Saturday, 29 December 2012

Weekend Cooking: Cake Pops Fail?

Everybody is into Cake Pops these days. And as my friend is a passionate baker I presented her with a Monster Pops baking dish for Christmas. Yesterday I invited her over to tackle the pops which we bother never did before.

Here is a picture of the Monster Pops thingy. 

We also wanted to try our luck with the 'real' pops shaped like a ball dipped in chocolate and maybe sprinkles for decoration.

But I guess the dough was too wet (maybe we added too much frosting?) as the pops, once on a stick, dipped in chocolate either fell off the sticks or broke. Disappointed I put my share in the fridge and labeled this baking experience as time consuming fail.

The outcome. Top a pop, bottom monster and pops.

Today as I opened the fridge I spied the baked goods and glaring at them shoved one in my mouth. Well, what shall I say, the taste is just fine. They may not be presentable but they are delicious!

Weekend Cooking is a meme hosted at Beth Fish Reads and is open to anyone who has food related posts to share.

Thursday, 27 December 2012

2013 TBR Pile Challenge

I totally sucked at this challenge in 2012. I read a total of four books out of twelve and reviewed only three of those read. Nonetheless I'll take part again. On the one hand I like to generate the lists necessary for challenges on the other hand I really have a huge tbr pile. It's almost toppling over. And a new year is best to be started with some commitments. Here is one.

My committed list fellow book hoarders:

1. Freedom by Jonathan Franzen (2010)
2. The History of Love by Nicole Krauss (2005)
3. Rules of Civility by Amor Towles (2011)
4. Brooklyn by Colm Toibin (2009)
5. The Secret History by Donna Tartt (1992)
6. I know why the Caged Bird sings by Maya Angelou (1969)
7. The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood (1985)
8. Remarkable Creatures by Tracy Chevalier (2010)
9. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe (1958)
10. Blindness by José Saramago (1995)
11. The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver (2009)
12. The Tiger's Wife by Téa Obreht (2011)

My two alternates:
I The Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood (2009)
II The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood (2000)

This challenge is hosted by Adam and you can sign up here.

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Thoughts: The Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Desai

Well, why not make it short?
Usually I enjoy books set in India but I couldn't really enjoy this book.

BECAUSE although there is a bunch of characters each carrying a story, for me, I couldn't care enough about them to mind their fates.
Only I cannot get rid of the feeling that I should have cared about them. There is the retired grumpy old judge, Jemubhai Patel, who studied in a Victorian England, groomed by the Raj, all of which made him rise above his humble roots, to become a sour, lonely man. Then there is Sai, his orphaned grand daughter, exiled by the convent to be home schooled by the delightful Bengali sisters Noni and Lola. Sai is about to discover the first pangs of love, with her Nepalese tutor Gyan. And there is Biju, the cook's son, who is an illegal immigrant in New York, trying hard to make a better life, learning the hard way that a handful of American dollars is not worth as much in one country as in the other.

All of Desai's characters carry some kind of 'colonial baggage', like the judge who likes to deny his roots by eating his Naan (Indian bread) with fork and knife.

And still I cannot decide whether the writing style pretends to be exquisite and ethnic or really is exquisite and ethnic, all like the characters who should be lovable but are not quite as much.

Nonetheless I think the perspective Desai tries to share is worth having read the book. Because I would never know what it is like to live in a country with a post-colonial trauma or about immigrating and carrying the baggage to a foreign country with all hopes of the people I left on me. All that I can do is to read about it.

Monday, 17 December 2012

Where I have been ... reading.

I am back! I have been in a reading slump and meanwhile I was working my ass off to earn money for my trip to South East Asia. This trip took place in November and the first half of December. And now I have found my way out of the reading slump, too.

It might have happened on a slow boat on the Mekong in Laos or maybe on the coast of Cambodia, winding  down at the beach. Or at a pool side in Thailand.

Wherever. I was reading and I am still reading. So eventually I will start posting reviews again.