Sunday Best: Jan. 31, 2016
“A Guy Like Me.”
A great article from the man behind the fists himself. It’s a sobering, first-person account of the media storm surrounding Coyote-turned-IceCap enforcer John Scott and the NHL All-Star game. It also showcases the consequences of the fan vote that led to his All-Star captain status, and the league’s response to the decision.
In my opinion, the NHL owes John for drumming up any publicity for the game this weekend—no one would have given two, er, excreta otherwise. People love a good underdog story. Also, stop taking the All-Star game so seriously and just give the guy a chance. He’s not some dumb kid off the street—treat him like the humble and hard-working big league player he worked his way up to become. #SCOTT2016
Update: They won!
Also, this moment was a game highlight.
John Scott’s inclusion in the All-Star Game is all worth it now pic.twitter.com/gzTLsAD6V0
— Mt. February Lodgezo (@davelozo) January 31, 2016
Cooking sous vide.
Three of my lovely friends chipped in and bought me a Sansaire sous vide immersion circulator for my birthday last year—thanks Emily, Ryan, and JT! It’s definitely one the best/coolest gifts I’ve ever received. Sous vide is a method of cooking where you seal food in airtight plastic bags, then place it in a water bath that is precisely regulated by the immersion circulator. This results in slowly and evenly heated food that is perfectly cooked on the inside, without overcooking the outer layers. It also helps retain moisture.
I finally got a chance to try it out with Emily, and we made pork chops (one with Dijon, and the other marinated with a Bourbon BBQ sauce). We tossed them in the water bath, clipped to the sides (MacGyver-style with hair sectioning clips) to ensure that they stayed submerged. We let them cook at 70°C for about an hour, for well done chops. Then, we took them out and threw them on the pan for a for a quick sear. The result was deliciously tender pork chops with a nice crisp finish on the outside. We also made an egg sous vide, which had an extraordinarily creamy yolk.
My next experiment will be attempting a Sous Vide Steak with Red Wine Sauce and Smashed Potatoes.
Haskayne Hour: Adventures in City-Building.
An email from my old alma mater caught my eye a few months ago. Haskayne Hour, a breakfast lecture, would be hosting its next session with Ken King—President and CEO of the Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corporation (CSEC encompasses the Calgary Flames, Hitmen, Stampeders, and Roughnecks). The discussion would revolve around whether or not sports contributed to a city and, if so, in what way. Also on the roster was Jyoti Gondek, Director of the Westman Centre for Real Estate Studies, bringing an academic perspective to the table. The purpose of Haskayne Hour is to bridge the gap between academic research and real world issues we face in business today.
It was a full house, and I think many of the attendees agreed that sports undeniably play a role in creating and uniting a community—as those of us around to witness the infamous 2003-04 Cup run can attest to. I still remember: 14 years old, sitting patiently at my friend Taylor’s as my friend Madeleine carefully traced out a giant flaming “C” on my back in Sharpie. We watched the first game against San Jose, a bunch of kids crowded around the TV in the living room. Every intermission, we ran outside in our bathing suits (it was an uncharacteristically warm May) and frantically waved our crudely drawn “Honk For the Flames” signs. It was rare that we didn’t receive a honk from passing cars.
Even last season’s brief playoff stint, I think, stirred up some familiar feelings among Calgarians. Thankfully, I moved on from covering myself in permanent marker, and simply resorted to joining throngs of other red jersey-suited revellers downtown.
They also touched on the CalgaryNEXT project, discussions regarding how to best redevelop or historicize the existing ‘Dome, and a small hint about something soccer fans in Calgary might get very excited about…
A Chopped-style cook-off.
One of our clients, Brakemen Foundation, is a staunch supporter of Brown Bagging 4 Calgary’s Kids and often holds special events to benefit the charity. This year, they held their 2nd Annual Celebrity Chef Cook-Off at Calgary Petroleum Club—which I helped develop the creative advertising concept for. Last-minute passes allowed me the opportunity to attend, and it was an experience unlike any other. Aside from hockey and football, the only thing I watch on TV is Food Network!
The chefs were presented with three mystery ingredients that they would need to incorporate into their dishes, with a fourth surprise ingredient introduced later on in the round. The nondescript brown paper bags ended up containing Cheese Whiz, daikon (an Asian radish), and hot peppers. The surprise ingredient was announced with about 15 minutes left in the cook-off, and was a nod to Brakemen’s Stampede roots: Cowboy Kettle Corn!
We chatted with the sous chef for Calgary Petroleum Club’s team after the competition, who let us have a taste of the leftover broth they’d prepared in the competition. Wow—these guys know what they’re doing. The ingredients were perfectly balanced, with layer after layer of flavour, along the perfect amount of acidity to tie it all together.
In the end, however, the Brakemen chefs defended their championship title for the second year running. And, even better, much money was raised for the kids who don’t have access to a healthy and nutritious lunch every day.
A nice day in the mountains.
One of my close friends, Emily, recently landed a job handling events at Nakiska Ski Resort. So, we packed up her things bright and early this morning, and hit the road to Kananaskis. The move was fairly easy, since she didn’t have too much stuff to bring, so we also took a quick jaunt out to Banff afterwards. We went to Park Distillery, where we took a tour of their distilling quarters before enjoying dinner in the restaurant.
(Did you know that Canadian laws prohibited distilleries and restaurants from co-existing in a single location until recently? We didn’t either, until our guide filled us in.)
Anyways, I hope to write a longer piece on our experience, so keep an eye out for that coming later this week!
Update: Check it out here!
Updates on last week’s Sunday Best items…
Consider me fully obsessed with The Honest Company. I decided to sign up for a free trial of their Essentials bundle so I can test out their Face + Body Lotion, Healing Balm, Multi-Surface Cleaner, and Hand Soap.
The Red Lobster Cheddar Bay Biscuit Mix was delicious. Surprisingly, I’ve only made and eaten one batch so far.
Lolita arrived on Wednesday. I’ve only had one free night to delve into it so far…but I was so captivated by it that I fought the drowsiness from my cold medicine for 32 whole pages (until, finally, my heavy eyelids betrayed me).