56. Sukiyaki

56. Sukiyaki

Hold on a second. Haven’t we seen this card before?

Um. yeah we have!

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That was a little bit of Deja Vu, amiright?

Speaking of Deja Vu, have you ever been on a Deja Date?

I have. Back in early March.

OK, here’s the deal–since I got the future phone I signed up for Tinder, which is basically Grindr for straight folks. I ended up exchanging messages back and forth with a guy named Orson. So after a couple of days of exchanges:

Are you from Pittsburgh?

Yep.

This is going to sound odd, but do you have a blog?

Yeah, I do.

I think we’ve gone out before.

Huh?

Yeah, true story: we did. Through OKCupid. Almost 2 years ago.

Sukiyaki recipeI asked him, did we have fun? He said that he did. I then asked why we didn’t go out again and he said that it was because of scheduling and that I didn’t seem too into him.

Our initial date was apparently so un-noteworthy that I completely forgot about it. But I then considered that may be a good thing because typically the only reason my dates are memorable is if they are absolutely horrible.

So Orson asked me out again. And I accepted. It was painless the first time, so I thought I’d give it another shot. I’m trying to be very positive (don’t I say that every year?); maybe I was too quick to judge after Date One.

On Date Two we met in Fells Point at a little joint called Rye. And like all new-ish establishments in Baltimore, it’s all craft cocktails and old-timey Prohibition-themed. I showed up a little late because I was trying out that Uber car service (like I was going to drive down and park in Fells!) and the bar was in a different block than I thought (I inverted my numbers). Whoops!

I arrived and Orson was already there, drink in hand. I don’t know if he had already had a few or was flat-out stoned, but he was glassy-eyed and a little slurry. Conversation was like pulling teeth, but since I traveled all the way down there, I decided to make the most of it. I ordered a Manhattan and it was good. Since Orson wasn’t talking, it was kind of like I was doing stand-up. Not the worst thing in the world–let’s face it, I don’t mind hearing myself talk. Then I ordered a Sloe Gin Fizz. I’ve made a Golden Fizz and a Silver Fizz but this was far superior. Delicious–raw egg and all.

The date thus far wasn’t ideal, but it wasn’t horrible. At least I had a nice drink in front of me. Honestly, I was rather bored, but after two strong drinks, I didn’t much care; but after two strong drinks, it was a good idea to get something to eat as well. Sadly, the little taco joints were already closed, and Orson didn’t seem to keen on the menu at Rye, so we walked up Thames a bit to another restaurant featuring 1/2 off Burger Night. Score!

Or so I thought.

Well this date went from bored to worse in 60 seconds. We sat at the bar and ordered burgers. After that we really had nothing to talk about. We sat in silence watching the NCAA Tournament. I started chatting up the guy next to me who was really into the game. I mean, I wasn’t getting anything out of Orson so why not commiserate with the other bar-goers?

The burgers arrived. My burger was shitty.

The topic, like it often does in Baltimore, turns to the Ravens.

Orson: So, are you going to become a Ravens fan now that you’re in Baltimore?

Me: Hell, no!

Well, what if the Ravens win twenty Super Bowls and the Steelers are last place every year?

No, dude. I’m from Pittsburgh.

What if they don’t have a team anymore?

Oh, you mean like how the Browns moved because of Art Modell and became the Ravens? Like how that Lombardi actually belongs to Cleveland? CHECK PLEASE!

I already had the card out. I didn’t look at the bill, I just gave the Visa to the bartender.

Yeah, my treat, dude.

I needed to get out of there. I needed to leave Fells Point. Don’t talk smack about my Steelers. I’m no bandwagon fan. Good or bad, for better or for worse, in sickness and in health, I got black and gold in my blood. I’m never gonna flip allegiance just because of titles and records.

I was livid.

Fuck that shit. Fuck you, Orson. In the immortal words of Nicolas Cage in Valley Girl: Fuck off. For sure. Like totally!

The only way he could have offended me more is if he started spewing racial slurs and trying to convince me that Elvis isn’t the greatest performer of all time.

So I was a little bit angry. And you know what’s a good way to take out aggression?

Ram!

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Hot Cross Buns

What the hell is with those lyrics? How about: who cares of you have kids? Just buy yourself a bun? Well, at least that’s what I’d be thinking. And why do the girls get first dibs on the buns? Hm. Questions that will never be answered.

Anyway, Good Friday is Hot Cross Bun Day. I know that we had these growing up at least once or twice (store-bought, of course) but this kind of dough with the raisins and the icing I associate more with New Year’s Pretzel. NOTE TO SELF: THIS YEAR MAKE NEW YEAR’S PRETZEL.

Anyway, I was first inspired by this card from the Marguerite Patten recipe card set:

Hot Cross Buns

Hot Cross Buns Recipe But I looked at the recipe and was all, huh? what? I thought that the crosses were made with icing, not pie crust. PIE CRUST? Ugh. The last thing I needed to do was have to make an additional dough.

So although I initially had that card on the brain, the recipe I used was from the Better Homes & Gardens Bread Cook Book (1968 edition).039041044 I already had everything on hand with the exception of milk and eggs. I had yeast (although the packets were from last year) and I had golden raisins. Like the Safeway would carry currants. HA!

So let’s get baking! Continue reading

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113. Ways With Bread

Ways With BreadI’ve been looking forward to this card because of its daffy photography. I love the massive bread knife and the sandwich made of sandwiches. Sadly, I did not make the sandwich filled with smaller sandwiches, for there are so few occasions that call for such a thing. And I don’t know exactly what those egg things are because they aren’t even mentioned on the other side of #113. But I am so glad that Dinner is Served! had taught me that buttering the bread before adding sandwich filling prevents the sandwiches from becoming soggy.

the more you know

I’m sorry that I really haven’t been blogging as of late. So what’s new with me? Very busy at work. And my brother’s wedding is coming up soon, so I’ve been going to the gym a lot. And speaking of the gym…

Ugh. I’ve been going to the gym regularly for almost a year now. I’m not tearing it up with the weights or aiming for a marathon,  but going from completely activity-free to at least 2 times a week is a big accomplishment for me. So I was feeling really good about myself and thought that I was doing really well; but then I switched gyms and did the fitness assessment and they told me that I have gained 5 pounds and went UP 3% in body fat. And I added inches on my waist. WTF? I thought I was doing so good with my New Year’s Resolutions!

Hm. Well, maybe that’s the problem. I’ve been cooking (and then eating) like a madwoman. I am sacrificing my body for this blog, people! But I am going to finish the cards this year, goddamnit!

You know how I once compared my life to a very, very low-rent version of Sex and the City? Well, that’s still true because there is still me. And there is still the city. But that other thing? Nada. Maybe if I knew that there was the possibility of someone seeing me naked, I would be more apt to not do things like eat lemon meringue pie in bed while watching episodes of Absolutely Fabulous with Brian.  Yes, that’s the only thing going on in my bed.

Now, in my defense, my potential suitors haven’t been knocking my socks off. And I’m not going to just do it to do it. Ya know? In times like these I look to the wisdom of Cher Horowitz:

prude

clueless-cher-picky-about-shoes1

But in all seriousness, I know that if I ever want to be in a situation again where there is the possibility of being naked, I’ve gotta start with a body that someone else would want to be naked with. So, from here on out:

thin

Well, eating a challah bread full of creamed seafood ain’t gonna help that body. But I digress.

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April 11 is National Cheese Fondue Day!

Although it first became popular in the US during the mid 1960s, few foods evoke the Avocado and Golden Harvest-hued era of the 1970s like fondue. I think that they might have been automatically issued to couples as soon as they got engaged. Doesn’t it seem like everyone’s parents had a set at one time? Like anyone in their 60s can say: I got a fondue pot at my wedding.  Never used it. I wonder what happened to it?

I imagine that there is a section of the Staten Island Dump dedicated to unwanted fondue pots.

But I LOVE fondue and I love f0ndue photos from the old cookbooks–everyone is happy and wearing sweaters, and the food is beautifully arranged and not at all messy and dripped all over the table and no one is suffering from second-degree hot oil burns or nursing a wound from a fondue fork that got stabby.

It’s getting dicey here–goldenrod sweater is going for the brown fondue while floral-print lady is going for the white. They’re crossing the streams!

A Swiss chalet! Sweaters! Skiing! Beer! And bread dipped in the blood of a virgin. Or a jar of Ragu.  Delightful!

“This set is for meat,” says Roger to himself. “Who knew that you needed one pot for cheese and another specifically for meat?” But while Roger is thinking about what could possibly be different between the two, it looks like Maude is getting an idea of where to stick that fondue fork—in his eye!

Mazola Margarine is what makes this Fondue party special! Or the fact that Mitch in the spiffy jacket is sleeping with both his wife Carol and his girlfriend Elaine. Keep those hands where I can see them, Mitch!

madmen fondue

And speaking of cheating spouses–chocolate fondue was a big hit at the Draper’s New Year’s Eve party.

And since I’ve mentioned Mad Men–who is stoked for Sunday night?!?! I need to find a recap somewhere so I can remember where we left off. What is going to happen to Don now?

Fondue Cook BookBut that is neither here nor there. If you want to see my foray into fondue from back in November 2012, click on the cookbook to the right! It was yummy.

Also, sorry for being AWOL this week–I’ve been ultra-busy at work and my calendar has been filled with social stuff and the gym (I’m upping my work-out schedule since my brother’s wedding is fast approaching and I want to look good in the photos).

I hope to have some good stuff for you next week. I have three DiS! meals waiting in the wings–I just have to write about them!

Everyone have a wonderful weekend. Enjoy the weather!

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Friday Flashback

Back in July of last year I shared with you 15. Pork Chops Florentine and the story of the Best Worst Date Ever (or was it the Worst Best Date Ever?). One of the most notable details of the date was the guy’s car—a Jaguar convertible with an iridescent paint job. A purple iridescent paint job, at that! I used the following picture so every one could kinda imagine what this thing looked like:

I am almost sold on this on a VW Beetle...if you're a 17 year old girl.

Snazzy, eh?

But a lot of you refused to believe that this car–this purple, iridescent, convertible Jaguar–existed on the streets of Baltimore. Some of you even thought that I just made it up for entertainment purposes. Which, dear friends, I never do. Let’s face it, I can’t make some of this shit up. And who could possibly come up with a purple, iridescent, convertible Jaguar???

But  anyhoo, here’s what I’m getting at–I was out with my friend Noah last night for happy hour at one of Baltimore’s more popular restaurants and guess what I found?

jaguar

Take that, non-believers! PEACE!

*drops mic*

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Happy PB&J Day!

Oh, what a wonderful day to be alive! Who doesn’t like a good peanut butter sandwich? Aside from those allergic to the peanut, of course.

I actually brought peanut butter and jelly into work today to make a PB&J for my breakfast. I’m celebrating in style! Here is today’s sandwich:

peanutbutter

Strawberry Polaner All-Fruit and Crunchy Jif! Jif is the best peanut butter, and if you don’t agree, you are a crazy person.

And of course, it wouldn’t be Peanut Butter and Jelly Day without RuPaul’s “Peanut Butter.” Must be jelly cuz jam don’t shake, indeed!

WARNING: video includes gratuitous footage of booty dropping and ass-shaking. As well as an earworm.

Twerk it, Ru!

P.S. if you’ve ever wondered what fantastical calendar it is that I use to know which National This or That Day it is, it’s FOODIMENTARY. It is a really cool website full of fun facts and food history. I highly recommend it.

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Bisquick Impossible Buttermilk Pie

Another Bisquick Impossible Pie! And this is the first time I went sweet and not savory.

impossible buttermilk

Courtesy of Click Americana

To refresh your memory, in addition to completing the Dinner is Served! cards this year, I also want to make all 12 Impossible Pies from The Bisquick “No Time to Cook” Recipe Book.  Taco, Lasagna, and Quesadilla have already been tackled; with this Buttermilk Pie, I’m already 1/3 of the way to my goal and I still have a lot of 2014 left.

Buttermilk Pie Ingredients

Only 6 ingredients!

I decided to bring this over to Rick and Ronny’s house one evening that they had me over for wine and lentil soup. I opted for this because I had all of the ingredients on hand. Well, except for one thing—buttermilk. Oh, you know, just the ingredient that gives the dish its fucking name. No big!

Well, actually it was no big! I consulted the following book, which I got for Christmas this year from my bro and my soon-to-be sister-in-law:

Help from Heloise

1981 edition

Well, that clever Heloise had a solution to my problem right there on page 82:

Help from Heloise

I had vinegar!

Who am I to question Heloise? Heloise is an American institution!

I don’t know how much of a difference real buttermilk would make in this pie, but I really didn’t care to find out because buttermilk is always pricey and only in the quart size and recipes always only call for a cup or two and the rest goes to waste. I hate waste. So thanks, Heloise for the tip!

Here is the pie pre-baked…

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Friday Flashback

If everyone else can have a Throwback Thursday, why can’t I have a Friday Flashback? 

Image

My teenaged mum in Atlantic City…?  circa 1960something
Ole!

I just love this frickin’ photo. I have it in my living room. I hope my mum isn’t mad that I shared it. 

Everyone have happy weekend! 

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84. Grilled Hamburgers (with Lima Bean and Cucumber Salad)

I bring you CARD NUMBER EIGHTY-FOUR!

Grilled HamburgersGrilled Hamburger Recipe

Ok, that’s a lie. Leah actually brought card number 84. She made the burgers and the assorted toppings and the lima-bean cucumber salad. I just made the dessert, but I’ll get to that later.

But since I just mentioned the assorted toppings, let me draw your attention to that weird bunch:

  1. Pineapple rings, green pepper, olives
  2. Sauteed onions and mushrooms
  3. Sliced orange and chutney
  4. Raw onion, ketchup, crisp bacon
  5. Slice tomato, crumbled blue cheese
  6. Mustard and cole slaw

Well, some weirder than others. 2, 4, and 5 seem completely reasonable; and that cole slaw and mustard combo didn’t sound like a total abomination since I come from Pittsburgh and we like to put cole slaw on our sammies!

However, since it’s DiS! Leah thought it appropriate to dabble in the odd and she did topping combo number 1 (hell yeah, pineapple rings, green pepper and olives!) in addition to the onion/mushroom and onion/ketchup/bacon burgers.

Now for the salad. Leah chose Greek yogurt over sour cream because that’s what she had in the house. And I don’t think that’s what went wrong here. I think the recipe was just plain wrong, because geez-oh-man was this salad gross:

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Posted in 1970s, Beef cuts, Dessert, Ground Beef, Recipes, Retro Food, Retro Recipes, Salad | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Happy National Ravioli Day!

ravygaly2

via Foodimentary

You know, every once in a while I just have a hankering for a can of Chef Boyardee Meat Ravioli. Or, ‘labbyloobies’ as my elementary school friend, Jessica, would call them. I have no idea why in the hell she called them that.

But whatever you call them, they are delicious. In that gross, school cafeteria lunch kind of way. Gimme some frozen Texas toast garlic bread and I’m a happy girl.

Here is DJ Tanner singing Chef Boyardee’s praises:

Donna Summer+ kids + canned pasta = ADVERTISING MAGIC.

Is it weird that I’ve never tried Beefaroni? All I can think of is Kramer and Beef-a-reeno.

So I’m not exactly running to the store for a can. Although that jingle is pretty damn catchy.

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