Recipe · Uncategorized

Vegan Lavender Lemon Cheesecake

Crust:

  • 9 Graham Crackers
  • 4 TBSP of Smart Balance vegan butter (melted)
  • ¼ cup of sugar

 

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Just do it.
  2. Place your graham crackers in a ziploc bag and beat the hell out of them for what they did. Continue abusing them until they reach a uniform fine crumb texture.
  3. Add the pulverised crumbs to a mixing bowl with the melted butter (and sugar if you wish) and mix until you achieve a crumbly texture. It should ball up when whisked.
  4. Spread uniformly in the springform pan, pressing down on the bottom and pinching up on the sides ½ to a full inch.

 

Filling:

  • 2 8oz containers of Tofutti cream cheese.
  • 1 cup of Lavender Simple Syrup (recipe here)
  • 4 tsp of lemon juice
  • ¼ tsp of salt
  • 1 TBSP of extra firm tofu

 

  1. In a mixing bowl, food processor, or blender, mix the cream cheese and lavender simple syrup until it’s soft.
  2. If in a blender or food processor, incorporate the rest of the ingredients on low. If in a mixing bowl add the lemon juice and salt, on low, crush the tofu and add it last making sure that it’s completely incorporated.
  3. Pour the filling into the crust and bake for 45-50 minutes. The cake should be slightly jiggly when pulled from the oven.
  4. Allow the cheesecake to cool at room temperature, then refrigerate for 4 hours.

 

Topping:

  • ½ cup lavender simple syrup
  • ½ cup lemon juice
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 ½ TBSP of cornstarch
  1. Mix all ingredients together in a saucepan on medium heat until the mixture boils. Let boil for 1 minute and remove from heat.
  2. Pour atop the cheesecake after it has been pulled from the oven, but before refrigeration.
  3. Garnish with lemon zest before serving.

Lavender 2.jpg

Recipe · Uncategorized

Chad’s Recipes: Butter

Okay, this post is a bit different than my others. Instead of a creative writing piece, I’ve opted to write out my cannabis infused butter recipe that I perfected during my undergrad years. 

What you’ll need.

 

  • 3.5 or 7 grams (depending on your desired strength) per 1.25 sticks of butter. I say 1.25 sticks of butter as some will be lost during the heating and straining process to follow.
  • Unsalted Butter.
  • Cheese Cloth and a Strainer.
  • Mortar and Pestle (or a grinder/ coffee grinder)
  • Double Boiler setup.  
  • Rubber Spatula

 

Heady Butter

  1. Preheat your oven to 240 F.
  2. Break up your cannabis and spread the buds evenly on a baking sheet.
  3. Bake your nuggets for 30-40 minutes. This process is known as decarboxylation and turns the inactive psychoactive acids i.e. THCA(cid) into good ol’ THC. Stir around your herbs every 15ish minutes to get an even bake.
  4. While your nuggets are decarbing in the oven. Melt your butter in the top portion of your double boiler on low.
  5. When your cannabis is done baking and your kitchen smells nice and pungent, crush it into a fine meal with your mortar and pestle.
  6. Add the cannabis meal to your liquified butter.Stir on low for 10-20 minutes. Do not turn up the temperature of the burner, it will not help.
  7. Your butter should be a bright yellow greenish color. Pour through your cheesecloth/strainer setup into whatever container you’ll want to keep it in; use your rubber spatula to scrape every bit out of the pot.

Tip: To get all of your butter, let the setup cool off a bit then wrap the cheesecloth up, twist the top, and squeeze the rest of the butter out. Your hands will get greasy, oh well.

 

For less heady butter preheat your oven to 250 and bake your buds for 50 minutes.

There you have it.  Cannabutter to use in almost all recipes. Try not to use your butter in any recipe that calls for a temperatures greater than 350 degrees.

Fiction · Short · Uncategorized · unedited

January 17, 2017.

So this scene, like the 16th’s didn’t originate from a prompt. I wanted to explore the idea of desolation and loneliness. What’s one of the loneliest places on the planet– personally I think Antarctica is up there. 

Anton had never thought himself an explorer in any respect, but lo, here he was. A mix of pride and fear of the unknown welled in his chest as he and Marie, his team lead, marched on into the blinding brightness of the cold dunes at the bottom of the earth. It wasn’t like back at UCLA. Here, on a clear day, he could see to the horizon in almost every direction. Today was one of those days, nothing but blue skies and white ice. No trace of any other humans. To pull back from his mentally desolate edge, Anton occupied his thoughts with the waddle of penguins that had appeared on the horizon.

 

“It still amazes me,” Anton said through the black-mesh face cover that left only his eyes exposed.

 

“What does? Penguins?” Marie mused.

 

“No. Well, yeah. Penguins. But just the fact that a living thing has adapted itself to live in such an unforgiving place.”

 

Marie smiled, though Anton couldn’t see it. She understood his wonderment immediately. She too had been a newbie at one point– everyone had. Seeing the struggle of life on a documentary or in stills doesn’t compare to being up close and personal.  

 

“I mean it is incredible,” Marie began. “But where’s there’s water,” she said kicking the ice with her spiked boots, “organic life always finds a way.”

 

Anton didn’t feel completely satisfied with the answer, but shrugged it off as the two continued on into the wastes.

 

The two marched alongside parallel to the penguins for a time, stealing a glance every few minutes. Compared to the hunched march of the colorless soldiers, Anton and Marie looked out of place. Both wore their institute-issued neon-orange jackets atop their black layered pants. Each had their fur-lined hood up over their head to ward off the biting southern wind. They were, by Marie’s estimation, about half of a mile out from base.

 

“This spot ought to be good.” Marie said turning to Anton and confirming their coordinates on their GPS. The two stopped and humped their heavy packs off. Slowly and deliberately the two took out the makings of Marie’s developmental probe. Altogether it weighed eighty pounds and stood five feet tall when completed. Due to the inconvenience of construction, they had decided before setting out to build on-site. Together they struggled for the better part of two hours trying to assemble the blasted thing with in spite of their bulky gloves.  

 

“Can you help me?” Marie asked turning to Anton who was then sitting on the ground attempting to assemble one of the legs.

 

“Hmm?”

 

“I need help,” she sighed holding up the base of the pulsing-sensor mount. “See this little screw here? It needs to go here, but every time I try to thread it, the damn screws sticks.” Marie held the two-centimeter screw up in her cupped right hand and the mount in the left.

 

Anton grunted his way to his feet, fighting the bulk of his gear the entire way up. “You tried the WD-40?”

 

“Couldn’t. My can is out.”

 

“Mine is too, almost.” Anton frowned shaking his can. “Here, let me see that,” he said reaching for the mount.

 

Marie handed over the mount, dropped the screw into Anton’s glove and pulled her magnetic screwdriver from her pocket. Anton grabbed all three in sequence and took a knee on the ice. His first attempt yielded nothing. Neither did his second or fourth or seventh, each becoming increasingly hasty.

 

“It’s these fucking gloves,” Anton grunted pulling the mesh away from his face. He stuck the index finger in his mouth and began to pull.

 

“I don’t think it’s going to work better when your hands become numb.” Marie said standing over his work.

 

“It’ll be real quick. I just need to get it started.”

 

Marie looked down at her watch, 2 p.m. The sun would be setting on their expedition soon turning their white tundra into a twilight-blue death sentence. At a brisk walking pace of 3 miles an hour she figured that their return journey would be about ten to fifteen minutes. With only 45 minutes to get this probe in the ground she wasn’t in a position to argue with Anton’s logic.

 

“Just be careful,” Marie said. “These conditions,” she paused to give her calculation a bit of credibility “you have maybe, two, two-and-a-half minutes until frostbite sets in. Once that happens, that hand’ll be useless until we get it warmed up.”

 

Anton nodded wordlessly, barely hearing Marie’s warning. His glove was now hanging from his mouth as he took the screw tried to force it down and through the threading. His first attempt was unsuccessful. By the second Anton’s hand began to shake heavily and his breathing became labored.

 

“Just leave Anton. Put your glove back on.”

 

Anton ignored the command and took a deep breath to steady. On his third attempt he forced the screw in partially. “Here,” he said handing over the mount. His hand shook as he put the glove back on.

 

“You alright?” Marie asked attaching the sensor base on top of the center stand.

 

Anton said slowly flexing his fingers. His right pinky and ring finger completely stiffened and all around his hand felt prodded at by invisible needles. “It’ll be fine. Fingers are just a bit numb at the moment.”

 

“Yeah, exposure to high winds and negative 40 degree temperature will do that to ya.”

 

Anton walked back to his pack for his chemical hand warmers while Marie finished up the initial mounting. Anton continued to flex his fingers and pace in behind Marie while she attached the rest of the legs to the constructed probe.

 

“So what does this thing do again?” Anton asked watching Marie hammer the second leg deep into the ice.

 

“It collects,” Marie began, exhaling between each blow, “thermal and flow data from underneath the ice.”

 

“Flow data?” Anton gaped.

 

“Sorry, yeah it’s an idea I’ve been working on for a while. So it’s essentially sonar that we use to measure currents of water under the ice.”

 

“Okay, but what’re the applications?” Anton asked trying to keep up.

 

Marie didn’t know if he was sincere at this point or just trying to save face. She was after all a leading climate scientists in her field and Anton was just a marine biologist.

 

“This continent is breaking. Not as in melting per say, although that is also happening. But it’s also literally breaking apart. My hypothesis deals with over-energized currents of water are running underneath the ice effectively carving off huge slabs of ice.”

 

“Oh. Gotcha.”

 

Marie stood and reveled at the probe she had seen evolve all the way from her initial designs. The cold was beginning to spread through her toes and fingers now. It was time to head back to base before the cold crept any further. Marie turned westward. The waning sun was now nearing the horizon. For a moment the brilliance of the red and purple sky caught her off her guard..

 

“Hey,” Anton said putting a hand on Marie’s shoulder. “We should get going soon.I don’t want to get caught out here in the dark.”
“Yeah you’re right.” Marie said. “Just one last thing.” She reached in her pack and drew out an orange ribbon. Gently she tied the ribbon in a bow around one of the probes legs. They gathered their packs and set off with the sunset at their backs towards a blurred indigo skyline.    

 

Long · Uncategorized · unedited

Prompt January 11, 2017

: A siren, not blessed with the mesmerising beauty of his sisters, must lure sailors into jumping into the water by challenging them to fight him.

 

My only thing with this prompt was, I felt, that I didn’t spend enough time with the actual siren. Though that’s a great thing with prompts like these– you not beholden to any expectations and are free to write about whatever you want. 

 

“Aye captain,” Robbie the lookout called down from the crow’s nest, “we’re coming up on some rough looking shallows.”

 

Captain Greymane, stiff as ever, looked up briefly and nodded. He had heard the message, and chose not to respond. He knew exactly where they were– he had been here before many times and almost lost himself. The smell and the feel of the waves locked the captain’s stomach in a knot. Treachery was not far off.

 

“ALRIGHT,” Greymane hollered from the helm to no one in particular. “Listen up lads, if this be your first time on this ship in these waters, get a piece of twine and bound your hands together.”

 

Many of the men aboard stopped their work and looked at the captain with confusion.

 

“We’re to what?” called a voice from the main deck.

 

“You heard me you dog,” snapped Greymane, losing patience that he never had. “Bound your fucking hands together, or you’ll wish you had.”

 

Most of the crewmen quickly found random lengths of rope and bound their hands, some behind, some in front, and one eager musician tied his hands to look as if he was locked in a steamy embrace with the mast. At this the Captain looked to his violinist and together they shrugged.

 

A few of the crewmen had decided that this command was beneath them until the burly quartermaster set upon them with his lightning-quick whip. One sly deck swab, Martin, who had exceptional experience with slipping bindings had another man tie his hands only to free himself after the veteran crew’s inspection.  

 

‘Why in the bloody hell should I tie my hands up?’ Martin thought, “So that Quartermaster and that grouch Greymane can throw me overboard without a fight and then take my share of the gold?’

 

As the sloop slipped by the shallows which slowly ascended into a crude forsaken rock formation the crew found themselves utterly bored without the use of their hands.

 

“Hey you faries.” Called a high-pitched voice off the starboard side. “Yeah I’m talking to you.”

 

“MAN OVERBOARD,” cried one of Greymane’s sailor. Within a second, more than a dozen crewmen attempted to aid the sailor much to their struggle.

 

“Nope, try again you idiots,” the voice called again. The sailors stopped frantically scanning the waters and looked up to spy a hideous creature riddled with acne sunbathing on a jagged-ringed plateau.

 

“Get away from that railing,” bellowed Greymane as he kept hold of the rudder wheel.

 

“Get away from that railing,” the creature mocked back. He threw back his head of greasy tangled hair and laughed. “Do as your master says you lousy morons.”

 

Martin, who had made his way over to the railing to get a glimpse of the monstrosity yelled out in defiance. “No man is our master. We are free men.”

 

“Is that so,” The creature smirked. “Then why are all of your hands bound?”

 

Martin looked around and found his fellow sailors at a loss for a rebuttal.

 

“What’s a matter? Are you dumb and mute?” The creatures smile had twisted into a malicious mask.

 

“Shut it you wretched creature if you know what’s good for you.” Martin cried back.

 

“Or what?”

 

“Quartermaster, restrain that man.” ordered Greymane.

 

It was too late though. Martin took off his shirt and was diving off the side of the H.M.S. Swift as the rest of the crew watched on half in amusement and half in horror. Martin, who admittedly wasn’t the entirely comfortable in the water and had yet to completely find his sea legs was charging this prepubescent blob with righteous fury. What transpired only took mere seconds. The enraged Martin charged the creature with his hands raised with the intention to box. The creature shared no such intention and instead vaulted itself over Martin and propelled them both into the water never to be seen again.

 

After another hour of sailing in near silence the Captain ordered the restraints to be removed.

 

“Sir, should we have a service?” asked the Quartermaster.
“No. We don’t mourn idiots,” answered Greymane. “Especially not ones who fall for such petty insults. We sail on.”     

Fiction · Uncategorized · unedited

Prompt January 10, 2017

Prompt: The Devil appears before you and puts a heavy hand on your shoulder, “Look, we need to talk about you putting me in every Writing Prompt.”

Yeah this one gets a bit Meta for sure.

The sun glared through the living room window as I found myself lounging on the couch. The angle of the mid-January sun-setting was so perfectly obstructive that I barely could see anything on the television.

 

“Screw this,” I grunted to myself as I reached for the remote.

 

I tossed the remote on the floor and scooped up my laptop off the coffee table, turned, and put my feet up where the laptop had been.  

 

‘Might as well try and write something’ I thought.

 

I navigated to reddit for a touch of inspiration and perhaps a prompt. Many had to do with the Devil it seemed–even more than usual. I found a prompt to work with entitled: ‘You find out the Devil is actually an annoying coworker and that your office building is Hell, how do you piece together that you’ve ended up here?’ I smirked and let loose a symphony of clicking and clacks onto the keyboard. The sound of hard plastic shoes scraped on the steps outside the front door and then, there came a knock.   

 

“Hello?” I called. “Who’s there?”

 

“It’s the mailman,” they shouted through the door.

 

“One sec. Hnng.”  I grunted as I lurched to my feet. In my sweats and slippers I padded over to the door and undid the deadbolt.

 

“Yeah?” I asked opening the door.

 

At the foot of the door lay a lonely envelop.

 

‘What did I order’ thinking back through my recent Amazon window shopping. My first thought was that I’d done a spot of shopping after a drink or two.

 

A voice from behind me chimed in.

 

“I think you’ll like it. It’s one of my favorites.”

 

I wheeled around to a balding, sharply-dressed figure sitting where I had been just moments earlier. His face curled into a huge smile and I felt strangely at ease with this stranger in my house.

 

“Lloyd Blankfein?” was all I managed in my utter confusion.

 

“Not quite,” the man laughed. “Though he gets likened to me all the time.”

 

“Well who the fuck are you and how did you get in here?” My confusion began to spark into panic.

 

“I’ve had many names. But you can call me Lucifer.”

 

“As in the Devil?”

 

“Yes,” he squinted, “That’s another.”

 

“Aw fuck, am I going to Hell?” I said feeling a tightness in my chest. “What did I do?”

 

“Of course not m’boy, just calm down.” Lucifer laughed. “That’s not how any of this works. No I’m just here to ask you to stop using my likeness in your stories. That’s it. You’re making me out to be some penultimate evil but really, I’m not a bad guy.”

 

Lucifer’s nostrils flared and his dark pupils flashed an angry red.

“But,” I stuttered. “But, my draft. You’re why my protagonist descends into madness. I’m already 600 words in, I don’t really want to change it now.”

 

Lucifers smile dropped and he seemed to grow taller. A draft entered the room and the light overhead began to dim. The faint scent of sulfur swept through the room.   

 

“Listen,” Lucifer started, “I’m not evil. I’m not responsible for any worldly evil. And, I’m getting quite tired of taking all this heat all the time. Yes fine, I’m in charge of a nasty little place called Hell but not by my choice.”

 

I began to speak but a quick finger in the air cut that short.

 

“So,” he continued. “You will take me out of your story.” Lucifer’s tone indicating that the last was not a request rather a demand. I saw that there was no winning the argument at this point.

 

“Okay, fine.”

 

“Wonderful,” he said smiling and clasping his hands together. “I think your story will benefit ultimately. Too many stories nowaday suffer from one-dimensional characters who are either good or evil. Let me tell you, I’ve been around the block a bit and let me tell you–nothing is black and white so your characters certainly shouldn’t be.”

 

Lucifer now stood from his, well, my seat on the couch and rose to reveal a ‘man’ taller than I had ever seen.

 

“I should be going.” He said, hooves clacking on the hardwood floors. “Many writers to visit. Also you didn’t buy that package drunk,” he continued pointing at the envelope still in my hands. “I bought that for you. Enjoy.”
I watched wordlessly as this giant goat man strode out my front door and into the still grayness of the dying day. I turned back to the package and ripped the top of the envelope. Upended, the envelope produced an old copy of Mein Kampf accompanied by a note which read: “Even evil thinks it intentions are pure. Take it from one of the greatest villains in history.”  

Fiction · Uncategorized · unedited

Prompt January 9, 2017

Prompt: Your 11 year old nephew just ate 2 of your LSD gummy bears 45 minutes ago and you have to make sure he makes it through sane

Note: This one was pretty fun, but looking at it a few days later I think that the ending could use a bit of work.

 

“Hey Uncle Matt,” Timmy craned his neck round from the hum of the television.

 

“Yeah?”

 

“Can I have a juice box?” The request was innocent enough.

 

‘He probably saw the drawer full of snack-packs earlier too’ thought Matt, ‘It’s only a matter of time.’

 

“Yeah sure. Get two. One for each of us.”

 

Wordlessly, Timmy hopped up from his cross-legged seat and bounded out of the living room. Matt listened to the pitter-pattering of the 11-year-old’s feet as he half-ran-half walked to the fridge in the other room. It wasn’t often that Diane asked Matt was asked to watch his nephew. But, when he was, he didn’t turn down the opportunity– it was nice having some semblance of company.

 

After a minute, Matt strained to hear the child’s footsteps once again and realized he could not. He reached for the remote lying on the couch next to him and muted the television– still no footsteps.

 

‘Fuck, alright,’ he thought.

 

In one clunky motion he pumped his legs and with a soft grunt and tuck of his gut, Matt was on his feet and started for the kitchen.

 

“Timmy.” He called. “The juice is on the bottom shelf, you can’t miss it.”

 

“I got it.” Timmy responded.

 

As Matt rounded the corner he looked down and saw two juice boxes sitting on the tiled counter adjacent to the fridge. Both french doors were still ajar and appeared to have sprouted tiny legs.

 

“What are you doing? Still hungry? After all that pizza?” Asked Matt.

 

The doors swung closed and there stood little Timmy with a rolled up bit of tinfoil in his hand.

 

“You didn’t tell me you had gummy bears.”

 

He didn’t.

 

“Where did you find those?” He asked staring at the candy.  

 

“They were behind the pudding. Here” Timmy thrust the tinfoil shell with two gummy bears towards his uncle. “Two for me and two for you.”

 

Two thoughts simultaneously collided in Matt’s ever-hurrying thought process. ‘At least he’s sharing,’ and ‘Oh shit, Diane is going to kill me.’ Both were true, though the latter was a bit more troubling. Matt took the tinfoil ball out of Timmy’s hand, scrunched it back up and put it on the upper-most shelf in the refrigerator.  

 

“Timmy.” Matt began sternly, “I didn’t say you could have any of these gummy bears, did I?”

 

“No,” Timmy said dropping his gaze to the floor.

 

“So you took these from me?”

 

“Yes,” Timmy responded, quieter than before.

 

“Well then,” Matt said wondering how his father might handle something like this. “It’s time for bed then.”

 

“Bed?” Timmy’s eyes began to water. “But, it’s only 7 o’clock. I’m sorry Uncle Matt. Please please no. Please can I stay up a little longer.”

 

‘I’ve got to be gentle with the kid,’ thought Matt, ‘He’s probably got another hour before those gummies kick in.’

 

“It’s either bed or I’m calling your mom. And she won’t be happy if she has to leave dinner early.” Matt said pulling his cell from his pocket and began mock dialing his sister. It was a bluff of course but he couldn’t think of any other card to play.  

 

As wordlessly as he bounded off, Timmy sulked his way from the kitchen, down the hall, up the stairs, and into the spare bedroom. Matt trailed behind, and began sending texts. The first to his dealer read “Hey, if you’re still good on L? I need 2 more.” The second, infinitely more nerve wracking text to Diane read, “Timmy said he want’s to stay here tonight. I’ll drop him off tomorrow, have a nice night.”

 

He read over the latter over carefully to make sure there were no mistakes.

 

Matt was halfway up the stairs when he pocketed his phone and walked into the bathroom. He briefly glanced at himself in the mirror, fixed his hair, and reached to the side and opened the medicine cabinet inside. On the bottom shelf was the purple sleepytime CVS-brand Nyquil. He hurried back downstairs to the kitchen found the two juice boxes and poured them into a glass. After scanning the safety warning on the back, he added three shots of the knockoff Nyquil and swirled the two together.

 

Matt, beginning to feel that time was not on his side looked at his phone– 45 minutes left. Okay– plenty of time, hopefully.

 

He entered the guest room and handed Timmy the glass of the sickly looking purple juice. Even though he was being punished Timmy was beaming–not a good sign.

 

“Here.” Matt said “Drink this.”

 

“What is it?”

 

“It’s your juice. You did ask for this so you can have it. Now finish it.”

 

Timmy followed the order the best he could, choking down the concoction, letting out a cough after.

 

“I think the juice went bad Uncle Matt.”

 

“Really?” Matt sniffed the glass and feigned curiosity. “I think you’re right. I’ll get some new stuff for the next time you’re here.”

 

Matt glanced once more at Timmy’s eyes searching for any sign of dilation. After he decided that Timmy looked fine he turned and walked to the door.

 

“I’m not mad at you bud, but you can’t go and take things without asking. Good night,” Matt both said and prayed.

 

“Good night.” was all Matt heard from the darkness.

 

Matt hit the lights and shut the door behind him. The next two hours Matt sat against the wall adjacent the bedroom wrapped in his own anxiety. Any little movement sent shivers down his body as he strained to listen. Eventually he was able to distinguish the sounds of his own house and settled down a bit.
At 9:30 Diane finally responded. “Really? Okay then. Thanks for watching him Matt. I really needed tonight.” His dealer though, remained silent– typical.