Friday, 30 September 2011

"First Page" taught me a little something.

This week my blog is about a documentary film called “First Page” which depicts modern day operations within the New York Times. You can catch this movie at Cinematheque which is located in the heart of the exchange.

This documentary demonstrates some challenges modern journalism faces especially within the New York Times context. The documentary also illustrates the growing demand for online journalism and how social media such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter play a significant role today in disseminating information. The documentary uses a case study that compares the Watergate scandal of the 1970’s with a video posted to YouTube by WikiLeaks that depicts US military negligence. In both cases there was information valuable and shocking to the citizenry about their countries war efforts overseas. In the case of Watergate scandal, the New York Times received documents portraying the Nixon administration negatively. The YouTube video posted by WikiLeaks also had negative connotations; however the medium of printed press wasn’t required in order for the message to reach the public. This aspect of the movie tended to be one of the main themes as it explained the changing roles of gatekeepers within the mass media. This changing landscape of modern media outlets especially within the print industry became clearer after I watched this film.   

I experienced the movie as entertainment rather than education. Although I did learn much about the NYTimes operations in general; the movie was produced the in a manner that left me smiling and laughing. The film featured a reporter named David Carr, a once drug addict turned into a highly respected reporter. This in itself was intriguing as I always appreciate a good underdog story. The movie portrayed the daily life of the NYTimes employees as being fast paced and exciting. This I believe contributed to the entertainment value of the movie as I was on the edge of my seat at times wondering what would David Carr say next.

In my opinion this documentary film was produced as a marketing tool to engage people and humanize the NYTimes. Personally, I have been to the NYTimes web site more often this past week than ever before in my life.  I find their website clear and easy to maneuver when comparing it with other online newspapers and journals. The NYTimes app for Blackberry is free only for the major headlines and stories. If you want the full app you have to subscribe and in return will have unlimited access to all of the NYTimes.

I would recommend this movie to anybody interested in modern day print media. I would also recommend this movie to anyone curious about the current state of mass media and globalization. I give this movie 3/5 stars.  

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Curry in a Hurry

I’ve been told before that curry is only good when it is cooked right. This I believe can be said about a lot of things especially when it comes to food. However the curry I made with Chef Shaun Ursall last week was not too bad to say the least. Curry is the sort of dish that requires little money and minimum preparation. Curry can also be cooked in bulk so you can have lots of leftovers to freeze for later on when you know you’ll be busy and looking for something to heat up after a long day. We were fortunate to have some of the ingredients already in our possession; however this should end up feeding about 10 hungry people costing no more than 4 dollars per dish. Here is a list of ingredients we chose for our curry, remember this is just a guideline and you should feel free to ad whatever you like.
Ingredients (makes approximately 6 litres)
1 Eggplant
1 Whole chicken (pre cooked, spiced with rosemary and dill)
1 Red and green pepper
10 Red potatoes
1 cup of peas
6 Roma tomatoes
3 Carrots
2 cups of mushrooms
1 Large Spanish onion
6 Cloves of garlic
1 L of chicken stock (use whatever you have ex vegetable or beef is fine)
1 can of Coconut milk
Dollop of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
¼ cup of yellow curry powder
1 tablespoon of red curry paste
The Procedure (cooking time approx 1hour)
Start by chopping your vegetables into sizes that you feel comfortable eating. Most men I have noticed like large coarse chunks while women tend to enjoy smaller pieces. (Know who you’re cooking for). Once this is all done start taking the chicken apart for its meat, I suggest saving the bones and skin for chicken stock because it contributes so much flavor to other meals you will make in the future. Once all your prep is done start off by sautéing the onions and mushroom in a large sauce pan. Once these have started to brown it is now time to add other vegetables saving tomatoes, peas, carrots and peppers for last. Let this cook for approximately 10 minutes before you add your chicken stock, coconut milk, yellow curry, curry paste and chicken pieces. I should also add that mincing your garlic as fine as you can allows the garlic to become a part of the sauce and will add some serious flavor. Cook for another 10 minutes or so before adding the rest of your veggies; Add salt and pepper to taste and allow everything to cook together for another 10-15 minutes.
The nice thing about this recipe is that you can eat it like a soup and enjoy a baguette along with it or you can cook up some rice or pasta and use the curry as a sauce. It’s whatever you prefer. I hope you find this recipe useful and that you continue to experiment with recipes and cooking; it’s not only more economical but also an easy way to be a hit at a party or function

Friday, 16 September 2011

Teemu Salami just got Big City!

Many restaurants use social media in order to promote their business. Twitter is another medium of communication available for individuals as well as business’s and in many cases can be interconnected. Since I’m new to twitter and blogging I have decided to follow three specific Twitter accounts related to food which is the purpose of my blog. I am following Chef Alex who is head chef and owner of 7 ¼ Bistro located in south Osborne. Everytime I’ve been there I left extremely satisfied. Buccacino’s, I served there for over a year and they have contests and menu updates through Twitter. I am also following Winnipeg_Food on Twitter. I can’t exactly pinpoint what Winnipeg_Food is all about yet however I thought I would give it a shot because I’m learning the Twitter universe. I believe that it’s important for me to inform you that I was skeptical about joining Twitter at first, and let you know that now that I am on Twitter I’ve really had a change of heart and am appreciating all the neat people/things I can connect with.
On the topic of food I would like to inform my readers that I have BIG plans for this blog. I discussed with my friend Shaun Ursall last night about our agenda and it looks like we’re going to be serving up some tasty dishes. Here is a list of what you can expect from us in the future.
Canadian style pea soup
Pulled Pork
Spaghetti Sauce
I do want to add that we made a very nice curry dish last night and I will be posting pictures and blogging about that as soon as Shaun sends them to me. For those of you who aren’t aware of who Shaun Ursall is he was head chef and manager at Bonfire Bistro on Corydon in the River Heights area for the past 4 years and is an extremely talented chef. I am very thrilled to have Shaun on board and would like to give him a shout out for the good times and delicious eats.

Friday, 9 September 2011

Cooking With Shaun Ursall

Shaun Ursall, a local Winnipeg celebrity and a dear friend of mine decided that it would be a good idea to make five large lasagna’s. We decided Friday would be appropriate and that we would purchase our ingredients from a few bulk grocery distributors. Being a young man who enjoys eating delicious wholesome food this was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up.

The budget required to make five large lasagna’s was approximately fifty bucks each. The ingredients we went with were as follows

Eggplant, spinach, ground beef, ground pork, onion, garlic, fresh basil, tomato sauce, ricotta, Parmesan, mozzarella cheese’s and pre-cooked lasagna pasta.

The fun thing about making lasagna’s is that it’s easy simple and affordable. You can use your creative intuition and switch up ingredients as you are basically just making layers of goodness. We experimented, and no two lasagna’s turned out the same. 

Making food in bulk is handy for busy individuals as it is using your time wisely as well as being economical for the poorer student. I now have enough lasagna to last me until the Jet’s home opener that I’m sure will be an occasion that will call for good food and drink.