[x]Blackmoor Vituperative

Thursday, 2020-02-27

Taco and creole seasoning

Filed under: Fine Living,Food — bblackmoor @ 11:08

I make my own taco seasoning mix. The stuff that comes in packets always has sugar and silicon dioxide (and sometimes sawdust — cellulose). I am going to start mixing up my own creole seasoning, too (once my current can of premixed creole seasoning runs out).

Creole Seasoning

Update (2020-03-27): I reduced the salt by 1/3 and tripled the cayenne. I was happy with the result.

This is the recipe I plan to use for creole seasoning.

  • 4 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 4 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 tablespoons sweet paprika powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper (or less if you don’t want it as hot)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt (I use kosher salt for this)
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Grind it up in a coffee grinder, put it in a jar, and you’re done.

Taco Seasoning

This is the recipe I use for taco seasoning.

  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt (I use kosher salt for this)
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

Same deal: grind it up, put it in a jar.

Aside from the sugar and sawdust you find in store-bought taco seasoning packets, it also does not include the corn meal that is always in those packets. If you want to add corn meal (to thicken the sauce for burritos, for example), get a small bag of masa harina (like, a 1 pound bag — it looks like a small bag of sugar or flour — it’s actually corn flour). A little masa harina goes a long way, so keep it in the fridge in a 1 gallon ziploc bag (put the whole masa harina bag in the ziploc bag, don’t dump it out) and it will last for ages.

Don’t just use regular corn meal, by the way. That’s fine for making corn bread, but not Mexican food. You want “masa harina”. It’s different.

Thursday, 2020-02-20

The real cost of “Medicare for all”

Filed under: Fine Living,Health,Politics — bblackmoor @ 20:15

Taking into account both the costs of coverage expansion and the savings that would be achieved through the Medicare for All Act, we calculate that a single-payer, universal health-care system is likely to lead to a 13% savings in national health-care expenditure, equivalent to more than US$450 billion annually (based on the value of the US$ in 2017). The entire system could be funded with less financial outlay than is incurred by employers and households paying for health-care premiums combined with existing government allocations. This shift to single-payer health care would provide the greatest relief to lower-income households. Furthermore, we estimate that ensuring health-care access for all Americans would save more than 68,000 lives and 1.73 million life-years every year compared with the status quo.

“The Lancet”, Volume 395, ISSUE 10223, P524-533, February 15, 2020

Tuesday, 2020-01-28

“The Devil Rides Out” (1968)

Filed under: Movies — bblackmoor @ 11:12

The Shout! Factory blu-ray for “The Devil Rides Out” (1968) is quite well done. The print is clean and bright, and the extra features are fascinating.

This movie was part of a trend of 1960s “satanic” films, and while it’s not my favourite of that genre, I have a great deal of affection for it, in no small part due to Christopher Lee’s magnetic presence which anchors the film.

Sunday, 2020-01-26

“Pirates Of Blood River” (1962)

Filed under: Movies — bblackmoor @ 21:01

Watching “Pirates Of Blood River” (1962). What a great cast! Christopher Lee, Kerwin Matthews, Glenn Corbett, and a young Oliver Reed (yes, sadly the few female characters are little more than set dressing and prizes to be fought over… it irks me, but such was the era).

This movie is an example of a particular genre, which one sees more often in horror movies: a group of people (usually criminals) is betrayed by their greed, which leads them into a cul-de-sac of betrayal and death. If you haven’t noticed this before, keep an eye out for it: you’ll start seeing this plot everywhere once you start looking for it.

One of the things that irks me about this particular movie are the religious zealots who are so blinded by their hatred and superstition that they happily cause death and destruction to the people around them, because they are servants of “god” and they get a free pass. You see it a lot in movies set in the 16th and 17th centuries, particularly horror movies (maybe I just watch a lot of horror movies). You also see it a lot in places like Alabama and Washington, D.C. The word “evangelical” has become a synonym for “sneering hypocrite”.

But I digress.

I am amazed at what marksmen these Huguenots and pirates are with unrifled muskets and blunderbusses. You rarely see people in movies who are this accurate with actual rifles.

“Pirates Of Blood River” (1962) is a cool movie, worth watching. Do so, if you get the chance. The ending is rather abrupt and not entirely satisfying, but again, such was the era.