Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Snacks’ Category

Check this out: 

 

Can you see it? Well, I’m no screenshot expert. It’s the nutrition information for the Baskin Robbins Heath Shake. Wait, here’s a close-up:

 

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

..

..

.

Much better! So, I am totally baffled as to how a milkshake could possibly have 108 grams of fat, 64 grams of saturated fat, and 2310 calories. 1580 grams of sodium? I mean, what did they put in it? Milkshakes shouldn’t have 65% of your daily recommended amount of sodium. And even straight-up fat doesn’t have that much fat in it!

There’s a lot of talk about personal responsibility and freedom of choice when it comes to obesity and related health issues. Food companies and their cronies are fond of saying that they’re just providing options for people and that if people choose to consume unhealthy foods, it’s out of the producers’ hands. I think that’s true to a certain extent, but the existence of “foods” like this is just beyond the pale. Who would ever even think that a milkshake could contain 320% of the daily recommended amount of saturated fat? Why do food companies carry so little responsibility for the health of their customers that they can even get away with producing something like this? This milkshake (to use the term loosely) has 77 ingredients in it! That’s insane.

The trickery is that, while these huge food corporations talk about personal responsibility and freedom of choice out of one side of their mouths, the fact is that they rely completely upon the ignorance of their customers in order to sell their products. If they need people to not know what is really in their food, or what the ingredients or nutrition information mean, then the arguments about responsibility and choice are meaningless.

This just makes me never want to eat in a restaurant again. I mean, what the hell?

Read Full Post »

So, the rows aren’t exactly straight, but look- peas! I planted sugar snap peas and shell peas, so I should have a nice variety in a few short weeks. I can’t wait for sugar snaps right off the plant, and last year the shell peas I’d frozen were a highlight of my winter. So, these little plants are super-exciting. Look at them go!

 

Read Full Post »

In honor of Bike Commute Week, I made some extra-special cookies for my office. The thing that made them extra-special was the guilt they were designed to strike into the heart of everyone who had driven to work that day. Hahaha! Just kidding! I would never, ever be that arrogant.

Ok, so can you see the spokes? And the chains? Yeah, they’re ridiculously charming. Here’s the recipe, which is just a basic sugar cookie recipe that I undoubtedly stole from someone else:

Cream together:
3/4 c shortening
1 c granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla

Combine:
2.25 c flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

Stir flour mixture into sugar mixture. Chill one hour, roll ’em out, and then bake on ungreased sheets for 8-10 mins at 375 degrees. Let cool and then transfer to a rack. When they’re completely cool, you can decorate them.

Frosting recipe:
1/2 c shortening (or use half butter)
2 c powdered sugar
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla
1.5 oz cream
food coloring

For the record, I tried to make a little stencil in the shape of a whole bicycle, but that didn’t go too well. They do make cookie cutters in the shape of bicycles, but I didn’t have one, so I figured I could cut a bike shape out of cardboard and just cut each cookie around that. Well, I was mistaken. The dough did not hold together at all. So I went with just the wheel, because those are conveniently cookie-shaped.

Read Full Post »

Today I decided to try my hand at vegan cream cheese with an almond base. My friend Alisa offered me some of this once, on a long car trip, and I had to decline because the oils were separating in an unappetizing fashion, but the idea stuck with me (I’m a sucker for dips, spreads, and sauces made from nuts, like the “pine nut cream” from Veganomicon. Yum!). I purchased sliced, blanched almonds from the Middle East Bakery on Foster street, because I had a vague sense that blanched almonds were needed here. The Middle East Bakery is an amazing, magical place where you can get, say, bulgur, red lentils, black wild rice, jasmine rice, brown jasmine rice, tomato paste, dried apricots, a delicious spicy snack mix, and whole coriander seeds – that’s what we got there today. (Whole coriander seeds are important for when Isa tells you to crush them by hand. We like to do what Isa says). The Middle East Bakery also has to-die-for spicy hummus (Erin tries to recreate it with red chile paste, but it doesn’t compare), fresh dates, bulk spices, and basically all that is wonderful and good in this world. Here’s a photo of our Tower of Bulk Spices:

………………………………………………………………………………….

The almond dip turned out to not be very much like cream cheese, but that is totally cool with me because cream cheese is, imo, kinda slimy and gross. So I’m renaming it Salty Delicious Almond Dip, and here is the recipe:

1 cup of blanched almonds

about 1 tablespoon olive oil

half cup water

juice of one lemon

way too much salt.

Put it all in the food processor and pulse / blend, adding water and olive oil as needed, until the Vortex of Death happens (you know, when the food gets pulled down into a whirlpool of blendy-ness and you can tell that the lemon juice and salt is becoming fully incorporated).

I accidentally added too much salt, but it’s actually pretty yummy. You could skip the salt and add more lemon juice or (this is what I’m going to try next time) a little white vinegar. Erin and I ate this Salty Delicious Almond Dip with triskets as we made some beer today, and it was definitely a winner.

Read Full Post »

    Erin and I started the homebrewing adventure a few weeks ago. Well, Erin does most of the work, but I express genuine curiosity, and I totally helped with bottling our first batch. Our labels are going to be the bomb, but we haven’t really perfected them yet. Let’s just say for now that our love of scrabble and amber ale come together in a creative, adhesive-backed masterpiece. The photo above is of the malt and hops getting all foamy, and then we stirred the yeast in (below), and let it ferment for a few days.

       When the “wort” was fermenting, there were little bubbles in this airlock thingy on top of the fermenter, and we took to calling the operation “Mr. Bubbles.” This was an improvement, because prior to that Erin had been calling it “our baby.” As in, “how’s our baby doing today?” said in a tone of tender, parental concern. I think Mr. Bubbles is slightly less personal. More professional, if you will. Mr. Bubbles #1 is turning out fine, I think. We bottled him two weekends ago, and also added more sugar for the yeast to eat, and so far none of the bottles have exploded. In 2 weeks we get to drink it, which is very exciting. I hope that it is delicious and wonderful, and not funky and full of sediment. We’ll see. Right now Erin is making a batch that is supposed to taste like Bell’s Oberon (the ingredient kit is called “Ober Easy.” Clever, eh?). This is also very exciting. Later I’ll post photos of Mr. Bubbles #2 in all his fermenting glory, so y’all can wait with bated breath (and by “y’all” I mean Claire).

                                                           

Read Full Post »

The Great Escape, hog-style

 hog

Here’s a kind of funny, kind of tragic story about this 900-lb hog, known for its past escape attempts, making a break for it on the way to the slaughterhouse. This is the exact same story as The Great Escape. So… spoiler alert, I guess, although I hate it when people get pissed because you gave away the ending of a 30-year-old movie.

Read Full Post »

I love your earthy, sweet, satisfying flavor; your ostentatious greens that stand tall and proud like a peacock’s feathers; your texture when cooked – heavy yet smooth; the sultry red juices that stain my fingers, dish towels, counter tops and table runners; the way your skin slips off easily in my fingers after an hour in the oven, when I run you under cold water and the tough outer layer opens like a little beet jacket, revealing the tender red flesh beneath.(Dan Savage would say that it’s wrong wrong wrong, this girl-beet love, because beets are incapable of giving consent. But Dan Savage is an idiot).

I just finished an early dinner of four small beets. I had planned to simply cook the beets and stow them in the fridge for tomorrow, but once they were sitting on the plate in front of me, peeled and cooked, I just couldn’t resist slicing them, and once they were sliced, well, they just seemed so inviting and warm and delicious – I couldn’t help myself. I’m going a little beet-crazy.
Last night I made orange-glazed beets as part of an extremely labor-intensive dinner that included kale with tahini sauce, asparagus + spinach dip, curried carrot sunflower seed dip, and a vegetable tagine. I love beets on their own – I wrap them in foil, stick them in the oven (400 degrees) for an hour, and then sexily undress them as described above. But my love for beets knows no boundaries, and so I thought dressing them up with a bit of orange glaze sounded like a great idea. The process was kind of messy and probably unnecessarily involved, but that kind of added to the fun. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »