Tag Archives: champagne

Wishing I were more of a foodie.

I thought it would be nice just to talk about some delightful things we consumed over the holidays. Most of them were made by my wife because I suck at kitchen management. I just stay out of her way, or if she needs help, she’s learned to give me exact orders and I just obey. I do get credit for taking care of the Thanksgiving Day turkey — my one skill is in cooking large quantities of dead animal flesh, so as long as I take care of that part, she’s happy doing the rest. And then I clean the dishes.

Eleya made a wonderful rack of lamb, roasted with peppercorns, for Christmas Eve dinner. For some reason our oven ran strangely and forced her to serve the lamb a bit at a time, moving in form the edges as they reached the perfect stage of rare to medium rare that good lamb demands. All ended well and people were happy to come back for seconds (or thirds). She also made some fantastic green beans sauteed with shallots and vermouth, and the best garlic mashed potatoes I think I’ve ever had. Ever. Did I mention I made the salad? Yeah baby, stand back.

We had a really tasty champagne for New Year’s Eve, a de Margerie Grand Cru Brut. I think I might slightly prefer the Montaudon Classe ‘M’ that we had last year, but the de Margerie was quite good. It was very crisp with some apple notes, and probably lots of other stuff a better wine or champagne taster would be able to pinpoint.

We’d also decided, since we were spending NYE at home, to enjoy grown-up food after the kids were in bed. We ate sparingly at dinner so we could enjoy a nice basket of treats that were sent by an out-of-town friend — gourmet crackers, cheese, salami, mustard, and some nice chocolates. I think next year I may go out and hand-select these sorts of treats and pair them with the champagne we choose to ring in 2010, because it was really lovely.

Today she made some crystallized ginger which I’m really looking forward to trying when it’s fully done. It’s currently drying, after which it will be coated lightly with confectioner’s sugar. If you haven’t tried crystallized ginger, it’s wonderful — sweet and tangy but with a nice touch of spicy hotness. Despite what you might expect from the spicy heat, ginger is also quite exceptional for curing an acid stomach or heartburn — no kidding! Try it next time you have a sour tummy; you can find it at most grocers.

I also watched too many episodes of Iron Chef with my daughter on our one “couch potato” day. Her favorite subjects are science and cooking (go figure). I saw some really amazing ways to prepare buffalo and venison, and thankfully none of them involved ice cream.

Drawing to a close.

The blog’s been pretty quiet for the last week because I took some time to just relax, spend time with family and friends, and enjoy the company’s holiday shutdown period.

This has been a very eventful year for me and my family, including my moving from the public to the private sector to take a job with Red Hat, many travels (including my first trip to Germany!), family events including death and birth, and helping my mom through some tough times recuperating from her back surgery, not to mention the financial and political tumult that affected everyone over the course of the year, two big releases for the Fedora Project, and all the work that went thereto. But all in all, 2008 has actually been quite a memorable year for me, and I’m looking forward to what 2009 will bring.

Right off the bat, I’ll get to see old and new Fedora friends at our FUDCon in Boston in about a week or so. It will be a fantastic event and I’m very much looking forward to participating in it, after all the planning! There’s something very fulfilling about seeing people come together at these events to renew bonds, to create new and exciting features, and to further break down barriers to free software contribution.

There’s no doubt in my mind that, now more than ever, Fedora is the epicenter of progress in FOSS, and that progress is powered by our entire community working together with our multitudinous upstream partners. Software freedom and community don’t come free of cost; they’re endeavors built on the hard work and tenacity of hundreds of thousands of FOSS contributors. The work of those contributors calls for gratitude and respect, and they continue to be my focus in Fedora.

When I get together with contributors at FUDCon, it’s always a good reminder to me that words must be backed up by deeds. Pledges to community and freedom too easily ring hollow without the accompanying march of progress through contribution. I’m constantly heartened by the enthusiasm shown by our community members at these events for making real progress in FOSS, with constant dedication to the spirit of openness that free software provides and demands. I’ll do my best this year to meet that enthusiasm with my own, to respect your hard work with more of the same, and to help you keep creating and promoting “freedom, friends, features, first.”

Wherever you are and whatever you’re doing as you ring in the New Year, I hope 2009 brings you and your loved ones success, fulfillment, and happiness. Now let’s break out the good bubbly!