It’s a French Toast Sunday

I should be busy writing. It is, after all, NaNoWriMo month . . . wait, that’s redundant. 

Regardless, the point is that if I aim to do partake in the challenge, I should be writing. And yet, I’ve got exactly zero words of fiction written so far this month. I’m not worried, of course . . . if I get going, I’ll easily make up for the late start. But, stuff be going on and I’m otherwise occupied. Nothing anyone should worry about, just things that preoccupy me. 

Thing like, for instance, making French Toast. Them there be five slices of sweetbread from the Punaluʻu bakery.

I don’t follow a specific recipe; for the five slices, I take three whole eggs — I’ve tried taking six half eggs, but it gets messy really fast — and I wisk them until the yolk and the albumen are thoroughly emulsified. I then add Half & Half and some milk. I eye-ball it as opposed to measuring amounts. I judge the color and consistency based on how I feel at the moment.  I probably should have taken a photo of the batter . . . maybe next time. 

We have a skillet — one of the few kitchen things we kept when we sold everything — that works on the stovetop. 

We have a glass cooktop and that sucks because it doesn’t heat evenly. I’ll get to that later. 

I used to use butter, but these days I use Smart Balance buttery spread (the one made with olive oil). Say what you like, the stuff is good.  

As you can see from the above photo, I make pretty patterns as I wait for the skillet to heat up. Here are a few more shots of my buttery arts. 

Once I deem the skillet hot enough, I soak the pieces of sweetbread in the batter long enough to soak through but not long enough for the bread to fall apart on me and I then arrange them on the skillet.  

That particular arrangement minimizes the pieces sticking to each other during the first stage of the cooking. At this juncture, I might pour what little batter is left atop the individual pieces. Occasionally, if I have enough batter left over (remember, I don’t measure exactly) I might cut one additional piece into four triangular pieces that fit in the triangular openings. 

I let those brown and turn them over once they no longer stick to the surface. 

Notice how they are not evenly browned. . . dang electric cooktop!

Once both sides are browned, I rearrange the pieces so that I can slide them around like one of those old-time numbers puzzles. 

I keep the pieces in motion around the skillet so as to have them cook evenly as they each go through the hotter spots.

What do you mean “I’m not familiar with the puzzle”? Here, read THIS. I used to love those when I was younger. You know, before the Internet and all. You can play it HERE. Or, make yourself some French Toast on a square skillet.

Anyway, at the first whiff of burnt smell (the electric cooktop is difficult to regulate and difficult to maintain at a given temperature), I pull the French Toast from the skillet and . . . 

All of them photos were taken with the Note 8. 

You knew that was coming, right? Well, it’s not just photos. I stopped at the Magic Sands beach and did me some video tests. 

First up, a quick Hyperlapse example. Hyperlapse is a form of timelapse. I’ll have to play around with it a bit more, but this is what a short clip looks like. I think the ratio is about ten-to-one. Meaning, ten minutes of video capture will give you a one minute video. This one is 2 seconds long (roughly 17 seconds of actual recording).

It was drizzling at the time, but the Note 8 is water resistant. The drizzle explains the gray clouds overhead. 

You would normally have the camera stationary but this was hand-held. 

Like I said, this has creative possibilities. There is also an animated gif option which I assume is something similar but which I didn’t have the presence of mind to test out for this post. 

I did, however, test out the slow motion feature. This is rather interesting and I’ll have to research what the phone actually does. The slowest slow motion is 1/8 speed. That means that rather than capturing 30 frames per second, the camera captures 240 frames per second. Or so it should be, but I don’t know if they actually do that or if they interpolate. The literature is unclear but seems to indicate that’s the case. 

So, here’s the interesting thing. It’s saved as a regular video clip, but then you go in and edit and set the parts you want to show in slow motion. So, for instance, if I don’t edit it and just share it as is, the clip will appear as if a standard video (regular speed).

This next video is originally 30 seconds long, but after editing, it’s 2 minutes long. If I would have set the whole thing in slow motion, it would have been 30 seconds times 8, or six minutes long. I know, it’s math, and therefore confusing. Here, watch it and then I’ll talk some more. I wish it would have been sunny, but it’s not bad for illustrative purposes. 

As far as I can tell, you can have up to two separate sections of slow-motionness and they can be of any length. You don’t need to, of course. It could be just one part and it could be the whole video. I haven’t figured out if you’re limited to two slow-motion segments or if you can add more.  

This is, however, neat because you can skip the boring parts and only show the interesting parts in slow motion. 

Here’s another one, this one about a minute long (the original was 14 seconds).

This movie I both clipped (removing some parts where the waves were not doing anything interesting) and adjusted the non-slow motion portion to be small.

In this next video, I only have one slow-motion portion. I waited until there was a decent wave before switching it on. 

Here are a few more video clips . . . #4 is two minutes long, #5 is one minute, and #6 is 30 seconds.

I really, really wanted a better test. Meaning, I wanted bigger waves and to be closer to them. Instead, I settled for a water-drop test. I tried it and wasn’t happy with the result because I could not see the water very well . . . BUT, I could turn on the flash on constant and ended up shooting this video (2 minutes after editing it) . . . 

The camera switches to 720p when in Slow Motion mode, but the quality is still good, at least to my old and tired eyes. 

YouTube has the option to slow videos down, so you can further slow the action to 0.75, 0.5, or 0.25 speeds. That’s pretty slow, and possibly boring, depending on the action. 

Well, I’m at the end, and it’s now after midnight on the East Coast but still Sunday here. Normally, I’d schedule this for 1:00 am my time (early morning on most of the mainland) but I figure people in the orient and down-under are bored right now and might enjoy the post right now.  

Plus, I’m including some jokes . . . haven’t done that in a while.

Brevity

I didn’t know I could charge for what I do . . . I should turn pro.

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.

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