(Jackson Street) Books on 7th is around the corner and on the internet tubes. We strive to be your full-service new and used bookstore, emphasizing good literature, progressive politics, and, of course, books about baseball. Opened in Hoquiam October 1, 2010

Friday, May 8, 2009

Pucker Up!

I decided to make lemon bars with the Meyer Lemons I had gotten from Jay's Fruit stand, and so I searched the googles for a while. I settled on this recipe from Diane's Desserts because she didn't use as much sugar as other recipes. And, oh! they are so good! Tangy, tart but still very sweet lemon bars. Here's the recipe:

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup (1 stick/4 oz/113g) unsalted butter or stick margarine, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons lemon peel

Sifted confectioners' sugar, (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C. Lightly spray a 8 x 8-inch square baking pan with non-stick cooking spray OR lightly grease pan with butter. Line the baking pan with parchment paper, extending paper over edges of pan so it is easier to lift the lemon squares out of the pan after cooling. This will make cutting the squares alot easier.

For Crust:
Add flour, butter (or margarine if using), confectioners' sugar, 1 teaspoon lemon peel and the salt to food processor container fitted with a steel blade; cover. Process mixture until coarse crumbs form. Press mixture firmly onto bottom of prepared baking pan. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until lightly browned.

Clean food processor container and steel blade for next step.

For Filling:
Combine granulated sugar, eggs, lemon juice and the 2 teaspoons lemon peel in cleaned food processor container and process until well blended. Pour evenly over warm crust.

To Bake and Finish:
Bake for 20 minutes, or until center is set and edges are golden brown. Transfer baking pan to wire rack and cool to room temperature then chill for 2 hours before cutting into squares or bars.

Cutting the Squares:
Using the edges of parchment paper to lift lemon squares out of pan, transfer lemon squares to a large plate or clean work surface, remove parchment paper and cut into squares. If desired, sift confectioners' sugar over bars before serving. Bar cookies keep, covered and chilled for up to 3 days.

If you do not have a food processor, combine the crust ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix with a pastry cutter or fork until coarse crumbs form. Bake as stated above. Then, in another mixing bowl, blend together filling ingredients until smooth. Continue with recipe as stated above.

Makes 12-16 squares.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Engineer's Guide to Cats

With bonus Cat Yodeling

Thanks Mutts!

we're sleeping in the other bedroom tonight

It's here. It's really windy. I'll keep looking to Cliff Mass for the forecast.

Gawd Damn your soul Rudy.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Department of Book Reports: Gods Gachupines and Gringos: A People's History of Mexico

For readers like me, who love history, yet have no expertise on many areas, Richard Grabman's Gods Gachupines and Gringos: A People's History of Mexico (Editorial Mazatlan $24.95) is one of those books that are just great. Told in a chatty, conversational, and anecdotal style, Grabman presents the wide array of Mexican history, from the Pre-Columbian Indian empires, through the conquest and colonial Mexico, to the revolt against the Spanish, independence, the years of Santa Anna and the wars against the Americans, Maximilian, onto the Revolution and Zapata and Villa, and finally more recent times. It is as colorful history as one can find.

Grabman offers an explanation of the title. Many interpret Gringo to be a perjorative term, which it can be if attached to an insulting adjective. But in normal conversation it merely means a non-Spanish speaking foreigner. It is derived from the Spanish for "Greek". After the fall of Constantinople to the Turks, many Greeks moved to Spain. Think of the Spanish artist, El Greco...the Greek. Gachupine was a name for the over-bearing Spanish overlords of colonial times, and still refers to "foreign Spanish speaking twit(s)".

And that is important. Grabman attempts to see a Mexico without the "white lens" of many writers. There is the multi-cultural Mexico that is often neglected and ignored. There are, of course, the Indian and Spanish influence; but there is also the influences of the Chinese, the Africans, Germans, and, yes, the Americans.

The book is not in wide distribution, but Jackson Street Books can provide copies. Or ask your local independent bookstore to order it for you. And old friend, Nezua, provides the art for this tome.

cross-posted from The General's.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Open House

We had a sneak peek Open House party at the new bookstore and the General took some pictures for us! What a lovely evening. Dano DJed until it was time for The Super Pink Thing to take over the airwaves and play labor rights tunes to celebrate workers around the world.

DJ Dano
Bianca, who gave me that super knitting rocking chair as a house warming prezzie!
The General! Whose help has been invaluable and I'll never be able to thank enough.

Thanks for coming over, my friends, we'll do it again soon!