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Posts Tagged 'military'

Creamed Chipped Beef on Toast

Sometimes you just have to try something that causes other people to gag at the thought. I have fried spam, eaten vienna sausages and corned beef hash. This is something many of my older relatives who were in the army or navy gagged at so for today I have to try something that my Mom used to love and that people in the military used to refer to as S.O.S [shit on a shingle] — creamed chipped beef on toast.

Now the first thing that is a little weird about it if you approach it from a chef’s standpoint is that you make a roux of butter, flour and milk then you add slices of dried beef [that just sounds too generic and processed to be good for you]. Going so far as to make a roux and then adding processed beef product doesn’t sound like a good idea, but if it got our troops through a couple of world wars I figure I’ve got to give it a shot.

It’s not very popular anymore and you’ll only find it in a few diners in the northeast so you’ll either have to make it from scratch or buy the packaged frozen variety that Stouffer’s makes. I chose the Stouffer’s and decided to boil it in the bag because I figured that’s probably how most of our military men had it prepared.

It oddly had a lot of salt per serving, but I felt it could use a little more. I found it to be an oddly enjoyable comfort food. Which means that it’s high in fat and calories and not the best thing to eat, but I eat a healthy breakfast and dinner so I slide a little bit. I liked the creaminess of it and really didn’t notice the meat too much. It’s one of the few times that a store bought processed roux was actually thick and not watery.

This is actually a dish that I think needs to have a comeback. I don’t think I need to be an evangelist for this dish, but it’s something I think a lot of people will enjoy. I suppose it would sell better if you could put organic or artisanal in front of it on a menu, but something like this isn’t meant to be organic and I think I can understand why my Mom loved the dish so much.

New Face For Fort Mason?

Originally a U.S. Army post built in late 1800’s for coastal defense during the Civil War [good job guys!], Fort Mason expanded in 1912 to include docks and storage for shipping overseas soldiers and equipment for wars. It hasn’t really changed too much since then since it was finally decommission and handed over to the National Parks Service in the 1970’s.

While there have been some minor improvements, it’s still pretty much storage facilities except for the few rooms that can be rented out for events, Greens, The Blue Bear School of Music and the Italian American Museum. I’m sure there’s more there, but I just haven’t come across it other than attending a meeting of the San Francisco Aquarium Society a few months ago and attending traffic school there several years ago.

The buildings are starting to look rather worn out though and something needs to be done to bring these 13 acres of land to be more useful to the city other than a parking place for Off-The-Grid food trucks every Friday night. Now Fort Mason Revisited has asked 20 design firms to come up with designs to revamp the place and I say good for them. Yes, there’s lots of historical nature to the place having been used by the military during all the wars up to and including the Korean War, but it now needs a big change to serve the people of San Francisco.

Of the 20 firms selected, they have until June 15 to say whether or not they’re in and then three of the firms will be selected to start work this summer. There’s no telling what will come of the place, but I hoping for the best. Wouldn’t it be great if we could have a place that’s built off of modern designs with added solar and wind power to electrify the place. The city is also in the process of trying to extend the F line to Fort Mason through an unused rail tunnel in upper Fort Mason. I think that would be a good idea and I believe they should retain some of the nautical themes that have been in place so it coincides with all the boats docked next to it.

Autism vs. The iPad: Part II

As you read before we had a little mishap with the iPad and it was replaced for free by Apple. The day it was replaced we searched for a case that would keep it protected no matter want and we decided on the Survivor by Griffin Technology. I watched their video of their case with the iPhone and searched for reviews and figured that if the case was considered military grade in the US and UK it could hold up to a moderately autistic child.

Well I was right and I’m glad now. In the three days it took to get the case we’ve been keeping a watchful eye on our little spud to make sure she didn’t throw it or bash it again. Well, it turns out that our over protectiveness only encouraged her to do so. Nothing really terrible, but if we moved toward her in a preemptive strike to keep her from damaging it she knew and would try and toss it.

Luckily we have quick hands and got it before any damage occurred. Now about the case. It’s really good. It’s a polycarbonate housing that’s strong and I liked it because it took me awhile to get it apart so her getting it out of the case will be difficult. The polycarbonate case is covered with a silicon/teflon outer soft cover with flaps covering all of the access ports. This would be great in the sands of Iraq, but what I liked most is that it muted the sound a bit which our daughter like to turn up full blast. This isn’t a problem when you hold it in your hands, but when it’s flat on a table the sound ricochets off the table and is amplified by about 30db making it very loud and annoying whenever there’s an elmo video playing.

Watch the video below. It’s a great case and I found it online for $39.95. It’s a bit thicker than the iPad or iPhone, but it’s worth it for the practically hermetic seal it gives to the iPad. While for some people $499 isn’t too high a price to have to replace, if you have a young kid you’ll want a strong case to protect it so that you can keep your iPad for as long as possible.

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