake’s We Have Noodles shop for one night only, on Sunday, February 11.

Pain Pizza is unique in several ways. First, it’s the brainchild of food writer Karen Palmer and chef Nick Montgomery. The former is a relatively recent New York City expat who got into a bit of an early kerfuffle over a one-starred LA Weekly guest review she doled out to Tintorera, while the latter is an NYC kitchen vet who opened up Downtown’s ill-fated Osso.

Even more interesting is the concept itself. Rather than, say, wood-fired pies from the likes of La Morra, Pain Pizza will debut their signature French bread pizzas. These are smaller, cheesier bites done up on a Bub and Grandma’s baguette — it’s like what a suburban kid might pop in the microwave growing up, offered at $5 apiece ($7 for the pepperoni) alongside a couple of salads and a tiramisu. Because the pop-up is happening at We Have Noodles, the team will also sell beer and wine.

Test run. #

A post shared by Pain Pizza LA (@painpizza) on

Add Pain Pizza to a growing list of lesser-seen pizza styles emerging around Los Angeles right now. There’s also Roy Choi’s mixed-message slices at Pot Cafe in Koreatown, deep dish at the newer Blackbird on Melrose, and today’s look at wide Roman slices from Highland Park’s Triple Beam Pizza. The Pain Pizza party starts at noon at We Have Noodles (3827 W. Sunset Blvd.), and goes until it’s all gone.

07 Feb 18:32

Hellmann’s Frosty Slaw Man Salad – A Vintage Christmas Recipe Test

by RetroRuth
Kristen

this looks grotesque

Back when I shared the fabulous Mt. Fuji gelatin, I told you about a second project I’d assigned to Carolyn and her scientist friends. And by “project”, I of course mean ridiculous gelatin. This Christmas week, snuggle up in your comfiest chair, grab yourself a warm (potentially boozy) drink, and follow along with:

CHRISTMAS

HORROR

THEATER!!!!! (Told and Illustrated Through Pictures By Carolyn)

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This is Frosty Slaw Man.

Mua-ha-ha-ha-ha!!!

On a warm fall night in September, Carolyn sent a text message to Ruth.

“So, my friends are coming for Hallowe’en again, if you want to make use of our skills.”

Ruth searched her recipe collection until, late one night, she happened upon Frosty. Frosty Slaw Man. She immediately sent him to Carolyn for testing.

Frosty Slaw Man

Carolyn pitched the idea.

“Come on, let’s ‘welcome a new man into our life’! It’ll be fun!”

If only they’d listened to Alana’s gut and stopped RIGHT THEN. But no. They had to press on.

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The instructions were as clear as mud. “Soften gelatin in cold water; stir over hot water till dissolved.”

“You think like a double-boiler?”

“Yeah, do that.”

And the horrors had begun.

“That….. does not look good.”

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They managed to liquefy the gelatin bits again and continued, mixing the ingredients “….into creamy drifts.”

“It’s JUST cabbage and cottage cheese?”

“Basically, yeah. With some salt or something.”

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The sound was something like when your foot gets stuck in the mud. “Sluuuurp. Slurrrrrp.” But they patted away and diligently forced the mixture into the molds. Suddenly, from behind, they heard a yell:

“WHO WOULD EAT THIS??!?!!?!?!??”

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They did not have an answer, so they took another drink of liquid courage and pressed on.

They hit a snag when Carolyn realized she didn’t have Hellmann’s mayonnaise.

“Crud. Whatever, let’s use this other stuff. It’ll be fine.”

Frosty Slaw Man

“But what if there’s some kind of proprietary mix for Hellmann’s that makes it bond properly with the gelatin? WHAT IF WE’RE TOTALLY SCREWING IT UP!!??!?!”

“Hmm. Don’t tell Ruth.”

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But they should have. THEY SHOULD HAVE.

Ruth came over the next day to survey the team’s work. She was somewhat pleased to learn that making her recipe had not driven them mad. However, upon unmolding Frosty’s base layer, they realized….something was wrong.

HI RUTH YOU SMELL

“Um…..guys?”

“Let’s work fast!!! Here, face bits ready to go.”

THIS IS THE OTHER ONE

“Move that bottom!”

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“Now, the head! Oh gosh, the head….”

Copy of IMG_3149 “Just do it! Go! GO!”

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And done!

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“Hey, he looks kinda cute! I’d let him be ‘my steady’ for sure. Wait….. what’s happening? Oh no.”

Frosty, the terrifying Slaw Man, was no more. The gelatin mixture was NOT enough to hold him together for longer than 5 minutes.

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All that remained was to “Taste him” and see if the heart of not-Hellmann’s was any good.

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“This is not anything special. It just tastes like cottage cheese and cabbage.”

Ruth’s Verdict: Ho-Hum

Despite the hilarious presentation and major gelatin fail, this ended up being kind of a dud. It really didn’t taste that funky, or even like anything, really. I mean, I suppose their goal was to let the mayo really take the show. So it does, and if you like mayo mixed with cabbage and cottage cheese as a side than this is your jam, my friend. I’m not being sarcastic. This wasn’t bad at all, it was totally edible but it just was plain. If you want a real side, I totally would make this out of potato salad.

In terms of the “melting”, I am pretty sure that modern cottage cheese is not as creamy as it used to be. Or maybe cottage cheese in Michigan is drier than in most states. Either way, I have run into this problem before with gelatin and cottage cheese together (here and here), and if your “salad” isn’t soupy enough, the darn thing is just not going to set at all. I remember pouring a great deal of liquid into my potato salad mold, basically making into potato soup and thinking that it was a huge mistake, but it actually ended up setting perfectly. What this guy needs is about 2 cups of extra liquid so that he can hold his shape. But I don’t know if I want to make Carolyn and crew do this again. They may rebel.

07 Feb 03:39

Blind Items Revealed #2

by ent lawyer
Kristen

Note to self: get Maisie Williams drunk

January 31, 2018

Still not able to drink in this country, this foreign born A- list mostly television actress who is an Emmy winner/nominee should probably try not to get drunk and speak in front of people who will leak what she has to say. I feel for her.

Maisie Williams
06 Feb 00:20

Marshmallow Chill, 1955 – A Mid-Century Recipe Test

by RetroRuth
Kristen

celery!

This week we are trying to figure out if the addition of lime gelatin will make marshmallows and celery taste good together.

IMG_0623 This is Marshmallow Chill!

Marshmallow Chill
Author: Knudsen Recipes For Greater Food Value, 1955
 
Ingredients
  • 1 4 oz pkg lime gelatin
  • 10 marshmallows
  • ¾ cup cottage cheese
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 2 stalks celery, minced
Instructions
  1. Dissolve gelatin in hot water as directed. Melt marshmallows in the microwave or in a double boiler. Add melted gelatin to hot water and beat until smooth. Stir in cottage cheese and celery. Fold in sour cream and pour into gelatin mold. Chill.
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Marshmallow Chill - From Knudsen Recipes For Greater Food Value

This recipe is from Knudsen Recipes For Greater Food Value (eBay link, affiliate) which is a lovely book that helpfully suggests ways to add cups of sour cream and cottage cheese to every dish. Seriously though, most of the recipes in the book are dairy-based and a lot of them are really interesting.

Like adding celery to marshmallow gelatin, for example.

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Alex was very excited to make the gelatin. I think it was mostly because she wanted to eat the extra marshmallows.

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Melted marshmallows all stirred in!

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Sigh. It’s…celery.

I probably could have cut the celery a bit smaller. That’s not really a mince. Not that it’s going to make any difference.

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At least it gave me a good excuse to use one of my favorite gelatin molds. And Alex got a lesson in unmolding a gelatin, which probably will be completely useless information for her, but you never know.

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Perfect!

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“This tastes familiar.”

“Like cottage cheese?”

“Like I’m pretty sure we’ve made this before. And it tastes just as blah as it did before.”

The Verdict: Blah

From The Tasting Notes –

This tasted like lime gelatin with cottage cheese in it. It was edible, but not our favorite. When you got a bite with celery in it, it was slightly less edible. But the celery sort of floated to the top, so you could mostly eat around it. The marshmallows really didn’t affect the flavor. Overall, I didn’t feel bad about feeding this to Tom or TJ (who ate half of it before I had to cut him off). I did feel bad for Alex, who had helped me so well and been so excited. She took a bite and her little face just fell. She hated it, but was too polite to come out and say it. The closest she got was patting my arm and saying, “It’s okay that you made the wrong recipe, Mommy. Next time you will pick a better one.” I guess the moral of the story is that it’s toddler food (or, at least, TJ food), but I really feel like they missed the boat on this one. Maybe instead they should have done a Waldorf salad type mold and used apple instead of cottage cheese. Maybe then they wouldn’t have made my little girl sad.

03 Feb 05:36

Mt. Fuji King Crab Salad, 1950 – A Vintage Gelatin Recipe Test

by RetroRuth
Kristen

Oh good god, why?

I have a rather serious unveiling this week. A serious gelatin mold unveiling. This is how emotionally invested in this I really am.

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With great seriousness, I present: Mt. Fuji King Crab Salad.

Mt Fuji Gelatin Mold

3.0 from 2 reviews
Mt. Fuji King Crab Salad
Author: "Mealtime Magic" with Fancy Japanese King Crab Meat, 1950
 
Ingredients
  • 21 ounces of crabmeat (we used fake krab)
  • 2 packages lime flavor gelatin dessert
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 Tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons onion juice (cut an onion in half, run the flat of your knife over the cut side to get "juice")
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 cups sour cream
  • 1 cup finely chopped, drained unpeeled cucumber
  • Few drops green food coloring (optional)
  • 3 ounces cream cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons cream
  • Chicory, watercress or parsley
Instructions
  1. Flake crab or krab, saving sections for garnish.
  2. Dissolve lime gelatin and salt in boiling water. Stir until dissolved. Add vinegar, onion juice, Worchestershire sauce. Chill slightly until thickened.
  3. Fold in sour cream. Blend well. Fold in cucumber and crab (or krab).
  4. Add enough green coloring to give a medium green ton to the mixture.
  5. For mold, use lightly oiled 6-cup capacity funnel, available in hardware stores. Plug hole at base with foil, pour in a little gelatin and chill to keep remaining gelatin from leaking out. Stand filled funnel upright in large measuring cup. Chill until firm.
  6. Unmold, mash cream cheese, stirring in cream. Beat until soft and fluffy. Frost top of mountain to look like snow. Garnish around the mold with greens and remaining crab chunks.
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Mt Fuji Gelatin Mold II

Can you believe this thing? I can’t. I saw this cookbook and just about lost my mind. Talk about upping your gelatin game.

“I’m bringing an Under The Sea Salad mold to the party on Friday night, Judy. What are you bringing?”

“Mt. Fuji reproduced in crab-sour cream gelatin.”

Now that is a mid-century mike drop.

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Anyway, I was lucky enough to discover this little wonder right before Halloween, which was fortunate because my friend Carolyn was having her annual get together with her friends, and they needed another insane craft project to reproduce while drinking. They were the ones responsible for last year’s epic Aquarium Gelatin, so I thought this (and another insane gelatin project that will be revealed at Christmas) would be perfect for them.

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As they did last year, they leapt at the chance to play with gelatin on a grand scale. A mountainous grand scale. And they did it with a lot of alcohol and only the minimum loud complaining about how bad the gelatin mixture smelled.

Also, in a move I did not disagree with, they decided to use fake krab rather than real crab. And then proceeded to tediously shred it into little pieces. I was told this took forever.

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Look at that gentle whisking.

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And that bowl of…gelatin.

That is funky.

I was told at this point that the smell was intense and very, very bad. They also did not add additional food coloring. That is just…the normal color. Fun.

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So, another byproduct of having scientists do projects and drink is that they start getting too involved in minutia. It was decided that since Mt. Fuji was big, the gelatin mold should also be big. It was also decided that the funnel I had procured was too small for a big mountain like Mt. Fuji. Also, there was too much potential for gelatin loss if they couldn’t get the seal at the neck end of the funnel just right.

The decision was made to make it in a large bowl instead of the funnel.

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I was a little sad, because I wanted to make the gelatin in the funnel, but I understood their decision. But now we had the issue of the top to deal with.

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We went with some fancy cream cheese sculpting over a piece of cucumber that we then covered with more cream cheese. I think the look came together pretty well.

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Careful. Careful.

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And, a cross-section in case you were interested. It actually set up very well! And it was pretty. At least to me.

Now, we just had to release it where it would do the most damage.

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“This is bad.”

“I know, you could tell by the smell. Is it the fake crab?”

“No, that’s actually the best part. The chunky bits make it taste better. It’s just so sweet.”

The Verdict: Yuck

From The Tasting Notes –

Of course, this was way too sweet. I mean, the basis is dessert gelatin, so of course it was. The fake crab actually helped tie the flavor together into something that you could actually eat. The whole thing ended up tasting a bit like a really sweet tartar sauce with fake crab bits floating in it. So, not gag-inducing, but who wants to eat gelatinized tartar sauce? Not me. Not even Tom. But Carolyn and her friends had a great time making it, and it ended up being a pretty easy gelatin and the finished product was pretty in a…green sort of way. This would be a fun one if you were having a dinner party where you wanted to simultaneously impress and horrify your guests so that they didn’t invite themselves over again. Like Thanksgiving.

And, here is a little bonus for you. Carolyn and I tasting it in her kitchen. We didn’t love it.

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01 Feb 22:34

Blind Item #9 - Which Athlete?

by ent lawyer
Kristen

There's a lot of Bonds love in here that is a bit over-the-top. I don't remember Bonds being considered the Michael Jordan of baseball. Anyway, my guesses are Wayne Gretzky or Michael Jordan.

 There is an athlete out there who is a PERFECT comparison to Bonds. And this person IS in their respective HOF. (Not baseball) For most, I would say the “name” is as big if not bigger than Bonds in both sports and, I guess, pop culture.

Like Bonds, this athlete set records which will more then likely never be broken. Like Bonds, this athlete was better than their competitors (the best on the planet) by a VERY significant margin. Like Bonds, this athlete was widely speculated to be using PED’s on absurd levels yet never failed a drug test and always maintained their innocence. Unlike Bonds, this athlete is considered a groundbreaking athlete. This athlete is revered and loved. And, as I said, in their respective HOF.

Haven’t read any articles on the comparisons which are interesting and so similar. This athlete did this in our lifetime and on the biggest stage in the world. Who is it? (Note: not an obscure sport. One of the biggest sports on planet earth. “Real” sport, not pro wrestling. This sport is represented in the Olympic Games and has been for a very, very long time).
30 Jan 21:44

Soup Cakes,1959 – A Mid-Century Recipe Test

by RetroRuth
Kristen

I found my new favorite food blog.

So, I’ve been threatening to do this for a few years now, but I finally went ahead and did it yesterday.

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I made Soup Cakes!

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This recipe is from a 1959 Aunt Jemima pamphlet entitled Pancakes Unlimited. We used this a few years ago to make some pancakes with chocolate milk, so I know they aren’t completely off their rocker. Based on that, I thought this recipe might deserve a legit try.

Now, before we go all crazy with this, I just have to clarify one thing. I DID NOT use pancake mix with this. I might have broken all kinds of rules by doing that, but I had Bisquick on hand, and so that is what I used. I’m not sure how much using pancake mix would change this, but by all means feel free to give it a try.

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I had originally planned on making an actual soup recipe for this week, but Alex was very cutely insistent that she wanted to make the recipe this week, so I had to do some shuffling and come up with something that she could make. After reading a comment on the Facebook page that someone was excited to see me make these, the light bulb went on and it was decided.

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Plus, it was a weeknight and I needed an easy recipe. And nothing is easier than mixing soup with baking mix. And I was really curious about these. After all, the chicken soup cornbread had been a complete disaster, so I was really curious to test this one out to see if it would be better or worse.

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“Reeeeeeeeeally.”

“Yup, these are fine. Actually, I think they might be good.”

The Verdict: Actually Good

Despite how crazy these are when you look at the photo, when you get down to it they taste pretty good. I’m not sure how these would be if you used cream of mushroom soup, but the cream of chicken soup version ends up tasting like creamy chicken with dumplings. Or like chicken and biscuits. It doesn’t really taste like chicken and waffles to me because the pancakes weren’t really sweet. It was pretty much savory all the way. Which I was totally happy with. The pancakes themselves were on the custard-y side rather than being fluffy and cakey. It was a good texture and reminded me more of quiche than of a pancake. Two side notes on this one: 1. My kids loved these. TJ ate two whole pancakes by himself and was sad when we ran out and he had to just eat vegetables. Alex was also sad when we ran out and I had to promise to make them again this weekend. 2. I made some cranberry orange relish to go with these as suggested in the recipe and it was nasty together. They kind of flew too close to the sun with that suggestion. If you make these pancakes, just eat them with the extra soup “gravy” and don’t bother with the cranberry relish.

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Yum!

29 Jan 18:13

Blind Items Revealed #5

by ent lawyer
Kristen

lol jake gyllenhaal thinks superman of all the DC superheroes right now is the easiest to replace? yeah okay.

December 15, 2017

This foreign born superhero is sweating bullets that two of his exes are going to spill what they know about his sex life. He needs the superhero gig. He should also be worried about this A- list mostly movie actor from an acting family who wants to be a superhero and is talking smack about him behind the scenes because the A- lister thinks the superhero is the easiest to replace.

Henry Cavill/Jake Gyllenhaal
26 Jan 20:46

Blind Item #8 - The Video

by ent lawyer
Kristen

My guess is Gavin Newsom.

I doubt even if I gave you a million clues you would be able to get the name of this model. She is from California and has several hundred thousand Instagram followers. She also has a sex tape with one of the leading candidates for Governor in California. Apparently she has more than one sex tape. She is big on Snapchat and is always recording everything. Some of those recordings are sex with this candidate. The recordings are from various hotels and also one in a changing room in a mall. You can hear the store closing announcement while this candidate is on his knees in front of her and umm, yeah. It is quite the look for him and would probably make an interesting campaign ad. For her entire collection she is asking $10M. 
26 Jan 02:00

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Residents Celebrate #RockTheDots

by Jennifer Fickley-Baker
Kristen

cheetah autoshare

This week on the Disney Parks Blog we’ve been celebrating all-things Rock The Dots in honor of Minnie Mouse and National Polka Dot Day, which happens to be Monday, January 22.

But Minnie Mouse isn’t the only member of the Disney family who “rocks” dots – several residents of Disney’s Animal Kingdom rock “dots” and other naturally beautiful patterns 365 days a year! We recently stopped by the park to see what our giraffe, African painted dogs, cheetah and more think about National Polka Dot Day.

To learn how you can celebrate National Polka Dot Day at Disney Springs and Disney’s Hollywood Studios on Sunday, January 21, check out our previous blog posts.

26 Jan 01:54

Ballast Point and More Exciting Changes Coming to Downtown Disney District at the Disneyland Resort in 2018

by Michael Ramirez
Kristen

They are finally putting in more bars outside the park to draw traffic away and I'm very pleased.

The Downtown Disney District at the Disneyland Resort is continuing its ambitious, promenade-wide transformation in 2018. Multiple new venues and significant refurbishments to marquee dining and retail locations, including the World of Disney store, will be completed throughout the year while Downtown Disney District remains open to guests. The result will be a fresh, one-of-a-kind Disney experience, immersing guests by day and night in the greatest mix of family-friendly dining, shopping and entertainment.

Ballast Point

Wildly popular San Diego-based brewer Ballast Point will open its first Orange County location in Downtown Disney District later this year. Ballast Point pairs its high-quality, award-winning beers with an extensive menu of Southern California cuisine—salads, small plates, flatbreads and entrees featuring local, sustainable and seasonal ingredients. The space will house the first-ever on-site brewery, tasting room, kitchen and outdoor beer garden at Downtown Disney District. Construction is scheduled to begin soon, across from Catal Restaurant and Uva Bar.

Recently opened in Downtown Disney District is the multi-sensory experience Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire by ILMxLAB and The VOID. The hyper-reality experience transports guests deep into the Star Wars universe, allowing them to walk freely and untethered throughout the space.

Other exciting experiences slated to open in 2018 include:

  • World of Disney will be reimagined into a new, dynamic and distinctly Disney retail environment. The flagship store will remain open to guests for shopping during the majority of the refurbishment, with work expected to be completed in phases throughout 2018.
  • Splitsville Luxury Lanes will offer a unique combination of dining, drinks, bowling and entertainment. Opening on January 29.
  • Disney Home will offer fans a variety of Disney-themed home goods. Opening in February 2018.
  • Naples Ristorante e Pizzeria will undergo renovations to expand its outside patio with a new outside bar. Inside, three wood burning ovens will be installed to better meet guests’ demands for authentic Napoletana-style pizza pies. The restaurant will remain open throughout construction, which is slated to be completed in fall 2018.
  • Black Tap Craft Burgers & Beer will serve its award-winning burgers and signature CrazyShake™ milkshakes in a casual atmosphere. Opening later this year.

Don’t forget to visit other locations at Downtown Disney District, including The LEGO Store, Curl Surf, Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen, Sephora, Sprinkles, PANDORA Jewelry, The Dream Boutique and more!

There are even more great updates coming in 2018, so please stay tuned. What are you looking forward to most at Downtown Disney District?

24 Jan 01:51

MacArthur Park’s glory days

by Hadley Meares
Kristen

I always find these articles interesting.

It reigned for a half-century as a grand setting for outdoor concerts and boat rides

If you had asked Angelenos in the first half of the 20th century what the name “Westlake Park” meant to them, there is little doubt you would have received glowing responses. The 35-acre recreation area, now known as MacArthur Park, was said to be a place where “palms whisper in this island of quiet in the midst of roaring city traffic.”


It was “the most popular open-air resort in the city” and “the most beautiful.” According to the Westlake Weekly, by 1910 around half-a-million people visited every year. Westlake, the neighborhood that had grown around the park, was an “exclusive, high-class residence district,” lined with New York style apartment houses, Queen Anne-style mansions, and cultural institutions like the Otis Art Institute.

 Los Angeles Public Library photo collection
A cactus garden in the 1890s—an early attempt to beautify swampland.

Not so long before, the acreage had been a rural, stinking marshland with an alkali lake, used primarily as a dump for residents in the nearby heart of Los Angeles. Near the western boundary of the small city, the area was an eyesore and a wasteland.

It was transformed, when, according to historian Nathan Masters, prominent leaders in the community who owned land around the lake sought to make the hilly expanse a tony suburb of LA.

Led by Mayor William Workman, one of the landowners, a campaign to turn the lake area into a park was launched. In 1886, the boosters were successful, and Westlake was “forever dedicated to the use of the public as such park and reservoir.”

Freshwater was pumped into the lake, trees were planted, and promenades were installed in the manner of grand parks on the East Coast and in Europe.

 USC Digital Library
Benches lined walkways that circled the lake’s boundaries.

The park was officially opened over Thanksgiving weekend in 1890. It quickly had the desired effect on property values in the nascent neighborhood, which was soon the home of grand Angelenos, including Harrison Gray Otis and Ida Hancock.

Over its first 40 years, Westlake Park went through a series of graceful iterations. A buggy trail on a portion of the lake was planted with palms and renamed the posh sounding “Palm Drive.”

Color-enhanced postcards from the Los Angeles Public Library photo collection show the boathouse (top left), bandshell (top right), lovely flowers and walking paths (bottom left), and a horse and buggy (bottom right).

Over its first 40 years, Westlake Park went through a series of graceful iterations. A buggy trail on a portion of the lake was planted with palms and renamed the posh sounding “Palm Drive.”

Westlake was an exclusive neighborhood, but the park was easily accessible to all Angelenos via streetcars that stopped right at the park.

 Los Angeles Public Library photo collection
A boathouse at the lake.

A series of bandshells sheltered free outdoor concerts and dances. There were also boathouses. The most elaborate had a “mansion-style staircase,” which “flowed all the way down to water level,” giving visitors access to the lake. Boating was a popular pastime, with sailboats, canoes, and rowboats all available for rent.

 Los Angeles Public Library photo collection
A dippy boat.

In 1914, the Los Angeles Times described an idyllic summer night at the park: “Westlake seemed to have taken upon itself a subdued festival attire last evening. Miller’s Military Band was playing to a large audience scattered around the edge of the lake. Numerous boats were lazily moving on the surface of the water, the red lanterns at the stern of each canoe casting long and dancing crimson shadows.”

By the 1920s, many of the rapidly expanding city’s richest residents were moving west to build their mansions, but the park remained popular.

In 1932, the Herald-Express held its annual model yacht race at the park, filling the lake with more than 3,000 miniature boats. In many ways, this picture-perfect event was the last hurrah of the Westlake Park of old.

Since the late 1920s, the city had been debating how to fix the fatal flaw in Wilshire Boulevard, builder and booster Gaylord Wilshire’s grand thoroughfare from Downtown to Santa Monica. The park lay in the direct path of the boulevard, causing a detour that city leaders said impeded traffic and stunted development.

“Construction of an automobile thoroughfare at Westlake Park,” the LA Times editorialized in 1931, “is the sole remaining project facing authorities before Wilshire Blvd. becomes a complete wide artery leading from the business section to the sea.”

Several plans were drawn up, including a picturesque ornamental bridge and a daring underwater tunnel. But in 1932, it became clear that the city was set to choose cheapest option, a “land-fill” road, which would bisect the lake and park with a “river of concrete” at an estimated cost of $93,000.

 Los Angeles Public Library photo collection
1931 bridge proposal of Wilshire Boulevard extension.

Residents and business owners in the grand old Westlake neighborhood were outraged. Not only would their park and neighborhood be bisected by a major road, the construction would majorly disrupt the ecosystem of the park.

The lake would be drained and massive amounts of earth moved.

In March 1932, the Wilshire Community Council filed a protest with the city against the dirt road. The next month, 800 concerned citizens met at the Royal Palms Hotel under the auspices of the Westlake District City of Commerce and the Wilshire Community Council to urge city leaders to oppose the plan.

Westlake activists continued to fight the plan stating it was “the most expensive, obnoxious method” proposed and that it would annihilate “the beautiful tropical scene” of the park.

On October 4, 300 residents crowded into a meeting of the public works committee in a desperate attempt to save their beloved park. According to the LA Times:

Speakers protested against any construction in the park, but were adamant against the dirt fill proposition. Arguments voiced by the speakers were that it will mean the destruction of a great deal of park area, that it is an unnecessary improvement, that due to the topography of the region the dirt fill roadway will bring traffic hazards and that the cost of the project will be a drain on the public purse.

Community leaders even took their case to court, claiming that the original land grant for the park did the not allow for such a major project. The Los Angeles Superior Court agreed with the plaintiffs, and the project was stalled. However, the ruling was overturned by the California State Supreme Court in 1934.

“Although local community leaders were able to delay the beginning of construction by citing the original 1886 ordinance’s noncommercial clause, the city council ultimately approved the low-cost alternative,” Jose A. Gardea, author of MacArthur Park (Images of America), explains.

The digging began in earnest in 1934. The lake was drained, statues were moved, and hundreds of wildlife were displaced.

 Los Angeles Public Library photo collection
1938 view of Westlake Park, bisected by Wilshire Boulevard.

When the Wilshire extension was finally opened by Mayor Frank Shaw in December, city and business leaders celebrated. More than 3,000 people crowded to watch cars traverse the new road, which now was indeed an expansive avenue from “the city to the sea.”

For many Westlake Park lovers, the new bisected park was an entirely different beast. As Gardea notes, the park was now becoming more and more a “drive-through” park instead of a “destination park.”

The Wilshire extension added big city flavor to the once quiet park- along with some big city problems. The tunnels which connected the park’s two halves created unsafe areas that drew crime and unseemly assignations. Fumes from cars made the air sooty and unhealthy.

In wasn’t long before the name Westlake Park itself was threatened. According to Gardea, in 1942, William Randolph Hearst suggested changing the name of the park to honor World War Two hero General Douglas MacArthur, who Hearst wanted to make a viable presidential nominee.

Once again, the city brass was enthusiastic and approved of the change, and once again Westlake Park lovers and neighborhood residents were appalled. City Hall and local papers were sent dozens of letters in protest, written by people who saw the old Los Angeles they loved rapidly slipping away. One letter from a man named Edwin L. Quinn to the LA Times read:

With due regard for all patriotic considerations, it is with the deepest sorrow that I learn of the passing of the name of Westlake Park. After frequent visits to those recreation environs, extending over a period of 46 years, Central Park [renamed Pershing Square in honor of John J. Pershing in 1918] and Westlake Park will always remain just that to me. Individuals and heroes may come, and individuals and heroes may go, but parks go on forever. It does seem that fitting tribute to our great might be expressed without destroying names which have become traditional.

He was joined by other irate people, some of whom had stronger arguments than others. “The old name is so embedded in the history and traditions of the city that it deserves to be retained permanently,” a man named J.F. Lilly wrote.

 Los Angeles Public Library photo collection
Unveiling of General MacArthur statue.

“Moreover, it has a distinctive meaning, in that it is toward the west part of the city and is a really beautiful lake... Let’s allow our pioneer names to stand, unless they are inappropriate!”

A concerned Westlake resident name Bo Gilkey blamed the name change decision on “political aspirations along with hasty judgment and hero worship.”

Westlake businessman Arthur Day was more pragmatic: “I feel that we should at least wait until after the war.”

Again, the city gave lip service to the protestors, inviting them to voice their concerns. But, in the end, the name change was approved. In June 1942, Westlake Park was officially rechristened MacArthur Park. A new era had begun, and the name that had meant so much to so many passed into obscurity.

19 Jan 11:24

Watch This Wonderfully Retro Video of Cake Decorating

by Valerio Farris
Kristen

This video is so satisfying to watch.

Before the Brits were wowing us with their televised competition style bakes, one baker across the pond was tackling a technical challenge all his own. Meet Jack Bryant, the subject of this deliciously vintage video from 1959.

British Pathé is a veritable goldmine for content from the past. The company produced newsreels and documentaries for a better part of the 20th century and are responsible for gifting us with gems such as this video from inside a globe making factory. In 2009, their entire archive was made publicly available on YouTube.

It was here that I stumbled upon this video of Mr. Bryant, cake decorating extraordinaire. Working out of a bakery in Reading, Bryant, clad in a lab coat, hunches over delicately creamed cakes, pastry bag in hand. A narrator, whose voice feels like a caricature of what a narrator’s voice in the 50s should sound like, details the valiant act of “icing cakes in the grand manner,” as Bryant emblazons a small cake with a surprisingly realistic rendering of a kangaroo. In a moment of inspired dedication, he even climbs on top of scaffolding to work on a giant cake from above, like a reversed Michelangelo with sugar in place of paint. While his cake skills may pale in comparison to the creations of today’s master cake makers, his precision and devotion to small swipes and pipes of icing are enchanting.

I'm particularly wowed by his perfect penmanship—all while hovering, suspended, above a cake the size a small bed: He pipes out the words 60th Anniversary on the dessert's surface and leans back to admire his handiwork. I can't imagine he isn't pleased with what he sees.

Are you a fan of baking videos? Link us to some of your favorites in the comments section.

19 Jan 01:36

Blind Items Revealed #5

by ent lawyer
Kristen

I can't remember who said it first on twitter but Jenny Slate truly is our nation's Greatest Heterosexual.

December 27, 2017

This A list superhero has been hiding his secret sex life and possible pregnant one night stand. Apparently this B+ list actress found out all about it. She is a bit of a talker so the next thing you know, the superhero starts dating her again.

Chris Evans/Jenny Slate
17 Jan 01:30

Blind Items Revealed #3

by ent lawyer
Kristen

lol colin jost thinks he's dating scarlet johansson.

September 18, 2017

Emmy Awards

This late night actor looks kind of foolish when he is talking about love and how much he cares for the actress he thinks is his girlfriend at the same time she is having room service in a hotel with another guy she is seeing.

Colin Jost/Scarlet Johansson
16 Jan 23:42

Blind Item #3

by ent lawyer
Kristen

oh aaron, what are you thinking boo disappointed

This closeted NFL player and his "girlfriends" never confirm he is dating anyone whether male or female but his new thirsty contracted "girlfriend" wants everyone to know they are dating. She smells new sponsorship money.
12 Jan 21:39

Blind Items Revealed #32

by ent lawyer
Kristen

Bill - was this the one you were talking about?

December 27, 2017

This A list mostly movie actor from an acting family should have been a Golden Globe nominee for best actor. He should be a shoo in for an Oscar nomination. The thing is though, he has an A+ list mostly movie actor/producer doing everything in his power to talk smack about the actor behind the scenes. This A+ list actor lost out to roles to the A lister back in the day and thinks the A list actor had something to do with it. Nope. The A+ list actor is just a crap actor and was not the first choice. Part of the issue apparently also deals with an A+ list mostly movie actress who the A+ list actor once pursued for years. She rebuffed him but not the A list actor. Fast forward to the present and the A+ lister is in a position of power. He was also upset that his movie about a subject close in proximity to the movie at question with the A lister got the short shrift because the A lister's acting and movie was better. So, what to do? Try to convince as many people as possible not to nominate the A list actor for anything.

Jake Gyllenhaal (Stronger)/Mark Wahlberg(Patriot's Day)/Reese Witherspoon/