Friday, January 3, 2014

Hello, 2014!

Happy New Year everyone! Much as I predicted, we were all zonked out well before midnight. We awoke very briefly when someone let off fireworks at midnight. They woke Raelynn who instantly fell right back asleep in our bed. I found it funny that the Chinese will only let off a very few fireworks for the new year, but when it comes to the Chinese New Year, holy hell. These people just need to get a grip. It is INSANE the amount of noise. And it's constant. It does not stop until 2 or 3 in the morning. Then you get one asshat who lets off one of those big cannon boom ones at about 5 or 6am. I hate the person the absolute most.

So yeah, our New Year's Eve wasn't very eventful. But our New Year's Day sure was! I say this with a touch of sarcasm, because if you read my last post, you know who I was going to be forced to hang out with on the first day of the year. And if you're too much of a lazy cow to click the link, here's your spoiler: it was my in-laws. Oh, joy!

At least they came to our home and I was spared the hell of having to breathe in the vomitous fumes of their hovel. But I was not spared from MIL's cooking. To be fair though, it smelled far worse than it tasted. Let's discuss the meal, shall we?

Here's Raelynn getting ready to jack some more food from the plate closest to her. I thought it was potatoes, honestly. I took a bite and thought, "Oh GOD! She undercooked the potatoes! How do you fuck up frying slices of potatoes?!?" But then Jeremy informed me it was some other root vegetable. Not too bad. That brown thing on the left is some bamboo dish. It was better than it looked. In the bowl next to that? BARF! I could not stand to smell it or taste it. Just dreadful. To the right of that, it looks like spinach and I was happily enjoying it until I was told it was not spinach. My husband said it was olive tree leaves which sounds mystifying and interesting all in one. Actually, I was still enjoying this one after I was told it wasn't spinach. And finally, on the right, there's some meat. It was lamb, and I must give her credit because every other time she's cooked lamb, it has been chewy and gristly and therefore way up there on my puke-o-meter. But this time, it was so soft and delicious. I was also greatly amused that she used my dill AND rosemary on this! It was a very strange taste, but it wasn't bad.

There was also a whole steamed fish, which is MIL's signature dish. She never fucks that one up. And also not pictured, noodles, because in Chinese tradition to eat long noodles on one's birthday means you will have a long life. But she serves them plain. With no sauce. And then she was trying to put that soupy nasty thing from the bowl on my noodles and I snatched my bowl away with the quickness. I'd rather plain, boring noodles than for her to put something gross on top.

Here's my FIL posing for his birthday. He's mostly tolerable. Mostly. Of course, we know what he is capable of, don't we? See exhibit A, exhibit B, exhibit C, and exhibit D. At least it makes for great comic relief.

 Now it's time for cake. I have to tell you that cakes made in Chinese bakeries are just awful. They don't taste right. And my friend Andrea told me why. They don't use butter. They use oil because it is cheaper. OF COURSE THEY DO! Ugh! Not only that, but they also neglect to put enough sugar into it. So the cake itself is kind of dry and has little flavor. And the frosting is just this gloppy slime that has no sweetness to it. But Raelynn is happy with any cake. That giant piece was for FIL but Raelynn told him he couldn't have it. She told him he could have that small piece that's next to it. It was adorable.
MIL cuts up enormous pieces for everyone. I insisted on a small piece. I didn't even want it but I didn't want to be rude.
My husband decides it is far sexier to eat cake like this! LOL!
And now, I'd like you to avoid focusing on the zombie that is MIL and look at the cake. Something's different now. Can you tell?
Why, wasn't there just much more frosting on top of this? Yes, there was. That's because MIL, in her infinite non-wisdom decided, without consulting anyone mind you, not even her own husband, started SCRAPING the frosting off the top. Now, the cake was shitty to begin with. As was the frosting. But the frosting made the dryness of the flavorless cake easier to swallow. God, she really is a pill, isn't she?
Here's a better look at the cake after it was decapitated of frosting. Thankfully I wasn't very interested in eating this cake in the first place or I would have been severely pissed. She won't be allowed anywhere near the cake I'll make for my husband on his birthday in a little over a week. I'm making the same cake I made for Christmas. It's a chocolate lava cake made in the rice cooker. Yes, really!
 Now, I must tell you this has to be one of the best cakes I've ever made. It's so moist and so incredibly, insanely delicious. But don't let me convince you. My husband is not a cake person. He's not a sweet tooth like I am. He'll usually give something a taste and while he might enjoy it, he'll leave it up to Raelynn and me to polish it off. Not this cake. I'd also made fudge for Christmas. Jeremy said, "You can have the fudge. This cake is mine." He also demanded that I not take any for my coworkers. He became very territorial about the cake. I can't say I blame him.

If you want to make this cake for yourself (and you absolutely, TOTALLY should!) click here for the recipe from a great food blog. You will not regret it!

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