Showing 1 - 10 of 83 posts found matching keyword: food

I typically say something snarky here, but I'm proud of that pasta

That there, that's homemade spaghetti. And I made it! And it tastes great!

Yeah, I know. People have been making homemade pasta — essentially just flour and eggs — for centuries, maybe millennia. But none of those people have ever been in my kitchen.

As it happens, my father gave me the pasta roller/cutter and drying rack you can see in the image above for Christmas... Christmas 2019. (I might even have asked for them.) Which means I've had them throughout the pandemic of 2020-21. Despite all the "free" time that gave me away from restaurants, I never made any pasta until now. Why not? I guess I was intimidated. I thought it would be a lot of work. Turns out it is.

I got the recipe from my favorite cookbook, The Joy of Cooking, and I used advice I've picked up over the years watching Joe Bastianich criticize would-be Italian cooks on MasterChef. ("Salty like the ocean!") I understand now why that show always has so much footage of people struggling with pasta rollers. While the dough itself is a breeze, the little home consumer counter-mounted pasta roller is a bastard. I christened mine "Mussolini's Revenge."

So it is all a lot of trouble, but it might be worth it. I can now attest firsthand: fresh pasta is good eating.

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Ah! I remembered what I forgot on Thursday!

I was going to mention that I have now eaten at Wishbone Fried Chicken.

That might seem like a strange thing to say in 2021, considering that the Wishbone Fried Chicken franchise went defunct decades ago.

Who needs a Colonel when you can have a Captain?
"Captain Wishbone" advertisement appearing The Red and Black, November 13, 1969

Wishbone Fried Chicken was founded in 1960 by Atlantic Company, formerly Atlantic Ice and Coal Co. which had been created from a merger of three other companies in 1903 by one Ernest Woodruff, the man who bought Coca-Cola from Asa Candler. After a series of more mergers and name changes, Atlantic Jackson-Atlantic Munford Inc. — ultimately re-named by CEO Dillard Munford in honor of the company president, Dillard Munford — had as many as 102 Wishbone locations being run out of Atlanta in 1971, some of which were located inside Munford's own Majik Market convenience stores. (Franchisee solicitations claim there were 57 total Wishbones franchisees in 8 states in 1973.) After selling out to corporate raiders in 1988, Munford (the company, not the man) was declared bankrupt in 1990, and its assets were liquidated or shuttered. The refrigeration company was spun-off to become Americold, which still exists. Wishbone Fried Chicken doesn't.

But the location just a block off the court square in Newnan, Georgia, on the same lot it has occupied since 1970, perseveres with its original signage and franchise signature triangular potato cakes in pecks and barrels. The store has a rabid local following which always intimidated me, though I can now understand why its fans are so committed. They serve some pretty darn good fried chicken, even if "un-greasy" is not exactly how I would describe it.

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Every Batman fan worth his salt knows "The Joker's Comedy of Errors!", better known as "The Joker's Boner" story. Originally presented in Batman #66, Aug/Sep 1951, it can be summed up in one panel:

Extra, extra! Read all a-boner!
This is but one of 6 "boner" newspaper headlines in this story.

If you haven't read the story or you struggle with context clues, you might find it helpful to know that my trusty 1977 Webster's New Twentieth Century Dictionary of the English Language Unabridged defines "boner" thusly:

bōn´ẽr, n. a stupid or silly blunder. [Slang.]

As Batman #66 proves, newspaper editors love boners. Which brings us to the point of today's post.

In order to fill column space As a public service, The Newnan Times-Herald newspaper reprints food inspection reports from county restaurants. It's usually a lot of repeated warnings that store managers aren't checking the mold levels in their ice machines. (Come on, guys! It's right there in the Georgia Department of Public Health Rules and Regulations, Chapter 511-6-1-.05-7-b-5-iv-II!)

This month, in honor of Independence Day, the paper rewarded loyal readers by giving our local hot dog stand a boner of its own:

I eat hotdongs with relish!

Oysters really are an aphrodisiac!

For the record, the restaurant calls itself "The Half Shell Oyster Bar & Hot Dog Shop." Rumor has it their menu was selected because the city wouldn't let them install an oven in their original location downtown, so they chose items they could cook with steam. (Welcome to Newnan!)

I've never had the oysters, but the chili dogs *are* pretty exciting.

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I decided I needed something sweet to eat, so I made the Southern Living Chocolate Pound Cake with Chocolate Glaze. It's an easy recipe, and everything went great...

Until I moved the cake from the cooling rack to the serving dish for icing...

And dropped it.

Dammit. No cake for me.

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So, when I took down my Santa Claus decoration for Christmas, I left two anchoring poles embedded in the front yard. Rather than let me pull them out, Mother insisted that I create more decorations for other holidays.

Turns out, I've got nothing else to do.

Introducing my Easter Bunny:

Easter Bites Back

Here's another beside the front door for better scale.

The great American chocolate bar.

I'm already working on the next piece. (I had to brave a trip to Michael's, where only 10 customers are allowed inside at a time, to pick up some blue paint.) I'll show it off when I get closer to July.

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One of these days I'll finally achieve the perfection of my great-grandmother's boiled white icing recipe

Happy Birthday, Mom!

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Second try on gingerbread cookies. This time I used a 50% smaller cutter, but I only cut the bake time by 25%. Oops. As a result, they're a little crispy. At least they're well dressed.

Everybody's crazy 'bout a sharp-dressed gingerbread man

Frankly, the taste is nice enough, but they could be burnt crisp and I'd still like them. The scents of gingerbread and peppermint are the best things about Christmas.

Next year: colored icing. (I think I'll make that my New Year's Resolution.)

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Last year I vowed that instead of gingerbread houses in 2019, I would make gingerbread men. It was a good decision.

I looked at a bunch of gingerbread cookie recipes before deciding which to use. (I didn't want to use my house recipe because I wanted cookies that didn't have the texture of drywall.) Like apple pie recipes, most gingerbread recipes are very similar, deferring primarily in the ratio of flower flour to butter. The one I decided I liked best I found in the Tis the Season Holiday Cookbook (2000) by Mary Engelbreit. It must have been another good good decision. I made 2 dozen on Friday, and they were all gone by Sunday.

As you can see, I had some trouble with piping the royal icing. My first try was too thin (overcompensating for the 2018 disaster), and the second batch popped the seam of my makeshift Ziploc pastry bag. I got the hang of it only relatively late in the game.

Now that I know what I'm doing, I guess I'll just have to make some more.

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My contribution to Thanksgiving dinner 2019:

Pie. Apple Pie.

It's not just the first apple pie I've ever made from scratch, it's the first pie I've ever attempted. Turned out well, too. The recipe came from the Better Homes and Gardens Complete Step-By-Step Cookbook (1978). An oldie but a goody.

I'll have to raise the bar next year, but in the meantime, my next goal is gingerbread men for Christmas. I'll keep you posted.

ADDENDUM 1: I used Honeycrisp apples. Mom already had some Honeycrisp she wasn't enjoying as eating apples, so into the pie they went despite Friend Robin (and the recipe) calling for Granny Smith. (In fairness to the recipe, Honeycrisp wasn't introduced to the market until 1991, so it would have been real odd for a 1978 cookbook to recommend them.)

ADDENDUM 2: Leaving dinner, my aunt Kelley asked for "a small slice" to take home with her. As I started cutting what I considered a small slice, she shouted, "Not that small!" The piece that she ended up taking was not what I would call small, but I guess Kelley knows what she's doing. She's the lawyer, after all.

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WorkWise software has taken the unusual step of blogging about Google searches for ice cream flavor by U.S. state to drive traffic to their website. It's a great idea because it works. I was just there looking at their breakdown of flavors to see if any states preferred my personal favorite flavor, mint chocolate chip. (Answer: only New Jersey.) It turns out that exactly one state loves Superman.

That's right. According to Google Trends data, the flavor that citizens of Michigan search for most is Superman. Technically, this doesn't mean that anyone in Michigan is nuts about tri-colored blue/red/yellow dairy treats, just that a whole lot of people were curious enough about it to type it into Google. My guess is they were actually asking "what flavor is Superman ice cream?"

I've seen Superman ice cream in the wild, though I'm not remotely adventurous enough to have tried it. I'm pretty sure that "blue" isn't a flavor, and whatever it tastes like, I can't imagine that it goes well with lemon and cherry.

Interestingly, Edy's/Dreyer's makes a DC Comics-themed line of ice cream flavors which naturally includes a Superman variety. You might think it would be Superman flavored. It's not.


Personally, I'd stay away from Krypton™ Cookie Dough ice cream. Everyone knows Krypton explodes.

While "cookie dough light ice cream" might seem like a missed opportunity for a Superman-branded flavor, the most popular Google Trends search was far and away cookies and cream (the favorite in 13 states, including Georgia). If cookies are the American way, then I guess it makes sense that's what Superman should be selling.

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To be continued...

 

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