my mother invited my 2nd aunt and uncle over for hot pot dinner. my great uncle was also invited but he declined the offer, saying he wasn't a big fan of the hot pot. dogs are funny in that they don't disguise the fact if they don't like you: hailey barked at my uncle when he arrived, and even went out of her way to steal his spot on the couch when he tried to sit down. dinner was okay but i ate standing up most of the time because i couldn't reach the pot. plus we didn't have the right spicy sichuan hot pot base so the broth was nothing to write home about. the only thing that was good had nothing to do with the hot pot; it was the fried taro cubes my mother made earlier in the day.
it was only 30°F when i headed back home, but it felt a lot colder. once again, the first half of the trip was uncomfortably cold, while the second half was uncomfortably hot. i was sucking on a mint which made it feel even more tinglingly chilly. christmas night, the only pedestrians i saw on the streets were folks walking their dogs.
my 2 liter bottle of homemade ginger ale was already hard enough this morning that i couldn't press down and dent the container. there still doesn't seem to be a lot of bubbles, but it's definitely filled up with carbon dioxide at this point. i'm going to give it another day to properly ferment before trying it tomorrow. my expectations are low. worst case scenario, some sugar water with a taste of ginger. i still think goya makes the best ginger beer (which i sometimes get from market basket on special occasions). it's super spicy, and my ingredient list approximately matches there's, with the exception of capsicum. maybe in the next batch i'll add a small chili pepper to make it hotter.