January 21, 2006

Today's word is Sauce

I've been playing with some of amazon's new features this morning. I like the new concordance feature. (Note how my book on sauces frequently uses the word "butter". )

The other nifty feature I've been playing with is statistically improbable phrases and capitalized phrases. Go to a book, like Rick Bayless's cookbook. Scroll down to the "inside this book section", there are phrases that Amazon has guessed are significant. If you click on one, say "pork country ribs", it'll give you a list of all the books they sell that contain the phrase "pork country ribs" with a bit of context.

I noticed that you can tweak the url's a bit to search for any phrase in any book:

(Or get my firefox search plugin.)

And now I'm running off to work on the house again.

January 02, 2006


I went back to Michigan for Christmas vacation again this year. It was a very relaxing and much needed vacation.

This year I bought a knife bag to carry my knives and spices home. I ended up only cooking a few times. I made Pumpkin Penne for my parents. And Emily and I made Rogan Josh, a Chana dish, and an attempt at rice pudding (it didn't set up) as a birthday dinner for Carmen (with Dan and my parents).

I left early to celebrate my Dad's 60th birthday. Followed by Sarah's Christmas party, for the first time. She always has a fun charitable outing in her parties. Last year they went to toys 'r us and bought gifts for needy children. This year we went to Barnes and Noble to buy books for kids. Everybody threw money into the pot and we shopped. It was a lot of fun.

Next I went to Sheri's Christmas party. Last year I went home early to make Sheri's party, and it worked out very well for me. (I met Emily.) Emily and I stayed a couple of extra days, dining on leftover pork, salmon, and shrimp and watching Dr Who.

Then Emily and I went back to Lansing and hung out for a few days. We watched "The Family Stone", made Indian Food, met up with Brad and Maggie for dinner, and made some pumpkin muffins.

I took Emily to my mom's family Christmas on the 24th, and got to do our family Christmas thing on the 25th. (Gifts, lunch, and stockings.) My Dad's mom and Carmen's parents joined us for lunch and stockings. It's been a lot of fun since Carmen's parents started joining us - bringing some Cantonese food to go with our more traditional fare.