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October 2010

October 20, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: Red, err...Magenta Velvet Cake Batter

red velvet cake batter

I am experimenting with Red Velvet Cake this week and fell in love with this color. So much so I hated to bake it. More soon...

October 08, 2010

The Saddest Swag: DIY Swag for BlogHer Food '10 Pity Party

Swag-bhf10pp Yesterday, we drank a little lot and made the saddest swag bag.Today we conjure up the swag to go in it. Go grab your swag bag and let's get started. (Mine? Um, printer didn't, migraine did, can't find card for camera. Pity me.)

There are two ways of going about this, depending on your level of piteousness.

  • If you are alone and pitiful, the first set of options are for you.
  • If you have someone who is sympathetic to your BHF10PP plight, there are some thoughts at the end that might net you extra bling.

First, the universal options. 

  • Gadgets Reach in the very back of your gadgets drawer and try to identify things by feel. When you encounter a gizmo you can't identify, close yor eyes and slip it into the bag. Repeat until you run out of unidentifiable items or decide you have enough sadSwag.
  • Cookbook Obscure your vision temporarily - put on/take off glasses, smear a little dish soap on lenses, squint, whatever works - and go to your cookbook shelf. Stand at a distance where you can not read titles. Scan books and be amazed at how many you know without seeing words, right up until you see one that you can't place at all. Put that in your swag bag. Repeat a time or two.
  • Snacks Here is where we get truly pitiful. You know the stuff in the back of the cabinet/fridge? The things you can't see easily? (See where I am going with this? Getting scared yet?) Without looking, reach into the back of the cabinet and see what small items are hidden there. Stuff a few in your bag. Repeat with liquor cabinet but don't put it in the bag, start drinking it! The refrigerator may hold more treats but it is an advanced sadSwag topic and I leave it to your discretion.
  • Gift Certificates Get a small plastic bag, preferably one without any fancy zippers, too upscale for this. Reach into your change jar, pocket, wherever your loose cash lives. Grab a handful, put it in the container and slip into swag bag. This is your cash replacement for a gift certificate. If it's not much, use it to buy a tiny indulgence like a small amount of very good chocolate.
  • Got an Amazon Wish List? Go to your wish list page and see how many items are on it. Mine has 95. That's pathetic. (Actually, what is realy pathetic is that I have half a dozen more wish lists; apparently I want lots of stuff.) Now go to and let it pick a number, then hop back to your wish list and buy that thing.

If you hang out with someone who has taken pity on your piteousness, it's time for the big guns: pitySwag. Note that this swag may be of a high enough quality to make you not so pitiable, so talk about it with discretion lest we decide to no longer pity you.

You know best how to manipulate convince ask your friend for favors, so go with your strengths. Sweet-talking, tears, promises of sexual favors, whatever works. A couple of basic points to help you along:

  • You saved at least a thousand bucks by attending #BHF10PP instead of BlogHer Food. (In fact, maybe you saved enough to buy two items off your wish list if you are shopping for yourself.) You deserve at least a small percentage of what you saved as a reward.
  • Reinforcing staying at home instead of going to conferences could save a LOT of money in the long run. The blingier the swag, the greater the reinforcement.

Once you have a bag of sadSwag, hang onto it until the close of #BHF10PP and we can all break into ours together. Also, virtual swag tomorrow. Last call for donations!

Lest you feel like you are missing out on some insanely great swag by being at BHF10PP instead of BlogHer Food, don't. I asked a friend what was in the bag and she said "olive oil, snacks, chocolate, water bottle" - which is pretty much what is strewn across the kitchen counter I need to clean. And by strewn, I mean ground into the countertop until it is a permanent part of the surface that no amount of bleach and scrubbing will remove. I am sure there is more in the BHF bags, but it's not like the first yeat at IFBC when the bag was worth double the price of the conference.

What's going in your saddest swag bag?

October 07, 2010

The Saddest Swag: DIY BlogHer Food '10 Pity Party Swag Bags


One of the high points of food writing conferences is the swag. Oh sure, they may say they are there for the educational sessions but you know what they are really after: cookbooks nd gadgets and treats, oh my!

Well, we food writers are nothing if not resourceful and creative so why not make your own darned swag bag? After all, you can give yourself gifts; you're good enough, you're smart enough, and doggone it, people like You!

So, DIY swag bag it is. I can do that.

But wait! What's that you say? If you make it yourself, there are no surprises. Pitiful! The reveal is half the fun. This DIY thing without surprises - truly piteous.

Well, fear not brave BHF10PPers, I even have that part covered. But not yet. Tomorrow.

First, you need to make your BlogHer Food '10 Pity Party swag bag.

Continue reading "The Saddest Swag: DIY BlogHer Food '10 Pity Party Swag Bags" »

Words, Words, Words... Let's Start with Foodie (extended)

Update: Suggestions for new words will be accepted until Monday, Oct 11th at midnight. Voting will begin on Tuesday the 12th.

44027839v1_240x240_Front_Color-AshGrey As a writer, I have the privilege of making up words and shoving them into books as if they belong there. I do this knowing that it gives the word a certain veritas to make it to the printed page; as a tyke in a bookshop said, "It MUST be a real word, it's in a book!"

Okay, the truth is this. When I heard this kid at the store, someoneElse and I had just been discussing terms we made up for a book we were writing and I cringed at the power authors were being handed. Now I embrace the ability to create (or reuse) a word that encapsulates an idea beautifully and set it loose in the world. 

Words like fruffle - a cross between fluffy and ruffled, coined for a very fruffly furling; Or entanglement - our term for what someoneElse and I are to each other.

Cute words for cute things. Who could object?

Other words float in from elsewhere and are not necessarily as universally welcomed. Words like...

Continue reading "Words, Words, Words... Let's Start with Foodie (extended)" »

October 04, 2010

A New Look

Finally rolled out the new design and while I have beaten on it for many, many months I am sure it will have broken bits. If you find any of them, please let me know.

There are a few things not yet done but they will filter out in the next few days. Until then, I'd say more but I really, really need a drink.

October 01, 2010

New Twitter Fixes: Remove Who to Follow and More!

UPDATE (October 30th)

Some people are reporting that the AdBlock Plus fixes aren't working for them any more. It seems to be people using Firefox 4.0b6, which appears to have known compatibility issues with ABP - the joys of using a beta 0 and I'm currently looking for a workaround. If you're a geek with this configuration and want to help, let me know.

UPDATE (October 29th)

Twitter has renamed the WTF (Who To Follow) DIV again so you need to update your CSS/AdBlock filters.

  • CSS - add .user-rec-component to your CSS file
  • Adblock - Add a filter for

Also, the Who to Follow that pops up on someone else's page, after you follow them:

  • CSS - add .user-rec-dropdown.profile-action to your CSS file
  • Adblock - Add a filter for

If I have missed any bits, or if they change something, let me know and I'll get the updates here. I am going to reorganize this mess soon and break it up into individual bits for each browser so it's easier for the non-geeks to follow (sorry, the word makes me cringe a bit now). Soon.

   ~       ~       ~       ~       ~       ~       ~       ~       ~       ~

The silly lovely people at twitter finally let me have #newtwitter (that is the new twitter web interface for those of you who think twitter is silly) and it is...different. (Look at me, being all diplomatic and stuff!) Feature rich, in the best "It must be a feature, it is certainly not a benefit." sense. Screen hog, promoted trends, blah, blah.

Yeah, whatever. We know what to do with that noise, don't we?

Continue reading "New Twitter Fixes: Remove Who to Follow and More!" »

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