Brown Food

Brown Food

Y. enthusiastically eats a dish (appr. 2/3 cup) of Nutro Natural Choice Chicken Meal, Rice & Oatmeal Formula for Sensitive Stomachs every morning at 7:15 a.m. and every evening at 5:30 p.m. His food comes in a green bag. Soon we will convert him to one feeding daily. As you might recall, Y. is not a grazer; he must not be allowed to have constant access to his food or he will consume it until just beyond capacity.

Le Menu

My turn for grocery shopping this week, so I retrieved the goods on 2/10. And here is my plan, school lunch-menu style:

Monday: Vegetable chili (var. of this) with a loaf of thin-sliced sourdough.
Tuesday: Applesauce pancakes with veg-protein sausages and SW vegetable medley.
Wednesday: Homemade pizzas. Choice: ham, chicken, fresh basil, alfredo OR pepperoni, hot olive mix, tomato sauce.
Thursday: A tear-filled mug of lonesome (as the girls fly west for the weekend and Ph. and I enjoy bottomless bowl-o-cold-cereal?). Maybe a Stauffer’s bag meal. Also, I have the materials for chipped beef, a dish I haven’t had since 1985.
Friday: Cellophane delight leftovers (as Ph., too, vacates, gone skiing).
Saturday: Erawan Thai take-out in celebration of SU’s stunning win over Georgetown.
Sunday: Bowl of popcorn. Reminds me of a teammate in college who was not kidding (even though everyone laughed uncomfortably) when he said he curbed his hunger by filling up on water and going straightaway to sleep.


Alone on a plate, a tingaling is not the most eye-appealing treat of the
season. But what of it? What their presentational aesthetic lacks is
recovered ten times over in their flavor. These are indulgent, easy cookies.


Just like I do every year (it is customary), I mixed together a batch of them
the other day. When I was a kid, these were a sure bet: a seasonal staple.
They were in all of my grandparents’ kitchens (or cookie tins, elsewhere
positioned) at the holidays. These simple cookies are, for me, like a portal to
another time and place. By scent alone they relocate me in Sheboygan, Wisc.,
fill my head with strong impressions of that happy, recurrent scene that played
out year after year throughout the late 70’s and early 80’s.


First, the family recipe:
1 – 8 oz. bag of butterscotch chips
1 – 6 oz. bag of semisweet chocolate chips
1 – 4 oz. can of chow mein noodles
1 – cup salted Spanish peanuts

When I made them the other day, however, I used the following combination
for a double-batch:
2 – 8 oz. bags of butterscotch chips
1 – 8 oz. bag of milk chocolate chips
2 – 6 oz. bags of chow mein noodles
2 – cups dry roasted peanuts

Combine the crunchy noodles and the peanuts in a medium bowl. In a
glass dish, melt the chips into a liquid. I did this using a medium
setting in the microwave. Pour the melted chocolate and butterscotch
over the dry ingredients in the bowl. Stir it together until
everything is covered. Spoon the mixture onto parchment, wax paper, or
aluminum foil, and let cool.

gobstuff archive
at E.W.M.–a well of alimentary delights–would not be
complete (nor ready for The Food Network to sponsor) without this recipe in it.

Poco de Pica

During the summer of ’00, I spent six weeks in Xalapa, Veracruzana, studying language and culture at the Universidad de Veracruzana while on excursion from UMKC, the institution from which I took my MA in Aughtgust of aught-aught (language requirement completed). Typical arrangements: in pairs, students were matched with families. I lived with a family on the south side of Xalapa, maybe two miles from the Universidad’s space near the central district; out the family’s dining room windows, we looked toward Orizaba during most morning and evening meals.

Continue reading →

Notes from the Kitchen

Two gripes from the a.m.:
1. Separating the cheap coffee filters I bought recently requires an micro-beam
laser. Not that I could hold the device steady if I had one. I had
Is. in one arm while trying to pull away a single filter for what must have been
ten minutes. Like youthfulness, my dexterity is diminishing at an alarming
rate. Is. probably thought it was some kind of early morning game where I just
fiddle around with coffee filters for the pure pleasure in it (the crinkling,
the one-finger edge-brush, the sighs and grumping).
2. The wedge-dividing membranes in the naval oranges I bought Sunday at
P&C are far more chewy, thick, and pulpy than I could’ve imagined even in my
worse nightmares about eating oranges. Eating one danged orange wedge requires
more jaw work than mowing ten pieces of Super Bubble for half a day. Without removing the wrappers! Plain nasty, and with a thick, clingy albedo (I had to pull McPhee’s Oranges
from the shelf to remember what it was called, the white rind-like stuff…hate
it, even if it’s high in nutrients).

Continue reading →


Sugar depressed? Down in the right-eating caloric dumps?
Suffering from post-holidaysal dietary balance? Worry not! Today is Peanut
Butter Pie Friday.

Peanut Butter Pie

Okay, so you get the picture. I cooked up a pair of delightfully
peanut-buttery PB pies a few minutes ago, working from a recipe given to me by a
co-worker in the gig I was working nine years ago. The conversation went
approximately as follows: D: That PB pie is really good. Co-worker: Want
the recipe? D: Okay, why not.

I have not had the peanut butter pie since. Not this peanut butter pie
nor any other. Not one time.

Continue reading →

Eat Your Rhizomes

I’m fairly competent with the pureed soups, and so I try to mix one up every
now and again, especially when D. or Ph. mention it (and it’s also my week for
meals). Today it was a finely blended
Rhizome (aka, Sweet Potato
Carrot Ginger) Soup garnished with chopped honey roasted peanuts and set
alongside thin-sliced sourdough from Panera. It’s really a fortunate accident of
fate that I can cook much of anything (i.e., lots of kitchen time as a kid), but
this one turned out okay. Edible-plus.

Continue reading →

Meal Ideas

Figures that the last week of July would be my week for groceries. I’m
heading to the store in a few minutes, until then, preparing mentally for the
mealy week ahead. Here’s what I’ve got so far:

Day One (Monday): Ph. has a soccer match at 7:15. In the mosquito
hatchery that doubles as Wetlands Soccer Park. IOW, we’ll be the dinner.
Home by 9. Actual dinner: microwave popcorn with popsicles for dessert (only if it’s a win).
Day Two: Our third wedding anniversary. Celebrating a superfine three years. D.
and I eat at a respectable restaurant, while Ph. sits at home, playing PS2 and
eating graham crackers (relax, they’re honey graham crackers).
Day Three and Four: Where have the appetites gone? Y. (who reminds me more and
more of a junkyard Snoopy) is still sick. Poor lil’ guy. But damn! Nobody’s
Day Five: Creamed corn casserole. Too hot to bake, so I put the microwave
to work. And work. it. does. Which is more than we can say for the washing
machine or dishwasher. Hey Maytag, are we unlucky or should these rusty
&^% appliance go to the scrap-heap?
Day Six: Nearing expirations on the many milks in the refrigerator. Dinner
idea: dairy consumption contest. Vanilla soy milk, 2%, skim. Oh, and why
not: yogurt, sour cream, half-n-half and cottage cheese.
Day Seven: It’s the end of my week, which saddens me just a little bit.
For a mood-lift, we splurge on double-toasted everything bagels and cokes (Coke
floats if I pick up some ice cream).

For breakfasts: Cinnamon Life, wheat germ and PB toast.

I’m gone to the store.