Florida Frogmore Stew

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* No frogs were harmed in the making of this stew. *

1 ½ gallons water
juice of 1 lemon
salt to taste
3 tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning
2 pounds kielbasa, cut into ½ inch slices
10 to 12 ears of corn on the cob
4 pounds of shrimp in the shell
4 pounds stone crab (these are usually pre-cooked)
onions and  new or red potatoes

Cook onions and potatoes until softened. In a large stock pot over medium high heat, add the water, lemon, salt and Old Bay Seasoning. Bring it to a boil.

Add the sausage and gently boil, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Add corn on the cob broken into 3 inch pieces and continue cooking an additional five minutes. Add shrimp and stone crab and cook an additional three minutes longer. This is just enough time to cook the shrimp and heat up the pre-cooked stone crab. Remove from heat, drain immediately and serve.

 

Oxford Evolution Debate of 1860

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Today in Science History —> On this day in 1860, the 1860 Oxford evolution debate at the Oxford University Museum of Natural History takes place.

This is the debate in which Thomas Henry Huxley supposedly bested Bishop Wilberforce with the remark about the ape and the grandfather: “Huxley rose to defend Darwin’s theory, finishing his speech with the now-legendary assertion that he was not ashamed to have a monkey for his ancestor, but he would be ashamed to be connected with a man who used great gifts to obscure the truth.”

It’s not clear whether that actually was said, but we do know that both Huxley and Joseph Hooker spoke in defense of Darwin’s theory.

#Evolution

PTSD Awareness Day

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It’s National PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) Awareness Day! Don’t tell me just to get over it that it’s in the past or I can’t allow it to define me! Do you honestly think I haven’t tried that? So what does that mean, what are the symptoms…

—> Intrusive memories

~ Recurrent, unwanted distressing memories of the traumatic event
~ Reliving the traumatic event as if it were happening again (flashbacks)
~ Upsetting dreams or nightmares about the traumatic event
~ Severe emotional distress or physical reactions to something that reminds you of the traumatic event

—> Avoidance

~ Trying to avoid thinking or talking about the traumatic event
~ Avoiding places, activities or people that remind you of the traumatic event

—> Negative changes in thinking and mood

~ Negative thoughts about yourself, other people or the world
~ Hopelessness about the future
~ Memory problems, including not remembering important aspects of the traumatic event
~ Difficulty maintaining close relationships
~ Feeling detached from family and friends
~ Lack of interest in activities you once enjoyed
~ Difficulty experiencing positive emotions
~ Feeling emotionally numb

—> Changes in physical and emotional reactions

~ Being easily startled or frightened
~ Always being on guard for danger
~ Self-destructive behavior, such as drinking too much or driving too fast
~ Trouble sleeping
~ Trouble concentrating
~ Irritability, angry outbursts or aggressive behavior
~ Overwhelming guilt or shame

#PTSD #Awareness #Day

Simple Saltine Toffee

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An oldie but a goodie.

About 50 saltine crackers
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 cup dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate pieces
1 cup finely chopped pecans
Flaky sea salt, such as Maldon

Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Line a 12-by-18-inch rimmed baking sheet with nonstick foil or parchment paper.

Lay the crackers out in one layer as close together as possible, filling the baking sheet.

Melt the butter, brown sugar, and vanilla in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring frequently. When the butter is melted, raise the heat and bring the mixture to a boil, and keep at a boil for about 3 minutes, stirring. When the 3 minutes are up, give it a good stir and pour evenly over the crackers on the baking sheet.

Spread the caramel around with a spatula if needed, but don’t worry if the surface isn’t covered completely, you just don’t want it pooling in one place. Bake the crackers for 5 minutes, then remove from the oven and immediately sprinkle the chocolate chips over the top in an even layer. Let sit for 5 minutes, then use a spatula to spread the chocolate in an even layer over the crackers.

Sprinkle the pecans and the sea salt evenly over the top of the toffee. Leave to cool, then place in the refrigerator for about an hour for the chocolate to set. Break into pieces and store in an airtight container.

 

 

Today in Gay Rights

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A lot happened today in Gay Rights:

~ 2003 —> The U.S. Supreme Court rules in Lawrence v. Texas that gender-based sodomy laws are unconstitutional.

~ 2013 —> The U.S. Supreme Court ruled, 5–4, that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional and in violation of the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution.

~ 2015 —> The U.S. Supreme Court ruled, 5–4, that same-sex couples have a constitutional right to marriage under the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution.

Stay tuned if any of these advancements in gay rights is overturned by the current makeup of the Supreme Court.

#GayRights #CivilRights

Easy Sweet Potato Fries

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2 pounds orange-fleshed sweet potatoes
2 tablespoons canola oil or olive oil
1½ teaspoons kosher or fine sea salt *

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Peel the sweet potatoes, if desired, and cut them into slabs, batons, wedges, coins, half-moons, whatever your heart desires. They can be any size, really, as long as they are not less than ¼ inch and not more than 1 inch thick.

Place them in a large bowl and drizzle with the oil. Season with salt and your choice of spices *, if using, and toss to coat. (Use about 1½ teaspoons salt if you’re not using additional seasoning; adjust salt content depending on your preferred spice mix.)

Add the sweet potatoes onto the baking sheet, scraping out any seasoning or fat clinging to the bowl, and arrange them in a single layer.

Roast, turning once if their bottoms darken quickly, until tender and browned, 15 to 25 minutes, depending on size.

* Try adding a teaspoon or two of any of your favorite seasonings. Got some herbes de Provence? Toss it in there. Spanish paprika? Definitely. Za’atar, curry powder Cajun seasonings, Old Bay?  Why not.

 

“Compromise” By Barry Goldwater

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Compromise is vital and necessary to a functioning democracy:

“Mark my word, if and when these preachers get control of the [Republican] party, and they’re sure trying to do so, it’s going to be a terrible damn problem. Frankly, these people frighten me. Politics and governing demand compromise. But these Christians believe they are acting in the name of God, so they can’t and won’t compromise. I know, I’ve tried to deal with them.”
~ Barry Goldwater, 1964

#Compromise #Democracy #Politics #BarryGoldwater