Saturday, June 30, 2007


How to Drink for Free In Los Angeles

Guess what my dears!

It's the first weekend of the month!

And do you have any idea what that means?

Open Houses! AKA - Free drink night at all the local (and there are many, I assure you...) Los Angeles art galleries!

Because I don't just like food, I like art...and drinking for free...

So if you want to start out this hot summer night by combining art viewing with getting your drink on, you too can join the fray; at locations such as Bergamot Station (Where one of my favorite artists, Jeff Gillette has a group show this month!) or the impressive Culver City Art Walk .

Or perhaps you want to pop by my glorious neighborhood, and visit the world famous Acme Gallery (and by my neighborhood, I mean, I live so close by, I actually fight these people for parking spots on a daily basis. And lemme tell ya, judging by the plethora of mase-arris and lambor-otus type vehicles, I think we are all in the wrong business...)

The galleries are usually open from 6-9 and as an incentive to have you cruise in, they offer incredibly cheap beer and wine on a first come first serve basis. That said, they also offer expensive art, to counter balance, I'm sure.

And by cheap beer and wine, I mean, "Hello Charles Shaw" and "How ya doin' Tecate?"

Though on occasion, a few other options are thrown in...(Sometimes new companies like to do sponsorship things, though it is inevitably a fruity vodka or an electric colored wine cooler...) in other words, the art may be interesting and conversational and whatnot, but the beverages are more of the "hey, lets get a quick buzz on" variety.

Just warning you is all.

So join the fun, check out some art (you may be surprised, there is usually some pretty great stuff.), mingle with the masses (who, this being LA, are not all dressed in black, but are still a bit on the "arty" side...this being art and all...just to warn you) and have a great night!

This being a food blog, I should also say that if you do end up at Acme, or its neighbors Milo or Weinberg, the dining options in the area are a bit limited (Sizzler anyone?) so you may want to head a few blocks south to Little Ethiopia, or just keep going east on Wilshire to Korea Town...

But if you are heading to Culver City, Fresh is a good option, as is Bottle Rock. Delightful spots. There are a ton more to choose from, of course, so I don't think you will have trouble.

For Santa Monica dining, I will refer you to Miss Sarah, who is so much more schooled in those matters.

Whatever you end up doing, I hope you have a rockin' good time. And remember the old saying...
Beer before liquor never felt sicker,
Liquor before wine, everythings fine,
Wine before...oh wait, I think that's wrong...lemme start that again...
Wine before beer never fear...

Oh wait, that's wrong too...okay, ignore me and just stick with being a responsible drinker!


Big kisses,


Andy Warhol first painted Cambell's Soup Cans in 1964.
British, European, and American beers differ markedly in flavor and content, but are brewed similarly. In the U.S., where the word beer is generally understood to mean lager beer (beer stored for a time before being sold), the beverage contains on the average 90 percent water, 3.5 percent alcohol by weight, 0.5 percent carbon dioxide, and 6 percent extractives consisting of proteins, carbohydrates, minerals, and aromatic flavorings. It is produced by bottom-fermenting yeasts, that is, yeasts that settle to the bottom, act slowly, and develop the brew at relatively low temperatures. -


Friday, June 29, 2007


Pineapple Fried Rice

Oh my GOSH! He did it to me again!

(Or maybe I did it to myself...whatever.)

So there I was in the market, in the middle of the day, cooing at the most angelic looking baby propped up in a cart smiling and looking adorable...a blond curls and pink cheeks...and as I turned away, the father turned back from the lettuce selection, smiled and said hi.

Him. Again.

My teenaged crush. (Meaning, the boy I had a crush on way back when.) Who throws me every time I see him. (This is a huge city, is it not? What the heck? I don't run into my family! I don't run into my friends. I don't run in to anyone! Except him. Freaky weirdness I tell ya.) He is just so...dreamy. (Which he probably isn't, by the way. I just can't shake that picture in my mind of him as a oh-so-cool 17 year old boy, just before he became some sort of It-Boy. Nowadays he is just an overly pretentious, aging hipster, but hey...that has its appeal to. I mean he was wearing sunglasses in the market for heavens sake. Worried one of the middle-aged moms might recognize him? Doubtful...)

And what did I do?

I stared. And my normally blank mind went that much blanker. And then I walked away. And I wandered around the market fondly recalling how cute his smile is and noting how his child really looks like its supermodel mother and I forgot the coconut milk, and because of that I had to have pineapple fried rice instead of coconut fried rice with the teriyaki chicken I made for dinner. Which was fine, but really not what I had planned. It's tasty though, and you should try it!

2 cups cooked white rice
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup minced red bell pepper
1/4 cup peas
3/4 cup diced pineapple
1 egg, beaten
1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon Asian sesame oil

Heat the oil in a wok or a large saute pan over medium heat. When oil just begins to smoke, stir-fry the garlic, about 1 minute. Crumble rice into wok along with the bell pepper and peas and stir-fry until lightly browned, 8 minutes.

Make a well in the center of the rice and add the egg. Scramle and stir into the rest of the rice.

Remove the pan from heat and the pineapple, soy sauce and sesame oil, tossing to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.

Makes six servings


According to Chinese food experts, fried rice is a specialty of Yangzhou. They do not attempt to put an exact date on the origin of this recipe. - Food Time

Sesame oil should be stored in the refrigerator

And now...a food haiku
Go to the Kitchen
Create a great tasting meal
Someone else clean up

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Wednesday, June 27, 2007


Sausage and Shallot Stuffed Mushrooms

It has come to my attention (because I have been paying attention you see) that the posts on this site rarely, if ever have anything to do with the accompanying recipe.


I mean, let's face the facts...not every event in life leads to a delicious meal (though wouldn't that be nice) and not every meal has a
great/mildly interesting/remotely readable story attached.

Heck. Sometimes, a girl just makes dinner.

Or has a cocktail snack.

Lil' nibbles if you will.

So I am implementing a new policy that may or may not stick.

From now on, I'm going to write some non-sense (in other words, that part is status quo) and then include a recipe. There may be a correlation, there may not. I'm going to stop worrying about it. Are you okay with that?

Who knows, it might be fun. Less pressure. (Um, cuz, you know, this site is too uptight as it is...)

So here goes...random babblings by a girl who cooks...

I joined a swim club. I tried to explain this to The Ombudsman, who mistook my comment to mean I had joined some sort of athletic group that meets at a pool. I mean really. The mear thought of it all (knowing me as he does) had him laughing so hard something akin to a snort occurred. And then another. It basically had the boy rolling on the floor.

What I had meant, of course was that I joined a club with a pool for the summer. So I can lounge in peace and get some rays without going to the gritty/grotty beach. Working out was not on my agenda. Laps and whatnot are not my thing. I wear bikinis. They aren't designed to actually stay on under exertion (or so I suspect, never having tried it.) they are for show. For show people.

All that transpired as we ate these mushrooms and downed yet another delightful Dark and Stormy (Note to self: must post about that...) and it was as I ate my third one that I realized he may have been on to something. What with my habit of eshewing real meals in favor of cocktails and requisite salty-fatty cocktail snacks, maybe I should have joined a more athletic group.

Hmmm. Food for thought.

6 medium portabellas mushroom caps (Trader Joes sells "Stuffing Caps" Clever people.)
1 shallot, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 teaspoons olive oil
3/4 cup bread crumbs
1 heaping tablespoon Parmesan cheese, grated
1 teaspoon dried herbs (oregano and thyme are nice)
2 thick slices of cooked sausage or salami, minced
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat your oven to 350F.

In a medium pan heat the oil and saute the shallot and garlic until softened. Add the rest of the ingredients, stir to combine and remove from the heat. The mixture should be moist, if not add a bit more oil. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.

Using a small spoon, scoop the gills out of the mushrooms. Lightly oil the tops of each mushroom. Fill each cap with the bread-crumb mixture. Don't pack it in, but make sure it isn't too loose either. The cap is going to shrink while it bakes after all.

Bake on a lined cookie sheet or in a dish, uncovered, for 15 minutes or until browned on top.

Remove from the oven, let cool slightly. Serve.

Makes six.


Look at how pretty a vegetarian version of these can be! Or how they look with spinach! Mmm.

More than 85% of Australian households purchase fresh mushrooms regularly; 55% of them boy at least once a week and 385 of primary grocery shoppers always have them on their shopping list.

In the mid 1970's most of the mushrooms eaten in Australia were in cans, today Australians eat 85% of their mushrooms fresh. -Australian


Tuesday, June 26, 2007


Shredded Duck with Figs and Rosemary

You know that part of your yoga class....just at the end, when you are lying peacefully on the mat in corpse pose (do yoga pose translations rock or what.), eyes closed, breathing regulated, trying to empty your mind?

Yea. Well, my mind is pretty empty usually anyway. No need to take it to extremes. So, to prevent myself from getting any ditzier, I instead focus on lunch. Or dinner. Or whatever meal is next I should say.

And there on my mat, like a nursery-schooler gone mad, I start to ponder the contents of my fridge. And how soon I can peel myself up off of the floor and go eat.

All that bending and stretching builds a girls appetite!

I really do enjoy a post yoga snack...

And this is what I indulged in today.

Lucky me, right?

Wanna join the fun?

Well, to do so, let's just pretend that you heeded my call way back when, about trying your hand at making Duck Legs in this manner, when plump and juicy figs came back onto the scene...that would make following along with this post that much easier...since you would have said duck legs on hand, and would be ready for the next step.

It is the true spirit of Vinyasa indeed. Flow. Om.

And when you have your snack all made up, after about 1 minute of work, try it paired with some fine bread, a bottle of wine (should you be eating at a decent hour) or a bit of cant beat it for taste. Its rich and sweet, heady and robust. A pefect foil to all that yoga business, I promise...

So try this my dears, and enjoy. (Can also be made with roast chicken. Mmm.)

2 duck legs, skinned and shredded, with fat
1/2 teaspoon minced rosemary
4 large, ripe figs or apricots diced
A nice pinch of pepper

Using a large knife, roughly chop all the ingredients together. Taste and adjust seasonings to your fancy. Serve room temp with bread or crackers.

Makes about a cup


Earlier this month a federal judge upheld Chicago's ban on foie gras in restaurants. In dismissing the lawsuit by the Illinois Restaurant Association, U.S. District Judge Blanche Manning ruled that the city had a constitutional right to enact the ban. The Illinois Restaurant Association said it was considering an appeal. - AP

China has around 12 million cows producing 3 tons of milk each per year. The Chinese are estimated to consume about 18kg of dairy produce per capita. The Chinese Ministry of Agriculture has drawn up a new national standard on raw milk that will make testing for antibiotics in raw milk compulsory for dairy processors. Antibiotics are widely used by Chinese farmers in their dairy herds and there has been no regulation in place to restrict their use. A recent survey has shown that around 50 percent of milk products on the market contain antibiotic residues. In the U.S. and other countries, cows given antibiotics are typically withheld from the milk supply for some days and both farmers and dairy processors carry out routine testing for antibiotics, with serious penalties for those found to be selling milk containing residues.

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Saturday, June 23, 2007


MADE IN L.A. - Gayle's BBQ Sauce - Mashed BBQ Sweet Potatoes

Is it true that people everywhere dream of sunny Southern California? Well, for my money, they should. It's the best.

One of the great draws is the notion that we can BBQ all year round (which isn't exactly true, there are seasons in these parts, but whatever) and indulge ourselves in ways most of the world finds a bit quirky. (At first!)

For instance, it was here that someone at hit restaurant California Pizza Kitchen first devised of BBQ chicken pizza. And at time, it was quite the sensation, I assure you.

I'm guessing it was the combination of toppings that made it so was different. Off kilter. Tangy and surprising. And heavens is it good. I would go so far as to say, we all became somewhat obsessed.

But that was eons ago my peaches, seriously eons...possibly the 80's! Now we all indulge in seemingly off-kilter toppings on our pizza pies and think nothing of it. Right? But then? Then it was beyond...just beyond.

We all had to have it.

And now that I have brought it up, you are just dying to recreate that first heady dream of BBQ chicken pizza, aren't you! Well my loves, you can! You CAN! (And without resorting to buying something frozen) All it takes is the simple act of purchasing this weeks local favorite - MADE IN L.A. Find - Gayle's BBQ Sauce. (Which is Gluten Free! Whoopee!) A pizza crust and a bit of chicken, and you are on your way!

Turns out this bottle of joy was not only devised right down the road in super-fab Beverly Hills, in 1984 but it was the secret weapon in the pizza revolution, (Or so their website tells me.) as the official BBQ sauce of CKP. And it comes in four distinct flavors. Fancy that. They are Original Sweet 'N' Sassy, Extra Sassy, Honey Mustard and Honey Sweet. Turns a girls head it does! Delicious options all.

The Extra Sassy (pictured) that I purchased at Whole Foods is gloriously over the top, it's a thick and rich, sweet and tangy revelation. And whether doused on chicken or topping corn, it transcends your outdoor dining into a moment of sheer perfection.

Find it, buy and and think up ways to ingratiate it into your world. Make pizza on the grill! Pour it over kebobs and ribs and burgers! And in the mean time...try this out for size...a new way to use an old favorite indeed...

4 medium red garnet sweet potatoes, peeled
1 teaspoon butter
Gayle's Extra Sassy BBQ Sauce
1 inch peeled ginger
oil for frying

Chop the sweet potatoes into uniform sized pieces. Fill a pot with cold water, add a healthy dose of salt, add the potatoes, bring to a boil and simmer until cooked through.

Meanwhile, using a very sharp knife, slice the ginger root into very thin threads. Heat a small amount of oil in a pan and add the ginger to fry until just golden. Remove and drain on paper towels, sprinkle with salt and hold until ready to use.

When the potatoes are done, drain, and add the butter. Mash well and add Gayle's BBQ Sauce to taste.

To serve, top with frizzled ginger.

Makes 6 - 8 servings.


California Pizza Kitchen was founded in 1985 by Larry Flax and Rick Rosenfield. There are now over 200 full-service restaurants, 28 CPK ASAP locations and their pizza is available in the freezer cases of grocery stores. -

Most of the 40,000 tonnes of barbecued charcoal used every year in the UK comes from unsustainable sources.

Arguably the world’s the largest barbecue event was held in Des Moines, Iowa in 2002 sponsored by both The KCBS (Kansas City Barbecue Society) and IBS (Iowa BarbecueSociety) in co-operation with the Iowa Pork Producers where over several thousand pounds of pork were barbecued and served.

3 out of 4 American households own a grill and they use it on average 5 times per month. - BBQ Online

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Thursday, June 21, 2007


Deep Fried Spinach (Oh My!)

Happy first day of summer! My favorite day of the year! Long, languid and shimmery summer is upon us.

But yesterday was last day of Spring, and on that occasion, I ventured deep in to the heart of Beverly Hills to have lunch with my dear friend, the superbly ethereal Ms. Tiffany. (Who forgot to mention in her celeb spotting roundup that we saw random British hottie sensation, Caprice...I would have rather seen Meg White...)

Spending time with Tiffany is always a lovely and light hearted way to spend an afternoon. Delightful really.

We met up at The Farm and were both decked out in Ella Moss. We drank a refreshing bottle wine, (what could be better on a warm day?) nibbled on salads (okay, she nibbled, I devoured.), and gossiped about food, restaurants, celebs, and the merits of homeopathic veterinary medicine. In other words, it was a perfect afternoon.

And thank goodness lunch was a salad, because lemme tell ya, after having made this deep fried spinach concoction three nights in a row? I was in need of something a bit less...insane.

Why insane?

Because this recipe is so bad for you, I can't even believe it.

Does that mean I will stop making it?

Pfft. Heck no! It's tasty! Darned tasty. Extra-crispy-oily-salty-verdant-tasty. Which is why I keep coming back, and back and back...

And you should too. Now, at this point, I hope you are wondering, how can you too enjoy deep fried spinach? (That was what you were wondering, right?)

Well, my peaches, its easy as pie. Except for the fact it is a wee bit dangerous, and decidedly messy. Dangerous because spinach (turns out) is like, I dunno, 80% water? And oil and water? Not friends. So the coupling of the two is a bit...explosive. But fear not. With a handy splatter guard and a quick mind, you should be fine.

So try this my dears, and enjoy, just don't forget to carve out some time on the treadmill after you indulge in this delight.

2 pounds cleaned spinach
vegetable oil
optional garnishes: lemon zest, sesame seeds, fried ginger or garlic, shredded nori...

Heat about 2 inches of vegetable oil in a large, wide pan. Carefully (really, really carefully...) add a large handful of is going to boil and splatter so the second you add it, cover the pan with a splatter screen. Cook, stirring a few times, for about 6-8 minutes until it is all translucent. Remove and drain on paper towel lined plates or cookie sheets. Salt and garnish immediately. Continue with the rest of the spinach. Oddly, this stuff can stay crisp for about an hour, (versus getting soggy) so take your time, and do be careful...

Makes four - six side servings.


Cottage cheese is 80% water, lettuce 95 %, spinach is 90 %, and milk is 88 % water.

The first modified vegetable oil to achieve large-scale commercial production, canola was developed because of nutritional concerns in animals with the fatty acid, erucic acid. In canola oil, oleic acid replaced the erucic acid found in traditional rapeseed oil.

Looking for this site? How about you Google "Does Olive Oil Make You Sexy" or "Marty Ordman Wedding" and see what comes up! (I'll save you the trouble...this site comes up...)

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Wednesday, June 20, 2007


Baked Pasta with Cheese

I believe there is something awry in my world when I can't convince any of my friends that they want to eat this. I just can't figure it out.

Look. I make food, I eat food, I go to the gym to work off said food, and then, I come home, and lo, there is still more food. Staring out at me from my fridge. Waiting to be consumed. Pleading with my guilty conscious not to be thrown out, or worse...but I am just one girl! A girl who cannot possibly eat as much as my eyes would have me. And yet...

So I offer the food to friends. I invite them over with alarming frequency. And when they show up, I ply them with tasty vittles. Or I drop it off at their homes. I'm just nice that way. Nice Rachael.

And they seem to like it.

But then came this. Ooey-gooey baked elbow pasta with cheese. Your basic North American food.

Scrumptious, calorie laden food. And I didn't even fancy it up! Oh no. No ham. No tomatoes. Not a sprig of thyme to be found nestled in its hallowed layers. Just pure carb and fat decadence.
Akin to blowing off a few meetings and going to the spa on a weekday to get a Swedish/Shiatsu combo massage from a blind man who leaves you so blissed out you forget dinner plans and end up... (Oh wait, I did that. And I ate the pasta...bad Rachael.) I's just really good.

Now if you were here in town, wouldn't you love to take a bite of this dish? Wouldn't you heed my call? Can't you just close your eyes and revel in its simplistic perfection? Seriously, wouldn't you want some? (And yes, Mr. Ombudsman who "passed," on a home delivery of this exact piece, I am talking to you. Training for a marathon? Bah.)

But sadly for me, you are reading this on line and we don't know each other well enough for me to be dropping food off on your instead I must encourage you to try this recipe. Try it, and devour it, and lick and smack your lips and know that you have done good. And next time I make it...maybe I can Fedex some to you...

1 lb. elbow macaroni, cooked al dente
1/4 cup flour
1 1/2 cups whole milk (this may vary), room temp is best
2 cups shredded cheese
salt and pepper
bread crumbs

Preheat your oven to 350F

Butter a 8x8 baking dish

In a saute pan, melt 3 tablespoons of the butter. Whisk in the flour and stir to combine. Continue to cook for a minute or so. Add 1/8 cup of the milk, stir to combine. Repeat with another 1/8 cup of milk. Continue doing this, all the while stirring to make a creamy paste. When you have a thick, almost pudding like consistency, add the cheese and stir to melt. Stir in the pasta and pour into the baking dish.

Top with bread crumbs. Cover with foil and bake 35 minutes. Remove the foil and continue to bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly. Cut into squares and serve.


And yes, I know I said this was the best mac n' cheese ever...and it is, but I amend that to be in the "fancy" category. So there. (Actually, I totally forgot about that recipe until just now. Doh!)

Why did Yankee Doodle name the feather in his hat Macaroni? Macaroni was what they called the fancy trim popular on the hats of military officers then, like the stuff on the visor of naval officer hats now.

Chicago-area real estate broker Tom Seefurth said he has created a pizza-flavored beer. Walter Payton's Roundhouse in Aurora, IL. will serve the pizza beer as long as the supply lasts. - KPTV Beaverton

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Thursday, June 07, 2007


Poached Egg with Tarragon

You can pretty much rest assured that when there is a picture of eggs on this site, a night of heavy drinking precluded the post. And this, my peaches, is no exception.

But to begin, I will list a few of the pearls of wisdom The Ombudsman and I have learned while I was away from my computer...

1. Picnics at midnight are a lovely thing

2. Beechwood Restaurant went from mediocre experience to Very-Much-Off-The-List. (Boo on them. Just boo.)

3. Tarragon and eggs are a match made in heaven. Especially after an afternoon of drinking my new bev of choice, a Dark and Stormy (more on that later this week)

4. Philly Cheese Steak is fantastic, paired with a pitcher of locally brewed Angel City beer on a warm Thursday afternoon. (It also makes a visit to the museum that much more fun, lemme tell ya...)

5. Deep fried spinach is an oily, dangerous, delicious mess and should not be considered a side dish. Okay, it should. Wait, no it shouldn't.

So back to the eggs...

I was hung over. I needed protein. What more can I say? These fit the bill. Oh heavens did they ever.

You know, poaching eggs kinda fascinates me. There is a real art to it, and I could be wrong here, but I suspect most people think of it as something a bit la-dee-da for everyday...but if you ask me, its well worth it. And you certainly don't need hollandaise sauce to make this taste superb.

What it is is perfection. Paired with sweet-licorice tarragon and a heaping helping of butter, well, what could go wrong! And after a night of drinkies, this is an ideal way to rebalance, refresh and recharge!

So try this my dears, and enjoy.

4 slices of toast
4 eggs
1/8 teaspoon white vinegar
1/4 cup softened butter
2 tablespoons tarragon
Black pepper and salt to serve

Mince the tarragon and mix together with the butter.

Bring a large pot of water to a low, gentle simmer. Add the vinegar. Gently crack an egg over the water and using a slotted spoon, give it a turn. Lower the heat if it is roiling around at all. Remove when just opaque, about 3 minutes. Remove and put on a plate with a paper towel to drain. Repeat with remaining eggs.

Serve with buttered toast and salt and pepper to taste.


In the United States, we eat nearly 10 billion eggs a year; or 26 million every day

Poaching: cooking in simmering liquid

Broccoli, Brussel Sprouts, Scallions, and Summer Squash will last for 4-7 days in plastic bags in the crisper. Apricots, Peaches, Pears, Nectarines, Mangoes, Kiwis, Plums and Melons should be ripened before refrigeration, and stored in plastic bags when ripe. Melons should be used as soon as possible after ripening.

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Monday, June 04, 2007


Tuna, Beet & and Avocado Salad

I was down in San Diego recently, trying my level best to zen out.

Why? It is just a nice place to focus on emptying ones mind. (Well, if you don't have a place in Palm Springs that is. But if you do have a place in Palm Springs, well, Hi! My name is Rachael and I want to be your new best friend.)

I was there for a few days to relax, enjoy and focus on finding my own personal Bodhi tree, as it were. But try as I might to focus on getting my mind to release, what I just kept finding myself wondering was if the real key to happiness is being a former member of (late 90's boy band) N'Sync.

I mean, of the two former members of said band that I can actually name/think of/picture, they both seem to be living quite large (in the parlance of our times) these days, right? Right. And the one that I somehow ended up having dinner with, well, bless his heart, he seems like a real swell kid, and living large only begins to describe this young gentlemans liifestyle.

We were a large group, and I certainly was the only person there who was a friend of a friend of a friend of the bartenders next door neighbors best friends hairdresser, but none the less, there I was, basking in the oddly B-list glory of it all. (And yes, I am throwing out this story because I jokingly mentioned another "celebrity" in my last post. Just keeping up with the theme you see. The theme.)

But the best part of meeting a boy who I really had no clue about, (minus distracting me from my Buddhist-ish mission) was hearing some strange tales of his fan encounters. Stories involving things like ladies undergarments, large stuffed animals and food. Lots and lots of food. Eating it, being given it, shopping for it, and most importantly (to this rambling post), having it thrown at you.

Now, I am not one to take another persons story and make it my own (and let's face it, I could hardly pass off a 26 year old boys encounter with a tweenaged girl in a supermarket somewhere in central Florida as my own, try as I might) but I will say that should you ever find yourself face to face with your teenaged dream boy, lobbing produce at him is not the way to go. Nope. Under no circumstances should you find a root veg and toss it his way.

On the other hand, you can invite him over for luncheon and offer up said root veg in a delicious and media-body-conscious medley such as this. It will knock his socks off. Much as the beets in his story did...but that is for him to tell some other time.

For now, try this and enjoy!

2 avocados, sliced thin
2 large tuna steaks, diced
2 large beets, roasted, cooled and diced
1 large cucumber, peeled and diced
1/2 red onion, minced fine
2 Tablespoons highest quality olive oil
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 anchovy, mashed (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

In a bowl, combine the onion, olive oil, vinegar, mustard and anchovy. Season to taste. Divide into two bowls. In the first bowl, toss in the beets and let marinate while you compose the dish. In the second bowl, do the same with the tuna and cucumbers.

Lay down a layer of the avocado on four chilled salad plates. Top with some of the tuna and then the beets. The beets are going to stain everything red, so don't stir them around too much. Drizzle with any remaining dressing, season with pepper and serve.

Serves four.


Buttery Goodness Now America's Top Domestic Product. New data from the U.S. Commerce Department show that rich, buttery goodness beat out automobiles, timber, and crispety-crunchitiness as the country's most valuable commodity in fiscal year 2006. "Soaring demand among consumers for the melt- in-your-mouth sensation of buttery goodness, combined with increasing production efficiency, meant that more then 32 million tons were manufactured and consumed last year," said Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez, who noted that sales of chewy, double-stuffed deliciousness stagnated in this same period due to inflation and regional shortages of cream filling. Domestic orders for farm machinery, icy-cool mint, and computer components also fell last year. - The

N'Sync did a commercial for McDonalds in 1999.

And yes, name dropping is tacky, bad form, and all that. But in this case, I plead guilty for the sake of comedy. Thank you.

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