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And so, our Yuletide dinner/lunch/something passed, and it was worth the effort. ^_^ Roast goose as the star, sprinkled with a bit of salt and pepper, and a few cloves of smoked garlic inside. Going along with it:

- Cumberland chipolata sausages, wrapped in applewood & chestnut smoked bacon
- Brussels sprouts (we both adore them =:)
- Anya potatoes
- baby parsnips
- stuffing made of ground pork, shiitake, preserved Chinese vegetable mix, garlic
- red cabbage boiled with balsamic vinegar, sugar, and pepper (I forgot the cloves =:P)
- leeks in a white sauce spiced with pepper, oyster sauce, garlic
- gravy flavored with a stock cube, oyster sauce, rum, sugar, goose fat, and cabbage water
- accompanied by a 2010 Chateauneuf du Pâpe

It was good. ^_^ Regrettably, perhaps, my cooking is seldom photogenic, so you'll just have to believe me. =:)

If you have a Flickr Pro account, you can extend your subscription for three months free, just by visiting their holiday gift page. No strings!

If you're looking at a higher-level camera (around £2k/$3k), the D800E is a particularly appealing option - essentially, the same as the mainline D800, but with a modified filtering system that effectively removes the anti-aliasing found in virtually all cameras. That renders it potentially prone to Moiré effects, but with the benefit of enhanced resolution. For wildlife and landscape photographers, it's a strong choice, as those scenarios won't give rise to such effects - otherwise, you may have to put in extra effort to avoid such. Either version remains a fine option, with a 36MP full frame sensor that puts pressure on the quality of the lenses, and excellent high ISO performance, coupled with the flagship D4's AF unit. But what effect does the intentional lack of anti-aliasing actually have? Imaging Resource took the time to compare it against a number of competitors, with images throughout. (And, if you don't mind reviews in video form, here's one that's enjoyably presented by the good people of DigitalRev, over in Hong Kong)

So, as you see, it's time to kick back. Finally. ^_^ I'm intentionally suspending the diet until Jan 2 2013, though I shan't be going entirely crazy. =:) Still, it was rather nice to enjoy some delivered pizza on Friday.

It'll all also be a great excuse to get the slowcooker heated up again. ^_^ I've picked up a nice topside cut, which seems like it'll go brilliantly with some of Bath Ales' wonderful Festivity in cooking (seriously, if you're anywhere they'll deliver bottles or 5l microcasks of their wares, I must recommend Festivity in particular. Everything else they make is good, certainly, but Festivity's such an uncommonly good beer - and in microcask form, it's still a live beer, too!), and later on, I'm tempted to go for a couple lamb shanks, to braise slowly in the old remnants of some nice red wine, plus a good dose of garlic and rosemary. That might seem a little clichéd, but, oh yes: simmer it away for a few hours in that, and the meat'll fall off the bone with a gentle tap. So easy. ^_^

From the composer of the soundtrack to World of Goo, you can now find the soundtrack to Little Inferno over here, completely free, as MP3 and FLAC.

With all the ingenuity and resourcefulness hereabouts, I really can't believe nobody knows where to look to have the boots featured in this SL shot brought into reality. Someone knows where to look, I'm sure of it. ^_^

If you're in the UK, and travel by train any amount, I ought to point out the existence of the Network Railcard. It's only useful for the SE region - west to Didcot, north to Bedford & Kings Lynn (inc. Cambridge), south & east to the coast - but offers ⅓ off, with no special qualifiers regarding age or student status.

Rowan Atkinson says, "I can also confirm that there will be a return of Blackadder. This February, all the main cast returning."

Anyway, enough of all that. I hope everyone's having a good time, whatever you're celebrating. ^_^ In our case, pretty much just Yule - the end of the darkest of days, and the return of the light, to be marked by feasting and drinking. Really, can you argue with that?
That looks a fantastic meal! Merry Christmas-type thing!
Thanks. ^_^ I admit, I could've cooked the goose a little less - I should've checked it earlier on. Still, it was as richly flavored as you could wish for, let alone all the accompaniments. =:9

I hope your festivities have been proceeding in jolly style. ^_^ (And so what's going on with Clara, mm?)
I am not entirely sure how I feel about the Snowmen yet! There were interesting bits and spectacularly crappy bits.
What didn't appeal to you? I admit, the visual quality of the ice-governess looked rather inferior to the show's usual standards. On the other paw, there were some lovely bits in the direction, like the ascent up the spiral staircase.

I'd say I thoroughly enjoyed the characters, whilst the plot itself was simply there. Of course, that's all personal perceptions - I loved last year's, whilst some couldn't abide it. ^_^ (I do wish Bill Bryson's role had been a bit longer, though!)

Overall, a good episode. Interesting new arrangement of the theme, too!
That's a very interesting dinner shot!....

Happy New Yeeer! :D
Mmm, even though it's an entirely different Christmas supper than what I'm used to, it's sounds totally scrumptious! You surely know your cooking :D

I've done my research into rail travel in the UK, and until 26 I'm sorted with the aid of the 16-25 Railcard (1/3 off). Sadly, I don't think Network Railcard is avaiable for where I live, which is annoying as I'd definetely make use of it. Trains are so expensive.

Blackadder? Yes! I'm a real sucker for that and can't wait to see a new release. That's an awesome Christmas gift :D

And last but not least - thanks for the wishes! Hoping you're having a fun-filled time as well. Stay warm ^^
Well, I'll freely admit I ought to've been more reserved in how long the goose was cooked - it was still wonderful meat, but should've been a bit on the rare side. Still, it certainly all worked out in the end. ^_^ Oh, the richness of the goose, in such harmony with those chipolatas and that exquisite bacon! And parsnips are such a delight. I really ought to use them more often - tasty vegetables, and cheap, too!

So, what was your feast? ^_^ Did you make it? Are you a wiz in the kitchen?

Indeed, outside of the Network Railcard area, there don't seem to be any cards with universal availability - just the 16-25, and Senior, or if you've got an anklebiter in tow, the Friends & Family. Although, I recall the Student card is available regardless of age.. pity it doesn't include University staff. =XD

As Red Dwarf demonstrated so well, when a cast has that special chemistry, it doesn't matter that they've gained a few years - it's all so damned much fun. ^_^ Any idea if they're planning another series?

Unfortunately, I'm sort of having to stay warm - picked up the housemate's plague a couple days ago, and had to retire for the night before midnight, wrapping myself up. *sigh* Seems marginally better today, thankfully, with the aid of some good sleep - off a bit after midnight, up for an hour or so at 5.30am, then awake a bit after noon. (What I need is one of those all-in-one espresso machines, where you literally just press a button, and the beans are ground, and the right amount of water run through. Ideally it could froth the milk and deliver it on a Roomba too, to avoid that pesky need to get out of bed)

But yesterday did go well, regardless. ^_^ I gave the housemate a bottle of Grey Goose, and a 25-year old Glenglassaugh, so we spent a fun hour or two comparing Grey Goose, 42 Below, and Żubrówka (Krystal, I think), all with enjoyably different characteristics. Shrek was an enjoyable diversion, but it was Room on the Broom which really caught me in its magic - so utterly charming, as well as a delight to look at. And, of course, the Doctor, yay! So, what on earth is the deal with Clara, I wonder?
I've only eaten goose once in my life...can't say it was a bad, although it seemed bizarre. Should experience it more, though, it's a fun alternative to chick chick. My most groundbreaking discovery since moving into the UK is beef, no two ways about that :D

When it comes to Christmas cooking, that's usually my mom's field. When I had more time I would cook pierogies for us, but since last year I've not had the time to fiddle pastry and filling. Shame! In general, I do cook at home, to which Avon can testify. Sometimes it's passable, sometimes the deer finds it all too foreign :P

Rail travel can be a nasty surprise here, especially on longer routes. Short-distance travel ain't bad, but then again I'm not feeling the burn yet as I still have my 16-25 Railcard. The clock's ticking away, however...

Not sure if there's any talk regarding a new series of Red Dwarf. I've watched a few episodes recently so a new round of fun would be most welcome.

Awwr, too bad you got the dreaded winter plague :( Although there is something like a remedy that I can recommend, and that of course is booze. Coupled with raspberry or mint tea with honey it can do wonders. Naturally, it works neat as well, which you've had the chance to try, I see ;) Ever had mead before? Last time I brought some over it proved most popular, same for Żubrówka ^^
Mmmm, that looks/sounds like a very nice dinner. :)

Good luck with the boots, too! I have no idea, but hopefully someone will.

n our case, pretty much just Yule - the end of the darkest of days, and the return of the light, to be marked by feasting and drinking. Really, can you argue with that?

No. :)