September 22, 2019


I have been eating a lot of bacon recently, both for the undeniable pleasure of those delectable, fatty morsels of porcine wonder, direct from a pig that gave his all for me, and for the convenient bonus that it really fills me up in the morning. Toss in an egg or two (my current obsession is with hard-boiling them), and you have yourself a fine and tasty meal. I play around with the condiments I use on the eggs, and have settled for a bit (okay, a dab. well, a large dab on each bite) of mayonnaise, but a spoonful of spicy chili crisp hits the spot too.

Back to bacon! Why is it so good? Well, it has pretty much everything pleasing about food. The fat provides wonderful mouth feel and a succulent texture, the salt gives us a pop of pleasure, the smoky meat has just enough flavor and texture to please, and to top it off, it comes in a convenient shape…just perfect for munching neatly or folding into one’s mouth in a frantic orgy of gluttony and pleasure.

Commenter “Boswell’ recently had an interesting thought…

Kale is the only thing that could actually ruin bacon.

But I stand here before you in all of my reactionary glory and say, “Even kale goes well with bacon!” I recently had a meal, courtesy of a cousin, which included a great kale and bacon and blue cheese salad. Great stuff!

So…bacon may be the perfect food. It compliments everything and ruins nothing. And don’t throw ice cream at me. I have had ice cream with bacon sprinkles and it is a fine, fine thing.

I bought a quart of milk to make a Béchamel, and for whatever reason I never needed it. So I tucked the milk into the corner of the refrigerator, where I know the temperature is slightly below freezing. I hadn’t opened the container, and since it was pasteurized (like 99.9% of milk in America), it was essentially sterile. Fast forward six months (yes, you read that correctly), and all of a sudden I needed a Béchamel, and I didn’t feel like going out for a fresh quart of milk.

So what does a cheap bastard do? Use the damned milk of course. It was fine. The container wasn’t inflated, the milk wasn’t discolored, it smelled like…um…milk, and aside from a bit of separation (which I fixed with a vigorous shake), it was indistinguishable from fresh(er) milk.

My wife was disgusted, and refused to eat the spectacular Cauliflower à la Bluebell that I made with six-month old milk and heels of old cheese, from which I trimmed the mold and desiccated bits.
GAO report examines how date label confusion contributes to food waste
I’m not suggesting that everyone use six-month old stuff, but we do fixate on the various sell by/good until/best before messages that we see on our food. For instance, if a can of peas has an expiration date one year out, then unless the can has a structural failure, I can’t imagine that the peas wouldn’t be safe two years or three years out. Sure, eventually the metal on the outside and the coating on the inside will decay enough for something bad to happen, but I doubt very much that the eight-year-old can of peas in the back of your pantry will kill you.

It is not concern for the starving in the world that motivated me to post this link, because after all, the world produces plenty of food. it is geopolitical issues that prevent us from feeding the world. Hell, if America wanted to, we could take farming seriously, spend the subsidies intelligently and probably feed the world on our own!

No, it was a very conservative sense that we shouldn’t waste. Could I have afforded the $2.25 for another quart of milk? And the $1 for gas and wear and tear to get to the store? Sure. But why waste something that is perfectly okay?

It’s nothing like a classic burger, although it certainly sounds interesting as a peek into the food of bygone years. But the gushing hagiographic tone of the writer is off-putting. I doubt very much that he knows much about Hemingway, who, while one of my favorite authors, was also a prick to most of the people in his life, including all of his wives and all of his children.
How to Make Ernest Hemingway’s Favorite Hamburger
One of Hemingway’s many conceits was his arrogant assumption that the way he did things was the best way. And this recipe doesn’t disabuse me of that impression.

I might give some version of it a shot, although i am reminded of what a foodie friend said to me when I mentioned that i was going to adulterate a burger with some innocuous ingredient (chopped onion I think). “That’s meatloaf!”

[Hat Tip: Misanthropic Humanitarian]

Gordon Ramsay can cook, and he can run restaurants. I have eaten in a few, and everything worked the way it was supposed to, and that is a rare and impressive thing in an industry known for flakiness and stupidity and venality. But he has a reputation as a bit of a dick. Well, maybe more than a bit, but here he is in a different setting. Gordon Ramsay on “Hot Ones” which is a hoot! He seems like an actual human being, with a sense of humor and a brain!
[Did I post this awhile ago? Hell, I have no idea, but it’s worth a watch]

Back before Mexico turned into a war zone, I used to go occasionally, and I would bring back bottles of mezcal that I would buy from mom-and-pop stores. The stuff was probably homemade in less-than-sanitary or safe conditions, and I would filter it when I got back to civilization…through a coffee filter! I chose to ignore the risk of heavy metals or other crap, because I was young and stupid.
Burros, Stones, and Machetes: Here’s How Mezcal Is Distilled
But there has been a renaissance in the mezcal world, and some of the stuff I have tasted recently has been quite good.

[Hat Tip: redc1c4 ]

Oh great. Now I have to start using dried chickpeas instead of canned, and make my easy and rather good hummus recipe into a PITA (see what I did there?). How To make Hummus Oh, the guy’s enthusiasm is infectious! Seriously, dried chickpeas seem like the way to go, and there are other longcuts in this video that make a lot of sense.

And here is Chris Kimball’s new venture, called “Milk Street,” with a similar version of How To make Hummus

Speaking of cool ways to open wine bottles…

Food and cooking tips, Castelvetrano olives with a sprinkle of chili flakes, young wild pigs, crisp bacon (although I am moving toward less crisp), thick and fluffy pita, and good tomatoes that aren’t square, pale pink and covered with Mestizo E.coli: cbd dot aoshq at gmail dot com. Any advocacy of French Toast with syrup will result in disciplinary action up to and including being nuked from orbit. And yes, shaking a Manhattan is blasphemy…it’s in the Bible!

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