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15/12/2018 07:06:13  

Old, lifeless pastries are delicious rebaked as decadent toasties or an enterprising boozy pudding

It’s perhaps unlikely that you, I or any other food-loving individual would waste a croissant, pain au chocolat or any other pastry, but it does happen, and not just in the home. As a chef, I’ve seen first-hand how bakeries, cafes and hotels waste as much as half the patisserie treats they display each day. Pastries go stale quickly, making it tricky to manage stock, but with a little tenacity, they can be upcycled into something new and luxurious.

If your pastries are lifeless, simply give them a quick blast in a hot oven. Day-old croissants make a decadent toasted sandwich when filled with cheese and tomato. If croissants are two days old, try a deluxe version of eggy bread: dip the croissant in egg, then gently fry in butter, before serving sweet with icing sugar or savoury with salt, pepper and fried smoked tempeh or bacon.

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15/12/2018 07:06:12  

As a child, I loved taking part in the church play my parents organised. In my teens I grew to resent it. As an atheist adult, could I find an alternative?

On Christmas morning 2009, after my customary breakfast in bed of a chocolate orange accompanied by a large portion of foreboding, I pad downstairs to locate my parents. Ah, there’s my father. He’s dressed for church, not in his Sunday best, nor even in his problematic lay preacher’s cassock (white, pointed hood) – but in what appears to be a star-adorned navy curtain shrunk to fit the dimensions of a child’s playhouse.

“And if we go over your lines one more time…” prompts my mother, with the maniacally bright smile of someone who has been entrusted with raising morale during the apocalypse.

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15/12/2018 07:06:11  

Who will pick up the Glitterball trophy? Plus! An antidote to literary awards and a party with Olly Murs

After 13 weeks of nail-biting competition, the race for the Glitterball trophy comes down to four couples, each of which will perform two routines – one chosen by the judges and the other picked by the dancers themselves – plus a show dance to finish. Stacey Dooley, Ashley Roberts, Faye Tozer and Joe Sugg are the surviving celebs. Tozer has been bagging plenty of 10s, but after her American Smooth in week 11 it would take a brave soul to bet against a fairytale finish for first-timer Dooley. Mike Bradley

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15/12/2018 07:06:03  

Billions more have just been announced for the delayed London rail line - yet northern infrastructure projects are killed off

It’s been a great week to bury bad government. Two of the greatest infrastructure projects in the land hit financial grief. Normally it would have been headline news. Instead no one shows the slightest interest. The Department for Transport has long had a simple agenda. A cynic might sum it up as: give London anything it wants, but starve the north of investment until it gets the point and moves south. It is called regional policy, applied ruthlessly since 2010.

A rail tunnel has been built under London, at nearly twice the diameter of any other line and for no other reason than to spend splendidly. Crossrail this year has demanded an extra £2.3bn on a price tag of some £15bn, with no known completion date. Worse is happening at its sister project HS2, whose £56bn budget – up from an original £34bn – has gripped its backers in mendacity for five years or more. Leaks from all over are now predicting it will cost from £80bn (the Treasury) to more than £100bn, with no realistic completion date.

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15/12/2018 07:06:03  

Steven, 23, cyber security graduate, and Craig, 26, policy adviser

What were you hoping for?
Good food and drink with somebody who wouldn’t run out the door when they saw me.

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15/12/2018 07:06:01  

Fake Christmas at my father-in-law’s is good practice for whatever horrors the real thing has in store

It’s the time of year when people suffer from Festive Stress, but I am already experiencing symptoms of its aftermath, Post-Festivity Stress Disorder.

For us, the holiday season begins with Fake Thanksgiving – lunch with my wife’s American relatives on the weekend before Thanksgiving, which falls on an ordinary British Thursday and is therefore unsuitable for celebrating. This year, I followed it up with Real Thanksgiving, flying to the US three days later. Next comes Fake Christmas, hosted annually by my father-in-law some weeks before the 25th, when he is always in Cornwall. Let’s put it this way: I’m on my third turkey, and the Christmas tree decorations are still in the attic.

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15/12/2018 07:05:27  

The philosopher was fascinated by the United States. The author of a new study says the modern equivalents of his ‘American insurgents’ should read the Frenchman’s work

On a typical day, Denis Diderot might write about ancient Chinese music in the morning, study the mechanics of a cotton mill in the afternoon, then work on a play after dinner.

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15/12/2018 07:05:22  

Researchers at the University of Geneva Switzerland have used NASA's Hubble telescope to find an exoplanet that's evaporating. The exoplanet, GJ 3470b, shows signs of losing hydrogen in its atmosphere, causing it to shrink. USA Today reports: The study is part of exploration into "hot Neptunes," planets that are the size of Neptune, sit very close to their star, and have atmospheres as hot at 1,700 degrees Fahrenheit, says NASA. Finding a "hot Neptune" is rare because they sit so close to their star and tend to evaporate more quickly. In the case of GJ 3470b, scientists classify it as a "warmer" Neptune because it sits farther away from its star. The exoplanet discovered by astronauts is losing its atmosphere at a rate 100 times faster than a previous "warmer" Neptune planet discovered a few years before, according to a study published Thursday in the journal "Astronomy & Astrophysics." The planet sits 3.7 million miles from its star. For comparison, Earth is 92.9 million miles from the sun. Researchers say these "hot Neptune" planets shrink in size and morph into "Super Earths," versions of our planet that are massive and more rocky.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

15/12/2018 07:03:51  
15/12/2018 07:02:50  
15/12/2018 07:02:18  

Opal Tometi, who co-founded the movement, says visiting Nigeria as a child changed her life.
15/12/2018 07:02:11  

We all like getting Christmas post, but what if you didn't have anyone to send you so much as a card?
15/12/2018 07:02:10  

The drone was being flown at more than twice the allowed height.
15/12/2018 07:02:08  

An appeal was launched after the ticket's owner failed to claim the jackpot prize.
15/12/2018 07:02:07  

Buying teachers at Rhosybol community school a festive treat will not get you on Santa's nice list.
15/12/2018 07:02:03  

Ahead of the upcoming final, the celebrity dancers reveal their competition highlights.
15/12/2018 06:06:09  

US intervention comes as Canadian officials granted access in China to Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor

The US secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, has said China should free two Canadian citizens who were detained this week following the arrest in Canada of a senior Huawei executive on a US extradition warrant.

Pompeo’s comments were the first by a senior US official on the Canadians’ arrests, which the country’s prime minister Justin Trudeau said could escalate a growing trade conflict between China and the United States.

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15/12/2018 06:05:15  

Joint USAF/NOAA Solar Geophysical Activity Report and Forecast 14 December 2018
15/12/2018 06:05:13  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Scientific American: A panel of 19 scientists drawn from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine recommended yesterday that the Department of Energy should continue an international experiment on nuclear fusion energy and then develop its own plan for a "compact power plant." A panel of 19 scientists drawn from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine recommended yesterday that the Department of Energy should continue an international experiment on nuclear fusion energy and then develop its own plan for a "compact power plant." But as the National Academies' report noted, major challenges must be overcome to reach these goals, beginning with how to contain and control a burning "plasma" of extremely hot gas, ranging from 100 million to 200 million degrees Celsius, that can produce more heat than it consumes. The report calls the resulting plasma "a miniature sun confined inside a vessel." The world's biggest experiment intended to create and draw energy from burning plasma is under construction at Cadarache, France. It's called the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) project, and its centerpiece is a large, doughnut-shaped, Russian-inspired reactor called a tokamak. Several member nations have already developed their own national programs, and the assembled National Academies experts concluded that the United States should eventually follow, once the ITER experiment shows there are ways to contain and manipulate a sustained fusion reaction. "It is the next critical step in the development of fusion energy," says the report.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

15/12/2018 06:02:46  
15/12/2018 06:02:14  

The move angers the Russian Orthodox Church, which sees Ukraine's parishes as under its jurisdiction.
15/12/2018 06:02:14  

The challenge from a coalition of 20 US states is now likely to go to the US Supreme Court.
15/12/2018 06:02:07  

It's been a busy week in British politics, from Parliamentary squabbles to meetings with European leaders, and a confidence vote.
15/12/2018 06:02:06  

Campaign group's analysis suggests the spray is too often used "unsafely and inappropriately".
15/12/2018 06:02:05  

Politicians must compromise and find a plan that a majority in Parliament can support, minister says.