The Founder (John Lee Hancock – 2016) B+

The story of the milkshake mixer salesman who came upon a little successful restaurant in California and saw opportunity. He had the vision, the ambition and the willingness to do whatever he had to in order to make McDonald’s a multi-billion dollar franchise to the detriment of the actual founders. It’s a very good movie, well-written and has some very good performances.

Sully (Clint Eastwood – 2016) C-

Not very good. It’s a film that is based on a formidable act by Captain Sully landing a jet on the Hudson and losing 0 lives. However, that’s all there is. The script attempts to add gravitas to some cheesy dialogue and adds conflict that feels (and is) fabricated via the investigation of the incident. Ultimately it falls flat.

I don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore (Macon Blair – 2017) A-

It is weird how Netflix does so little to market the films they produce or acquire. This is another example of a really good flick that not many might have heard of. It’s full of personality and interesting characters but seems to get buried on the site. Ruth lives a “normal” but depressing existence as a nurse. She seems down-trodden, beaten and anyone can eat her lunch. When she gets burglarized though she seems to wake up and her purpose, accompanied by her weird neighbor, is to track down who stole her silverware. It’s well-acted and most characters are interesting three-dimensional individuals. It held my attention as it twisted and turned in bloody absurdity until the insane finale.

Thai Green Curry with Apple Eggplants, Tofu and Chicken – Cucumber and Cabbage Salad

Green Curry-Chicken3

It’s Thai dinner night again and I love it. The rest of the family, especially the kiddos, not so much. No matter, I’m craving a rich spicy coconut based curry with tons of flavor and that’s what I made. A refreshing crunchy tart Thai salad is always a must to balance the meal.

Green Curry2

Making the curry paste using a pestle and mortar is cool, almost therapeutic but also time consuming. This was a weekday meal at our household though. So, as I frequently do, I reached out for my blender and used that to make a smooth green curry paste. I used a recipe in David Thompson’s Thai Food as a base and made this one with cilantro, stems and leaves, galangal, chilies, lemongrass, fresh turmeric, ginger along with a few spices.

Green Curry3

Green Curry-Chicken

I heated up some coconut cream (I’ve been using Arroy-D brand recently) and used that to cook the paste  for a few minutes. I added coconut milk and tossed in chicken thigh pieces and cubed tofu. Thai apple eggplant are cool looking fruit. They are about the size of a golf ball and have a wild green striped color. They are also, as far as I know, the only eggplant that is good to eat raw or under-cooked. They have a nice crunchy texture and mild taste with no bitterness. I added the quartered eggplants in the last 10 minutes or so of cooking to get them heated and slightly cooked. Lastly I put in a bunch of Thai basil and finished seasoning the delicious stew with fish sauce and lime juice.

Green Curry

I made the Thai-style cabbage salad in the granite mortar by pounding some garlic with salt, peanuts, lime and fish sauce. I added the cabbage and bruised the whole thing together. Lastly went in the cucumbers pieces and using a spoon and the pestle everything came together with some fish sauce, lime and cilantro.

Thai Cabbage Salad

Thai Cabbage Salad2

Green Curry-Chicken2

War Dogs (Todd Phillips – 2016) B+

This falls under the category of “enjoyed it way more than I expected”. It’s a fact-based fun and funny story about two guys who managed to figure out that they can make a boat load of money selling arms to the US military during the Bush wars. They get a bit carried away. Good chemistry between Jonah Hill and Miles Teller and a fast-paced story make this romp really work.