Sunday, January 31, 2010

I'll Crumble For Ya

It was a cold night, and this warm Blueberry Crumble at Richard's Pub in North Kingstown was calling my name. I know I said at the New Year that I was going to embrace healthy eating, but blueberries are health food. They're rich in antioxidants and anti-aging compounds, and a very good source of vitamin C, vitamin K, and manganese.

I just learned that blueberries have their own website, so they are also educational. All that and delicious too - a win all around, if you ask me.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Monkey Bread

I always wonder how certain things become trendy - particularly something with a name like "Monkey Bread." It just does not create an appetizing mental picture.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Still Tasty After All These Years

Sometimes returning to the things I liked as a child is a bad idea. I'm thinking of the Great Candy Stomachache of 1996, when I learned that a thirty-three-year-old cannot match her ten-year-old niece Lik-A-Stix for Lik-A-Stix without consequences.

So I wondered, as I popped a batch of Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls in the oven, if they would be as good as I remembered from weekends of my childhood, or a disappointment. They were GOOD. Better than I remembered, actually, thanks to the Cinnabon cinnamon filling that hadn't been invented back in the 1970s.

Unlike Cook Or Be Cooked for Wii, Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls may actually require a 12-step recovery program. I'll keep doing research and let you know. These are the little sacrifices I make for my readers.

Sunday, January 17, 2010


Seriously: why not just go in the kitchen and cook something?

Also, I find the "alcohol reference" warning hilarous. I'm pretty sure Step One in AA is not "I admit that I am powerless over deglazing and my life has become unmanageable."

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

A New Year's Resolution

My friend Peter announced to a group of friends last week that he is going on a diet. He quickly saw the grave error he had made because whenever he goes to his favorite watering hole, he has to order Bud Light and endure questions about his diet.

He responds by telling everyone it's going well. And it is. He's switched to diet beer. His meals are diet meals, as pictured above. Just yesterday I saw him eating a diet brownie.


Sunday, January 10, 2010

Behold The Kumato

In case the fact that I draw the things I eat has not tipped you off, I admit that I am not cool. I never have been, and at this stage of the game, I'm okay with the fact that I never will be.

Given that I am coolness-challenged, I am unlikely to have heard of the kumato unless a Foodie friend served it to me. Which one did, at a dinner party on New Year's Eve. Basically, a kumato is a brown tomato. Even on the kumato website (and it does have one, that's how cool it is), they are hard pressed tell you what sets it apart from a regular tomato besides its color.

The color is odd. A kumato kind of looks shenanigans have been going on between a tomato, a plum, and a meatball while the light is off in the refrigerator. According to the website, the color, flavor, and size are fairly consistent from kumato to kumato because they are grown hydroponically and "ripened under optimum climactic conditions." All of which makes me think that the fruit has never actually seen the light of day.

The website insists that the taste of a kumato is far superior to a regular tomato, but even they have difficulty describing why. To be honest, the taste didn't knock my socks off. It was good. It was certainly better than a lot of the watery tomatoes available at this time of year. It was maybe a little firmer and sweeter than a regular tomato.

But you know how in late August and early September, the tomatoes at the farmer's market are so good that you make caprese salad almost every night and have BLTs every day for lunch? How the bright red color of the tomatoes makes you start looking for new gazpacho recipes, and you start wondering if you can preserve a bit of this perfect tomato moment by making a big pot of pasta sauce and freezing it?

The kumato wasn't that good. And maybe that's a good thing, because perfect moments become less perfect if you can have them anytime.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Happy New Year, Part Deux

I don't have a lot of food rules, but this is one: if you have a friend who is a caterer and a whole lot of fun, and she invites you to a dinner party, GO.

Which is what I did on New Year's Eve when I was invited to my friend Leppy's house, even though it meant breaking a date with Errol Flynn in The Adventures of Robin Hood. It was a fun way to ring in the new year: dinner with about 8 people where the company was fantastic, the food was wonderful, and there was an opportunity to sing a few show tunes. We were all so busy having a good time that we completely missed the ball dropping in Times Square.

There was a ton of great food, but I just love Leppy's baked olives. What's not to like? It's basically olives and olive oil slowly baked with garlic and rosemary. She claims they are totally easy to make as long as you keep the heat low, but a friend of ours has told me she tried it and they didn't come out right. The friend is Australian, however, so maybe trying to do the whole thing upside down was the problem.

I haven't tried making baked olives yet because I live alone and having to eat a whole pot of olives in a timely manner sounds like a lot of pressure. But I sort of suspect that half of what makes them so good is the atmosphere: gathering around a bowl, dipping bread in the garlicky olive oil, munching on the olives, and listening to Sinatra. Not to mention discussing the rules for playing the (oldest established) permanent floating crap game in New York.