Monday, February 11, 2013

From the Balcony, Canadian Polar Bears.

Snow 002Snow 001

The first two pictures were taken on Saturday after it had snowed all day on Friday. The third picture was on Sunday. We had a dense fog early in the morning which froze on the trees and made them look really pretty. The snow on the wall has melted though.

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I actually have 6 photos taken over the last couple of days, but I will spare you. Reports say this was the heaviest snow in one fall we have had in years. We were lucky compared with some areas such as the Maritimes which really got a pasting. Lots of people there, and on the eastern seaboard of the States, lost power. I haven’t been able to find a report on the total amount, but we believe it to have been a foot.

I didn’t like having to miss bowling on Friday, but the snow ploughs didn’t come round here til Saturday and Matt didn’t want to take the risk. There was a report that on the East Coast, Boston I think, they were threatening people with a $600 fine or a year in jail if they went out in the streets. Unbelievable. I gather it worked though, the streets are beautifully clear and the ban now lifted. We have a big parking lot behind our apartment building and occasionally, in the winter, they have to get everyone to move out so they can clear it completely. Trouble is, it still gets ice packed because it isn’t done at the time.  Can be dangerous, Matt slipped there some years ago and ended up in the hospital with spinal stenosis. Now we park underground.

Just came across an article regarding Canada’s management of its polaEU Polar Bears 20130210r bears. I hadn’t realised there was a big trade in polar bear parts. I knew the Inuits (eskimo peoples) killed the bears, but I naively thought that was just for themselves, not for international trade. There is to be a world vote on banning cross border sale and export of polar bear parts. I support that whole heartedly, although I do understand that the tradition with the Inuits goes back a long way and I am not sure what can be done to replace their custom. Canada is saying there is more threat from the environment than from hunting, true, but nevertheless killing for export is wrong, in my opinion.

I have been meaning to share this recipe for a day or two. It really looks wonderful and I just know it would taste great.

Ginger-Steamed Fish With Troy's Hana-Style Sauce

WebMD Recipe from

This shoyu-based sauce with fresh ginger, garlic and sesame is a Hana classic. We use reduced-sodium soy sauce to keep the sodium in check. Chef David Patterson prepares the dish with onaga, a red snapper only found in the Hawaiian waters; it’s tender, sweet and mild in flavour. We found that halibut and other white fish were also ginger_steamed_fishdelicious. Serve with steamed brown rice and a green papaya salad.

Serves 6


6 5-ounce portions striped bass, halibut or any flaky white fish

6 1/4-inch -thick slices peeled fresh ginger

1/4 cup peeled fresh ginger, minced

1/4 cup garlic, chopped

1/4 cup sesame seeds

2 tablespoons rapeseed oil, or canola oil

2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil

1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce

2-3  scallions, thinly sliced, for garnish


  1. To prepare fish: Bring 1 to 2 inches of water to a boil in a pot large enough to hold a two-tier bamboo steamer. Put a heatproof plate in each of the steamer baskets. Place 3 portions of fish on each plate with a slice of fresh ginger on top. Stack the baskets, cover and set over the boiling water. Steam the fish for 7 minutes per inch of thickness.
  2. To prepare sauce: Combine minced ginger, garlic and sesame seeds in a small bowl. Heat rapeseed (or canola) oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the ginger mixture and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 1 minute. Add sesame oil; allow the mixture to get hot. Add soy sauce (be careful, it will splatter a bit) and cook for 1 minute more.
  3. Transfer the fish to a deep platter. Discard the ginger slices. Pour the sauce over the fish and garnish with scallions.


If you don’t have a steamer, improvise by setting mugs upside down in a large pot and resting a large heatproof plate on top.

Have a great day



  1. We had sleet/snow yesterday afternoon and evening but nothing to compare with what was dumped on you across the Pond!

    Light drizzle/sleet this morning so its gradually clearing here.

    1. Even we got off lightly, some places got a lot more, somewhere out east got 3 ft. last night apparently.

  2. Polar bear parts? That's just wrong.

    Your snow looks gorgeous.

    1. It is wrong, but then any parts of any animal is wrong in my view, and yours too I am sure.

      Sadly it's raining today.

  3. It looks beautiful though. Just be careful if you have to go out.

    1. We did go out to the bowling alley, it was damned slippery not having been cleared. They said people had been parking there all night so it couldn't be cleared properly.