Wednesday, May 22, 2013

What the World Eats

In the past couple months, the appetites of my kids, who are all of 50 lbs between the two of them, seem to have increased exponentially.  Where a loaf of bread and a gallon of milk was once good for a week, and a dozen eggs could last weeks, now I need two or three loaves of bread and a dozen eggs and three gallons of milk every single week.  And so. much. cream. cheese.

Which is why I've been a little preoccupied lately with monthly food budgets and consumption, and why I particularly enjoyed the photo album What the World Eats (also a book) of families in various countries surrounded by their weekly food purchases along with how much they spend. 

What I noticed:
  • Almost everyone eats bananas.   And carrots.
  • I am alarmed that the family from Mali is really big, and those bags of grain aren't really enough.  
  • Packaging seems to be a big part of the Japanese family's food.  Even the bananas are packaged.
  • That's a lot of Coke to drink in a week, Mexican family.
  • The Ecuadoran family looks super stylish in those hats.
  • Ritz crackers and Lays potato chips cross country lines.
  • Goodness, families all over the world eat a lot of eggs in a week.
  • Why so much baking soda, Italian family?  But I do love all the bread.
  • Nice to see so much beer front and center of the German family food table.
  • Do all Quebec families have Toblerone every week?  I would. 
  • Is that Kraft Mac and Cheese over in Kuwait? 
  • So surprised that so many people buy bottled water. 
I'm not sure which one is closest to what we eat.   Our photo would have a piles of pasta.  And gallons of milk.  Some vegetables, especially in the summer but less so in the winter.  But always a lot of cheese - cheddar, mozzarella (fresh and regular!), Parmesan.   And yes, Ritz crackers.  At least when I am shopping. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Did Not Expect to See This at Target

First reaction:  Is that mango juice?
Second reaction:  The Philippines brand??
Third reaction:  For real?
Fourth reaction:  On sale???
Fifth reaction:  Am I still in Cleveland?

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Worst Cheese in the World Meets the Worst Bread in the World

It all came together in SuperPretzel Softstix, cheese filled soft pretzel sticks.

I knew it would be bad, but I was unprepared for how bad they really were.  The worst part was that they had not sufficiently warmed up in the oven in the time indicated by the package, so the first one I tried was warmish on the outiside, but cold on the inside.  Fake-ish cheese really needs to be hot to be palatable.  It really, really does.
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How to Screw Up Muffins

Muffins are so forgiving to bake.  But they can be screwed up.  Here's how I did it!
  • Use raspberries that have been in your freezer for ... no one really knows how long.  
  • Over-oil the muffin pan.  Be super sloppy about it so that oil drips out of the muffin pan during baking.
  • Pull muffins out midway because there is an alarming amount of smoke coming out of your oven.
  •  Leave the half-baked muffins out while you try to clean a hot oven and wipe off the residual oil all around the pan.
  • Put the half-baked muffins back in the oven an hour later.
  • Take them out when done.  Observe how they turned green.  Note how they taste really weird.