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Thursday, September 28, 2006

Last night's supper

My brother brought us a duck breast that his boss at the restaurant had given him and we had a wonderful meal of it last night. Tim cooked it following this recipe from The Dean & Deluca Cookbook

Magret de Canard with Apples and Maple (Quebec Style)

Although commonly misused, the French term magret refers strictly to the breast meat of the fattened Moulard duck but only if its liver has been used in the production of fois gras. The Moulard is a big duck, weighing up to 7 or 8 pounds dressed; it can easily serve 4 people.

2 tbsp rendered duck Fat or vegetable oil
1 magret (Moulard duck breast, about 2 pounds), cut into breast halves
2 tart cooking apples (such as Cortland, McIntosh or Spy), peeled, cored, and cut into ⅛ inch slices
3 large shallots, minced
1 bay leaf
1 tsp fresh thyme
salt and pepper to taste
½ cup apple cider vinegar
1 ⅓cups duck or chicken stock
½ cup pure maple syrup (or less, if a less sweetened dish is desired)
1 tbsp unsalted butter

Heat the duck fat in a heavy, 10 inch skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking. Add the breast halves and quickly brown it on both sides, about 5 minutes total.

Remove the breast halves to a plate and set aside. Sit in the apples, shallots, bay leaf, rhyme, salt, and pepper and cook, stirring for 3 minutes, or until lightly browned. Increase the heat to high, stir in the cider vinegar, and cook until the mixture is almost dry, about 3 minutes.

Add the stock and maple syrup and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, bring the liquid to a bare simmer, and add the breast halves and any accumulated juices. Braise the breast halves slowly for about 10 to 12 minutes, stirring it once with tongs, until it’s medium-rare. Remove the breast halves and the apples (use a slotted spoon) to plates and keep warm separately. Discard the bay leaf.

Over very high heat reduce the sauce until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Whisk in the butter. Season with salt and pepper.

Holding your knife at a 45º angle to the cutting board, slice the breast halves crosswise into 16 pieces. Place the apples on 4 serving plates, and top with the breast haves fanned over the apples. Spoon the sauce over and serve immediately.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Memories of a tomboy

Whenever I see the Tide commercial about grass stains, it makes me think of the time when we were kids and my brother gave me "tomboy lessons" ! He had me sliding in the grass, crawling through rusty air duct pipes and last but not least, peeing standing up!

Not that I needed lessons...

Easter 1976

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Another rejection

Via e-mail...

Je vous informe que, malheureusement, votre candidature pour le poste de technicien de laboratoire n’a pas été retenue.

Je vous souhaite donc la meilleure des chances dans votre recherche d’emploi et je confirme que votre c.v. sera conservé pour une durée de 3 mois dans notre base de données. Je vous invite, d’ailleurs, à consulter régulièrement la division carrière de notre site web pour toutes nouvelles opportunités d’emploi.

Bonne journée

That was from last week's interview at Methylgene. Anyhow, I didn't get a good vibe from the supervisor or some of the tasks involved (keeping the freezers frost-free was one of them.)

At least that was a rejection for an interview I actually had.

I got this letter from a company that I only sent my CV to. I didn't even apply to a job posting. And I swear I did not go to an interview! But apparently I made quite an impression!

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Weekend fun

Tim curled again on Saturday so I went hiking. We went to the Parc régional de la Forêt Ouareau near Chertsey, about an hour from the city. Very nice and to think, so close, yet I'd never been in that area before.

Unfortunately, it didn't even don on me to bring my camera so I was left to attempt a few shots with my phone.

Click on the link to Robbie's site, he's got a few better shots of the outing.

The boys came close to winning their third game, but close is no cigar.
But that meant going to our softball banquet that evening. Which was well worth it for the roast beef. And Tim won MVP male.

Sunday was uneventful, door sanding, wiring, painting, cleaning.

Oh yeah, Hang, the German border, left on Friday. The evil girl left an open package of Dubble Creme cookies which I've left in her room so hopefully they will go all mushy and gross so I won't be tempted to eat them! I don't think I'll be touching the Sugar Crisp cereal that she left either.

Another interview

Last Tuesday was pretty productive. I went to the passport office after I finally went to see Leona for her to so kindly sign my application. So many engineers in my acquaintance, yet so few of them actually part of the Order. But you can always count on a CA :)

Then in the pm I had an interview at Methylgene. No response from them yet either and I'm too chicken-s*** to call them.

Vacation continued

So how did I spend the rest of our official time off, let me think.
Tim was curling in Boucherville in the tournoi de la rentrée with Eric (his bro), Eric (his regular teammate) and Dave (no description necessary ;) )
So Cathy and I set out on our bikes for what was supposed to be a short ride but we ended up going all the way to Chambly, over 40k return, cos she said she was feeling good and wanted to take advantage of that fact. Unfortunately, that good feeling did not last. Cathy had quite some leg pain that evening, having much trouble climbing the stairs up to bed. These pregnant ladies just won't listen to you when you tell them to take it easy!
Yes, you read right, that means Tim's going to be an uncle! I'm not sure if that'll make me an aunt or not...I think Cathy's sisters Christina and Pamela might have exclusive claim to the title.

Anyhow, the boys won their first game and France and I went back ato see them play that evening, minus Eric the Bro as he was playing softball.

Capital I

Today is a wet miserable day but I got all fuzzy inside when I clicked on a link to an old Seasame Street Favourite...Capital I

Wednesday, September 13, 2006


So we had a combination work on the house/have fun week off. (I know, you're all saying, she's always off, but last week I had Tim to share it with!)

On Tuesday we rented a table planer to clean up the wainscotting from the kitchen. It was noisy (sorry neighbours) but certainly got the job done a lot quicker than my initial sanding with the palm sander. The whole job was much more expensive and time consuming than buying pre-made panels but the end result was well worth it. We used the boards to finish the landing to the basement. They are now primed and ready for a couple of coats of paint.

Wednesday we met up with Heidi in Ste-Adèle and biked up to Val David on Le P'tit Train du Nord. I really must enjoy biking (yes I do!) cos we got up at 6:30 that morning to go. After the 34 km ride, We had yummy panninis in St-Sauveur at the Brûlerie des Monts and then got some oatmeal cookies at Pagé's. Much to Heidi's dismay, they were all out of marbled rye bread.

Thursday and Friday we worked some more on the landing and then we went down to my parents' cottage via Plattsburgh for some R & R. We didn't find any great bargains this time. But the main reason for the trip was to go biking. We went to Saranac Lake and did the Otter Hollow Loop. Wicked fun! And I have the bruises to prove it too!

Monday, September 04, 2006

It's all over

Softball is over. 2 Fridays ago was our last game. We actually had a pretty good game against Montreal West even if we lost.

Dragon Boating is over. 2 Sundays ago was our last competition in Sherbrooke. Pretty dreadful weather but fun nonetheless.

The long weekend is over. But Tim's vacation is only beginning! We've been working on the landing to the basement and hopefully will take some time to have some fun at some point this week. I will have to fix the flat tire on my bike that I got today when I unavoidably ran over some glass on the bike path in Verdun.
Of course it had to happen when Tim was not at home to come and pick me up so I had to walk home. Luckily I wasn't so far so it only took me a half hour.

And where was said Tim? Out with a few of the boys to see "Beer Fest". Apparently it was quite funny. I'll take his word for it!

On Friday our German assistant border, Hang, arrived. It does not appear that she will stay with us for the year as she wants to share an appartment with students from here so she can get out and meet lots of people. Oh well.

And hopefully my bout with unemployment will be over soon...I had an interview at ED Foods last Thursday and I won't get an answer for another 2 weeks but it sounds promising. Everyone, keep your fingers crossed for me!