Wednesday, November 26, 2008
We will be open to the public today until at 6:00. We will be closed on Thursday and Friday and will reopen on Saturday morning at 10:00 am with normal hours for the remainder of the weekend.
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday!
Makesabout 10 cups
Active time:20 min
Start to finish:5 hr
We come back to this basic stock recipe year after year because we love the depth and dark hue that come from roasting the meat and vegetables beforehand—they translate to a terrific gravy.
5 lb turkey parts such as wings, drumsticks, and thighs
2 medium yellow onions, left unpeeled, trimmed and quartered
2 celery ribs, cut into 2-inch lengths
2 carrots, cut into 2-inch lengths
4 qt cold water, divided
5 parsley stems (without leaves)
1 Turkish bay leaf or 1/2 California
8 black peppercorns
a 17- by 14-inch flameproof roasting pan
*Preheat oven to 500°F with rack in lowest position.
*If using turkey wings, halve at joints with a cleaver or large knife, then crack wing bones in several places with back of cleaver or knife. (Do not crack bones if using other parts.) Pat turkey dry. Roast turkey parts, skin sides down, in dry roasting pan, turning once, until browned well, about 1 hour. Transfer to an 8-quart stockpot using tongs, reserving fat in roasting pan.
*Add onions, celery, and carrots to fat in pan and roast, stirring halfway through roasting, until golden, 25 to 30 minutes. Add vegetables to turkey in stockpot.
*Straddle roasting pan across 2 burners, then add 2 cups water and deglaze by boiling, stirring and scraping up brown bits, 1 minute. Add deglazing liquid to turkey and vegetables in stockpot, then add remaining 3 1/2 quarts water along with remaining ingredients and 1 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and gently simmer, uncovered, 3 hours.
*Strain stock through a large fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl, discarding solids. (You will have about 10 cups stock.) If using immediately, let stand until fat rises to top, 1 to 2 minutes, then skim off and discard fat. If not, chill, uncovered, until cool, then covered, before skimming fat (it will be easier to remove when cool or cold).
Cooks’ note: Stock can be chilled in an airtight container up to 1 week or frozen up to 3 months.
Monday, November 24, 2008
Now I am in the midst of reading the Twilight series and have made it through the first three books, Twilight, New Moon and Eclipse. I will be writting a review for each book with this being the first. If you haven't read the book but plan to, you may want to skip the review so I don't spoil any of the book for you. I personally hate it when any of the plot is revealed before I have had a chance to read it.
Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
Twilight is the story of a teenage girl named Bella Swan who moves from sunny Pheonix, Arizona to rainy Forks, Washington to live with father. On her first day of school, Bella meets the unnaturally handsome Edward Cullen, who harbors and obvious yet unfounded dislike toward her. Despite Edward's aversion, Bella is mysteriously drawn to him. Then Edward unexpectedly saves Bella from being killed by a car sliding uncontrollably on ice. He shields Bella with his own body. Miraculously, he survives without so much as a scratch, fueling Bella's intense curiosity. Shortly after the accident they become friends; however, Bella begins to suspect that Edward is not entirely human.
On a trip to the ocean with some of her high school friends, Bella meets Jacob, a Quileute Native who lives on his tribe's reservation. Jacob tells Bella Quileute legends about "the cold ones" who feed off of human blood. According to legend, the Quileute "wolfmen" protect the tribe from "the cold ones" until a treaty was reached in recent years by a group of bloodrinkers who feed on animals only. The treaty allows "the cold ones" to live in peace and hunt animals, though they are not allowed on Quileute land. Bella then realizes that Edward isn't human, but a vampire, and she still wishes to be his friend. They soon fall in love and she discovers the reason behind his less than friendly behavior is that he is unresistably drawn to the scent of her and her blood. The story continues by illustrating the complications that arise from a human-vampire relationship until Bella is threatened by a human feeding vampire and the Cullen family is forced to fight for her life.
I enjoyed the book, though at times it was a little over-the-top romance as well as obviously written for a teenage audience. Meyer constantly reiterated Edward's beauty to the point of redundancy in the typical romance cliche style of the "he was so beautiful I kept forgetting to breathe" genre. This, however, was balanced out by wonderful storytelling and good character development.
Written as a first person narrative, the story is told by the main character, Bella. The fantastical world of Edward Cullen's vampire family is revealed slowly as she herself discovers them. This has the reader always wanting to know more, and makes the book hard to put down. Bella's character is that of a normal teenager, a little pessimistic, sarcastic and self-conscious, which makes her easy to identify with.
While the book is definately written for young adults, something that was strongly evident, by the end of the book I was engrossed enough in the story and characters that I was ready to read more. Meyer's has a beautifully descriptive writing style with a talent for subtle suspense, which kept me glued to the pages in search for the next discovery.
Stay tuned for the upcoming reviews of New Moon and Eclipse.
P.S. Harry Potter still wins.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Maple-Glazed Turkey With Gravy
Serves 8 (with leftovers)
Active Time: 30 min. start to finish: 4.75 hr (includes bringing turkey to room temperature, does not include making stock)
If you're eager for a turkey to have a luscious, crisp skin, you'll love this glaze, which takes it to a whole new level-maple syrup caramelizes on the surface, creating a super thin, almost glass like, slightly sticky coating all over. And because the syrup is steeped with black peppercorns before glazing, it adds a nuanced floral quality along with a hint of heat
*1 (14 lb) turkey at room temperature 1 hour, any feathers and quills removed with tweezers or needle nose pliers, and neck and giblets removed and reserved for another use if desired
*2 to 2.5 cups water, divided
*1.5 teaspoons black peppercorns
*2/3 cup Grade B maple syrup
*1/2 cup all-purpose flour
*5 cups turkey stock heated to liquefy if gelled
Equipment: kitchen string, a 17 by 14 inch flameproof roasting pan with a flat rack; a 1 qt. measuring cup, a fat separator (optional)
Make Turkey: Preheat oven to 425 degrees F with rack in lowest position.
*Rinse turkey inside and out, then pat dry. Put turkey on rack in roasting pan and sprinkle turkey cavities and skin with 2 teaspoons salts and 1 teaspoon pepper. Fold neck skin under the body, then tie drumsticks together with kitchen string and tuck wings under the body.
*Add 1 cup water to pan and roast, without basting, 1 hour.
Make a Glaze When Turkey Goes in Oven: Place peppercorns in a small sealable bag or wrap securely in a kitchen towel, then crack with a rolling pin or bottom of a heavy skillet. Transfer to a small heavy saucepan and add syrup, then cook over medium-low heat until heated through. Remove from heat and let syrup steep until ready to glaze turkey.
Glaze Turkey: After turkey has roasted one hour, rotate pan and add 1 cup water to a pan. Roast, without basting, 45 minutes more.
*Just before 45 minutes is up, pour syrup through a small fine-mesh sieve into a small bowl, discarding peppercorns.
*Brush turkey allover with syrup and continue to roast (if bottom of pan is completely dry, add the remaining 1/2 cup water) until an instant read thermometer inserted into fleshy part of thighs (test both, close but not touching bone) registers 170 degrees F, 15 to 20 minutes more (total roasting time: about 2 hours)
*Carefully tilt turkey so juices from inside large cavity run into roasting pan. Let turkey stand, uncovered, 30 minutes (temperature of thigh meat will rise to 175 degrees F)
Make Gravy While Turkey Stands: Straddle roasting pan across 2 burners, then add vinegar and deglaze pan by boiling over high heat, stirring and scraping up brown bits, 2 minutes. Strain through cleaned fine-mesh sieve into separator and let stand until fat rises to the top. Skim off and reserve fat. (If using a fat separator, strain pan juices through sieve into separator and let stand until fat rises to the top, 1 to 2 minutes. Carefully pour pan juices from separator into measuring cup, reserving fat.)
*Heat 6 tablespoons reserved fat (if you don't have enough fat, substitute butter) in a heavy medium saucepan and whisk in flour. Cook roux over medium heat, whisking, 5 minutes. Add pan juices and stock in fast stream, whisking constantly to prevent lumps, then bring to a boil, whisking. Stir in any turkey juices from platter and briskly simmer, whisking occasionally, until gravy is thickened, 10 to 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Check back tomorrow for the Turkey Stock recipe!
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
THREE BAGS FULL by Leonie Swann: A flock of sheep living on a hillside near the Irish village of Glennkill, regularly exposed to literature by their shepherd George, feel well-equipped to investigate murder after they find George dead--pinned to the ground with a spade.
HOT MAHOGANY by Stuart Woods: Stone Barrington, having accepted an assignment to watch over CIA agent Lance Cabot's brother who is suffering from amnesia, finds out that the man he is guarding had stolen gold coins from the South Vietnamese government and may be responsible for the theft of a twenty-four million dollar antique secretary.
THE PIRATE KING by R. A. Salvatore: The Arcane Brotherhood has long held the city of Luskan in their power, but when corruption eats away at their ranks, Captain Deudermont comes to the rescue of a city that has become a safe haven for the Sword Coast's most dangerous pirates.
PAUL OF DUNE by Brian Herbert: Relates the story of Paul Maud'Dib's holy war, set between the action of Frank Herbert's "Dune" and "Dune Messiah," as he builds his empire, questions his own power, and becomes the Messiah while wondering who is plotting against him and if he is going insane.
THE LAUGHTER OF DEAD KINGS by Elizabeth Peters: After her longtime significant other John Tregarth--a former art thief known as Sir John Smythe--is accused of stealing one of Egypt's most valuable treasures, Vicky Bliss searches for clues to prove John's innocence.
INDIGNATION by Philip Roth: Marcus Messner, the nineteen-year-old son of a Newark butcher, must learn to handle life on his own after he flees to Ohio, to attend college and even more to escape his father whose anxiety that Marcus could be sent to fight in the Korean War has made him suffocatingly overprotective.
THE LETTERS by Luanne Rice: Parting ways after the sudden death of their only son, Sam and Hadley West retreat to opposite sides of the country, but the couple exchanges written letters while Sam treks out to the crash site in Alaska via dogsled, and Hadley moves into a slightly haunted house in Maine, with intentions to start painting again.
THROUGH THE EYE OF THE STORM by Cholene Espinoza: Cholene Espinoza recounts the experiences she had while helping people whose lives were destroyed by Hurricane Katrina and shares the lessons she learned about strength, faith, and the healing power of community in the weeks following the storm.
POWER AT SEA A VIOLENT PEACE, 1946-2006 by Lisle A. Rose: Examines the development and importance of sea power from 1945 to 2006, focusing on the United States Navy's role in global politics and conflicts and the impact of key events around the world, including the fall of the Soviet Union and the conflicts in the Middle East, on naval power.
POWER AT SEA THE BREAKING STORM, 1919-1945 by Lisle A. Rose: Examines the development and importance of sea power from 1919 to 1945, discussing the strategies, battles, ships, planes, weapons, and people that influenced power at sea in the years following World War I.
POWER AT SEA A VOILENT PEACE, 1946-2006 by Lisle A. Rose: Examines the development and importance of sea power from 1945 to 2006, focusing on the United States Navy's role in global politics and conflicts and the impact of key events around the world, including the fall of the Soviet Union and the conflicts in the Middle East, on naval power.
THE SNOWBALL: WARREN BUFFETT AND THE BUSINESS OF LIFE by Alice Schroeder: A biography of American investor and philanthropist Warren Buffett, drawing from interviews with Buffett, as well as his wife, children, friends, and business associates to look at his childhood, struggles and triumphs, and the principles and ideas that allowed him to become one of the world's richest people.
THE WORST HARD TIME by Timothy Egan: Recounts the experiences of six families and they communities as they struggle to survive the dust storms that terrorized America's High Plains during the Great Depression.
HERO OF THE UNDER GROUND by Jason Peter: Peter, a star at the University of Nebraska's storied football program in the late 1990s and a first-round NFL draft pick, details his short, frenzied life as a drug user and veteran of the treatment center circuit.
Monday, November 17, 2008
1. Sail, James Patterson
2. Fearless Fourteen, Janet Evanovich
3. Smoke Screen, Sandra Brown
4. Tribute, Nora Roberts
5. Sundays at Tiffany's, James Patterson and Gabrielle Charbonnet
6. The Story of Edgar Sawtelle, David Wroblewski
7. The Appeal, John Grisham
8. The Whole Truth, David Baldacci
9. Where Are You Now?, Mary Higgins Clark
10. Rogue, Danielle Steel
11. The Lucky One, Nicholas Sparks
12. Tailspin, Catherine Coulter
13. 7th Heaven, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
14. Devil Bones, Kathy Reichs
15. Moscow Rules, Daniel Silva
1. Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace . . . One School at a Time, Greg Mortenson & David Oliver Relin
2. Audition: A Memoir, Barbara Walters
3. When You Are Engulfed in Flames, David Sedaris
4. The Last Lecture, Randy Pausch with Jeffrey Zaslow
5. Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia, Elizabeth Gilbert
6. sTORI Telling, Tori Spelling
7. Are You There Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea, Chelsea Handler
8. Hot, Flat and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution - and How It Can Renoew America, L. Friedman
9. A New Earth: Awakening to You Life's Purpose, Eckhart Tolle
10. The Secret, Rhonda Byrne
11. The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream, Barack Obama
12. The Glass Castle: A Memoir
13. Change Your Brain, Change Your Life: The Breakthrough Program for Conguering Anxiety, Depression, Obsessiveness, Anger and Impulsiveness, Daniel G. Amen
14. Fleeced: How Barack Obama, Media Mockery of Terrorist Threats, Liberals Who Want to Kill Talk Radio, the Do-Nothing Congress, Companies the Help Iran, and Washingont Lobbyists for Foreign Governments Are Scamming Us . . . and What To Do About It, Dick Morris & Eileen McGann
15. The Post-American World, Fareed Zakaria
*Compiled by Library Journal from rural, urban and suburban libraried across the U.S. Originally printed in Library Journal, November 15th Issue
Friday, November 14, 2008
Thursday, November 13, 2008
NebraskAccess is another free service you can utilize as a patron of the Alliance Public Library. It is provided by the Nebraska Library Commission and includes online access to thousands of current periodicals such as magazines, journals and newspapers as well as reading recommendations, geneology tools and business information. Full text articles are available in html and pdf format from a large variety of resources.
The NebraskAccess eLibrary contains information from 200 newspapers, 1500 magazines and 300 books. NebraskAccess also makes available the Wilson Web research database, which is a wonderful tool for finding scholastic and scholarly research articles, perfect for writing papers.
NebraskAccess not only helps our patrons search periodicals online, but it also aids in finding new fiction books to read. The Fiction Connection link allows readers to search for new reading material based on genre, subject, age group, character type, setting and more.
To take advantage of this free service, simply go to www.nlc.state.ne.us/nebraskaccess and login using your current drivers license number.
You'll likely be seeing a few more posts about the features of NebraskAccess in the future, so check back in!
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Enzo, the dog of professional race car driver Denny Swift, recalls the memories of his life and shares his insight into the human condition that he learned from observing his owner.
Kathy recommends Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
When seventeen-year-old Bella leaves Phoenix to live with her father in Forks, Washington, she meets an exquisitely handsome boy at school for whom she feels an overwhelming attraction and who she comes to realize is not wholly human.
Dena recommends No Ordinary Time by Doris Kearns Goodwin
Discusses the distinct leadership roles of the President and First Lady during the war years.
Anthony recommends Brisingr by Christopher Paolini
Fourteen-year-old Susie Salmon, the victim of a sexual assault and murder, looks on from the afterlife as her family deals with their grief, and waits for her killer to be brought to some type of justice.
Ronda recommends Left Behind by Tim LaHay
Airline captain Rayford Steele, stunned when over one hundred passengers vanish from his plane in the blink of an eye, quickly realizes the Rapture his wife had been telling him about--an event in which Jesus would return to take his followers to Heaven before they die--has happened and he has been left behind.
Jan recommends Feels Like Far by Linda Hasselstrim
Award-winning author Linda Hasselstrom paints an intimate portrait of family, love, work, nature, and survival against the backdrop of the far-flung South Dakota prairie.
Sean recommends Chosen by Ted Dekker
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
I haven't used the book club services yet, so if you give it a try, send me an email and let me know what you think.
FACES OF FEAR by John Saul: Fifteen-year-old Alison Shaw reluctantly agrees to let her new stepfather perform plastic surgery to make her more beautiful, but when Alison discovers a photo of his first wife and realizes he is turning her into the dead woman's image, Alison is frightened and sets out to uncover his true motives.
RULES OF DECEPTION by Christopher Reich: Doctors Without Borders surgeon and mountaineer Jonathan Ransom, arriving at a Swiss train station to claim two bags belonging to his recently deceased wife, finds himself becoming the target of law enforcement personnel and holding the key to a deadly conspiracy which he races to uncover.
THE LOST ART OF KEEPING SECRETS by Eva Rice: Eighteen-year-old Penelope Wallace's uneventful life with her brother and widowed mother becomes much livelier when she meets Charlotte Ferris and is initiated into the exciting social scene of post-World War II London.
REMEMBER ME by Sophie Kinsella: Lexi Smart wakes up after a car accident with no memory of the past three years, unaware of how she managed to land a gorgeous husband, the perfect job, and a fabulous house, and as she struggles to adjust to her unfamiliar life, she begins to wonder if she was ever really happy.
YOU HAD ME AT GOOD-BYE by Tracey Bateman: Aspiring editor Dancy Ames must redefine her life when she's fired by her publisher, and as she tries to decide what direction she wants her new life to take, she realizes she has the chance to create her own fairy tale ending with the job and the man of her dreams.
TIME IS A RIVER by Mary Alice Monroe: Mia Landan, recovering from cancer and the shock of discovering her husband's infidelity, leaves her home and takes refuge in a fishing cabin, recently inherited by her fishing instructor Belle Carson, and becomes caught up in trying to learn the truth about Belle's grandmother.
OH DANNY BOY by Rhys Bowen: Molly Murphy, an immigrant at the turn-of-the-century, is contemplating giving up her work as a private investigator, but she agrees help when Captain Daniel Sullivan begs for her help in clearing his name.
HOT, FLAT, AND CROWDED by Thomas L. Friedman: Argues that the United States needs to adopt an environmentally friendly national strategy to be healthier, wealthier, and more secure, innovative, and productive.
THE LAST LECTURE by Randy Pausch: Computer science professor Randy Pausch, who has been diagnosed with terminal cancer, discusses how to overcome obstacles in one's life and achieve one's dreams.
THE WAR WITHIN by Bob Woodward: Presents an in-depth look into the secret debates, tension, and distrust within the White House, the Pentagon, and State Department from mid-2006 to mid-2008 over the way the war in Iraq has been handled.
SEE NO EVIL by Robert Baer: CIA field officer Robert Baer recounts the experiences he had while fighting terrorism in the back alleys of the Middle East and shares what he has learned about how terrorism works and how the CIA's work has been sabotaged by Washington politics.
THREE LITTLE WORDS by Ashley Rhodes-Courter: Ashley Rhodes-Courter provides an account of her life; focusing on the nine years she spent in Florida's foster care system after being removed from her mother at the age of three, and explaining how her life changed after she was adopted.
BIPOLAR DISORDER DEMYSTIFIED by Lana R. Castle: Lana Castle describes her personal experiences living with bipolar disorder, discusses the difficulties in diagnosing the illness, and offers suggestions on how to cope with manic depression and other mood disorders.
THE DEVIL YOU KNOW by Robert Baer: Former CIA operative Baer challenges the conventional wisdom regarding Iran in this timely and provocative analysis, arguing that Iran has already half-won its undeclared 30-year war with the United States and is rapidly becoming a superpower.
Monday, November 10, 2008
Set in rural South Carolina during the civil rights movement, The Secret Life of Bees tells the story of a young girl, Lily's, quest for her past. After fleeing racists with her black care giver, Lily finds herself in the home of three generous women, where she learns about bee keeping, love, feminine power and herself.
The movie hasn't made it's way to our theater yet, so you still have time to check it out before it gets here.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
THE SHACK by William P. Young: After Missy is abducted during a vacation and evidence of her murder shows up at a shack in the forests of Oregon, Mackenzie Philips, Missy's father, receives a strange note inviting him to return to the scene of the tragedy where he wrestles with nightmarish religious questions.
THE ROGUE by Danielle Steel: Maxine Williams' amicable divorce from her husband, Blake, has allowed them to remain friends, taking frequent vacations together while Blake still enjoys his fun-loving lifestyle but when Maxine falls in love with another man, her relationship with Blake is forced to change, causing Blake to wonder if he is ready to give Maxine up for good.
DEATH ANGEL by Linda Howard: Drea Rousseau, a beauty with a taste for the finer things in life, is forced to run after betraying her boyfriend, crime lord Rafael Salinas, who sends the Assassin after her, and when fate intervenes to give her another chance, she teams up with the most dangerous man she has ever met, risking her life and heart to bring Salinas down.
THE ASSASSIN by Stephen Coonts: Special agent Tommy Carmellini attempts to infiltrate a group of political leaders in order to find the person responsible for leaking key information to Al Qaeda leader Abu Qasim and track down Qasim before the terrorist can unleash further destruction on the world.
SILKS by Dick Francis: Defense lawyer Geoffrey Mason agrees to counsel jockey, Steve Mitchell, who has been accused of killing another rider and soon finds himself involved in a web of lies and violence.
THE STORY OF EDGAR SAWTELLE by David Wroblewski: A tale reminiscent of "Hamlet" that also celebrates the alliance between humans and dogs follows speech-disabled Wisconsin youth Edgar, who bonds with three yearling canines and struggles to prove that his sinister uncle is responsible for his father's death.
THE DANGEROUS DAYS OF DANIEL X by James Patterson: Fifteen-year-old Daniel has followed in his parents' footsteps as the Alien Hunter, exterminating beings on The List of Alien Outlaws on Terra Firma, but when he faces his first of the top ten outlaws, the very existence Earth and another planet are at stake.
IT’S GETTING UGLY OUT THERE by Jack Cafferty: The author presents a series of uncensored remarks on everything from his perception of government politicians, the two-party system, the war in Iraq, and illegal immigration.
DEWEY by Vicki Myron: A small kitten was stuffed in the library book drop and found by the director, Vicki Myron. Gradually it won the hearts of the staff, then the town, then the state and so on to become know around the world. For nineteen years, he charmed people and became more than a friend.
THE AMERICAN HISTORY COOKBOOK by Mark H, Zanger: Traces the history of American cooking through commentary and recipes, featuring fifty chronologically arranged chapters on historical themes and topics, covering a period that ranges from 1200 through the 1970s, each with step-by-step instructions for three or more recipes.
MY PERSONAL BEST by John Wooden: John Wooden describes his life, from a farm boy in Indiana to an award-winning basketball coach for the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), where he worked for twenty-seven years, and examines all of the people who influenced his life, including his father, wife, students, and players.
DISPATCHES FROM THE EDGE by Anderson Cooper: News correspondent Anderson Cooper offers an inside look at some of the political, military, social, and natural crises that have defined modern times, sharing the experiences he had while covering events around the world.
DEAR MR. PRESIDENT LETTERS TO THE OVAL OFFICE: Presents a collection of letters and correspondence sent to various presidents of the United States while they served in office, from George Washington to Bill Clinton.
NATIVE UNIVERSE VOICES OF INDIAN AMERICA: Presents a collection of illustrated photographs depicting the art and cultures of native peoples of the Western Hemisphere from ancient times to the twenty-first century.
On using real people and events . . .
On writing from a female point of view . . .
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
This week's pick is Appaloosa, based on the book by Robert B. Parker. We have this book both on audio CD and in print.
Monday, November 3, 2008
A modern classic, The Kite Runner vividly illustrates the devastating struggle and complicated culture of the Afhganistan people. Below, you find a few videos in which Khaled Hosseini talks about his writing. This will be the first in a series of videos to be posted throughout the week, so check back in.
On Writing . . .
On His Medical Career . . .