Florida community with portmanteau name / SAT 2-27-16 / Crumbly mideastern dessert / Bomberman console / Czar known for his mental instability / Dinner serving in prodigal son parable / Dwarf planet discovered in 2005
Saturday, February 27, 2016
Constructor: Julian Lim
Relative difficulty: Easy-Medium
Word of the Day: HALVA (30D: Crumbly Mideastern dessert) —
tahini based confections of arabic origin, served across the Middle East, South Asia, Central Asia, West Asia, North Africa, the Horn of Africa, the Balkans, Central Europe, Eastern Europe, Malta and the Jewish diaspora. // In global, popular usage it means "desserts" or "sweet", and describes two types of desserts:
Halva may also be based on various other ingredients, including sunflower seeds, nut varieties, beans, lentils, and vegetables such as carrots, pumpkins, yams and squashes.
- This type of halva is slightly gelatinous and made from grain flour, typically semolina. The primary ingredients are clarified butter, flour, and sugar.
- This type of halva is crumbly and usually made from tahini (sesame paste) or other nut butters, such as sunflower seed butter. The primary ingredients are nut butter and sugar.
Halva can be kept at room temperature with little risk of spoilage. However, during hot summer months, it is better kept refrigerated, as it can turn runny after several days. (wikipedia)
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KNOTty parts that required me to exert effort. Those ended up being the interesting parts, as the marquee answers, while nice and smooth, just didn't grab me that much, and there was definitely an ouchy bit here and there in the shorter fill. Seemed pretty clear from the jump that 1A: Anchor line meant "anchor" in the sense of television news anchor. The clue pretty much screamed "I'm trying to trick you, heh heh heh heh [sneer] [wring hands] [twirl mustache]." Classic misdirection language: clue looks nautical, but both its words have different potential spheres of meaning, and thus it's probably not nautical at all—this is how I think on Saturdays. But what do anchors say? "Dateline ..."? "And that's the way it is ..."? "Our top stories now..."? No idea. As usual, I used short stuff to get me going. Today: SEL (4D: Frites seasoning), but only after completely misreading the clue and writing in ÉTÉ. My brain registered something like "season when you fry in France." After I fixed that, I took an odd series of big steps down into the middle-right of the grid.
Had so much trouble parsing 35D: A host that even with -LEWS filled in I didn't get it. I was taking "A" as some kind of symbol or name or something, not as an indefinite article, and "host" can be understood a ton of different ways, of course. So there was some struggling there, but not much. The only other trouble spot was at the crossing of POWHATAN and SOWED, where I had to run the alphabet (and run it almost all the way—stupid "W"!) to get SOWED, which just did not occur to me at all for 45A: Set in motion. In fact, just looking at SO-ED, I couldn't think of *any* letter that could go there. PAWHATAN I just don't know. Maybe I've seen it before. Probably. But it's a jumble of letters to me, largely. There were other things I didn't know or couldn't remember (THAYER, IVAN IV, TAMIAMI), but crosses made them non-issues.
LEO and LEOPARD in same grid ... thumbs down. Liked freshness of HATERS (2D: No fans) and AIR BnB (48D: Website for budget travelers), but most other fill doesn't shine or surprise or delight that much. This is just a solid, workmanlike Saturday. A fine morning diversion.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
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