April 25, 2010

If you find yourself in Athens, Ohio

Edited May 3: I couldn't take the layout problems, so once I was back on the laptop I had to fix the formatting on this post.

I've never tried blogging from the bberry, so I don't know how this post is going to look. Angst.

The photo I hope you can see displays the last 4 bites of a $3.75 "Baby Mama Grande" -- baby means small -- from Big Mama's Burritos. The *only* place I ate downtown during speech nationals at Ohio U. My meal budget thanks you.

Lots of rice, chunks of chicken, identifiable black beans? This ain't some nondescript burrito paste. Cilantro. Just-hot-enough sauce. Sigh...

Find Big Mama's maybe 2 blocks off campus, on Court Street near the movie theater.
End mobile restaurant review...

I made some ridiculous mac & cheese today, which will be the subject of a late week real post. I've been avoiding the internet, seeing as I've had 3-D people to talk to on my road trip.

Also? Turns out I'm kind of a mess at spring cooking.

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

April 13, 2010

In praise of local honey

Please bear with me as I share a little story.

I'm enjoying one of my Saturday visits to the SKY Farmer's Market last summer. (They should be up and running, BTW. If you're close to Bowling Green, I really hope you'll check them out!)

Anyway, in amongst the yummy fruits and vegetables, I find a table full of honey. I've never seen anything like it before. It has this deep red color -- like a garnet held up to the light -- as opposed to the brownish look of supermarket honey. It's a shade more expensive than the Kroger brand I usually buy, but I cannot resist.

 See what I mean about the color?

I take the jar home and get in it immediately. I have awesome self control like that. It's different, kind of... minty? And thicker than the store brand, more appropriate to spoon than pour.

A while later Doug comes home, and he's all, "Local honey, huh? Is that for your allergies?"

Buh-wha? Allergies?

"Oh yeah," he continues. "My sister had really bad allergies until a woman from church told her to try local honey."

Well I could see the logic. Allergies come from a misguided immune response, when the body takes pollen for a dangerous invader. Honey comes from pollen. Duhhhh. So consuming it every day should sort of, teach the body that the stuff is harmless. Rather like an allergy shot, only WAY more delicious.

Fast-forward to fall. I have suffered from miserable allergies, every spring and fall, my entire life. That changed a few years back when Claritin-D went over the counter. But I never much cared for the Claritin. It made me kinda jittery and interfered with my sleep. Boo.

Not in fall 2009. I didn't have to take any Claritin. Honestly. Not even one. I'd have never believed it if I hadn't lived it. Happily, I stocked up on Kentucky honey before the market shut down. And finding Georgia honey was a major priority once we got ourselves settled here.

Now? Allergy season is in full swing. Doug is a sniffly, sneezy, crabby piece of crab. And I admit, I'm having a few sneezes and a touch of sore throat. I figure I didn't switch to Georgia honey soon enough for the full effect.

Best part, though? Guilt-free indulgence in the sweet tooth!

I feel like a giant jerk for failing to write this up at least a month ago. If you're suffering already, it's probably too late for local honey to do any good. But think of it this way. We've got a whole summer's worth of farmer's markets coming, during which we can all stock up for fall!

April 09, 2010

All Kinds of Cocktails

Since I'm rambling on the road this week and next, I expect to be a lazy bum of a blogger.

But for today, you can pop on over to All Kinds of Pretty, where you'll find three stylish and scrumptious drink recipes for spring and summer.

I hope while you're there, you'll hang out a while. Browse, search, comment, even ask us a question! The Pretties will love you for it.


April 07, 2010

On food porn and It trends and lost M&M's

From today's New York Times: 
People Who Photograph Food and Display the Pictures Online
In 1825, the French philosopher and gourmand Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin wrote, “Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are.” Today, people are showing the world what they eat by photographing every meal, revealing themselves perhaps more vividly than they might by merely reciting the names of appetizers and entrees.
My college friend Leena uses the term "food porn" to describe such pictures, which I find both hilarious and on point. Especially when applied to some of my grainy, poorly lit monstrosities. I believe the story itself would qualify as "amuse bouche" in Leena-land. She's a witty one.

Here's a question the article poses: Are you obsessed with food porn production? As in, can you bring yourself to take a bite before you snap a photo? I don't have this problem. Getting a picture before I dig in is a daily accomplishment. And I obviously don't publish everything I eat. I dare not. Nobody wants to know about a fat lady finding a half a bag of M&M's in the couch cushions and shouting, "Jackpot!"

I kid. M&M's don't last long enough around here to get lost.

This is one of those rare moments where I get to feel part of an "It" trend. I think the last time it happened was 1997, when I saw South Park's "The Spirit of Christmas" about six months before the series hit Comedy Central.

What a strange, rambly post this morning. I think all this poetry writing has pulled me off my blog game. No matter. Embrace the random! What's on your reading list today?

April 05, 2010

Good morning? Delicious morning!

I am addicted to breakfast burritos. They're easy, quick, and a nice change of pace from classic eggs on toast. Which I also love. I'm a breakfast bimbo.

Breakfast Burritos

What to use:
  • 1/2 lb. breakfast sausage
  • 3 eggs
  • Chopped onion, tomato, and other veggies
  • Shredded sharp cheddar
  • Sour cream
Cut up the sausage into thick slices. I prefer a serrated knife for this project, because it cuts through the plastic sleeve more easily. Use a spatula to flatten the slices to 1/4- to 1/2-inch thickness. It's okay if they come out different sizes.

If the spatula sticks, dab it with Crisco or nonstick spray.

Score the sausage in a crisscrossing pattern, leaving the patties whole.

Only the biggest ones will yield nine pieces.

Run the knife underneath the patties to release them from the board, and place in a skillet on medium to medium-high heat. Once they're slightly brown on both sides, use the spatula to separate them at the score lines.

Some sawing back and forth may be required.

While the sausage is cooking, raid the fridge for vegetables. I always use tomato and onion, but hot peppers, black olives, and fresh cilantro are also favorites. Coarsely chop all vegetable toppings.

Yep. I am a store-brand hussy.

The sausage is ready to come up once all the pieces are good and brown.

I actually like mine a bit on the crispy side.

Remove the pieces and set aside to drain. Pour off some of the grease from the skillet, and use the rest to scramble 3 eggs. It seemed patronizing to explain scrambling eggs, but I will advise beating in a few shakes each of dried cilantro and marjoram. They add a hint of savoriness that makes the eggs pop.

While the eggs are cooking, warm two tortillas. As soon as the eggs are finished cooking, assemble the burritos and serve!

There's shredded cheddar at the bottom of this pile.

Not gonna lie. I am starting to feel in a culinary rut. So I'd like to kick it out to y'all. What do you fix for breakfast when you can't stand another egg on toast?

April 02, 2010

Hooray! My first meme!

I am uncharacteristically giddy today. Sarah, of Harry Times...All Jacked Up and All Kinds of Pretty fame, has tagged me for my very first blog meme! Show your bag, then dump it out and show its contents. Here we go...

The bag:

Ok, so I admit it's not really a handbag. It's a corduroy *cough* makeup case, which I got as a part of a Lancome gift. Don't judge me; the price was right! I stuck the Playstation controller in there to create a sense of scale.

I get ragged a lot for carrying teeny purses. And I grant, this one's perfect for a dash to the store or a night on the town. It is not so great for road trips, rallies, or any sort of all-day adventure. I carry a mid-sized organizer bag for those outings.

Now, join me in your best Brad-Pitt-at-the-end-of-Seven impression: What's in the bag?!?!?!

The guts:

It's like givin y'all a peek at my soul. *Shiver*
  • A fat pen Doug brought me from his office
  • Smokes and a lighter, crucial
  • Gum, for freedom-hating places where I can't smoke
  • Lipstick, lip liner, compact, and brush, which would not have been in there before I joined All Kinds of Pretty
  • My Blackberry, in its posh (if dirty) red case
  • A crumpled receipt from the Publix
  • $1.33
  • My so-called wallet, which is really one of those leather college-ID holders (Since grad school, it has housed my driver's license, debit card, insurance cards, and sometimes cash.)
  • Prescription sunglasses
  • Car keys
  • Blistex, also crucial!
I love my itty-bitty purses. They force me to prioritize and protect me from bad back days. I also enjoy watching people's jaws drop open when I start pulling shit out of there like Mary Poppins.

Now, my turn to tag some people! I call out Cory, queen of MacWorld, and Wendy, the Independent Thinker from Utah.

Be sure to head over to All Kinds of Pretty this weekend. Sarah tagged us all so you should find fabulous handbag porn in abundance (including an eerily similar post to this one, coming soon).

Edited to add: I installed this Wired posts gadget this afternoon. I humbly invite anybody playing dump-the-handbag to add a link here!

Re-edited to add: the Wired posts gadget has now disappeared from my pages. WTF?

Re-re-edited to add: @!#?@!-ing Wired post fields are randomly appearing and disappearing. Or else I'm losin my mind.

April 01, 2010

No foolin

April is National Poetry Writing Month, or NaPoWriMo if you're hip to the lingo. Which I obviously am not. This will be the first year I take on this challenge. Don't expect me to share a new poem every day; I don't expect to come up with anything fit to share every day. But I'll try to throw out a few. Anybody reading this planning to poem it up this month too?

Poetry is man's rebellion against being what he is.  ~James Branch Cabell