Thursday, November 11, 2010

Soup and Dungeons and Dragons

My new job is going well, and it appears our contract is being expanded. That means that my co-worker and I will be overlooking other contractors from our firm arriving within the next month or two as the project moves into the next phase. Today I am home on a paid holiday! I don't think I've ever had Veterans Day off from work before.

Bruno is doing well, and it seems that he is gaining much better bladder control and his listening skills are improving, as well. Later this morning we are going down to the lake!

Anyhow, let me dive into a couple things. I love cooking! And a few weeks ago I made this delicious and nutritious soup for myself and my housemates. Here's the recipe I created.

First make the chicken stock -- I stole this from the cool cookbook my sister Ellen bought me. It's "Japanese Hot Pots" by Tadashi Ono and Harris Salat.

1 pound chicken bones and wings
12 cups water, plus more for boiling the bones

Place the bones in a large stockpot, fill it with enough water to cover, and bring to a boil over high heat. Remove from the heat. Strain the bones and discard the water (this will remove all blood and coagulated proteins, which improves the stocks pure flavor). Rinse the bones under running water to wash off any scum. Return the bones to the same pot. Add the 12 cups of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Decrease the heat to medium and simmer until the stock reduces to about 8 cups (approximately 30 minutes). As it cooks remove any scum on surface. Strain the liquid and discard the bones. This creates pure and simple broth I use for the soup's base.

And then onto my Chicken and Vegetable Noodle Soup...

1/3 of 16 oz. box of Fettuccinni
1 cup diced Yellow Onions
1 cup sliced white button Mushrooms
1/2 cup sliced baby Carrots
1/2 cup cubed Zucchini
1 Tbsp. Ground Black Pepper
1 Tbsp. minced Parsley
1/2 Tbsp. Sea Salt
1/2 Tbsp. Garlic powder
2 tsp. Basil leaves
The Chicken stock described above

Boil the Fettuccinni until al dente (somewhat firm). Meanwhile saute the onions, carrots and zucchini in a medium saucepan with a thin layer of vegetable oil, adding the black pepper, sea salt and basil leaves -- stirring kind of like a stir fry dish.

Drain the Fettuccinni and quickly rinse it under cold water. Heat the chicken stock and add mushrooms, and garlic powder -- using a large pot -- and cover. Wait until this comes to a near boil and add the Fetuccinni, the onion/carrot/zucchini mix and reduce to a simmer. Add the parsley on the top and cover. Stir slowly occasionally, but mostly just keep covered for the next 20-25 minutes on a simmer.

It should serve 5 or 6 people. And it's delicious!

Now onto D&D! I love Pathfinder and my home campaign set in the official setting of the world of Golarion is going well. My friend Mike recently joined the group and for some reason he has decided to play a problematic character. I can't help but believe this reflects some of his own personal problems right now. I won't go into the details, but I am not only concerned about his bard/rogue's erratic behavior and the impact it is having on the party, but also my reaction to the way Mike is role-playing and generally behaving outside of the game, as well. I too easily let him provoke me.

So the the real quick of it is -- I want to enhance the fun for everyone. And I am not sure this will also entail asking Mike to leave the campaign, but it might. I think it's always a little problematic to add a new player character after a party has been adventuring together for several levels, but it also does not help when the player is purposefully trying to upset the harmonious team play, and then it becomes worse when the DM feels he constantly needs to react. So, we need to figure out a resolution to this real quick.

The party has been tracking a murder cult of a neutral evil God of deception. However, they are now coming into contact with a rival evil force, one of chaotic evil powers from the Abyss. They have traveled north from Andor to the shores of Lake Encarthan. Along the way they have encountered rival Orc tribes (one with a couple Hill Giant servants), a village under siege, a city with a culture controlled by merchants with a superiority mindset. Next it appears they are about to set sail for the wilds of The River Kingdoms.

The image is a really intense battle with Succubus spy the party was last seen battling...


Daryl Northrop said...

Hi Pete- I've have been in gaming groups where there is one player who is hell-bent on making everything impossible for the rest. Either refusing to do anything useful, or having some insane personality quirk that makes the other characters use them for dragon-bait.

And you are right, this is usually a reflection of the player in his character.

Good luck on getting around that.

DarkTouch said...

On the bright side, I have two really good ideas for my replacement character should I happen to take another Vampiric Touch attack.

PeteinDC said...

Bill, I was about to comment on your own recent post on your blog about Strego. He is a great character, and I hope he doesn't bite the dust...

DarkTouch said...

He wouldn't be the first really great character that I've lost. Characters don't get that status unless there's a real danger of something happening to them. That said, I'm not particularly worried. Strego is the only one doing non-reduced damage right now. So he'll likely get a healing shortly.

Even so, it is always good to have a backup plan.