Craving Cheeseburgers, Part 2: My Love Affair With Dessert

When we last spoke in “Craving All Cheeseburgers” my husband and I really DID go out for the delicious, juicy cheeseburger and I kept my promise (to you) to look at the dessert menu. Did you think I would disappointed you, my friends? Of course not.

On the dessert menu: Creme Brulé, Ice Cream, Sorbet, flourless chocolate cake (No other pastries) and a special Banana-Chocolate bread pudding. That definitely interested my husband, since he loves bananas and chocolate. I was trying to be nice, so I said I would share it with him. I had my doubts.

Big Mistake.

It tasted like the banana bread that I bake except much drier.  I

Monique's Banana & Raisin Cake

Monique’s Banana & Raisin Cake (Photo credit: Great British Chefs)

make banana bread several ways. Plain, with raisins. Plain with chocolate chips and lastly banana bread with both chocolate chips and raisins.

I’m a huge fan of raisins, so give me an oatmeal raisin cookie and I’m in heaven. I will eat chocolate chip cookies but I prefer oatmeal raisin, I might have to try to make them this week. I’m an oddball I know, I like molasses cookies and cinnamon cookies ginger cookies and vanilla cookies, that’s why my nickname, years ago, was “Vanilla Girl.” I like chocolate too as a pre-dessert, dark chocolate I consider medicinal in a heart healthy kind of way.

The bread pudding was too hard to resemble anything pudding like. It had the consistency of a very dry sponge.  My husband ate some of it and we

Description unavailable

Description unavailable (Photo credit: rob.knight)

brought the rest home which is still sitting in our over crowded refrigerator. I scrounged around our cabinet and came up with some cinnamon cookies and a (large) spoon of Nutella for my dessert. Not bad at all.

Tonight, I am looking forward to the Greek diner’s rice pudding that my mother lovingly bought me after we shared the best tuna sandwich in the world. There are only a few places that are known to us for tuna approved edibility.

Our main course tonight will probably be scrambled eggs and English muffins but as long as I am happy with my dessert nothing else matters. I have to put raisins in the rice pudding now, before I forget.

Rice pudding bowl

Rice pudding bowl (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I haven’t told anyone this but I just ordered home-baked molasses cookies on-line and I am waiting for them to arrive any day now. (They were expensive.)

My friend Judith really does eat dessert first when she is home, I need the anticipation. I have a Pre-D and then a  real-D. Same kind of concept mine just has a base of protein.

Tomato, TomAto.

PS Those were the best cookies I have EVER had. Worth every dollar. They also come in a “Snickerdoodle” variety which the company says is the Molasses cookies with raisins. Does anyone know? I looked up Snickerdoodles and there are many versions.

Please help.

That is going straight on my birthday list. I’m drooling.

Cookies? Check. Ice Cream? Check. Impulse Items? Check.

WELCOME HOME

 

I haven’t had the energy to go grocery shopping (something I hold near and dear to my heart) since early Spring. I’ve had all my illnesses flare up at the same time: Fibromyalgia, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, Syncopy, Fainting and Crashing, No Energy etc. For me? A tragic loss. For the supermarket? A major deficit. I’m not joking (as most of my readers will tell you) I LOVE FOOD, good food, strange food, NEW food and products. I will always look at every item on the shelves to see if I can spot any new items. I always can and I always buy them. I have no idea what the photo below is showing but that is a product I would definitely buy and eat, wouldn’t you?

Fastelavnsboller

Fastelavnsboller (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

 

 

 

 

My husband came along for this trip just to see if I could physically make it but once we were in the store I shot out with my carriage grinning wickedly. I don’t need a list nor do I want one. This is my home. I look at every item in every aisle and I know what I need, want or have to have for that week.

I knew it was a mistake NOT to go into marketing after I graduated college. I am the one to pick out the next new product, the new sensation, the new flavor, I’m a marketer’s taste test dream. Is it too late? I am at my prime, have your people twitter my people.

My mom says I have been like this since I’ve been five years old. I haven’t outgrown it and am proud to say my children, have inherited this hobby too. Even now, in their twenties, they love to go shopping with their mom.

For a while when I was younger (no, I’m not kidding) my then boyfriend, now husband, watched a show called Supermarket Sweep. We watched the original show every single night when it first came on. We toyed with the idea of getting married in a supermarket but somehow never went through with it; I regret that.

Stew Leonard’s is a great place to shop and fun too. I bet they would help if we could talk my (un) romantic husband into the idea. Right near the mooing cow! Don’t get me too excited, please.

Stew Leonard's

Stew Leonard’s (Photo credit: JeepersMedia)

Anyway, I bought: (New Product) lemon ice cream with mashed lemon cookies inside,huge, soft oatmeal raisin cookies (new brand) some new kind of skinny-ish popcorn for when you need something slightly salty but not fatty while you are watching a movie at home.

 

Also, I am now taking a new medication for my fainting spells, the fancy name is Syncopy also: Fibromyalgia, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, Narrow Angled Glaucoma, Eppiglottitis, IBS,  and others. I now have to have breakfast. I bought apple, blueberry and strawberry breakfast bars. This is the first time in all my life that I have eaten breakfast, my mom will be so pleased.

Usually, it’s just that steaming cup of coffee in my white Starbucks mug with half and half and one sweetener. I look forward to the smell and the first sip every single morning.

After that, I just go on with the boring details of my day. If I don’t feel the need to nap, I feel it is a personal triumph. Then our dinner conversation begins around 4pm. What shall we cook?  It doesn’t really matter, last night we had hot dogs, baked beans, and broccoli, the night before pizza but they are all precursors to the most important part of any meal: dessert. The lemon ice cream dessert:

Lemon

I dipped my spoon, my little spoon, into that new lemon ice cream, slowly, tasted a small bite, let it linger on my tongue and swallowed slowly, making sure I had a cookie bite with the ice cream. I was hoping for a dance sensation in my mouth or as my husband and I used to say “I hope it dances.” Did it? Oh yes. After half a cup of delicious lemon ice cream with bits of lemon cookies, I have found a new love. It’s so nice to be in love again, I feel tingly all over.

 

Indian Dinner, My Favorite American Snacks

 

Chamuças de Goa. Chamuças (samosas) from Goa.Last night, hubby and I, after treating ourselves to see the adorable movie, Chef, went out to a lovely Indian restaurant a few towns away from where we live.  It was a treat and we ordered Samosas (I always get these mixed up with Samoas, Girl Scout Cookies that my kids love.)  We ordered the Samosas three

different ways. One was potato with peas and lentils, one was spinach and the other was filled with lamb and spices. They were delicious and filling and frankly my stomach could have stopped there but what’s the fun in that?

We then ordered Shrimp Saag, shrimp in a bed of spinach ( I thought there was a little cream in there, my husband said absolutely not) and an amazing sweet dish of chicken in a yellow cream sauce made of honey, cashews and apples. The consistency was smooth so all the ingredients except for the chicken were blended, creamy and rich. We also ordered one portion of Nan which resembles pita bread if you ironed it to barely nothing. After all, what good is all that creamy, sweet sauce without the proper bread to dunk it in?

I drank a sweet Lassi ( a yogurt drink made with ice, rosewater, sweet syrup and blended) see the easy recipe below, and my husband had some alcoholic drink with figs, rum, bourbon and too many other ingredients. I took a sip hoping I would like the taste. I made my usual disgusted face that my family is so fond of seeing, gasped and reached for my water-glass to clear my palate of that nasty alcohol taste. Next time:I’m ordering a double lassi, on the rocks.

English: Fat-free lassi from Mumbai

We ate like four-year old children, having dinner at 5 o’ clock, (okay it was really 4:50pm) but that has never bothered us before so by the time we came home it was only 6:15 a time when most families are preparing dinner. Nope, not us. When we came

 *Easy Sweet Lassi

Ingredients:Servings:2-3Units: US | Metric
1 cup yoghurt
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup ice-cube
3 -5 teaspoons sugar
1 pinch salt
Put all ingredients in a blender until smooth.
Read more: food.com/easy recipe

home we had dessert (I deeply regretted not ordering the yogurt balls in honey…) so I had the gigantic molasses cookie I had purchased at the small grocery story in town. It was enough for  three people but I finished it with ease. Had too much sugar and no spice ( I expected ginger) but I’m not that fussy so I ate the entire thing.

Around 9 pm my husband and I roamed around the kitchen because at that point we were ready for a snack, I just needed SOMETHING.  I headed to one of my all-time favorite snack combinations and one of my dog Lexi’s favorite snacks too. A small packet of square pretzels, two slices of Kraft Individually Wrapped American cheese and a box of chocolate Yoo-Hoo to drink.

Now that, was a perfect snack. It is always the perfect snack for me and for my dog. I only gave her one pretzel and bite of cheese but she knows the sound of the pretzel bag and comes running when she first hears the bag rustle.

Yoo-hoo Chocolate DrinkBasically, you can take me out to a fancy dinner anywhere but when I come home, I retreat to the food I really love. My snack: pretzels, Kraft American cheese slices and Yoo-Hoo, my childhood drink of choice.  I went to bed, happy.

 

Dedicated to PK Sr.

F Is For Food, T Is For Tuna

When I have nothing else to do, I think about food. I always think about food. Some would say that its my downfall but others who know me well would say its my savior. I love food, all types and even though I used to be scared to try new foods I am getting so much better except for icky textural issues.

I will not eat raw oysters and slurp them down my throat. The mere thought of doing that makes me want to gag so no, I stick tight to being inflexible. I would say “Not for a million dollars” but to me, a million dollars is a lot of money so I could be bribed, potentially. Sushi, raw, same reaction, it’s the slippery texture that I can’t seem to get by though I have tasted it in tiny bits a few times. Not my style, at all. Chicken teriyaki and rice please, I am not ashamed.

raw oysters @ Sway

raw oysters @ Sway (Photo credit: dionhinchcliffe)

I am proud to say I do eat mild fish now which was a big leap of faith for me, I never ate any fish except tuna fish that came out of a can (which to me was totally unrelated to real tuna.)  Yes, I did have a real disconnect but it worked for all the years I didn’t put it together. Tuna and tuna were very different, one was for a sandwich with mayo and the other one was disgusting. I know, I know. I’m a little slow.

I know I am fussy and crazy but I have tuna-approved places like the diner in the next town where I regularly order it. It’s perfect, not too mushy, not chunky at all, the right amount of mayo. It is a tuna-approved lunch place. If it looks, smells or resembles dark cat food it is not for me. That is why I have

7dd_3176208-tuna-the-cat

7dd_3176208-tuna-the-cat (Photo credit: Wolfgang Lonien)

friends and family to order things first and I will taste it and decide later if it is okay to order next time. (Except for Sarah my bff who will not share her food, not even a bite but that’s okay.)

Another place in town sells “Spa Tuna” with apples and raisins and just a hint of mayo that is wonderful as well. I will not eat tuna in an unknown diner or restaurant, I stick with safe foods like scrambled eggs or a ham and cheese sandwich or soup. An adventurer I am not.

Beverages, to me, have to fit the food. For example: a tuna sandwich goes well with either a Diet Coke or Coke or hot chocolate. Period. Never would I drink orange juice or water with it, it needs the sweet balance. Likewise, I have to force myself to drink plain water to keep hydrated, so my kidneys don’t flop and fail on me instantaneously. I add lemon or lime juice to the water to pretend it isn’t water at all. Epic fail.

Growing up we never drank water. It was Hawaiian Punch or Lemonade or Grape Juice or other sweet beverages. But, water? Never. Luckily, my daughter drinks a lot of water but not my son. He also doesn’t drink enough water either but he does drink organic fruit juice which is better than nothing.

When you have no control over anything in your life you either lose control or you need to have control over something. For me, it’s food. In the beginning I wanted to lose weight and I did, I also kept it off. After that, I got into a major dessert phase where I needed a good, yummy dessert every single night.

Phish Food

Phish Food (Photo credit: Vanessa (EY))

I am trying to pull back from that now because I feel I am getting hooked ( HA HA I know I’m hooked) on sugar. So I am down-sizing my dessert (sigh) and will only have them intermittently. I will miss you jelly doughnuts, Ben and Jerry’s Phish Food, and Starbucks’ Iced Lemon Cake. Not to mention you my darling Orange Hostess Cupcakes…I have a whole blog post just about you!

I’m not making promises on how much I can deny myself dessert. I will try having less. I made banana bread yesterday with raisins, funny how that does not appeal to me at all. I will try, that’s all I’m saying…

 

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t minus 2

English: Rubber bands in different colors. Stu...

English: Rubber bands in different colors. Studio photo taken. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

thoughts are flying out of me so quickly i can’t even title them or remember what they are. all i know is that my stomach is one tight structure of steel, a steel ball of nerves and when i start back eating american cheese sandwiches you know i’m in bad shape and need a lot of comfort.  things have been spiraling out of control for months now, i can’t write, i cant sleep i can’t but sometimes i eat too much, comfort food, cocolate, yes, I am one of those people who have two stomachs, one for meals and the other for dessert. sweet comforting dessert. dessert like a religion. please bless me. bless my family, i’m not sure how long my stomach strands can take this endless stretching. i see them like rubber bands stretched until they pop until they swing back and hit me bring me down even lower than i was before. no more talks to myself, cheery thoughts now just paralyzed in emotional pain.

too many bad thoughts invade my space in and out, there have been good days that i have been proud of and horrible days like today when he made a joke which made me burst into tears, humor like that is not appreciated. and when “annie hall” tweedle dee tweedle dumb said i have no time for you but if someone cancels… no she is supposed to hear my voice even if its transference that’s ok. cancellation, relaxation. a daughter in a day, a son in four.

we’re soul mates she said matter-of fact, that is not the first time I have heard that it it was nice to hear it again, soothing. no traveling, no trip,  idunno, i dunno, job, start, maybe, maybe not.i need some answers to thees ongoing questions that keep coming up after another mystery is solved which opens up another scary category of medical ambiguity.

who thought it would be his heart? how can i not v isualize being there for my dad and mom and how dare she say she was there too, no, she was never there. no she was never ev er there for anyone but herself. what did elena say “wow,, shse really really hates herself.” that’s the only thing we agree on, apparently and she does not even know it.

spirits need to help me more but i need to find them first, name them, talk to them, reach out and i need to do the work for that when i am ready. t minus 2 why do i feel so alone? because i really truly am. my kids are still kids, its just a test, its just a test its just a test.

 

 

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A LOVE LETTER To Starbucks’ Iced Lemon Pound Cake

English: Starbucks, Cathedral Square, Peterbor...

English: Starbucks, Cathedral Square, Peterborough, UK. A typical sales area in a Starbucks coffeehouse. Showing the till, preparation areas and sales displays. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Dear Starbucks,

I love you. To pieces. Well, to pieces of iced lemon pound cake. On this I swear.

I read that Starbucks got rid of a few of its very popular items, but not for long; there were many customer complaints. One of the items they said good-bye to was one of my favorites, the iced lemon pound cake. Gone, Adios. Bye-bye. WHAT?

Yes, you heard me, it vanished from the clean see-through shelves of your local Starbucks’ establishment. Horrors. Excuse me?  MY FAVORITE ICED LEMON POUND CAKE FROM STARBUCKS WAS TAKEN OFF THE MARKET? DEAR GOD, WHAT WERE THEY THINKING? WHERE HAVE I BEEN?

I assumed that since my husband and I have been on a strict budget and we don’t have the money to buy anything special like Starbucks coffee everything was still the same. In the very infrequent times that I did treat myself to a latte it was probably in the afternoon when I just assumed they were out of stock of my all-time favorite, deliciously iced lemon pound cake.Yes, I am salivating.

The winter was so LONG and hard that I didn’t go out much, having Fibromyalgia it’s hard enough to get out of bed not to mention get dressed and go out, imbalanced in the snow and ice.  Sometimes “ignorance is bliss.” I didn’t miss my tangy and sweet pound cake because I didn’t know it was gone.

But, there are times when mistakes have been made and corrected without a fuss (not often, I know.) I have to give it to Starbucks, not many companies listen to their customers and right a wrong. YOU ROCK!! I am proud of your establishment and I am saving up money. I don’t know exactly when the lemon pound cake will be coming back but I will be on-line to buy it with a latte just to make me feel good and to give myself a treat. A company that actually LISTENS to their customers and wants their customers to be happy? THANK YOU.

Having not thought about the yummy sweet/tart lemon cake, you know what happens to me. I NEED It NOW. I may have to visit my local Starbucks immediately and ask when exactly it is coming back, date/time/place. I will be there, I promise. Thank you, Starbucks for everything that you do, I would work for you anytime especially if I got a discount on dessert.

My confession: I’m a slut for sour and sweet desserts. Oh fine, I’m a slut for desserts.

For those of you who bake ( and bake well) I’ve LEARNED OF a very good substitute from the delicious Ina Garten. It’s a little too advanced for me. She has a wonderful recipe for a lemon pound cake:

For those like me, who are not advanced bakers come join me. You will find me on-line at the nearest Starbucks, waiting, patiently and with LOVE.

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Mild Fish And Peanut Butter Ice Cream (Food Cop)

Cupcake that tasted exactly like a Reese's Pea...

Cupcake that tasted exactly like a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Oh stop, even I wouldn’t eat those two together although a light peanut sauce may go very nicely on filet of sole.

My point here is that I have become a different person and my husband doesn’t know what has happened to me and where I have gone. The trouble is I totally agree with him. Who am I?

I have “hated” fish all my life, the smell was repugnant to me and I would not even try it. We all know the “forced salmon” story that I wrote about when “my friend’s mother lied and told me it was tuna fish and FORCED me to eat it” and I don’t see that changing but mild fish is now a must-have. It’s opened up a whole new world of eating experiences. So much more to choose from, it’s exciting.

It started out with a tiny bite of my husband’s file of sole with lemon, butter and caper sauce he ordered at a restaurant. I had ordered a cheeseburger and we always exchange bites or share. I gave him my too- bloody cheeseburger. He cleverly offered me a taste of his dish. He said he liked mine more than his when he saw me eying his delicate dish, I fell for it. Love that man, loved the fish. Afterwards he grinned and laughed like a  6-year-old. Of course he said our favorite 28-year-old saying “sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.” He won.

Now, I don’t skip past the seafood section I look at it first. It feels so light in my stomach, the only disadvantage is that in two hours I’m hungry again but that’s what snacks are for. I don’t eat very much red meat at all but when I do, I want it to be small and good quality. After that, it will be back to fish, chicken, salad, eggs and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with pleasure.

Sometimes there are things in our world that just don’t make sense. Texture can play a big part. I love my hot cup of strong cup of coffee every morning but coffee ice cream or mocha, edible coffee beans? I wouldn’t go out of my way to order it. I do not like peanuts but love smooth peanut butter, chunky if I must. So when my husband’s dessert came with peanut butter ice cream instead of our beloved hazelnut, discontinued, we were not happy. My husband tried it and liked it and well, of course I had to keep him company.

I put the spoon of ice cream in my mouth, just the tip and it wasn’t….dreadful. It was like Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups that I once assumed (again, another stupid assumption) that I thought I didn’t like but do. A little went a long way but I have to admit that ice cream was very, very tasty.

Be open to new foods, textures, tastes. Even at my old, ripe age you can discover so many new things to eat and drink (still working on the drink part) but water is best for me anyway. Here’s to new great food and water with lemon, hold the ice please, and as always, definitely leave room for dessert. Every. Single. Time.

 

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Cranky Is As Cranky Does…I’m HUNGRY

Chicken soup is a common classic comfort food ...

Chicken soup is a common classic comfort food that might be found across cultures. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

HELP WANTED: LOOKING FOR A SCONE ASAP OR EASY RECIPE

Yes, it’s true. I AM CRANKY and I don’t even need to explain it. I know. That’s enough. I don’t want pity and I can’t change the situations. My physical health, sigh, I have to accept. I’ll live. However, when my life’s joy, (vice,) hobby and life’s work is limited then it gets darned serious. No, I am not on a diet. That would be easy. I wish I was on a diet because there would be a reason and an outcome and a desired result.

But, with my bad luck, I have to be the one whose jaw blows out whose sound carried through the house leaving me shrieking in unbearable pain and crying that my husband came running. I knew I should have gone to the ER.

I saw my dentist, an oral surgeon and now I’m supposed to see a TMJ specialist. I’m not surprised, it was just another thing to heap on but for me, this was a personal tragedy. Not being able to EAT?  I don’t like drinking or smoking or anything else, I have no hobbies but one thing I love is food and now that has been taken away from me. I’m yearning for real food that is not mashed, white, banana-like or blended.

A fresh batch of homemade buttermilk scones.

A fresh batch of homemade buttermilk scones. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

And even if I tried to like drinking I have recently been informed that my kidneys are in bad shape too. Surprise!

I’m sick of chicken soup, vanilla milkshakes, rice and bananas. I long for warm, crunchy French bread dripping with butter, a large sandwich, basically anything I am now denied. I still want scones, pizza and a great big salad and did I mention scones?

I can’t bear to call another doctor tonight. I’m in no mood. It’s almost time for dinner, home-made chicken soup with mashed up Saltines in them, I learned that from my kids. Luckily, we have cupcakes from yesterday, they better taste good. I need something before I start to scream.

The oral surgeon also said that this pain will come back that some internal bleeding happened when the disk in my jaw slipped. He’s a nice guy, a really nice guy, he didn’t even charge for the five-minute consult but I wish he hadn’t said what he did.

I’m hungry, I want to eat real food, Last night I rebelled and tried (the operative word) to eat teeny, tiny bites of pizza with fork and knife (a la Diblasio ) which really was no fun at all and of course the pizza WAS BURNED.

Out of pure desperation I ate my husband’s filet of sole drenched in egg and butter:  I don’t even like fish but it was something different.

BUT, I want scones, surely I could eat those, sweet scones made with love and wild blueberries, I see them dancing beneath my eyes.

I wish I could bake with ease. With all my illnesses I just may have to acquire a new skill: baking. No more liquid diet. ‘Eat as if you were a three-year old” the charming doctor said. I will listen to him, cutting everything up into tiny pieces, everything for a taste of variety.

I’m stuck on muffins and stones. Any kind. Soon. Help me. Please?

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Jacquelyn: Were You At “The Taste 2” Finale?

English: Jean Claude Szurdak and Jacques Pepin...

English: Jean Claude Szurdak and Jacques Pepin (right) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Guest judge: Chef Jacques Pepin. In the finals, Marina, Lee and Louise.

The season of “The Taste” is over. As I’ve stated in earlier posts my highpoint of the show was when Jacquelyn exited mid-show, literally walking off stage. She is my Norma Rae. Nigella seriously needs to learn to play with others.

The first test was to make something for the poor and for the rich. It was so uninteresting it really didn’t matter what they made. Basically for the “rich” they added a lot more butter, truffles and caviar. For the “poor,” they all made a stew or soup.

Many past contestants in the audience: I see Cassie and Sarah, Shellie and Don, Audrey and Jay, among others; I am not making this up or exaggerating, I swear, I didn’t know who Audrey was because she didn’t mention “her fans” and she wasn’t complaining.The one person I wanted to see but DIDN’T was Jacquelyn. What, no invite? You people have NO sense of humor.

Final challenge: “Basic cooking: Make me breakfast, lunch and dinner bites that showcase your most dazzling skills.”

They tried. They did TRY.  I didn’t really think anyone made anything over the top that the judges actually swooned over. We’ve all seen good before, the last few episodes missed “stunning and amazing.”The finale did not break the “just ok” pattern. Shame.

Lee: Breakfast: Parmesan flan with bacon quail egg. He forgot that he left his parmesan flan in the oven but remembered at the last second. He saved his behind and put them in the cooler (not his behind, the flan) with bacon, eggs. Pure luck. Lunch: crab cake (he wastes a lot of time trying to get the crabs out of the shell) with avocado. Dinner: strip steak, cauliflower purée..” He was absolutely frazzled,or should I say fried?   Lee plates too soon doesn’t listen to Chef Jacques Pepin who advises him to plate later. Lee is acting cocky, doesn’t listen to the guest Chef.  Poor judgment. Dinner: Strip steak, parmesan tulle, mustard demi glace. Even with his fan favorite girlfriend Cassie giggling (did anyone else notice that rapid fire laugh) nothing could stop him or slow him down.

Marina:  (Chef Pepin looked a little befuddled around her) Marina starts with an (English muffin,?) quail egg, onion, fig and bacon. (“well executed”) :Lunch: Fried spring roll, oyster and pork, deemed (“not that successful.”) Dinner: short ribs, rice, kale, port wine.  She forgets to taste her own food, a definite no-no. Marina won’t take advice from anyone,she listens to no one, she prides herself on that. Marina used chicken testicles and pork blood. She certainly is imaginative. Have you cooked with chicken testicles and pork blood? Me either.

Louise: Breakfast: Fried quail egg with tomato sauce, (similar to Chef Pepin’s model that he displayed.) Lunch: fried oyster po’ boy sandwich, Dinner: steak with red wine sauce (which Chef Pepin salvaged)  potatoes, makes food look beautiful (she is also a food stylist.) She touches the steak and isn’t sure it is ready, Chef Pepin touches it and says 5 more minutes, in it goes. She is more needy and ready to listen to Jacques Pepin and believe me it shows. Her sauce breaks, she can’t use it. Chef Pepin helps her find a teaspoon of meat drippings again. Lousie feels like the underdog (again) and complains about something, was it brioche again? Much to everyone’s surprise, including Louise, she won “The Taste.”  As if she was in “Survivior” Louise flew under the radar, bothered no one, smiled a lot and portrayed herself as the victim.

3rd place LEE, 2nd place Marina, First place Louise

Congratulations? I mean, Congratulations.

The show is over. I’m done. We are all grateful. Would I watch it again? Probably.

*any error of description of food was unintentional and due to extreme fibromyalgia tiredness. I still am annoyed at the amount of alcohol on TV, just sayin’ sponsors?

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I Dream OF Cupcakes

Just the other day there was a persistent knock on our front door and a neighbor, who has cupcake1two young girls, was there holding out a plate of pink cupcakes. It was Valentine’s Day and school was  canceled because of yet another snowstorm so she was hoping to give them away to her neighbors.

My husband took two in and when I came downstairs and I saw these two mounds of sweet perfection I nearly wept. I wish I was dramatizing this but I am not. There, right in front of me were two vanilla (my absolute favorite flavor) with pink  icing and little white mounds of frosting on top  cupcakes. Shown to the right. I get happy just looking at the photo I took of the cupcake, yum.

I dreamed about them for the rest of the day, my saliva glands in overdrive, thinking about my pink cupcake, when I should have it, where I should have it but knowing for sure it would need an icy cold glass of milk to go with it. This was serious and I wasn’t going to muck it up for anything.

Sweets are very important to me and these, like angels from Heaven, gifts bestowed unto me, meant so much. There have been so many rough days behind us and I fear an equal amount of rough days ahead of us. These cupcakes were a respite from all that was bad and scary and unknown.

The randomness of a relative stranger, walking down the street in the snow to share her  cupcakes with her neighbors because she didn’t want to waste them was such a loving and kind thing.

Pink cupcakes. A random act of kindness. I will pay it forward…

Dedicated to A, J, and B

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