Lazy Luddite Log

24.3.07

Homemade Lemonade

Over the Summer just past I made some homemade lemonade on a few occasions. It has been a while since I put any recipes here so I will now proceed to describe my version of this old favourite...

Utensils & Ingredients

A glass bottle, juicer, strainer, funnel, knife, chopping board, kettle, mug, spoon, several lemons, honey, tonic water

Preparation

If I have access to a lemon tree (even an overhanging branch from next door...) then naturally I will choose hand-picked lemons. However if they have to come from a shop so be it. Several lemons should do to provide the needed juice. Slice the lemons in half and juice them (using the knife, chopping board and juicer). Pour the juice into a one litre glass bottle. I have been using a spare Bickfords Lime Cordial bottle that was a 'limited edition' with one of those wireframe stoppers. I use a strainer and a funnel to get all the juice in while removing the pulp and pips. However to contribute to the 'homemade' feel of the drink I then separately add a token pinch of the pulp back into the lemon juice. Several lemons should fill approximately a third of the bottle.

Next I fill the bottom of a big mug with a generous helping of honey. Then I fill the mug to the top with boiling water and stir till the honey is dissolved. This 'honey-water' is now funnelled into the glass bottle till the bottle is two thirds full of both lemon juice and honey-water. This provides the drink with a degree of sweetness to reduce the sourness of the lemon juice somewhat but in a more interesting way that had I used sugar.

Finally I funnel in some tonic water till the glass bottle is full. I do this because I cannot entirely get over the childhood experience of thinking that 'lemonade' is the bubbly sweet drink that has nothing to do with lemons except possibly for a hint of tartness. The tonic water provides some carbonation to the mix and I also like to think that its own tartness helps to mediate between the flavours of the lemon and honey. Also as it has quinine it will cure ones malaria! As the tonic water is added it tends to make the whole mix go bubbly and overflow somewhat. I am yet to find a way of preventing this from happening but can minimise it just by adding slowly and intermittently.

The last thing to do is wipe the bottle down to get any residue off it and pop it in the refrigerator to get nice and cool. Then come back later and have some. It is a very strong tasting drink so do warn friends you are serving it to. The bottle will provide half-a-dozen serves so is best for small gatherings in warmer weather (e.g. like a picnic or barbeque).

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16.3.07

Bad for Good

I was remarking recently that pool (aka '8-Ball') was something I enjoy despite my poor performance in it. This to me seems an unusal thing. To my way of thinking it is natural to enjoy things one is good at and to feel the opposite for things one is bad at. However pool is an exception to this.

Just the other day at work I realised that I have another exception to this in answering the phone. Within the context of an office job I think that handling phone calls is the task in which I perform the best. And yet I still always look forward to the end of the call. This partly arises from the satisfaction of having completed the task well but arises much more from the fact that the task is simply over with and I can get back to some other task.

So I like but am bad at pool. And I am good at but dislike handling phone queries. Both these things seem contradictory to me. What am I missing here? Any observations on this one for me? Hey - to help facilitate responses to this entry I may even turn it into a 'meme' - here it is:

Hey Kids New Meme

1. Name something you are good at and enjoy. Do you like it because you are good at it?

2. Name something you are poor at
and do not enjoy. Do you dislike it because you are poor at it?

3. Name something you are poor at
but enjoy. Why do you like it?

4. Name something you are good at
but do not enjoy. Why do you diskike it?

All responses welcome.

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9.3.07

Blog Housekeeping

Some minor changes have been made to my blog recently. Some changes were imposed by the changeover to 'The New Blogger' while others changes I have made to content.

The imposed changes affected my profile page. To start with my age was suddenly listed as something close to that of Aphra Behn! I have fixed that particular mistake. The other thing is that now my profile lists both my occidental and oriental astrological designations. I want to state here for the record that I think of such stuff as nothing more than superstition. While I am at it I may as well add that I am agnostic on the topic of the existence of anything supernatural (including God) and skeptical of any suggestions that the supernatural impinges on the everyday world. I am also something of a secular humanist.

There are also other changes of my own making: The biggest change is that I have added a link to the Monash University Choral Society (MonUCS) in the sidebar under 'Things I am involved in'. I have been active in the group (most recently) for over 12 months now so figure it is time to recognise that here. They are a nice bunch and the music can be a lot of fun.

Also I am now using labels for posts thus making subject-oriented hunting a cinch.

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