Homemade Smoked Cured Bacon

Our family goes through bacon like it’s bread.  We eat bacon almost everyday.  I’d say we go through 2-3 lbs of bacon a week.  This can add up and for the longest time I wanted to make my own.  So, I scoured through the internet, looking at some really good sites and using science and reviewing recipes, I came up with my own successful recipe.

Before curing

After curing

Now where does one grab a slab of pork belly?  Costco started selling 10lb slabs for a good price of $2.99/lb.  This means what normally is $7.99/lb of bacon at the store, can be a big savings in the pocketbook.


Good Beer Bad Beer: The Art of Describing Flavors

Vinous, isovaleric, tarry, geraniol, and mercaptan are just some of the flavors of beer that can either make or break a home brewer’s spirit. Sitting amongst my fellow peers, judging beer, we were surrounded by small glasses of eager brews waiting to be swooshed, swirled, chewed, and spit into a saliva laden coffin. I was young in the beer judging scene. (more…)

Fiber – Where It’s At In Austin

On a most recent hunt for connectivity options in our Gravitant Office, I have amassed a list of telco providers that offer fiber in Austin.  Hopefully this information would be of use for other folks in the Austin Area.

Alpheus – Fiber Schematic MapBuilding List
Zayo – Google Maps Address Search
Level3 – Map Interface
Fiberlite – PDF Map
FPL FiberNet – Map Interface
TWTelcom – PDF Map

Looking for Austin City Pool?

The Summer heat in Austin is kicking in.  Time to spend those weekends at the pool!  I’ve compiled a list and map of Austin City Pools using FusionTables from Google.

And just in case you missed my post about all the Austin Restaurants with Playscapes.

Can you tell what type of SQL DB this .sql file is for?

Can you tell what sql database this sql snippet is for?

CREATE TABLE attachment (
 type text,
 id text,
 filename text,
 size integer,
 time integer,
 description text,
 author text,
 ipnr text,
 UNIQUE (type,id,filename)

INSERT INTO "attachment" VALUES('wiki','CrazyTown','mysql-ds.xml',1146,

Answer is  (more…)

Secret Sauce For Minimizing Resources Without Sacrificing Performance For VMs

Once again, I felt like a chemist or a cook in the kitchen when reading the publication “Algorithm Design for Performance Aware VM Consolidation“, written by Alan Roytman, Aman Kansal, Sriram Govindan, Jie Liu, and Suman Nath over at MSR.  The conclusion is that optimally aligning VMs based on predictive workloads and reducing contention amongst VMs on shared infrastructure will generate a…

… proposed system realiz[ing] over 30% savings in energy costs and up to 52% reduction in performance degradation”


Restaurants with Playscapes in Austin, TX

For all of you parents in Austin… here are some restaurants that have playscapes.   I scraped this data off the web and placed it on a google map.  I originally created it using a google spreadsheet and a map gadget, but 2 things made this a bad idea.  First, it took an extremely long time to render the gadget.  Secondly, gadgets on google docs are set to disappear in a few months.

Solution?  I just learned about Fusion Tables in Google.  Boy,  I wish I learned about these sooner with all of my huge spreadsheets…. (more…)

Homemade Goat Milk Ricotta

Ricotta cheese is a favorite cheese of mine and I always wondered how you make it.  I often eat it by sneaking a spoonful here and there while I’m making lasagna or baked ziti.  Let’s face it I’m addicted to ricotta and can eat a whole container if I had the time.

When I did my sleuthing on the internet, I came across a dozen different recipes.  All of them consistently described that ricotta is as simple as milk, temperature, and acid:  An hour later you have ricotta cheese.  With this info, I’ve come up with a recipe of my own.  The traditional way is to let the acid sit with the milk for 12 to 24 hours at room temperature, then heating it to near boil.  This miraculously develops curds that can then be strained out.

[Day 22] Trip3l – 512 Brewing Company

You gotta love a movie theater that has a selection of beverages like this.  

So, I’m set to watch “Campaign” at the movie theater and decided to true up on my beer log by trying the Trip3l. (more…)

[Day 23] Lucky Ol Sun – Ranger Creek

This is the first morning that I felt very fresh!  Partly, because the evening before is the first time in a while that I didn’t feel exhausted.  Now that Tammy has graduated from AOMA, we have our weeks free when Isabel is dropped off.  This afternoon, I decided to go to Opal Divines for lunch with Tammy.  I had the Lucky Ol’ Sun from Ranger Creek brewery in San Antonio, TX.  It’s described as a golden ale with pilsner malt, candy sugar and Texas honey.  How could I resist.

Beer Advocate has it categorized as a Belgian Strong Ale, but I disagree.  This is a rather light beer in taste.  If I breathed in the bursty carbonation before my sit I got a tasty feel for cotton candy vapors.  The honey came through, but in a sweet mature way.  I could really sense the rock candy swirl that was playing like a washing machine in my mouth.

This complimented my chicken finger lunch extremely well.  An excellent summer companion.