Monthly Archives: May 2015

Not Clickbait: 74 Reasons to Grill Your Salad

74 Reasons to Grill Your Salad

1. It tastes good.

2. It tastes, like, really good.

3. It’s summer, so that’s a reason.

4. Bon Appetit’s editor said to do it. Bon Appetit is like Oprah. If they say to do it, you should do it.

5. Vegetables are good! Fire is good! Put them together, even better!

6. Salads are good! Grills are good! Put them together, even better!

7. How many do I have left? Oh, for fuck’s sake.

8. You can do all kinds of salads on the grill. Like this sexy lady. Steak and grilled scallions and beets and stuff. A real show stopper. Frankly, I ate most of this myself.

Wut.

Wut.

9. And this one, with my funky fresh friend anchovy paste. Cause funk is good! Salt is good! Put them together, even better!

Uptown funk you up no that was stupid pretend I didn't do that.

Uptown funk you up no that was stupid pretend I didn’t say that.

10. And this salad that I made up with fresh seasonal veggies and eat alongside the world’s largest burger. (If only someone had seen me unhinge my jaw to eat it like the true basilisk that I am.)

Salad and burger, a match made in heaven.

Salad and burger, a match made in heaven.

I also took a picture of it on the grill. I left my shadow in there so you knew i was really taking the picture.

FullSizeRender (1)

11. Ok, that had to be about 70 reasons.

12. Wow. Not there yet? I guess I’ll keep going.

13. It’s this list satire funny yet?

14. What about now?

15. Or now?

16. I love running a joke into the ground til it’s so unfunny that it becomes funny again.

17. Probably isn’t funny again yet.

18. Probably not yet either.

19. The thing is, I’m tired of all the clickbait out there. And I’m tired of the things that pass as journalism. Without perspective or POV or writing style. Or humor.

20. ….it’s a little funny now though, right?

21. The long and the short of it is, the grill adds a different dimension to your veg. Sweetness in corn is amplified tenfold. It adds smoke to everything, but somehow more to asparagus. It adds char. It adds heat and warmth. Suddenly, you have new temperatures to play with as well as textures in your salad.

22. So don’t be afraid to mix it up. You will undoubtably find something excited.

23-73. More grilled salad recipes

74. Eh? Sort of funny?

Grilled Steak Salad with Beets from Bon Appetit

Aioli:

  • ½ cup beef or chicken stock or low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 large egg yolk*
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 small garlic clove, finely grated
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Salad:

  • 1 pound tri-tip, New York strip, or skirt steak
  • 1 garlic clove, halved
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 bunch scallions or ramps
  • 1 bunch spicy greens (such as arugula or mizuna)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 3 beets, peeled, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
For Aioli:
Bring stock to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium-low heat; cook until reduced by half, about 5 minutes.Whisk egg yolk and mustard in a bowl. Whisking constantly, gradually add oil, drop by drop at first, until mixture is very thick. Whisk in lemon juice and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Stir in stock.
For Salahd:
Preheat oven to 200°. Prepare grill for medium-high heat (or heat a grill pan over medium-high). Rub steak with cut sides of garlic and 1 Tbsp. oil; season with salt and pepper. Grill, turning several times, until lightly charred and medium-rare (an instant-read thermometer should register 130°), 14–16 minutes. Transfer to a rack set inside a rimmed baking sheet.

Meanwhile, toss scallions on another baking sheet with 1 Tbsp. oil; season with salt and pepper. Grill, turning often, until tender, about 4 minutes. Transfer to rack with beef and keep warm in oven.

Arrange greens on a platter; season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with lemon juice and 1 Tbsp. oil. Toss beets in a bowl with vinegar and remaining 1 Tbsp. oil; season with salt and pepper. Arrange over greens. Slice steak ½” thick; top greens with scallions and meat. Pour any juices over; season with salt. Serve with aioli.

*Raw egg is not recommended for the elderly, pregnant women, children under 4, and people with weakened immune systems.

Grilled Romaine Salad from FoodNetwork

  • 2 heads romaine lettuce
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Citrus Caesar Vinaigrette, recipe follows
  • Parmigiano-Reggiano

Citrus Caesar Vinaigrette:

  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 to 2 lemons)
  • 2 tablespoons anchovy paste | I used anchovy filets minced.
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Directions
Preheat a grill to medium-high.

Rinse and pat dry the lettuce. Cut the 2 heads in half lengthwise. Brush surface with olive oil and grill about 4 to 5 minutes total, turning occasionally. Place each wedge on a salad plate and drizzle with Citrus Caesar Vinaigrette or your favorite Caesar dressing. With a vegetable peeler, shave some pieces from a wedge of Reggiano-Parmigiano over each salad and serve.

Citrus Caesar Vinaigrette:
Place all ingredients in a pint jar with a lid. Secure the lid, then shake to blend. Store, covered, in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Grilled Corn, Asparagi & Cherry Tomato Salad

  • 2 ears of corn
  • 1 bunch of asparagus
  • Cherry Tomatoes on the vine
  • 1/2 vidalia onion, diced
  • Olive oil
  • Red Wine Vinegar
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Rub corn, asparagus, and cherry tomatoes with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Char on the grill to your desired charification. 6-7 minutes for the corn and asparagus. 3-4 minutes for the tomatoes, until they burst. Toss with the diced onion, drizzle with olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper to taste. Eat it up.

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An Open Letter: Dear Awkward Delivery Guy

via TheImpersonals

via TheImpersonals

Dear Delivery Guy,

Well, this is awkward.

You’re here again at my home. I’m not wearing a bra and I’m paying you for intimate services rendered: the delivery of my dinner.

But the worst part is that you made it really awkward. And that’s saying something because I’m usually the one to make a situation awkward.

When you came here with your Thai food delivery, you handed it to me and said, “oh, you again.” Well, shit. Yes, I just got your restaurant’s delivery a few nights ago. But I was craving it again. So I ordered it again.

Is this because you gave me a free cream soda the other day? I told you that I didn’t order it. Because who orders cream soda? And what self-respecting restaurant has it in stock?

I suppose I should use my words. When you say “oh, you again,” it made me feel like you were judging me, Delivery Guy. Because I’m pretty sure you were.

I cook a lot of nights, but last night just I didn’t feel like it last night. I felt tired. I just wanted someone to bring me dinner. But wait a minute, I don’t owe you anything. Except the money for the food, of course. And a tip.

So, here’s a tip. Keep your opinions to yourself. In the world of food service-as-sex, delivery is basically an escort service. So, a little discretion would be most appreciated.

Now, you get out of here. I’m going to let to slip into something a little more comfortable and get a little spicy with this pad thai.

Sincerely,

Bethany

 

Sidenote: I found this image of the Thai Food delivery guy on a website called The Impersonals. It was on a letter called Dear Thai Food Delivery Guy Who Recognized Me At The Airport: Please Don’t. Please read it, it made me laugh right out loud. I’m so glad to see that in these ever-changing times, some things will always be the same: we never want to talk to the Delivery Guy. Some social codes are not meant to be broken.

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Breaktheist: Yogurt Taste Test

I’m a breaktheist.

I don’t believe in any one breakfast. I do believe that breakfast exists, though. Perhaps I am breaknogstic.

Yeah…that doesn’t sound as good.

I’ve been on a real yogurt kick lately. This was after a serious granola kick, an avocado toast kick, and a granola bar kick. You’d think I was a Rockette. #dadjoke

But what yogurt to eat? There are so many choices. So, when I was at the Fresh Market last week and decided to buy 5 yogurt brands that I’ve never tried before and test them out for you.

YOU’RE WELCOME.

(One time, I said something silly to a friend and then said, “you’re welcome.” And his reply was “I did not say thank you.” Couldn’t be mad at it.)

I tried some yogurt so you didn’t have to. Say your prayers, people, and forgive me. My stream of consciousness is below.

It was really hard to keep the yogurts from rolling away. #realtalk

It was really hard to keep the yogurts from rolling away during this picture.

OhMyYog! with Gingered Pear

  • Well, “OhMyYog!” is not a thing that people say.
  • Rich and creamy. Has a unique flavor. Better than the basic fruit in your ushe yogurt.
  • 3 layers? I really can’t tell. Just seems like two.
  • This reminds me of the old fruit on the bottom Breyers yogurt but better.
  • Try again? Yeah, I’d try it again. But I shan’t ever say “OhMyYog!”
Seriously, no one says that.

Seriously, no one says that.

So Delicious Dairy Free Yogurt in Vanilla

  • Not at all appealing visually.
  • “Try the gray stuff, it’s delicious. Don’t believe me? Ask the dishes!”
  • Super sweet, with a weird after taste. Nope. Can’t eat this. Nope.
  • Abandoned yogurt-ship after 4 bites. Went to a delicious, delicious Noosa I had in the fridge.
  • Try again? Never say never. But never.
What. Is. This.

What. Is. This.

Blue Hill in Butternut Squash

  • Saw this yogurt on Ana Gasteyer’s Instagram. We’re basically best friends.
  • It smells sort of like Thanksgiving. I’m sort of excited. Sort of scared. I feel like Jessie Spano.
  • It tastes good. A bit tart in the finish. It walks the line between sweet and savory.
  • It’s kind of weird. I sort of gagged on the first spoonful, thus bringing to life the phrase “gag me with a spoon.” It’s so weird to have butternut squash in this super creamy, dairy vehicle. But, it kind of tasted good. I’m conflicted.
  • Try again? Yeah, maybe. Maybe. Maybe in a savory application.

Petite Creme in Cherry

  • It’s low fat yogurt, made with nonfat milk. Is it going to be wimpy?
  • Yeahhhhh. It’s sort of wimpy. It’s light, it’s creamy. But I’m not sated. It feels like snack yogurt. But it’s good.
  • Try again? Sure, why not.

The Epic Seed, Greek Yogurt with Chia Seeds in Peach

  • I am the most apprehensive about this one, but…I really rather like it. WHO KNEW! I’d never had chia seeds before.
  • The texture of these fruity seedy things reminds me of fish roe. Snappy with a bit of a bite, but the flavor is the opposite of fishy. Light and fruity. Great textural and flavor complement to the Greek yogurt.
  • Try again? Chyea. This one has been a revelation.
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Brinner and Jokes: Baked Eggs with Spinach and Leeks

A joke for you, dear readers.

Let me set the scene: I’m talking to MyFakeFoodDad on the telephone. I’m telling him about what I ate for dinner.

Me: I made baked eggs with spinach and leeks for dinner. You just cook the spinach and leeks down and then crack some eggs and bake them in the oven. Breakfast for dinner.

Dad: Did you use a colander?

(long pause)

Me: …No….why?

Dad: Because it leaks.

Ba dum bum cha.

My reaction was a lot of laughter and I said, “DAMN IT, how did I not see that coming?!?!?”

I like jokes.

Last night, I made some baked eggs from Tasting Table. I’ve been following them on Instagram for a minute. But I didn’t know anything about them. It was difficult to find their About section on the website, but their brand manifesto is a very lovely piece about who they are.

“Tasting Table is a website and newsletter for culinary enthusiasts. We eat high and low to bring you discerning dining advice, recipes you can trust and news you can use from the world of food and drink. We’re an opinionated gang of always curious, anchovy-loving, order-one-of-everything-for-the-table epicurean obsessives.”

As a girl who bought anchovy filets and a tube of anchovy paste with no immediate plans to use them, I relate and appreciate.

…Maybe I’ve overdone it on the anchovy.

I started browsing through their catalogue of rather drool-worthy recipes. I settled on baked eggs with spinach and leaks leeks because it seemed like an easy weeknight meal.

And guess what? It was. Easy. Full of bright flavor, full of veggies. The only thing that was very strange is that my eggs did not bake at all after either 10 or 12 minutes in the oven, so I broiled them for 2-3 minutes. Just long enough for the whites to get opaque but keep that beautiful runny yolk.

What can I said. I like yolks.

Oh dang.

Oh dang.

Baked Eggs with Spinach and Leeks from Tasting Table

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium leek (white and light green parts only), chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 8 cups baby spinach
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • 4 large eggs
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • ½ teaspoon finely chopped thyme
  • ½ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • ¼ teaspoon Aleppo pepper or crushed red pepper flakes

Preheat the oven to 350°.

In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter with the olive oil. Add the leeks and cook, stirring occasionally, until they are soft and tender but not browned, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and spinach, season with salt, and cook until the spinach has wilted, 2 to 3 minutes.

Set 2 small ovenproof dishes onto a baking sheet. Divide the spinach-leek mixture equally between the dishes. Make 2 indentations in each dish, leaving about a 1-inch gap in between. Carefully crack each egg into an indentation. Pour 2 tablespoons of cream into each dish and season with salt.

Place the baking sheet into the oven and bake until the whites are just set but the yolks are still runny, 10 to 12 minutes. | I broiled the eggs under high for 2-3 minutes to the same degree of doneness. Watch them closely, though. They go over quickly.

Top the baked eggs with the thyme, lemon zest and Aleppo pepper, and serve.

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Mid-Week Malaise: Fried Oreos and Rosé

It’s the middle of the week and I have that mid-week malaise. It’s too soon to get excited about this weekend. So I will reminisce about last weekend. And last weekend, I had fried Oreos and rosé on the porch. Did you? No?

Well, that’s a shame.

I’m not going to say that I won.

…but I think it’s pretty clear.

My friend Rebecca came down from DC on Saturday and we had just a splendid weekend. I don’t want to get all Mother’s Day-Facebook-post-sentimental about it, but we became fast friends eight years ago working in our first jobs together. You’ve heard of the saying, “make new friends, but keep the old, one is silver and the other’s gold.” This one is platinum.

Alright, I know, that was REALLY sappy. But I stand by it.

Ernie, as I sometimes call her (her maiden name is Ernst), came in gunning for a blog-worthy weekend and a blog-worthy weekend we had. She arrived on Saturday and we went to the Strawberry Street Festival, which was quite literally across the street from my house. I thought this street festival was going to be like, a tent with a guy doing balloon animals. He may or may not be out on a parole violation. You may or may not want to let your kids talk to him. Not so, my friends. There were several delicious food vendors, activities for the kids (bouncy houses! parrots! seriously, parrots!), some really artists and cool local shops, like Love This. They sell cool pieces, like jewelry, shoes, etc., for a great cause.

ART

ART

This is my new art from Lightbox Print Co. They do hand drawn art of buildings in The Fan. These are restaurants in The Fan and at this point I’ve only eaten at 2 of them. Challenge accepted.

And yes, we had fried oreos, drank a bottle of rose, and sat on the porch.

A match made in heaven

A match made in heaven

A woman walked by and said, “God, that looks great.”

You’re right, perfect stranger. Standing tall on the wings of my dreams…nothing’s gonna stop me now.

Next stop on our tour de food was Proper Pie Co. This is another reason why I love Rebecca. I mentioned that there was a pie shop in town and she said, “well…should we go there?” Yes. Yes we should. Proper Pie Co. is all pies, all the time. They have New-Zealand style savory hand pies, plus sweet pies. This place is dope. (Is that cool to say? I don’t know.) We split a Thai Butternut Squash Hand pie and picked up a piece of coconut cream and peach and blackberry cobbler to split later. Spoiler alert: they were absolutely scrumptious. Go there now, people of Richmond. Who am I kidding, you probably already have.

PIe dios mio.

PIe dios mio.

We went to a minor league baseball game, which was really just a vehicle for us to eat hot dogs and curly fries. Our local team is the The Richmond Flying Squirrels. So, let me correct myself. The baseball game was a vehicle to eat hot dogs and squirrely fries (seriously). I really impressed Rebecca by knowing who Carl Yazstremzki is. She’ll say she wasn’t that impressed, but I know she REALLY was.

On Sunday, I made brunch.

I love you, brunch.

I love you, brunch.

While everyone else was posting really lovely, effusive stuff about their moms on Facebook, Rebecca and I watched the first episode of Bloodline, a pretty fucked up family drama/thriller on Netflix. You know, we had to balance it all out.

Stop whatever you’re doing and watch Bloodline right now. Because Kyle Chandler is in it. I’ve been a Kyle Chandler fan (we call ourselves ‘Fandlers’…we’re working on the name) since Early Edition. Remember that show? With the blind lady and the cat. He’d get tomorrow’s news today and he’d have to try to change it. It was a terrible concept. When I was younger, I asked my dad if the actress who played the blind lady was really blind. And my dad won’t let my live this down to this very day. I’m 30, you guys. But here’s the thing. I was in 6th grade, so I should’ve probably known better. Embarrassing.

Anyway, Bloodline! It’s a Netflix original. The cast is incredible. Kyle Chandler (obviously), Sissy Spacek, Sam Shepherd, Linda Cardellini, some people you’ve never heard of from Broadway but who have won Tony Awards and are incredible. The setting is insanely beautiful. It’s so well shot. It is INTENSE. I’ve seen all thirteen episodes and I actually screamed into my hands one time. But it’s seriously that good. So, stop watching whatever you’re watching and watch this.

And then as quickly as she came to Richmond, Rebecca went back up north. To the land of……..well, shit. I don’t even know. What’s in DC again? Anything?

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Brand New Man: The Hamburglar

Breaking news from McDonald’s on Mashable yesterday: the Hamburglar is back and he’s pretty hot.

Robble Robble indeed. Via Mashable

Robble Robble indeed. Via Mashable

Yes, the Hamburglar is a human man, he’s married, he’s got a human kid, he owns a house and he’s smokin’.

Is this RULL weird to anyone else?

The Hamburglar should look like Rocky Dennis.

Correct

Correct  Via Mcdonalds.Wikia.com

He should not look like Joe Manganiello.

Incorrect. via TheHollywoodBillboard

Incorrect.
via TheHollywoodBillboard

I should not want to sleep with the Hamburglar. Cause I never wanted to before. (Sorry, Dad.)

McDonald’s VP of Marketing, Joel Yashinsky, said something curious about The Hamburglar’s new look. “He’s had some time to grow up a bit and has been busy raising a family in the suburbs and his look has evolved over time.”

Watch this spot, please.

Ok, fine. I will suspend all of my disbelief about his beautiful looks.

But…. he’s had some time to grow up. And he’s been raising a family in the ‘burbs.

Ok, cool. I believe that people can change. Maybe he got arrested after a string of burger robberies. Maybe he’s out on parole. Maybe he got rehabbed in prison. Maybe he got his degree in jail. Worked in the kitchens. Found religion. I don’t know.

Yet, the SECOND he hears that McDonald’s has created the new Sirloin Third Pound burger (on an ad playing on a radio WITH A CASSETTE PLAYER), he drops his unbelievably clean grill spatula.

Get the mask out of storage. He’s got one more job to pull. 

McDonald’s is really perpetuating some ugly truths about the recidivism rate in this country.

(Hat tip, T. Stowe Nelson, MSNBC, and Lockup.)

There’s another spot, too. Equally unfathomable.

I would call this dude a sociopath.

Going back to the quote from the Marketing VP. The Hamburglar has grown up. He’s matured. Um, clearly not. Clearly he hasn’t moved on AT ALL. His name is Hamilton B. Urglar (if Wikipedia is to be believed.) Why HOW would he be able to do anything but burgle hamburgers? He couldn’t become an account executive or a graphic designer or own a skateboard shop. It’s literally in his chemistry to steal hamburgers.

To me, this is another attempt at nostalgia done weirdly by a big brand. It’s too soon to tell if it’s done wrong, but I can’t say with any confidence that it’s going well. It’s certainly not meeting the CEO Steve Easterbrook’s challenge to build “brand excitement.”

I do not want to eat a sirloin triple burger.

That Hamburglar sure looks tasty, though.

Probably not the kind of excitement they were going for.

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On Life and Death: Josh Ozersky

Dearest readers, please be warned. I’ve put on my serious hat today.

It is a cruelty of life that you may not find something that you love until it is gone.

I didn’t know of Josh Ozersky until he was gone. He was a food writer who died on Monday in Chicago. From what I’ve read about him, he was both uniquely talented and supremely difficult. One of the rare people whose difficulty was accepted because his talent was so profound.

I started reading his writing yesterday when Saveur reposted this piece from 2013, written by Josh about his father, David. It’s beautiful, sad and supremely honest. It’s worth every minute of your time.

And now, I can’t stop reading. There’s a touching tribute and recent articles compiled by The Wall Street Journal, sent to me by my dad (surprise, surprise).

I know very little of the man, but I love food and words and he seemed to relish both. If you can read (which I’m pretty sure you can), be sure to read these pieces.

Don’t worry, dear readers, I’ll be back to my regularly scheduled frivolity shortly.

Life may be cruel, but what is life without silliness?

That would hardly be life at all.

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A Treatise: How to Make the Perfect Cheese Plate

A comprehensive guide to making the perfect cheese plate.

Step one: Buy cheese.
This should seem obvious, as this is a lesson on cheese plate-makery. But some of you aren’t that bright.
No, no nooooo, not YOU. You’re GREAT. Have you done something different with your hair?! It looks so shiny.
Other “real” sources of food/entertaining media are going to give you some practical advice for how to tackle this subject. Go for different flavors, textures, types of cheese (cow/goat/other) (what the shit is the other?) (oh god, I hope it isn’t pig).
But I’m going to tell you a few things they’re not going to tell you.
A) Buy what you like. There ain’t no shame in simplicity. So get something that you crave. Need to work on the cheap? Kraft singles cut into quarters, Cracker Barrel block of extra sharp cheddar, Easy Cheese. Serve with Chicken in a Biskit crackers and bologna. Mic drop.
B) This is probably a really controversial move in the world fromage but I’m going to say it: test a new cheese on your plate.
I KNOW. This is basically the wildest idea since sliced cheese.
You’ll never know if you like it til you try something new. Now, this is risky. I once bought a cheese that sounded delicious in theory and tasted like cigarette butts, so I threw that shit out. Which was frustrating because it was a waste of money. But, now I know: Cigarette Butt Goat’s Cheese is not for me. I should’ve probably looked at the name before I bought it…
This is where it’s great to find samples wherever you can: at the local Farmer’s Market, your gro sto, wherever. At my local Kroger, there is a Murray’s Cheese Bar outpost and they have bins of cheeses for $5 and under. It’s a relatively inexpensive way to try new cheeses. You know, if you live in Richmond by the Carytown Kroger. #specific #rva
Step two: Pair that cheese with some stuff.
Eloquently said, Novak.
Bring some other players to the key party cheese plate. This is a way to bring some other textures, flavors, some more salt, some more sweet to the table. Olives are always a welcome sight on my cheese plate because their brininess typically hits my palate in a different way than the cheeses do. Throw in some meats, some grainy mustard, some tart jam and you’ve got yourself a stew going.
Cheese, please.

Cheese, please.

Step Three: Let your cheese sit on the counter for an hour before you serve.
This is really the only rule I live by.
Not, like, in my life.
I live by PLENTY of rules. Like, traffic rules. And a lot of social conventions. But this is my one hard and fast cheese plate rule. I really should’ve been more specific. I’ll add “be more specific” to the ole rule book.
When you pull cheese from the fridge, it has a completely different texture and taste than when it sits on the counter for an hour or so. This is one of those things that I heard and was like, “well, that is utter rubbish.”
And then I tried it and was like, “well, clearly I am utter rubbish.” The cheese is genuinely so much better after the chill has come off. You get all the nuances.
So there you have it. Three easy steps to make the perfect cheese plate. Which was always perfect because it was made by you. (Cue the Full House-style audience reaction: awwwwwwww).
Make yourself happy. Eat some cheese.
That’s a rule to live by if ever I’ve heard one.
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