Jul 19 2012

Friends And Injuries

Category: Friends,VideosChrisM @ 7:06 am

On Tuesday evening, we invited DanS and Justin over for a meal and a bit of chill out time. With Justin due to escape Kazakhstan very soon, and Lara and the kids (as in the rest of DanS’s family) still away on a holiday, it seemed like a good time to fill up with food, talk, empty the cupboards of beer and drive and just spend a bit of time together without a bar’s sound system making conversation nigh on impossible without BSL 🙂
We decided upon burritos (I discovered that tortillas with food inside, wrapped up, can be called burritos, as not all burritos have a hard shell) as a) I wanted something tasty and b) everyone else is a lot less picky with their food. Given that we could take out pick from home cooked battered chicken, Heinz baked beans, cheese, peppers, chillis, tomatoes and of course a bit of ketchup and mayo, this seemed the easiest way for everyone to have exactly what they wanted for dinner. Justin was working late, so the rest of us ate and drank until it was time for Tim and Anna to be made ready for bed, at which point Justin arrived. Irina kindly fried up some more chicken, and we all sat round the table enjoying more food (and perhaps a little more alcohol 🙂 ).
Once the food was out of the way, the question of entertainment reared it’s head. I suggested the xbox, as it has been gathering dust for months now – Irina isn’t a gamer, and once the kids are in bed most days, if we have spare time, we try to find something we would both like to watch. Anyway, I remembered that the console wasn’t actually turning on last time I checked, so after triple checking all the connecting leads were OK, and then unplugging everything, leaving just power and the HDMI cable, there was still no activity. After applying the engineer’s touch (short sharp shock to the box), it kicked into life. We decided to use the kinect, and to play Kinect Sports after a little driving fun.
You can see a montage of our sessions below – sorry about the low quality, I am sure last year’s clips were better. I’ve cleaned the lenses since just in case. Anyway, first we have Dan and Irina – I can’t remember who won overall. Dan is VERY keen to point out he didn’t lose at the boxing mini game.

Justin and Me – This was a draw, however given that Justin hadn’t ever played this game before, I suspect any subsequent rematches would not end as flatteringly for me. Especially if the javelin game was involved (I never learn it would seem, as I once again pulled some random muscle/ligament type thing in my arm when over-exerting a virtual throw of the javelin, as I did last year)!

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Mar 03 2012

Trying out “Draft” 4 1st time….

Category: TweetsChrisM @ 9:32 pm

Trying out “Draft” 4 1st time. (Paulo back in town for w/end). Extensive menu, lots of seats. Long Island Iced Teas. Will try2report results

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Jan 29 2012

Long Island Iced Tea o’clock, …

Category: Pictures,TweetsChrisM @ 1:05 am

Long Island Iced Tea o’clock, my self-awarded treat4taking Anna swimming. Had to wait until someone else wanted 1 http://twitpic.com/8cttgj

Cointreau, Gin, Tequila, Vodka And Rum

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Jul 03 2010

Superb early goal by almost yo…

Category: Sport,TweetsChrisM @ 8:07 pm

Superb early goal by almost yoghurt themed Mueller. 1-0 to Germany. LARGE German crowd in attendance here.Maradonna looks crest fallen.Good.

Turns out his name is Müller (with an umlaut), but the TV station’s graphics couldn’t handle that, so substituted it for ue instead.

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Jun 23 2010

At Melnitza (the Ukranian rest…

Category: Eating Out,Pictures,TweetsChrisM @ 6:28 pm

At Melnitza (the Ukranian restaurant with tasty garlic breads) with family celebrating Ira’s Dad’s brithday http://twitpic.com/1z8p44

Irina And Anna Selecting From The Menu

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Jun 21 2010

Irina’s First Time Posting

Category: PersonalIrinaM @ 8:49 pm

My name is Irina. For those who do not know me yet, I am Chris’ wife. Chris has been asking me to write a post for his blog for many, many months. All this time I was either not ready, too busy, worried about my writing skills or simply too lazy. Last week, after we bought and tested the new deep fat fryer, Chris asked me AGAIN if I would like to write a post, and maybe review it on his blog. FINALLY, I decide to give it a go, so please try to contain your excitement, dear readers!!!

Let me start by explaining that both of us are not particularly healthy eaters. Being aware of potential health risks we still allow ourselves to enjoy some naughty food, like chips (or “kartoffel free”, as they are known in this part of the world). Our old deep fat fryer has already had it’s fair share of use and we decided to send it into retirement (as it happens, my Mum decided that it can retire at their house with an occasional use), and buy a new one.

When we finally managed to get to the shop (“Sulpack” in Kenesary St.), despite the hit and miss poor customer service, we were faced, to my surprise, with quite a wide selection of deep fat fryers. As usual, Chris and I had completely different selection criteria in mind and again, as usual, we did not agree on them before we were presented with a choice. I was interested in a compact, easy to clean, good-make fryer. As far as I could tell, Chris was purely interested in the capacity – the bigger, the better! After some typical arguments (I guess all couples go though that, when buying household appliances) about which one to choose, Chris spotted a Tefal Family Oleoclean 1.3Kg fryer. So, we decided to investigate exactly what that model had to offer.

Tefal Family Oleoclean Deep Fat Fryer

It turned out that this particular deep fat fryer comes in two separate major parts: the base (which includes all the electric parts) and a “saucepan” part for the oil and chips. The principle is very close to a cordless kettle. The beauty of this configuration, as we already discovered, is that the “saucepan” part can be thoroughly cleaned without the worry that the electric elements will get wet. It can even be cleaned in a dishwasher if you are lucky enough to have one (we do not have enough space in our kitchen for it 🙁 ). This deep fat fryer also comes with a separate lidded bowl for storing the oil in between uses. I know that many fryers come with some sort of container, but this particular one, although quite big and bulky, has the advantage that the “saucepan” part of the fryer is placed directly on top of it (without the need to turn the fryer upside down, to pour the oil out and subsequently make lots of mess on the kitchen surfaces). The filtered oil slowly drains though a cleverly designed valve, leaving all the impurities in the pan, so they can be easily removed later and the pan can be cleaned thoroughly and frequently without the fear that it will take half of your life to scrub off (especially without the ability to use a metal scrubber or any chemicals) all the dried up oil inside and out. That made me very HAPPY! Now I do not have to be embarrassed and annoyed by the oily and smelly monster that used to sit in the corner of our kitchen. I have to say that, apart from being very easy to clean and operate, the deep fat fryer that we purchased does actually make nice and tasty chips (especially when Chris cooks them!)

So, if you were planning to buy a deep fat fryer and indulge yourself in unhealthy, but tasty food with out the hassle of having to intensively look after your fryer, I can highly recommend the Tefal Family Oleoclean deep fat fryer. Here is a short summery of its pros and cons:

Pros: EASY to clean , easy to operate, filters and drains the oil without creating a mess, hopefully not very smelly (though this one still needs to be confirmed), good capacity.
Cons: a little bit bulky, looks a bit cheap and plastic.

I hope you (the reader) will find this post a little bit useful, if not out right interesting and you (Chris) will be a bit happier that I have written something on your blog 🙂

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