“Ready or Not: A Mix for Pretending You’re in a 90’s Film to Cope with the Reality of Going Back to School”
I’ve found that listening to the My Mad Fat Diary soundtrack whilst pretending to be in the show as I go about my monotonous daily routine has made the process of returning to school much more bearable (in a very poetic and romantic way, naturally).
Here is a collection of songs from the 90’s and also not the 90’s to help you romanticize the hell out of this otherwise strange and unpleasant period in your life. Hope y'all enjoy xx
applebloom as a vampire. scootaloo as the devil. sweetie belle as milk and cookies. babs seed as a robot. diamond tiara as twilight sparkle. silver spoon as a witch. (but the hat fell off) twist as a candy cane clown.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease 18 muffin cups with cooking spray.
Roll out biscuit dough on a lightly floured surface to form 5-inch rounds. Place each round in the prepared muffin cups, pressing into the base and sides to form a dough cup.
Cook and stir sausage in a skillet over medium-high heat until browned and cooked through, 5 to 10 minutes; drain fat. Spoon sausage into dough cups.
Whisk eggs, milk, salt, and pepper together in a bowl until well-beaten. Pour egg mixture into each dough cup, filling each just below the top of the biscuit dough. Sprinkle Cheddar cheese on top of egg mixture.
Bake in the preheated oven until eggs are set and biscuit dough is golden, 15 to 18 minutes.
Melissa Clark’s Instant Pot Braised Pork with Garlic, Fennel and Olives
Servings: 4-6 Time: 1 hr 15 min, plus at least 1 hr marinating
STUFF 4 lbs boneless pork shoulder, cut into 2-in pieces 1 Tbsp kosher salt, plus more as needed 4 garlic cloves, grated on a Microplane or minced ¼ cup chopped fresh basil, plus more for serving 1 Tbsp chopped fresh rosemary 1 tsp chopped fresh sage 1 tsp finely grated lemon zest ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper ½ tsp crushed red pepper flakes 1 tsp fennel seeds 2 Tbsp olive oil, plus more as needed 2/3 cup dry white wine Squeeze of lemon juice (optional) ½ cup good pitted green olives, sliced Shaved Parmesan cheese, for serving
STEPS In a large bowl, combine the pork, salt, garlic, basil, rosemary, sage, lemon zest, black pepper, and red pepper flakes.
In a small dry skillet over medium heat, toast the fennel seeds until fragrant, 1-2 min. Transfer to a mortar and pestle and crush lightly (or do this on a cutting board with the side of a heavy knife). Add to pork and toss. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hr or overnight.
Using the saute function (or do this in a skillet), add 1 Tbsp of the oil to pressure cooker and let it get hot for a few seconds; then add enough pork cubes to fit comfortably in one layer with a little space around each piece. Let them brown for 2-3 min per side, and then transfer them to a plate. Add a little more oil if the pot looks dry, and continue browning the rest of the pork.
Add the wine and let it simmer, scraping up the browned bits, until it has reduced by half, about 2 min. Return pork to the pot, cover, and cook on high pressure for 1 hr. Allow the pressure to release naturally.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pork to a serving platter and tent with foil to keep warm. Use a fat separator to separate the fat from the juices, or just spoon the fat off the top (there will be a lot of it). If the sauce seems thin, use the saute function to simmer it until it thickens to taste. Taste the sauce, and add more salt and/or a squeeze of lemon to taste. Stir the olives into the sauce, remove the foil from the platter, and pour the sauce over the meat. Serve the pork topped with more basil and some shaved Parmesan cheese.
Serve over polenta or rice to absorb all the heady juices.
NOTE If you can plan ahead, make this the day before you want to serve it. The flavors will meld, making it even more delicious. The fat will also be easier to remove after chilling - you’ll be able to spoon the solid layer right off before reheating the dish.
This can also be made in a slow cooker on high for 6-8 hrs of low for 10-12 hrs.
Low carb pizza with salad and herby mayo.
Love this dish. Slowly adapting the recipe to give the base a more bread like texture/more substance rather than just feeling like it’s thick omelette with pizza topping.
Recipe: makes enough for 2 dinner portions with leftovers for 2 lunches the next day.
350g grated cheese (I use cheddar cheese but you can use mozzarella or a low fat cheddar)
2 table spoons of coconut milk
1 table spoon of mayonnaise
Mix all ingredients in a bowl except the flour. Once everything is mixed I slowly add the flour until I get a batter like consistency.
Bake in the oven at 200 oC until the base has become firm and started to brown. I bake in a deep ceramic dish that has either been greased with butter or lined with high quality grease proof paper.
Once the vase has firmed I mixed tomatoe paste with herbs (basil, parsley, oregano, salt pepper) this is personal taste dependant. Sometimes I add chilli, paprika, all sorts just to see if it works.
Then I topped with pepperoni, ham, feta cheese, spinach, more grated cheddar or whatever protein (precooked) and fat I feel like adding.
I then bake again at 200oC until the cheese has melted.
I then serve with a salad and a low carb sauce such as full fat mayonnaise either plain for with herbs and spices.
I’m still tweaking the base recipe. I’d like the base to be a bit more bready than what it’s currently at. But still tastes amazing!
Request: Hey could you do like a young Sirius black x reader please where like she and him have been going out for ages and she understands him having guy time so doesn’t mind him and the others having a night themselves once a month especially but when he then ditches her on their anniversary(him on a mucking up the days) she is embarrassed and furious etc and Remus is her best friend and finally tells his secret cause he can’t bear them being miserable cause of him pls?
(Y/N) smiled as she put her finishing touches on the room, making sure everything was perfect. The record player in the corner with all of their favorite albums in a stack next to it. The room decorated to perfection, without being too much. She examined herself in the mirror and ran her hands down the front of her black dress, smoothing out the fabric. The tower chimed, signaling that it was now six o’clock and (Y/N) squealed. She slipped on the heels she had brought with her and headed out the door, setting her path to the Gryffindor common room.
It was her and Sirius’ one-year anniversary, and she was beyond excited for the night she had planned for them. She hadn’t gotten to see him barely at all that day and the anticipation was killing her. As she walked through the castle she was barely able to keep herself from running, so full of excitement. She rounded the final corner and headed up the stairs leading to the portrait hole. She was about half-way up when the Fat Lady swung open and Lily climbed out of the entryway. She gasped when she saw (Y/N), awestruck.
“Merlin’s beard, (Y/N), you look amazing!” Lily said, putting a hand to her heart in feign astonishment.
“Why, thank you!” she replied, reaching the top of the stairs and beaming.
“What are you all dressed up for?”
(Y/N) blushed, and threaded a lock of (y/h/c) hair behind her ear. “Er–well it’s Sirius and my one year today. I was just coming to fetch him for our date,” she explained moving toward the portrait. Lily’s smile faltered instantly.
“Wait, (Y/N),” Lily said, grabbing her hand.
“What’s the matter?”
“He’s not here.”
(Y/N) scoffed, her smile faltering as well. “What do you mean he’s not here?”
“I–well, he and James, and Remus, and Peter… they’re out.”
She stood in stunned silence. He was out. He’d forgotten. The four of them had always had their boys nights once a month for as long as she’d known them, and she loved that they did. But never had she imagined that he would possibly stand her up for one, especially on their anniversary.
She felt her eyes begin to sting, and she snapped back to reality, seeing Lily’s concerned face.
“Are–are you alright?” she asked, placing a light hand on (Y/N)’s upper arm. She smiled and nodded weakly.
“I just–I suppose he won’t be back tonight, then, will he?”
Lily offered an apologetic smile in return before saying, “you know they normally aren’t.”
“Right.” She felt her feet shuffling in the tight heels, and removed them quickly. It was clear she wasn’t going back to the Room of Requirement tonight. “Well, I suppose I’ll just go up then.”
“No, don’t be,” She responded, shaking her head. “It’s not your fault.”
Lily nodded, and (Y/N) turned towards the Fat Lady.
“Slotted Spoons,” she said, and the door swung open.
When she awoke the following morning, the first thing she noticed was the ache she felt in her eyes. She rolled over to look at her reflection in the small mirror on her nightstand and she saw that they were red and puffy. She wasn’t particularly surprised… she’d spent the majority of the previous night crying. But now, an odd sense of calm had washed over her and she felt rather numb. She made her way to the bathroom, following her regular morning routine, adding extra concealer under her eyes to hide the evidence of the previous nights tears.
She made her way down the stairs and through the common room, before feeling a pair of arms wrap around her waist from behind. She stopped dead in her tracks, but it didn’t elicit a squeal like it normally would have.
“Good morning, love,” Sirius said, planting a soft kiss to her temple. She looked down at the arms surrounding her, and felt the ache in her head return as she fought to keep tears from forming again. She pried his arms away and began to walk away from him, but he quickly grabbed her hand and spun her around to face him. “Hey, what’s the matter?” he asked, lifting her chin to look him in the eyes. He saw tears brewing along the base of her lids.
She pulled away from his touch yet again, crossed her arms in front of her for protection, and felt a tear fall down her cheek as she looked into his questioning eyes. “You don’t even remember what yesterday was, do you?”
“I–” he began as he frantically sent his mind probing for an answer for her. It suddenly dawned on him, and his jaw dropped open. (Y/N) scoffed as she saw his gaze turn desperately toward her. “Shit, (Y/N), I–”
“Don’t, Sirius. I get it,” she said. She backed away from him a few steps and then turned and climbed out the portrait hole.
An awkward silence surrounded the Marauder’s at dinner that night. The three watched as Sirius absentmindedly pushed the food around on his plate, a scowl across his brow. Remus looked down the table and saw the same scene with the girls. Lily, Marlene, Alice, and (Y/N) sitting together. No one was laughing down there, either.
“Alright, this is ridiculous,” James blurted out finally. “Padfoot, what the bloody hell is going on with you?”
Sirius didn’t look up from the plate in front of him as he let out a miserable sigh. “Last night–” he began. “I forgot. I completely forgot.” He ran a hand through his hair, trying to ease the pain he was feeling. “It was our anniversary. And I forgot.”
Finally he looked up at his friends, all of whom had jaws dropped.
“Oh, bloody hell,” James muttered.
“But she understands, doesn’t she?” Peter asked. “What with Moony and all, she’d have to understand why you couldn’t’ve been there–”
But Remus cut him off, “She doesn’t know.” Sirius’ eyes fell back to his plate of food. Remus had been best friends with (Y/N) for years now, and it wasn’t that he didn’t trust her with his secret. He’d entrusted his closest friends with the knowledge of his lycanthropy; the marauders and Lily… but (Y/N) had told him first year the story of how her father had been killed… by a werewolf. He hadn’t been able to bring himself to tell her for fear that she would hate him because of it.
But seeing Sirius this miserable… that he had forgotten his anniversary with the love of his life because he had been helping HIM with his “furry, little problem” instead of being with her… that was something he couldn’t live with.
Out of the corner of his eye, he saw movement come from the group of girls, as (Y/N) stood to leave the table, food still untouched.
“I’ll see you guys later,” Remus said, standing up quickly to follow her. Sirius continued to stare down at his plate, but the other two’s eyes followed the tall boy with panicked expressions.
As he rounded the corner, he called out after her, “(Y/N)!”
She looked over her shoulder, and seeing Remus, stopped to wait for him. “Is it alright if I walk with you?” he asked. She nodded and turned to continue walking. They did so in silence for a long while. She had her arms crossed in front of her, the way she did when she was upset; her little protection from the world. And his hands were in his pockets as he fumbled with the words in his head.
“Sirius told us about last night,” he said quietly, peering into her face. Her eyes began to water at the mention of his name, and she shook her head slightly, trying to regain her composure. “I’m really sorry.”
A sad laugh escaped from her mouth as she looked anywhere but directly at her best friend. “Don’t be. It’s not like it’s your fault.”
“Actually, it is. Much more than you realize,” he responded, a solemn tone. She looked up at him, a mix of emotions on her face; hurt and pained curiosity dominating them all.
“How d’you mean?” she asked quietly, stopping in her tracks.
“I–” he began. His eyes began to wander around the corridor, not looking at her. “Every month, we have our boys night thing.”
“I’m aware,” she said, a little bitterly.
“But it’s not what you think it is. I haven’t told you this. I didn’t want it to affect our friendship. But I need to tell you something.”
(Y/N)’s mind began to race as he spoke, starting to panic slightly. It seemed like he was about to confess his love for her or something.
“Once a month, the four of us sneak out under James’ cloak–you know the one–and take a secret passageway under the Whomping Willow to the Shrieking Shack–”
“But that’s haunted!” (Y/N) whisper-yelled, amazed at their stupidity.
“It’s not,” he said firmly. People only think it is. We go there once a month. You know the nicknames we have for each other?”
“Of course,” (Y/N) responded. The nicknames were odd, and very silly to her, and she always refused to use them. She found Peter’s especially to be quite ill-humored.
“Well, what you don’t know is that there’s a meaning behind each of them. Peter is Wormtail. He can turn into a rat. James is Prongs. He turns into a stag. Sirius is Padfoot. He turns into a dog. And me…” he faltered, his voice breaking slightly.
“Moony. What, you turn into the moon?” She asked, scoffing slightly at the ridiculousness of it. But then it clicked. Moony. Last night was a full moon.
“I’m a werewolf, (Y/N),” he said. The words held such a weight to them, the pain they caused him confessing it… she could tell how much it hurt him. “They became animagi illegally to help me. To protect me from myself when I transform, so that when I do, I won’t be alone. And–and Sirius was so distracted all day yesterday because of me. I was worse than I normally am, and it’s my fault that he forgot.”
She watched as a tear rolled down the tip of his nose, and she threw her arms around his neck, pulling him into a tight embrace. He faltered for a second before hugging her back.
“I thought you’d hate me,” he said through his tears.
“Remus, I could never hate you. You’re my best friend,” she said pulling away to look at him. “I’m sorry I made you feel like you couldn’t tell me before though.”
He smiled at her, and his gaze flew past as Sirius rounded the corner. Remus cleared his throat as his other best friend approached the two of them. “I think I’ll give you two some time. See you later,” he said, squeezing her hand slightly before walking up the stairs to the common room.
(Y/N) turned to face Sirius, who was looking at the floor, unable to make eye contact with her.
“(Y/N), I–” he began, but was immediately cut off when he felt her hands wrap around his neck and her lips press firmly against his. She felt him stiffen at first from the shock, but almost immediately relax completely as his arms wrapped around her, pulling her tightly to him. After a few moments, she pulled away to catch her breath.
“I’m so sorry,” he said, pressing his forehead against hers.
She smiled, and looked into his eyes. The eyes she loved with her whole heart, and whispered, “It’s forgotten.”
Rigatoni con la Coda alla Vaccinara alla Maniera di Ada Boni (Old School Roman Ox Tail Stew with Rigatoni)
I know I promised to be more frequent with my posts but stuff happened in the meantime.
I moved to a new place, I broke all my good plates (that’s why you see a tiny bowl in the picture) and I was generally submerged by other things. I hope you’re all well and up for some more tasty Italian recipes.
Today’s recipe is a milestone of the Italian tradition: Coda alla Vaccinara.
I followed the instructions of a very respected keeper of Rome’s culinary culture: Ada Boni.
This woman wasn’t a professional but thanks to her passion she collected the core of Roman cuisine’s tradition in a couple of books released by the end of the 1920’s.
Her work is still considered as a sort of Bible in the matter so there’s no better source if you want to cook this kind of stuff.
Roman cooking is straight to the point and badass: the ingredients are seasonal and “poor”, the pairings rustic and the portions abundant.
It’s the total opposite of modern fancy cooking as it’s honest, heartwarming, super yummy and “real” food.
Eating a traditional Roman dishes is a bit like leaping back in 1800’s Italy, when being poor meant you had to adapt and using creativity to put together nutrient and satisfying food with whatever was available.
Maybe the idea of eating the tail of an animal can gross you out if it’s not in your culture but it’s well worth to try: it’s delicious, cheap and it proves that offal deserves our respect too.
The original recipe doesn’t specify quantities so I’m just reporting the amounts I used. With this setting me and my husband had a rich dinner and a good plate of pasta the following day.
To make a good old Coda alla Vaccinara you’ll need:
Strutto (creamy lard obtained from pork fat), one spoonful
Lard (the pancetta-like one), finely minced
1 big yellow onion, finely diced
1 big carrot, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1,5 kg Ox tail cut and rinsed
Salt and pepper to taste
Half a glass of red wine (there’s no need to use a fancy one)
2 spoonfuls of tomato concentrate
6 celery stalks cut crosswise in 5 cm chunks, blanched and set aside (this is MANDATORY)
Melt strutto in a large pan on low fire.
When it’s transparent add the lard (neither of them should fry for now, so be careful with the temperature) and let it cook until it dissolves.
I used Lardo Di Colonnata cause it comes from my husband’s hometown and it’s tasty as hell, but any kind of lard will do.
Gently raise the flame and add onion, carrot, garlic and celery.
Stir until they soften up and the onion gets a blonde tan.
Raise the flame again to medium/high fire and add the oxtail, salt and pepper.
Cook the tail until it becomes golden brown and then add the wine.
Let it simmer until the alcohol evaporates.
Add the tomato paste, stir and finally cover with the warm water.
Set the flame at a very low fire and find something to do in the meantime because this will take a few hours.
Tradition dictates that Coda alla Vaccinara should cook for about six hours and stirred from time to time.
When only 30 minutes of cooking time are left boil a bowl of salted water and blanche the celery for one minute ca. (save this water for a mischievous project I’ll explain later).
Add the celery to the ox tail mix (which should be dark and thick by now) for the last ten minutes.
Now your Coda alla Vaccinara is ready.
Enjoy it with a generous glass of wine.
For maximum debauchery you could boil the water from the celeries and cook some Rigatoni in it then stir them in with part of the ox tails and their sauce. This way you’ll obtain one of the tastier pasta dishes ever to go along your Coda.
Trust me, the extra effort is worth it. You can also prepare this pasta the day after (this is what I did: I ate the Coda in the evening and it was too dark to take pictures so I waited for the next day for a good bowl of pasta).
Traditionally Coda alla Vaccinara is made with ox tails and cheeks (gaffi) but I didn’t find the latter (Oslo people: if you know where I can find them contact me!). Anyway cooking something that was on a face together with something near the arse says a lot about Roman spirit.