Friday, February 13, 2009

Adventures with Jackie and Shannon

Last month Jackie and I took a spontaneous trip to Houston, and then met up later with Stephanie and Samantha in The Woodlands. This is some of my extremely poor documentation of it and our gastronomic adventures.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Pie = Magic

La Cocina es bonita. The Kitchen is beautiful. Jackie, Samantha, Stephanie, and I spent all weekend painting the living room and dining area. They are bright vivid colors, and we love them. We decided to call our apartment "La Concina." Why? Because the four of us have dedicated ourselves to the culinary arts this year. And we are inviting people to help us enjoy the experience. Last week I baked two buttermilk pies: my momma's specialty. Oh Momma! Your pies are magic. What a pleasure it was to watch my friends wolf those slices down. It made me want to bake a pie a day.

In the movie, Waitress, the main character is constantly creating new pie recipes in her mind. They have fabulous names like "Don't want no damn baby apple pie." Another character in the movie spouts off spontaneous poems to his lady love. They are usually awful, but sweet. Here is my own awful, bittersweet spontaneous pie poem:

I was in the mood for lovein'
instead I baked a pie
sugar and flour fill me up
better than any guy

melt the butter, whisk the eggs
pour it in a pan
takes away the heartache
caused by every No-Good Man

brown the crust until it flakes
set the timer right
forget about that true love's kiss
just take a fork and bite!

*this poem is not to be taken seriously and should be ignored by any attractive bachelor.....especially the foreign ones...if you are a handsome fella with a gorgeous accent, you have special permission to sweep me off my feet.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Sorry for the last post. It was an inside joke.

FYI: my mother asked me permission to post one of my poems on her website. This particular one was partly inspired by one of my friend's crazy desire to go on an intense baking spree. My other friend, Taylor Woodruff, shared with me the fabulous term cakein'. You can take a look at the poem at

And while your at it: feel free to peruse my mother's website. : )

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

No anchovies please

Dear Pink Scooter Dude,

Dominos called last night to inform us they were unable to put anchovies on our Hawaiian pizza. I think you know what happened next. I informed Mr. Domino that although my taste buds are perhaps more open to unusual flavors than other people, Hawaiian Pizza with anchovies is one concoction they will never come to know. I apologized for the charade you pulled with that scheming little friend of yours, and am pleased to report the two of you have been blacklisted at every Domino's from here to Timbuktu. The same goes for Papa John's and Mr. Gatti's, whose delivery boys had to be sent away without a tip. And so, to protect the well being of the American Society of Pizza Delivery Boys, we made a special phone call to the following establishments:

Pizza Hut
Little Caesars
Pizza Planet
Double Dave's
Star Pizza
Frank's Pizza
Roman's Pizza
California Pizza Kitchen
Antonio's Flying Pizza
Biba's Greek Pizza
Barry's Pizza and Italian Diner
Cici's Pizza
Gotham Pizza
New York Pizzeria
Spanky's Pizza
Fuzzy's Pizza and Cafe
Late Nite Pie
Collina's Italian Cafe
Sicily Pizza and Pasta
Pinks Pizza
Pizza Inn
Villa Roma Pizza
Pizza Patron
Spaghetti Western Italian Cafe
Godfather's Pizza
Napoli Flying Pizza
Palios Pizza and Italian Food
Johnny's Pizza

Don't think you can get away with buying a frozen DiGiorno. The grocery stores are on the lookout too. Your name haunts pizza makers everywhere. Every time they hear a moped, they clutch their rolling pins and tremble.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Scrambled Eggs, Scrambled Minds

I cried a few hours ago, chopping an onion. I forgot onions make you do that. I just started hacking away at the thing, when my eyes began to sting. I kept at it, trying to be the hard core chef. But tears continued to bubble out, and I eventually stopped. I'm not that hard core yet.

I am learning how to cook. Right now, the air in my apartment is lingering on the smell of curry and bacon. It's a scrambled egg recipe I got out of my Cookbook for Poor Poets. From what I can tell, the dish came out successfully. My roommate Jackie enjoyed it at least.

The two of us went grocery shopping together yesterday. I don't know what it was, but something about Hurricane Ike made us forget how to eat. Electricity has been back on for more than a week, but we cling to survival mode. Our refrigerator remains half empty, and we walk around our kitchen like zombies. We take trips to Walmart, but all we can do is stare at the shelves.

"I just don't know what to buy," I told Jackie. "I can think of stuff I used to get, but something keeps me from wanting it. I think there is a part of me that is afraid we will just have to throw everything away again."

Walmart itself depresses me. Items like milk and eggs are taking forever to be replenished. Half the shelves have yet to be stocked. I start grabbing items I never bought in my entire life. A jar of almond butter. A can of Pillsbury cinnamon buns. When we turn into the produce section, Jackie and I run into a woman clutching her grocery basket. She's shaking her head at a rack of wilted lettuce.

"Where did all the food go?" she asks us. "Ike is supposed to be over."

Jackie and I are actually proud of ourselves. When we head for the self checkout, there are only a few frozen meals. We survey the basket holding chicken breasts, nutmeg, cardamom, bacon, Perrier water bottles, yogurt, asparagus, and stuffed salmon - wrapped up from the seafood section.

"Jackie, our shopping cart looks like a real grownups!"

"I know!' she replies jubilantly, as if I read her mind.

Perhaps we are starting to wake back up. Our appetites are calling - ready to be nourished.

written by Ann Rogers

  • 6 eggs, well beaten
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 6 tbs cream
  • 4 slices of bacon, diced
  • 1 small onion, chopped fine
  • 1/2 green bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup butter

Dissolve the curry powder and salt in the cream and add to beaten eggs. Fry bacon until crisp, then sauté onions and pepper. Discard any excess fat and pour egg mixture into pan. Scramble slowly. Meanwhile, brown the butter in a saucepan and pour a little over each serving of eggs.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Random Musings of the Taste Buds

Food I hated when I was a kid:

ranch dressing

Food I love now:

ranch dressing


For whatever reason, I have never been able to love this fruit. I met a girl this summer who shared my distaste for this repulsive yellow monster.

"I hate everything that has to do with the banana," she said. "I hate the color. I hate the smell. I hate the way you have to undress it. It is so degrading."

And admit it. No matter how sexy, elegant, or posh a person may be, eating a banana instantly makes them look like a baboon.

However, years ago, I found to my horror that there was a relative of the banana that I did not feel repulsed by. The ever lovely plantain. I was first introduced to it at Gloria Estevan's restaurant in Florida. (The name escapes me...) The plantains were served fried, and when I bit into them, I can still remember the delightful crunch. It was better than potato chips. I was an instant fan of Cuban food after that moment.

I love little surprises like that. Food is such a personal thing for people. Name any type of food to someone, and you are sure to hear a very strong opinion. People just don't mess around when it comes to their taste buds.

The following recipe is an ode to the first time I relished a banana. No, I have not tried it. It would be difficult with nothing but a microwave and minifridge:

Tostones de Plátano(fried plantains)

Serves: six adults

Preparation time: About thirty minutes. Ingredients: 3 or 4 green plantains, peeled and cut at a slant, so that a medium-sized plantain yields around six pieces seasoning to taste (garlic salt, ground pepper, ground oregano)

Fry in a deep pan over medium to medium-high heat until the pieces begin to turn crisp. It's best to fry a few pieces at a time.

Remove the pieces. Set over a firm surface and press down on each piece with a hard instrument such as a roller until it becomes flattened thin and elongated. (Unless, of course, you avail yourself of a Tostonera - a gadget that will press the plantain piece into the shape of a Toston)

Return to the frying pan and continue to fry until they look quite crisp. Remove excess frying oil by setting over paper towels. Use as a side dish to substitute for French fries.

Warning: your diners may not want to go back to French fries in the future! Use as a side dish to substitute for French fries. You can freeze the plantain pieces before the second frying. They will last for months in the freezer! Careful, though: "for months" doesn't mean "forever".