Tag Archives: food

Valentines I’ll Never Send

To the cliché box of assorted chocolates:

I’m have mixed feelings about you, to be honest. I’m not big on sweets to begin with, and unless there’s a map of your assortment on the lid, it’s always a gamble with you. There are really only three or four really good flavors which means that my anticipation of biting into a caramel or a chocolate cream could be met with the disappointment of sinking my teeth into the one filled with what I assume is neon pink Play-Doh.

If you so choose to continue to hide your best work, I will so choose to continue sticking a toothpick in the bottom of each piece to try and determine the flavor. All’s fair in love and chocolate.

To people who don’t say thank you when I hold the door open for them:

I will yell “You’re welcome!” as loud as I can because it’s important to lead by example. At least give a courtesy head nod. It’s really not that hard. I only bring this up because it could be an indication or a repeated behavior—not thanking people for letting you merge, walking by when people bless you after you sneeze, or as we’re talking about today, relationships.

 valentines

In other words, I’m a helper. YOU’RE WELCOME.

To the person who invented lasagna, pizza and basically any Italian food:

I hope at some point a very important person sat you down and told you, “You are a great human being.” True, I’ve been scorned by a lover a time or two by eating it too soon and burning the roof of my mouth, but love hurts. However, I can’t hold both a grudge and my fork, so today–I salute you.

To employment:

Okay. I know we’ve been taking a break, but I’m totally ready to hook back up again. I don’t want it to be boring, unhealthy and mundane like it was before, but I also don’t need fireworks every night. Something steady, something dependable, something that challenges me and uses my skills in a creative and constructive way. You have my number, so please, feel free to use it.

To the guy at the Dollar Store buying a felt rose, condoms and potted meat:

I’m not sure if I should be disgusted at this unique combination of purchases or admire you for your effort and optimism. The fake rose is admirable, but if you are in fact planning for a romantic evening with someone other than yourself—as your purchase of condoms instead of lotion and Kleenex would suggest—the addition of potted meat is quite troubling.

Putting aside the fact I only eat plants and would rather eat the metal pot than the “meat” your potted meat contains, the Dollar Store does offer a variety of other edible creations that might help to set a more “romantic” mood—canned oysters (aphrodisiac!) crackers or even a cupcake mix (chocolate!) might be a better solution.

And condoms from the Dollar Store? Remember that you get what you pay for, and take note of the woman behind me the other day who filled her cart with at-home pregnancy tests, ovulation kits and Cheetos. Sometimes you should spring for the upgraded model, my friend.

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Food Marketing 101

As the commercials during the Super Bowl prove, success is pretty much just all about marketing and how you present a certain product.

bathrobe

Fashion aside, this is especially true with food.

Would you prefer to eat “soup” or “food-flavored tea”? Drink “coffee” or “bean water”? In other words, some items have greatly benefitted from clever categorization, while others could use a little bit of help in the PR department.

GOOD

Salads–Salad has become synonymous with “healthy,” due in part to the fact that they adopted “salad dressing” as an accompaniment instead of the phrase, “lettuce gravy.” Things like a traditional salad with greens and veggies helped ensure the “healthy” illusion of salad that things like taco salad and potato salad have benefited from. You know, a burrito dumped into a fried shell and slathered with sour cream and three shreds of lettuce and a bowl of mayonnaise with specks of potato. Vegetables for the win!

Head Cheese—Lies! NOT CHEESE!

Tofu–While I’m a vegan, I can’t tolerate soy so tofu is out. However, I used to be able to eat it and know that tofu is basically just a codependent block of coagulated bean curd. It has no flavor and takes on whatever it’s cooked with, but I guess “tofu” sounds better than “codependent coagulated curd,” although whether it tastes better or not is up for debate. 

Sweet Breads—Lies! NOT BREAD!

English Muffins–Muffins are generally thought of as a breakfast food, which we’ll get to in a minute, but English muffins are not really a “muffin.” They’re more like a butter sponge one has to extract from the (unplugged) toaster with a knife, putting to use the hours you played Operation as a kid. However, I guess “butter sponge” sounds a little less fancy (but honestly, still kind of delicious.)

Fortune Cookies–Cookie Monster would lose his shit if presented with this as a “cookie.” The fortune cookie is to cookies as Kim Kardashian is to acting. You can label it whatever you want, but that doesn’t mean that it’s any good.  Every fortune should just read, “This is a stale imitation of food and you could eat this piece of paper and not know the difference.” 

QUESTIONABLE

Radish--This gets the award for the most tasteless vegetable that also has that capacity to burn your mouth with each bite. It’s a polarizing food, which is why I see this as being how it was named:

Person 1: I love this vegetable! It’s so rad!

Person 2: Meh. It’s not that great. It’s more like rad-ish. Hey! Let’s go with that!

BAD 

Now let’s take a look at the names of foods that could use a little more help.

Milk Duds–While many people enjoy spending three hours trying to chew three small chocolate caramel confections, they are essentially named after a dairy product that has failed. I can just imagine how that meeting went:

“Hey! What should we call these? Chewy Chocolate Caramels?  Lactose Losers? I know! Let’s go with Milk Duds!”

Muffins–Let’s be honest here. While English muffins benefit from the reputation of muffins, muffins could greatly up their cred by going with what they essentially are—naked cupcakes. For most versions, adding frosting is the only distinction between the two, but I guess I understand the hesitation.

It’s acceptable to eat a 500-calorie muffin for breakfast under the guise of “healthy” whereas eating something with “cake” in the name wouldn’t work. Unless it’s a pancake smothered in syrup, of course, because that just makes logical sense.

Ugli Fruit–This is technically a form of tangelo and while a bit unsightly, was the term “ugli” really necessary? Were these people trying to make them sound unappealing so that they could hoard them all for themselves? I would go with “unique” fruit or “has a great personality” fruit. “Ugli” just seems a bit cruel.

Leftovers–Finally, people complain about leftovers all the time, most likely due in part to the fact that they’re considered scraps that are just “left over.” True, sometimes they’re not as stellar when performing in the second act, but if you think of them as “edible encores” it might spice things up a bit.

Speaking of spice, how did Allspice corner the market on that one? Talk about a confident condiment.

At any rate, bon appetite, my friends.

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P.S. Facebook has changed it’s reach AGAIN and only 5-10 percent of people are seeing my updates. To ensure you’re not missing a thing, add my Facebook page to your “Interests” lists, subscribe to my blog or follow me on Twitter.

Meghan of “Clean Eats, Fast Feets” Has Issues

Today is the last Friday in my Blogger Issues series, and before I present today’s blogger, I want to thank everyone who has participated. This doesn’t mean I’ll never do these things again, but I’m going to take a break for a bit. Sorry, but you’re going to be stuck with only my rambles for at least the next few months.

But today I’m so excited to introduce you to one of my favorite food bloggers. You might not know this about me, but a majority of the blogs that I read are vegan/veggie/food/health related.

Go figure. 

However,  I also think that a lot of health blogs are full of crap and promote restrictive, fad lifestyles that are ridiculous and, well, full of crap. That’s why I enjoy Meghan, as she loves veggies but also loves cheese. She loves exercise but also loves rest. On top of all that, she’s funny, so you know that we get along well.

So without further ado, here she is!

Meg_&_the_Pretzel

That’s a pretzel. Carbs are my soul mate. 

Name: Meghan McCarthy

Blog: Clean Eats, Fast Feets

Give us a little bit of background about yourself in three sentences or less.

Yeah, about those three sentences…

Meghan is a number cruncher by day and a Blogging Ninjress by night. She lives in Cleveland, Ohio with her two felines and occasional Hubby. Her favorite activities include cooking, exercising, and farmers marketing. In her spare time, she enjoys making a mockery of sentence structure and twisting words and phrases to better meet her devilish needs and more closely align with her nefarious ways.

Meghan’s blog posts are virtual kitchen parties, music included, veggies always welcome. She’s been known to swear a holy crapton, and just recently saved the life of a budding young chipmunk. She’s a modern day Joan of Arc without the martyr part. Or the Saint part. Or the French part. Or perhaps the Joan of Arc part.      

First thing you think of when you wake up in the morning.

For the love of all that is good and holy, Snooze!

What’s the one “issue” or frustration annoying you the most right now?

My inability to crack the space-time continuum. As much as I try to squeeze this research into my days, I always seem to run out of yep, you guessed it, time. I blame the snooze button. 

Three websites you visit every day.

AOL because I’m retro or as I prefer to be known, The Original Hipster. Facebook, where I’ll be the first to admit I have a problem, and Weather.Com because windows are so ’90s.

What’s an unusual talent and/or accomplishment you could never put on a resume?

I’m hypermobile, which means I can bend my body like a pretzel. I make Gumby look stiff.   

If you could rule the land for one day, what laws would you create and enforce?

Inappropriate shenanigans make me happy. Therefore, I would deem all bananas should be consumed publicly. Bonus points for making and maintaining eye contact. 

You can only eat three foods for a week. What are they?

I’m a freaking food blogger. There’s no way I could limit myself to three foods for a week. Three types maybe: vegetables, cheese, fruit, potatoes, eggs…oh crap, I’ve blown it already.

The last thing you Googled? 

Swass, which Urban Dictionary defines as “a non gender-specific term used to describe the sweat found in and around a person’s ass crack.” You’re welcome. 

Given your blog name, I have to ask: What’s your favorite recipe post and your favorite fitness post and why?

Stuffed Artichoke Soup with Brown Rice & Asiago in part because it’s the bomb diggety, but really because I talk an awful lot about flatulence. To give you a little perspective, my opening sentence is “I ingest enough fiber on a weekly basis to keep a small horse in the bathroom for days.”   

 Vanilla Gorilla also known as the time my itty-bitty ass did a Tough Mudder. This post is the perfect combination of brute physical strength and raw mental determination, coupled with a side of story telling. I also inadvertently mooned the crowd, so there’s that.

What has been your most memorable recipe disaster?

Oh wow, where to begin, there’s been so many. I made homemade ravioli which resembled hockey pucks, zucchini fritters that tasted like blobs of flour, egg rolls that went right into the trash and brownies my brother’s dog wouldn’t touch, and he licks his own ass.  

(Editor’s note: She means the dog, not her brother. I think.)

What question do you wish I had asked you and what would be your reply?

You probably should have asked, “Why are you incapable of following instructions?” To which I would respond, “That’s a great question.”  

There you go! Whether you want to find a workout, a recipe, a laugh or a cute cat picture, I suggest you go visit her blog and Facebook page and show her some love.

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P.S. Facebook has changed it’s reach AGAIN and only 5-10 percent of people are seeing my updates. To ensure you’re not missing a thing, add my Facebook page to your “Interests” lists, subscribe to my blog or follow me on Twitter.

A Serenity Prayer for the Grocery Store

serenityprayer

As I walk through the automatic door, I will be calm and choose a grocery cart that will sufficiently carry my goods—not the small one that some other people jam to the brim on both levels because choosing a larger cart seemed too cumbersome.

I will gently wipe the handle with the provided disinfecting wipe, place it in the trash can and not on the floor with the others and proceed to the produce section.

Hmm…the wheel is wonky and OH MY GOD I JUST VEERED INTO A DISPLAY OF TRISCUITS AND EVERYONE IS LOOKING!

Deep breath.

Accept that they’re Triscuits and most likely already dry, smashed wheat in the box and remember it could have been worse, like glass jars or pop. I will courageously continue my journey, taking more time to pick out a head of broccoli and asparagus than I took to pick out my shirt, and then proceed to the rest of the store.

Great. This idiot is barreling down the middle of the aisle like a linebacker and refuses to obey the conventional commandments of a civilized grocery society. But some people never learn, and while I’m not above throwing a shoulder or putting my best foot forward to trip him, instead I will move to the side.

Karma doesn’t have an expiration date, my friend.

However, this container of hummus in my cart does and every second that I’m stuck behind this woman examining cans of soup like they’re a treasure map is a second that I’m nearing the date on my hummus. I’ll just swerve around and…of course. The other side is blocked by an employee with a cart full of boxes that he needs to stock.

Breathe in. Breathe out. Everything in good time, and by “everything,” of course I mean hummus.

My cart sufficiently filled with items that I can remember from the list I left at home on the counter-minus the three things they didn’t have in stock even though they’re on sale-I will make my way to one of the two open checkout lanes and hope I can break my streak of picking the one with the latest cashier-in-training.

Look at that! I’m second in line…behind a woman with 42 cans of cat food that need to be individually rung up and a variety of Lean Cuisine meals, all defrosting and blocking the UPC code to be scanned.  

That’s okay. No big deal.

I’ll distract myself with the magazines conveniently placed in the lane so I can flip through and not actually buy them. Let’s see: How to lose weight and gain friends, how to make recipes that will help you lose weight and gain friends, what celebrities have lost weight and gained friends. Oh yes, and Reader’s Digest.

Just breathe and don’t allow the incessant beeping of the 42 cans of cat food being scanned sear my brain and instead look to the other side of the lane—batteries, dog treats, lip balm and aspirin.

I think I might need that last one, because seriously? This woman is now debating two expired coupons and I’m about to just give her the 50 cents she would have saved in order to move this along. And is that…a checkbook? Now she’s going to write up a check?

Deep breath.

See? Now your groceries are being rung up and bagged and the light is at the end of the tunnel. Swipe the card, thank the cashier, grab the receipt and all 300 extra pieces of paper that get pumped out of the printer with it and head for the doors. Just steer your cart toward the car and…where the hell did I park?  

SERENITY NOW!

Well. at least there’s hummus.

For that, I’ll give an “amen.”

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P.S. Facebook has changed it’s reach AGAIN and only 5-10 percent of people are seeing my updates. To ensure you’re not missing a thing, add my Facebook page to your “Interests” lists, subscribe to my blog or follow me on Twitter.

Must-See Movies for Winter…Kind Of

Back in September I introduced you to eight “new” movies that I felt you should be watching that fall. (I hear “It’s the Great Pumpkin Spice Latte, Charlie Brown,” was a big hit among the 18-34 crowd.)

Well, now that we’re well into a bitter cold winter, it’s time once again to remember that among the new releases with attractive people doing unrealistic things in situations that are resolved in two hours topping the charts, there are some other films being shown this winter that if given a chance, I’m sure would be a great hit.

Unbroken 2

No, this isn’t the epic tale of the Olympic track star who survived a plane crash in World War II, only to fight for his life against nature and eventually as a prisoner of war. 

This film instead follows a woman who unknowingly keeps several impressive streaks unbroken as she goes through her everyday life, such as picking out the grocery cart with the wonky wheel that will inevitably veer into a display of Triscuits, having the keys in the opposite pocket of the hand she has free and spilling something on the white shirt she attempted to wear.

streak

Will she eventually pick out a functional cart? Hit all the green lights while driving home with a full bladder? Join her for her epic adventures and see how she deals with adversity.

Why Waldo?

In this philosophical film, “Waldo” battles his social anxiety disorder and tries to find a reason for his existence.

In search of this answer, he makes public appearances, but only discreetly surfaces in large crowds of people and insists on wearing the same clothes each day—thick, black-framed glasses, red and white striped shirt, red and white cap. Eventually he becomes paranoid that people are constantly looking for him and wonders, “Why am I here? Why are they here? Why does low-fat peanut butter exist?”

The Belle Jar

In this dark Plath-meets-Disney film, Belle, a girl who is dissatisfied with life in a small provincial French town, becomes mentally unstable and develops delusional tendencies and troubling urges towards bestiality after her father is imprisoned.

Some of her best friends are household appliances that spend a majority of their time singing and dancing, and she is faced with the internal struggle of if she should marry and live a conventional domestic life or attempt to satisfy her ambition with a man under a spell because he couldn’t love.

Will she regain a tenuous grasp on sanity or will the “Belle” jar of her madness descend again at any time?

The Hundred Food Journey

While “The Hundred Foot Journey,” showcased the family of a talented cook who has a life filled with both culinary delights and profound loss, this tale is about a mediocre cook who has a life filled with hundreds of foods to help cope with her own journey of loss.

In order to procure said culinary delights, she must brave the grocery store multiple times a week, perfect her “serious” face when trying to sneak an expired coupon past the cashier and avoid the checkout line with the customer who insists on using every single square inch of personal space past the plastic divider, creeping up closer to her with their cart and sighing so heavily at the apparent lack of cashier expediency that it blows her coupons off the checkout stand.

After checking out, will she make the journey home without bruising her bananas? It’s a culinary “Choose Your Own Adventure” for the whole family.

Mild

In the sequel to “Wild,” in which Cheryl Strayed hiked the 1,100-mile Pacific Crest Trail by herself in an effort to recover from a recent life crisis, a 33-year-old unemployed writer trying to recover from her own life crisis faces a series of her own challenges.

While Strayed dealt with creating fire for meals and wild animals popping out unexpectedly, our protagonist risks life and limb to reignite the pilot light on her stove, the expected yet jolting release of the toast from the toaster, accidentally hitting the switch for the garbage disposal instead of the light and getting stuck in the neck of her sweatshirt.

 This inspiring tale proves we all have our own battles to fight.

Gone Girl

This is just me walking away really quickly any time someone calls my name out in public. It’s going straight to DVD.

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Let’s Set Lofty Goals!

The New Year is quickly approaching, which means we’ll soon be subjected to hearing about everyone’s lofty goals for the upcoming year.

I’m not a big fan of New Year’s resolutions, mostly because I figure I don’t need to wait until January 1 to try and change whatever it is that needs changing—unless it’s the furnace filter, in which I stick to a stringent “every three months” schedule.

But in the spirit of self-improvement and goal-setting, I have decided to share a few of my more “reasonable” resolutions for the upcoming year with you guys. Of course, this is excluding the biggest most stressful goal—finding a job—but I can multi-task here (quickly adds that one to her resume.)

shampoo

Throw a plastic bottle into the recycling bag without it bouncing back up and out of the bin and onto the floor.  

Rip bananas off the bunch at the store without feeling like I’m ripping them away from their little banana family, and then returning home without having bruised the bananas.

Take off  my winter boots without also taking off my socks, and if accomplished, step out of my winter boots without stepping directly into a piece of snow that fell on the floor.

Catch the pasta in between al dente and overcooked, which is approximately .84 seconds.

Not only remember to take my reusable grocery bags to the store, but also remember to actually take them into the store before I’m standing in line.

After brushing off my snowy car, open the car door without snow still falling in on the seat somehow.

Put the laundry away the same day that it’s actually washed and dried.

Successfully switch from one phone call to the one on call waiting without hanging up on either of the calls.

Find the right lid to a Tupperware container in less than three attempts.

Alphabetize something without needing to sing the alphabet song in order to actually alphabetize something.

Catch something as it falls off the table without knocking something else off the table.

Open a plastic produce bag in under 10 seconds at the store.

Pump gas and stop on the exact dollar amount instead of spending an extra $10 trying to get it to stop on an even dollar amount.

Try to find the good in every situation. Wait, that was a typo. I meant “food.” Try to find the food in every situation.


I think that last one is most certainly one I can accomplish (said as she walks by the laundry basket full of clean clothes for the third time today.)

Your turn. What’s one “reasonable” goal for 2015, other than not reading about anyone’s goals for 2015? 

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P.S. Facebook has changed it’s reach AGAIN and only 5-10 percent of people are seeing my updates. To ensure you’re not missing a thing, add my Facebook page to your “Interests” lists, subscribe to my blog or follow me on Twitter.

Snackin’ Around the Christmas Tree

It’s been a while since I’ve serenaded vegan food in song or questionable rhymes, so I figured a seasonal selection of holiday hymns were in order. So fa-la-la and bon appetite!

songs

Oh Broccoli Tree

(Sung to O Christmas Tree)

Oh broccoli tree, Oh broccoli tree,

I steam you every dinner.

Oh broccoli tree, Oh broccoli tree,

To me you are a winner.

Not only green when summer’s here,

But also when it’s cold and drear.

Oh broccoli tree, Oh broccoli tree,

To me you are a winner.

Oh broccoli tree, Oh broccoli tree,

Such flavor do you bring me!

Oh broccoli tree, Oh broccoli tree,

Such pleasure do you bring me!

Each fresh floret,

Each diced up crown.

Completes a meal I want to down.

Oh broccoli tree, Oh broccoli tree,

To me you are a winner.

Pizza Pie Rocks

(Sung to “Jingle Bell Rock”)

Pizza pie, pizza pie, pizza pie rocks.

Pizza with cheese or the toppings you please.

Turn on the oven to preheat the fun,

Now the pizza love has begun.

Pizza pie, pizza pie, pizza pie rocks.

Pizza’s sublime at just any time.

Cooking and smelling the oregano there,

Wafting through the air.

What a bright time, it’s the right time,

To snack the night away.

Pizza pie time is a swell time,

To go eating and improve on your day.

Hurry-up, oven, come and pick up the pace.

I want to stuff my face.

Put on yoga pants and kick up my feet.Because pizza pie,

Because pizza pie,

Because pizza pie rocks.

Hummus Night

(Sung to “Silent Night”)

Hummus last night, hummus tonight.

You’re so smooth, and so light.

Round yon chickpeas and tahini paste,

Add some garlic for that perfect taste.

Eat it any way you please.

Eat it any way you please.

Hummus last night, hummus tonight.

Any time, is pure delight.

Eaten in salad or slathered on grains,

Pita or crackers or just spooned up plain.

Hummus, you do no wrong.

Hummus, you do no wrong.

Hummus last night, hummus tonight.

Taste buds quake, at the sight.

Glories stream from X above

Those who eat it know it tastes like love.

A snacking savior is born.

A snacking savoir is born.

Have Yourself a Perfect Avocado

(Sung to “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”)

Have yourself a perfect avocado,

That is ripe and right.

Not too dark,

but also not too hard and light.

Have yourself a perfect avocado,

Make a wrap or dips,

Smashed on bread,

or served along with healthy chips.

Here we are in the grocery store,

Choosing our new fruit and more.

Faithful foods that are dear to us

Will come home with us once more.

Through the years our tastes may change a little,

But I must avow.

An avocado is a food I’ll keep somehow.

So have yourself a perfect avocado now.

Snackin’ Around the Christmas Tree

(Sung to “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree”)

Snackin’ around the Christmas tree

At the Christmas party hop,

Tables of food that you can see,

And at which you have to stop.

Snackin’ around the Christmas tree,

Let the Christmas “spirits” ring,

We’ll have a glass of red and white,

And screw the caroling.

You will get a sentimental feeling when you hear,

Voices singing, “Let’s be merry!”

Look! There’s bread and cake with berries.

Snackin’ around the Christmas tree,

Have a happy holiday.

Everyone eating merrily,

In the true food lovers way!

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P.S. Facebook has changed it’s reach AGAIN and only 5-10 percent of people are seeing my updates. To ensure you’re not missing a thing, add my  Facebook page to your “Interests” lists, subscribe to my blog or follow me on Twitter.