Catching up with cats and culinary catastrophes

January 9th

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Don’t fear the Reaper, Maggie. (I was actually watching a movie at a the time, and in one scene a dog was barking stridently. This was Maggie’s reaction.)

January 10th

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June froze in this position for a good minute or so. Is the merely stretching? Did she sense something from beyond? Are these the games cats play with their owners and then laugh about when we’re gone? We may never know.

January 12th

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Yesterday I made chole masala, which is a Punjabi dish featuring chickpeas in a spicy sauce with onions, tomatoes, garlic, ginger, and a crap ton of spices. Good for a day in the double digits below zero (windchill). I lacked a few of the spices but was happy to discover that I was not so deficient as I thought; thanks to the informative and prestigious internet, I found I could make my own garam masala, which as I finally learned is actually a mixture of a few different spices, most of which I had on hand. This is what that mixture looked like beforehand. (The dish itself wasn’t stunningly pretty, but it was surprisingly good as far as my recent efforts at Indian cooking have gone.)

January 13th

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Today’s bread-making adventure was less successful, but as I told my friend, if nothing else the apartment will smell nice for a while. Indeed, it did, and while I had a hard time prying the bread out of the loaf pan — the bottom crust never came out, as a matter of fact — I did quite enjoy the warm slices I ate. I also finally cracked open the homemade grape jam my boss’s wife made, too (with grapes they grew, extra special), and this is a picture of that. In the future I shall go easier on the flour, for I think that was the issue with this bread, which I found very tough to work.

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