happy birthday, Ian!

happy birthday, Ian!

I designed this e-card for you.

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A very NOLA Thanksgiving

entirely homemade, fueled by alcohol.

Mandatory Roast Turkey & Gravy

Satsuma Cranberry Sauce with Grand Marnier and Candied Ginger

LA Oyster and Oyster Mushroom Stuffing with Granny Smith Apple and Shallot

Mashed Potatoes with Herbs de Provence

Spinach Gnudi with Parmigiano Reggiano and Poultry Spices

“Secret Recipe” Sweet Potatoes

Sauteed Green Beans and Garlic Almonds

Poppy and Sesame Seed Onion Bread

Mirlitons (or Chayotes) Stuffed with LA Crabmeat and Shrimp

Butternut Squash Stuffed with Wild Mushroom, Wild Rice, and Feta

Roast Pumpkin Cheesecake with Brown Butter Pears

Yeah, we like stuffing things.

Best Holiday Greeting Ever

drunk and hungry?

My friend Alex over at Eater New Orleans put together a great map of places to grab a bite to follow all that chugging.

The 15 Spots for the Best Drunk Food in New Orleans

Guilty pleasure? Go spicy.

Anyone familiar with me knows I don’t believe in “diet” or “healthy” versions of food… unless you find they actually taste better to you than the original. (Not even “as good as” but better!) Fortunately for me, I love spicy food. So if you’re going to indulge in junk food or fast food, check if your favorite guilty pleasure has a spicy version.

Ounce for ounce, the spicy alternate always has fewer calories and less sodium, carbohydrates, and fat. (Let’s face it: Salt, sugar, and butter/lard are easy ways to add flavor. Spice is a guilt-free way.)  This leaves more room for protein and fiber. As an added bonus, all that capsaicin may curb your appetite or at least compel you to eat slower. The foods still might not be healthy, but at least you’ll eat them in a healthier way.

Just as an example, here’s some nutritional info from probably my favorite guilty pleasure.

Love dat chicken!Photo courtesy of Popeyes

Mild Chicken Thigh Spicy Chicken Thigh
Calories

280

260

Sodium (mg)

640

460

Fat (g)

21

18

Protein (g)

14

14

Carbs (g)

8

7

Fiber (g)

1

1

Gin Fitzgerald

So I went to Art for Art’s Sake yesterday and was pleased to discover the official cocktail for the event was a Gin Fitzgerald. I’m not a huge gin drinker–I usually opt for whiskey or vodka when it comes to liquor. But I do think gin is heavily underrated. It’s in classic (i.e. real) martinis. It’s like vodka’s more sophisticated cousin. But for some reason, lots of people seem opposed to it.

Anyway, I hadn’t had a Gin Fitzgerald before. It was described to me by the bartender as “lemonade with gin and bitters.” Being a fan of bitters (and a bigger fan of F. Scott Fitzgerald), I liked the drink, which tasted like a Tom Collins but more balanced. So balanced in fact I asked the friend I was with to try it and confirm it had alcohol in it. She said it “definitely” did, so my inability to detect it may be correlated to the imbibing we did the night/morning before.

Anyway I made sure to look up the recipe when I got home. It’s by King Cocktail himself, Dale DeGroff. Apparently it’s just called a Fitzgerald. (I guess the Gin was there to warn any of the aforementioned people who dislike gin.)

Photo courtesy of sugarhousedetroit.com

Fitzgerald

  • 1.5 oz (42 grams) dry gin
  • 0.75 oz (21 grams) lemon juice
  • 0.75 oz (21 grams) simple syrup
  • 2 dashes Angostura Bitters

Shake all ingredients with ice. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass or a rocks glass with fresh ice. Garnish with a lemon peel.

Here we go again…

“Blogging is not writing. It’s just graffiti with punctuation.”

– Dr. Ian Sussman, Moneyball

No, dear carabinieri, I will not have this washed away in fifteen minutes.