Corban Doing a Stunt

Choosing your first Japanese knife

Okay, so which knife should I get?

There are a bajillion possibilities, but I will concentrate on two classes of knives: gateway knives and step up knives in the gyuto style. The gateway knife is under $100 and will whet your appetite for Japanese knives. You could live quite happily with it forever, or you may want to get a better quality knife—the step up knife. Step up knives generally range from $200-$300, (you can go as high as $1000, but you're no longer paying for cutting performance; you're paying for art.). Note that many knife makers have several lines of knives at different price points with different steels and quality.

Gateway knives

This list is by no means exhaustive. It just lists a few of the more common recommendations.

A Primer on Japanese Waterstones

"So I opted for the awesomeness of this Japanese steel you were talking about. I mean that Tojiro DP gyuto is cheap! ... What? I can't just sharpen it with a pull through sharpener? I can damage the blade with the steel that came with my Henckels set? I need "special" sharpening stones? How much are we talking here? MORE THAN THE KNIFE COSTS? WHY DID I LISTEN TO YOU?!?!?!?!"

A Primer on Japanese Knives

When Jen and I first got married, I registered for Wusthof knives because, of course, they were so much superior to Henckels. I knew there were better knives in the world, especially from Japan, but they seemed to cost my firstborn, and I didn't really know how to buy them in the first place, so I was happy with my selection. Soon after (but not soon enough to return the Wusthofs) the Japanese invaded a Bed Bath and Beyond near you with a little help from Alton Brown. I had a strong case of Shun-lust, but being the practical, thrifty person that I am, I made do.

Fast forward *cough* years, and the Boss says something to the effect of, "maybe we should get another chef's knife so that when we're both needing it, we don't have to keep waiting." Naturally I knew that this was my chance to acquire a Japanese knife. So a week of underslept nights later, I purchased my first Japanese knife. (Review to come.)

I will be documenting what I found in a series of posts, so that I don't have to do it again, and perhaps it will help you, dear reader, acquire a Japanese instrument of cutting joy more quickly than I did.

Kale Detox Salad

This is Jen's new go-to snack and meal course. There are tons of variations on this, but this one is ours. If eating the garnish doesn't seem appealing, it didn't to me either, but this salad really is quite good. It also holds up in the fridge very well.

Video of me prep chefing the veggies.

Dressing:

  • Zest of one lemon
  • Juice of one lemon (~50-60 mL)
  • 1tsp honey (we go heavy on the honey)

Lo-Carb, Gluten Free, Protein, Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

We got this recipe from Jen's mom who found it in a cookbook in her library, but has never been able to find it again. They are surprisingly good considering they have evil sucralose in them.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter, unsalted, softened
  • 1 cup sucralose (only use 3/4 cup if using sweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cup Sucanat ("natural cane sugar" dehydrated)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups unsweetened shredded dried coconut
  • 1 cup vanilla whey protein powder (use 1 tsp vanilla extract if using unflavored)

Guacamole - How to make awesome guac

Many people are intimidated by guacamole. Here's the Heymanator, sure-fire method of getting awesome guacamole every time.

  1. Start with good avocados, typically Haas, and they should be ripe (i.e., soft). We have had great luck with Costco avocados.
  2. Half the avocados, seed them, and scoop them into a bowl with a flat surface.
  3. Mash them up until they are relatively smooth. I like to use a potato masher (hence the flat bottom).

December 2013 Newsletter

It has been 4 years since our last newsletter. As you may recall, we were just preparing for the birth of our first son at the time. Logan was born right on schedule, March 25th, 2010, and our lives have never been the same since. Logan has blessed us in more ways than we could have imagined. He was a very happy and easy going baby who started walking at 9 months of age. He is now almost 4 years old and just started attending preschool this summer. He really seems to enjoy school and showing off all he learns.

Open Letter to Allison and Twitch

Dear Allison and Twitch,

I was saddened to hear the motivation for Allison's choreography with Fik Shun, so I thought I would share a few of my thoughts.

Allison,

You are one of my favorite dancers. I have always thought that you were robbed, being eliminated after two of the best dance performances of all time (your Tango and Lyrical Hip Hop). You also had one of the best West Coast Swings on the show and definitely the coolest pants. I was excited to see you back on the show as an All-Star. The memory of your dance performances has brightened my life for nine years.

Liberty Classroom

Subscribe to Tom Woods's Liberty Classroom

Tom Woods is one of my favorite speakers (and authors). He's a libertarian historian with a PhD from Columbia (undergrad at Harvard) if that's possible to believe. He has an interest in economics and is especially good at explaining the implications of economics on historical events. He is very entertaining. If you're only going to listen to one of his speeches, the one embedded below is the one (just because of the first two stories).

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Download: Tom Woods 33 Questions Speech

If you like what you hear, then I'd suggest listening to all of his speeches on Mises.org (free RSS feed). Once you've exhausted those, you should consider signing up for his Liberty Classroom where you can here additional lectures series by him and other like minded professionals.

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