Dunkin’ Donuts Eggnog Latté

Chicken and waffles? Passé. Chicken and donuts? That’s more like it. Add a side of redeye gravy and you’re good to go. I entered donut-fried chicken into a Dunkin’ Donuts contest (of my own, and Dillinger’s volition) today and decided to pick up this hot-off-the-press Eggnog Latté while I was at it. It took twenty minutes to make, not because the talented baristas hand-beat the yolks and ground fresh nutmeg into steeped Arabica coffee beans, but because the cashier was lost or dead in the back freezer. After she cryogenically unfroze and took my money, I had a fresh latté in my hands.DSC_6555 Continue reading “Dunkin’ Donuts Eggnog Latté”

Dunkin’ Donuts Red Velvet Latte

The universe conspired against this post from the start. First, by introducing a drink at a time of year, what with climate change and all, that I’m tempted to call ‘Summer II: The Reckoning,’ Dunkin’ has failed before the eponymous holiday tree has hit the ground running. But, as both a red velvet aficionado and a staunch opponent of solid food, I soldiered on to my local Dunkin’ Donuts to try their new red velvet latte.
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Taste of the Union: Fall Bites

Womp womp, when was the last time I did one of these awesome round-ups? Probably around the same time Pandora thought it was appropriate to play ‘Hey There Delilah,’ which it’s doing right now. This time, it’s a little different- I have a mix of gluten-free products that I’ll give numerical ratings to, just like my big features, but…smaller. Think of it as the specialty food equivalent of GrubGrade’s First Looks or TIB’s Quick Reviews. Interspersed through this will be some recipes I’ve recently made that I’m particularly proud of.

Fuji’tude Juice

I went to sleep with two bottles of Riesling and now there’s Riesling on my breath and when I got out of bed this morning, my mouth was dry and by mistake, I banged my head on the headboard and tripped over my Birkenstocks and I could tell it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad hangover. At breakfast, the Bedfellow ate a Cortland apple and my Facebook friends posted photos of delicious brunch, but all I had was a cup of black coffee before I started to feel queasy. I think I’ll move to Paris and stop drinking. At the gym, I could only do twenty minutes on the elliptical and heave the kettle ball once before my stomach started hurting and the pretty people looked at me in the pretty gym clothes. I could tell it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad hangover. I don’t even know why they call them kettle balls. 

Continue reading “Fuji’tude Juice”

Taste of the Union: Back to School Treats

What have I been eating? You mean, outside of the trail mix I’m eating out of the bag, like some eco-friendly, organic trough? Plenty of good food, despite my long nights and early mornings.

Starting with a refreshing cocktail from the new bar, made with the last (sob!) of the Rhubarb liquor from Root, a splash of Fever Tree tonic, and Owl’s Brew Pink and Black tea-infused cocktail mixer. Much better than my last attempt, a drink that tried to mix cognac, coffee, and ginger libation. Not great.

These sweet citrus sodas from Q, the makers of my favorite tonic, are also great in cocktails, although lately, I’ve just been drinking them out of the bottle after school. They’re slightly bitter, like they’ve been steeped with the fruit rind, and are not too sweet.

Dinners have been, with the exception of my bangin’ tacos, fairly lackluster, and chiefly consist of whatever combination of meat + beans/rice + cheese/sauce I can inhale before the gym or before I pass out in bed. This is one of them, but I think it’s a clever one. Kraft mac and cheese is not gluten-free or friendly, but, as I have discovered, the cheese powder is okay for those with gluten sensitivity. Behold, Easy Quack. Replace the noodles with tri-color quinoa, add some creme fraiche, hot sauce, salt, and pepper to the cheese powder mix, and voila! It was awesome underneath grilled chicken.

This was another late-afternoon supper, a very easy cheese pizza, courtesy of the kind folks at Amy’s, who sent me a coupon. For the price, a heartbreaking $11 and change, it’s a relatively small pizza, and personally, I prefer the Trader Joe’s version, with a thinner crust and cost. But this had a really comforting, nostalgic flavor, like an amped-up Ellio’s with a thick, dense crust and a pervasive sourdough flavor, which I loved.

In fact, lately, tons of gluten-free treats have been coming in the mail! This all-purpose baking mix was from Glutino, and I used it to make some really delicious pretzel buns. It made quite a lot, too- eight baby slider rolls, six regular burger rolls, and two hot dog buns, which I used for…

These! It’s basically my rebuttal to the Red Robin Oktoberfest burger, which I cannot eat. Expect a post later. The sausages were especially unique, as they were made from buffalo.

These are the last of the Sugarfina gummies, the chili-ginger hearts, that I ate as a treat for finishing up some CivPro cases. These were very, very clever- a sweet, chewy gummy shell surrounding a spicy, jammy center. Really strong flavors.

This chocolate and almond tart from Hail Merry was also a treat for finishing assignments. I’m like a dog, I need incentive to do tricks or file memos. It was very, very rich, and I ended up taking two and a half days to finish it. Please, admire my bite.

Also, I swear this isn’t some sort of implicit ad from Crate and Barrel, advertising their adorable square plates. It’s just an indication that I need to get new plates. Unless you’re really into this one. These cookies are from a sweet company called Keep It Real Food Co, and all their products are gluten-free and vegan, which is also awesome. I’ve been eating their granola in oatmeal, on pancakes, and in cereal, too.

Fridge oatmeal, easy for early and fast breakfasts, in a multitude of flavors.

And finally, the FRCP, my new best friend for a million years, or until comfortably retire at the ripe, old age of 26, and my second best friend, CVS Gold Emblem blueberry-flavored cranberries with chocolate. They’re weird. I’m weird. We work it out.

Delicia Red Velvet Malt Beverage

Last week, the internet sent me broken champagne flutes, a clutch, lipstick and hell. Hell in the form of a premium carbonated malt liquor by the name of Delicia. Delicia is new ladyjuice for the ladies, especially the ones who crave something a little more dangerous than champagne with more instructions than the Anarchist’s Cookbook.

Delicia comes in four flavors: red velvet, whipped (yes, just ‘whipped’, which you’ll be both if you purchase this and after you drink it), peaches and cream, and strawberries and cream. Of course, it was essential that we try red velvet as my goal of becoming 14% red velvet cake can only be achieved by ingesting it in liquid form. Delicia came with activities for my ladyfriends and I. Little did they know that Stila lipgloss only makes me look more like a low-budget Chaz Bono impersonator pre-Chazzing. The more you know!

Armed with an iTunes gift card and a studded clutch, which I like to imagine was hand-selected for me due to my sassy personality, the Bedfellow and I went about trying this. It took us a while. We were scared, unprepared to party, and not quite ready to experience the sultry bubbles of cream cheese frosting and copious red food dye. But some things, like awful teen blockbusters and traffic accidents, come together organically, so at 12:35PM this afternoon, in a dark warehouse of a studio apartment, we found ourselves duly prepared to rock out with our mock out.

Delicia is liquid Spring Breakers. It’s the kind of thing everyone will be talking about and be curious to try, but its disappointment is a special breed of cur, the likes of which will leave red streaks of dye on your fingers and the taste of Tootsie Roll and KoolAid hooch in your mouth. It’s so sugary it makes Coke look like a sensible diet solution- both the soda and the drug. It has a bitter, beerlike aftertaste and aggressive bubbliness, like Kristin Chenoweth. And for all that fuss- alcohol? Alca-who? The alcohol content on this is so far gone it’s on the walls outside Walmart under the ‘missing children’ section. A fifth grader couldn’t find the alcohol in this. In a sense, it is perfectly marketed- toward the women in the bar nobody wants to speak to. The ones from New Jersey or Boston with bubblegum in their cheeks like pink-hued chaw and an inch of caked-on eyeshadow. They’re drinking this.

And for all their pomp and circumstance about knocking someone’s mascaraed eye out of their socket with the cork popping, Delicia’s silky, sparkly outer liner reveals a hard, stubby screwcap. Disappointment abound, and another ladyexploring ladynight ruined by diabetes.

We’ll always have the party playlist, Delicia.

~~

I’m working on embedding this in the post- damn you, Playlist! In the meantime, enjoy this text list.

1. David Bowie- Cat People
2. Gwen Stefani- Southside
3. Beats Antique- Oriental Uno
4. RJD2- Gypsy Caravan
5. The Doors- Alabama Song
6. Federico Aubele- Contigo
7. Serge Gainsbourg- Qui est in, qui est out
8. Beck- Sexx Laws
9. La Bouche- Be My Lover
10. Scissor Sisters- Laura
11. Moby- Run On
12. Billy Squier- Lonely is the Night
13. Kanye West- Runaways

Art in the Age Rhubarb [tea]

I’ve been watching a lot of 30 Rock lately and, since this morning, when I witnessed Episode 318, ‘Jackie Jormp-Jomp,” I’ve come to the sobering and ultimately deadening conclusion that this summer has basically been one, long dizzy day in the life of a middle-aged divorcee. If I take one more charming, aimless drive in the middle of the afternoon to the countryside or spend one more hour at the hot tub in the health club or at some coffee shop, I’m going to need to add another therapist to my Fall 2013 lineup. 

I think I’m ready for law school to start.

The most exciting thing I’ve done so far has been my nightly habit of a cocktail, coffee, and languid cruise around Petfinder, where I’ve submitted not one, but four applications for four separate Welsh Corgis who are desperately in need of a home, but, according to their rabid caretakers, not so desperate as to be placed in the carefully decorated one-bedroom apartment of a very well-dressed law student slash Casanova. Even though I asked multiple times, it does not give me any bonus points that I resemble a Welsh Corgi. 

Adopting a dog is more difficult than getting reservations at Jose Andres’ minibar in the summer, when I expected it would be as easy as walking into a Burger King, or at the very least, Gabrielle Hamilton’s Prune. So, I’ve stuck to what I’m good at, which is making craft cocktails and coming up with cute names for other pudgy, short-statured creatures. In other news, you can all start calling me ‘Mutton,’ but my fallback is ‘Bark.’ Ladies and gentlemen, Rhubarb, from Art in the Age.

It’s fresh, very herbaceous and verdant in flavor, and was sent to me after I missed their summer launch party, which included fresh doughnuts. Zut! But I’ve made up for that by drinking it with everything, including homemade fresh mozzarella with orange olive oil and fleur de sel…

And sundried tomato orzo with Scarpetta pesto, the aforementioned mozz, mascarpone cheese, and proscuitto. It’s a wonderfully versatile mixer, and in the past few weeks, I’ve enjoyed experimenting with various sweet fruits and syrups: club soda, lingonberry syrup, Q grapefruit, lemon, and orange soda, fresh lime juice, and even Chai tea has gone marvelously with it.

The Foodette (aka, Picture Unrelated)
(Aka, No Internet)
(Aka, Bark)
Ingredients: 2,5 ounces of Rhubarb liquor, 1/2 cup of Q lemon soda, 1/2 cup of club soda, squeeze of lemon
Instructions: Shake Rhubarb over ice, strain, mix soda and lemon in. Drink immediately. Forget to take photos and have another cocktail.

Three-Day Juice Cleanse: Day 2


Day 2: The Reckoning

12PM: Splendid news. I was walking through Whole Foods in a semi-drugged haze and found Blueprint Cleanse! I’d been dying to try this and now, for a mere $50, I can! Apparently the cleanses allot you six bottles per day, but I could only afford five, so I guess I’m doing the midget and/or children’s version of a cleanse. Tant pis. The juices are sleek and clear and increased the value of my rented refrigerator by 6.2%.
Also, this is what a $13 bottle of nut milk looks like. I drank it with my shirt off.
Unsurprisingly, the drink that costs two hours of untaxed income is delicious, if basic, like a very filtered horchata, and I immediately cry after I finish it, because it is gone and I will likely never have it again until I am working for a living, and that saddens me to the core.
2PM: I discover that the number of calories I ingest per day, divided by the number of times I nap, added to the laps I do in the swimming pool before retiring to the sauna equals the official number of times I’m allowed to subtly mention on Facebook that I’m doing a juice cleanse. Also, I have five less friends on Facebook. To celebrate my exclusivity, I drink ‘beet, apple, carrot, lemon, ginger’ and can’t help but notice that it looks exactly like cranberry juice, which goes really well with vodka. And pancakes.
It should be noted that this is my 3PM drink instead, as shortly after ingesting the nut milk, I passed out from approximately 9-3.
4PM: I drank the ‘cayenne, lemon, agave’ at an abhorrent coffee date and didn’t once consider choking myself on it. For that, I reward myself with a pair of leather shorts and another sip of juice. It tastes like it’s laughing at me with its minimal ingredient list and trendy typeface. I laugh back and remember that I spent $7 on pepper water. Now nobody is laughing.
6PM: I practice my smile in the mirror with a bottle of ‘lemon, agave, lime, mint’ and decide to take my juice to the gym to show it off like a newborn. Oddly enough, the herbs and citrus give me the impression of drinking citrus water at a fitness area of a hotel, and I burn 12 more calories than I normally do before passing out pantsless to an episode of 30 Rock.
8PM: My final drink with Blueprint is ‘pineapple, apple, mint’ after purchasing approximately $281.39 worth of groceries that I can’t touch for the next 36 hours. The good thing about this one is that it tastes like a very well-made cocktail, and costs about as much, so I can pretend that I’m at a party. A party with food.

I dream that I have cheated on the juice fast and wake up in tears.

TOTAL CALORIES: 990

Three-Day Juice Cleanse: Day 1

The setup: I’m doing three days of juice cleansing from three cold-pressed juice plans to prepare for the Fancy Food Show— Spoiler alert, I die at the end.

The budget: $50
The schedule: I’m awake from approximately 12 in the afternoon to 2AM as I’m off from work for the week. During the day, I work out, eat, write, vigorously— exercise in the privacy of my own home, ball so hard motherfuckers wanna fine me, and take long baths. I have fifteen juices for the three days and am going to drink one every two hours, starting at 12, and going from there, at 2PM, 4PM, 6PM, and 8PM, ending my eating at 8PM for the night. I will do a diary entry every two hours. No coffee, alcohol, or refined sugars.

Day 1 

12PM: Starting the day right with a bottle of freshly squeezed orange juice from Evolution Fresh, who graciously helped me with my first day of juices. It’s classic, it’s delicious, and it makes my heart sing. Oh, wait, I can’t drink coffee. That’s not juice. Suddenly, I’m less pleased, and also, my head hurts.

Later, I am told I woke up the Bedfellow in the middle of the night with requests for custom-designed, enormous burgers with four to five layers of meat. Also, all my dreams have meatballs in them.
2PM: I fell into a deep, lethargic sleep at 12:05 after downing the first orange juice. I have awakened now, dreams of packages, exclusive women’s summer camps, dead brown bears, and warped hardwood floors replete in my mind. It is as if my internal clock knows when to alert me to my next juice. 

My mid-afternoon juice is Super Green. I’m not sure if it’s a green juice, but it does have pieces of chlorella, spirulina, and the power of 28 raspberries in it. It is sweet, with a thin texture, and it makes me want to get up and work out. I work out for twenty minutes and then hit the pool. Each accidental sip of chlorinated water makes me feel fuller.

4PM: Something tells me I shouldn’t drive. But the Mango + Fiber tastes so, so good. It reminds me of a Fresh Samantha. Who acquired Fresh Samantha, anyway? It might have been Odwalla. And they sell Odwalla at some Starbucks locations. And Fresh Evolution is sold at Starbucks. Maybe the juices are similar. They taste like childhood. I took another nap today.

 6PM: I’m sweating like the grossest baby alive. The orange juice grew on me. I drank it in the shower and cried a little. It made me happy to realize that it was 7PM when I wrote this, which meant it was a little less than an hour until my next feed. 

 8PM: I watched the Bedfellow eat a cheeseburger and keened quietly on the bed. And then I finished my sweet greens and lemon drink. I didn’t like it the first time I tried it outside of the cleanse, but once it dawned on me that it was my only form of sustenance, I liked it again. I’m developing the Stockholm Syndrome equivalent to juice cleansing. One day down.

I love you, sweet greens and lemon.

CALORIC TOTAL: 1,060

Agua Enerviva Maté Lemonade

My drink preferences change about as often as my hair style, which is to say, never. Yes, as long as the sun shines down on my queercut, so shall I gladly guzzle down a gin and tonic or an Arnold Palmer. The rest can go screw. Or dump themselves down a drain, whichever diss is more injurious to inanimate beverages. Agua Enerviva, a new energy drink designed by two of the higher-ups at Vitamin Water, sent me their line of beverages and I gladly picked this one out of the bunch.

First, a disclaimer. These are technically not Vitamin Waters, but they do have the same bottle shape and design, very similar flavors, and similar nutritional content. That being said, what AE has that Vee-dubs does not is the addition of guarana, for energy and the ability to sound very, very extreme when you mention it in passing to your coworkers.

“Hey, Jess, can you cover my 1PM appointment?”
“Noperino, fellow coworker, I’m too busy siz-ipping on my guarana beverage.”
      – cordially brought to you by the department of Things that Have Never Been Said

The other four flavors of Vitamin Water didn’t compel me like this one, as I love both maté and lemonade. Unfortunately, this wasn’t as well-conceived as I wanted it to be. Maté, as a flavor, is typically strong and earthy, not unlike a good coffee or green tea, with a grassy aftertaste. With lemonade, I figured it would have a sweeter flavor, again, not unlike a gourmet riff off the Arnold Palmer.

This has the right idea, but it’s terribly bland with a monolithic sweetness. The tea flavors are condensed to a mild wheatiness at the end of each sip, the predominant flavor is that of Crystal Light with extra sugar, peevishly acidic and persistent as the commentary of one Mr. Roger Ebert, may he rest in peace. Agua Enerviva has potential, but for now it’s simply playing the role of Affectionate Parody and is missing the mark.