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2017 年 8 月 3 日  星期四   晴天

League’s demands unlikely to be met 分類: Loop app

CROSSING A LINE:A source said one of the demands had already been rejected and the others were not raised during three-party talks that took place last month
Demands by the National Women’s League that the government halt all investigations into its assets and affiliated organizations are its “unilateral opinions and wishes” that have already been rejected or are unlikely to be agreed to, an Ill-gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee member said yesterday.

The push-back by the league has also “crossed the committee’s red line,” the source said.

On Monday last week, the league filed a list of demands following a joint statement that outlined an agreement reached during negotiations between the committee, the Ministry of the Interior and the league. That statement — dubbed the ministry’s “three principles” — was supposed to provide a roadmap to resolve the league’s alleged mishandling of taxpayer-funded money given to the league between 1955 and 1989.

The statement said the league was to “donate” NT$31.2 billion (US$1.03 billion) of its assets to the government; “disband” by merging with a subsidiary, the Social Welfare Foundation; and allow public oversight of the Social Welfare Foundation and its two other subsidiaries, the Foundation for the Hearing Impaired and Hua Hsing Children’s Home.

Oversight would take the form of the government appointing one-third of the group’s board of directors and one-third would be public representatives, the statement said.

However, the league asked the government to refrain from taking further action against the charitable fund for veterans to the tune of NT$349.81 billion in today’s currency that it allegedly expropriated.

It asked for the right to nominate one-third of the board directors that are to represent the public, in addition to the one-third that it is already entitled to appoint.

It also asked the assets committee to refrain from “taking any further action whatsoever against organizations founded by the National Women’s League or any of its financial holdings.”

On Sunday, committee chairman Wellington Koo (顧立雄) said that public opinion is a factor in the continuing negotiations between the league and the government.

“One cannot accuse all negotiations with the blanket charges of opacity, compromise or failure; meaningful talks that solve the problem at hand should be seen as positive developments,” he said.

“From this committee’s perspective, if the league profess to believe certain organizations are its affiliates, then the committee is duty-bound to investigate them,” he said.

The committee member, who was involved in the three-party negotiations, said that the terms outlined in the league’s follow-up statement “were unilateral demands and opinions of the National Women’s League, and its demand for the committee to drop investigations on its affiliates had stepped on the committee’s ‘red line.’”

The league’s demand to nominate the public’s representatives on its subsidiaries’ boards had been raised during the three-party talks and been rejected by the committee.

The committee had agreed to the ministry’s “three principles” and nothing more, the official said.

None of league’s other demands were mentioned during the “three-party talks,” the official added.

“Carrying out the terms of the agreement that were arrived at during the negotiations will probably result in disputes over the fine print,” the official said.

2015 年 11 月 13 日  星期五   晴天

pumpkin-spice braided brioche knots 分類: 未分類

It’s chilly today, but the sun is peeking out from behind its entourage of cloud cover. The oven is preheating, and my to-do list has so many items on it; every time I glance at it my mind goes black and can’t figure out where to start. Distractions everywhere are whispering to me. It’s so cozy on that couch. Maybe you could play Farms and Castles just one more time while watching Parks and Rec dermes. I get out the butter, the sugar, the eggs, and flour. It’s time to get to work.

I’m sort of obsessed with these braided knots. I’ve been working on a version for my book, but couldn’t help also turning them into a post. They are so beautiful, and fairly easy to make once you get the hang of twisting and turning them.  I plan on making them this holiday season, and thought you might want try them, too.

Need more brioche in your life? I also have Pumpkin Spice Monkey Bread on Bread in 5 today dermes hk!

Pumpkin Spice Braided Brioche Knots

I used Bread in 5’s brioche dough here. It’s so easy to make and worked well for me in this application. Their Challah dough would also work well, and any favorite brioche recipe or sweet dough recipe should (in theory) work.

I have also made these knots with a sweet dough I’m working on for my cookbook, and found cutting the dough into 8 pieces worked as well. You will have to roll the dough slightly smaller if you do so – just make sure you have a long rectangle that isn’t too thin to work with, and you should be fine.

I should note there is no actual pumpkin in this knot – just pumpkin spices. I don’t mean to be deceiving, I just love all the spices that go along with pumpkin desserts, and wasn’t quite sure what else to call it. Other fillings can work here, too. Just make sure they are not too sticky – you want to be able to have neat, distinct layers as the knots are twisted and are baked.

2 pounds Brioche dough (see note)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
3/4 teaspoons ginger
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cloves
good pinch of salt
egg wash: 1 egg, 1 tablespoon of water, and a pinch of salt lightly beaten together

In a small bowl, combine the sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, and salt.

Cut the brioche into 6 pieces (or 8 – see note). Roll each piece into a ball, and cover the balls with plastic. Generously flour your work surface, and working one at a time, roll each ball into a 6 x 14 inch rectangle (if you have trouble getting your dough to 14 inches, don’t worry. You just want a long rectangle that isn’t too thin). Brush each rectangle with melted butter, and sprinkle generously with the sugar mixture. Starting with the long end of the dough, roll each piece of dough into a log. Place all 6 logs of dough on a baking sheet lined with parchment, and chill in the fridge for 10-15 minutes (this will help make cutting the dough easier). After the logs have chilled, trim about 1/4 inch off both ends of the roll. Gently cut the roll into half lengthwise, so the layers of dough and filling are visible (I found a scissors easier to use than a knife – it made much cleaner cuts). With the cut sides facing up, gently press together one end of each half, and then lift the right half over the left half, letting the layers fan out as you twist them. Continue until you have ‘braided’ the entire roll. Press the ends together, so each end has a point. Shape the twisted dough into a small circle, with both ends of the dough extending past the circle (the ends will make a sort of cross shape over each other). Bring the end that is on the bottom up and over top piece, and bring it through the center of the knot. Tuck the end that is on top underneath the bottom of the knot, and pinch the two ends together under the knot (see photos above for a visual). Place the knots on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, cover lightly with plastic wrap, and let rise for 1-1 1/2 hours, until the knots have risen slightly reenex.

Preheat the oven to 350, with the oven rack in the middle position. Brush the knots carefully with egg wash (try not to brush the sugar filling all over the knots while you do so) and bake until the knots are golden brown, about 20-25 minutes. (As the knots rise and bake, they will leak a little bit of sugar and butter, just like cinnamon rolls do.)

2015 年 9 月 25 日  星期五   晴天

Let me see her for a moment 分類: 未分類

“She didn’t tell anyone, Scarlett, especially not you. She was afraid you’d scold her if you knew. She wanted to wait three—till she thought it safe and sure and then surprise you all and laugh and say how wrong the doctors had been. And she was so happy. You know how she was about babies—how much she’s wanted a little girl. And everything went so well until—and then for no reason at all—”
The door of Melanie’s room opened quietly and Dr. Meade came out into the hall, shutting the door behind him. He stood for a moment, his gray beard sunk on his chest, and looked at the suddenly frozen four. His gaze fell last on Scarlett. As he came toward her, she saw that there was grief in his eyes and also dislike and contempt that flooded her frightened heart with guilt.
“So you finally got here,” he said.
Before she could answer, Ashley started toward the closed door.
“Not you, yet,” said the doctor. “She wants to speak to Scarlett.”
“Doctor,” said India, putting a hand on his sleeve. Though her voice was toneless, it plead more loudly than words. “Let me see her for a moment. I’ve been here since this morning, waiting, but she— Let me see her for a moment. I want to tell her—must tell her—that I was wrong about—something.”
She did not look at Ashley or Scarlett as she spoke, but Dr. Meade allowed his cold glance to fall on Scarlett.
“I’ll see, Miss India,” he said briefly. “But only if you’ll give me your word not to use up her strength telling her you were wrong. She knows you were wrong and it will only worry her to hear you apologize.”
Pitty began, timidly: “Please, Dr. Meade—”
“Miss Pitty, you know you’d scream and faint.”
Pitty drew up her stout little body and gave the doctor glance for glance. Her eyes were dry and there was dignity in every curve.
“Well, all right, honey, a little later,” said the doctor, more kindly. “Come, Scarlett.”
They tiptoed down the hall to the closed door and the doctor put his hand on Scarlett’s shoulder in a hard grip.
“Now, Miss,” he whispered briefly, “no hysterics and no deathbed confessions from you or, before God, I will wring your neck! Don’t give me any of your innocent stares. You know what I mean. Miss Melly is going to die easily and you aren’t going to ease your own conscience by telling her anything about Ashley. I’ve never harmed a woman yet, but if you say anything now—you’ll answer to me.”
He opened the door before she could answer, pushed her into the room and closed the door behind her. The little room, cheaply furnished in black walnut, was in semi-darkness, the lamp shaded with a newspaper. It was as small and prim a room as a schoolgirl’s, the narrow little low-backed bed, the plain net curtains looped back, the clean faded rag rugs on the floor, were so different from the lavishness of Scarlett’s own bedroom with its towering carved furniture, pink brocade draperies and rose-strewn carpet.

2015 年 7 月 20 日  星期一   晴天

Feta Frozen Yogurt with Blood Orange and Mint Granita! 分類: 未分類

Greek yogurt and Greek feta were meant to be friends, and served along with the Blood Orange and Mint Granita, it's an orgy of ingredient love. Too weird? Not for me... Anyway! If you've never bought a little cup of greek yogurt and put it in the freezer for your own frozen yogurt treat, then you're really missing out. This little dish takes that guilty pleasure to a whole new level. Here in Texas, spring really is right around the corner; our days are getting warmer, so it is perfect timing for this icy goodness. Some fun facts: this dessert is super healthy, but you can add sugar if you want. Also, sheep's milk cheeses have the highest fat content and the least amount of lactose, so they are really easy on your belly Nutrilon. Lastly, despite my pictures (a bit melty) this frozen yogurt holds up really well, more like ice cream, once you let it firm up all the way.

It's rare to come across a recipe that's both sophisticated and economical. Just four ingredients and three simple stages and you have a dessert that's easy enough to whip up for your kids and impressive enough for a dinner party. The granita offers a balanced sprinkling of bitterness and sweetness. And the frozen yogurt (which, by the way, gets very hard in the freezer; leave it out for a bit before scooping) is tangy with lashings of salt and honey. Make sure you use full-fat yogurt, and if you can't find honey-flavored, just buy plain and sweeten it with honey (we did it both ways and they worked out fine). And get ready for a grown-up, faintly subversive dessert.

Serves 4

For the Feta Frozen Yogurt

1/2 cup soft feta cheese, preferably fresh and packed in water.
9 ounces honey flavored greek yogurt

For the Blood Orange and Mint Granita

2 big fat juicy blood oranges
1 handful mint leaves
maybe have a small lemon on hand in case your blood oranges are crazy sweet and you'd prefer a bit more acidity
possible garnishes: a drizzle of honey, your sister's pink peppercorn sugar cookies.

Tune your iPod or Pandora Radio to Sarah Vaughan. Or Dinah Washington. Or just play Nancy Wilson's "Peel Me a Grape" on a loop.

Get out your immersion blender, or beaters, or your whisk and gumption, and put your feta and 6 ounces of honey flavored greek yogurt into a freezer safe bowl. Now beat or blend those fellas til they are smooth. Don't worry if there are some tiny chunks of feta, they are going to be little salty bursts of flavor in this sweet dessert.

Stir in the remaining 3 ounces of yogurt, cover with plastic wrap, and put in the freezer for a few hours or until frozen.

Cut the blood oranges in half, run a knife around the inside rim, and gut them with a spoon. Put the guts into a bowl. Don't worry if a bit of rind goes in, we just want as much pulp and juice as possible.

Squeeze any leftover juice from the orange peels. Zest the orange peels into the bowl. Throw in a handful of mint and immersion blend or food process the mixture til it is quite pulpy. Strain through a strainer. Compost the pulpy remains, or something, we're only using the beautiful blood orange juice infused with mint.

Pour a thin layer of the liquid into a freezer safe baking dish (I used a round cake pan, it was gangbusters). Freeze for 2 to 3 hours, but do check on it frequently and rake through it with a fork every time it looks like the liquid is freezing, maybe every 30 minutes? Keep an eye out and fork handy, as I'm not sure how cold your freezer is or which pan you used. My granita looked like glittery flakes of blood orange ice after only an hour and a half or so.

Scoop feta fro-yo into a pretty dish, top with granita, maybe with a drizzle of honey, and turn your music machine to Ella Fitzgerald's version of "Goody Goody," then eat your little treat standing up in the kitchen. And I hope you're satisfied, you rascal you!

2015 年 7 月 9 日  星期四   晴天

Mushroom Barley Soup 分類: 未分類

Author Notes: I always loved mushroom barley soup as a child but could never find a recipe to duplicate the flavors I remembered. As I grew more proficient as a cook, I began experimenting and found the flavors I remembered in this recipe I created. I hope you enjoy it!

Layers of flavor, each more concentrated than the last, are the key to this mushroom soup. You begin by browning pancetta and over the course of about 20 minutes, and then you add aromatic vegetables, tomato paste, both fresh mushrooms and rehydrated porcinis, soy sauce and sherry. How can it not be great? The soup simmers for an hour to cook the barley and blend the flavors, and by the time you're done you have a soup whose brothiness belies an intense grid of flavors.

Serves 4 to 6

1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms soaked until soft in 1/2 cup hot water (reserve water after soaking)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 shallot, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 ounces pancetta, chopped
1 pound cremini mushrooms, chopped
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/4 cup dry sherry
1/2 cup pearl barley
4 cups chicken stock
2 cups beef stock
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/3 cup minced fresh parsley

In a heavy stock pot add olive oil and saute pancetta until lightly browned.
Add onions, carrots, celery and shallot and saute until soft (about 10 minutes).
Add garlic and mushrooms and saute until mushrooms release some of their moisture.
Remove the rehydrated porcini from the liquid (reserving liquid), chop, and then add to the vegetables in the pot along with the barley and mix to combine.
Make a little space at the bottom of the pan and add the tomato paste, cooking for a minute or two to caramelize.
Add the soy sauce and sherry and simmer vigorously until almost all of the liquid has evaporated. Then add the stocks and the reserved liquid from the mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper.
Simmer soup, covered, for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until barley is soft. Add chopped parsley just before serving.