As I type this, it's 12:07p where I live. Which means, according to this blogger body, it's time to stand up, stretch, walk around a bit, and grab a snack. If there's one thing I've learned from working at home, it's that I won't remember to eat an actual lunch until it's too late, so I've gotten into this groove where I eat breakfast as early as I can, then have little mini-meals thoroughout the day. It actually helps me to eat smaller portions at dinner time, and I find I'll choose healthier munchies in general. Win win.
In the late 1990s, there was the brief phenomenon of How Are You Peeling?, in which some guy realized that fruits and veggies sometimes look like faces when they unevenly spurt from the calyx of their flowers. Calendars and email forwards ensued. You remember.
Then, Carl Kleiner, the mastermind behind those amazing photos of ingredients from the IKEA cookbook, decided to play with the above idea...but, you know, make it way better.
So, you know those days when it's late Sunday night, and you realize that you totally wasted your free time over the weekend? Like, no projects, no friends, no special meals, no resting, no reading...just cataloged hours down the internet rabbit hole, maybe some laundry, and justa buncha driving?
Then, you know those other weekends, when it's Monday morning, and you're like, "Wow. What a full and awesome couple of days that was."
I had one of those this week.
Okay, well, to be fair, this was an "extended" four-day weekend for me. (No posts on Thursday and Friday. Did you notice?) For my birthday gift, my mom organized a trip to Columbus, IN, which is a small town of 40,000 people that has, like, sixty major examples of modern architecture. All the churches, elementary schools, public buildings, even the jail are contemporarily designed works of art. Six of the buildings are national historic landmarks. The library was designed by I.M. Pei, the church across the street by Eliel Saarinen, and the local bank branch by Eero Saarinen.
It's June, which means it's fair season. And fair season means it's putting-weird-things-in-the-deep-fryer season.
Surely, plenty of both solid sweet and savory items have taken a turn in the fryer, but what about liquids? Like Kool-Aid?
Apparently, it can be done.
Blue No. 1. Yellow No. 5. Red No. 40. "Without them, soft drinks would be clear, Cheetos would be beige, Froot Loops would just be Cheerios, and Easter eggs wouldn’t be nearly as much fun."
Such begins IDSGN's fascinating look at the actual colors that go into those foods that you'd like to say you don't eat, but color your tongue all the same.
Did you know that men who wear muscle shirts when answering the door are three times more likely to order pepperoni pizza than any other kind?
Or perhaps that 17% of all restaurants are pizzerias? Or that 93% of U.S. citizens eat pizza at least once a month?
You will once you check out this sweet infographic from GrandePizzaOnline.
The explosion of the "food porn" T.V. scene has finally calmed down. The Food Network has dissolved into two separate channels, with the Cooking Channel featuring actual cooking, and the original Food Network with "Cupcake Wars" and Guy Fieri driving around with sunglasses on the back of his head.
Which means two things: 1) the best cooking and food-related shows have weathered the storm, sticking around and 2) you can't just flip on a single channel when you're feeling hungry and want to know what to make. Turns out, the best food shows span across channels like PBS (duh), Bravo, ABC, and, one little guy left on the Food Network (Nice job, Alton.)
Bon Appètit has begun a new Q&A column entitled "Back of the Napkin," in which they, apparently, talk to famous people about food. First up is comedian Aziz Ansari, the Parks and Recreation star who's standup and movie career is blowing up.
And, as it turns out, it's pretty interesting. And funny.
Every once in a while, there comes along a single subject Tumblr blog so fastidious, so inspired, so freaking-ridiculous-it's-hilarious that it must be shared.
Today, that blog is Bea Arthur Mountains Pizza, the definitive collection of pictures featuring Bea Arthur, mountains, and pizza.
Anyone who regularly reads ManMade knows I have a deep love for regional Mexican cuisine. (It even infilitrates my Thanksgiving).
So, whenever I share this with someone local, they always say "Me too! El Vaquero is awesome." El Vaquero is fine, but it's about as Mexican as biscuits and gravy. (Actually, I had a pretty awesome Latinized biscuits and gravy at Dos Caminos in Manhattan, but you know what I mean.)
Most of the chips-and-salsa serving, combo platter, sombrero-laden restaurants near your local shopping center are better categorized as "Tex-Mex," that is, the north of the border food that uses the flavors of Mexico - masa, fresh and dried chiles, and aromatics.
Which, if it needs said, is delicious! (Well, El Vaquero isn't, but many can be.) It's just Tex-Mex, and most would be sorta unrecognizable to many Mexicans. But, that's okay, 'cause good is good.
Earlier today, I learned that Jim Henson had collaborated with Johnny Hart to make a tv test pilot for a 30 minute "Wizard of Id" show.
The video is okay. I've never been much of a fan of The Wizard of Id to begin with, but it got me thinking about how much I love Jim Henson, and how awesome his work has been for decades.
Over the weekend, I rode by bike over to the secondhand book store. I often get in trouble here, since it's even more tough not to overload on goodies when they're much less expensive [and recycled, I tell myself!], so when I go by bike, I know I'm limited to just the few that can fit on my wheel rack.
I decided to live dangerously, and hung out a bit in the Food and Wine section (this and the Art/Design aisle are serious tempters for me), and noticed one thing:
There are a $%*load of cookbooks out there.
Sure, I know folks have different types of expectations when it comes to food, and even if you're not good at it, nearly everyone prepares some sort of food for themselves.
But, oh my, the genericness and redundancy of so many of these was overwhelming...I escaped a potentially credit-crushing trip with two very lucky finds (why anyone would sell these back is a mystery) - David Chang's Momofuku cookbook and Anthony Bourdain's The Nasty Bits. I've checked out Chang's tomb several times from the library, and it's never gotten old, so finding it for $7.99 was pretty amazing. I'm headed to my local Asian market in a few hours to get started...
The Urban Grocer reports, "Sculpted, tweaked, and photographed. Nope, we’re not talking about the latest super model; we’re talking about meat. Raw cuts of red meat that Philadelphia-based artist Dominic Episcopo took as his muse for his latest inspired project, Meat America.
Channeling the inner butcher within us all, Meat America includes an impressive collection of photographed meats fashioned to look like everything from Elvis and Ben Franklin, to New Jersey and Texas. Through this work, Episcopo intended to celebrate his own unabashed love for meat and “the American appetite for decadent and iconoclastic deliciousness.”
Of course you've heard of Georgia peaches, Alaskan king crab, and Idaho potatoes. But how about Rhode Island coffee milk? Or South Dakota chislic?
I mostly hate party food. I mean, I like parties, and I love food, but somehow when I gather with others, all the options are sour cream and canned mushroom soup laden glops on my paper plate. And if I ever hear another person remark, "You put grape jelly in your meatballs!?!?" like it's some big secret, I may scream.
But not all is lost. Turns out, you can make tons of scrumptious, fresh, and (most importantly) edible finger foods. And by tons, I mean 101. The NYTime's Mark Bittman has created this master list on which you'll find stuff that'd be perfect for any upcoming Christmas or New Year's events, but worth keeping around to reference for a gathering in any season.