Is she still going on about avocados? Yes, yes she is.
I actually really recommend that emergency guacamole recipe if you’re experiencing sharp guacamole cravings and you have avocados and some kind of salsa. It’ll do just fine in a pinch, but of course nothing will compare to real, fresh guacamole. Even with the lime, avocados go brown really quickly, so be sure not to make more than you’re planning on eating or sharing in one sitting, because it won’t keep. And you can substitute milder peppers than serrano – or none at all – if you’re not a fan of spice.
So! This might be the end of my little avocado arc. For the time being, anyway!
In other news, I’ll be exhibiting in Artists’ Alley at Chicago Wizard World next weekend. Come by if you’re there! I’ll put up a map and booth number soon.
Okay, let’s get back to avocados. I hope this one’s not too simplistic you guys, but I found it a little tricky when I first started preparing my own avocados. Rule #1: BE CAREFUL. These little jerks are slippery as anything. Watch your fingers! The flesh of a ripe avocado gives pretty easily, so you don’t have to cut very hard.
Hey! In other news, now that San Diego Comic-Con is over, I added some prints to the store! There’s a print of this comic about sausages, and this one about steak, and some prints of the really evil Pokemon butcher charts I painted. They’re all on really pretty felt textured paper too. I’ll have them for sale at Chicago Wizard World in a few weeks, but you can also skip the crowds and just order online.
Sorry guys!! Longman is usually packed, so if there’s seats open when we pass it, the temptation to duck in there is pretty strong. The Bourbon Bramble was amazing, but I got one of the last ones, and they’re out of the housemade blackberry cordial now, so I can’t even recommend it to you. And the Last Exit was remarkable as well, but I have scoured L&E’s twitter and facebook and blog and I can’t find the recipe, and all I remember is that it was whiskey based and delicious.
To start we had soft shell crab, and sweetbreads. Then Niles had some Kentucky fried quail, and some of the most decadent cornbread I’ve ever had the pleasure of tasting. I had the porchetta on a bed of corn-bacon risotto, and I will be dreaming happy dreams about that dish for a long while. And then for dessert we had the “1987”, which had a white chocolate and lime biscuit, passionfruit mousse, and curry frozen yogurt! It was all great, but the curry frozen yogurt blew me away. I realize this description is probably annoying when I didn’t draw any of it, and instead scrawled out this whiskey-fueled embarrassment of a comic, but I’ll do better for Friday’s comic, I promise.
I do not normally get this whiskeyed up on a weeknight, especially not with an extra-long Wednesday ahead of me, but it’s nice once in a while. I mean, we weren’t drunk by any means; the cocktails were potent but pretty small. Still, the older I get, the dumber it is to say “yes” to shots. They’re hard to turn down, especially when they’re offered for free by a bartender, and they come charged with layers of camaraderie, generosity and gemütlichkeit. I’ve been pretty smart about turning them down in recent months, but not this time, I guess. Let this comic be a reminder to me of why it’s okay to say no sometimes.
If you are in the northern, less temperate parts of this continent, you might be thinking to yourself, “there’s more than one kind of avocado?” Here in Chicago we get Haas avocados. It’s the most commercially available avocado, it can be grown year round in some places, and it travels well and has a long shelf life. So if you’re in the northern midwest or the northeast US, you’re probably seeing Haas at your supermarket. Occasionally, very occasionally, you can find one or two other varieties, maybe Gwen, maybe an unnamed “lower calorie” Florida variety. So it can come as a surprise to lifelong northerners that there are other kinds, much less dozens and dozens of varieties out there. The ones I’ve drawn here are mostly California and Florida varieties, but Mexico produces avocados, so does Hawaii, all over South America; even China and Indonesia grow avocados.
I really wanted to try to get my hands on a bunch of different kinds of avocado while we were in San Diego for Comic-Con, but there wasn’t much time for anything. So I think I’m going to have to mail-order a bunch and have an avocado tasting party. Who’s in?
In other news: SDCC is over, and I finally feel like I’ve caught up on sleep. I have two more cons this year – Chicago Wizard World and SPX – and I think next year I’m going to restrict myself to local conventions and take it easy for a while.
In other, other news: I am working on a new graphic novel that is mostly written and I want to get started drawing it, and I think it’s going to require taking a break from Sauceome to jumpstart that project. So! It’s time for another round of guest comics!! The last time I did this I got ten awesome comics from people (they start here, if you want to see them again). I haven’t quite come up with dates yet for when I’d want them to run, but it would be at least a month before they’d be due. If you’re interested in contributing a guest comic, email me!
After Preview Night at SDCC, Niles’s Aunt Claudia came and picked us up and took us out to dinner to this awesome little joint called Lucha Libre Taco Shop. The line was long, but it moved fast, and they had already won my heart over with the clever signs, lucha masks everywhere, and a little thing on the menu called “Undefeated Seafood Burrito”. Grilled shrimp, cheese, shredded cabbage, pico de gallo, black beans… it was delicious. Not out-of-this-world creative, nothing over the top, just good solid ingredients, well made; plus a pretty extensive salsa bar as well. Niles had a few Undefeated Seafood tacos, and an Adobado taco, and we soaked in the luchador movie playing on the tv and the luchador photos everywhere. In all the busy hectic rush of Comic-Con, I didn’t get much of a chance to explore San Diego or eat at too many interesting places, but Lucha Libre Taco Shop was a hip and charming little oasis in an otherwise chaotic week.
I’m back from San Diego Comic-Con! It was crazy, it was fun, it was insanely chaotic, it was stressful, it was rewarding. I sold more than I’ve sold at any convention to date, but I didn’t sell nearly enough to justify all the costs of going out there. Still, I’m really glad I went, even if I never go back again. The atmosphere was unbelievable, it was like Mardi Gras. Or, Nerdi Gras, as Niles put it.
Anyway, I’m exhausted, but happy. As always happens with these conventions, no I did not have time to see/do/visit anything that people are supposed to see/do/visit when they go to San Diego, because I was working behind a table the entire time. I did get to eat some pretty amazing food, and I met some much more amazing people and made some new comics friends, and even managed to get one or two new comics to read! I’m super mega bigtime happy to be back home, though.
Previously on How Chocolate is Made.
And now, the thrilling, chocolately conclusion! Such a long journey from the fruit on the tree. I’m honestly kind of surprised humans ever thought to do all this, but ever-so-grateful for the end result.
Sorry to break up the chocolatey goodness. More chocolate to come soon! Promise!
In the meantime, I will be exhibiting at Nerd Prom, I mean, San Diego Comic-Con this weekend. Are you going to be there? I will be mostly at the Small Press Pavilion, table M-04, but I’ll have books and stuff at Artists Alley table DD-07. Come see me and say hi!! I’ll have free League of Courteous Cyclists stickers to hand out!
Part 1 of a 3 part series! I was thinking the other day about how far removed chocolate is from the actual cocoa tree. I thought it’d be interesting to do a visual rundown of all the steps involved in making your favorite chocolate bar, and how far it has to travel from the tree to your taste buds.