Oh, Craigslist. You make me laugh. You conjure tears from these baby blue eyes. You make me gasp and turn rosy-cheeked. Yup, we're at it again: The Great Apartment Search continued.
Top events of a Tuesday night Apartment Hunting:
1. Guy who openly admits he stores a "firearm" in the lockbox. Oh yeah, it makes me feel safe, too. Not.
2. The "clothing optional" title. I only got that far.
3. 10 people, their brothers, and sisters living in a 3 bedroom. Oops, I meant couples occupying each bedroom. The more the merrier, right?
4. Title: "Living in the Light in the Aquarian Age." Folks, this is not a joke. This dame wants to have an ecstatic and blissful time, talk about perception and frequency (I think I'm not on her wave length), considers herself an "extremely free thinker," and does her best to "live outside of the illusion of the "reality" matrix." Say what?
5. More peeps trying to rent out their living rooms and dining rooms for $750 A MONTH. Are you kidding me? #Timezizhardz.
6. Two different people advertising free rent in exchange for "chores" and "babysitting." Yeah, that's what I thought.
7. I had to save the best for last: $600 to rent out a room in a trailer park home in West Roxbury. I even clicked on it to see the picture… and, just as I expected. A trailer park home. Complete with a "420-friendly, unemployed single trans". Is that what I think it is? "A small dep might be required…" I'll pass!
But there is good news: After taking in countless ads, some of which shocked, others appalled, and even more bored… After emailing 130 Bostonians and receiving 14 responses… After traveling 11 hours to and from… After staying in a ratty and rat-infested Red Roof Inn… I found my apartment. It's in a beautiful and convenient neighborhood in a charming building. It's classic and classy, and I have two closets. And two roommates. And there's a black kitty. 'Tis the season, everyone!
Homemade Marzipan + How to blanch almonds
Adapted from Nifty Thrifty Things
Makes about 25 small (1-inch) candies
200g raw, unsalted almonds with skin on (about 1 ½ cups)
150g confectioners' sugar (about 1 ¼ cups)
½ tsp pure almond extract
Water (I used about 5 tsp-- you can substitute a liqueur or rose water)
Natural unsweetened cocoa powder
To blanch the almonds: Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil. Remove from heat and add the almonds, letting them sit about 3 minutes. Pour into a colander to drain. Skin the almonds by pinching one end with your fingernails to create a slit in the end, and then press the almond between your thumb and forefinger-- the almond will come shooting out (careful, they'll be a little hot at the beginning). This takes a while (it took me about 10-15 minutes), ask for help from a little one, family, or friends!
Dry the almonds with paper towel and discard the papery almond skins. Add the almonds to the food processor fitted with the metal blade and grind them until they are very fine. Add the powdered sugar to the bowl of the processor and mix until combined. Through the feed tube, slowly add the almond extract, followed by the water. Add the water by the teaspoon, in a slow stream, until the mixture comes together. It should be able to clump together easily when pressed. Do not add too much water. (I used about 5 tsp).
Empty dough onto a clean work surface and knead briefly until all the dough comes together in a ball. Roll the dough into small balls and roll in sifted cocoa powder on a plate. Enjoy!
P.S. Mommer says it's the best marzipan she's ever had (I can definitely agree)! Kiddos might not like the bitter chocolate coating… leave it out if you must!