Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Where are you Springtime?

While Spring is set to officially arrive later today we still haven't had any Spring-like weather. While the snow is gone it has still been cold outside. I look forward to sunnier and warmer days ahead. 

The Story of My Life...

Monday, March 19, 2018

The Jellies

The Jellies I 
David Golden
Pencil crayon, crayons, charcoal, tissue & encaustic on canvas (2008/2018)
12" x 16"

The Jellies II
David Golden
Photograph & encaustic on balsa wood panel (2018)
6" x 9" 

Way back in 2008, when Mr.T and I moved into the house we live in now, in the wake of the move I found myself obsessed with images of jellyfish. There was something about their perceived lightness, how they floated along with ocean currents that appealed to me, that reflected my mood at the time and I began drawing them in my sketchbooks. Because of the medium I was using at the time I couldn't do the images I had in my head justice on paper, but my recent explorations with encaustic found me resurrecting some of these images, as the encaustic medium gave the images some of the transparency and lightness I couldn't achieve back then. 

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Pie Day

It has been a rough couple of day for me dealing with some persistent health issues so this morning I needed to do something special so I decided to make a pecan pie. This time I decided to use a recipe I had never tried for pecan pie crust from Angela over at Oh She Glows and it actually turned out really good. While a couple of days late for actual Pie Day (March 14) I was craving something Spring-like and pecan pie always reminds me of Spring-like days. Maybe making a Spring-like pie will help Spring come a little sooner. 

Pecan Pie Crust
  • 1 Cup Rolled Oats
  • 2 Cups Pecans
  • 2 Tablespoons Sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons Flax 
  • 1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
  • ½ Teaspoon Salt
  • ¼ Cup Brown Rice Syrup/Honey
  • 1 Tablespoon Margarine
1.Grease a 9-inch pie dish very well and preheat the oven to 350˚.
In a blender, process your oats into a very fine flour.
If you don’t think your machine can get the oats fine enough, then I suggest buying oat flour from Bulk Barn or other store.
The oat flour needs to be very fine in this crust, not flaky or chunky. 
2.In a food processor, add 2 cups pecans and process until it starts to clump and oils start to release (about 35 secs), but don’t make pecan butter either.
You should be able to make a ball with the pecan dough. 
3.Melt earth balance with brown rice syrup for about 30 secs in microwave, stir.
Transfer clumpy pecan mixture into a large bowl and mix with the rest of the ingredients.
Using your hands, squeeze the dough over and over to combine very well.
You should be able to form a ball with it.
If it's too dry add a bit more oil. 
4.Spoon the pecan dough onto pie dish and smooth out evenly.
Press down firmly with fingers to form a crust, bringing it up along the sides.
Press as firmly as you can.
Prick base with fork 12-13 times.
Pre-bake at 350˚ for 9-12 minutes, watching closely so it doesn't burn.
Remove and cool for 10 mins.

Pecan Pie
  • 1 9" Pie Crust
  • 8 Ounces Dates, Chopped
  • 6 Ounces Pecans, Halved
  • 3 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
  • 3 Tablespoons Corn Syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon Grand Marnier
  • ½ Teaspoon Vanilla
1.Preheat oven to 350˚.
Prick the bottom and sides of the pie crust and bake for about 10 minutes until lightly browned.
Set aside to cool for 10 minutes. 
2.In a large bowl, toss together the remaining ingredients until well combined.
Transfer the mixture to the pre-baked pie crust, pressing down the filling with the back of spoon. 
3.Bake for 25-30 minutes until filling is lightly browned and crust is golden.
Let cool for 10 minutes before serving warm or at room temperature.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

A Saturday Walk

Wall-E Recharges Gif by cory-corpse

This morning while still cold was brighter than the past couple of days. After making our way to Kensington Market to pick up our dry goods and veggies for the week Mr.T and I decided to go for a walk. We walked north to Bloor Street then east to the Winners on Bloor across from the Colonnade. From there we continued east to Yonge Street where we walked north to the Canadian Tire where we found a light rope to replace the one that had been broken by racoons in our backyard. 

From the Canadian Tire we decided to walk back through Yorkville stopping at the Whole Foods before heading west on Lowther Avenue to Warmer then back to Bloor Street. It was the perfect day for a nice long walk allowing us to soak up some much needed Vitamin D. 

Friday, March 16, 2018

A Blustery Friday

Related image
This morning Mr.T had a day off from work and so after walking across town through some really cold, windy weather he joined me at yoga with Mr.Da. Because it was only the three of us we were able to work closely together and focus on some tight areas in all of our bodies. After yoga Mr.T and I headed over to Staples so I could pick up some printer ink for my new printer. While I haven't really printed a lot, what I did print for my encaustic work, was filled with colour and the last couple of prints were starting to show a lack of colour. The HP printer I bought uses a black ink cartridge and a colour ink cartridge and while neither is yet empty I wanted to ensure I would get better quality images. 

After Staples we walked along Dundas Street, ducking into The Grange to see if there was anything interesting to eat and to warm up a little. There is a food court inside but nothing really looked that good so we continued walking south to Queen Street and then east along Queen. After crossing Spadina I remembered there was a cute little Vietnamese fish place on the north side of the street and we decided to try it out. Located on the northeast corner of Queen and Cameron Street, Fresh Off the Boat is a tiny little place with a really nice casual feel. There is banquette seating along the western wall and a few tables and a bar with a few seats located under their two menus. Separated into Land and Sea the Land menu featured meat dishes in a Vietnamese style while the Sea menu had a Vietnamese take on some standard fish and seafood dishes. I opted for their shrimp sandwich, which was served on a Vietnamese bun with a tomato sauce and basil and pan-fried shrimp while Mr.T had their grilled Mahi Mahi with salad. The counter service was quick and attentive and the food really delicious. It was the perfect lunch for a cold, blustery day.  

Wednesday, March 14, 2018


Can Crusher

While making dinner today I found myself putting some plastic containers into our kitchen blue bin and began thinking there has to be a better way. So much of the recyclable material we put into our blue bins takes up so much space. Even after breaking down boxes and cardboard so much of our recyclable waste takes up so much space. What we need is some kind of a system that compacts everything in our homes into tiny cubes of recyclable waste that could then be collected. I know this would mean separating types of recycling, but wouldn't this help make the system so much more streamlined in the end. Allowing for smaller containers that would take up less space? 
 Remember these can crushers from years ago? What we need is something like this that would help reduce waste and safe space. 

Dolores was ready for the Rapture...

Updated Cancer Boy

Cancer Boy
David Golden
Photograph, text & encaustic on balsa wood
6" x 9" (2005/2018)

One of the most wonderful things about encaustic as an art medium is that you can go back and continue to manipulate the medium. Working on my cancer boy image I wasn't really happy with the outcome and had tried a couple of things including a small "c" in the right corner in red wax that I just didn't like. Because I wasn't happy with it I was unsure hoe to continue and left it alone for a couple of weeks. Rolling it around in my mind the image of DaVinci's Measure of Man kept creeping into my mind and this morning I erased the small red "C" in the upper right corner and replaced it with a large hand drawn "C" that surrounded the figure referencing DaVinci's piece. It is more in line with what I had in mind and I really like how the "C", which was drawn on rice paper, coloured with crayons and then mounted overtop of the rest of the piece with medium frames the body and the text creating a little more visual cohesion. 

Monday, March 12, 2018

Szechwan Dinner

Vegan Kung Pao Tofu

Because I have been craving some hot and spicy food I decided tonight to make a home version of Kung Pao Tofu. I didn't have any hoisin sauce so I substituted some of the sweet bean paste I bought yesterday at Nations and it turned out really delicious. This I served with some steamed rice and some pan-fried spinach with chilli-garlic sauce for a really yummy dinner. 

Kung Pao Tofu

  • 1 Block Firm Tofu , 
  • 1 Tablespoon Peanut/Olive Oil
  • 1 Clove Garlic , 
  • 1 Tablespoon Ginger , 
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper, 
  • 1 Tablespoon Rice Wine/Sherry
  • 5 Dried Hot Red Peppers
  • 1 Carrot 
  • ½ Cup Hoisin Sauce
  • ¼ Cup Soy Sauce
  • 1 Teaspoon Sambal Oelek (chili and garlic sauce)
  • 1 Teaspoon Spicy Bean Paste (Korean hot sauce)
  • ¼ Cup Rice Wine Vinegar
  • ¼ Cup Sugar/Honey (optional)
  • 2 Scallions, 
  • ¼ Cup Peanuts/Cashews
  • 1 Tablespoon Sesame Seeds
  • ¼ Teaspoon Arrowroot
1.Squeeze water out of the tofu.
The more water you get out, the more the tofu will absorb the flavours of the sauce.
Slice the tofu into small bite-sized pieces.
Dry with paper towels and reserve. 
2.Whisk together the hoisin sauce, soy sauce, sambal oelek, spicy bean paste, rice wine vinegar and honey in a mixing bowl.
Adjust the sauce to your taste by adding more hot sauce if you want the sauce to be hotter, and less sugar to take away some sweetness. 
3.Slice the garlic, scallions (reserve the green tops) and chilis and reserve.
Cut the carrots and peppers into bite-size pieces so that they will cook evenly. 
4.In a pan sauté the peanuts and a couple of whole dried red peppers without oil until browned and reserve.
Heat the peanut oil and sauté the garlic and peppers until lightly browned, add the scallions. Add the cooking sherry until the garlic and onions begin to brown. 
5.Add the tofu and fry in the peanut oil until golden brown.
Now add the sauce, a little at a time, until you get the desired coating.
Mix the arrowroot or cornstarch with a little water and add to the sauce to thicken.
Let the mixture simmer for a few minutes to reduce the sauce and thicken it. 
6.For the final touch, sprinkle with peanuts or cashew nuts.
Garnish with green onions and the toasted red peppers.
Serve over jasmine rice and enjoy!