The day went downhill from here.

Some years I pre-gird my loins in preparation for Mothers’ Day; some days it sneaks up on me. Either way, Mothers’ Day sucks the fat one when you’ve got no mom.* Don’t get me wrong – I utterly adore my mother-in-law** and feel incredibly fortunate to have married into a family that I love as much as my own. But Mothers’ Day still has the power to make me pretty cranky, and in more than 4 of the past 8 years I’ve wanted to tell it to suck my metaphorical dick.***

You know what can make the day better? Getting into a four-car pile-up on the way to your in-laws’ because the assholes around you were too busy talking on the phone and/or rubbernecking at another accident that had happened less than 15 minutes prior.****  But that’s not what this is about.

*In that she passed away, not that I was asexually created from a single gamete.

**Totally seriously.

***Which is fucking HUGE.

****5 minutes after our accident, while we were waiting on the side of the road for EMTs to show up and check me out, ANOTHER asshole caused ANOTHER three-car pile-up on the SAME stretch of road.

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Thursday Night Smackdown: Charlie Trotter goes "meh."

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If Tastespotting doesn’t want this one, they can officially SUCK IT.

Thomas Keller could maybe take the teensiest lesson from Charlie Trotter. Because in addition to his many other cookbooks showcasing his incredible restaurant food, he puts out books like Charlie Trotter Cooks at Home. Do you hear that, Keller? AT HOME. IN ONE’S HOUSE, where there is a HOME KITCHEN, one does not want dinner to take 17 HOURS TO PREPARE and liquids move from one place to another CONSTANTLY without going through the chinois which one does NOT EVEN OWN. AT HOME. HOME HOME HOME.

Possibly I am still a touch bitter.

So tonight, from Charlie Trotter Cooks at Home, we have seared duck breasts with orange vinaigrette, ginger-braised celery and swiss chard. And yes, it was slightly meh, but it also took slightly less than 1 hour to prepare.

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Let's appropriate others' cultural heritages: Happy Cinco de Mayo!

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Speaking of appropriating: currently on my TV is a commercial for the Mohegan Sun casino with a jingle sung to the tune of “My Sharona.” Clever, or harbinger of the end of culture?

Cinco de Mayo: A day where office workers everywhere can gather at Mexican chain restaurants for happy hour and get smashed on frozen strawberry margaritas in honor of Mexican independence. Olé!

As the rest of us know, Cinco de Mayo is observed mainly in the state of Puebla and commemorates a victory of Mexican forces led by General Ignacio Zaragoza Seguín over the French in the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862, duh. I know General Seguín (or Iggy, as I like to call him) is probably a personal hero for many of you, as he is for me.

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The Best Sunday Morning

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Is when you roll over in bed and mumble sleepily, “I want a bagel.”  And then your partner gets up and dressed and walks to the bagel shop (bagelry?  bagelhaus?), leaving you to continue slumbering peacefully all tangled up in the blankets, and returns with your favorite bagel and cream cheese (everything with scallion, if you’re wondering).

And then you win the lottery and the lord smites all your enemies.

But mostly the bagel thing.  What’s your best Sunday morning?

Thursday Night Smackdown: The Grill Flies at Midnight

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Happy Ribtoberfest, everyone!

I know it’s not October, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be Ribtober. If it were up to me, we’d also have Ribtember and Ribril*, so it’s probably a good thing for all of us that it’s not up to me.

Tonight’s ribs come to use thanks to The Food of Thailand: A Journey for Food Lovers a book about authentic Thai street food and home cooking written by three Brits. They (the ribs, not the Brits) are accompanied by sweet corn cakes, cucumber salad and a decidedly non-Thai but outstanding bottle of Saison (a crisp summer Belgian ale).

*Doesn’t that sound like a pharmaceutical? “Ribril is not for everyone. If you are pregnant or may become pregnant, talk to your doctor before starting Ribril. Side effects may include nausea, dry mouth, uncontrollable palm sweat, male pattern baldness and Scurvy.”

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