This is how they did it a very long time ago (-84 years to be more exact). Source.
Tuesday, 31 December 2013
Room for some sweets still? I've never been too eager on making any Christmas dishes myself (I let others do them for me for when I come over, hehe), apart from sweets. For New Year's I, as many others, like to eat something fresh and not really related to the season. But when it comes to the extras I prefer to still go for Christmas, as I do like the holiday scents an tastes, sweet and spicy.
Here's a recipe for gingerbread truffles, to serve with coffee for or after dessert or to place on the table among with the other sweets you've gathered around yourself for this time of the year. I'm sure you could get pretty awesome truffles by just adding gingerbread bits to a regular truffle batch, or by rolling truffles in gingerbread crumbs (>note to self: try). But these here are not that kind of truffles.
For about 18 pieces you'll need:
180 grams of almonds
2 tbs of honey
8 dates (or fewer, if you use very big ones)
Ginger bread spices
Grind the almonds in a mixer. They don't have to get as smooth as flour, keep a little texture. Add the honey, and then the dates one by one. (If you want to do a vegan version trade the honey into one spoon of agave, or just use about one or two dates more.)
The mix should be a rather fluffy, nutty crumble, that will stick together easily when you roll it into a ball. If you put in too many dates it will turn soggy, so check before adding the last ones. Put in the spices last and blend. I use 2 teaspoons of cinnamon and one each of ginger and clover. As I like cardamom a lot I put a teaspoon of that too.
Form into balls and roll them in a mix of cocoa and cinnamon (or if you so prefer, just either one).
Keep cold for an hour or two before serving, and if you for some reason are left with any over, store cold in a plastic box.
No food processor at home? If you use soft enough dates you can do this with just a hand mixer too, with pre-ground almonds (or almond flour). Or mash the dates with a fork for the hand-only version.
You can do several variations on these:
The obvious - cut into cubes instead of rolling them into balls, or form a roll and cut thin slices. Dust cinnamon or coconut sugar on.
The more created variations:
Press the dough out rather thin and use small gingerbread forms to cut out shapes.
Roll the truffles around a piece of dried apricot or dark chocolate.
Dip the gingerbread balls in melted chocolate, leave as they are or sprinkle chopped almonds, cinnamon or nonpareils on.
You can also bake these. Then they of course will no longer be truffles but turn in to sort-of-gingerbreads. The raw way would be to keep them in oven on low heat until they dry, some hours in just 40C. The inpatient way I'd go for is a very hot oven for just a minute or two.
Or, if you are among those who like gingerbread dough shut ike that, skip all rolling and just eat right out of the bowl!
PS. these are also healthy! And raw. Child-friendly sweets with no sugar. Haha!
Saturday, 28 December 2013
A little kitsch around the house isn't wrong, especially when it comes to cats!
a window with cat bottles in all colours in a row. Fun! And that meant someone had a lot of wine.
Did I already say I love Christmas holidays? Also the so called "days in between", as those are the ones you get to really take it easy after running around at relatives; read your books, burn your candles, eat your chocolate and marathon watch you series. And the kids play with their toys. (But I kind of broke my own suer-relaxation code and did a quick stop at the gym today - room for more sweets! And wine.)
Wednesday, 25 December 2013
And once you are taking it easy or partying or what it is that you prefer do, give a little thought to those who are working for our safety also during the holidays, policemen and hospital staff etc. And also those for our comfort; the ones that drive you home from your celebrations in the bus or the cab for example. I spent many Christmases in the harbour as the ships come and go every day so in this rainy weather I give a little extra thought to my former colleagues standing there right now as well. (And of course, those who are alone and not well and all that too - it always gets rather cheesy writing all that out in one multi-sentence, but you know what I mean).
Tuesday, 24 December 2013
Well you know me. I like it if it has pockets, or if it's on wheels. And, there's a third thing: jars. Jars are awesome because you can put stuff in them. Which is indeed what they are intended and were invented for (said with a Sherlock-ish voice).
You may recall me using jars as a packing for gifts, both edible and non-edible, some Christmases ago. Or the cookie gift jars; you can add the ingredients for a recipe in the jar, like cookies, and write the how-to on a card. The cookies can then, once baked, also be stored in the jars. This year I'll be making some of those go baking-jars as a present to families with kids, but also filling some up with dried fruit and chocolates. It's an easy gift in you are in a hurry, or if you don't know what else to give to someone who has everything. (*Last minute advice*)
I went over to the big furniture house from our western neighbour, because they have tie right kind of nice jars. My suggestion is to use jars of one litre, but they were out of those and only had small ones of 1,5L left. It's nice with big jars though. But they do eat a lot of stuff so be sure to get enough filling!
Sunday, 22 December 2013
I don't think I've even managed to keep an orchid alive and in bloom for this long, but the one in the countryside bathroom is still hanging in there and looking all nice. Sometimes when you look at flowers, like really look at them, it makes you rather quiet, thinking of how they are engineered and designed, so complex and so functional. Oh wow. (Once when I had a hangover I, for some reason, read about carrots and photosynthesis and it made me cry. I always try to avoid nature documentaries on lazy Sundays too because of the same reason.)
Have to confess that this is the second one in this room though, the first one got attacked by these small silvery evil white mini thingies and when I treated the orchid with pesticides all the flowers fell off. So this little baby gets sprayed with water and then I pat the flowers dry afterwards. Yes, I totally have the material to not only develop into crazy cat lady when older, but also become weird flower person. (There's a little way to go until Harold Smith though -for those of you who know your Twin Peaks. But really. I've never had an orchid drop it's flowers and then get new ones, what should one do in order for one to bloom again?)
And the light in the picture, which mostly is due to long exposure, reminds me that as from today we are going towards longer lighter times again! Something one never notices at this time of year since it is d-a-r-k (which is ok around Christmas I think, as there are lights and lanterns and glow everywhere anyway), but it is happening. The day today was calculated to last 5 hours and 49 minutes and tomorrow it will be 5:50 already. Part-ey.
I've had this terrible itch to cut bangs again, but I've been there many times before and have learned that although I love that style, the transition time of growing the hair out again is quite a pain in the derrière to go trough. So I didn't reach for the scissors. Instead I dug out my old little clip-on bang. It had lost a lot of color so I let it soak in a color mask for some hours; the shade turned out rather perfect. (Today however it had taken on a slightly purple undertone and did not blend in with my own hair that well anymore. Umm, I have no idea how that is even possible).
As it is Christmas and as the party was a more-is-more kind of one I went for red and green; lining my eyes with green eyeshadow (and black liner) and, of course, the lipstick was red. Lots of bling and some chopsticks and huge red flowers in my hair. Then it was jingle your bells all the way for the rest of the night!
Friday, 20 December 2013
The dress is called Astrid, from Vivien of Holloway. The rose earrings are old and I can't remember where I got them anymore...
Wednesday, 18 December 2013
Tuesday, 17 December 2013
Last Saturday we had our Yuletide Burlesque Revue that was planned and produced by The Ravishing Shangri-La Rubies, which is Tinker Bell and I. It was the first ever event we produced totally ourselves (even though Bittyfest three years back was our creation too, although backed up by Fullsteam). Apart from all the other things we have going on we put down a lot of time one this one too, an event which originally was thought of to be more of a club but turned into a whole night's show of spectacularity in the end. The last weeks before consisted of quite many working until 4am nights, but it was worth it and awesome and sold out a week in advance!
Considering that I perform burlesque weekly, and during this time of season several times a week, I post rather little about it here in the end! So this time I'll give you a mammoth post with lots of pics from our event. (Leaving the ones possibly nsfw out though.)
All pictures taken by Tuula Ylikorpi, unless else mentioned.
Pic by @tlairila
(pic from my Instagram @turrrbocherry)
Pic by Jari B.Miettinen
And then it's showtime!
Crazy-charleston! This is the duo act that we use the vintage kimonos in, that you could see a peek of before.
The students from our Showgirl school were our stage-kittens and assistans for the night. They're a d o r a b l e.
(Although, have to add because this is so weird; one girl who has missed practice a lot lately arrived 2,5 hours late without letting us now and when we afterwards calmly told her she should have called us, and that it won't be ok in the future to not follow schedule - especially not if the producer is someone else - she flipped ut, fucked us off on Facebook and wrote a post that she quit the group and then unfriended us. A bit of a whoah! But a very lovely bunch nonetheless.)
Gigi does a classic Lucia.
That ends like this.
Bettie's Russian fairytale.
And Lady Laverna's awesome Marilyn tribute.
Our showgirls also performed their agent number.
Olivia going flamenco.
Bent as a redneck reindeer. Seriously, I love this guy!
He got to play Santa as well.
Laverna singing with the singing presents.
Bettie Blackheart was also a Christmas tree... and totally fabulous underneath but perhaps you'll get to see that for ourselves some day.
My colleague and partner-in glitter Tinker Bell, or, for the night; Tinsel Belle.
Bent van der Bleu in the tsar's army, by Jari B.Miettinen.
I also managed to get a new act put together which I premiered there. Hello four am sewing!
(The tiger suit I had made by Tyra Therman though as I could not have managed to put that together myself.)
I really am so glad to be able to work with so many fabulous and great friends and performers (and photographers and light designers and all that)! But I am also very happy right not that this was the last show I'll do this year, the next one won't be until late January. Phew!
And now it's full Christmas mode on.