Saturday, December 8, 2007

Burnt Boxcar Brownie Sundae------UGH

Recap of Friday Night:

Mikes Place restaurant, Conway, AR......retirement dinner. After about a 30 minute drive in heavy traffic with said driver driving like a friggin maniac because he does not want to be late, well guess what??? I don't want to be dead. I am used to being late. I don't take issue with it. If others have a problem so be it. It is rude, yes but better than being DEAD.

Tea was quite nice
Crab bisque.........mucho delicioso but bordering on less than lukewarm
Salmon with citrus dijon sauce was out of this world, baked potato (loaded of course) and soggy vegetable medley
Grand Finale (drum roll puhleaze)....brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrum BURNT BOXCAR BROWNIE CAKE SUNDAE. Sad thing was they tried to cover up the burntness with LOADS of fudge sauce. Such a disappointment. So sad. Come home and eat a cinnamon roll. Boo Hoo.

Hopefully the "Heavy Whores of Yours" will surpass my wildest tastebud imagination tonight and make up for last night.

Funny side note: Blessing starts over the food..........agnostic friend says "What is this?? What is going on here???" Me being the not so practicing Catholic I am "Shhh it is the blessing, shut up and fold your hands, bow your head and close your eyes----sheesh we can't take you anywhere".

Friday, December 7, 2007

Heavy Hors d'œuvres, Awards and Merriment

It is no secret how much I love food. This past week and weekend were supposed to be some of the yummiest food soires of the holidays.

Tuesday night: Chamber of Commerce Event for Little Rock with light Hors d'œuvres and Broadway show "Hello Dolly". Mucho excitemento for me-o . I obsessively listened to the Hello Dolly Soundtrack or should I say "record" when I was a young tot. My grandmother had the record and I spent every Saturday dressing up in her nightgown, high heals and sipping ginger ale out of a wine glass deep in a Hello Dolly coma. Unfortunately, Tuesday=Sick Wussy Husband with flu so we had to cancel.

Thursday night: Bonding night out with Husband for late supper at Bruno's of Little Italy. House salad and Ravioli Ricotto ending with pistachio cannoli and zabaglione w/crunchy lady fingers.

Friday night (tonight): Retirement dinner for Shop Director at the ramp at Mike's Place in Conway. Looks like quite a yummy place and they have salmon with a citrus dijon sauce so you know what I am getting.

Saturday night: Union Pacific Christmas party at the Alletell Arena. Invitation stated "Heavy Hors d'oevres, Awards and Merriment". Those Hors d'oevres better be damn heavy because I planned on loading up my gullet and stuffing my purse. Nothing worse than leaving a party hungry. I better experience plenty of Merriment also or I will be complaining to said party planner.

Side note: Instead of Hors d'oeveres my husband and I through the years always call them "whores of yours" and then do a Beavis and Butthead laugh like 13 year old boys. It is impossible to resist. Ya gotta keep laughing or it is all over!!!!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Superficial Perhaps, Upsetting Nonetheless

For all of you out there that find it completely acceptable to burn candles that have the sweet smell of the sustinance we take in on a daily basis to survive, you are sooooooo wrong. Candles that fill the air with delectable smells of baked products are a cruel cruel cruel trick. I don't get them, I don't understand them, I don't want to. Why? Why? Why? Why? Who wants a jar of wax that smells like a sugar cookie???? or perhaps a brownie??? or an apple pie??? Who wants to walk in the house after a long day at work and smell fresh baked apple pie only to find out there is a jar of soy wax aflame on the kitchen counter and no frickin apple pie anywhere to be seen. What child wants to run home from school in the wintry outside, frost on his face and snow on his boots, to be greeted at the front door with the sweet smell of sugar cookies fresh out of the oven only to find out his wack job mom is burning a candle in the kitchen. A true foodie would never commit such a heinous crime as to purchase one of these candles.....they spit in the face of everything we stand for. A true food addict would regift this present as soon as it is humanly possible, not only because it is just wrong, but because it may be mistaken for a late night snack on a 1:00 am binge in the dark pantry. Sure in the grand scheme of life this is probably one of the most superficial topics that anyone could have an argument for but it in my world of food it is most upsetting.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

You say Tomatoe.....I say Tomato, You say Potatoe...... I say Potato, You say Grilled Cheeze........ I say Toasted Cheeze

It is really rather amusing how in different parts of our country, let alone the word, food or drink can be the same item yet called something totally different. Some people say To-may-toe and some say To-ma-toe or the Po-tay-toe vs. Po-ta-toe. Is it pop or is it soda??? Some people go as far as to call it all coke (yah, you know who you are California). Needless to say I have found myself in quite of a quandry here in the south. Like any normal children.....mine LOVE the cheese sandwhiches, not just any cheese sandwhiches, "TOASTED CHEEZE SANDWHICHES". Yes, I said, "TOASTED CHEEZE" if you please. I grew up on Toasted Cheeze. So of course when our family eats out at least one child orders a Toasted Cheeze. Or so we have tried. Doesn't everyone say Toasted Cheeze.

FLASHBACK: Loco Luna restaurant, Little Rock, AR 11/18/2007, night before my 19th wedding anniversary, Dana, myself, Ben, Max and Griffin proceed to sit down. I go to order from the menu and I order a "toasted cheeze"........waiter looks at me like I just had asked him for a kidney and with wide hollow eyes says "You want a what???", I say "Child's toasted cheeze". He starts fumbling through the menu and says "what is a toasted cheeze?", I then start to doubt myself (knowing we have order this item off the menu before) and start fumbling through the menu again pointing at said picture of a child's toasted cheeze. Waiter looks at me with disgust and says "Oh you mean a Grilled Cheese sandwhich".................DUH, isn't that what I said???? A toasted cheeze.

FLASHBACK: Dixie Cafe restaurant, Memphis, TN 11/27/07 5:30 pm, evening out with girls at the Pottery Barn/Williams Sonoma outlet (ooooooooh yes, I said outlet). Waitress comes over and again I proceed with a "child's toasted cheeze".......cocky woman with long southern drawl (kind of like Flo on Alice that says "kiss my grits") says we don't have toasted cheeze.........uh yes you do as I point to picture on child's menu. Waitress (with tip dwindling as we speak) says "oh you mean a grilled cheese"...........DUH ISN'T THAT WHAT I SAID??????

My so called "friends" at the table then proceed to laugh and look at me. I am quite irritated and say "WTF is the difference, grilled cheese or toasted cheeze" it is the same. The table says " oh yeah, we thought it was really odd when we first met you that you said toasted cheeze, but we have heard you say it for 5 years now so we now you mean grilled cheeze". Mind you they are from CA originally and have lived in the South for almost 20 years heheheheheh.

So is it really a "Grilled Cheese"??? Is Toasted Cheeze a northern saying or have my parents utterly failed me??? I don't grill my cheese........that would require me walking outside and placing my sandwhich on the bbq grill, which I know is a whole other topic as you eat bbq in the south but you grill on a bbq in the north......hence the reason "YOU TOAST YOUR CHEEZE" and not grill it. And just for the record..........SODA IS REALLY POP!

Monday, December 3, 2007

I'm Dreaming of a Green Christmas

I know that most people are "Dreaming of a White Christmas" or so the song goes. I on the other hand, am dreaming of a Green Christmas......A Big Green Egg Christmas. My newest cooking vehicle obsession is The Big Green Egg. Talk to the hand panini maker--you have been replaced. I know other women want diamonds or furs or perfume for Christmas, but I am not your normal high maintenance lass. So as I pathetically continue to drop hints in my husbands direction (which I am sure are falling on deaf ears). A medium egg will do me just fine.......I am not greedy, I don't need the large or extra large. Perhaps the planets will align and the gods will look kindly upon me and I will have a Green Christmas. I won't hold my breath.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

If Only I Could Have My Cake and Eat It Too

Isn't that how the saying goes "If I could only have my cake and eat it too" or "You always want what you can't have" perhaps "The grass is always greener on the other side". These sayings very much apply to my world of food.

I have lived in 8 different locations over the last 16 years. There are many culinary items only indigenous or readily available in those particular areas. Yes, of course with the age of the internet and federal express and dry ice you can get most any item (for a cost) shipped to your home. Missing a local restaurant is a total other ball can't just have a ravioli dinner shipped to you, it is not the same.

I grew up in NW PA. I will never forget my first move to CA in 1992 and my first snack food shock. Back in PA about 45 minutes from where I grew up was a potato chip factory.....Troyer Farms. I grew up on Troyer Farm's chips. I thought everyone in the world ate Troyer Farms Chips, being the naive 21 year old I was. I enter the local Safeway in Monterey, CA ready to load up on a salty bag of potato bliss and there are NO Troyer Farms Chips. How could this be???? And so on and so forth the story begins:

I miss: Troyer Farms chips from NW PA, Valerios Restaurant in Erie, Pa (pepperoni balls and wedding soup), I mix Ox Roast from Greenburgs, I miss Rachels restaurant in Grove City (deep fried soft pretzels and bean soup), I miss Wegmans roast beef subs, I miss Carpino's restaurant in Apple Valley, CA (kudos to the rosemary focaccia, ravioli w/meat sauce, antipasto salad w/mortadela and the princess cake and cannolis), I miss the tamales at Marias in CA, I miss my CA Pizza kitchen (although it is a chain restaurant I have NEVER had a bad meal there), I miss my salmon sandwhich on focaccia bread w/bacon, onion and roasted red pepper at Upstream in Omaha. I could go on and on. I know most people refer back to their travels or prior places of residence with things they have seen and people they have met ,but this food obsessed blogger tracks her travels by all the wonderful foods I encounter and all the yummy places I have the priviledge of dining. I love that I have seen our wonderful country from one coast to the other and most places in between, I will remember a good meal before I will remember your name if our paths cross in the night.

It is a sad day when that craving strikes my taste buds (like a pregnant woman that can't get her ice cream and pickles) and I can't run down to CPK and get my favorite brick oven pizza. I am excited to start trying all the new local joints in Little Rock and finding a favorite to miss once we are transferred again. Loco Luna your cheese dip is amazing and Bruno's of Little Italy......OH MY GOSH YUM and I can't forget the Whole Hog ---they made me fall in love with BBQ all over. And I can't forget McAllisters Iced Tea.....our friends call it "crack", you definately can't go a day without it and who wants a wife w/the shakes, sweats and bitches???

I am grateful for this life I live and lead and for the wonderful family that I have. Food is truly a blessing and no one should go hungry at the end of the day.