Oddities and Obsessions

sicilian-olives-300x225.jpg Have you eaten at the Tuckers recently?”

“You mean the olives and the almonds?”

“Every fucking time. That’s all you get until dinner.”

Well, it’s true. I don’t like to stuff people before I feed them. I want that feeding-the-pirhanas feeling when I bring the pasta out. Forks flashing. That kind of thing.

I have no interest in serving food to full people.

So, we put out a bowl of olives – usually the “festive mix” or whatever it’s called, from Fairway, or those big, fat Sicilian olives, a bit lighter green in color, meaty and briny.

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puff-pastry-tomato-tartsThese! Are they not gorgeous? I think they kind of scream summer in their own not-so-subtle way. They are certainly eye-catching on a platter together.

There is something about puff pastry. It has this way of making everything so darn cute, elegant and fancy all at the same time. If you have never used it, please give it a try. It's so easy to make something beautiful with it. No skills necessary.

I saw this container of colored tomatoes at Costco and had to get them. This was definitely the perfect dish to show off the diversity of their colors. However, using all red tomatoes will be as equally striking. You decide which to use.

Remember, tomatoes are one of the top food sources for daily doses of vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin E, potassium and fiber. So eat up!!

Filled with goat cheese and herbs, there couldn't be a better appetizer. However, these make a great side dish too.

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waffle_boy.jpg
 Charlotte Dean

I was reading the waffle recipe that comes with the Toastmaster Waffle Iron and it says that you put ½ cup of batter in your waffle iron to make a 9-inch round waffle.  Seems simple enough. 

About three years ago, I was in Nashville at a weekend songwriting workshop. I stayed at a hotel that claimed to be next door to a Waffle House. To me, when you say “next door,” that means you can walk out one door to the sidewalk then walk up a path to another door.  That’s “next door.”  To get to this particular Waffle House from my hotel I had to hike up a short hill to the highway, walk about 50 feet to the next clearing, then down the same short hill to get to the parking lot of the Waffle House.  Clearly it wasn’t designed for foot traffic from the hotel. Then again, I didn’t really stay in Nashville long enough to explore this design further.

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cowpartsThe little bell on the glass door jingled and I became breathless with anticipation.  He looked up just for a second and then turned back, took a large knife off the rack, and started slicing into the beef tenderloin

“Lady, how much you want?” he asked the woman standing in front of him.  Her ruby red lips pursed as she held up her thumb and forefinger with three inches between them.

“This much.”

“Here?” He held the knife two inches in and the woman started to scream.

THIS much!!!” she said, slapping her palm on the counter and shaking her measurement fingers at him again.

He smirked, cut accordingly, tore off a piece of thick, shiny paper, and wrapped the beef tightly.  I could watch him tear butcher paper all day.

“Thank you ma’m.  Next!  Number 68.”

I walked down the display counter, sliding my finger along the cold glass.  So many cuts, so many choices.  What would it be today?  Prime Rib?  Oxtail?  Duck Breasts?  I feel no limitations exist for my fantasies within these walls.

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socks.jpgI am not a totalitarian, you probably aren't either, but there are times when our leftist minds linger on a fleeting thought that fatally undermines our morality. This thought is induced, as I'm sure you are aware, by an errant sock.

Stories have been written to explain the missing sock. Some claim that gnomes are responsible. Others suggest that socks may have just fallen behind the dryer. These tales answer the ontological question: Why is my sock missing?

I am far more concerned with the political and ethical implications of this conversation. Namely, how should one judge a sock that is missing its partner. The school of thought, which I tend to follow in my daily life, is one of tolerance. I throw the singular sock in with rest. One big socky family. Beautiful.

The other school, says with fascist efficiency: "This sock is not normal, eliminate it."

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