A Hockey Primer for Black Girls

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So as I mentioned in the Valentines Day post, half-Canadian hubby and I took in a hockey game as our V-day date night activity.

I had already been to a hockey game once back in high school when the team first came to the area.  Quite a few of the under aged players were in classes where I went to school so I decided to take my lil’ bro and sister.  I don’t remember much about that game except it was a fun outing with the clan.  Oh wait – it was loud.  That, I remember.

Anyway, attending a game as an adult I have to say it was a fun activity to do together.  I got dressed up (not too much though, I mean, it is just a hockey game) and enjoyed taking in the scene.

Even with the gentlemen in the row in front of us graciously filling us in on the finer points of the action of the game (thanks Fellas!) – I still had almost no idea what was happening.  So, I vowed to learn at least the very basics before I go back again and this is what I came up with:

Basic Rules of Hockey:

  • There are 3 periods in a hockey game lasting 20 minutes each for a total of 60 minutes per game, unless extended by overtime and/or a shoot out.
  • Object of the game is to score more goals than the opposing team (duh!) by the time the game ends.
  • There’s a total of 6 players on each team including the goaltender (goalie).  The “main” guy on each team is called the “forward.”  Think of him as the quarterback in football (like Russell Wilson) or point guard in basketball (like Kobe Bryant).

The rest of the game is each team trying to make opportunities for themselves or their team mates to score on the opposing team.  Either by body checking from the front hip or torso of the opposing player and only if that player is in possession of the puck, by being the first to get to a unguarded puck and take possession, or by straight up stealing that shit.

Hockey No-No’s (main issues that will stop the clock):

Offsides – When a player gets to the offensive zone before the puck does OR if the puck is passed across the blue line and the center line.

Icing – If the puck is passed from behind the center red line and makes it untouched all the way to the opposing goal line and then an opposing player goes for it.

There are of course other penalties that will stop the clock, mostly having to do with undue or dangerous force but that goes beyond my understanding of the game.  You’ll know it when you see it.

Black Girl Tips for Enjoying Hockey:

1) Unless your seats are very good (and even then, I wouldn’t recommend it) DO NOT go high.  The puck is simply too small, and moves way too quickly for stoner eyes to follow.

2) Everyone seems to hate the refs.  At least they did at the Silvertips/Thuderbirds game I went to.  They got booed.  A lot.  Don’t be skeered, at least they’re not booing you.

3) Be prepared for the madness that ensues when the home team makes a goal.  I wasn’t ready for it, and was halfway to the ground in the “duck and cover” position before I realized it was part of the game.  I was relived to find no one got shot.

4) I am 99.9% sure I was literally (and by literally, I mean the Oxford definition) the only Black person in the entire building.  I didn’t even see any Black custodial staff.  This, of course,  It’s nothing new – but was a little unnerving.  I felt kind of like this guy:

black-hockey-fan

“They told me this was a basketball game.”

5) Black hockey players are rare and they probably don’t play for your home team.  In any case,  know em’, love em’ support em.’ 

And…that’s it!  Regardless of whether or not you’re into sports – (lawd, child, unless it’s the Seahawks I don’t care) you’ll at least have a good time socializing in a new environment.  Maybe catch some blood lust from the fights that are sure to break out on the ice!

Y’all ever see any black folks at a hockey game?

xxKendra

Chocolate Coconut Custard Cream Pie – Kind of Keto

The thought of a coconut cream pie popped in my head and never left.  I had my mouth all fixed for it, but I was not willing to break my fast from refined flour and sugar enough to buy a commercial one.

A little trick that’s kept me on the keto path is promising myself that if I want something that badly, think on it then and only then I may have it, IF I make it from scratch.  Besides, the conventionally sweetened pastries that I used to love so much never taste as good as I remember.  Then I feel punked, and I HATE that.

So – I set out to make the most refined flour and sugar free coconut cream pie I could knowing from the outset there was no way, no how, I was going to be employing the use of fake sugar in such a labor intensive project (fuck that noise!).

The Research

First place to start is the crust.  Finding a recipe for a grain free crust that would mimic graham cracker or shortbread crust was easy enough.  Amazing things are happening with almond flour.  www.againstallgrain.com has an amazing paleo Honey Graham Cracker Pie Crust recipe that was the jam!

Then I thought since I was gonna do it, why not do it big?  What’s a dessert without chocolate?  Like masturbating with a dildo when you *really* wanted some dick, that’s what.  I surfed  the ‘net and decided to make an amalgam of different chocolate/ganache recipes into a filling (recipe below).

The tricky part came with the coconut layer.  I would need a coconut cream layer that would a) be full of coconutty flavor and b) have some texture to it that would stand up to the chocolate layer on the bottom and still keep its shape.  Because, texture.

This, in itself wasn’t so difficult but try as I might, I couldn’t find a low carb filling that didn’t use fake sugar or those weird sugar alcohols.  I don’t believe in that shit.  Yes, my carb count will take a hit in the end but for a decadent mostly legal indulgence – I’ll allow it.  Besides, sugar alcohols have no business in baked goods.

This process did take a while so I did what I always do when I’m playing in the kitchen: poured myself a glass of wine, put a kung fu flick on the laptop and got started.

The Method

The Crust

I found a really fantastic grain free almond/coconut flour Honey Graham Cracker Pie Crust crust by Danielle Walker at AgainstAllGrain.com.  Its actually the easiest crust grain full or grain free I’ve ever made.  Which was an added bonus because I *hate* making crust by scratch.

Next, the chocolate ganache layer – 

Chocolate Ganache Layer

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1 1/4 C. Heavy Whipping Cream

1/3 C. Sugar in the Raw

2 TBS Raw Honey

1 tsp Vanilla Extract (I used Bourbon Vanilla extract)

6 to 8 ounces good ass unsweetened chocolate broken into small pieces.  I used a Ghirardelli bar I whacked against my counter a few times.

Directions:

  1. Add cream, honey and sugar to a medium saucepan over medium heat, whisk together.   Barely bring to a boil then turn off heat. Stir in vanilla extract.  NOTE: if raw sugar has not dissolved keep heat on low and whisk until dissolved.  Turn off heat and proceed to next step.
  2. Add chocolate and let it sit until chocolate has melted.  Bust out your hand mixer to ensure it’s smooth.  I used the whisk attachment on medium/low speed for 1 – 1 1/2 minutes

Pour filling into crust and place it somewhere away from heat to cool to room temperature.

The Coconut Custard Cream Layer –

Coconut Custard Cream Layer

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1/2 C. Sugar in the Raw

2 TBS Cornstarch (I did cheat with the cornstartch)

2 TBS Coconut Flour (not meal)

1/4 tsp Salt ( I used natural sea salt)

3/4 C. Heavy Whipping Cream

1/4 C. Coconut Cream

1 Can (13.4 oz) Refrigerated Coconut Milk (not the kind in a box, the REAL stuff)

4 Large Egg Yolks (carefully seperated)

1 TBS Real Vanilla Extract (I used Organics Bourbon Vanilla Extract)

Directions:

  1. Heat (but do not boil) 1/2 C. of the cream in a small bowl or heat proof mug.  Whisk coconut flour and cornstarch into milk until dissolved and set aside.
  2. In a medium sauce pan over medium heat add sugar and salt, slowly add coconut flour/cream mixture whisk until incorporated.
  3. Gradually add the remaining cream and continue to whisk until coconut flour and cornstarch has dissolved.  Add the can of coconut milk, and 4 egg yolks while whisking constantly.
  4. Cook over medium heat continuing to whisk constantly until you start to see the first large bubble surface – about 4 – 5 minutes.  Reduce heat to low, and continue whisking and cooking for another 1 minute.  Remove from heat.
  5. Once custard cream is almost room temperature, give it a stir (or skim the skin from the top) before layering it on top of the chocolate layer in the almond flour crust.

PROTIP: If you want to cool your custard faster in the ‘fridge, you can let the pan cool until it can be handled then put a layer of cling wrap directly on top of the custard.  This will prevent a skin from forming on top.

Then, I toasted some unsweetened coconut, whipped some heavy whipping cream and threw it on top with a couple of sprinkles of unsweetened cocoa.  And voila! Chocolate coconut cream pie, as keto as I could make it without sacrificing the spirit of the pie.

NOTE: Now, if you wanted to make your layers truly keto, you could.  I just can’t stomach sugar substitutes.  It feels wrong.  if I’m gonna take the time to make a pie – I sure as fuck am gonna use real sweetener.  Sorry, I just. can’t. even with the fake shit.

ANOTHER NOTE: This is a decadent dessert.  Not low cal, not low fat, not really that low carb.  You might have to IF for the day to make it fit your macros for the day.  I gave away half the pie to our bachelor friend but if you keep portions in check, it should serve 12.  Or 8 if you’re not tryna’ share.  Double nutrition info for 8 instead of 12.  Taken from recipe calculator at myfitnesspal.com.  Check the nutrition* below:

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Okay, presentation isn't *great* but I'm working on it!

Okay, presentation isn’t *great* but I’m working on it!

Nutrition Facts
Servings 12.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 359
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 27 g 42 %
Saturated Fat 19 g 96 %
Monounsaturated Fat 1 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 140 mg 47 %
Sodium 37 mg 2 %
Potassium 32 mg 1 %
Total Carbohydrate 26 g 9 %
Dietary Fiber 4 g 14 %
Sugars 19 g
Protein 4 g 8 %
Vitamin A 13 %
Vitamin C 0 %
Calcium 1 %
Iron 4 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

*Nutrition info DOES NOT include extracts, salt, or baking soda.

Awkward Black Girl Explains it All – Book Review

I just finished the audio version of The Misadventures of the Awkward Black Girl by Issa Rae.

The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl

In case you’re two-thousand-and-late and aren’t hip to Issa Rae’s wildly popular and hilariously insightful web series The Misadventures of AWKWARD Black Girl, treat yo’ self, and educate yo’ self by heading to YouTube right now to binge watch!

I was delighted to find her new book The Misadventures of the Awkward Black Girl on Audible.com read by the author herself.  Oh yes, she had me giggling at my desk.  Thankfully,  I’m in a dungeon-like cubicle and didn’t have to worry too much about looking like I was headed for the straight jacket guffawing at my computer.

This is certainly a must read and an even more entertaining listen.  I especially loved her chapter on “Connecting with Other Blacks.”  As the title may suggest, this chapter is not just for Black folks.  In my opinion, it provides some levity to a tricky topic by serving as a fun, easy to digest primer on the spectrum of different types of Blacks.  If you’re another Black person, you will absolutely identify yourself in at least one type of Black.  If you’re a non-Black – it’s a fantastic way to gain a little knowledge on the different type of Black folks there are out there.  Best of all,  Issa’s explanation may help to illuminate a universal Black truth: we. are not. all like “that.”  Issa Rae has appropriately dubbed this flavor of Black “Ratchet Black” or if you please, the previously popularized “Ghetto Black.”

The Misadventures of the Awkward Black Girl is not a militant account of what it’s like to be a strong African American in a whitewashed society.  If that’s what you’re looking for, might I suggest a good ol’ Black literature classic like The Autobiography of Malcolm X as told by Alex Haley or Native Son by Richard Wright (both amazingly deep books, btw)?  No, Issa Rae enlightens and delights the reader with background of her (very normal) multi-national upbringing.  She leads us to conclude she is a product of her regional environment and familial influence (which may, to some, appear to be the straddling of two worlds) and how this experience has come to exist in the singular body that is simply Issa.  She makes no apologies for being Black, or awkward, or who she is now.  In an uproariously funny manner.  What she doesn’t focus on (say perhaps the Black experience or the Black condition) speaks to the fact that Issa Rae, like a lot of us Blacks (Rachet Blacks excluded), really are just like everyone else.  I might be speaking out of turn as a non-Black, but I suspect Issa does more to capture what we all can identify with as a child of the 90’s on the cusp of technology take-over, than alienate every member outside of a minority group with the differences between races.

In fact, by the end of her narration, you won’t even notice she’s Black.  Just kidding!  That is however, a variation of one of those “things” girls like us get used to hearing.

I highly recommend giving this a read or a listen.  Issa Rae is amazingly talented and has a way with communicating the plight of the unsteriotypically Black girl that is tragically underrepresented in every media outlet ever that I just can’t get enough of.  Besides, you’d be “helping a sista’ out.”

Issa Rae, on behalf of Awkward Black/Nerdy Black hybrids everywhere – I salute you.

You can find her book on the all of the conventional channels: Amazon (even Kindle!), Barns & Noble in hardcover or nookbook.  Get to it!

xxKDUBxx

Girl, you don’t match! Pattern mixing part 2.

So, I tried it again.

This time I put a little more thought into it and re-read the rules of pattern mixing so that I was fully aware of the rules I was breaking (be wrong, strong! Remember?) I did cling onto two rules for dear life though:

1. Mix patterns from the same color family. Check – except maybe the gold in the scarf and the neutral beige of the base of the leopard print, but it’ll do.

2. Space the patterns out. Check, kinda’.  I discovered with my last attempt at pattern mixing, I’m just not that comfortable mixing more than two patterns.  Any they musn’t be right on top of each other.  Baby steps.

PRO TIP – This is also a rule I find applies to wearing colors (clothing, accessories, or make-up) that are closely related but just a shade apart.  Space them shits out!

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Cookie likes it!

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Even the spray bottle is in on it!

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I finished up the look with some pretty neutral eye make up, and matching (breaking rules again!) red lipstick.  Another PRO TIP – This type of red was difficult to find a lipstick match for.  It’s not a true red, but is very cool.  A coral based red did the trick.

One nuance of note: Regardless of the outfit being a success or not, I was feeling pretty fierce that day.  I suspect I could have chosen clashing colors for the whole damn outfit and still been a bad bitch.  Confidence is just that good.

What do you think?  Did I nail it or do I need some more practice?