[syndicated profile] gfshoestring_feed

Posted by Nicole

Gluten Free Stuffed Soft Pretzel Bites—with chocolate dipping sauce!

You know how sometimes you slave over a hot stove and oven for hours, and your family just kind of, well, shrugs when you place your masterpiece in front of them? Well sometimes I’m just simply not willing to risk such a lukewarm reception so I need a homerun. That’s when I break out recipes like Garlic Pizza Bread Sticks—and/or these stuffed gluten free soft pretzel bites. They’re sweet and salty, chewy and just a little bit crisp. In other words, they’re perfect.

Gluten Free Stuffed Soft Pretzel Bites—with chocolate dipping sauce!

I filled some with Nutella, others with peanut butter, and still others with a mix of the two. I’ll be honest: I preferred the bites stuffed with just peanut butter. But wait! I have good reason.

Step by Step Gluten Free Stuffed Soft Pretzel Bites—with chocolate dipping sauce!

Nutella hazelnut spread (yes! it’s gluten free) is unlike any other nut butter, as it’s quite a bit thinner. As such, it really does tend to run. And since I tried filling these bites every which way and found that the best way is by filling a whole cylinder at once, and then slicing the cylinder into bites, there will be some filling that peeks out the side of each bite. And when that filling is Nutella, it is more likely to escape from the sides of each bite during baking. The other potential way to fill the bites is to pipe tiny little mounds of filling onto a baking sheet like this, freeze them, and then wrap a small piece of dough around each mound. But then you end up with round pieces of dough, and personally I just don’t like the look. Pretzel bites should have squared edges. They rise better, and bake up more beautiful—just like you expect pretzel bites to look.

Gluten Free Stuffed Soft Pretzel Bites—with chocolate dipping sauce!

Serve them with hot fudge sauce, or just melt some chocolate for dipping. They’re a sure thing. And sometimes, that’s just what you need. Wouldn’t these be perfect for Black Friday? Family baking project day!

The post Stuffed Gluten Free Soft Pretzel Bites appeared first on Gluten-Free on a Shoestring.

Monday linkspam

24 Nov 2014 07:11 am
jae: (Default)
[personal profile] jae
English links:

Elizier Yudkowsky on writing realistic viewpoints. The process of creating and becoming a character isn’t just the invention of a personality. It’s the extrapolation of the universe that is that character’s mental world - not what they ‘believe’, but the surrounding universe that this viewpoint will appear to live in.

From the Guardian's Comment Is Free section, an argument that today's feminism has gotten very good at publicly humiliating individuals, but is no better than it's ever been at tackling the root causes of inequality.

Speaking of the Guardian, they're now changing their internal spelling rules to incorporate non-UK spellings of words that are in the names of entities (so World Trade Center, not World Trade Centre, as they've always spelled it). I am not a style guide person, but I agree with this change.

A cogent argument that one of the things that ails prestige television is the "evil genius" trope: "It's Time to Bring Back the Banality of Evil.

Since her mostly-well-received Vanity Fair interview, Monica Lewinsky seems to have decided that the best use of her notoriety is speaking out against cyberbullying. Here's her first public speech (it's really very good).

The Jian Ghomeshi (Canada) and Bill Cosby (U.S.) assault allegations have entered public consciousness at around the same time, and both primarily concern really old cases. Yet Ghomeshi will face charges while Cosby will not. Here's why.

The Jibo robot: further evidence that we live in the future, or just a lot of hype?

German links:

Remember the Soviet-and-later-Russian illegals couple who had been posing as Austrians in Germany for 20+ years? It seems the Russians have bought the woman's freedom for an undisclosed sum of money, and she is now back there. (The man is still in a German prison.)

A German professor who feels like neither a woman nor a man is asking to be referred to using gender-neutral language. (This probably sounds less-than-notable to monolingual English speakers, but the German language makes this very difficult.)

supergee's laws of stupidity

24 Nov 2014 08:52 am
supergee: (horn)
[personal profile] supergee
1. A corporation will do things too stupid for a person to do.

2. A government will do things too stupid for a corporation to do.

3. The bigger a corporation gets, the more it resembles a government.
[syndicated profile] loweringthebar_feed

Posted by Kevin

One major aspect of the reasons for dismissal, which involved a finding that the applicant performed the "chicken dance" as an intentional act to intimidate, harass or otherwise harm another employee, was simply fanciful and did not represent a valid reason for dismissal.

Commissioner Ian Cambridge

Cambridge ruled that the applicant, described as an "alpha male" with a "somewhat disagreeable demeanour" and a history of insulting other employees, should have been given a "final warning" rather than being terminated on the apparent pretext of intimidation by chicken dance.

"Even unpleasant people are entitled to justice," he wrote.

[syndicated profile] racialicious_feed

Posted by Arturo

Just over two years after the first fight to save sacred Native land in South Dakota, a new fundraising drive seeks to complete the drive to keep Pe’Sla — “the Heart of everything” — in indigenous hands.

The campaign, organized by the Indian Land Tenure Foundation, seeks to raise $500,000 by Nov. 30 for the purposes of buying the last 438 acres of Pe’Sla land under outside ownership. The foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is working with the Oceti Sakowin Nations for the fundraiser, and this video is a quick introduction to its mission:

In 2012, the Oceti Sakowin Nations, working together with the foundation and Last Real Indians, successfully raised enough money to purchase more than 1,900 acres of Pe’Sla land after they were put up for auction.

From the current fundraiser’s Indiegogo page:

If this purchase falls through, the opportunity to save these sacred lands could be lost forever.

The Black Hills, including the sacred site of Pe’ Sla, were reserved for the exclusive use and occupation by the Oceti Sakowin (Great Sioux Nation) by the Fort Laramie Treaty of 1868 with the U.S. government. But once gold was found in the Black Hills (by an illegal expedition into these sacred Native American lands) the U.S. illegally seized the lands despite the treaty agreement.

The U.S. government has yet to give these lands back to the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota nations. Even though the gold is gone, they still hold great natural, cultural and spiritual value to us. Now, we have no choice, but to buy our sacred lands at Pe’ Sla back from the current occupants. There’s no time for further contesting the illegal taking of these lands. We need to raise the money by November 30, 2014 or Pe’ Sla may be lost forever to Indian people.

Donations can be made at the link above, or the embed below.

The post New Fundraising Campaign Seeks To Preserve Sacred Land Of Pe’ Sla appeared first on Racialicious - the intersection of race and pop culture.

legionseagle: (Default)
[personal profile] legionseagle
...thanks once again to my pokings around [profile] tumblr_refuge on Livejournal and a question from [personal profile] shezan I found myself reminded of the existence of TJLC with respect to BBC Sherlock. "TJLC", for those previously unaware, stands for "The Johnlock Conspiracy" and is based on the premise that ultimately John and Sherlock will be shown in an overtly sexual/romantic relationship on the show and that Moffat and Gatiss and the whole show team (Arwel Wyn Jones is a key figure in the whole business) have been laying a bread-crumb trail showing their workings all along, for those who have eyes to see.

To which I can only say, Stig Has Been Dead For Ages, Honestly.

However, leaving aside the demerits of the vast bulk of so-called evidence for TJLC*, there is one point which strikes me forcibly about the key point that its proponents make, and that is this:

"If John and Sherlock were a man and a woman as opposed to two men, the way shots involving them are framed and lit would unequivocally be interpreted as indicating an overt romantic storyline between them."

Yup. Agreed 100%. No two ways about it.

However, that's not the knockdown, drag-out blow the conspiracy theorists think it is.

The trouble is, that practically every scene between a man and a woman on screen, however framed and lit, is interpreted as indicating an overt romantic storyline. That's because in general audiences are bad at parsing relationships between men and women on-screen otherwise than in romantic terms. Furthermore, if showrunners want to do something different with male/female relationships on-screen, there's a great gaping hole in the cinematic vocabulary they can use to express it, and if they try to adapt the current vocabulary to address something different then it gets seen as doing Romance wrong, not doing Not-Romance and succeeding or failing on its own terms.

Take, by way of example, Molly Hooper. Molly Hooper is framed and defined by her unrequited crush on Sherlock, almost every time she's discussed. As a result, her story-line is seen as being a story of her failure, since she fails in her romantic objective and, as this is seen as the one true legitimate plot in which a woman can engage, she's seen as an overall failure. By contrast, John Watson's succession of increasingly inept relationship crash-and-burns are not seen as an indication that as a character he's to be written off; they're just side-lights on his wider characterisation**.

But looking at Molly Hooper, she's so much more than a woman who has an unrequited crush on a man and makes a bit of a twerp of herself by being obvious about it. That's just her romantic plot. She is, in no particular order:

- a woman in a tough professional role who does it extremely well, despite the idiocy of everyone around her.
- the woman who gets over her crush and actually becomes a critical yet supportive friend of the crushee
- the woman who is the first person to extract an on-screen sincere apology out of Sherlock.
- the woman who both sees and observes ("I know what it means, when someone only looks sad when no-one is watching them.")
- the woman who assists Sherlock to fake his own death under the very noses of Moriarty and a minimum of three trained assassins.
- the woman who gives Sherlock a well-deserved slap for being a plonker and orders him to apologise for the trouble he's causing to others.

Oh, and did I mention, "the woman who dumped Moriarty and survived"?

But all of that is too much to incorporate within the narrow confines of what a woman is allowed to be in TV drama. In order to analyse Molly Hooper that way people would have to appreciate that a female character is allowed to be so much more than a love interest even when interacting with a man.

And, at bottom, that's what I dislike about TJLC. It's not that it wouldn't be nice to have a drama series with a central, acknowledged, same sex relationship that's not what the whole storyline is about. But the drive towards the single story interpretation in male/male relationships, given that I want to be driving away from it in male/female relationships sets my teeth on edge. It's turning a "may" into a "must" when we've barely got used to a "may" and might want to look at ways in which one could do that "may" differently, without being tied down by baggage.

The whole of literature (particularly romantic literature in the old sense of romance) is chock-full of ambiguous relationships between men (take, just off the top of my head, the three musketeers plus D'Artagnan; Raffles and Bunny; Rassendyll, Sapt, von Tarlenheim and Rupert of Hentzau; Sir Percy and the whole rest of the League; Mike and Psimth; Richard Hannay and well, practically everyone he ever crosses swords with, actually --***). While I'm prepared to declare that some of them are doing their best to express as far as they can relationships which couldn't have been expressed overtly at the time they were written, they aren't all doing that. It would be a terrible shame to lose the complex range of relationships we've got and cram male friendships and antagonisms into the limited range of "trophy, loser, motivation (dead)" which female characters get stuck with.

To quote another woman who fits uneasily into "proper" notions of what she's allowed to be on screen, "I am big. It's the pictures that got small."

And that, ultimately, is my problem with TJLC. It's an example of dreaming small.

*Though to any evidence which depends on "As a gay man, Mark Gatiss would never write..." I have two words to say, those two words being "Lucifer Box." Anyone who is capable of perpetrating Lucifer Box is capable of anything.
** Or, of course, evidence that Sherlock-and-John is end-game.
*** Why is it always Hannay who gets dragged into ambiguous sexual relationships with his antagonists? You'd think it would be much more up Sandy's alley, and yet the only time Sandy gets dragged into an ambiguous sexual relationship with an antagonist, she's Hilda von Einem.
nineveh_uk: Illustration that looks like Harriet Vane (Harriet)
[personal profile] nineveh_uk
I have never seen the film Reign of Fire, long may such a state of affairs continue, but I remember Jonathan Ross’s summary of it as “The London Underground with dragons” (which is what it is), and subsequent riff on the theme that adding the phrase “with dragons” can make almost anything sound cooler. This is largely correct. The only things not made better by imagining them with dragons are those that already have dragons, which are largely dreadful unless they are, or are inspired by, Anglo-Saxon poetry.

Then there’s that other phrase, the one reached for by directors who want to be cool in a more ‘gritty’ way. About a month ago, I went Kidlington Amateur Opera Society’s production of The Merry Widow** (which did not involve dragons).* Humming the tunes, I naturally then turned to YouTube to see if there were any complete versions on it, which there are. I clicked on one that looked as if it was not made in the era of orange hair, and did the “move the cursor forward a random amount to see what it is like” thing. I was slightly surprised to discover when “what it was like” was a bloke on stage looking surprisingly like David Mitchell*** in the “Are we the baddies?” sketch.

Yes, someone has made The Merry Widow with Nazis.

It had to happen eventually. There’s Lehar, Hitler’s favourite composer. A libretto that contains rather a lot of cynical references to the Fatherland. Opera’s general liking for dramatic costumes and a bit of updating. It’s still kind of bizarre. The Merry Widow is not darkly political stuff. It’s fluff. Glorious fluff, but basically fluff. Who looks at it and thinks it needs political realism of any sort, let alone updating to occupied Paris c. 1944?

Actually, I can see exactly how it happened:

Company member 1: What shall we do next? Our finances are looking a bit rough, so let’s make sure we get a good audience. Something popular with the old folk, small cast, good tunes. Not too complicated scenery.

Company member 2: How about Die Lustige Witwe.

Other company members: Groan! Too staid! Too conventional! Too Viennese!

Company member 2: No, wait! We can make it exciting. You know how the characters are always going on about the Fatherland?

Other company members: Ye-es?

Company member 2: We set it in the Third Reich! Think of Danilo’s first aria. What if he’s a disenchanted SS officer, the black uniforms will look great on stage. Zeta’s a French collaborator. Hanna’s a film star, like that woman in Unsere Mütter, unsere Väter. Oh! And Rossillon can be in the Resistance and Valencienne a secret sympathiser****. It can’t fail!

Other company members: I suppose we could give it a go…

In the event it worked pretty well, though as it was in German and my copy of the libretto omits some of the dialogue, I wasn’t always able to identify where changes had been made to the text (or I could identify a change, but not exactly what it meant). It’s certainly an awful lot better than the hideous San Francisco Opera production I saw on a library DVD, which was so arch you, could drive a chariot through it. Some of the interest for me lay in the choices made by a German company in terms of representing Nazi characters and insignia on stage. So the uniforms have the SS rune and the death’s head cap badge, but the swastikas are modified, and the salute is done with the arm position as usual, but the fingers open as in a Vulcan salute. But not being a German viewer I don’t have the nuances of why particular choices are made (I know there are legal issues, but I get the impression that these are also not straightforward in all contexts). I expect my next dose of The Merry Widow, a Metropolitan Opera cinema broadcast, to be rather different.

To finish on a random note, when I went to The Girl of the Golden West with [personal profile] antisoppist last month, I remarked that it had got me thinking about what replies various opera characters would get from agony aunts. It strikes me now that Danilo would be the perfect match for Captain Awkward, since he actually does need the message “Use your words”.

*It was surprisingly good. I hadn’t gone with high expectations for the singing, because I’m not an idiot, and so it was adequate. What greatly exceeded my expectations was that they had a director who could direct and a musical director who whipped a 24 piece orchestra on apace and in tune, as a result of which it went at a good clip, played the comedy well, and was thoroughly entertaining.

**Not that I would be surprised by TMW with dragons, given opera production concepts.

***He really does. It is quite hard to watch light opera when all the way through you are thinking that the male lead looks like a slightly thinner version of a British comedian.

****Valencienne actually offers the singer and director a surprising amount of space for characterisation choice. Opera North implied she was a former grisette who really did want to keep to her side of the marriage deal out of loyalty.
wallwalker: Painting of an orange sun setting behind hills, a tree and a flock of birds. (orange sunset)
[personal profile] wallwalker
I'm not working as much as I used to - school and all that - but no one escapes Black Friday.

Read more... )


24 Nov 2014 05:24 am
dglenn: Me in kilt and poofy shirt, facing away, playing acoustic guitar behind head (Default)
[personal profile] dglenn

From "A nun's secret ministry brings hope to the transgender community" by Nathan Schneider, 2014-03-02, Al Jazeera America:

Bishops have confronted her outright. In their offices and on their stationery she has endured lectures about everything from doctrine to identity politics from men who insist that "homosexual" is the only acceptable word to use for lesbians and gays. They have warned each other about her. At times she has had to let them believe she's doing "just" lesbian and gay ministry, which at least they have some concept of. Her superiors have required her to pass up chances to write articles or be quoted by reporters because they're afraid of what the hierarchy would do if she went public.

But her trans community doesn't necessarily demand more of her. They mostly tell her to protect herself, to do what she must to make sure she'll be able to keep on being available to them. "One of the things that makes her even more significant," Mateo Williamson says, "is that she has faced persecution just for reaching out to people like me." Yet, for her, that's not enough. In the inability to speak out, she feels traces of the dysphoria, the deep incongruence, that trans people feel about their assigned gender. It's not just a frustration or annoyance; it's a kind of death.


And this eats at her. "I am silent while trans people are being killed," she says, clenching her shoulders as if holding an invisible weight. "They're being murdered and committing suicide, and I'm silent!" When she's worked up like this Monica can flash a gaze that makes her eyes seem steely and certain, until they fill with tears. And then a saying from St. Catherine of Siena comes to mind, turning her anger to a duller sadness. She recites it: "Preach the truth as if you had a million voices -- it is silence that kills the world."

[personal profile] treonb posting in [community profile] theamericans
 Just a reminder that this week we'll be rewatching Season 2 episodes 2 & 3: "Cardinal" and "The Walk In".

If you're going to be taking part in the group rewatch, you should make sure to get your hands on the episodes and watch them sometime over the course of this week. Then, on Friday, November 28th, one of the community hosts will make a discussion post, and we can all talk about the things that we noticed this time around.

Mockingjay I (Film Review)

24 Nov 2014 11:09 am
selenak: (Katniss by Monanotlisa)
[personal profile] selenak
Spoiler-free version, for anyone curious whether or not the decision to split the final volume of the trilogy in two would come across as "we want to milk this cash cow a bit longer" or would be justified by the end result, it's definitely the later. There is no "post" in Katniss' PTSD, so I'd rather describe her as shell shocked (come to think of it, Katniss really has a lot in common with the WWI soldiers for whom the term was coined, more below cut), and since this film doesn't have to cover as many events as the previous ones, it has the necessary breathing room to convey this - great performance by Jennifer Lawrence, too - and to show the effect Current Events are having on everyone else, too, again, more below the cut. Also, what I hoped for re: the movie using the liberty of not being stuck to the first person pov the books are a bit more was indeed the case. If Mockingjay had been filmed as one single movie, all of this - Katniss' state, Panem's state, the fleshing out by scenes where Katniss isn't present instead of, as in the book, having her learn the result of those via reports - would have gotten short shrift, and we'd have been the poorer for it. Now, on to spoilery reflections.

The revolution will be televised )

personal update in point form

24 Nov 2014 03:37 am
maevele: (singingfrank)
[personal profile] maevele
1: still living in someone's basement.
2: haven't killed myself, but three+ close calls in six weeks means I need to fix my head.
3: best friend is about to be legit homeless, can't fix.
4: need to fix sleep issues because 6 hours every two days for a week, followed by 14 hours is not how we do
5: need to fix food issues, because of similar.
6: need to fix life, because fucked.

still alive though, and the parts that are good are amazing.
marina: (direction...?)
[personal profile] marina
1. Yesterday one of my coworkers celebrated her birthday, and as she does every year, she brought metric fucktons of food. I'm talking at least 5 big pots + two vegetable crates of food, for about 10 people. I ate so much I didn't eat anything else for the rest of the day. There were several types of kubbeh (including kubbeh matfuniya), mafroum, homemade couscous, chicken with olives, roasted eggplant with homemade tahini, of course, and just... so much delicious food.

2. In related news, I am trying to get back into cooking. I basically stopped cooking since I lost my apartment in September. First there was the madness of the 3 weeks before my trip, moving out, packing, dealing with everything, then I was abroad for nearly a month, then I came back and have been staying with [personal profile] roga where I... keep feeling unable to cook, for reasons that are silly and I need to get over. The primary thing is that I feel like this is temporary, it's just a place I'm staying in for a little while, so there's no point investing in getting to know the stove, buying supplies for adventurous new stuff I want to try, buying spices and sauces. This is silly because no matter how long it takes me to find a place, whether it's a day or a week or whatever, it's been long enough that I need to start cooking again, and supplies don't cost that much.

The other thing is that, of course, I don't feel comfortable cooking in someone else's space, especially when I'm there temporarily, especially when that someone isn't hugely into cooking, especially when the food I'd be making, due to differences in taste and things like my lactose intolerance, would not be something the other person would likely eat. It just feels... rude and indulgent somehow. But the point where it's winter and I can't cook soup because of the aforementioned reasons, is the point at which I feel like I need to get over it and make it work somehow.

So, I am getting back into cooking, by which I mean slowly expanding my very basic skills. Current challenge: some kind of soup with rice noodles. I don't like tomatoes, can't use dairy and meat is way too much work at this stage, so finding recipes has been a challenge! Currently leaning towards buying a bunch of mushrooms and seeing where that gets me. The main problem here is that I've never made soup and I don't want to use stock (for like a billion irrational reasons) and can't make my own (because that would basically mean making soup to begin with) so either I manage to fight through this or it defeats me and I have to re-examine my views on stock. WISH ME LUCK, GUYS. So far I treat all cooking like salad making, so it's basically like chop up a bunch of stuff, throw it in a container, wait for it to be ready. This does not always work when heat is involved! So, we shall see.

(I think, seeing it all laid out like this, that my biggest unconscious fear has been a completely failed cooking experiment. It's one thing to fail utterly in your own kitchen, but to fail utterly in someone else's, with the dirty dishes and the time you're taking up and the end result being unusable... somehow that just feels wrong. And you can't really try new cooking things unless you're willing to fail miserably, so.)

3. I AM PROBABLY GOING TO AMSTERDAM IN APRIL. No plane tickets yet, so. But if you are in Amsterdam or know a fangirl who is - let us meet up! I'll be traveling with IRL geeky friends, but I'm sure I'll have time for lunch/dinner/whatever with internet people.

4. I continue to be an utter failure as a human being. No apartment, no master's degree, no plans for the future (see previous), no progress on original writing. \\\\o//// HURRAY.

The biggest thing right now that I know I need to dig myself out of is the grad school thing. I'm done with all my classes, either I submit to the PTB and forego a thesis and just do a few more classes next semester, or I press on and do a thesis (which is what I want). To do the latter I need to find an adviser, to find an adviser I need to (1) research all the professors at my faculty + adjacent faculties (after the rejection from the head of my program AHAHAHA I am basically terrified of this the way cats are terrified of water) (2) conduct original research into my proposed area of study to see what other research is already out there (basically, what if anything has been written on the connection between pornography and fan fiction). THIS I am putting off because it's shit tons of work and it makes me nervous and so I ~never have time~.

So, I guess I can say I've made progress because I at least know what I need to do? IDK if I'm setting the bar that low for myself yet? Basically miserable failure of a human being. Bonus: this has become so stressful that it's disrupting my sleep schedule and impacting my self esteem. FUN TIMES.

5. I suppose the one thing I am not currently 100% failing is yuletide. And by that I mean that I actually have an idea for a story! All thanks to [personal profile] roga, without whom I'd still be ripping my hair out. If I can get over my general anxiety of I am a failure in all things long enough to spend an hour or so writing, I might even bang out something like a first draft.


kaigou: this is what I do, darling (Default)
锴 angry fishtrap 狗

to remember

"When you make the finding yourself— even if you're the last person on Earth to see the light— you'll never forget it." —Carl Sagan

November 2014

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