•on November 26th, 2011
Happy Thanksgiving weekend, everyone! This is the first year I co-hosted a dinner — with my friend Krysten – and it was a success, despite a few minor hiccups at the beginning. (By hiccups, I mean that I showed up at her apartment early to start prepping while she was at work, as we’d planned, only to realize that I had, in fact, forgotten the keys to her apartment. Ahem.) Despite that snafu, everything was lovely, our company was fantastic and the food was amazing. See above for some photos of things we ate. Mmm.
Kung Fu Panda balloon
I’d gotten up early that morning to see the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade with my friend Helen, which turned out to be really fun, even if our location was less than ideal. We had a great view of the balloons but were too far away to see the floats or hear the music, which was a little disappointing. Next year, we’ll get it right!
I took a lot of pictures of people taking pictures. Kermit seen in the background
Click here to see a slideshow of my photos from Thanksgiving, including tons of parade shots. Also, I wrote a Thanksgiving Day story for Found Michigan, which you can find here.
•on October 10th, 2011
I wouldn’t consider myself to be a picky eater: I like weird foods and will try anything once. Sure, I didn’t eat meat for a long time and am still a bit iffy about some of it, but that has less to do with the taste and more to do with overthinking its origins. (I can’t eat chicken legs without picturing a chicken. And its legs. Running. And then I’m not hungry.) Some of the foods I eat the most — brussels sprouts, kale, tofu — are some of the top foods most people hate. My list? It mostly consists of things people really, really love. They include:
- Doughnuts. Something about the texture — so fluffy, so formless — freaks me out, and a doughnut’s overt sweetness requires me to balance it with lots of black coffee. Frankly, I’d prefer to just have the coffee and leave the doughnuts for someone else.
- Lamb. It’s often really greasy and slimy and guarantees I’ll have a stomachache within 20 minutes. Also, I spent too much time watching Shari Lewis and Lamb Chop as a kid, and I can’t help but picture his cute little sock face when I take a bite.
- Cupcakes. I’m so often tempted by their cute designs and bright colors, and I’m almost always disappointed. One bite, and I remember: I don’t really like cake. I don’t really like super sweet things. I really dislike frosting. Cupcakes are just the trendy loser cousins to my beloved cheesecake.
- Bananas. This comes and goes in phases. Sometimes I enjoy the occasional banana. But it has to be perfectly yellow: no spots, no green. The texture still freaks me out a bit, and halfway through, I usually remember that I’m not much of a fan.
- Red Bull. This isn’t technically a food, but I hate it so much that when a bartender pours or even opens it, the smell alone turns my stomach.
- Watermelon. I cannot comprehend why this watery, weird-flavored, squishy/gritty filler fruit is such a beloved part of everyone’s summer. If I order a fruit salad and it arrives with mostly melon, I’m pissed.
The most interesting food hatred has to belong to my roommate Kat, who despises citrus. She can’t even be in the room when I’m peeling an orange because it gives her a strong headache.
How about you? What foods do you hate that everyone else seems to love?
•on August 22nd, 2011
I became a vegetarian in high school after sitting at the lunch table with a butcher and a farmer. The butcher explained how someone could easily lose a finger in the grinder and nobody would know. The farmer chimed in and told me how cows were slaughtered. I picked the pepperoni off my pizza and didn’t touch meat for years after that moment. Then one day, I started having weird dreams — about steak. And salami. And burgers. I tried eating leafy greens, which are supposed to replace the nutrients you’re craving when you crave meat. It didn’t help.
The day I woke up craving a Slim Jim, I gave in and ate a hamburger. It was delicious.
•on August 20th, 2011
I ate this for lunch. It was so delicious, and the slices looked like lace. I really don’t want summer to end.
I conclude my week of few words with a picture taken by me. Oh, carby goodness.
In a related note, I’ve been told a great many times recently that I look like Rebecca Black.
BSS | Breakfast Interrupted from Bruton Stroube Studios on Vimeo.
This video is really lovely, and it’s especially attractive right now because I’m starving. And in need of some caffeine. And really wanting to get into a food fight.
•on April 26th, 2011
Part of my Michigan adventure included going with Benita and Josh for brunch at the Whitney, a gorgeous mansion turned restaurant in Detroit. While it was a bit pricey, especially for Detroit, the unlimited mimosas, delicious food and attentive wait staff made it worth the money. Plus, we got to snoop around the restaurant after brunch, where we saw the following:
•on April 25th, 2011
My dad, my uncle Hans and I made homemade sushi when I was back in Michigan. My dad had somehow acquired a very fancy, very expensive tuna steak as a retirement gift, and he’d been saving it in the freezer since last summer. Almost a year later, we finally got around to making the sushi, and I was really impressed with how delicious it was.
While a few of us were already sushi lovers, others in the group had never eaten it before. Before we ate, I spent a few minutes teaching my uncle Al how to use chopsticks. I then explained the different sauces and condiments that were spread out on the table. As he watched, I expertly piled my roll with ginger, dipped it in soy sauce, and added a generous helping of wasabi.
I didn’t realize, however, that the wasabi you buy at Walmart in Alpena, Michigan, is the hottest kind I’d ever eaten. Moments after I’d demonstrated what a pro I was at sushi preparation, I began to gag. Then sweat. Finally, with tears streaming from my eyes, I was forced to spit my first sushi roll into a napkin. Al laughed, picked up his own roll — also covered with wasabi — and ate it, without even breaking a sweat. read more
•on April 20th, 2011
Sweet Tooth’s used to be an ice cream and dessert place in Alpena. It’s closed now, and I just can’t imagine why; the rotten tooth on the sign sure makes me want to eat lots and lots of sugar.
•on March 19th, 2011
Happy Friday! In honor of the end of a week of work and fun (and disappointing Spartans losses), I give you a post full of food photos. If you feel jealous of the things I’ve eaten recently, I don’t blame you. My friend Nola is an amazing cook.
Breakfast: Challah french toast, fruit, blueberry syrup and coffee. Perfection.
Dinner: Leek and goat cheese tart.
Dessert: Pear tart.
•on February 27th, 2011
I’ve been an unofficial vegetarian for a little while now. I go through phases where the thought of eating meat grosses me out so much, and this is one of them. I was a vegetarian for years for that reason — not necessarily for health or ethical reasons (although those did factor in) but just because the idea of putting meat into my mouth made me shudder. Then one day, I just really, really wanted meat. I would wake up in the morning craving, of all things, Slim Jims. I would dream about steak. So I ate meat again.
I’m not sure how long this veg phase will last, but looking at pictures like the one above (I took it yesterday in Chinatown) doesn’t exactly motivate me to sit down with a giant burger or anything.
•on February 2nd, 2011
We all know I love coffee, and maybe that’s part of the draw of Jennifer Causey’s gorgeous blog Simply Breakfast. Causey documents the most important meal of the day through her beautiful photographs of mouthwatering dishes. Unlike many food blogs, it’s not just about the food that is consumed but also how it’s staged and lit, and that’s what makes it a joy to browse through. The bonus, of course, is that each of these gorgeous photos contains an ever-important dose of caffeine.
•on January 24th, 2011
A lot of people I know are doing some form of a cleansing diet right now — perhaps in the afterglow of New Year’s resolutions. Some people are doing a simple juice fast, others are following hard-core programs that involve cayenne pepper and lemonade, and some are just sticking to only fruits and vegetables. Many of them report feeling amazing and say their skin glows and they’re surprisingly full of energy. Others complain of headaches and lethargy.
The idea of a cleanse sounds interesting to me — spending a week or two eating only healthy, natural foods or juices in order to rid your body of toxins — but I also remember the days of Elissa the Vegetarian. In short, I was a mess. I decided to be a vegetarian on a whim and kept it up for years, but I never really did it correctly. Instead of replacing meat with some other form of protein, I essentially ate only side dishes. I became anemic. I got headaches. When I started eating meat again, I felt amazing and remembered what it felt like to have energy.
I realize that there are a ton of healthy vegetarians out there, and I know a vegetarian or vegan diet is healthier than an omnivorous diet for many reasons. But I’m wary of these cleanses that have you only drinking juice or adding weird things to your beverages in order to “clean” your system. I get headaches easily if I don’t eat, and the idea of drinking juice for a week sounds odd to me and borderline unhealthy. (Also, the idea of giving up coffee makes me shudder.) But if so many people love it, maybe I’m wrong.
Have you tried a cleansing diet of any kind? Did you like it?
•on January 21st, 2011
Last week, I went to a grocery store in Chinatown, where I noticed that almost every item of food was graced with cartoon mascots.
Above, we have a Zorro-style bandit with giant ears (or wings?) representing cheese-and-shrimp-flavored puffs, which sound utterly unappetizing. To the left is a chicken on a can of chicken stock that my friend pointed out looks eerily like Peter Griffin. (See its mushroom companion here.) And below, we have a strange flower person with a mysteriously giant thumb that appeared on a package of frozen steamed buns. There were also two cute chocolate lollipops that caught our attention. Compared with this, American food just isn’t as much fun.
•on January 19th, 2011
I was walking with a few friends in Chinatown, and we passed a man eating a tube of cotton candy as if it were a burrito. Apparently in New York, cotton candy isn’t just a carnival food; its a normal Sunday-afternoon snack.
•on January 14th, 2011
I can only think of one person who really, truly hates ketchup. She can’t even stand the smell of it. For everyone else: a tribute to the most delicious and unappreciated condiment. Huzzah!
And a quote from Henry Miller:
Americans can eat garbage, provided you sprinkle it liberally with ketchup, mustard, chili sauce, Tabasco sauce, cayenne pepper, or any other condiment which destroys the original flavor of the dish.
I don’t disagree, Henry. (Pass the garbage.)
What’s your favorite condiment?
•on January 6th, 2011
As I eat my seasonally appropriate lunch of a veggie burger and Brussels sprouts, I can’t stop fantasizing about summer veggies. There really is nothing better than a good tomato.