Eksi Cakes

Goooood morninggg <3

I guess this is my new equivalent of the elevator picture.

I said that I was going to finish Bert’s fence before going to sleep, but about 45 minutes in I already could barely keep my eyes open.

This is as far as I got.

So I asked Bert to please not attempt to jump out of the aquarium and he nodded “yes”, so I could go to sleep with my mind slightly at ease. Maybe the nod was coincidence, maybe not. :p

I went to sleep around 2 AM (after doing some exercises, trying to tackle an untamable amount of hair with tweezers and taking a shower) and woke up around 8. The first things I do when waking up is checking what time it is (I should invest in clocks), using the bathroom and flicking on Bert’s light on its lowest brightness carefully sliding my feet across the carpet in the darkness hoping that I don’t step on his lifeless body.

Look who’s
doing swimmingly. 😀

So much for overpriced supermarket rock salt. Bert has healed almost 100% within 48 hours. On the top picture his two final ich spots are visible. The row of tiny spots visible on the second picture are his scales. They give off a purple glow. (Haha if that were ich that would have been fatal. But ich is white and not purple glowy.) He does seem to be the fish I ordered. Or at least to some extent. Let me illustrate:

This was the most expensive betta on the site.
This is the fish I bought.
This was the cheaper option for which color (orange, red or blue) could not be specified.

Bert is, in generalized fashion, clearly a veiltail and not a crowntail. He, though seems to be a cross breed. His tail is still in development and the shimmer of his scales is also in development. Either he is a pure veiltail and I have been scammed 100%, or he is a cross breed and I have been scammed 75%. (*shrugs* Capitalism.) I am, however, social contact adverse, so… I’ve found a way to make it work.

Thank heavens I impulsively decided to buy a much larger tank and had coincidentally filled it up and half warmed it up already when Bert arrived quite unexpectedly last week. In the small unwarmed tank I still haven’t received yet, his fate would have been extremely unfortunate.

Since I got this tank I’ve done 3 water changes, 2 of which 100% (and the other like 66%). First when placing the gravel (66%), then when the water had turned yellow and Bert was tripping from the improperly rinsed gravel, and then yesterday for the mucus epidemic.

Today I woke up to (compared to the examples on the internet, slightly I guess) cloudy water. While I did a dramatic water change yesterday. I never had this problem with my guppy aquarium and also not with my goldfish (or maybe I never even noticed or maybe that’s what I considered “dust settling”). I thought: “Is this dust???”. Both this tank and my guppy tank use a thermostat, so I thought maybe it’s from the warm water that attracts dust particles, given that the main difference between this tank and the guppy tank is that this tank does not have “a hood” or “a lid” idk how to call it. Something that covers it. So dust could get into this aquarium. (Not that my place is dusty.)

But apparently this is the nitrogen cycle at work. Nitrite has to be transferred from ammonia to nitrate. Especially because Bert is his calm and graceful self, there’s no reason for me to step in here. For the water to become bright again is just a matter of time.

I was starting to fear having to do water changes more than once a week with this coverless tank. A coverless tank for which I won’t buy a filter because bettas don’t like water that is moved around the way a filter does. Also, just one betta in a tank of 45L/12 gallons really can’t make the water that dirty that fast. I prefer the water crystal clear, though. (And saw products for that online but if I can do this naturally then I surely will.) The mini piece of java moss has a lot of work to do haha…

High rates of ammonia in the water (the ammonia is what makes the water look “dusty”, if I’ve followed the plenty of sources correctly) can cause fin rot, so (clearly the rate is then not that high here because Bert’s fins have been developing steadily) I think Bert will reach his most graceful state of appearance when there’s nitrate in the water. The only way for me to create nitrate naturally is by not doing full water changes for a while. Lucky me.

Having a fish or having a pet in general is most fun when you can just enjoy observing (or playing if it’s a more interactive pet) and the most intense thing you have to do is feeding. Now I have more time to play the piano again. Since Bert got here I’ve touched the piano only once. I’ll have time to do that again – something Bert enjoys as well. 🙂 I’ll also have time to unpack the box of shower cabinet items, which I still hadn’t done since the check-up. (I don’t know how I manage to fit so many items into it.)

And I’ll have time to make cheap and tasty snacks again. Bert (ha I talk about this liefje a lot ( – 3 -)) has been eating away at my budget. But luckily I have quite the ration. (The popcorn and remaining plantain chips I prefer to hold on to, given that I have the resources to make something better.)

Yesterday, I attempted to make fried cassava pastei to eat with my left over stew. (I say “pastei” because that’s what Surinamese people call savory stuffed dough foods and I feel uncomfortable saying “meat pie” if there’s no meat in it.) The amount of frozen cassava I had, though, was very scanty.

I ended up adding corn flour and corn starch for compensation.

The dough, however, after adding lemon juice for moisture, was still too crumbly. Then I added an egg. Though I made one pasteitje (“pastei” in that context would be a full oven scale covered in one blanket of dough, “-tje” is then the little pastries, though “pastei” is also an all-encompassing term, regarding my specifics here) with it, it made the dough far too not firm, so I ended up adding regular flour.

Spot the flourless pasteitje. (The white chunks are cassava I was unable to grate/blend.)
It looks so much different ahahaha.
But we were yayed. (This really is the new elevator pic.)

Today, aside from yellow rice and fish sticks, which are not very effort-intensive things to make, I’ll be making eksi cakes and apple tea. A while ago I mentioned wanting to make cupcakes with “cola essence” in the style of the Surinamese eksi kuku. Now that I held on to the second can of Fernandes my mother sent me, and I’m mostly out of dairy, this seems a good moment to make “eksi cakes”. The fusion invention I already called dibs on before I made it. (Standard eksi kuku doesn’t have cola essence (to be clear: cola essence is dark pink and does not at all taste like coca cola) in it anyway.)

A great downside of living in a city center in contrast to a deserted rural area is that I now have to endure the sound of whatever rap performance is going on at the square near here. I know they’re probably doing it because my Jewish neighbors whose religious gatherings have been crashed by police more than once will love this. *sigh* I thought this was a super dangerous and deadly pandemic.

Anyway, I’m going take out eggs and butter to get them to room temperature, empty the box with badkamer items and have late lunch. x

13:13 (01:13 PM) CET

It’s snowinggg.

How kuddle. :3 If you don’t have to drive or travel a long distance, that is.

I did the things I said I was going to do. Except taking out butter because a recipe I saw suggested melted butter and especially because I don’t have a mixer using melted butter is more convenient.

Before I get started, I’ll be chilling for like an hour. x

14:58 (02:58 PM) CET

I’ve done some more research into how to make an eksi kuku. (I’ve never made it. It’s just me at every party devouring it the most.) Everyone who makes it has usually learnt it generational, like from a relative, and with that everyone has their own family twist to it. It never tastes exactly the same. Everyone makes it differently.

The usual taste essences are almond and vanilla. But this one time or sometimes I taste cola essence. I haven’t found recipes with that, but I’ll be using Fernandes as substitute for cola essence and vanilla. For me to stop saying “it’s not like coca cola”:

This is what I mean. It’s the classical ingredient in “grandma lemonade” (that’s the literal name of the recipe). (Originally made from the same plant cocaine is made from?) I looooveee the taste of cola essence. <3_<3 (That is not at all a reference to cocaine haha brrr.)

Sometimes I get these recommendations with Asian (I think mostly Japanese¿) cooking videos and this one time I saw someone make a cake-like berliner-ish pastry using sprite/7-up, so I figured I could use Fernandes in a similar way. I couldn’t find the recipe anymore (it was quite some months ago) but I found out about the existence of the 7-up pound cake in my recent search. So I’ll be using Fernandes like that.

The main reason why the eksi kuku is called eksi kuku is because of the ratio of eggs that is used in the cake. I haven’t seen recipes where the egg whites are whisked seperately, but because I’m making cupcakes and I don’t want the cupcakes to have the density of an actual eksi kuku, I’ll be whisking egg whites.

Also, I don’t know about the combination of carbon dioxide (koolzuur, soda frizz) and self-rising flour and/or baking soda, but I guess I’ll find out along the way haha…

It’s later than I intended to start, but I’ve had quite a heavy lunch so I guess I’ll be cooking a full dinner just to end up having 95% of it as left overs once again later today. (Haha so you know what tomorrow’s theme will beee. 😀 ) I wasn’t able to get up earlier because it’s cold as hell. I’ve already been sleeping with clothes on for the last two days because without is now unbearable ( ” 😮 ” ) and I also wear clothes now when I’m chilling indoors all day. (’t Moet niet gekker worden joh. :p)

I still actually don’t want to use the radiator/verwarming/heater, but I think, basically for the first time since I moved here, I’ll actually do that right now… (Ahahahaha “WHO TOUCHED THE THERMOSTAT?”) Or maybe I’ll wear sweatpants and a vest instead of basketball shorts and a t-shirt… I’d rather do that (because the radiator often has an uncomfortable effect on my nostrils). Ye so changing clothes, washing a couple (read: a stack) of plates and some utensils and then starting on my cake. x

17:55 (05:55 PM) CET

Trademarked haaaaaaaa.

Meanwhile I’m waiting for my rice to finish in a few minutes, after which I’ll eat 5% and start my night routine and stuff. I’ll tell you about my amazing cake making journey tomorrow. Good night in advance x

22:01 (10:01 PM) CET

Photo by NEOSiAM 2020 from Pexels

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