Persimmon Nut Nappers (GF)

Full disclosure, I haven’t actually acted since August (this trend will be over soon, I have an audition next week).  I’ve had major parenting responsibilities.  My son is disabled and in order to make sure that he gets what he needs I’ve been fighting since April.  Fighting with the government.  Fighting with the school system.  Fighting with pharmacies.  Fighting with myself . . . .  Long story short, I was busy.  But even though I couldn’t pursue the stage/camera, I found time to hone my domestic skills.  I made Halloween costumes for my family and did a lot of baking.  A LOT of baking.
Recently, my neighbor Mr. S  gave me some persimmons.  I’m very fond of Mr. and Mrs. S.  They are very kind to my children and Mr. S wears this golden crab pendant around his neck that makes him look like the pimp of the sea.  That’s right, I like people based on how they accessorize.   So what?
Anyway, I decided to make cookies out of these persimmons and am going to share the recipe.  Now, I have celiac disease so I used my gluten free flour.  I’m pretty sure you can use regular flour BUT I don’t know for certain since I didn’t try (for obvious reasons).  My recipe is based on this one for pumpkin cookies at glutenfreeonashoestring.com.  If you or somebody you know has celiac disease, book mark that crap ASAP.  Seriously.  Also, Nicole Hunn has GF cooking books on Amazon that are as amazing as the recipes on her site.

finished-nutnap

BACK TO THE RECIPE!
The first thing you’re going to want to do, is make some persimmon butter:

Persimmon Butter

4 medium Fuyu persimmons cut into 1 inch(ish) chunks (you can peel them if you want but I don’t)
1/2-2/3 cup brown sugar (It’s up to you how much you want to use, I’m not your mom)
a pinch of salt
1/4 cup water
juice of half a lemon or one good squirt from those little plastic buggers you get at the grocery store

If you have a food processor, you can puree your persimmons now and mix everything all up in a small sauce pan. If not, put all that junk in there as is. Let it cook on medium-low heat until the persimmons are nice and squishy. It can take up to two hours. Just check on them every 20 minutes or so. If you already pureed your persimmons, you are looking to reduce the contents of the pot by about a third.
Let it cool and mash it with a fork or through a strainer to break down the chucks. If it still seems watery to you, go ahead and let it cook some more. It should have a consistency similar to apple butter.

Persimmon Nut Napper Cookies

2 cups flour (I used a homemade GF blend. If you use a gluten free flour, make sure it has Xantham gum in it OR add a 1 tsp of it to this recipe)
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup sugar
5 oz persimmon butter
7 Tblsp Butter cut into chunks and at room temperature (if you have that sort of patience. I don’t but you shouldn’t be like me)
Almonds (raw, roasted, salted, candied, whatever you want, go nuts)

Special Tools: Parchment paper, creepy man cookie cutter

Preheat your oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit or 180 C.
Mix all you dry ingredients together. If you have a stand mixer, use it. That thing was expensive and it’s not a decoration.
Add your persimmon butter and mix that up. With the stand mixer running on low, add your butter chunks one at a time OR stir them in by hand 2-3 at a time, you crazy beast.

When it comes together all dough-like, you’re good to go.

Roll the dough out on parchment paper to 1/3 inch thick (that’s like about 3/4 of a centimeter I think). Get your creepy cookie cutter and make some dudes. creepymanSeriously, my cookie cutter is weird and I hate it. I bought him as a set with this teddy bear cookie cutter which is what I SHOULD have been using but I lost him and now all I have is this little opposable-thumbed bastard. Check it out, the bears are much cuter.

If you need to put the dough in the fridge before cutting them out and baking them, that’s cool.  Just make sure that the dough is back to room temperature before you work with it. Otherwise, this happens:cookie-sheetOnly one guy managed to hold onto his nut!

So cut them out and arrange them on a parchment covered baking sheet.  Press one almond into each of their little chests and fold their arms over the nut and press them down.  You might want to give a little pinch to their shoulder area too to keep their arms in place while baking.

Pop them in the oven for 8-10 minutes.  Let them cool before you take them off the sheet.  I manage to wait about 5 minutes before I take them off the sheet because I’m patient like a saint.

Warning, some of your cookies will be rude:deezenutz

How We’re Taught to Look at Women (as Women)

I came across this article in my Facebook feed via a friend and it gave me something to think about.
Untitled
The article discusses some experiments that were done to determine if gender bias played a role in teacher evaluation.  The results were fairly compelling and showed that female students will in fact rate a female teacher lower than a male even when the experiment is controlled to the point that the only difference between the two is the perception of their sexual identity.

Students were taking a single online class with either a male or female instructor. In half the cases, the instructors agreed to dress in virtual drag: The men used the women’s names and vice versa.

Here, it was the female students, not the males, who rated the instructors they believed to be male more highly across the board. That’s right: The same instructor, with all the same comments, all the same interactions with the class, received higher ratings if he was called Paul than if she was called Paula.

And that higher rating even applied to a seemingly objective question: Did this teacher return assignments on time? (The online system made it possible to ensure that promptness was identical in every case.)

Kamenetz, Anya

Too bad there isn’t a way to determine the root of the bias. I’m tempted to think that the reason women rate a woman more harshly is because we expect more from other women. I know I do this and I have been trying to stop but I am automatically less forgiving of a fellow woman because I expect more from her than a man.
I mean, if a strange man starts a conversation with me, I am immediately on guard. I prepare myself for him to be rude or creepy or say/do something disagreeable. I begin the interaction by formulating a plan of escape. My expectations are so low that if he simply treats me like a human I’m impressed. Whereas with a woman, I automatically imagine that she is my equal in manners and intellect. I almost expect a certain protocol from her.
Women in authority are often portrayed as flawless in sitcoms, commercials, and other forms of media. The bungling father married to the smart, beautiful, insightful mother is a standard with which all Americans are familiar. Dads and male bosses screw up all the time, often for comedic effect. Moms and female bosses almost never do unless it is to point out that they’re too uptight or strict. And at the other end of the spectrum, we have the ditz. If a female character does foolish things, she will ALWAYS do foolish things. She’s rarely redeemed the way a male character is.
That being said, almost all of my favorite professors were women.

Troll

It is fairly common place to receive friend requests from complete strangers.  Probably everyone has experienced this at least once.  Recently, I accidentally accepted one of these invitations.  I was under the impression that the person who sent the request was somebody that I had met on set . . . I was mistaken.  I haven’t a clue who this man is or why he thought we should be friends.
I realized my mistake when the mystery person began to private message me.  Troll, my partner in crime, was sitting next to me at the time and immediately announced that this man obviously was trying to solicit nude photos and that, as my significant other, it was his duty to deflect these advances.   He took over my keyboard and proceeded to do what he does best:

trolla

 

 

I think this might be a cannibalism game . . .

So I was bouncing around the app store, as I do, and I came across this!
screen568x568

Love! Sushi Rangers
A romance dating sim where you date . . . sushi.

Huh?

So here is my synopsis based on looking at pictures and not actually playing the game at all (yet).

According to the site, your sushi-chef dad gets invited to a “‘High-Class Sushi Cruising’  and then all of a sudden he was taken overseas.”  I’m pretty sure that means that your dad gets kidnapped.  Probably by a radical eco-terrorist group hell-bent on ending the subjugation of aquatic life that has been the corner stone of the sushi industry since time immemorial.  Anyway, we never see him again because you can’t date your dad (GROSS) and this is a dating sim.  Later Dad!

Now that Dad’s out of the picture,  it falls to you, his daughter to save the restaurant.  As if being an adult woman trapped in a 12 year-old girl’s body wasn’t hard enough, you clearly have contracted some sort of brain parasite from eating improperly stored salmon. How else would you explain the sudden belief that your sushi ingredients have become boys?
sushi

These “Sashimi men” as the developer calls them, have a common goal. They want to help the protagonist keep the sushi shop open by getting her to feed them to her customers. If that isn’t the stuff of nightmares, I don’t know what is.

Pro-tip:  If a strange man suddenly appears in your home and announces that he is your food come to life, appropriate responses include:

a) go back to bed, you are dreaming

b) go to the hospital, you are very ill

c) grab the nearest weapon and dispatch the intruder, he is obviously a thief/murderer/creep who thinks he can trick you with his flimsy lies

Anyway, here’s a picture of you playing tonsil hockey with a bit of salmon (I bet that tastes fishy):

screen568x568

And sniffing the breath of a fried egg and . . . being put in a headlock(?).

In conclusion, if you have a passing interest in consensual cannibalism, an unhealthy love of food, or (like me) have a fascination with the weird, I think I found a game for you!

. . . men act and women appear. Men look at women. Women watch themselves being looked at. This determines not only most relations between men and women but also the relation of women to themselves. The surveyor of woman in herself is male: the surveyed female. Thus she turns herself into an object — and most particularly an object of vision: a sight.

-John Berger, Ways of Seeing

If you’ve ever visited my facebook page, you have probably seen a few posts about the unfair casting standards women have to face if they want to make it as actors or models.   It’s not uncommon for a breakdown to read something like this:

WOMAN :  Attractive, 18-22, red hair, 5’7-5’10, 100-120 lbs, blue eyes, athletic.  Secretary to the MAN.

MAN : Business-like.  The WOMAN’s boss.

I wish I could say I was exaggerating.

Looking for an acting gig is not the most uplifting experience and I’m sure a lot of female actors would agree with me when I say that when Idon’t book the gig, my first thought is that I wasn’t pretty enough.  But even if that’s true.  Even if the director thought I was a total dog.  That person’s (or anyone’s) opinion should not be a basis for my personal value.

When I was younger, I believed that movie stars and models enjoyed a kind of freedom from these insecurities.  After all, the fact that they were in films and magazines was proof-positive that they were beautiful.  Now they could move on to conquer greater things having passed this all-important test.  But that isn’t the case.  Those same women could be in tomorrow’s tabloid being publicly shamed for their stretch marks or gaining (or, paradoxically, losing) a few pounds.

The game is rigged.

If you don’t fit the standard, you lose.

If you try to fit the standard, you lose.  As one of the commentators in the above video so eloquently put, “Respect yourself, damn slut.”

You can’t win.  So, I guess my point is, fuck’em.  Maybe I’m an odd person to be saying that.    I chose to pursue a career that forces me to be a part of a meat market that constantly objectifies me on the off chance that I will be lucky enough to be a part of something bigger than myself.  And all those rejections used to be hard, but I learned to define my value as something I decide.  I just wasn’t what they were looking for, and that’s okay.

It’s okay to not be somebody else’s ideal.  Be your own ideal.  Be the person you want to be not the person somebody else thinks you should be.  Because that other person probably wouldn’t like you that way either.  As a great lady once said:

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.

-Eleanor Roosevelt

And, to be honest, it sounds a lot classier than “fuck’em”.