Cooking Adventures: Improv! And some geek stuff

Chicken and Pineapple Teriyaki

Last Thursday I took a few leftover ingredients and cooked a meal. Initially I was just going to cook the spaghetti and last chicken breast, then I started adding stuff. I first marinated the chicken breast in what was left of the teriyaki sauce. Then I threw it into a pan with was left of the diced peppers. Meanwhile, I just cooked the spaghetti. I was also having some diced pineapple when I had the impulse of throwing some of the chunks into the pan with the chicken and the peppers. I also added some chili powder.

Presto, chicken and pineapple teriyaki. Things learned? More pineapple and more chili next time. I also think a sauce would’ve helped the pasta.

Meanwhile, I got more sauces this week. A tomato marinara, a rose, a vindaloo and a tandoori sauce. I still have shrimp and I picked up some chicken breast from the store. This time I took bigger sauce bottles so I can have several servings. I’m going to delay a bit the idea of a stew since everyone is really pushing the idea of a crockpot and I haven’t decided if to get one (also I have no counter space to put it on).

Lemon Ricotta Pancakes from Vino Vin et Terrasse

On Saturday I went out with friends for brunch at Vino Vin et Terrase in NDG. We had a good time, and the food was great. I had the lemon ricotta pancakes, which were good – nothing extraordinary. The side of bacon sold me though. The bacon was thick, soft and caramelized. Tasted so good that I had to order some extra on the side. Missed my friends, I had not seem them in  while.

News on the geek front. I wanted to see TV and my PS3 inside my computer screen – which is a flatscreen TV. See, I used to be able to see and record (not at the same time) streams from the cable’s decodifier by plugging in a firewire cable in the back. That has been disabled for close to a couple of years since they pushed some update and permanently left those ports unresponsive.

I researched and found the Elgato EyeTV HD on the Apple Store. The customer reviews are mixed. It’s excellent, it’s a piece of crap, don’t ever buy this, it does what it says, works fine for me, it’s an expensive paperweight. Those are very dispairing reviews. I took a chance and got it. My initial goal with this was NOT recording – only watching it. Worked fine. I haven’t tried recording yet. The quality… well, if I maximize the window I can’t tell the difference between directly sending the signal into the TV and through this device in HD! So it’s very good. The sound drops in extreme so I have to rise the volume to very high levels to listen. Not a big issue unless I forget and click on anything else in the computer that makes a sound because it them deafens me.

I didn’t have a component video adapter for the PS3’s A/V multicast port. I wanted to see if I can get HD gaming from PS3 into a computer screen. I had to hunt for this cable on Sunday. Turns out most stores like Futureshop have gotten rid of their PS3 additional cables – only HDMI is being pushed from now on. I did find the cable on a Game Buzz store.

Montreal en Lumiere

Montreal pulled a fast one of me as I was coming back. There was a festival in full swing at Place-des-Arts, Montreal en Lumiere. I was so happy to see a festival. There was food, music, food, fireplaces set up to warm up and some even to cook, food, a ferris wheel and… did I mention there was food? I had a chocolate gauffre (waffle), a poutine and a wapiti sausage that I cooked on the fire.

Come on summer, hurry up…

The cable was a cool find and brings a bit more quality than usual RCA video, but not as crystal clear as direct HDMI. Additionally, there’s a few seconds of delay in the video/audio signal.

The problem in PS3 Games is that those seconds of delay easily get you killed in most games. My favorite racing game, Burnout Paradise, had my car turned into scrap metal by the time I had reacted or over-reacted to the scene. The quality is noticeably inferior to direct HDMI, but it’s nice to know I could record gaming footage if I wanted to.

As a bonus there’s an app for iPhone/iPad but it’s not free. I bought it. I can now watch TV on my iPad through the wifi. I don’t know how it would work through the internet yet. I don’t see myself using that too often outside – but I do love the idea of watching TV on a screen that I can carry to bed. It’s also nice to have some recording capability, although these days I prefer to get stuff via download.

No cooking on Sunday, I was tired. I got some Thai Express and instantly regret it. I could’ve cooked something a lot tastier than that. That also means today I had to eat out. Definitely cooking tonight.

That will do for now.

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