misc - beans, knorr, popcorn, campsite change

Some stuff from the last few days.

pinto beans

pinto beans

I made a mess of pintos in the crockpot and ate them for dinner. The next two mornings I had bean burritos. There’s still enough for another dinner.

At some point I looked at the beans and they were positively boiling; so I turned it down to LO. This still held a steady simmer. Even at 10k’ this was well over 180F (I took the probe out as it swept past 180F).

knorr mushroom rice in the rice cooker

knorr rice

The instructions said to cook for 7 mins after the combined ingredients started to boil. I let it run to rice cooker shutoff

  1. to see what would happen
  2. because I’d prefer hands-off cooking if possible

It took 55mins from start to finish. The rice was indistinguishable from stovetop cooking, except a bit of the bottom got scorched. I kinda like a bit of scorch and so will likely continue to do it that way. The few stuck bits popped off the teflon bowl when I pushed with the nylon spoon.

wok popcorn

wok popcorn

Since I didn’t do a reprovisioning before coming out here I ran out of pretzels and other snacky stuff. Then I remembered I had kernel popcorn and broke out the wok.

The wok is shaped like the bottom of an electric popcorn popper, funneling the unpopped kernels back down to the concentrated heat. Works well.

hotplate bathwater

Since it’s been reasonably sunny and solar has been hitting on all cylinders again, I’ve been heating my sink bath water on the lab hotplate. Slower than putting the kettle over propane, but it has the advantage of being zero-cost.

campsite change

new site

Muffin and I were out walking this morning and found a spot that looked like an upgrade. While we were scouting I broke out the Sun Surveyor app to check the sun’s path through the tree canopy. Remarkably good access to the sun in this particular spot.

I’m not that concerned with pretty sites, but this one is nicer. From most important to least important:

  • farther away from the main road (and therefore farther from dust-raising UTV/ATV morons, and from partying morons).
  • the ground is also less rocky, which is better for catholes and other forms of digging
  • slightly better mobile data (~2 bars on V and TMO instead of 0-2 on each).
  • better fire circle

I picked up a few pieces of litter but it (and the previous spot) are remarkably clean given the heavy use.


I finished binging Season 7 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer last night. I had totally forgotten Nathan Fillion was the Big Bad in the last season.

I d/l shows like that off Amazon Prime when I am near open wifi then watch them away from civilization. The Data Saver quality level makes for impressively small downloads and looks fine on the phone.


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