Get Series(ous). #7

Good morning, scamps!

It’s WORLD BOOK DAY!! I’m cosplaying as a book. Not a character. That just means I’m making a lot of “opening” euphemisms/jokes and getting kinda dusty. Later in the afternoon, I may go digital.

Today is…

get series(ous).

Today’s Get Series(ous). was first introduced to me by my platonic soul mate. That crazy nerd is a fount of awesome recommendations. Save for that one time she told me I should shave my head like Skrillex and become a Scientology-leaning fundamentalist. That wasn’t her best moment. We’re both more Pastafarian-y.

FSM+PSM 4L, ramen.

I’ll be the first to admit that I was super dubious about this series. I have no idea why. It may have been the cover of the book, which features a dude with a goatee/flavor savor/nearly Guy-Fieri-as-hot-druid look to him. I hate goatees. I have some pretty severe poorly-tended facial hair prejudices. Let’s look at examples, shall we?

This look says: “I will take your virginity on prom night in the back of my Cavalier, even if I’m 25.”

This picture says:”I want to do dirty things to you. In my bed. In a home I do not share with my parents.”

Should facial hair or Jason Momoa be relevant to this series? Absolutely not. It’s not a fucking romance. It’s a gods damned urban fantasy. I simply cannot truly elucidate my loathing of goatees. Well, maybe I can…

 

Avoid his donkey sauce. It’s contagious.

I am pleased to say I couldn’t have been more wrong. It has quickly become one of my favorites, and I eagerly await each new installment.

For whom is this series a good match?

This reader knows who Wil Wheaton is. They were a fan of Labyrinth or A Wrinkle in Time as kids. They once pretended a broomstick was a bow-staff to fight off invaders in their kitchen. They were the wildly imaginative sort who made up elaborate backstories for playing house.

“Ok, so, we’re living in a land of sand dunes made up of beetle shells, and the only thing we can eat is alien grapefruit that makes us extremely gassy! I’ll be the mom slash astrologer!”

This reader is smart. They love the fantasy of far-flung stories whispered on the echoes of the ether, and they want these stories to speak to their intelligence.  They don’t want their history dumbed-down, and they want it researched or well-conceptualized.  

This reader loves Game of Thrones, but often thinks to themselves: why aren’t there more musical numbers?

Needless to say, this reader loves to laugh. They also may be prone to speaking for their dog and/or cat. Preferably with a ridiculous voice. (FYI, my dog, Montana Wildhack, absolutely sounds like the porn star she is. She’s also really into ass work. “Listen! Billy Pigrim has come…UNSTUCK in…we’re canines, fill in the blank.)

What’s the series?

note the goat.

The Blurb: (from the first book, Hounded

Atticus O’Sullivan, last of the Druids, lives peacefully in Arizona, running an occult bookshop and shape-shifting in his spare time to hunt with his Irish wolfhound. His neighbors and customers think that this handsome, tattooed Irish dude is about twenty-one years old—when in actuality, he’s twenty-one centuries old. Not to mention: He draws his power from the earth, possesses a sharp wit, and wields an even sharper magical sword known as Fragarach, the Answerer.

Unfortunately, a very angry Celtic god wants that sword, and he’s hounded Atticus for centuries. Now the determined deity has tracked him down, and Atticus will need all his power—plus the help of a seductive goddess of death, his vampire and werewolf team of attorneys, a bartender possessed by a Hindu witch, and some good old-fashioned luck of the Irish—to kick some Celtic arse and deliver himself from evil.

Why I love it:

The thing about this series that I probably love the most is that, in most UF/Fantasy, it’s all about the ascendency of good over evil. That trope gets OLD. Ultimate good and ultimate evil cannot possibly be everything there is in the world. This series deals beautifully in the gray areas. Not everyone is all one thing. Atticus has admittedly done horrible things in his long life, and he acknowledges this, and does his level-best to move beyond that, and works really hard to be better. 

Beyond the gray areas, there are so many things to love about The Iron Druid Chronicles. It’s hilarious. Uproarious, even. My favorite character in the series isn’t even human, it’s Atticus’s dog Oberon. Yes, a talking dog is my favorite character in an entire series filled to fatness with lovable and intriguing characters.

But what about the action, right?

The action is so well-penned that you could almost believe author Kevin Hearne has some experience wielding a magic sword against demi-gods. At the very least, he had a broomstick bow-staff. It never falls. The building scenes in The Iron Druid Chronicles are so seamlessly complected with the more actionable interests of the plot, that it creates a tapestry of a story arc that lays like the finest kilim.

Also, this series has also been the source of two of my favorite quotes of the entire year.

salami

This is full of truth.

shatteredThis series may not be a romance, but if that’s not the most romantic fucking thing I’ve heard in a decade, I don’t know what is.

I adore that the love of this series is something my husband and I share, and I think this could be true of many friends/couples. In fact, every time there’s a new one released, the man and I start bribing one another as to who gets to read it first. As I’m the owner of the ladyflower, and the chief cook, I tend to win.

The Iron Druid Chronicles is the kind of series that brings people together to talk about at the end of the day, over a pint or cup of tea. (Incidentally, Atticus owned a bookstore/tea shop where he sold things like “mobili-tea” to people. I wonder if he also had “infertili-tea”? I like non-hormonal alternatives.;))

As for me and mine, my PSM and I have discussed this series at great length, and it was one of the series of which I used to throw her off the cliff of audiobook love–okmore like–audiobook obsession.

The audiobook for this series, narrated by Luke Daniels is so stupidly good, it makes me want to drop the mic for him. It’s absolutely a case where the perfect book found its way into the voice of the perfect actor, and I absolutely cannot imagine the two separated. His Oberon, sweet Flying Spaghetti Monster, his Oberon, holy fuck.

Below the .gif are two different samples of his Oberon. The first is from Hounded, the second is from Shattered. It’s sort of wonderful to see how the character has evolved and changed over the course of the series. Luke Daniels recognizes that, and makes no apologies for it. As we continually do what it is we’re best at, we improve, we evolve, and so do the products of strengths. As an actor/singer, I know that my voice is definitely different from that of ten years ago. I am still a mezzo-soprano, and still have all my octaves, but I know that as I’ve aged, my upper register isn’t the same. And I really believe my alto tones, which used to be less-than, have steadily improved. Likewise, I think you can really see a beautiful growth in Luke’s work.

and…

absolutely a five star series and a two thumbs up read.

The recipe inspired by the series:

ok, so, OBERON, ahhhh, Oberon. Sweet puppy loves his meat–especially sausage–and in the latter part of the series, he decides he’s going to write a standard. This standard will be The Book of Five Meats.  I knew that I needed to make:

The Sandwich of Five Meats(loaf).

AKA, the best meatloaf and gravy sandwich you’ve ever eaten. It features several favorites from the series, such as bangers, ale, and bacon. And all of the ingredients are available at Trader Joe’s, save the rolls, which are Rhodes.

The Sandwich of Five Meats(loaf) The Sandwich of Five Meats(loaf) The Sandwich of Five Meats(loaf) The Sandwich of Five Meats(loaf)

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The Sandwich of Five Meats(loaf).

by Cat Bowen

Prep Time: 45 minutes-1 hour total

Cook Time: 15 minutes (if you cook the gr

Keywords: bake entree

Ingredients

    for the meatloaf sliders

    • 1 lb 85/15 ground beef
    • 3 Irish Bangers (TJs) or 3 Pork Sausage links
    • 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
    • 1 tbsp chopped garlic
    • 1 egg
    • 3/4 cup rolled oats
    • 1/3 cup sour cream
    • 3 tbsp HP sauce
    • 1 tbsp ketchup
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp black pepper
    • 1 tsp crushed red pepper
    • pancetta or prosciutto for topping

    for the gravy

    • 1/3 cup bacon fat (about 6 slices worth of rendered fat)
    • 2 tbsp butter
    • 4 tbsp flour
    • 2 cups of veal (or beef) stock
    • 1 cup dark, malty beer (think a Brown ale or Chimay Tripel)
    • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
    • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
    • 3-4 dashes Worchestershire sauce
    • 12 oz sliced mushrooms
    • salt and pepper

    toppings

    • crispy capiccola (just heat it in the skillet)
    • sunny side up egg
    • sturdy lettuce
    • chopped red onion

    Instructions

    for the meatloaf

    Preheat oven to 375

    spray a muffin tin with nonstick spray, set aside

    slice prosciutto into 14 squares

    combine all ingredients in a large bowl, save prosciutto, and work together with your hands

    place evenly in 14 muffin indents

    top each with a piece of prosciutto

    bake 15-20 minutes or until center is 145F

    for the gravy

    heat the bacon fat and butter on high heat, it will JUST begin to smoke

    add mushrooms and stir/cook until browned

    toss in flour and stir

    pour in remaining ingredients, slowly and stir until thickened and smooth. (save the mushrooms.)

    AVENGERS! ASSEMBLE!!

    I think it’s easiest to have the sandwich go as pictured.

    Bun

    gravy

    sliders

    egg

    crispy capiccola

    onion

    lettuce

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    Really? Reptiles?

    I read a lot of motivational blogs. I can’t possibly begin to explain all the whys of it. I don’t often feel a real lack of motivation, save for when it comes to folding the laundry, or cleaning up crumbs…again. I’m also pretty cynical. I do my best to temper my “really? REALLY?” face, but more often than not, I just don’t get it.

    My best guess is that the desire to read these blogs is the same desire that has me picking up romance novels over and over again. I don’t want to be cynical. I don’t want my name to become the charactonym referring to “cynical white girl who smiles a lot and makes dirty jokes.” I’d rather just be “wild woman who smiles a lot and loves the phrase ‘turtle-fucker’,” or something.  (This is because of the book Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal by Christopher Moore. That book definitely features a turtle-fucker.)

    Anyways, quite the ambagious route to my point. However, if you read this blog with any sort of regularity, you’ll know already that’s how I do. Lately, I’ve been following some blogs that are more my style. They’re what I’d call “honesty blogs.” They’re not all tea and roses and One Direction music. You don’t get the feeling they’re super squeaky motivational with say, a secret meth habit or addiction to vegetable porn. They’re real. They’re more “cold-coffee-reheated-in-a-microwave-and-David-Ramirez-on-iTunes-played-on-their-iphone-in-a-bowl-because they-forgot-their-speaker-at-home-in-the-bathroom.”

    I like that. Breakfast to Bed is in no way 100% honest. I hide a LOT of my shit from you scamps. However, I like to think I don’t gussy up my words or ever pretend like I have it all together. Because I don’t. It is very cathartic for me to come on here and write about my struggle with depression or my addiction to sugar and eye-rolling romance novels.  There are days I come on here, and I feel like I could be the banner carrier for poor life decisions–not entirely related to the fact that I’m on a first-name basis with more than six local bakery owners.

    I struggle daily with my self-image, some days more than others. Most days I still feel like a fat girl who is just posing as someone who does ridiculous things like lifting heavy shit or voluntarily drinking water as a beverage not served with scotch.

    But my blog? You scamps don’t judge me based on my appearance or my mad freestyle rap skills. You judge me on the content of my posts. That’s AWESOME.  However, if you feel like judging me on anything other than my posts, please don’t let it be my freestyle rap skills. I may have exaggerated my prowess just a touch.

    Though, I’m sure, if I practiced, I could be like, a non-racist Eminem or Macklemore…with boobs.

    While I go work on my street cred, (for a Brooklyn mom, this means I’m going to go to the park and hand out non-organic treats, or wear a shirt that reads “Gluten is my homeboy!”) please, make this INSANE cheesecake.

    I know, I know, I said on Instagram, “down with pumpkin! up with skirts!” and I’m still keeping 50% of this sentiment alive and well. But I couldn’t resist making a pumpkin cheesecake for Thanksgiving. I also couldn’t leave well enough alone. Why make a boring old pumpkin cheesecake, when I could make THE MOST INSANE CHEESECAKE KNOWN TO HUMANKIND?!!?? Why, indeed.

    I give you, the insaneomgpleasejumpinmymouth

    Pumpkin Cheesecake with Cranberry-Citrus Compote

    more simply,

    Cranberry Pumpkin Cheesecake

    cranberry pumpkin cheesecake

    cranberry pumpkin cheesecake cranberry pumpkin cheesecake

    Cranberry Pumpkin Cheesecake

    by Cat Bowen

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook Time: 1 hour cook 2 hours cool

    Keywords: bake dessert cake

    Ingredients (1 cheesecake)

      for the crust

      • 1 1/2 cups crushed salted pecans or other nuts
      • 2 tbsp light brown sugar
      • 1 stick melted butter

      for the compote

      • 1, 12 oz bag of fresh cranberries
      • the juice of 3 mandarin oranges or clementines
      • the zest from 3 mandarin oranges or clementines
      • 1/3 cup sugar

      for the cheesecake

      • 3, 8oz packages of cream cheese, softened
      • 3 large eggs plus 2 yolks
      • 1, 15 oz can of pumpkin puree
      • 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
      • 1 tsp cinnamon
      • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
      • 1/8 tsp mace or allspice
      • 4 tbsp flour or g-free flour blend
      • 1 tsp vanilla extract
      • 1/2 tsp bourbon extract (optional)

      Instructions

      Preheat oven to 350

      prepare the crust

      crush nuts to a powder in a food processor,

      add melted butter

      mash into the bottom of buttered 9″ springform pan

      bake for 5 minutes or until you really start smelling the nuts

      prepare the compote

      add all compote ingredients into a saucepan and cook on medium low until berries start to pop. Remove from heat and set aside

      prepare the cheesecake

      in a mixer, combine cream cheese and sugar on high

      whip until air starts to lighten the mixture

      add eggs and vanilla

      whip another minute

      slowly sift in dry ingredients

      pour into prepared crust

      bake for 1 hour in a bain marie. (wrap bottom of pan heavily with foil and set inside a larger pan filled with water.)

      remove from oven and waterbath and chill 2 or more hours

      top with compote

      powdered sugar optional

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      Body Shots at the White House

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      I Want You to Feel My Influence.

      Klout, the online scoring thing of social media, apparently thinks I’m influential in “bacon”. How does one influence someone about bacon? Is it a peer pressure thing? Do I carry around bacon bits in my purse and convince you to eat some? Do I convince you to use bacon fat as lip balm? (it’s like … Read more…