Christmas 2017


Christmas Eve food—French onion dip and pimento with handmade mayo, mince pies, pate, meat, cheese, crisps, nuts, dried fruit, oranges, membrillo. Katy made bacon and walnut fougasses. (That’s Samira’s hand, she and her sister Namu came over.)


Christmas breakfast: pumpkin gingerbread waffles with buttermilk caramel rum syrup I made.


Courtesy of my sister Meghan, the cats have enjoyed the cat advent calendar, cat stockings and cat Christmas Dinner (well, Sasa hates the dinner, but.). Also, Sasa’s Compliments of the Season!

Peking duck with trimmings, goose fat roast potatoes, mutton kottu roti stuffing, orange cranberry relish, pigs in blankets, Italian Parmesan Brussels sprouts, sweet potato wedges.


Cutting into the Christmas Cake I made (I did not go easy on the home-made marzipan).

My gifts to Katy. The vase is late Victorian vaseline glass.

Katy’s gifts to me—the red vines apparently got her to the shipping charge. 🙄 I had a conniption at the zine she had made. And she got me these, which have already seen the front lines in the syrup wars.

Gifts from my family to me! Inexplicable cake pop molds?? HIGHLY EXPLICABLE TEA AND USED FOLIO BOOKS!!


Eating Well On The Cheap



This is a LONG thing I wrote some years ago for an American friend who was just starting to keep house after coming back from having lived on a research station in Antarctica for a few years/never having had to think at all about any of this (thus the kind of ‘Boil water. Insert pasta. Goooood.’ tone.):

“Okay so MASSIVE TLDR, and I’m not sure how much you cook, so I apologize if this is too much or too little detail:

Sesame Sweet and Sour Eggplant:

This, over rice, makes a very decent meal for four, provided the substantial ‘umami’ taste does it for you. It relies on your still having some slightly spendy shit in your cupboard, namely a little rice wine vinegar and some mirin, but I’ve substituted both in a pinch. Almost any alcohol can be substituted with the help of Google, and all vinegars ever are essentially substitutable*, you just want to be careful not to like, use balsamic in a cake or something. And nothing-but-nothing is cheaper than plain old white vinegar.
* As are a lot of oils, provided the flavor again, isn’t wildly off–only certain Mediterranean cakes can take olive oil, for instance.

Zuppa Toscana:

Italian sausage is for losers who can’t take el cheapo ground pork and add some spices to it–doing that is just as nice as, perhaps nicer than, the branded stuff. ‘Cans of chicken broth’ are also an illusion (“and so is death!”): stock cubes or your own used bones, made into stock (super easy) will do fine and cost very little. Only the cream in this will really cost much, and not /that/ much.
Lebanese Cauliflower (Allegra again):

Take a whole head of cauliflower. Douse with olive oil, throw on some rough salt and some cumin. Roast it 45 min to an hour at 375 F. It’s done when it’s lightly browned and doesn’t resist fork-pokery. Take it out, douse in a little more olive oil, squeeze lemon over it, and think about tossing on more sea salt and parsley as you like. This seems weird, but it’s nutty and tasty and could easily be served at a party.

Home-Made Apple Sauce:

Cook aged apples down with a bit of butter, sugar and some spices, mash like they’re potatoes, and eat, can or freeze for a delicious desert (especially with a little ice cream).

Malawian Chicken and Peanut Rice:

This is a profoundly good, second-helping-inducing one-pot meal that’s hard to mess up. It’s also great to see the little-known cuisine of one of the world’s poorest countries coming into international repute.

Tea and Home-made Lemonade:

Soda’s convenient, but spendy. Taking the time to make some iced tea or lemonade in the evening, maybe flavored with berries (canned or frozen will do as well as fresh) or canned mango pulp (this is cheap in Indian and West Indian neighborhoods), and throwing it in a bottle before work, saves a ton over the week when money’s tight.

Plain Natural Yoghurt:

A MILLION uses. Home-made mango lassi, with canned pulp? For breakfast, with a simple swirl of jam or a bit of granola and dried fruit? Oatmeal (from cheap simple oats) can be dressed the same way.

Home-Made Bread:

Bread’s not too expensive, but flour’s practically free, and bread’s really not as intimidating as it seems! Start with a little quickie flatbread if you’re nervous. Plus, a warm, home-made loaf is revelatory in its niceness, and with a little love can substitute for Dinner in a way Wonderbread could never dream of doing.

Oh the Meats You’ll Meet:

Ground pork, liver, etc. are all cheap cuts, so think about home-made pates, terrines, game pies, etc. Nicer than the ‘pot pie’ of dreaded Sam’s Club memory by far, and not nearly as intimidating as they look.

They make good lunches-at-work, and can also take a LOT of substitution. Which leads me to the next point.

On a similar note, quiche is surprisingly cheap, easy and impressive.

The sales section is your friend! It is my BEST friend. Are they getting rid of meat that’s about to go off? Freezer or tonight’s dinner. Let the savings be your guide. You can always find something awesome to do with a steal.

Sausage and Mash: (we don’t really have this in the US)

With any on-sale sausage or cheap ground pork you spiced yourself and a side of easy mashed sweet potatoes (I like using garlic and onion powder, sea salt, and a bit of sour cream, cream cheese and butter–a splash of milk if needed), this becomes deluxe. Regular mashed potatoes are also great here.

Egg-fried rice with fragrant ginger broccoli:

Rich or poor, one of my absolute favs. The nicer broccoli is a plus, but if none’s forthcoming, regular broccoli will take on a decent enough taste, given a slightly longer time to become one with the flavors.

Lebanese scrambled eggs:

Surprisingly refreshing brunch/breakfast, with some toast.

Cabbage: IS SO CHEAP! Eat with corned beef and, or in dumplings:



General Dumpling Guide:

Meat dumpling recipe: * fav

Veg dumpling options:


Dead-easy Roast Chicken:

With even an /only just decent/ chicken, this is SO so so so good.


French New Years’ Lentil Dishes:

There are several variations of this, but the French do a hearty, porky pulse to ring in the New Year, and pulses cost jack.

Speaking of pulses:

CURRY IS YOUR FRIEND. (Most Americans don’t make this at home much, or see it out all that often.) Sing, muse, of the rice that stretched for ages!
This makes a good amount (the stove-top method produces a markedly better result), though again, it relies on some cover staples, like fish sauce.

In aforementioned-lentil terms, Daal’s a friend. A very cheap friend. A *lot* of curries are decently economical, so look around at your Indian, Thai, and other Asian options. Then look at your fridge. What’s that at the back? Now back at the internet, now back to your stove. There’s a pot of rice on it. It’s waiting for you.


Spaghetti Sauce:

A 30-cent can of tomatoes every time. Buying pre-made sauce isn’t even worth it. Just spice it yourself, it’ll be at least as nice. With caramelized onions (I use brown sugar to speed a regular white onion along, though it still takes a bit and it’s worth doing several at once and stashing them in the freezer) and maybe then some roasted mushrooms or peppers, even more so.


Build Your Own Pizza:

Tomato paste (I’ve cheated and used the above ‘tin of tomatoes cooked down a little’ to no ill effect, just watch the runniness), the cheapest mozzarella balls, and either some blank pizza bases or dough you make yourself (, plus some caramelized onions and maybe a few veggies or some crumbled feta? Bliss. There’s also a strange ‘thinly sliced potatoes, a bit of heavy cream and a little rosemary’ topped pizza in the Leon I cookbook that is oddly compelling.


Home-made mac and cheese:

Make a roux by cooking like a tablespoon of flour with like a tablespoon of butter into a light brown paste. Add your milk, stir, add your cheese, get the consistency you want, then add anything special you want before dumping on cooked pasta—same basic principle for an Alfredo.



This is the simple, adaptable DIY taco seasoning base I use, because paying El Paso for anything ever hurts my heart: .

Lemme pull something I wrote for a food blog:
“My Very Secret Re-fried Bean Trick:
So perhaps you serve tacos, the greatest quick supper ever devised by humans. Perhaps, to accompany the mighty taco, you buy canned re-fried beans! This makes sense, as re-fried beans are ridiculously delicious for, you know, some silly old beans. But these cans are not cheap, and worse, they’re insufficiently delicious. Purists and abuelas might insist on a two-stage process with hours-to-days of cooking time, but while their Frijoles Refritos are legendary, mine take about 10 minutes and are pretty damn tasty.

Fry some chopped onion and minced garlic in several tablespoons of butter. Go for a heavy skillet here. When the onion and garlic are soft and well-cooked, add black or kidney beans with their juices, which will largely cook away. You can mash up a can or two’s worth, according to your needs, with a potato masher (outside the pot or directly in it, it doesn’t really matter). Fry this up, stirring regularly, and add a fair amount of salt, to taste. Don’t be shy about the salt, that’s what makes these pop. Taste your mixture occasionally–if you think it needs more butter, it does. Additional garlic powder can also be your friend. When the mixture starts to dry out and sizzle around the sides of the pan, you’re done! Sprinkle cheese on for presentation and extra tastiness if you fancy.” [A/N: I NOW ONLY USE LARD FOR THIS.]

Other good options:

Stews and pot roasts tend to be good calls here, and to make tons and be amenable to freezing. Chilli. Grilled cheese. Winter warmers of that ilk. Adobo and southern American food can also be bargains–again, adobo just wants a lot of that sweet, sweet cheap vinegar. Also, it’s worth saving fat that drips off anything you roast or fry and freezing it–cheaper than oil or butter, perfectly fine for you, and far more flavorful when frying or roasting vegetables and the like. If you get meat with a lot of fat on it, chop the fat off, cut it tiny, and throw it in a low over or crock pot (use a drizzle of water as well if you’re using a crock pot) [A/N: I NOW SLOW-ROAST FAT IN THE OVEN TO RENDER LARD AND USE WHAT WON’T COOK OFF IN STOCK]. You’ll render the lard and get some use out of it/it feels more respectful to the animal, to me, to let as little as possible go to waste. Likewise, save bones for stock! You can make it twice with the same set of bones and veg [A/N I CROCK POT ROUND 1 12 HOURS, AND ROUND 2 24, ON LOW.], and it’s nicer than anything you’ll buy/a ballsier base for casseroles, soups, etc.

I think it’s easy to eat nice stuff on a budget, and, as probably everyone knows, a lot of cheap convenience food doesn’t actually work out to be terribly economical. But then it’s a matter of having at some point acquired cooking skills or an interest in cooking, and moreover not being so exhausted by your work and other responsibilities that you can’t be bothered to bargain-hunt, research, and prepare. So being able to make good food with not a lot of money is, crappily enough, a matter of privilege–but also a skill worth cultivating and passing on to everyone? Frankly that home-ec credit we had to take in high school probably should have included more Basic Cooking Skills And You stuff. I know I didn’t know jack in college, when I *really* could have used it.”

Links, June 1


My Kind of Spring Drink Recipe:Strawberry Gin Smash
mint lemonade
How to Make [the best] Chai [ever]
hard lemonade
hedgerow smoothie
How to Make The Bottom Line, a Coffee Cocktail That Gets Shit Done
how to make bubble tea

soft glazed pumpkin sugar cookies
Caramel Apple Steamed Pudding
Macaroon Recipe
Dan Lepard’s recipes for roast pineapple, coconut meringues and rum cream, plus pineapple tarts
Boozy Gummy Bears
Cadbury Creme Egg Brownies
The dough boy: cake, doughnuts and pudding recipes from Justin Gellatly
Deep Fried Sweet Tea

Cranberry Upside-Down Cake
Ube Macapuno Cake for Clarise’s 10th Birthday
banana ‘ice cream’
Gooey Butter Cake recipe
yellow cake recipe
Rainbow Sprinkle Cake
Spiced Apple and Banana Bundt Cake with Vanilla Caramel Glaze: looks nice, haven’t made
How to Bake Scientifically Accurate Cake Planets

Orange Glazed Cranberry Bread.
Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins with Cinnamon Streusel.
using jam in quick breads
Nutella Swirled Peanut Butter Banana Bread.
Best-Ever Banana Bread with Cream Cheese Frosting.
S’mores Banana Bread.

18 Microwave Snacks You Can Cook In A Mug
How To Microwave Mug Cakes That Actually Taste Good
14 Quick Microwave Desserts for Lazy People

Roasted butternut squash
Restaurant Style Beef and Broccoli
Clark’s Quiche
Try Some Jewish Ham This Thanksgiving
Chili garlic cassava chips
St Louis Toasted Ravioli
17 Red Lobster Recipes In Case The Seafood Chain Goes Away Forever
Crispy Tofu
Mushroom pasta with haloumi and walnuts
Roast Poussin with Prunes and Thyme
Nigella’s sweet potatoes w marshmellows
Savory Sweet Potato Casserole
salmon wrapped in bacon with maple glaze
buffalo wings
Tarte flambée, Flammekueche, Flammkuchen
This Simple Recipe For Pepperoni Pizza Cake Is A Gift
Bacon and Cheese Bread Using Tangzhong Method
18 Microwave Snacks
Roasted squash (Zucca al forno)
Nigel Slater’s pork pie recipe
General Tsao’s Chicken II

How to make epic pancakes with your Japanese rice cooker
Breakfast Is the Greatest Thing Ever to Happen to Mankind
21 Ideas For Energy-Boosting Breakfast Toasts
Perfect French Toast

Why I love my cookbook club
Cheap Eats: Cookbook Shows How To Eat Well On A Food Stamp Budget
Filipino Recipes
Rosh Hashana Recipes
What to Cook This Week
Eat purple: English lavender is perfect for cooking, both savoury and sweet
Great food pintrest
the spirit of the sea dinner: more an aesthetic than a menu, but some menu!ideas

Pure Menu
Warm Thai chicken & noodle salad
Apple Cider Vinaigrette: FOR HOCKINGLY GOOD

Ghibli feast #4: Kiki’s Delivery Service

The Thanksgiving Recipes Googled in Every State
The United States of Thanksgiving: “We’ve scoured the nation for recipes that evoke each of the 50 states (and D.C. and Puerto Rico). These are our picks for the feast. Dig in, then tell us yours.”

Links, May 29




McDonald’s is Hosting Wedding Receptions in Hong Kong
Doomed T.G.I.Friday’s is Doing Endless Appetizers
Holy Shit, Chris Martin Took His Kids to a Fast Food Restaurant
horrifying tiny burger set
KFC Customer Commits Assault With a Deadly Cake
Krispy Kreme Japan Has Doughnut Ice Cream Sundaes
Taco Bell is Going to Launch a Fancy New Upscale Version of Itself
Rebecca Tyrrel: JD Wetherspoon is named after a teetotal geography teacher from New Zealand
A McDonald’s Franchisee Shares Everything About the Company’s Fuckery
McDonald’s Tries to Win Breakfast By Wooing You With FREE CAFFEINE
102-Year-Old American Hero Just Wants to Eat White Castle on Her B-Day
9 Most Bizarre McDonald’s Locations In The World
Hamburger Chain Locations Across the U.S.
$100 Will Get You a Pass to Eat Olive Garden Pasta Until You Explode
My 14-Hour Search for the End of TGI Friday’s Endless Appetizers
Taco Bell Gave Me a Cellphone
Foods That Should Not Exist: The Entire Taco Bell Breakfast Menu
Dominos is Now Selling a Pizza With a Fried Chicken Crust


Dragon Castle Dim Sum
oh also, saw a restaurant today called, in French, The Sportive Cock. Too far.
Where to drink milkshakes in London
Land of the Western Sun: A West London Filipino experience at Sunrise Café
The Future of Filipino Food in London?
Friends and merienda at Lakwatsa
UK’s first cereal cafe in Shoreditch will sell 100 varieties over two floors

Manhattanites Demand Shutdown of Cafe That Attracts ‘Internet People’
Wing Wings Menu
Syracuse Servers Stage Walkout Over Racist Working Conditions
restaurant websites
A Trendy Restaurant Menu
Yelp And Michelin Have The Same Taste In New York Restaurants
Momo restaurant
Missouri Man Arrested for Hate Crime After Abusing Server
Bakery Trolls Dominique Ansel Hard After Receiving Cease-and-Desist
Gramercy Tavern’s Weird, Wonderful New Ice Cream Sandwich
Kitchen Nightmares Returns to Amy’s Baking Company, Yelling Ensues
Groundbreaking New York Restaurant WD-50 to Close Unexpectedly
Customers Whose Behavior Just Makes No Goddamn Sense
27 Ice Cream Shops You Need To Visit Before You Die
A Chicago Restaurant/Dream Factory is Selling a Wonut
If You Can’t Handle The Heat: Sexism In Restaurant Kitchens
Restaurant Watches Old Surveillance And Shares Shocking Results On Craigslist
Restaurant Gives Best Response to Request That Servers Show More Skin
The Hipster Bar Checklist
Because You’ve Been Good, Here Are Some Pretzel Dicks: soft pretzel filled with homemade peanut butter and buttercrunch brittle, sprinkled with Maldon sea salt and served with a side of whipped honey brown butter.

Four-Year-Old Girl’s Restaurant Review is Unspeakably Adorable
A Four-Year-Old Reviews Plum Restaurant (with her face)
A Four-Year-Old Reviews AQ (with his face)
A Four-Year-Old Reviews State Bird Provisions (with her face)
A Four Year Old Reviews Mission Chinese Food (with his face)
A four year old reviews AQ with his face
Quit Whining About Children in Fancy Restaurants

Notes From My Dinner At Guy Fieri’s Vegas Kitchen & Bar
Guy Fieri’s New Restaurant Menu, Item by Insane Item
Here’s What That Nightmare Guy Fieri Cheesecake Actually Looks Like

Velveeta’s Social Media Accounts Are So Amazingly Weird
Budweiser Reveals Their Beer Ingredients In Response to Petition
Dominique Ansel Creates Sundae in a Can For Some Reason
17 food combinations that should never, ever have been sold in UK stores
Little Debbie Snack Foods, Ranked
Doritos Are Apparently Trying to Mate With Every Product In Existence
Corner Store Food Plated Fancy

Amazing Donut Cake Recipe Teaches Idiots How to Make a Pile of Donuts
Pumpkin Spice Must Flow
Exotic Meats
Solar System Lollipops

Links, May 25



Russia Will Ban All American and Most E.U. Foods From the Country
Russia’s Food Import Ban is Already Backfiring Horribly
FDA Puts An End To American Artisanal Cheese

LITERATURE ( + one cheeky tv program)
Fictitious Dishes: Elegant and Imaginative Photographs of Meals from Famous Literature
‘To The Lighthouse’ Dinner Menu
Ava Chin, Eating Wildly
A Chef on Hannibal’s Cullinary Statements


25 Bakeries Around The World You Have To See Before You Die
What School Lunches Look Like In 20 Countries Around The World


21 Of The Most Delicious Cheap Eats In London
21 London Street Foods That Will Change Your Life
A review of Wuli Wuli and Camberwell’s other Chinese restaurants

You Probably Don’t Know About Ozark Cuisine Because of the KKK
Montana’s Trail House Brings Morally Hazardous Appalachian Cuisine to Brooklyn
23 Truly Unbelievable Dishes Found Only In NOLA
The ‘Sioux Chef’ Is Putting Pre-Colonization Food Back On The Menu
The Seven Best Pizza Styles In America
Ultimate Cheap Eats Guide in Chicago
Chicago Cheap Eats challenge
Bon Appetit Names Best Places In Chicago For Cheap Eats (PHOTOS)
28 new foods at Minnesota State Fair in 2014

24 Delicious Filipino Foods You Need In Your Life
The Deliciously Underrated World of Filipino Cuisine


Because We Need to Know: Sushi Etiquette
Malaysia is for Foodies!
The Best Taiwanese Shaved Ice in Los Angeles

Danish cake table
Danish coffee table
Let the kaffebord begin: a private pop-up bake shop in Roskilde, Denmark

8 Foods to Try in Brazil
Butter in Your Coffee? The Bulletproof Craze, Explained.
19 Israeli Delicacies That Aren’t Hummus
Parisian Macaron Crimes & Misdemeanors
The Best Pastries in Paris :: Top 38 Pâtisseries

The First Brunch!
Feasts of Christmas Past
Food Fables: Marie biscuits
Book Review: The Food History Reader: Primary Sources edited by Ken Albala
Paris 1906 menu
Cod Liver Oil

This Is Colossal’s Food Coverage
This Is the Porniest Food Porn of All Time
fucking terrifying mouth cake
Kathy YL Chan’s instagram


‘Human Flesh Burgers’ By Chef James Thomlinson Probably Do Taste Like Human
Take BuzzFeed’s Clean Eating Challenge, Feel Like A Champion At Life
Disgusting Desserts That Should Not Exist
kitchen floor spiral staircase wine cellar
This Breakfast Dish Has 8,000 Calories, Will Straight-Up Murder You
Candy Bars, Ranked
Official Cronut Recipe Is Out, Won’t Do You Any Good
Cute Desserts
Why Cooking Sucks
the worst food blogger
Game of Thrones Foods That Should Not Exist

Links, April 30


mini cheese fondu

Jade: still need to buy this for you so you can make a fondu at 3 am and stare at the bear shaped bread melting in the little pot begging for your help
Me: shit this is gonna be like puddi puddi
Jade: ahahaha
puddi puddi is gigantic tho no one can actually eat an entire puddy
hideous plate
oh god that is not nice fondue
there is no wine OH FUCK A HOT DOG TWO TWO

The Food Lab: The Best Way to Make Carnitas (Without a Bucket of Lard!)
The Definitive Ranking Of Ben & Jerry’s Flavors
Speculoos Hamantaschen
11 Delicious Biscuit Recipes That Will Change Your Life

The Thanksgiving Recipes Googled in Every State
The United States of Thanksgiving: “We’ve scoured the nation for recipes that evoke each of the 50 states (and D.C. and Puerto Rico). These are our picks for the feast. Dig in, then tell us yours.”

H&M’s Coachella Line is Everything Wrong with ‘Coachella Style’
Mall Makeovers: From Sea to Shining Sea
No One Is Learning Shit From Watching You Put on Lipgloss
Guess How Much it Costs Kim Kardashian to Wear Kim Kardashian’s Face
Every Single Fur Coat Cookie Has Worn on Empire So Far

The Ideal Woman
Home  »  Artwork   »   Women Resisting Heterosexuality In Western Art History
Women Resisting Heterosexuality In Western Art History

First Year Students Infected After Blood Oath Ceremony Around Mary Lyon’s Grave
How To Talk To Babies About Post-Structuralism
30 Reasons Why Northern Ireland is Weird But Wonderful
Highlighting an invisible conversation between hip hop and art before the 16th century.
Never Ending Dishes
Oh Don’t Do It
Whimsical Pair of Assholes Demand Money for 38 Perfect Weddings
Guy Accidentally Gets Invite to Bachelor Party, Raises $8K to Crash It
TSA Agent Finds Naughty Little Doggie in Checked Bag
44 Pics of Kids & Parents Looking Exactly Alike