Saturday Tweets: New Year’s Eve 2016

Root Simple’s Favorite New Year’s Eve Cocktails

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While you’re ringing in the New Year we’ll most likely be snoozing. Kelly and I rarely celebrate the evening, since neither of us function well the next day if we’re up past 11. And even if Kelly weren’t recovering from open heart surgery, she has an unfortunate allergy to alcohol that prevents her from drinking. But, perhaps earlier in the evening I might make one of my favorite, if unimaginative, cocktails.

Denizens of the snowy regions of the world may object that two of these cocktails are considered appropriate only for warm weather. But we do live in Los Angeles where it can be hot in December (though not this year, so far). Personally, I like these cocktails regardless of the outdoor temperature. Here’s my three favorite:

pegu_club_postcardThe Pegu Club
This was the house cocktail in the 1920s at Burma’s Pegu Club, a gentleman’s establishment for British Army officers and government officials. The cocktail faded into obscurity only to be revived during the heady early years of the vintage cocktail revival of the aughts. The cocktail went viral and even inspired a new Pegu Club in New York. It’s simple and easy:

1 1/2 ounces gin
3/4 ounce orange curaçao (or Triple Sec if you’re cheap like me)
1 teaspoon lime juice
Dash bitters
Dash orange bitters

Shake with crushed ice, strain and serve in a cocktail glass with a lime twist. The Angostura bitters will give the drink a pleasant, pink tinge.

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Negroni
Named for Count Camillo Negroni, who supposedly asked a bartender to replace the soda water in his Americano with gin, the Negroni has become ubiquitous at many hipster bar hangouts and has many variations. I keep it simple:

1 part gin
1 part sweet vermouth
1 part Campari

Stir into a glass with ice and garnish with an orange slice.

Manhattan
2 ounces Rye whiskey
1 ounce sweet red vermouth
2 dashes Angostura bitters

Place the booze in a shaker with ice, stir for 30 seconds and strain into cocktail glasses. Here’s the important part: garnish with the classy kind of cherries, not those bright red ones. What you want are marasca cherries such as the Luxardo brand, imported from Italy. They are dark colored and delicious but should not be stored in the fridge.

And take my advice for a decent New Years Day: stop at two cocktails the night before!

Happy New Year everyone! And many thanks for your kind wishes! Hope you all have and abundant and happy 2017!

The Primitive Technology Guy

I mentioned last week that episodic TV, YouTube videos and a recliner are an important part of Kelly’s open heart surgery recovery process. Our breeches are still deep in that Jas. Townsend and Son 18th century YouTube cooking hole, where we’re learning about cleaning pots with brick dust and how to make Norfolk dumplings on the go.

Australian reader Jampotts reminded me of another wildly popular YouTuber who just goes by the handle “Primitive Technology.” The anonymous creator of the these wordless videos, shot in northern extreme of Queensland, Australia uses a “show me don’t tell me” philosophy of film making that I greatly admire. No long, babbling intros!

Kelly was especially impressed with his pump drill fire starting technique:

He has a blog that describes the content of his videos in more detail.

People like John Townsend and the Primitive Technology guy are the good side of the internet, producing quality work that’s a lot better than mainstream television. If you have a favorite YouTube channel let us know about it in the comments.

Saturday Tweets: Christmas Eve Edition

Making It Available in Overdrive App

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I’m a huge public library fanboy. With LA’s huge central library is just steps from my gym, I usually find myself with way too many books checked out. On my last unnecessary and purely recreational library visit, my favorite librarian informed me that our book Making It is available for download in the Overdrive app. Ego boosted!

Many public libraries, in addition to books, now have a long list of digital gewgaws, apps and resources. One of those apps is Overdrive, which allows you to download eBooks, videos and audio books to your digital devices for free. Over 30,000 libraries worldwide use Overdrive to distribute materials. To sign up you log in with your library card number and create an account. You will also need to install the Nook app to read books downloaded through Overdrive.

I highly recommend that you ask your local librarian about your local library’s digital resources. In addition to apps like Overdrive, many libraries have powerful online research tools. Your librarian can also step you through how to download and use apps like Overdrive.

As I’ve been blathering about cleaning and de-clutering on the blog lately, I hope it’s obvious to see how getting books at the library can free up shelf space and save money. Downloading digital books can be part of that de-clutered, minimalist lifestyle. While, personally, I prefer physical books, I also appreciate a bargain. Overdrive and Making It are available to you for freeeeeeee!