Friday, July 19, 2013

Thai Chicken Legs

I thieved this recipe from here, made it to spec and immediately made a bunch of changes to perfect it for me. This may have involved far more explosions than one expects with a chicken dinner.

Start off with:
  • 3 medium cloves garlic
  • 2 teaspoons whole black peppercorns, coarsely ground
  • 2 tablespoons minced cilantro stems
  • Alternative (1 teaspoon curry powder & 1 teaspoon garam marsala)
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1/2 cup “lite” coconut milk
  • chicken drumsticks and thighs, skin removed, trimmed
Chop and dice up the garlic and dump it into a bowl. To that add the pepper, the cilantro (which is totally optional if you hate that mexican parsley), the alternatives if you have them, and the salt.
 Mash in the fish sauce and mix it all up together in a pastey kind of goo. I have no idea why the original recipe calls for the use of a food processor or mortar and pestle. It's rather pointless and kind of a waste of time.

Now measure out a 1/2 cup of coconut milk from the can you could find at the grocery store. This will leave a cup left, but save it. Use it later as a base for some minute rice, add a bit of curry powder and some bullion and you'll have awesome fake risotto.

Skinning chicken is a giant pain in the ass, but I learned a trick. Wrap a paper towel around the slippery subcutaneous fat and rip with all your might. The towel grabs onto it well and makes the whole thing way easier. I have nothing against fat, but as these are grilled, dripping oozing skin fat and open flames do not close friends make. Leave it on at your own risk.

Drop your chicken into the bowl of coconut milk goo:
I then like to drop them into a bag to help them suck in the juices.

Now for the biggest change to the original recipe, put them in the fridge for 8 hour or overnight to marinate. Their 1/2 to one hour does pretty much nothing. I'm not even sure why bothering.

Okay with the magic of the internet it's now 8 hours later. Crank your grill up to medium heat and toss those chicken babies onto it for 15-20 minutes.

Time to get down to the really tasty part, the sweet & spicy sauce.

For the two of us I cut the sauce in half because we don't need much.:
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar or cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • pinches of salt
Get the rice vinegar to a boil (you will see time and colors so beautiful you'll weep for what can never be while this is happening, it's perfectly normal) and dump the sugar in stirring quickly so it will dissolve.

Now the original recipe says to let this simmer for 3-4 minutes but with the half recipe this is waaay too long and creates a sweet and spicy candy. I got for 1-2 minutes instead.

Add in the red pepper and garlic, let all that simmer for one more minute. Pull off the heat and add in the salt.

Ta da! Dipping Sauce:
 Put it all together and you have some flavorful grilled chicken legs and a sauce that's bread dippingly, get every drop delicious.

Also don't forget the rice, seriously, coconut milk rice.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Spider Wreath

Over the weekend I made this:
Well "made." I actually did little beyond adding paint and spiders, but I'd been wanting something wreath like to hang over the door for Halloween. Something I can easily put up to warn people starting in September; shit's about to get spooky.

And it is crazy easy to do if anyone else wants one.

Start with a stick wreath from your particular hobby store of choice.
Spray paint it black:
Now, take a brush, dip it in white paint, then water, and use that to highlight sections of branches. If you go too crazy, don't worry about it. You can either wash the paint off with water or paint over it with black and start again.

Once that's dry just take a trip back to your spider drawer, make a few selections, maybe grab a skeleton to wrap in webbing and hot glue everything together.
Ta da! So easy even I can do it.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Thursday is...

Thursday is the kind of day that collects spoons. Not souvenir ones, just regular ones he steals from restaurants.

Wednesday is obnoxiously loud and has no concept of personal space.

Tuesday, on the other hand, is quiet. Serial killer "he was such a nice boy" kind of quiet.

Poor Monday is the Eeyore of the days, always being compared to its brother Friday and falling terribly short. 

Saturday not only owns a beer can hat, but uses it regularly. 

Sunday is prim and proper, a pearls and cardigan wearing WASP, until the sun goes down, then it's off to Tuesday's dungeon. 

Friday is exceptionally chirpy, almost gratingly chirpy, but we put up with it because "Hey, it's Friday!" 

Monday, July 8, 2013

Mad Scientist: Lab Tech

Instead of writing, I made this. It's also why I rarely make comics and never ever draw people. Ever!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Boney Shoes

My house is one stone sarcophagus from becoming a crypt thanks to the piles of skeletons, bones, skulls, and various asunder bits and pieces that could be turned into bones given the right time.

So of course I figured I needed to add more of my own. Boney Shoes:

 I haunted (get it?) around looking for a pair of white canvas shoes to have the cleanest palette to begin. Then came the long, dull sketching anatomy lesson when you question your sanity as you're trying to doodle on the tongue of a shoe.
I lined the pencil in sharpie ink, which can occasionally be a problem if you use real sharpie, but this was the pen version. Those things are awesome.

I decided to paint the outside of the lines first because I cannot be trusted with black. It goes everywhere. Note the lovely floral pattern. Death feels so pretty.
The toe bones, while time consuming, were not too difficult to paint. I used about four shades, a deep brown to highlight the bone lines, a redder brown give depth around the edges, then a honey nut brown on top of the red brown, and finally globs and globs of a not quite white swirling on occasion with the other browns. All to get the illusion of boney bones.
Once I was happy with my bone painting, I hosed the entire thing down with my thick clear acrylic coating. A few times. This should help with any peeling/cracking, but these aren't all weather or terrain shoes.

I debated for a while whether I wanted to try the task of painting the soles. Eventually I decided to throw insanity to the wind and have a go. For that I used the plastic fusion spray paint, because that shit makes the world go round.

The final step was to lace the shoes, very carefully and tada:

Shoes fit for a Grim Reaper on Holiday: