Headlines for Wednesday:


Priorities - A: high, B: medium, C: low; Status - _: unfinished, X: finished, C: cancelled, P: pending, o: in progress, >: delegated. Covey quadrants - Q1 & Q3: urgent, Q1 & Q2: important
AX@0800 Return books, renew one book
AX@0900 Don't panic
AX@1200-1300 Q1 Do lab in RS303 from 2005.11.23 (teaching)
AX@1500-1800 Q1 Go to engg psych lab in RS303 from 2005.11.23 (mie1407f)
AXRevise outline for MIE paper
AXSketch outline for reading paper
AXWork on lab report
BXStart looking for references for Delta Kappa Gamma World Fellowship : E-Mail from Brenda Fung (grad)


1. Cook or Die

Categories: CookOrDie#49 -- Permalink
The dearth of recent CookOrDie posts doesn't mean I've figured out how to cook consistently well. Rather, it means that I just haven't been blogging much. <sheepish grin> Diane reminded me that some people find my narrow escapes from food poisoning actually _amusing._ Sickos. ;b Well, that's not what she said, but I'll take the hind.

I have so far managed to survive my cooking. I consider that one of my major accomplishments. This is what I've survived this week:

<b>Bean soup--no, bean heap</b>

I _meant_ to prepare bean soup last Friday: a nice, warm, nutritious meal before we headed off to Pride and Prejudice. Soup mix, lots of water, a bit of chicken stock powder for flavor. I left it simmering, covered, and set the stove alarm to go off after the time indicated on the soup mix packet. I then went to my room to talk to my research supervisor over Skype. By the time I checked on it again, all the water had evaporated. Oops! I quickly threw in more water, pushed it around a bit, then turned off the heat.

Verdict: Still palatable. Pleasantly crunchy and textured, even. Needs a bit more flavor. Probably better in small portions.

<b>Almost-lemon dill chicken</b>

One of the suitemates bought too much dill, so I searched the Net for recipes involving dill and I settled on lemon dill chicken. I remembered to buy the chicken, but I forgot to buy lemons. Oops. So I reached for the nearest liquids: olive oil and balsamic vinegar. (What was I thinking about? French bread?!) I mixed the oil and vinegar with garlic and dill along the lines of the original recipe. I dunked the chicken in the mixture and broiled the chicken again according to the recipe. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the chicken actually got cooked, although I wish I had seasoned it with something slightly more flavorful (salt and pepper?) or marinated it or something like that.

Verdict: Edible. A bit bland.

<b>Too-dry rice</b>

Oops. I put in too little water when I cooked rice.

Verdict: So far I've come up with several ways to use very dry rice. =) Butter helps a bit. Heat helps a bit. Mixing it in with everything else helps a bit.

<b>Garlic fried rice</b>

Doesn't quite work yet. I probably should've added the rice before the garlic browned. Maybe even at the same time?

<b>Tomato, onion and cheese omelette</b>

I'm getting better at these omelettes. =) This one was okay, too. I sauteed the onions before making the omelette because I didn't feel like biting into crunchy raw onion at the time. Might be fun making a salsa omelette, though.

<b>Leftover stirfry</b>

Chopped up remnants of that weird chicken thing + green beans I'd nearly forgotten about + carrots I'd forgotten about + too-dry rice + a generous pinch of ginisa mix + a couple of splashes of soy sauce = some kind of leftover stirfry which will do in a pinch.

<b>Rabbit-impersonation day</b>

I bought a bag of Caesar salad mix reasoning that a head of lettuce is intimidatingly large and that the ridiculous markup they have on convenience mixes like that was worth it just to see if I could happily eat veggies. I think it was meant for two servings as a main dish. I ended up finishing the entire thing. I guess that's a good thing. Oh, Mom and Kathy will be pleased to know that I now eat Caesar salad with dressing.

Life continues. If nothing else, I'm cultivating better resistance to bad cooking. ;)

2. Reflections on the lab ([[[[2005.11.23#2]]]] [[[[teaching#5]]]] [[[[TeachingReflections#23]]]])

Categories: None -- Permalink
I discussed the grading scheme for the Decision Support Systems class today. One of the good things about being a teaching assistant is that you get to see work by lots of students, turning up a lot of good ideas in the process. &lt;grin&gt; I showed off a project that got perfect marks from me because it was well-thought-out and creative. All students worked on a Microsoft Excel decision support system for investments. (Yes, I spent a small chunk of my life showing how to make Microsoft Excel do strange things.) I particularly liked that project because the group made an effort to adapt the interface to the personality of the user, and they also coded a simulation that randomized the ups and downs of each investment according to its volatility. That was cool. =) Nice graphs, nice user interface.

As for project 2: I'm a little concerned about the spread of the class. Some of the students have finished their project already. They either leave the class after my explanations or continue working on their other projects. Others are just now asking me about little details I thought I pointed out a number of times in the past few weeks. Hmmm. I wonder if this has anything to do with attendance or seating arrangements, or the fact that I taught a slightly different mix of things in a slightly different way each time I went over the basics (thrice!). The students who experimented a bit on their own seemed to do very well, but then students like that almost always do.