Archive for November, 2010

15 November, 2010

Bacon Waffles: First Attempt

by gorthx

Bacon waffles have long been a topic of discussion around the B&T office. Bittman’s How to Cook Everything says you can lay 2-3 strips of raw bacon across the waffle batter, and the bacon will cook with the waffle. “Tschah!” said my Official Taste Tester. “I bet that won’t work.”

I was compelled to try it anyway. The rare confluence of spare time on a weekend morning, plus waffle batter and bacon on hand, was not an opportunity I was prepared to pass up.

buttermilk waffle batter from the aforementioned Bittman’s
regular store bacon
belgian waffle iron

I threw a strip of uncooked bacon over the last waffle. (Yes, the last one – why didn’t I think of this earlier?)

To my surprise, it really did cook with the waffle. Sure, it doesn’t turn crispy like it would under the broiler – it’s more like Canadian bacon – but it’s definitely done. I thought it was quite tasty. The Taste Tester protested he wasn’t sure he liked it, but devoured his share anyway.

The downside? Lots of grease. The waffle under the bacon strip was quite saturated with it. (A bonus if you need to season your iron.) You want to eat these immediately after taking them from the waffle iron (as in, stand there at the counter with your plate) or the waffle will collapse.

Next time we’ll try a yeast-raised batter, which gives waffles a crisper shell, fluffier interior, and generally more structural integrity than the buttermilk recipe. We’ll also try two kinds of bacon, regular store bacon and what I call “hippie bacon”, from Deck Family Farm, which tends to be very lean.

5 November, 2010

Back from PgWest!

by gorthx

I’m back from three days in sunny (yes, really) San Francisco. As usual for a PostgreSQL conference, I had a good time and had my brain nicely melted. A few talk highlights:

Query Planner (R. Haas): When investigating problematic queries, the big thing to look for is differences between your row estimates from EXPLAIN, and the actual rows from EXPLAIN ANALYZE.

PCI Compliance (D. Patel): I want to try this out:, even though it doesn’t seem to be currently maintained.

pg_upgarde (B. Momjian): 44 seconds to upgrade a 150G database with pg_upgrade.

System Tables (R. Haas): Columns stay in pg_attribute, even if you drop them; the attisdropped field gets set to true. (I have about 5 lines of notes from this talk. I think I was sitting there saying “wooooow” the rest of the time.)

Scaling with Postgres (R. Treat): Perfect relational modeling is not the goal when you’re thinking about scaling.

Temporal Datatypes (J. Davis): Scheduling conflicts will be enforced in real life if they are not enforced in the database.

Of course, the hallway track was where I really learned the most. I got some good comments on my talk, which I’ll be incorporating into its next iteration. I also met a lot of new people, mostly SF locals, and I finally got to meet Dave Page, Robert Haas, Jignesh Shah, and the elusive Greg Stark.

There were some glitches this time: there were no lightning talks ;), room and schedule updates weren’t communicated effectively to attendees, and we had a few speaker no-shows (and no apparent backup plan). I really want to thank Rob Treat for stepping up & filling one of the empty slots!