Monday, February 13, 2012

Valentine's Day FoodieFest

Because I am a naturally curvy woman, I don't get to eat whatever I want. In fact, almost every bite that goes into my mouth is heavily monitored and let me tell you a story: It freaking sucks.

So with Valentine's Day here, I am going to paint a little picture of love for you fine folks. A love letter, really, to all the foods I love. And by love, I mean LOVE. With drool and excitement and a heart all a-twitter. Now don't get me wrong, whatever you do. While these are foods that I LOVE, they are foods that I generally never get to eat. I practically live on vegetables and lean protein, and I am not a gluten-eater. So as for my food loves? Consider it a long-distance relationship.


Let's start with my friend steak. And not just any steak, but a steak cooked to perfection. A robust and blood medium rare, the way steak should be. It's an insult to cows everywhere to prepare beef any other way.

My husband has developed a very important survival skill in being married to me. He knows when to hold em, when to fold em, and when to stop at Giovanni's and buy his woman a lobster tail. This little pastry right here can break the staunchest of grudges, melting my icy heart with its creamy center and chewy/crunchy/chewy/crunchy pastry shell.

My children are not as enamored of their dad walking through the door with that beautiful white bakery box because they know I am not at all going to share. Nope.

But if we are going to talk about favorite treats, let;s not overlook the sublime tanginess of the perfect slice of key lime pie. But be careful -- know your baker. I once had a piece at a diner that tasted so bad and so disappointing I threw a tantrum right there at the red vinyl booth. Accept no prisoners, people.

Sigh. I almost don't know where to start with this one. First of all, pardon me for a sec while I grab the Windex and a paper towel because I just licked my laptop.

If you have never had the pleasure of an Amato's Italian in the great state of Maine, get your ass in a car and drive to the Vacation State RIGHT NOW. You can get one anywhere in Maine, but as soon as you cross the border you are shit out of luck.

This is one of the few foods that makes me hum, sing and shout while I am eating it. I suppose you could call it comfort food, for me, since I grew up the middle child of two Mainer parents who delighted in my pure joy at eating something from their heritage. Call it what you will, but go get yourself one of these culinary marvels and bring me one while you're at it.

I know, I know. You can put them on a shelf for 769 years and they look the same. It isn't food. I am well aware. I read The Omnivore's Dilemma! I saw Food, Inc! I am an educated woman!!

But I love me some McDonald's cheeseburgers. Yes I do.

Who can't resist the oozy charms of a grilled cheese sandwich? No matter what you do or do not have in your fridge or cupboard, there is almost always the possibility of grilled cheese. I love it alone, I love it dipped in Progresso Chickarina soup, or swiping chili off the sides of a bowl. Tomato soup? Corn chowder? Why the hell not! YAY!!!!!!!

The gluten-sensitive side of me is cringing at how happy it makes me to write about all these bread products, but it actually feels something like satisfaction just to look at them. Sort of.

Okay, not really.

Ahh, seafood. I do love you. As for fish n chips, it's sort of like the slutty little sister of real seafood. But it's greasy and salty and decadent in its own way. When given the chance, if you are eating a dish like this in my company, I will tell you to look out the window and stealthily grab a bite while you are not looking.

Mmmmmm. Here's one I can't live without: fried dumplings. I will eat 4 cups of steamed broccoli while my family eats normal Chinese food takeout, but I make them save me a dumpling. It's a little pocket of gingery love, from me to me.

And now we have come to my favorite food of all, and the one I try hardest to stay away from: LIQUID DINNER! Gimlets, Manhattans, shots of chilled Campari. I look forward to the day I am a wrinkly old woman in the nursing home and everyone just says "let her be -- she's lived a good life" and I can just wake up in the morning and start pourin'.

Until then, I have a life to live and I have to function in the real world. But my 90th birthday is going to be a goddam festival of liver disease, believe me. And it won't stop until I reach that magical open bar in the sky.


  1. So great. I eat the slutty sister of all food groups. Always.

  2. Geesus, now I want a medium rare steak and nothing else.