Sunday, December 19, 2010

Indian Snacks Taste Test, Take 2!

I've actually heard of this stuff. It's described in the first couple of pages of The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri.

"On a stick August evening two weeks before her due date, Ashima Ganguli
stands in the kitchen of a Central Square apartment, combining Rice Krispies
and Planter's Peanuts and chopped red onion in a bowl. She adds salt, lemon
juice, thin slices of green chili pepper, wishing there were mustard oil to pour
into the mix. Ashima has been consuming this concoction throughout her
pregnancy, a humble aproximation of the snack sold for pennies on Calcutta
sidewalks and on railway platforms throughout India, spilling from newspaper
cones. Even now that there is barely space inside her, it is the one thing she
craves. "

Curry leaves? What? I thought curry was a blend of spices. You mean to tell me there is a curry plant and that I could have been growing it and putting it in everything this whole time?
Please leave the membrane talk elsewhere. It just sounds gross.

It looks and smells promising.

Yeah. It's good stuff. Ryan approves. Yes, he is in a robe, with a neck pillow. We like comfy times, O.K.?
Maybe if I'm knocked up in the near future, I'll make Ryan run up to the Indian grocery store down the street and get me some of this. It is really good. A very unique blend of things. I loved the spice. This one bag has gone a long way, too.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Burger Challenge #27

Maribelle's Tavern

Maribelle's is an odd name for a tavern. Ryan thought it was going to be a breakfast place.

That aside, Maribelle's was delicious. We had a Groupon we'd been waiting to use since September.

Instead of apps, we opted for the soup of the day, which for $5, was a generous puddle of Chicken Bacon soup in a spicy tomato-y broth.

Ryan got the turkey sandwich, which was served on a pretzel bun (the new black of bread) and a slather of apple butter. It was awesome. All of the sandwiches are served with a side of cottage cheese, slaw, or kettle chips, or, for $2 extra, you can get a real side, and Ryan chose the sweet potatoes, which were topped with candied pecans and goat cheese. They were the best part of the evening. I wish I could have just gotten a boat of them.
That's not to say that my burger wasn't good. It was. You get the usual burger accouterments and two "toppings," which I chose to be goat cheese and grilled onions. The goat cheese was a little too runny. I should have gone with pepper jack or something a little stickier. I got the grits as a side, which had cheese and jalapenos in them.

This lovely house across the street served as eye candy. It would be awesome to have Maribelle's as the bar you stumble home from.

This is the thirteenth trip of our burger challenge; to eat at all 40 places on Cincinnati Magazine's list of the best burgers in town and Maribelle's Tavern was number 27 on the list, hence the title of this post.

Here is what we've had so far:
# 7 Oakley Pub and Grill
#9 Keystone Bar and Grill
#17 Arthur's
#19 Cafe de Wheels
#24 Zola
#25 Chalk Food + Wine
#26 Five Guys
#28 Doris and Sonny's Homelike Restaurant
#31 Quatman Cafe
#35 Gordo's Cafe
#36 By Golly's
#37 Fatburger

To see the photos from our hamburger Ohio trip, where we checked out the 6 best burgers in the state, according to George Motz, click here.

To see the photos of our Hamburger Honeymoon, click here

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Indian Snacks Taste Test, Take 1!

Ryan's friend, Shashi, asked Ryan to write him a recommendation for a job, and after doing so, gave him a couple of fun, Indian snacks as a little "Thank You."

Ryan and I weren't really sure what to do. We had no idea what the hell they were.

We decided to photo-document the tasting, that's what.

The first item on the list was "Soan Papdi." The description was "traditional Indian Flaky Sweet with Almonds & Pistachios."

How can that be bad? I've eaten a whole whole lot of Indian food in my life, mostly from Ambar India on Ludlow St in Cincinnati, but I've never been to an Indian market to pick up "real" Indian food. I know! For shame!

Foreign nutrition labels are so...unstandardized.

There was an extensive amount of packaging involved.

It reminded Ryan of construction paper.

It broke so easily in our hands.
The flavor was so beautiful and sweet. Really satisfying and filling. Not at all like eating a cupcake or something. Two bites and we were done.
It was very similar to Halva, which I also like and comes in vanilla flavor.

Stay tuned for a savory, spicy snack! I might just have to go to an Indian store and see what they have!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

To the Bat Cave, Y'all!


Spotted in Carrollton, Ky on I-75. It was being hauled by a Tonka truck. Made our November.