Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Things That Don't Suck

My taster's still off. I'm eating and enjoying a wide range of odd things, but mostly they're home cooked items resembling items my mom used to make for me when I was a picky little eater (Mexican pizza: hamburger meat on a fried tortilla topped with cheddar cheese. Oh, how far we have fallen.) Well, it's either been that or Dan Dan Noodles from Little Szechuan by the boatload. I could eat an order of these with every meal and die a happy woman.

So, how 'bout you guys? Everybody make it through the holidays? Any bruised foreheads from misplaced fruitcakes or noisemaker induced hearing loss?
It seems like everyone around me is back at work, back to the salt mines and trapped under oppressive mid-winter blues. I'm so beyond my assault threats on Jim Kramer that I'm now just firing spitballs at the TV. Blah weather, work and money woes.

I'm going to try to take a cue from my mother, Minnesota's resident Miss Mary Sunshine and see if I can't spin some good out of things going on around me, rather than sulk that I don't have the money to go out and eat and even if I did - my palate is not currently to be trusted.

Instead of resolutions, I give you my list of things that don't suck right now.

1.) Bacon - nuff said. The St. Paul Farmer's Market is still going strong during these blustery months. Do yourself a favor and drag yourself down there some Saturday morning. The Bar 5 Farms bacon is heaven. There's also a new indoor space across the street. There awaits you warm coffee and giant Cinnamon rolls, which definitely do not suck.

2.) The Winter Carnival is coming. Granted - I almost never go. Last year Matt dragged me and I tried tater tot hotdish for the first time. It was actually kinda good! Plus, inevitably, it's almost always the warmest week in January because the snow sculptures always seem to melt before I get to see them.

3.) Chilly weather means that I can put the garbage out in our mudroom and wait until Matt gets back from Spam country to take it all the way to the garbage can by the garage. Garbage doesn't rot when it's frozen!

4.) Erbert & Gerbert's delivery. Although they've proven to be much less than "freakishly fast," they are quite tasty and eventually deliver to my place of business in downtown Minneapolis. They've got this all veggie sandwich that has avocado, provolone cheese and a healthy slathering of Hellman's mayo. God bless the fat packed veggie option.

5.) Birthdays. Laura's is this Saturday and she rocks. Plus - this gives me something to do! I might even be forced to stay up past 9pm. Better yet - she's having a few friends gather at the home of the original Ping Pang OW! wings. I'll be sure to take pictures.

6.) I can legitimately rock my stretch pants and no one can say anything because I'm pregnant and pregnant ladies get to wear giant stretchy pants! I am rotund! Gawk at my jiggly behind! I am creator of LIFE! Mwa ha ha ha!! Included in this are other pregnancy related things such as - no one says, "You're going back to the buffet line again?" or "Doritos for breakfast? Really?" Yes, really. And while you're at it - where is the prime rib? Yorkshire pudding? I'm HUNGRY over here!

7.) Meritage in downtown St. Paul. I was lucky enough that while dining there on my birthday a photographer from one of the local papers was taking pictures for their Year in Food issue. Guess who got - for FREE - the dishes that he'd photographed? That's right. Me. I shared with Matt, but mostly it was me. I ended up having four entrees for the price of one that night. The servers were a dream and the food was heavenly. It's a fantastic spot for a romantic date night. You should go.

8.) A perfectly fried egg. I take mine over easy. It's even better if you'll listen to me and go to that Farmer's Market - get some local just gathered eggs. It's so simple. Just a little pat of butter, cracked open egg, flipped and dusted with salt and pepper. I like to have mine over a piece of lightly toasted bread. When the knife pierces the milky white exterior and the golden yolk bubbles forth, spilling onto the crispy toast creating that first sodden bite of creamy heaven, that is true beauty my friends.

9.) Morrelli's Market. While I may be stuck on Dry Island for a while longer, I know it won't be forever. The wine and booze prices they have are insanely cheap. Want to know my favorite way to deal with a bad economy? Relief is spelled H-e-n-d-r-i-c-k's. Chilled martini glass, Hendrick's ever so light juniper lilt garnished with a slice of cucumber or a sliver-thin twist of lime. Enjoy. Or, if you're wagon bound like me - grab some food! I don't know what the deal is with this place, but it's one of the very few - if not only places in Minnesota where you can find a deli and a liquor store sharing a space. Last weekend we tried two of their house made frozen pizzas. For the price of a Tombstone we got a thin crust covered in their Italian spiced tomato sauce and real mozzarella cheese. The oven was coated in the fried gooey tendrils that had escaped during the cooking process. Before our movie was over both were gone. I can tell you the sausage and pepperoni was good, but the basic cheese just sang. (So did I. This all went down while watching Hamlet 2. High brow evening. Rock Me Sexy Jesus got stuck in my head. I rationalized that the baby books do say you should sing to your baby in utero.)

10.) My husband. I know - it's not exactly food related or a cohesive ending to a rambling top 10 list, but I gotta say it. The man rocks hardcore. He's been the retriever of weird food requests and the builder of awesome fudge sundaes. He's the cheese to my macaroni.

I hope you guys all have some bits of happiness to hold on to right now. I know it can't all be as bad as it seems, right? It's not like there's a looming alien ship over all our major cities. (Or minor cities - Oh no! Not McGregor!!) We're gonna make it out of this. Spring will come soon enough and with it flowers, sunshine, a better outlook on all things money related. Plus, I'll be able to drink again!


At 9:00 AM , Blogger andy said...

Amen to the Morelli's nod. Not only is it amazingly close to the family furniture store on Payne, but it provided the most glorious beef tenderloin for the Birchwood Christmas this year. (Oh, and I also went to Mexico with Jammi, the owner's wife. She rocks.)

As a side note, you hadn't had tatertot hotdish until last year? My out-of-state college friends nearly passed out at the first taste of it when my mom made it years ago. You never cease to amaze me. :)

At 12:06 PM , Anonymous J.Lo said...

She lives! She breathes! She eats! Gosh, it's been awhile. With all my busy-ness at work, at least now you have time to blog.

My birthday at Azia was awesome - for the 22 minutes you were there. At least Andy rallied! And Matt even showed up representin' the 651.


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