The Late Movies: My Favorite Misanthrope

In case you haven’t heard of him, Charlie Brooker is a British national treasure — and also a sneering, acidly sarcastic, fast-talking, hilarious journalist and TV presenter whose distinctly British tear-downs of everything from the state of TV to politics and video games have earned him a reputation as a no-holds-barred opinionator. Here’s the best of what I could find on YouTube — let me know what you think. BTW, he swears a lot, so these are definitely NSFW.

Charlie cleverly deconstructs the average news broadcast:

Charlie’s take on the differences between American and British TV news.

A quick — and extremely well-observed — guide to the reality of “reality” TV editing.

A snapshot of the history of video gaming. Great until these two Scottish guys start talking; I’ll be damned if I can make out half of what they’re saying.

Charlie’s take on violent video games.

This is a full 30 minute episode of a special documentary program Charlie hosted called HOW TV RUINED YOUR LIFE — and it’s absolutely brilliant. Watch the whole thing. What else have you got to do?

The darkness of American television.

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The Simple Way to Reheat Your French Fries and Not Have Them Turn Into a Soggy Mess

Some restaurant dishes are made to be doggy-bagged and reheated in the microwave the next day. Not French fries: The more crispy and delectable they are when they first arrive on your table, the more of a soggy disappointment they’ll be when you try to revive them at home. But as The Kitchn recently shared, there’s a secret to making leftover fries you’ll actually enjoy eating.

The key is to avoid the microwave altogether. Much of the appeal of fries comes from their crunchy, golden-brown exterior and their creamy potato center. This texture contrast is achieved by deep-frying, and all it takes is a few rotations around a microwave to melt it away. As the fries heat up, they create moisture, transforming all those lovely crispy parts into a flabby mess.

If you want your fries to maintain their crunch, you need to recreate the conditions they were cooked in initially. Set a large pan filled with about 2 tablespoons of oil for every 1 cup of fries you want to cook over medium-high heat. When you see the oil start to shimmer, add the fries in a single layer. After about a minute, flip them over and allow them to cook for half a minute to a minute longer.

By heating up fries with oil in a skillet, you produce something called the Maillard Reaction: This happens when high heat transforms proteins and sugars in food, creating the browning effect that gives fried foods their sought-after color, texture, and taste.

After your fries are nice and crisp, pull them out of the pan with tongs or a spatula, set them on a paper towel to absorb excess oil, and sprinkle them with salt. Now all you need is a perfect burger to feel like you’re eating a restaurant-quality meal at home.

[h/t The Kitchn]

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