Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Food Faux Pas

Hi, my name is Jessica Halliday, and I am a food snob.  And damn proud of it.  It's not easy being a food snob.  I snub my nose up to chain restaurants, electric stoves, canned foods like chili, bagged meats like pot roast.  I realize that a mother of 3 with a full-time job (hell, just a mother of 1 alone) will often choose convenience over freshness.  But since I am not a mother of 3, nor do I have a full-time job, I can say all this stuff and not feel the least bit guilty about it!  Because I am a Bitch 'n the Kitchen, and that's how I do.

Last night, I was at my beautiful friend Natalie's house, watching her cook dinner.  Now I love me some Natalie, but I had to scold her on few of the items she had in her fridge.  And here they are:

I realize this is convenient.  But if you've ever cooked with this garlic, you MUST taste the bitterness of it.  It just doesn't have the right garlicky taste that I love so much!  It doesn't even smell right. How hard is it to buy some garlic and mince it up?  You can even do it with one of those handy garlic presses so you don't smell like garlic all day (though I prefer that to any perfume).

Here was my next annoyance:
Yep.  Margarine.  It's not THAT much better for you, yet tastes THAT much unlike the real deal...Butter.  Butter is just better, people.  There's no denying it.  I sometimes use butter as lip gloss when I'm out!  (I'm not kidding). Name a noted chef that uses Margarine and I'll eat an entire stick of that crap.

Which brings me to my next jar of crap. 

I'm sorry, but I don't eat anything that is drowning in urine.  Try these instead, you can find them by the lunch meat in your grocery store. 

And finally, this (which Natalie pointed out to me, so she may have a little food snob in her too):

Grate your own Parmesan cheese.  It will taste SOOOOO much better!  And in the end, it will save you SOOO much money.

Now, I have to say, regardless of her few bad choices at the grocery store.  Natalie did make a mean ass pasta dinner.

Just like my ancestors (in another life) would have made.  I swear I was Italian in a past life. 

So there you have it.  Some of the many things I am a food snob about.  What are you a food snob about??

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Just Sayin...

If you have one of these in your fridge and/or cabinet....we can no longer be friends.  Go buy a friggin' lemon for cryin' out loud.

Photo from Google Images

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Pleaser Caesar

So lately I've been eating a lot of salad for lunch.  Trying to keep this 34-year-old girlish figure, ya know?  Somebody's got to keep up with that bitch Reese Witherspoon.  (Just kiddin' Reesie know I love you, especially in that movie Freeway).

Mr. Caesar Salad.  Oh, Mr. Caesar Salad.  If you only could be good everywhere I order you.  I've had my share of horrific Caesar Salads.  Soggy breadcrumbs, wilted Romaine, drowning in dressing that tastes straight out of a jar, chicken that is directly out of the freezer, microwaved, and is questionable on whether or not it's really even chicken.  I've had a lot of depressing lunch dates with Mr. Caesar.  So the other day when I was craving one, I decided to not be stood up by that bastard of a salad anymore.  I was going to make my own, one that was a perfect match, like Weird Science.  Here's what I did:
I bought some REAL chicken breasts from the store.  Chicken that may have at one time been frozen, but wasn't when I bought it.  Don't trust any other chicken.  I then beat the crap out of said chicken breast because I was having a bad day.  Not really...I just wanted it to cook quickly, so I took my meat mallet (giggity) to it to thin it out a little.  I then seasoned it with salt & pepper and garlic powder.  Then I cooked it in olive oil on medium high for about 4 minutes per side.  When it was finished, I put it on a plate to let it chill while I made the salad.

In my food processor, I put (ok, pardon the measurements) about a tablespoon of Dijon mustard, another tablespoon of anchovy paste, 3 cloves of chopped garlic, the juice from 1/2 a lemon (you can add more or less depending on how much you like lemon), a splash of Worcestershire sauce, 1 raw egg yolk and salt and pepper.  Then you turn that sucker on high and drizzle in a stream of olive oil (a good one, not something you bought for $4), about 1/4 to 1/2 a cup until it starts to emulsify (which is just a fancy term for coming together, you'll know when it's right).

Taste it and add lemon or salt or pepper or more garlic, whatever it needs to taste good to you.  Cooking is all about what YOU like.  And how hard can that be?  Add the dressing to some clean, chopped Romaine (grilled Romaine is even better, try it sometime) and add in your own, or some sort of bagged/boxed crouton that you like.  Cut up the chicken and there you have it.  A Caesar good enough to take home to your mom and dad.