Dishing Up Minnesota: 150 Recipes from the Land of 10,000 Lakes (Paperback)
Dishing Up Minnesota: 150 Recipes from the Land of 10,000 Lakes (Paperback)
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A joy to read, this cookbook celebrates the culinary traditions of ethnic groups that have settled in Minnesota, both recently and in its earlier days. Mouth-watering photos by David Paul Schmit tempt the reader to try the recipes. The emphasis is always on local, and this book does not disappoint in this regard. Some of the recipes are traditional Minnesotan, recalling the state's "hot dish" culture. But the state's many new immigrant groups -- Southeast Asian, east African, and Hispanic -- are well represented in the book as are those who have been in Minnesota for decades (as evidenced by Ojibwe squash and bean stew, Iron Range pasties, Swedish meatballs, and porketta roast. Author Theresa Marrone celebrates the state's wild bounty in her recipes as well as its diverse farm products and new culinary developments, such as the state's craft breweries. I would not hesitate to give this book to someone for a snapshot of new and traditional cooking in Minnesota.
The Mist (DVD)
The Mist (DVD)
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The Mist was one story in a collections of stories by Stephen King, and I have been waiting for someone to make the movie for a very long time. I am happy to say that it kept pretty true to the book, except for the ending. I was a little dissapointed to see that Stephan King did not make a cameo appearance as is his custom. I would not recommend this movie for anyone under 13. Now I'm just waiting for someone to make a movie out of "The Cell" another King book (read it three times)
Nashville Symphony Orchestra - Daugherty: Metropolis Symphony,  Deux Ex Machina
Nashville Symphony Orchestra - Daugherty: Metropolis Symphony, Deux Ex Machina
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I continue to be blown away by Iowa-born composer Michael Daugherty. His music tells a uniquely American story and that appeals to me very much. Most recently it was a recording of his Fire and Blood, a muscular violin concerto inspired by Diego Rivera that grabbed my attention. This time it?s the antic and frantic Metropolis Symphony, an orchestral extravaganza inspired by the 1938 debut of Superman in comic books. I love the very notion of a giant orchestral work inspired by American pop culture and can almost see the sneers of Euro-snobs and the pasty-faced, self-appointed American guardians of modern music.Metropolis Symphony is in five movements, each one inspired by a Superman character or theme. Lex, the opening movement, is a deliriously diabolic romp for solo violin and percussion-laced orchestra that captures the manic evil of arch-baddie Lex Luthor. Here?s the smack-mouth drive that made Fire and Blood so thrilling. The solo part is played with guts by the Nashville Symphony?s Mary Kathryn Van Osdale. More subdued but equally evocative is Krypton, an eerie tone poem that opens with sirens, gongs and disturbing string glissandi. There?s more terrifying solo fiddling, snippets of what sounds like ?Silent Night? and an apocalyptic finale that gives the Rite of Spring a run for its money. MXYZPTLK, the nasty imp from the fifth dimension, is a mercurial scherzo-like third movement that showcases the orchestra?s flute section. The fourth movement entitled Oh Lois! evokes the comic?s heroine alongside Clark Kent. Here?s another wildfire rave-up with a tempo marked ?faster than a speeding bullet? that plays out as a delicious example of orchestral slapstick. The closing Red Cape Tango is a moving elegy that evolves into a tango-inspired dance of death with Daugherty quoting the Dies irae.Daugherty?s Deus ex Machina for piano and orchestra, which rounds out the recording, is the composer?s take on the world of trains with each movement focusing on a train or railway. The first movement Fast Forward conjures up images of the avant-garde and displays the rhythmic firestorm that is found in many of Daugherty?s works. The second movement Train of Tears refers to the funeral train that carried Abraham Lincoln?s body through seven states. Here?s Daugherty in an elegiac mood that will remind some of Copland but there is nothing derivative here, Daugherty?s superb orchestration and emotional depth rise to the top throughout. The finale, Night Stream, is Daugherty?s tribute to the coal-burning locomotives of the Norfolk and Western lines and here?s more of the hard-driving, blues-inflected virtuosity that make his music so thrilling.The knuckle-busting piano part is played with breath-taking skill by Terence Wilson and the Nashville Symphony, conducted by its new music director Giancarlo Guerrero,proves once again that it is one of America?s finest orchestras. Superbly engineered and nicely packaged this is another gem from one of our finest composers.