Friday, January 27, 2006

The power of peas compels you!

I am unduly frightened of pale, red-haired children, but I am absolutely freaked out by this image of little demon child working her voodoo magic on the whole milk and peas, plotting to subversively bring the American people to the altar of Satan through spells that makes them inexplicably crave canned foods.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Come to the Buttered Side

or ...

Use the Toast ...

And there it is: the actual background image on Ladygoat's desktop ... Darth Vader carved out of butter.

May the butter be with you. May you use the butter well.

See? The entire Star Wars saga would have been just as compelling (dare I say, even more so?) had they substituted "the Butter" for "The Force". I know that's what they were thinking about.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Real Men Don't Eat Cake

Some foods, it's true, can be embarrassing. Beans can induce unwanted embarrassing bodily functions, for example. A not-quite-screwed-in salt shaker cap can produce a moment of mortification. And that piece of spinach often colludes with the teeth at the worst possible moments.

But cake? What's so embarrassing about eating cake?

Apparently men in Japan are so embarrassed about being seen eating cake that one bakery aims to solve the problem by disguising cakes as fast food.

Frankly, I'd be more embarrassed to be seen eating fast food that eating cake. But I'm not a guy, and I'm not Japanese, so you can't go by me.

Friday, January 20, 2006

I sort of want it. Does that make me bad?

Knife storage seems to bring out the evil in designers. Would it be bad karma to have this latest model in my kitchen? What about if I had shaped as a particular person's head? Nominees, anyone?

Wednesday, January 18, 2006


For months, I've been fiddling with my tea methods and tools, searching for the ideal teapot and the perfect seeping tool. The tea press we had until recently was great - good size, abundant room for loose teas - except that it was made of glass and couldn't retain heat, and like all our glass items, eventually broke into pieces. The tetsubin I have now is great - cast iron so it keeps heat well and definitely won't break, and looks so snazzy - except that it was way too tiny. The ceramic teapot I use is great - nice and big for a whole night worth of tea - except that the top is too small and will not fit any buy the smallest of tea balls. And I like my tea strong.

But now I've seen the Staub La Theiere, and I'm drooling. A big cast iron tea kettle and teapot, together! With a wide top to use my giant tea ball and all the loose tea I want! And so pretty too!

I wonder how long I can go before convincing myself that I really, really need a $50 tea pot?

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Vanilla FTW!

When Silk called their new kid-friendly soy milk flavor "Very Vanilla" ... they really meant that VERY vanilla.

Damn, that's powerful stuff.

Foodgoat has been mixing it into his regular cow milk for an instant milkshake-like drink.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

A Ladygoat PostSecret

Foodgoat thought I was being very nice by leaving him some doughnuts for breakfast this morning, but what he doesn't know is that he was also supposed to get the Cherry Cake doughnut. But I took it for myself. And my greed was punished. Because when I bit into the crispy Cherry Cake doughnut, I found a wet, runny, un-cooked center.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Imagine my surprise when I asked for chamomile tea, which I'd never had before, at the loose tea store, and I got a pile of what looked like - and what was - dried flowers.

This is something I wouldn't know if I still used tea bags. Sure they're convenient, but the chamomile would be hidden inside bleached paper and probably squashed besides. But with loose tea, you suddenly realized what you're drinking: hot plant water.

In the case of chamomile tea it's hot plant water that tasted a little like apples. Very soothing and pleasant. I tried it for its medicinal qualities (it's supposed to be detoxifying as well as relaxing and antispasmodic), but I made more just because it tasted yummy. Very cold winter night-ish.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

I Love I Love Lucy

How did we live in the long cold days before Google?

Having recently discovered the fun that is Google Video (where else can one find Chinese teenagers lip syncing to the Backstreet Boys and the infamous Leeeee-roy of WoW?), I would be remiss not to post a link to the best bargain on the new Google Video Store - the Job Switching episode of I Love Lucy!

You know the one ... the boys try to cook chicken and rice ("Does 4 pounds of rice sound like enough, Fred?"), and the girls get a job in the chocolate factory. For only $1.99 you can have that candy stuffing scene to replay over and over.

Lots of Lucy's best moments involved food and drink of some kind ... think Vitameatavegamin, think grape stomping, think Aunt Martha's Old-Fashioned Salad Dressing. Because food is funny, especially when being stuffed into someone's face at a rapid pace.

Saturday, January 7, 2006

What I Learned from New Year's Eve 2005

What's New Year's Eve without a plastic champagne glass filled with something fizzy? Plain old Dec. 31st. So I picked up some Freixenet Brut (already chilled! and only $6.99!) and some sparkling cider and got ready to toast 2006.

I've had Freixenet before, and I thought I remembered it being okay. Apparently memory deceives me, because that cheap stuff tasted, well, not so good. Downright crappy, in fact. Not even diluting it with generic 7-Up, which rescued a blah Zinfadel earlier in the night, made it any more palatable. We ended up dumping the stuff and guzzling the good old reliable sparkling cider.

The lesson is that really cheap champagne usually tastes like really cheap champagne. Spring for the good stuff!

The second thing I learned from New Year's Eve 2005: Hilary Duff's songs are kind of lame.

Friday, January 6, 2006

my new favorite grocery store

I had a single, solitary moment of deep distress this holiday season, when I thought I had left in California my three packages of languanisa that I wanted to bring back to Ohio. O, the disappointment! I have yet to find a really good brand of the sweet, succulent Filipino sausage that is available in Ohio, and I thought I'd have to suffer through several more months of deprivation, while California Filipinos revelled in easy availability of fatty yumminess.

Fortunately, it turned out they were in my suitcase after all, and three packages in my family's freezer seemed to be a backup. In other words, all is well.

Languanisa is easy to come by because there are several Filipino stores and Asian markets in the vicinity of my hometown (the city, incidentally, where a policeman was recently attacked by vicious dogs ... itty bitty vicious dogs).

But the new favorite is Island Pacific, a small chain of Filipino groceries. It's not a small, dark mom and pop shop, but a great big bright supermarket, stocked with all the Filipino brands we need, crisp Asian vegetables, and a fish section that runs the entire width of the store. Not to mention the Filipino/Chinese restaurant (with lechon!) and the Filipino bakery pumping out the scent of freshly baked pan de sal inside. Where else can I find three different brands (and sizes!) of calamansi concentrate?

Not Cleveland, I'll tell you that.