Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Paypal, Blogger, Cousin,

I've had a Paypal account for years, I rarely use it mind you, but once in a blue moon I have to - every time, I have to close my old account (or get them to) and open a new one. What a pain. I've been messing around with it all for the last half hour or so and all because I wanted to buy Matt a yukata. What is that you ask, its a Japanese men's lounging kimono. He's had one for a number of years which was given to him by a very good friend who, being a Marine at the time, was stationed in Japan for a while. He has used it as a robe, dressing gown, whatever you like, for years, but now it is getting a tad thin where he sits - and being Matt, fidgets. Nope, the guy doesn't come with it. I have still to go back and open a new Paypal account in order to buy it. Why they can't use Visa like anyone else I don't know. Interesting story this morning about or its parent Google being sued in order to get the name of a person blogging defamatory remarks about a model, Liskula Cohen. Click here for the story and video. I don't know if this court case will actually put a stop to such things, it does seem to me that Blogger and Google are something of a law unto themselves, but this time they had to divulge the information. Mind you there are some nasty people out there, Karen Miller just blogged about someone attacking her because she pointed out they were parked in a wheelchair spot and were perfectly 'able' and presumably had no sticker or plate. Luckily she managed to lock herself in her car before the person got to her. I was delighted, this morning, to get an email from a cousin I haven't heard from since 1987. She and her two sisters were brought up by my parents once they became orphaned. I didn't realise she lived in Portugal and was certainly there when we visited the country. If we'd known we could have visited. At the moment she and her sister live there, the third sister lives in the UK these days. She is the middle one of the three little girls here who were my bridesmaids in 1962. That is such a long time ago. Another newsletter from Eating Well and I just couldn't resist this recipe, it looks so delicious in the picture and of course the recipe contains chocolate, well cocoa. Swirled Cheesecake Brownies Makes 24 bars Ingredients Cheesecake topping 4 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel) ¼ cup sugar 1 large egg 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour 1 tablespoon nonfat plain yogurt ½ teaspoon vanilla extract Brownie layer ⅔ cup whole-wheat pastry flour ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder ¼ teaspoon salt 1 large egg 2 large egg whites or 4 teaspoons dried egg whites (see Ingredient note), reconstituted according to package directions 1 ¼ cups packed light brown sugar ¼ cup canola oil ¼ cup strong brewed (or prepared instant) coffee or black tea 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Coat a 7-by-11-inch brownie pan or baking pan with cooking spray. 2. To prepare topping: Place cream cheese in a small mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Add sugar and beat until smooth. Add egg, flour, yogurt and vanilla; beat until well blended. 3. To prepare brownie layer: Whisk whole-wheat flour, cocoa and salt in a bowl. Place egg, egg whites and brown sugar in a large bowl and beat with the electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Add oil, coffee (or tea) and vanilla; beat until well blended. Add the dry ingredients and beat on low speed just until well blended, stopping once to scrape down the sides. 4. Scrape about half of the brownie batter into the prepared pan. Slowly pour the topping evenly on top. Drop the remaining brownie batter in large dollops over the topping. Draw the tip of a sharp knife or skewer through the two batters to create a swirled effect. 5. Bake the brownies until the top is just firm to the touch, about 20 minutes. Let cool completely in the pan on a wire rack. Coat a knife with cooking spray and cut into 24 bars. The brownies will keep, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. (Alternatively, bake brownies in an 8 1/2-by-12 1/2 -inch foil pan, wrap well and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.) Bring to room temperature and cut into bars shortly before serving. Ingredient Note: Dried egg whites are convenient in recipes like this one because you don't have to figure out what to do with 4 egg yolks. Look for powdered brands like Just Whites in the baking aisle or natural-foods section or fresh pasteurized whites in the dairy case of most supermarkets. have a great day.

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