Office S’Mores
Dec 8th, 2009 by plumpdumpling

Fun things to do after hours at the office when you’re hungry:

1) Grab two space heaters and place them on the floor, facing one another.

2) Find a random metal rod on a nearby desk that may or may not be used to itch someone’s butt.

3) Procure leftover ghost-shaped Halloween marshmallows from the candy bowl at the reception desk. (Note that though marshmallows are orange and brown and may appear to be flavored, they are, in fact, just like white marshmallows.)

4) Stab the leftover ghost-shaped Halloween marshmallows with the random metal rod.

5) Hold the marshmallows between the opposing heaters for ten minutes.

6) Grow anxious and pop the metal grate off of one heater so as to get the marshmallows closer to the heat source.

7) Rejoice as the marshmallows actually brown within moments.

8.) Steal a package of totally-savory-and-not-at-all-appropriate-for-s’mores Melba toast off of a co-worker’s desk in the absence of graham crackers.

9) Melt a Tootsie Roll in the microwave in the absence of a chocolate bar.

10) Top Melta toast with Tootsie Roll and heater-browned marshmallow.

11) Savor your fake s’more like nobody’s ever savored a fake s’more before.

12) Feel a little bit bad about yourself for being pathetic.

13) But mostly just feel awesome.

Pretzel + Hot Dog = Pretzel Dog
Sep 23rd, 2009 by plumpdumpling

It’s an Auntie Anne’s pretzel wrapped around a Nathan’s hot dog, and I ate it at the airport, which is really the only place you should be able to find a hot dog wrapped in a pretzel. This one only had 310 calories and 20 grams of fat, so I can’t wait to find a place that sells the JUMBO pretzel dog so I can get the full 600-calorie experience.

I will be dipping that one in cheese sauce and wrapping a slice of pizza around each bite, justyouwaitandsee.

Fishies with Their Skin Still on
Aug 29th, 2009 by plumpdumpling

I ate sardines prepared three ways tonight.

Please don’t let this change the way you feel about me. Even if it changes the way I feel about myself.

An Ugli Fruit and an Ugly Mug
Aug 21st, 2009 by plumpdumpling

My boyfriend has been visiting his family in California all week, and I was thinking this morning about how much I missed him. But then I found this photo:

Ugli Fruit

It may be pronounced OO-glee, but this grapefruit/orange/tangerine hybrid from Jamaica is about as pretty as Kamran’s face right there. We didn’t buy the fruit that night in Whole Foods, and honestly, I’m surprised I didn’t leave him there with it.

(xoxo, Kam.)

Otafuku’s Okonomiyaki in NYC
Jun 24th, 2009 by plumpdumpling

The New York magazine review of Otafuku says, “It’s very rare to find this stuff in New York. Consider yourself lucky.” Similarly, my boyfriend has been going on about this place for the entire nearly-three years I’ve known him. He went there on a date with a girl before my time and claims that while the date sucked, the food was life-changing. I don’t actually believe him about the date, but I was at least interested in the food.

Otafuku is not a restaurant. It’s a hallway divided in two by a counter, with men cooking on one side and customers ordering on the other. There’s enough room for four people to line up inside to place their orders, and after getting a receipt with a number on it, everyone goes to stand around outside. The pub next door has outdoor garden seating where people are reclining and relaxing, but Otafuku customers get nothing but a single, constantly-full two-seater bench out front. But no one’s complaining.

I don’t like the fruits of the sea, but Kamran tried to sell me on the fact that this is basically junk food, and I’ll admit that I bought it a little bit. There are three things on the menu here:

• Okonomiyaki: a pile of cabbage and batter molded into the shape of a pancake, fried with scallion and ginger, topped with squid, shrimp, pork, beef, or corn, and covered in okonomiyaki sauce, mayonnaise, and seaweed.

• Takoyaki: savory doughnut holes!, covered in okonomiyaki sauce and mayonnaise!, with a chunk of octopus, a squirt of cheese, or nothing inside, and bonito flakes (dried, fermented, and smoked tuna) on top.

• Yakisoba: fried noodles not worth talking about because there’s no batter involved.

I was especially down with the Japanese junk food when I was able to order the okonomiyaki with pork instead of squid, but the cashier told us they were too busy to make anything but the octopus takoyaki, so I let Kamran get that with the promise that I’d try one of the six dough balls. Twenty minutes later, we were standing outside with our friends and a crowd of other hungry customers when the cook yelled our number out the window and everyone else repeated it until we came forward.

We took our treats to the yard of St. Mark’s Church on 10th St. and dug in. The okonomiyaki tastes pretty much exactly how you expect it to–like fried cabbage, ginger, bacon, BBQ sauce, and mayo. Only it’s not like eating heavy American junk food that makes your pores oil up and your stomach bloat; with this stuff, you somehow feel as if you’ve just eaten something healthy. If you like the taste of cabbage, this thing will totally delight you. If you don’t, get it anyway and peel the pork off the top, because you can’t go wrong with bacon and BBQ sauce.

You don’t feel healthy with the takoyaki. It’s seriously a mouthful of soft, chewy doughnut. And not a fluffy doughnut, either, but an extremely dense one. Despite the fact that I’ve had takoyaki before with little squeamishness, I made Kamran eat the chunk of octopus from mine so I could have just the slightly-fishy shell. Back when I had takoyaki the first time, Kamran had been force-feeding me all sorts of fish to try to acclimate me, but he’s let his efforts slacken lately, and I’m back to being weirded out by seafood. I can’t imagine how good that little ball of fried dough would’ve been had it been filled with cheese.

This isn’t anywhere close to American comfort food, but it was a great experience, and I do consider myself lucky for having tried it, as New York magazine said I should. It was lots of interesting food at a great price, and not having a place to sit down with it was half the fun.

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