Tuesday, June 30, 2015

SFRB Summer Cafe: Supernova Hot!

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This is the Inkstained Succubus blog.  Let's enjoy a light summer supper with some Greek Hand Pies. Light, tasty and made with summer produce. (A great way to use up that zucchini!) They can be done as hand pies, conventional pies, as a croissant ringor simply with the filling stuffed in pita shells.

Greek Hand Pies

For The Pie

2 14.1 oz boxes Pillsbury Pie Crusts
1 lb ground beef or turkey
⅓ cup finely diced zucchini
¼ cup chopped black olives
1 teaspoon McCormick Greek Seasoning
¼ teaspoon salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 egg lightly beaten with a splash of water.
¼ cup crumbled feta cheese

Tzatziki Dipping Sauce
1 cup plain Greek Yogurt such as Chobani
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 clove garlic minced
2 tablespoon finely grated cucumber, peeled and seeded

Preheat oven to 400.

In a large skillet, brown ground beef stir in garlic and Greek seasoning and salt. Add zucchini and olives and continue cooking until zucchini just starts to soften. Remove from heat.

Roll out each piecrust and cut in half. Spoon a generous amount of filing onto one half of each pie crust half. Top with about a tablespoon of feta cheese. Fold dough over filling and crimp edges with a fork or pinch with your fingers. Place on a baking sheet. Continue with the rest of the pie dough and filling. Brush each pie with egg wash.

Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove. Serve with Tzatziki sauce.

For the sauce,
Combine all the ingredients in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Makes 8 pies

And for your reading pleasure while you're eating, a selection from Somewhere Out There, our recent SF anthology.

From "A Very Emotional Scene"

The space station named Euripides 9, more commonly referred to as “The Last Stop,” was as far away from Earth as Madeline could get with what little money she’d left home with. It was the last waystation before crossing a mind-numbing chasm of empty space that stood between the cluster of solar systems that humanity had already dominated, and the next cluster of solar systems that humanity was now conquering.

It had taken Madeline close to a month to make it out as far as she had. She sat quietly in her quarters on a transport ship, staring at the walls day after day, with only the hum of the engines and the occasional whoosh of an FTL Push Drive to keep her company when she wasn’t taking in a rare meal. She disembarked at the next waystation and boarded another transport for the next leg of her journey, and she had a new room in which to sit quietly and stare at a new wall.

She expected something to happen at any time. She didn’t know if she would cry, or laugh hysterically, or just snap out of it and come to her senses. Every day when she woke, she wondered if this would be the day that her catatonic daze would end and the reality of it all would explode around her. She would contact her parents and they would send her the funds to return home.

But nothing ever happened. Days and weeks went by, and all she did was stare and wait. Whatever it was she was doomed to eventually feel, it seemed to be less inevitable than she had expected. The emotions never came. Madeline had reached the end of her journey, and the end of her money, and the numbness had never faded.

And so, she was seeing an onion about a job.

“I’m a chef, of sorts,” Harper continued. “I create entertainment for the humans that travel through here, and the Tegalians that crew the station come to feed on the emotions that my entertainment elicits. It’s a very symbiotic relationship that has made me very wealthy and rather well-known in many Tegalian circles.”

“That’s nice,” Madeline said, assuming he was expecting her to say something.

“Did you do any performing on Earth?” Harper asked her.

Madeline shrugged. “Sure.”

“Have you ever performed a sexual act for an audience?” Harper asked.

Madeline blinked. “Pardon?”

“I understand humans are rather private about their sexual practices,” it said. “I’ve found that including sexual activity in my productions generates very strong emotions. It’s a very enticing mixture of excitement and revulsion. It’s quite a spicy flavor. Have you ever had sex on stage before?”

Madeline thought about this for a moment. The numbness in her core kept her from being shocked or repulsed by the question, which left her with only a nagging feeling that there must be something lost in the translation.

“You want me to have sex on stage?” she asked. “In front of a live audience?”

“That is correct,” Harper said.

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