And a bit of a change of pace!

Holy cats, it was hilarious. Kristen Wiig is funny, Melissa McCarthy steals the show, and I honestly haven’t laughed this hard at a movie in a loooooong time.

See it now!

Summer blockbuster tally = 1-1-0


Viewer, I married him.

There are so many adaptations of Jane Eyre that I don’t really know what to say about this one. Everyone does a good job – Mia’s Jane is sufficiently clever and downtrodden and self-righteous; Michael’s Mr. Rochester is sufficiently tormented and wild and appealing; Jamie’s St. John is sufficiently tool-y; and Judi Dench is brilliant as always.

I think Liz was a little unconvinced, having recently seen the BBC miniseries, but I quite liked it.

(I’m not counting this as part of my summer blockbuster tally because this was meant to have been out in March, but took this long to arrive here.)

My last yum for a while, I’m afraid…

After a doctor’s appointment where my self-esteem took an unprecedented hit, I…am on a diet.

But I made this before that fateful Monday, so here’s one last hurrah of food for a little bit from me. It’s a Blueberry Buttermilk Sorbet with a White Chocolate Mud Cake.

It’s very nice and both are superbly simple to make (though the sorbet is complicated a bit if you have an itty-bitty ice cream maker like I do)!

So I guess I’m off to search for low-cal recipes now – wish me luck!

Just like Sonic!

Or so I hope – I’ve never been to Sonic, but I know they do cherry limeades there and I hope these Cherry Limeade Macaroons approach their inspiration.

They’re certainly tasty – I brought them in to work to share and one of my coworkers described himself as being on Cloud 9 after eating one – but I think I would make them smaller next time and refrigerate the filling before spooning it into the cooked macaroons so I could hopefully get a bit more of the lime-cream cheese filling in each cookie to balance out the chewiness of the coconut.


I don’t much care for bugs, but I will make an exception…

…for this grasshopper tart!

I thought this was really nice – not too sweet and light and refreshing, despite being a dessert that involves both chocolate and heavy cream. It went over very well at work – Liz said she would not be averse to my making this again in the future, something I’ll take into consideration when planning future grocery lists. 😉

One quick thing, though – I decided to take a page out of the original poster’s book and make my own cookies for the crust (rather than buying Oreos and scraping out the filling), using this recipe from Smitten Kitchen. As I was just beginning to mix things up with my carob powder, an ominous wave of deja vu suddenly swept over me. It was THIS recipe (from Martha Stewart originally)!

When I was faced with such a crumbly “dough,” I decided to just mash it all together and bake it one giant piece instead of trying to get cookie-shaped cookies. Alas, the rolled-out dough was too big for my cookie sheet and, when I persisted, there was with my stove a great puff of smoke which required me to suddenly open all the windows and stand in front of my smoke detector, waving a kitchen towel in front of it for a bit.

It turned out all right, but next time I’m buying the damn Oreos.

Jim Henson’s Fantasic World is fantastic, indeed!

A few weekends ago, Heather, Liz, Alicia, and I went to Peoria to see Jim Henson’s Fantastic World at the Lakeview Museum.

It was really interesting to get a look at Jim Henson’s background and see the progression from his beginning in commercials (which featured many Muppet ancestors) to the Muppets to Sesame Street to Fraggle Rock and the more experimental movies (Labyrinth and Dark Crystal).

They had some Muppets there (notably Rowlf, a Kermit, and Bert and Ernie), but most of the visuals were his sketches and storyboards for characters and commercials and a lot of his early work in graphic design and some of his experimental works in film that didn’t necessarily feature puppetry.

It’s amazing to get these glimpses into such an amazing mind – one which was not only so creative, but also so ambitious and determined that the world would see his ideas (he wrote many proposals and scripts that never went anywhere before he finally pitched The Muppet Show).

And I really, really want to know why puppets and the Muppets in particular are so endearing and enduring.  Why are we so eager to forget about the people that we know are there, that we know are moving their mouths and their arms, and accept the Muppets as creatures? Their eyes don’t move, their mouths only open and close, and their faces have very limited ranges of visible emotion and yet, somehow, he was able to create characters that have souls and personalities! WHY?!?!?!

The exhibition itself (and this may have been a limitation of the space it was occupying) was somewhat difficult to follow – the flow wasn’t quite clear. As you can see above, I’m a bit confused about the timeline of his creations and am trying to be a bit vague about it all because the flow of the exhibit, which was sectioned into his life, early work, Muppets, Sesame Street, his non-puppet films and interests, the Fraggles, and the films, was not easy to follow. I mean, we saw everything, but it wasn’t very clear which section followed which.

I think this exhibit is on tour from the Smithsonian and has been since 2007, so I’m not sure how much longer it has to go, but if it comes near you, I’d really recommend going to see it.

What an amazing guy.

Don’t have time for pizza?

Well, to be honest, then you don’t have time for Garlic Knots. But they’re worth the time if you’ve got it!

Once again, I ended up creating quite a bit of smoke – I knew it when I was putting them in the oven. ‘How’s this going to work?’ I thought, but I didn’t do anything about it. And ended up in front of my smoke detector again. It’s the topping of garlic, cilantro, and other spices that you paint on top of it that caused the smoke – maybe cover it with foil?

The high temperature results in a lovely crispy outside and the lovely, soft, yeasty bread on the inside. I think I might try getting some of the flavors in the topping into the dough itself next time, but they’re still nice either way!