December 3rd, 2006

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TV of Yore

[Happy birthday to eudociainboston!]

It really is fascinating, doing the VHS-to-DVD dubs of the obscure TV shows that never made it long enough to get commercially released. I am reminded of all these shows that were, if not exactly *good*, at least very interesting in retrospect.

For instance, today is VR-5. Only lasted half-a-season in 1995, but take a look at the high concept. We've got a 20-something girl named Sydney, whose father bequeathed upon her a mysterious legacy of skills that she is only beginning to understand as she probes her own memories, mentored by a character played by Tony Head who was a member of a mysterious organization whose motives are somewhat unclear and with whom he has fallen out.

Sound just a wee bit familiar? It's always fascinating to watch the genre thrashing around, trying to find the right way to make ideas click...
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And that is why we subscribe to Cook's Illustrated

Tonight's experiment was the "Very Good Mushroom Lasagna", from the September/October issue. The underlying theme seems to be that the way to get decent mushroom flavor is to have lots and Lots and LOTS of mushrooms -- two pounds of portobelli *plus* half an ounce of dried porcini *and* half a pound of sauteed buttons. Way too much work and expense (see "two pounds of portobelli"), and the end result isn't even remotely healthy (the lasagna involves a quart of milk and a pound of cheese) but it's very tasty.

Recommended to those looking for a good veggie entree. (And who like mushrooms.) No, I'm not typing it in -- the recipe is very, very long, and creative enough that I'm going to respect their copyright on this. Find it in the library, or get the collection at the end of the year...