The Carl Online


Thanksgiving Leftover Recipe: Sweet Potato Pound Cake by carlmagazine
November 28, 2008, 10:19 pm
Filed under: Food | Tags: , , , ,

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First-off, imagine if I hadn’t been lazy and had posted this… wait this is the day after Thanksgiving. So this post-thanksgiving recipe is timely.

Is this a dessert? Or a side dish? I’m not sure, but we’ll find out soon, enough! It’s a straightforward pound cake, but with a little bit of a twist. My mom got this recipe from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, btw.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups granuated sugar
  • 2 cups cooked, mashed sweet potatoes (at least two sweet potatoes)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup sifted powdered sugar
  • 5 teaspoons fresh orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons grated orange zest

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a ten-inch tube pan. Next mash your sweet potatoes. Quickly whipping up mashed sweet potatoes is easy. Microwave them for three to four minutes, peel them, then mash them with a fork. Easy!

Combine the dry ingredients and spices. It’s very important to combine the dry ingredients beforehand so that the spices and salt will be evenly distributed throughout the cake.

Cream the butter with the sugar (if you’re really unhealthy, like I am, then you eat some of this deliciousness), and then add the sweet potatoes and the vanilla mixing very well. Eat some of this too. Cause it’s also very tasty. Next beat in eggs, one at a time, making sure to incorporate the eggs completely. Finally, add in your combined dry ingredients, and mix until combined.

Plop the combination in the pan, and bake for an hour and ten minutes. While that bakes, combine the sifted powders sugar and the orange juice together to create a sweet glaze. When the cake is out of the oven and cooled, drizzle the glaze an sprinkle the orange zest. Voila!

TASTE TEST Very good! A disclaimer, we ran out of sweet potatoes so we substituted a cup of mashed pumpkin for a cup of sweet potato, but I didn’t really taste much pumpkin, so I don’t think the substitution made a huge difference. The most surprising aspect of the cake is its moistness. It is dense and wet. Some said that the cake could have been a bit sweeter, but I think its subdued sweetness went well with the sweet glaze. Too much of a good thing can be just too much sugar. But I wonder what would happen if instead of two cups of sweet potatoes, two cups of the syrupy sweet mashed potato casserole dish that is always at Thanksgiving and is often served with marshmellows was instead used. That would probably bring up the sweetness. In sum, a fun twist on pound cake that is even more moise and dense than a typical poundcake.

-Alex Sciuto



Great Moments In DVD Pirating by Greg Hunter

radio



Norm Coleman Loves The New Yorker by Alex Sciuto
November 26, 2008, 9:19 pm
Filed under: Politics | Tags: , , , ,

But Im hot on the trail of my Google Doppelganger

On the drive home from Minnesota, in order to pass the time in the back seat of a Volvo driving through hours and hours of cornfields and the occassional Iowan town (Waterloo 4EVA!), I read for the first time a New Yorker magazine front to back. While the shock of realizing all that ten-point-font restaurant/concert/theater/movie front matter had maybe 5% more relevance to a Midwesterner like myself than I expected bringing the total relevance to a grand 5%, what I came away most remembering are the uniquely long physical descriptions of anyone mentioned moderately prominently in the magazine’s main articles.

Anyone who reads the magazine casually knows about the paragraph long descriptions of how a person looks and talks and walks that give the story a bonanza of incidental details that I guess the New Yorker’s editors think is the essence of its journalistic brand. The article about the crazy rebel who starts a brewery needs a description of his chiseled jaw and the swagger of his walk just like the profile of T.I. needs a description of his rock-hard abs to go along with coverage of his weapons charges. I don’t dislike these paragraphs, and they often give the New Yorker’s writers, all of whom are excellent, the chance to flex their descriptive powers.

I wanted to note in this post the frequency of them, but also how they vary. There’s one about a Chinese restaurant proprietor (square jaw, cigarette in his mouth, dark bushy hair, and a good socialist name that no one uses opting for his nickname), one about the restauranteur’s chef (gruff-voiced, thick eyebrows, sense of humor). Another character, a BBQ restaurant owner, also gets a paragraph devoted to his nickname and his ramshackle resume.

Listed and delineated with commas, the details are all similar, but the blending of details into narrative differs with each author. None of the writers drop a description into the story. The best one in the issue I read concerned the rebellious brewer because of how Burkhard Bilger brought the description back into the story. He ended describing the brewer’s voice (“his lips twist slightly to the side and his voice comes out low and wooly”) and, the final line was a quote. The quote, in relation to the description, appeared just as an good example of his diction, but when the next paragraph was read, the quote started the next part of the story. The description served not only to illuminate, but also served a structural purpose, denoting a new setting for the article’s narrative.

It was a lovely moment for me. I started the paragraph expecting the normal, but the end twisted my expectations making the descriptions something more than prettily arranged observed details.

Oh and Al Franken/Norm Coleman. Here’s a post from FiveThiryEight.com containing a primer on all the ballot challenges that are being mentioned in the news and on the web. If you don’t want to take the time to read the entire post, the gist of the post is that the numbers being mentioned daily of who is winning and by how many dozens of votes is meaningless. One type of challenge (the most popular) gives a candidate an immediate additional vote that will probably be dismissed when the challenge is actually arbitrated. We all know that the numbers are provisional, but until I read the post, I didn’t realize how provisional they really were.

-Alex Sciuto



The Penis Hits The Net by Greg Hunter
November 22, 2008, 11:14 pm
Filed under: Campus, Internet | Tags: , , , , , , ,

penis_in_heaven2

Anyone who’s been reading our print edition this fall is probably familiar with The Carl’s thwarted campaign to preserve Carleton College’s giant cement penis, spearheaded by humor editor Matt Pieh.  (Those who need a refresher, please see the October 10 and 24 PDFs.)  The dong is long gone, as Carleton students know, but it appears online commentators are only beginning to acknowledge the bravery of Pieh and activists like him.  Last week on local blog Locally Grown, Griff Wigley described his the destruction of the penis and linked to our magazine (http://locallygrownnorthfield.org/post/6595/). On November 21, First Time Caller, Longtime Listener–a blog based out of my own mother’s hometown of Buffalo, NY–linked to the Locally Grown piece (http://firsttimelongtime.wordpress.com/2008/11/21/friday-links-20/).  The members of Save The Penis didn’t ask for internet stardom, but they deserve all the accolades they’ve received.  And maybe, just maybe, the next penis will be saved because of their example.

– Greg Hunter



Why Didn’t I Think To Make That A Blog #3 by carlmagazine
November 20, 2008, 1:52 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized
Aren’t you amazed when one of your really smart friends, or really smart people on tv or in magazines throws out some idea or tidbit so obviously cool and interesting that you think “Why can’t I think of this. It’s so obvious.” I’ve noticed that lots of cool blogs usually have that same Ah Ha! moment. To showcase one of these conceptual jewels, here’s the third installment of Why Didn’t I Think To Make That  Blog. Of course, if you find one of these great blogs, you’ll shoot them our way won’t you?

——————

http://thisisindexed.com/

About (from the site): This site is a little project that lets me make fun of some things and sense of others. I use it to think a little more relationally without resorting to doing actual math..

Why It’s Great: If you love Venn Diagrams and conceptual graphs about subjects that should never never be graphed or diagrammed, then you’ll like this site. Honestly, though. This site is mainly about the concept of drawing simple illustrations on index cards attempting to make sense of the world. More often than not, the actual visual reflections are quotidian, but occassionally the author sums up an idea with a high level of wit and visual efficiency.

-Alex Sciuto



Teal Corn #1 by Alex Sciuto
November 18, 2008, 12:57 pm
Filed under: Campus, Cartoons | Tags: , ,

treeTeal Corn #1 (by Mag/Rao)



The New Final Frontier by Greg Hunter
November 17, 2008, 5:53 pm
Filed under: movies | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

The summer before sixth grade, I would turn on the TV at 9 o’clock most weeknights and watch syndicated episodes of the original Star Trek series.  I enjoyed the show immensely (especially McCoy’s blunt rebuttals to nearly anything anyone said to him), but didn’t devote much more time to Star Trek fanhood once school started again, that year or ever.  What’s so fortunate about all this now is that I’m approaching J.J. Abrams’ spring reboot of the franchise with a fondness for Star Trek but no real investment in it -as long as the movie manages to be imaginative popcorn fare, I’ll probably really enjoying it without sweating the details like a lot of hardcore trekkies probably will.  (Alternately, I think the Watchmen adaptation, which I’m decidely more invested in, might be a hyperstylized, slow-motion turd.)  I have no idea what I’d think of the first real trailer for the movie if I’d stuck with Trek, but Simon Pegg’s looks like he’s having the time of his life playing Scotty, McCoy’s characteristically sullen, and there are ‘splosions that you just don’t see on Star Trek episodes from 40 years ago.  It’s an undeserved treat for all us fairweather fans.

(Trailer available at http://www.apple.com/trailers/paramount/startrek/large_trailer2.html)

– Greg Hunter