27 April 2017

horse chestnut

The walk continues into Queen's park:




It's definitely more interesting looking at trees now that I've taken FOR421.

26 April 2017

sakura

A walk I've been meaning to take for years coincides with the chase for sakura on campus:







Roberts was quite disappointing, perhaps I've already missed the peak since half the branches were bare. Luckily, while walking down the Philosopher's Walk (was also kinda disappointing, this is what happens when you wait years to do something, bring me back to Kyoto please) I spotted a lone tree in front of the law building. It has more blossoms, is situated next to a nicer looking building, and no one else was around to admire it.

Part 2 of the walk tomorrow.

24 April 2017

press

Some time ago, I was chatting with someone who expressed surprise that I never made grilled cheese before. While that's all I remember of the conversation, today's the day that is no longer true!

white bread / cheddar / pecorino romano / kimchi

Motivation:
  1. I'd be really sad if my bread went bad so I'm trying to eat it for all 3 meals
  2. I was trying to use my 126g knob of butter down to 115g so I can make some scones. This might take a couple more days.

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23 April 2017

white sandwich loaf

Today was a perfect day to try my hands at baking bread. Perfect in the sense that my room temperature was exactly the recommended temperature for the dough, which eliminated a big variable and made my life so much easier. I followed abreaducation, one of the resources recommended over at /r/Breadit (I chuckled at the name). Very unfortunate that abreaducation doesn't seem to have any more lessons beyond the whole wheat sandwich loaf, the lessons are very detailed and easy to follow. Also sad that Canada has no easy access to King Author flour, which is go-to brand I see everywhere.

For my first loaf, I followed the lesson pretty much word for word. My time / temperature log in case anyone wants to compare:

Step
Temp (F)
Time
Fold 1 81 1:15 PM
Fold 2 80 1:20 PM
Fold 3 79 1:25 PM
End of bulk 80 2:17 PM
End of pre-shape 76 2:57 PM
Start of baking 79 4:21 PM
End of baking 205 5:01 PM

My folds in general were fairly ugly, as in quite squarish and not very round. I guess this will only get better with more practice. Pre-shaping was alright, slightly difficult to do on a bamboo chopping board (ahem this is definitely not an excuse to buy a marble slab, oh wait my parents already did! I'd also very much appreciate having a plastic and metal bench scrapper).

Before and after baking:



I was overly scared of over proofing my bread, but I think the final density implies that I should've let it proof for maybe 5 to 10 minutes more? I'll have a better idea tomorrow once I'm slicing a completely cooled loaf, got my jagged edges since I was impatient :(



Butter'd up and spread with some cardamon raspberry (chia) jam:


Next steps are to practice this some more and find a longer fermented bread so I don't use an obscene amount of yeast. My jar says to use within 6 month, and I finally see how that's achievable by baking like this.

22 April 2017

jinggu



Two days earlier, I had no motivation to study for my last final. Instead I caught up on Magician (didn't expect that ending to the ancient creature arc), took more photos of tea utensils, and listened to this song nonstop.


21 April 2017

ponzu


Hambagu steak to celebrate end of exams, recipe via JOC. The hambagu itself is really simple to make, but it took basically all morning to grocery shop and assemble the other components. The cast iron was put to good use searing. The carrot flowers didn't work out so well, next time I'll be super keen and make clovers from green peppers.

20 April 2017

w

The best way I can explain this photo is how I feel looking at it is how I imagine Takemodo feels when he was staring at his empty fridge. But it's been a long time since I've watched that episode so I could be completely wrong.


Undergrad is done huh.

19 April 2017

oreo

I rather take photos of a teacup than study for my ENV final.



18 April 2017

loafers

Its quite sunny today so my living room is deceptively warm, which makes me crave summer clothing. Browsing through my pintrest, these 3 images epitomize summer.

Also looking for a unicorn skirt:

  • In between black and navy, aka looks practically black under all lighting expect its actually navy under the full sun
  • More structure than a skater skirt but less structured than actual pleated skirts
  • Holds its shape and wrinkle resistant like wool but flows beautifully in the wind / in motion like a light cotton / silk. 
Wish I can put this spec out for tender...oh wait that's what bespoke is. 

16 April 2017

champagne

Today's food notes:


I've been making this focaccia for a long time but recently switched to using bread flour and woah it ruined a lot of things. The dough is super wet when using the same ratio of flour to water as all-purpose flour. After two stubborn attempts of not changing anything, I've resigned to reducing the water until I can shape the dough into anything but the current blob shape. So far 200ml is still too much.
Reminder to self to renew library card and borrow The Breadbaker's Apprentice (and others on my long long list of cookbooks to read)

...

Living in Toronto with a dislike for out of season fruits forces myself to eat only apples and oranges (technically not in season, but for some reason I associate oranges and tangerines with winter months) for more than half a year. So to bribe myself to study for finals, I splurged on some nice grapes:



Most bites are average good, but damn some bites are so fragranced *u* reminds me of the first time that I smelled a peach that I bought at the Piedmont Park farmer's market. But more literally it taste similar to a logan.
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15 April 2017

capstone

"It’s not an exaggeration to say that capstone is the defining feature of fourth year."
starts my reflection for the course.

Some numbers in ascending order:
1.28 GB of files
4 design components
5 people's sweat, tears, loud voices (was always yelled at in the computer lab)
many cat photos and profanities
161 pages (only 68 pages of body, but 20 pages of reference...)

I guess I'm done undergrad minus 2 finals.

10 April 2017

bees

I think it is safe to say that spring has arrived in Toronto?

Small celebration with some chia seed "caramelized" blueberry jam (read: it got slightly burnt but that's a feature and not a bug):
I'm a bit of a jam snob and its so nice to make your own in about 2 minutes of active effort.

and a photo of my double monks inb4 I scratch the cap (and featuring tapered wool pants aka it's nice to not wear skin tight bottoms):
I'm sort of happy to bare ankles again, but sort of sad that I won't have the chance to wear my fun socks.
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05 April 2017

wear your paper heart on your sleeve

^ I forget if this was my previous favourite line of lyrics

My favourite description of myself, paraphrased from Jeff: "sometimes witty, always cynical yet warm and fuzzy at the same time"

Relevant song:

01 April 2017

a picture of the feelings

Knock on wood, but I think I am decently productive this weekend! Was not as miserable as I imagined it would be... but some sanity maintenance music just in case:




...

Also not sure what I was thinking the first two times I drank the 2013 bu lang from YS but it has great aftertaste! Definitely ordering a couple cakes of this. I did look through my stash again and the abundance of tea (and lack of income for the foreseeable future) is preventing me from buying more tea.