I’m a minister’s kid from a backwater God-fearing town in Washington. (I can just imagine my parents saying “Hey now!” to their computer screens.) Thus, the High Holidays were obviously not celebrated much around those parts. In fact, the one observant Jewish family that I knew in town growing up had to order all their Kosher for Passover foods a month in advance from the local piggly wiggly. You can imagine how diverse we were back then.
So its pretty safe to say that I’m kind of new to the whole High Holiday concept. I knew that Rosh Hashanah was a big deal as it got kids out of school for it and I didn’t have to move my car. But what was it? Was is like Thanksgiving where you kind of just sat around with a bunch of relatives uncomfortably and ate too much? Were there special Rosh Hashanah dishes? If you were a Rosh Hashanah orphan would you have to have three kinds of potatoes like those people did in that one year in that episode of Friends?
Time for some investigative journalism. I texted my two Jewish friends about this potentially controversial subject at midnight .
Food. We need it, we eat it, we (hopefully) enjoy it with frequency. If you have the means, you might entirely subsist on someone else cooking it for you. If you’re lucky, you live somewhere where you can have a variety of places to choose from.
Like so many of my fellow New Yorkers, quite a few of us do just that- we live out of restaurants. (I don’t.) As there’s a dizzying array of places to be chosen from, how would we know which is the best option for the occasion? Is that bagel going to be the pinnacle of perfection at breakfast? Is that pizza going to change your world at lunch? Are you going to get past third base with that dinner option your suggesting tonight? How will we ever know if what we’re going to be eating is good? Read the rest of this entry »
When I was in Rochester, I noticed a strange thing amongst the locals. They were obsessed with their local chain grocery store, Wegmans.
Literally everyone was oohing and aahing over this store any time it was mentioned. It wasn’t just as simple as “it exists”, but more like they’d met the love of their grocery lives. I met more than one person who claimed that they go to Wegmans every single day for something, which is more than I can say about my grocery store even in the height of holiday cooking seasons.
It’s not like I was unfamiliar with this cultish devotion though. I have relatives outside of Princeton who have also fallen prey to Wegmans. Wegmans this, Wegmans that. Wegmans could save 10 orphans from a burning building. Wegmans would solve the budget defecit. Wegmans was a deity. What was so great about this superstore chain anyways? Read the rest of this entry »
Happy Labor Day Weekend! Three whole days to sit in a car, battling traffic for five minutes of serenity on a shore. The moment when you have to make a grim decision between the triad of Sbarros, Nathan’s Hot Dogs or whatever the overpriced turnpike minimart has to offer in meager fare. The spandex on your swimsuit will stretch ever tighter as you slurp down another slushy drink.
I will join you in solidarity. I will hold your hand as you wonder if Hardee’s would ever survive outside of a rest stop. I will press the “on” button for you on that blender on the dock. I’ll contribute to the cookie crumbs ground into that rental Impala, eff it, it’s a rental anyways. You and me, forever and always this weekend.
Thus, get prepared for a recap of some of the best that Unprofessional Cookery has to offer for the next few days. That is, if you’re not roasting marshmallows on a bonfire right now or perfecting your rope swing cannonball. Which you should be. Right now.
A few weeks ago I was chatting with my neighbor who had taken it upon himself to try to make his own (better) version of the Taco Bell Crunchwrap Supreme with the lady he was dating. The idea struck me as novel because I had never really given much thought to the idea of improving on something that was set at the absolute lowest benchmark in dining experiences. Also, knowing my neighbor, I could never picture him eating Taco Bell by his own volition. This lady must have wooed him many times over.
The seeds of curiosity were planted with my neighbor’s project, which flourished with the pictures of the finished product that he had sent me. Apparently homemade Taco Bell is pretty good, once you figure out things like nacho cheese sauce on your own. It got me to thinking if I could perhaps do the same but even better than that. Read the rest of this entry »
Coming up with daily content isn’t always a cakewalk. There’s been more than one time that I’ll be in that twilight state at night, wondering if I’ve ever covered some obscure fact about parsley. I’ve stood in my shower more often than not, shampooing my hair, hoping that I can massage my scalp into conjuring up a brilliant (and relevant) topic. Sigh.
So I completely forget about food holidays most of the time until, usually, my roommate reminds me that its something like National Water Chestnut Day or Cheese-o-palooza. Always, I curse this obscure knowledge of his as I could have been extolling the plusses of the waffle on its day to shine. Grr. Read the rest of this entry »
There are some things that you eat out of desire and others eaten out of purpose. Oatmeal, your vegetables, these are all things that we begrudgingly live with. We make our peace with vitamins and minerals. However, on a night when the ambient temperature reached the same temperature of the inside of my mouth I put away all my utilitarian foodstuffs and was hit by a yen so hard, so distinct, that it was like a choir of sirens.
Cravings such as this are never a good thing.
Yesterday morning, if you were up around 1:15 AM or so and near a computer, you probably got to witness one of the greatest events of our time. This, of course, was Curiosity the Mars rover landing successfully on the surface of the planet. Before you know it, young Martians will be declaring their neighborhoods “over” and settling in deep crevasses elsewhere.
I was not awake for this. I missed out on history being made.
Anyways, if you were awake, you probably got to see these guys (above) hitting a career milestone that would get them carte blanche into any aerospace job they wanted from here to Kazakstan. I. however, thought of the much underloved candy bar that is equally as deep and dark as the night sky where that planet resides. I thought of the Mars candy bar. I also thought of the now defunct Mars Bar on the Bowery, but the candy bar seemed more appealing this morning.