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Friday, June 24, 2011


Here are a few of my random food opinions in list form...
A Sour Apple Tree's blog does this type of thing much better than me, but I like his blog so much, I've decided to swipe it ;)

Best Hamburgers in the Charleston/Huntington area...

1) The Bear's Den-Downtown Charleston, in the basement of the old Daniel Boone hotel

2) Bobby's Bar and Grill-Cross Lanes (Yes, it's a beer joint, but it's not a scary beer joint, and you'll see lots of people there strictly for the food)

3)Five Guys-Pullman Square (Crusty deliciously messy burgers and fantastic fries)

4) Fat Patty's-Barboursville and Huntington (Wish the fries were better, but hey, this is a burger list)

5) Steak and Shake-Barboursville (Royale Burger, 'nuff said)

Best Hot Dogs in the Charleston/Huntington area...

1) Sam's Hot Dogs-Hale St., Charleston

2) Tony's Gold Dome-Kanawha City (Another beer joint, but the dogs are worth the risk)

3) Sam's Club-Southridge Centre (What? Don't laugh. The weiner is Nathan's brand, the chili is Custard Stand, they're HUGE, and ultra-easy on the wallet)

4) The Leonard's-The Mound in South Charleston (Just simple WV dogs, for WV people who know good food)

Sorry Huntington, you're just not a "hot dog town". Hillybilly Hot Dogs, Stewart's, Frost Top, I'm unimpressed with all of those offerings. But I have an open mind, if any of you want to recommend a great dog in Huntington, just leave me a comment letting me know about it.

Thursday, June 23, 2011


I'm pretty sure that I will be spontaneously combusting at any moment now. Actually, if it wasn't for the tropical humidity that is making everything so wet and steamy, I already would have. It's hot. Inhumanely hot. And in weather like this, a young woman's fancy turns to thoughts of ice cream.

Usually, I'd only make ice cream a couple of times between May and September. But, because of my above mentioned facing of a fiery death on what now seems to be a daily basis, I've already made ice cream three times, all of them crazy good batches.

There was the ubiquitous chocolate, made with a healthy infusion of Nutella (I wish I had two hearts so that I could pledge one of them to Nutella *sigh*). Chocolate is the preferred ice cream flavor of Mr. Icequeen, so it has become required summer (and winter) eats in our house.

Then there was the semi-successful-first-try at a peach flavored quart. Not bad, not great either, but I'd be willing to try making that one again.

But then....oh but then, came the one flavor to unite them all....Dulce de Leche w/toasted coconut. Not only is it possibly the best ice cream I've ever made, it may be (insert booming god-like voice here) THE BEST ICE CREAM OF ALL TIME.  Yep, I said it after the first spoonful, and I stand by it now, even though the last drips of it were finished weeks ago. It's not just good, it's not just great. It's (comic geek alert!) the fucking Batman of frozen treats.  This flavor will now be held up as the standard that all other ice creams aspire to. I'm drooling on my keyboard, just thinking about how great it will be when the ice cream and I are together once again.

It tastes like caramel. It tastes like coconut. Sweet monkey dumplings, it tastes like BUTTER! Smooth, and creamy, with tiny flakes of crunchy, nutty coconut throughout. It was sweet, and just a little salty. I've reached food Nirvana, and it's quite lovely.


1 cup half and half

1 tsp salt

1 Tbs vanilla extract

1 Tbs coconut extract

2 cups whipping cream

6 oz cream cheese, softened

14 oz can sweetened condensed milk

13.4 oz can dulce de leche

2 cups coconut, toasted and finely chopped

In large mixing bowl beat the cream cheese until fluffy then gradually add sweetened condensed milk until smooth, then the dulce de leche, beating until all ingredients are smooth. Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Pour the ice cream mixture into a ice cream freezer container and freeze according to manufacturer's directions.

Saturday, June 11, 2011


I may be the luckiest woman in the world. Because of my lifestyle (child-free) and my job (government drone), most of my weekends are lazy, stress-free affairs. Before you start hating me, you need to know that even with all this free time on my hands, I still can't seem to....

Make myself work out on a regular basis
Get to all the backed-up shows on my Tivo
Read all the books and magazines that I have laying around
Get to work on time
Shave my legs as often as I should
Learn a second language
Do as much baking as I'd like
Pay enough attention to my blog.

One thing that there always seems to be time for is the weekend breakfast. You know what I'm talking about. The breakfast that consists of more than a bowl of Corn Pops, or a piece of toast you're frantically shoving down your throat in that futile attempt to make it to work on time.

The weekend breakfast du jour is malted waffles. This is another one of those Baked: Explorations recipes (I'm smitten with this cookbook). These waffles were slightly crisp on the edges, with a very fluffy interior. The recipe requires malted milk powder, which I actually had on hand, and the powder gave it a hint of malty, cocoa like flavor. Me and the hubs were enjoying them so much, that I almost forgot to take a pic for you. The recipe follows the shot.

Malted Waffles

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup malted milk powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 large egg

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1 1/4 cups buttermilk

Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl. Make a well in the center. Whisk the egg in a second bowl. Whisk in the butter and buttermilk. Add the liquid mixture to the flour mixture and stir just until mixed – there will be some lumps. Heat waffle maker as per manufacturer directions and. Brush lightly with oil. Drop batter onto waffle maker and use technique from manufacturer to make the waffles.

Makes five to six waffles.

Up next, Dulce de Leche and toasted coconut ice cream.



In a bleak future where the United States is on the brink of becoming a third world country, and everyone is judged primarily by their credit rating, a poor schlub in Manhattan is just looking for someone to share his pathetic life with.

This is not a chick book. Instead it's a funny, often ironic, look into what could end up being a very real vision of the future, mixed with lots of heartbreak that speaks to the inner loser in all of us.