Archive for November 20th, 2009

Dinner, man. Am I right?

I’ve had some pretty complicated meals these past few days. First of all, I have altered my diet ever so slightly (and it’s mostly mental) recently – by that I mean, I have decided to prepare for a week of food detox, and I want to ease my way into it, so I’m currently on a “no booze, no caffeine” routine as an easy way to start the detox. But when I say it’s mostly mental, what I mean is that while I have the very best of intentions, I don’t always adhere strictly (but in my head, I’m still allowed to say I’m doing it, full steam ahead!).

So in the past 6 days of this pre-cleanse, I have had one beer, a half a glass of Champagne, and one Coke Zero. Three units of no-no beverages, but in my defense, the beer was organic, the Coke was out of headachy necessity, and the Champagne was because I totally forgot about the pre-cleanse when I was offered it and then I couldn’t be rude and not finish it. Eventually I’ll be eliminating refined flour and sugar and meat (which, again, was supposed to be part of this week’s agenda but the deli where I got my breakfast sandwich yesterday ONLY had pre-made sandwiches with bacon on them and who am I to custom order?) so all of this is just prep for the week of December 7th when I go all in with the cleanse. Yes, I need three weeks to psych myself up for this. Don’t judge.

Last night I went to dinner with Old Pal Matt, and I suggested we go to a local, sustainable, vegetarian, buzzword-a-riffic restaurant I’d never been to before.  This was inspired by the cleanse, and also because Matt is game for whatever I tell him to do. He’s a good friend that way. After we got our food…um, remember in L.A. Story when Harris goes to a chic Beverly Hills restaurant, L’Idiot and gets like, a pea and a chive and that’s his entree? I kid you not when Matt and I ordered two “small plates” and a flat bread and we got, roughly, a pea and a chive. We ordered ravioli as a starter and we got TWO. Two ravioli total. One per person. Then we ordered Brussels sprouts and there were, ok, like what amounted to about 6 of them, but chopped and tossed in a cold dressing. And we got a flatbread that was less hearty than an English Muffin. Without the benefit of nooks or crannies. I dare you to say the word cranny without finding some kind of alternative meaning or hilarity in it. Hot cranny mess.

It was all delicious, and I wish I had taken a picture  just so  the rest of you could laugh along with me (but again, I’m no food blogger so I didn’t want to be That Guy in the restaurant, plus the couple next to us was having some kind of argument and I made eye contact with the girlfriend while she was huffing at her boyfriend and that made me feel awkward and ready to bolt as soon as we paid our organic, recycled paper and soy inky bill.) Unsatisfied, we made a pilgrimage to the antithesis of sustainable, healthy, cleanse-worthy cuisine, Momofuku Milk Bar, which I have gone on about before. We had tried to be healthy, good people and when that ended up going to shit, we became our real selves an gorged on Candy Bar Pie, Cinnamon Bun Pie, and Donut flavored soft serve. I have yet to, er, cleanse, today. Paging Dr. Oz!

Two nights ago was another dinner disaster that angered me for no good reason, it was just a comical turn of events in the kitchen that was not so funny at the time: I tried to make a rice stir fry with vegetables and this cilantro sauce from Epicurious, and after realizing that my rice was smoking and burning (note to home cooks, don’t forget you’re making rice!) and not wanting to take another 20-30 minutes to make a new batch, I decided to bust out the soba noodles that have been living in my pantry for a year. And when I say living… Yeah. There was some kind of cocoon-type bug skin thing in the noodles that I noticed tight before dumping them into  the boiling water and I couldn’t eat them knowing that a bug was living in them for who knows how long. I’m sure I eat bugs and mites and awful things daily, unbeknownst to me, but that’s ok because, in the immortal words of Exposé, what you don’t know won’t hurt you. What you DO know will kill you and make you wretch. It was right around then that I actually tried the cilantro sauce (to be fair, I didn’t have the full amount of soy sauce called for so I just added salt too) and good god, y’all, it was so gross. And I’m not going to be one of those Epicurious commenters that gives something a One-Fork rating but then clarifies in my review “I made this by substituting applesauce for the butter and halved the sugar and added some pepper. This recipe was terrible. I can’t understand what went wrong.” But somehow, I got it wrong and it was sucky.

At Home Dinner Trauma Specialist decided to take matters into his own hands and he ordered Middle Eastern for us, and while it was delicious, I still had stir-fry rage, which I got over by watching Top Chef (beat it, Eli! Go home to your faux-hawked BFF Richard Blais). So. Rage! What? Sigh. Let’s hope this cleanse will purify my  ♥  as well as my :