Archive for December, 2010

A really bad news channel

December 30, 2010

Do you like reading John Grisham? Enjoy watching political thrillers? Here it is enough to put the news on. BBC News. The manipulating force in Britain.

News programmes usually take half an hour. The British convention is to first report about the country’s politics, then move to unimportant stories like some architect’s death – these two blocks take up about 15 minutes; next they report on international issues for about 2-3 minutes followed by 10  minutes of sport news and a 2 minute weather report. They love reporting for hours and months on end about some girl who went missing while on holiday in Portugal or another missing girl, later found inside her uncle’s sofa. Well done, boys! Another subject on the agenda might be a swinger’s club habitué politician or the colour of the dress of Prince William’s fiancée, taking up three quarters of the news time. Not meaning to sound too obsessed, I would call it a great strategy of distracting viewers’ attention from the actual significant current world issues.

Another tactic used in British news (by BBC in particular) is to twist the truth a little bit and continue brain-washing the unexpecting viewer. This morning, for example, I watched a programme called Review on BBC News channel. It talked about the most recent general election and the coalition formed as its result. According to Laura Kuenssberg of BBC News, David Laws’s time as the Treasury Secretary was ‘cut short by allegations over his expenses’ (where they really only allegations, Laura?) and he was a ‘casualty’ of the coalition (are dishonest politicians called casualties nowaday?).

The one good thing about the programme was that it showed politics in Britain is more about stardom than keeping one’s promises – as shows the example of Nick Clegg.

For a while now I have been finding watching the news upsets me. This is not because they show tragedy and sad stories but because they try to feed people this pulp of distorted and re-formed information spam.  And now Vince Cable, the person who could ‘take’ Rupert Murdoch, has been deprived of his power. Why? Because he is one of few who dared to say the truth?


Chestnut chocolate cake

December 28, 2010

The chestnut cake recipe from Canadian foodnetwork was certainly tempting, particularly, that I love baked chestnuts, and then I also bought a can of creamed chestnuts and had to find use for it. It took me three days to make a simpler version of the cake (without filled rolled wafers) and I finally finished it on Boxing Day. And although its seven layers combine into something crunchy-chocolatey fabulous, it is extremely filling and for a while I cannot look at cakes any more. The only consolation for this effort is that my boyfriend loves it and cannot stop eating it!

Next time I make the cake, though, I will implement a couple of adjustments.

  • I had already added some softly whipped cream to the chestnut purée which forms the middle layer. Next time I will also add some cream or soft cheese to the crunchy layer as in my opinion it is too solid and makes the assembled cake difficult to cut.
  • The last remark is that I would better like the chestnut taste being more subtle, so next time I will replace some chestnut purée with softly whipped cream, mascarpone or white soft cheese.

View from Dean Bridge

December 27, 2010

The view was stunning and lacking a proper camera I took a photo with my phone.

Christmas gluttony

December 27, 2010

This is the cake I made for Chritmas. No, I didn’t, that’s a fat lie. My friend Ewa made it and we all devoured some on Christmas day.

There is an appeal, though, regarding the cake – Little Gold Santa is missing and Little Gold Snowman has been looking everywhere for his pal, so if anyone has seen Santa, please get in touch! There is a reward of one piece of cake for the finder but you need to hurry!

Ewa also made delicious orange & chocolate and mixed nut cookies and scrumptious edible snowballs. The modest banana and date loaf came from my oven.

My moves are still restricted after all the food I’ve had at Christmas. Miserable diet days awaiting.


Merry Xmas

December 24, 2010

This year it’s Xmas instead of Christmas for me. It’s just taken on a simplified and devoid of stress, however still very joyful, form. Thus –
merry Xmas everyone!

Pain crème – creamy bread

December 22, 2010

This butter-soft dough is heavenly to work by hand and produces delicious bread or rolls which taste like brioche. Recipe and instructions, adapted from a bakery, can be found on dailydelicious. (If you look at the recipe it says “60 cc water”; cc stands for cubic centimetres and cc=ml.) I used fast action dried yeast and was terrified when I saw that the dough grew overnight in the fridge! It was still fine to work with afterwards.

Thriller Live

December 19, 2010

The last Thriller Live performance in Edinburgh Playhouse on 11 December 2010.

Return from a party

December 12, 2010

In Edinburgh the streets and pavement are not being cleared of snow. (A way of saving money?) Some grit and salt is sprinkled occasionally by the council – everyone has to cope on their own. Sometimes they simply close the schools and shops down.

Imagine now you are going out and have to walk on an icy pavement in high heels.

The moon smiles over Edinburgh

December 12, 2010

Can I ask for your opinion? Does this photo look better in colour or black & white?

There isn’t much colour on the first one, mostly just grey, blue and yellow, however, somehow it still manages to make a difference (no software manipulation!). Does it have more character that the b&w picture?
Thank you in advance!

Winter sky

December 1, 2010

Sikh Temple, Edinburgh (former St Thomas’s Church) in two versions.