Books everywhere and nothing to read!
I hate starting a new book!
Well actually, I love starting ‘NEW’ new books, you know, ones I haven’t read before. That’s a rare occurrence for me. Even at the height of my money-making days I couldn’t afford to keep me in new books. Now even my new books tend to be used (Amazon Marketplace ships internationally!)
Besides, If I only read new books I wouldn’t be able to revisit my old favorites.
It’s deciding which of my hundreds (thousand +) of ‘old’ books I should re-read next that I hate.
It takes so long. I wander from room to room, getting lost in first this one, then that one…
Lately I’ve been letting size matter (yeah, like all those spam emails say). I’ve been searching out big books with small print; even better if it’s a series.
I have been tagged by the Passionate Palate for the Book Meme.
I’ve already done this the proper way a few months ago, so this time I decided to put a different spin on it. I can never resist talking about books. This time I’ll talk about pulp fiction.
1. Last book I read: “The Mists of Avalon”, by Marion Zimmer Bradley. I’ve owned it for years but never read it. Stupid woman! It was good…and at more than 1,000 pages perfect for my current reading mode!
2. My favorite book series:
“The Wheel of Time”, by Robert Jordan. 12 books (and counting) of more than 1,000 pages each, small print, this is a sci-fi series one can really sink the teeth into. Well written and a great story.
“The Roselynde Chronicles”, by Roberta Gellis. Old, historical romances set in the 12th century. 6 hefty books that focus more on the history than on the romance. She also has a set of medieval murder mysteries.
“The Outlander Series”. by Diana Gabaldon. 6 tomes (and counting) of historical, time-travel, not-really-romance-but-sort-of. A good read.
“The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”, by Douglas Adams. All 5 books in the trilogy (his words, not mine) are wonderful; slim volumes, but hilarious.
The poetry of Judith Viorst – starting with “It’s Hard to be Hip Over 30 and Other Tragedies of Married Life”. Her prose is also good: “Necessary Losses” is one that comes to mind.
I also like Michael Crichton, Terry Pratchett, Jane Austen and Bill Bryson. Their books may not be series but I’ll read them all IN a series so it’s close.
3. One book that I own, would like to read and haven’t yet: The Bible. I would also like to read the Koran, the Talmud and books on the other major religions in the world.
4. One book that I have always wanted to own but don’t: The complete, unabridged Dictionary… And a pedestal stand to put it on. Did I mention that it’s big?
If I am ever tagged for a third time I will talk about ‘serious’ books….or maybe food books….
Now I’ll talk about serious food. Seriously good food.
This is based on a recipe from the book ‘Risotto’. This is a very white, very creamy, very rich risotto. The end result should be almost soup-like, not stiff. Add the spinach at the end so that it just wilts. There was enough leftover for me to try Risotto de Salto, one of the traditional uses for leftover risotto.
1/2 cup plus 2 tbs Arborio rice (or other rice specifically for risotto – Carnaroli or Vialone Nano)
1/3 cup dry, white wine
2 1/8 cups chicken stock
1 tsp butter
1 tsp olive oil
1/3 – 1/2 cup spinach
1/3 cup whole milk ricotta (3oz, 90gr)
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese – freshly grated (about 1.5oz, 45gr)
Heat chicken stock and keep hot over low heat. Slice the spinach into strips. Peel and chop shallots. In medium saucepan heat butter and oil over medium heat. Add shallots and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Add rice and sauté stirring, for 2 – 3 minutes until rice has white center. Add white wine and stir. When wine is almost absorbed add a 1/2 cup of stock, stir. When stock is almost absorbed add another 1/2 cup and continue adding 1/2 cup at a time and stirring. Reserve 1/4 cup to add at the end. Taste the rice. They should be just ‘al dente’ – slightly resistant to the tooth but fully cooked. You can add a bit of water at this point if needed but you shouldn’t have to. Add the rest of the stock, the spinach and both cheese. Stir vigorously over heat to combine well and wilt the spinach. Spoon into a bowl and serve.
Risotto al Salto
Use any risotto the does not have big pieces of other food (beans, meat, etc.) in it. This risotto was probably not the best choice; with the ricotta it was a bit too creamy… Risotto alla Milanese would be perfect!
1 cup leftover risotto, room temperature
2 tsp olive oil
2 tsp butter
Lightly whisk egg in a medium bowl. Add risotto and mix. Heat 1 tsp oil and 1 tsp butter in 8″ (20cm) nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the risotto to the center of the pan and spread it out with the back of the spoon. Sauté 10 – 20 minutes, until it holds together and the top starts to look dry. You should be able to carefully lift up the edge with a spatula. Once you can, take a peak to see how brown it is. It should be a nice medium-dark brown before turning. I turned it using 2 plates: slide it onto one plate, put the other on top. Flip it over and slide it back into the skillet, to which you have add the remaining butter and oil, uncooked side down. Cook an additional 5 – 10 minutes, until browned. Remove, cut into quarters and serve.
BTW, I know 2 people, both males, who won’t read fiction. They happily watch trashy movies but won’t read fiction. How limiting! Both to the available book choices and to the imagination!
I, on the other hand will read the trash that comes in the post if I have nothing else. I also read while watching telly…..’cause I am the Book Wh*re!