Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Whining, Anne McCaffery,

Doctors today. First for periodic diabetes check up and second for a pain I have had quite some time. Was X-rayed just before we went Whiningon vacation but apparently my back is fine and yet I have a pain which goes through my body just at the level of between my boobs to a corresponding level on my back, I reckon it feels as though someone has put a sword through my body, and didn’t take it out again. It also tends to hurt me all round at about bra fastener level. One of the first reactions last time I saw a doc was “shingles” but no, there is nothing like that. I think, not being an expert, that it could be muscular; if I flop down in a chair it “hurts” and if we are driving and hit a bump it “hurts” although funnily enough when I bowl it doesn’t bother me. So fingers crossed please that they figure out what the problem is.

Just reading a book ( a real book using bookmark) called The Dragon Writer which is a collection of reminiscences about Anne McCaffery. I have loved her books for a verAgent of Changey long time, but it sounds like she was a wonderful person. I would love to have met her. She was always very encouraging to beginning writers apparently and if she became a fan would follow your books for years. She would have loved Alex J. Cavenaugh’s  idea of the Insecure Writers Group by the sound of it and would have been a keen participant. I am also learning the names of some sci fi writers of whom I have never heard so I will have to follow up and read their work. Do you know the Liaden Universe? I had never heard of it but it sounds like a good series. Anne McCaffery certainly thought so. I figure if she thought so, I would too so I have just got Agent of Change for my Kindle.

I haven’t done much chocolaty lately, so here’s some truffles from Food and Drink.

Basic Chocolate Truffles

As a gift they are all the more precious because you made them yourself. As a treat to be shared after dinner with friends, they seem the ultimate decadence. Chocolate truffles are surprisingly easy to make. They can be flavoured with any kind of liqueur and rolled in different coatings. Serve them with coffee, glamorously presented as a truffle tree. But beware! Given their delicacy, the trees only last about three hours out of the
refrigerator before the chocolate starts to melt.

8 oz (250 g) bittersweet chocolate
1 oz (30 g) unsweetened chocolate
½ cup (125 mL) whipping cream
¼ cup (50 mL) unsalted butter
Cocoa for rolling

1. In a heavy pan on a low heat, melt chocolates, whipping cream and butter together, stirring occasionally. When melted, pour into a small bowl and cool mixture. Refrigerate for 2 hours or until mixture hardens.
2. Using a melon baller or a teaspoon, quickly form mixture into approximately ¾-inch (1.75-cm) rounds. Refrigerate until cold. Roll in cocoa or dip in chocolate. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

Orange Liqueur Truffles
Add ¼ cup (50 mL) Grand Marnier, Cointreau or Triple Sec to truffle mixture after it has melted. Stir in ¼ tsp (1 mL) grated orange rind to heighten orange flavour.
KahlĂșa Truffles
Add 3 tbsp (45 mL) KahlĂșa to truffle mixture after it has melted.
Rum Truffles
Add 3 tbsp (45 mL) rum to truffle mixture after it has melted.
Dark Chocolate Coated Truffles
Melt 8 oz (250 g) bittersweet chocolate in a heavy pot over low heat. Remove from heat. Place cold truffle on skewer or dipping fork, and swirl in chocolate to coat. Place on wax or parchment paper.
How to make a Truffle Tree
1. Insert pointed toothpicks into a styrofoam cone. Space toothpicks approximately 1-inch (2.5-cm) apart. Each toothpick should protrude about 1 1/4-inches (3-cm).
2. Push a truffle onto the end of each toothpick, starting at the base of the cone. Complete bottom row, then work your way up the cone.
3. Fill any gaps between truffles with candied violets.

Have a great day


  1. That's cool to think McCaffrey would've like the IWSG!

    1. From what I am reading she certainly would, she would have joined in wholeheartedly.

  2. Who doesn't like a good truffle? I know I do. I buy mine from See's Candies. I don't think I could make them. I'd end up making a big mess for the wife to clean up.

    1. I lurve truffles. I have made them but not for a long while.

  3. I hope the doctor finds out what's wrong.

    I used to love Anne McCaffrey and if I'd gotten down to Dragon Con several years back, I might've even met her.

    1. Yeah Diane, I thought of going to a dragon con in Atlanta once, I bet she was there.