I need to start blogging again. I need to write more. I need to take charge, goddamnit, and say something interesting. Meanwhile, here is a photo of me at one with the rocks. I am grossly fat and I hate the way I look. I have an eating disorder. All I eat for dinner is pizza and red wine. It’s sorta sad but sorta predictable. I want to be more of a person in ways other than physical. As in, oh, you’re not fat, there’s just more of you to love. BULLSHIT. The fat pushes the love away. Blah blah blah freaking blah. But okay, here I have made a blog post. The first in centuries. So maybe that’s a damn start.
Archive for the ‘Eating and Drinking’ Category
From today’s New York Times comes this thoughtful and thought-provoking, well-written piece by Christopher Kimball. I just had to share it as I greatly admire his sentiments, especially the last paragraph.
THE precursor to Gourmet, and the first truly successful American food publication, was founded in the 1890s and titled The Boston Cooking School Magazine of Culinary Science and Domestic Economics. It eventually changed its name to American Cookery and then died in 1947, forced under, in part, by the founding of Gourmet in 1941 by Earle MacAusland, who had patterned his new brainchild on the catalog-magazine of a famed Boston food purveyor, S. S. Pierce. It was the end of domestic science and food economy and the beginning of the era of the gourmet, “the honest seeker of the summum bonum of living” as set forth in the charter issue. MacAusland’s recipes made few accommodations to reality; he even suggested that subscribers save the issues and use the recipes once rationing had ended.
Thank you, Sally, for sending me the lovely birthday present of a sushi set and chopsticks. As you can see, the set is quite attractive and holds my sushi very nicely. I’ve already used the set TWICE. I’m so elegant. And it was so charmingly HOPEFUL and downright OPTIMISTIC of Sally to send me a set of two — thinking that some day I will have a guest in my apartment. It’s great to eat take-out food off of real dishes. It is a treasure to have long-time, age-old, seemingly forever friends. Oh, I could tell you silly things about little Sally Ann. They broke the mold with that one for sure. I am truly blessed, even though I’m a swishy old curmudgeon with too many hot damn opinions!
I have been baking up a storm lately and giving away these delicious mint brownies to everyone I can think of. My niece even received hers safely in Panama last week! This weekend I baked two more batches because I thought of many more people who were deserving of these tasty treats. The recipe from Martha Stewart Everyday Food is a breeze. I highly recommend using bittersweet chocolate rather than semi-sweet for that extra ZOWIE of chocolate flavor. Ghiradelli is the preferred brand of the Flaming Curmudgeon. Over the past couple of years I have streamlined the process and I always make two batches at once. I used to measure everything out ahead of time but now I find that isn’t necessary. However, here are a few tips to help you if you want to make them yourself.
- Buy the Peppermint Patties in bulk and put 25 into separate plastic freezer bags and freeze them so whenever you decide to whip up some brownies, you don’t have to go out and buy the candy or count out 25 patties. The night before I’m going to bake (or the morning of baking) I transfer unwrap the individual patties, put them back in the plastic bags and place them in the fridge. Unwrapping the candies is time-consuming and mindless. Perhaps you have a child in your household who could handle this task. Or a slow spouse or infirm in-law?
- Do not try a 9″ square pan. Use the 8″ square pan.
- Lining the pan with aluminum foil can be frustrating. Turn the pan upside-down and use it to form the aluminum foil. Remove the foil, flip the pan over and the foil will pretty much slip right into the pan. Make it tight.
- Butter the living hell out of the foil. Do not skimp. Don’t be all prissy about heart attacks or cholesterol. If you don’t cover every nook and cranny with butter you will be pulling slivers out of your finished brownies for hours. During baking, the sugar from the Peppermint Patties oozes out and then caramelizes. Through the use of plenty of butter, the foil will peel off of your brownies effortlessly. Trust the Flaming Curmudgeon on this.
- I do not use the toothpick test. In my oven the edges of the brownies will be finished ahead of the batter in the center of the pan. I just decided when they look like more cooking would burn the outer edges (yuck). Mine cook for around 48 minutes.
- After cooling and removing the foil from the batch, I cut the batch into 25 brownies rather than the suggested 16. One of my therapists described these brownies as “lethal” and they are. Extremely rich, intensely sweet. You do not want to eat more than one in a sitting.
July 31, 1988
He had spent the previous evening talking with a one-armed woman in a bar in the theatre district. They had shared one of those almost interesting conversations shared by all people in such situations. Neither wanted to go home to a sweltering apartment just yet.
His life seemed to be filled with just this sort of ridiculously lonely conversation. One week previously, another Sunday, after a quaint party at the new, lovely apartment of one of his successful friends – a party during which he had NOT been introduced to Dick Cavett – he wandered out into the steamy, unforgiving night and easily found his way to one of the city’s innumerable gay watering holes. By some strange twist of fate he had been drinking beer that evening, so he went up to the generic bartender and ordered a Rolling Rock. He felt embarrassed when he paid with a fifty dollar bill, but it was all he had. He hated and loved being alone, especially in a gay bar.
That night the place was not crowded. He assumed a coy stance and waited, drinking his beers quickly and smoking his cigarettes with fierce concentration. He smiled at two men. One of them – the shorter of the two – approached him a bit later.
I love to keep my flaming breath minty fresh each and every lovely day. But on this historic occasion, I have chosen Presidential Peppermints! I hope you all have a marvelous Inauguration celebration.
Mr. Piven, it is time for you to shut up. Eat some crow, eat some dirt, eat a huge heaping steaming ovenful of humble pie. Anything but sushi. Shut up, go away. I really thought that by now you would have gone away and dropped this crass ludicrousness. But then, you are little but an ego driven void, needful of attention you have done little to deserve. Look at your career. On Ellen you played a loud-mouthed egomaniac. On Entourage ditto. The character in Mamet’s Speed-the-Plow is just more of the same. You can call it acting. I call it the constant walking of the untrained bull mastiff that is your ego hoping it will shit in the gutter and someone else can clean it up. It’s so heartwarming to read the same utter bullshit about you every day on some internet site or other. You blather on, poor little you, foresaken and misunderstood, desperate to prove something that if it were actually true, you might be slightly embarrassed to air publicly. You’ve proven your point. The point that for you, constant media attention is more important than integrity or work ethic. So sorry that daddy never found you interesting enough to touch you down there or even the most undiscerning and adventurous priests never placed their cold holy hands under your choir robe. But, please, have your publicist order you up a puu puu platter of dignity, humility and reticence and enjoy it heartily as you gaze into your mirror eating out your very heart. Then, call me, and we’ll plan the 2009 Mercury Poisoning Telethon hosted by your ego — which, I’m sure the world will not be shocked to discover – can also sing, rather well, and rather loudly, and will soon be releasing an album of self-penned songs.
Oy freaking vey? Just when I thought I’d heard it all I come across this nonsense on the internet today. PETA’s new useless campaign to get humans to stop eating anything but gravel sandwiches (until, of course, they decide that minerals are people too!). Over at Dlisted a link took me to this article at news.com.au which begins:
A CAMPAIGN to rename fish as “sea kittens” in order to improve their image has been ridiculed by the Federal Opposition. Outspoken animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is using the “sea kitten” name as part of its push to restrict fishing.
This sort of abject fire-breathing malarky boils my last nerve. I have a solution. Let’s all start eating only members of PETA.