Friday Fuck Up: Savory Yogurt Dinner

I often make my fiance buy a large tub of Greek yogurt when he makes his weekly milk and cereal run to the grocery store. I know not what I will do with said yogurt, but I know I will put the thick substance to use, be it mixed with fruit for lunch or turned into a sauce over a grain and vegetable salad.

But I’ve never thought about substituting chunks of eggplant, cucumbers and oven-dried tomatoes instead of peaches, blackberries and blueberries. And I should have stuck with that.

Instead, I shredded cucumbers into the yogurt, tossed in diced eggplant and roughly chopped oven-dried tomatoes. I sprinkled in salt and pepper and lemon thyme. During this incorporating period, I thought I was genius.

Then I took a few bites. It wasn’t terrible to start, but it just didn’t work. Especially the tomatoes. The tang of tomatoes and the extra oil that still clung to them made for a uncomplimentary creamy versus acid nightmare.

Both the Indians (raita) and Greeks (tzatziki) somehow make yogurt work at dinner, but this part German girl just couldn’t swing it. Any ideas how to turn yogurt savory?


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Top 10 Things to Eat Before the End of the World

It’s no secret that May 21, 2011 is Judgment Day—the end of the world—as so eloquently articulated (or do we mean ridiculously predicted?) by Family Radio Worldwide’s Harold Camping. Here at ES, we think the best solution to eminent annihilation is to indulge at one of our favorite foodie destinations. And if some of us survive, at least it’ll be easier to get a reservation.

10. English Pudding All Night

The stickiest way to finish up your time on Earth is at the  Three Ways House Hotel in Gloucestershire, England, where they have created the Pudding Club, an “end of the world” experience where you can indulge in a tasting of no less than seven puddings, from oriental ginger to jam roly-poly, and even stay the night in a pudding-themed bedroom. Talk about going out with a bang.

9. Salt-Baked Fingerling Potatoes with Bacon Butter and Anchovy Mayo

Chef Megan Johnson at Elsewhere Restaurant in New York City has created a deceptively simple dish combining the best of all things fatty, starchy, salty and creamy—all the palette pleasers you’ll miss when forced to live on dirt and ants if you’re lucky enough to survive.

8. Mexican-Style Street Corn with Cotija Cheese and Ancho Chile Powder

Austin’s La Condesa restaurant not only serves up more than 100 varieties of blue agave tequila (an essential for pre-Judgment Day partying), but also offers this signature south-of-the-border street corn side dish. If the world really were ending soon, we’d start covering every vegetable we eat in cotija cheese and chili. (Photo: Shelly Roche)

7. East Mountain Pork Live Paté

A beautifully decadent house-made paté is accompanied by onion confit and rye toast at Mezze, a classic bistro and bar nestled in the Berkshires with views straight to heaven. (Photo: Gregory Nesbit)

6. 1949 Chevalier-Montrachet Maison Leroy

Our bomb shelter of choice would have to be the St. Regis Deer Valley’s wine vault, stocked with more than 1,000 different rare labels. Acclaimed sommelier Mark Eberwein recommends popping one of these 60-year-old whites for your last night on earth. (Photo: My Wines and More)

Next: Top 5 Things to Eat Before the End of the World

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Feed Us Back: Comments of the Week


Desperation, if nothing else, leads to creativity. After ML shared with us her oatmeal in a coffee pot creation, we’re particularly impressed with some of your culinary inspiration:

Jessica Joens:
When I was studying abroad in Russia my roommate and I were so desperate for spaghetti with red sauce we made spaghetti directly in our electric kettle, drained it using panty hose, then tossed it with cold tinned tomatoes. It was actually pretty good.

Ramen noodles, cooked in a tin can over an open fire. If I’d only had some malt liquor, it would have been the ultimate hobo meal.

Apparently spiking malt liquor with OJ isn’t inventive enough, as Caleb points out:

Take a solid chug past the label and make up the difference with shitty vodka, add OJ per normal, and you have what some of us here call a Socrates. Pronounced Soh-Crayts.

A doctor’s in the house! Alex let’s us know that the Bleeding Heart (and all other organs, too) Cake from our Top 10 Favorite Halloween Cakes is anatomically correct:

omg the organs cake is so oddly realistic…

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Mary Had a Little Lamb. Roast.

If you look closely you can see a fan in the upper left hand corner. Placed there deliberately, it was wafting lamby scents through out the neighborhood.

It’s officially Fall and getting chilly.  I know some families make hamburgers and hot dogs to celebrate the end of summer. We, on the other hand, put a lamb on a spit and roast the shit out of it then invite neighbors and co-workers over to get completely inappropriate, courtesy of my uncle G.  In keeping with ES’ other end-of-summer post, I think this might count as food on a stick but more…I don’t know…pornographic?

I’m sure you have a lot of questions: where do you even buy a whole lamb? How long do you have to cook it for? How do you cook it? What parts of it do you eat? What parts are the best? What does it taste like? I The actual chef will reveal the secrets of the lamb after the jump…

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How Do You Take Your Hummus?


A while back, BS posted on the deliciousness that is Sabra Hummus. Before discovering Sabra, I had sworn off store-bought hummus, but now I’ve been reconnected with my long lost chickpea love.

Growing up in an Armenian family, the only thing I ate hummus with was pita or a spoon (sorry for partying). However, my favorite restaurant at college serves their hummus plate with pita and a large assortment of vegetables (including onions and tomatoes??? What the fuck). My boyfriend frequently enjoys hummus with carrot chips (seen above) or green peppers.

I don’t understand this. I love the taste of hummus blended with warm, carb-packed pita. I can’t stand the taste of hummus+vegetables=too much moisture. Not enough hummus. Hummus slides off carrots. Watery mess.

Comments on my kid’s food post revealed that hummus is becoming mainstream, even for babies.  How are the kids these days consuming this delicious wonder? Is it being disguised by watery vegetables or eaten on a spoon?

Enlighten me.

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Syn, Syn, Syndicated


Just letting you know, I’ve become Robert Novak. No, really. People now pay to reprint my writing. I know. Crazytown. So, watch out for a gansie coming to your local Onion…New York, Chicago, Wisconsin, Austin, Denver, Minnesota, San Francisco…

Oh, and I never read. This story for the Onion was quite a struggle and I severely bothered my friends over this feature.

Read and Feed

What used to be a way for suburban mothers to get out of the house has now evolved into a way for young, single 20-somethings to get out of the house. While book clubs may vary drastically in theme (feminist, history, Oprah), participants (co-workers, neighbors, Craigslisters), and fun (glass of wine, bottle of wine, bowl of marijuana), all book clubs rally around food.

Some book clubs meet at a centrally located restaurant where they can linger over dog-eared pages, drink from communal
pitchers, and let other people make the food—but that can lead to members spending more time contemplating the pages of a menu than those of their literature.

Instead, class up your next book-club gathering and create a meal based around your book choice. (Or, alternatively, choose your book around a meal.) Here are some fine page-plate pairings to get your literary and culinary mind in gear.

Ron Paul, The Revolution
w/ Broiled Steak and Chipotle Dipping Dauce

If you think hope is audacious, don’t care about villages, and are through trying to live up to daddy’s example, perhaps you’d be more interested in the political upheaval espoused by 10-term congressman and Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul. His The Revolution touts the glories of the Constitution, reveres the vision of the Founding Fathers, and rages at what’s wrong with our current government. While chewing through this meaty treatise on libertarianism, pay tribute to Paul’s Texas roots by chewing through a broiled steak.

In a Pyrex dish, marinade a cut of flank steak with extra-virgin olive oil, crushed garlic, cumin, oregano, chili powder, kosher salt, and freshly ground black pepper; toss in some red wine too, but only if it’s from California—Paul’s an isolationist. While this sits, mix together sour cream, one chopped chipotle in adobo sauce, plus some adobo sauce, salt, pepper, and a few squeezes of a lime to create a smoky, hot dipping sauce. When the guests arrive, stick the steak under the broiler for two minutes, then flip it and cook it for another two minutes. Transfer to a cutting board, drape it with tin foil, and let it sit for seven minutes. Slice against the grain and serve it with your sauce. Keep your utensils in the drawer.

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Mount St. Helens EXPLODES… in the Kitchen!

New Zealand Lamb

My Sunday Night Dinner Club took on a new form this past weekend – it was a task that we’ve not undertaken in quite sometime. What was supposed to be a nice quiet dinner for twelve turned into a debacherous affair for twenty-four. But what a night it was. If you are familiar with my Sunday night dinners then you will know they are themed, like last weeks picnic, for instance. Our spring tour continued with our good friends Summer Camp and his ladywife hosting (they are available for all future Sunday night dinners).

This past Sunday was the 28th anniversary of the eruption of Mount St. Helens in Washington State, and with Summer Camp being from Washington he thought what better way to celebrate this than to have a meal dedicated to all that is volcanoes. We planned the menu meticulously, and ensured that most, if not all, ingredients came from a region with a volcano.

To start we served a white bean and herbed crostini; we had Korean inspired lamb, albeit from New Zealand; and Japanese and Peruvian inspired miso garnet sweet potatoes, courtesy of our resident chef, T2. There was also a tomato and mint keftedes from Greece and last but not least, a Pacific-rim Fuji apple salad. Not forgetting dessert we created an amazing chocolate molten cake from Mexico (not really from Mexico, but we claimed that region for the dish). We even sought out Assyrtiko wine, which is made from a grape grown in volcanic ash in the Santorini region of Greece.

The lamb, keftedes and molten cake were simply amazing. I have included some pictures after the jump and more details re the lamb.

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