Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Exotic Fruit Therapy

What do I do when I've had the worst day ever?!? EXOTIC FRUIT THERAPY!!! Thanks to a tip from my mom, I took advantage of 2/$5 papayas at the local Harris Teeter. What can make me happier than a papaya milkshake? Nothing. Papayas can make you forget all your worries and woes.
At the instant when your knife slices through to the inner chamber of the papaya, the colorful fruit lets out this whisper of an exhale, as if telling you the secret to its glossy black pearls.

In my Asian film class, kids tried to equate the experience of touching papaya seeds to something sexual when we were analyzing The Scent of Green Papaya. I think it's definitely something of a sensual phenomenon, exciting, exhilarating, but maybe not bordering on sexual. Look at the gorgeous color! That's the tip of the papaya.

A lot of chopping and peeling later, PAPAYA MILKSHAKE!

Monday, March 26, 2007

Tea Party #1

My St. Patrick's Day escapades ended with a sidetrip out to Replacements, Ltd, the giant warehouse of ugly and forgotten china located between me and St. Patrick's Day. You don't even know how hard it is to find PLAIN, WHITE china in that hole for retirees. Seriously, they do have a very wide selection of china patterns, more than I ever thought existed, but the selection also only appeals to the 55-70 age range, who have nothing better to do than to track down pieces of their wedding china broken by rogue grandchildren at holiday gatherings.

After looking over ALL the display items, I finally found 3 sets of demi-tasse and saucers that were JUST WHITE. They're the size of tea cups that Chinese people would use to have afternoon tea, and also perfect for after dinner coffee. I'm quite satisfied with the purchase, as it wouldn't have pleased me had I gotten big British high tea-sized teacups. I also wasn't about to spring for a different tea set for Chinese tea, British high tea, and coffee. When buying a tea set, I say go for what you know you'll use them for. With a neglected crappy teapot that I stole from my mom, a hot water heater (required for all Asian households) and an aluminum tube of jasmine tea from Red & Green Co. of San Francisco (wayyyy coooool....), we were ready to have a tea party. Actually, the only thing we were missing was speculos or madeleines. The best type of food to have with tea is some sort of crispy but sweet plainly flavored cookie, or tea sandwiches. It was too late to eat more sandwiches, so we had to make do with donut holes and scones bought from the grocery store.

Oh, and the exciting thing about these cups is, they're made in Israel! Whose teacups are made in Israel? I'm probably secretly supporting some sort of religious warfare. Go JEWS!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Never-Ending Taco Things

If you, like me, don't have enough time to cook every night of the week, I have a quick and simple solution for you. Never-Ending taco things! All it is is canned corn (I prefer niblets), chopped tomatoes, canned refried beans, some chicken sauteed with a little bit of green pepper, and some cheese from a bag. Minimal cooking - all you have to cook is the chicken and green pepper. Store each ingredient separately in mini plastic containers, and when you're hungry throughout the week, you have a quick snack. I like to spread the beans and a scoop-full of chicken on the tortilla, microwave it, and then add the rest of the stuff. The best thing about them: you can add as much corn as you want! I love corn!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Avocado Chicken Omelette

Is it a sin to eat chicken with eggs? If it is, it should be SINfully good! I had one chicken breast left over from making spaghetti sauce and half an avocado from making tomato and avocado sandwiches, so I decided to investigate. To me, avocado has always been great with eggs, and everything tastes like chicken anyways, right? The result is an avocado chicken omelette:

The stuff on the side are my poor attempt to recreate the hash browns from Mary's. Not the same, but not bad - just extremely spicy due to my generous hand when attached to spice bottles.

Blueberry English Muffin

Brunch is my favorite! I started being a regular at Mary's of Course during the spring semester of my junior year in college. I spent every Sunday after church engaging in intellectually stimulating conversation, admiring the cheek beards of Cheekbeards (Brian Doub, bassist of The Finks), and sampling the down-home yet inventive brunch selections that Mary had to offer. Most of Marys' waitstaff are local musicians or artists, and the dining room is at the same time an art gallery and a display case for all of Mary's kitsch collectibles: Hello Kitty beef jerky, Dolly Parton dolls, and Tammy Faye vinyl records being the highlights.

Last summer I really craved blueberries, and returned to Mary's to see if luck was with me. In fact, they did have a blueberry breakfast item that morning - pancakes or waffles or something of the like. Unfortunately for me, by the time we got there they were down to a tiny ramekin of blueberry sauce left. Cheekbeards, being the adorable man that he is, brought me the last bit of it, with some special cream, and as a compromise I spread it on my english muffin, instead of getting the pancakes.
It was horrendously messy to eat, staining my fingers with blueberry juice with each bite I took.

I can't wait until summer and blueberry season!

Monday, March 19, 2007

I'm Passionate About Brunch

I can't say that I'm very passionate about anything but food, but considering I haven't been eating much lately, the only thing I'm passionate about is brunch.

My Brunch Manifesto:
-Brunch is something that you do in the city where you live, as opposed to something you do while traveling (though not mutually exclusive).
-Brunch should be consumed at a place where you're comfortable enough to show up with greasy hair from Saturday's partying.
-Brunch should always take more than an hour(preferably more than 2 hours), and breakfast dessert is always encouraged. For the more sophisticated and hardened alcoholics, depending on how trashed you were the night before, brunch sometimes includes a mimosa (not trashed at all) or a bloody mary (very trashed indeed).

Liev Schreiber (Kate and Leopold) and Naomi Watts (King Kong, Mulholland Dr.) enjoy my favorite brunch spot in Soho, Cafe Habana
via Popsugar

Justin Timberlake and Cameron Diaz (no longer an item) like their brunch from Cafe Habana too:
(Note: The corn on the cob you see under the shock of curly blond hair is one of Cafe Habana's specialties.)
via A Socialite's Life

My brunch-mates, a different set of J and Cameron, waiting beside the characteristic metal siding. (There's always a wait at Cafe Habana, but the food is worth the wait.)

Huevos Rancheros from Cafe Habana:

Sunday, March 11, 2007


Being disappointed in life makes me want to bake. I still don't have an appetite, but at least I have cupcakes to show for it. I want to start making cupcakes with hairstyle frosting. Next time I'll get more decorating supplies.

OOOOoooo red velvet! The "red" part of red velvet comes from either food coloring, or, in the old days, mixing vineagre with buttermilk and cocoa to turn the cocoa into a dark reddish brown color.
Red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese icing.
The classic way of icing in my book - slicked back.
The "Tintin" curly-Q
UPDATE, 3-13-07: Django ate it
The faux-hawk (if it were a real mohawk, there wouldn't be icing on either side of the 'hawk)