It's A Keeper: Leftovers Magic with Special Fried Rice


It's A Keeper: Leftovers Magic with Special Fried RiceWhat to do with leftover veggies from making the Cowboy Hash? Fried rice, of course. Since I am currently in the Rachael Ray school of cooking (meaning I buy all her cookbooks, watch 30 Minute Meals, and subscribe to her magazine), I know that she often says that she often provides a cooking method, not just a recipe. One such method can be found in her Special Fried Rice, which is the perfect place to throw the extra veggies from the fridge at the end of the week. She also has a great Funky Fried Rice recipe in 30 Minute Meals, both of which use the same basic method.

I used my leftover bacon, green bell peppers, mushrooms, and sugar snap peas from the week. I also skipped the seasonings for the rice (the garlic and ginger) and used Kikkoman Fried Rice seasoning from the grocery store. Otherwise, I followed the cooking method from the recipe and was darn happy with my results.

Here's the recipe, with my comments in brackets:

2 3/4 cups water
1 1/2 cups white rice
3 tablespoons vegetable or wok oil, 3 turns of the pan
2 eggs, beaten
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 inches fresh ginger, minced or grated
1/2 cup shredded carrots, available in pouches in produce section, a couple of handfuls
1 small red bell pepper, diced
4 scallions, thinly sliced on an angle
1/2 cup frozen peas
1/3 cup Tamari, dark aged soy sauce

Bring water to a boil. Add rice, reduce heat, cover and cook over medium low heat until tender, 15 to 18 minutes. Spread rice out on a cookie sheet to quick cool it. [I used my rice cooker, which is so much easier. Then I put the rice on a plate and stuck it in the fridge while I chopped the veggies, cooked the bacon, and cooked the other stuff.]

Heat a wok, wok shaped skillet or large nonstick skillet over high heat. [If you don't have a wok, you should get one! I use this one from Calphalon that is hard anodized so it is nonstick. I swear the fried rice and stir-frys turn out better from a wok than a skillet, but it could be psychological.] Add oil to the pan. [I cooked the bacon first and just used that oil to cook the egg in.] Add egg to hot oil and break into small bits as it scrambles. When eggs are scrambled, add garlic and ginger to the pan. Add carrots, pepper, scallions to the pan and quick stir-fry veggies 2 minutes. Add rice to the pan and combine with veggies. Fry rice with veggies 2 or 3 minutes. Add peas and soy sauce to the rice and stir fry 1 minute more, then serve.

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Title: Greens Keepers - Lotion

"It puts the lotion on it's skin." Inspired by Silence of the Lambs

Title: My Sister's Keeper Movie Review

http://www.mannythemovieguy.com

Director Nick Cassavetes returns with his screenwriting partner from The Notebook, Jeremy Leven, for My Sisters Keeper. The film is a shameless tearjerker that will make you cry, but believe me, you will not feel guilty from doing so.
Cassavetes smartly chose to frame My Sisters Keeper as a character-driven study. If he allowed the materials decidedly melodramatic nature rear its ugly head, then the film would have just been a Lifetime Movie Channel special. Instead, My Sisters Keeper is definitely a keeper and a great counterprogramming for those who wish to escape the Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen crowd.
Based on the beloved novel by Jodi Picoult, the film posits a thought-provoking question: if one of your children is dying and is in need of a rare bone marrow match, would you order a doctor to make you a new child designed to help the sick one?
Thats the predicament that mom Sara Fitzgerald finds herself in. Played with headstrong conviction by Cameron Diaz, Sara, together with her husband Brian (Jason Patric in an understated but memorable performance), decide to conceive another child through genetic engineering in order to save their two-year-old daughter Kate. Anna will be Kates savior.
The narrative goes back and forth between past and present and interweaves family recollections by each character. Kate as a teenager is played by the amazing Sofia Vassilieva from the hit show Medium. She has a special bond with her sister Anna, played with charming ferocity by Abigail Breslin (Little Miss Sunshine). Completing the family is the long-neglected brother Jesse (Evan Ellingson).
My Sisters Keeper also explores the issue of how medical catastrophes can make or break a family. So what happens when Anna, now 11, decides she no longer wants to help her sister? Seeking medical emancipation, she hires her own lawyer, Campbell Alexander (Alec Baldwin). Thus, setting forth a court case that divides the family and could leave Kates rapidly failing body in the hands of fate.
From the opening scenes to the closing credits, Breslin anchors the film. The child actress can go from dramatic scene to a lighthearted moment without missing a beat. Her opening narration about being a baby born not from love but by design pulls you right into the movie.
Vassilieva gives heart and compassion to her dying daughter role. Her Kate is not a weakling but a teenager who loves life and is even given a chance to fall in love with fellow patient Taylor (Thomas Dekker). The actress is so motivated she even let the production shave her hair for the chemotherapy scenes.
But the real revelation is Diaz. Ive long suspected that she has an inner drama queen waiting to come out. The actress has always excelled in the few dramatic roles shes starred in such as The Gangs of New York and Vanilla Sky. In My Sisters Keeper, her character quits being a lawyer only to find herself back into the courtroom to defend her family. Watch Diaz effectively mix pathos and anger while questioning her own daughter Anna.
If I make the film sound like its a slash-your-wrist depressing drama, please forgive me. There are many funny moments in the movie to counterbalance its heavy emotional scenes. Baldwins character and his dog named Judge add some much-needed comic relief, as well as the amusing banters between the Fitzgerald siblings.
Im strongly recommending My Sisters Keeper not only to the fans of the book, but to moviegoers who want to escape the noisy, tedious sounds of summer blockbusters. The film is a surprisingly sweet offering that will challenge your own perceptions about family love, death and dying, and the true meaning of healing.
And for that, My Sisters Keeper gets 3 family bond kisses
MINOR SPOILER ALERT: The film veers away from the books original ending, and I particularly enjoy this decision. If the filmmakers stuck with Picoults conclusion, then the movie would end on a melodramatic note and waste the time you invested in the characters.






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