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Jul
14
2013

how to freeze blueberries

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So this week our local grocery store had a special on blueberries.  Six pints for 6 bucks!  The question is what do we do with 18 pints of blueberries?  First we made a blueberry pie... Yum!

blueberrry pie

We also made blueberry pancakes for breakfast on Sunday.  But that still left us with a lot of blueberries.  So the solution?  Freeze them, and save them for when they aren't in season.  It's easy to do, and they are great for muffins, pies, pancakes, scones or whatever all year round.  Here's how we did it:

Step 1:  Clean, wash, and dry the berries.  Lay them out in a single layer on a cookie sheet lined with paper towel to dry.

blueberry tray

Step 2:  Put the cookie tray in the freezer once the berries are dry to get the freezing process started.

Step 3:  When the berries are slightly frozen, transfer them to ball jars, ziplock bags, or whatever resealable container you want to use.  Seal them up, and put them back in the freezer.

blueberry jar


Now, whenever you want some "fresh" blueberries, take what you need out of the freezer, and enjoy!

Scott Pollacek - about me

 
May
20
2013

Rose and Pauls 50th

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Happy Anniversary Aunt Rose and Uncle Paul!  It is rare for a couple to stay together 50 years these days.  You are an inspiration to us all. 

It was an honor to be included in the celebration of this special occasion.  Brenda and I each brought a camera, and together we took around 300 pictures.  My favorite picture from the day is of Aunt Rose and uncle Paul on the bench outside the restaurant.

Paul and Rose 50th Anniversary


I've set up this slideshow, or the rest of the pictures are in the gallery in the Rose and Paul 50th party album.  Enjoy the pictures!

Scott Pollacek - about me

 
Feb
04
2013

Scott Pollacek

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Scott Pollacek Are you looking for an IT manager, or a world class Windows and Linux systems administrator? With 18 years in IT project/program management experience, I have gained wide-ranging expertise in Windows, Linux, Java application platforms and LAN/WAN implementation, SAN administration, global collaboration systems and enterprise-wide single sign-on (SSO).

My broad technical background and leadership abilities have been major contributors to the career success I've enjoyed during these years. Noteworthy accomplishments in consultative and full-time roles at General Electric include:

  • Implemented production change processes for deployment of application changes throughout the Corporate tax infrastructure. Provided world class support to customers, meeting or exceeding the standard SLA's for change implementation.
  • Reduced Tax systems downtime by 30% - 50% with application isolation, performance tuning, and enhanced monitoring.
  • Achieved 40% cost savings company-wide for secure remote access.
  • Established guidelines that shortened cycle time between technology introduction and production support.
  • Implemented and remotely managed 300-server, 2,000-client multi-domain infrastructure.
  • Researched and documented global collaboration upgrade alternatives for the GE enterprise. Subsequently played vital role on team implementing 150-server solution.
  • Instrumental in streamlining SSO user authentication for Domino throughout GE.
  • Introduced secure airborne connectivity for corporate jets.

Experience has taught me that technical skill alone cannot guarantee success. I can also offer your firm qualities of imagination, drive, responsiveness, versatility, dedication to excellence and the critical ability to lead others in challenging situations.  I welcome the opportunity to speak with you further about how my diverse knowledge and skills could add real value to your company's strategic systems/security initiatives.

Sincerely,
Scott A Pollacek

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Nov
18
2012

Peanuts

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So here we are just hanging out at the lake.  It's a beautiful autumn day and I have been messing around with the camera.  I have to start using the Nikon D40X if I am ever going to get better with it.  So I screwed on the macro lens and took a couple of snaps of Brenda's flowers.

christmas cactus

violet

Then we decided to make some homemade Baileys.  And I snapped a few shots of that for the recipe page.  Then we sat down at the table, the sun was getting low, and I was enjoying a few peanuts with the baileys.  So why not put that macro lens back on and snap a shot of the peanuts?

peanuts

I think I am starting to get the hang of this camera.  It's only been a year.

Scott Pollacek - about me

 

Apple Brined Fried Chicken

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This recipe is derived from a combination of different sources.  The idea of the cider came from Sunny Anderson's recipe.

Apple brined fried chicken

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups apple cider
  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 1 (4 1/2 to 5-pound) chicken, cut into pieces
  • Water
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup hot sauce (Frank's RedHot)
  • 1 Tbs freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbs granulated garlic
  • 2 Tbs onion powder
  • 3 Tbs paprika
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 2 quarts oil, for frying

Instructions:

  • In a large bowl, whisk together cider and 1/4 cup salt until salt dissolves. Add chicken pieces and enough water to coat and soak at least 1 hour in the refrigerator. Chicken should be completely submerged in brine.
  • In a large pot, heat vegetable shortening until a deep-fry thermometer reaches 325 degrees F. Line a sheet tray with a wire rack.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, 1/3 cup water, hot sauce a pinch of salt and black pepper.
  • In another bowl mix together flour and cornstarch, 1/2 the garlic, 1/2 the onion powder, 1/2 the paprika, and 1/2 the remaining salt and pepper.
  • Drain chicken from brine and season the chicken with the remaining garlic, onion, paprika and pepper.
  • Dip the chicken first in egg mixture then in flour mixture to coat. Set on wire rack to let coating sit for 10 minutes.
  • Fry chicken until golden brown on both sides and cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes, depending on the size of the piece. Remove from oil to drain on paper towel-lined plate.

Tips:

  • Place a wire rack on a sheet pan, and preheat the oven to 350.  Keep chicken hot by placing it on the wire rack in the center of the oven while frying the next batch.
  • A little salt to taste when the chicken comes out of the fryer gives it that extra pop of flavor.

Scott Pollacek - about me

 
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