To celebrate THE most wonderful time of the year, I made a little short video. I mean, who doesn't love Oscar Season!! Yay, America will be fine! Yay!!!!!
Because I do. We made eye contact on instagram like, a month ago, and I don't even remember how we started talking but there were a lot of butterflies and then all of a sudden I was holding it in my hand...okay this is getting weird.
If you are looking for a gift for someone, buy them this book! Why, you may ask?
Them's the turkey meatballs!
In conclusion, the book is full of TONS of recipes that are easy-to-follow and delicious and actually fun (and not scary) to make, Turshen is a dream of an imaginery friend/chef mentor, and it's been a month and this cookbook and I are still in the honeymoon phase.
I hope you enjoy it as much as I do! Thank you Julia! (Waaaaait, should I make every recipe in this book and then make a movie about it where it cuts between me spilling half a bottle of olive oil in my oven and almost lighting my apartment on fire and then back to Julia drinking PBR in her cool house with her cool wife eating leftover roasted chicken and laughing??? Definitely!)
Then I have the perfect solution for you! New York Magazine, or, more specifically NYMag.com, has just launched this new online shopping feature called The Strategist. It's basically a bunch of lists of amazing shit you never knew existed but need to buy immediately. LIKE LITERALLY NOW. Within three minutes of looking at the site this morning I proceeded to purchase two bottles key lime juice and a face razor for women from Japan.
It's perfect and it's going to be all our nightmares.
I just bought a $5 keychain at TJ Maxx that looks like Cher's pen (you know, THE PEN) and I've never felt happier. It's the little things, guys. Hope everyone's Wednesdays are going fabulous!
I was so excited for the premiere of Divorce. Like many a woman who spent countless high school nights back in 2003 clutching a sharp-cornered, easter-egg colored plastic Sex and the City DVD box set and daydreaming about one day living in NYC, wearing a tutu and "working in PR", I consider the indelible Sarah Jessica Parker (aka SJP, aka perfume mogul/shoe mogul/Ferris’ wife) not only a national hero but...also, like...sort of a friend? (And yes, she—okay, fine her characters—kind of annoy me sometimes, too, but let’s be honest, all our friends annoy us, and we annoy them. HERLO, IT’S CALLED FRIENDSHIP.)
But then I read the reviews of Divorce, because I’m a dork and I always read reviews, and they were all sort of….unenthused. Sort of meh. Sort-of-to-definitely cranky pants. They basically made it sound like Divorce was going to be really depressing and a total downer and that it would, like, make you feel—hypothetically—the way you would if the Republican nominee for President of the United States was caught on tape saying he enjoyed grabbing married women’s pussies and getting away with it and freaking MIKE PENCE of all people is going to have the nerve to still stand around taking long drawn-out pauses between sentences and talking about God and forgiveness and pretending that he’s okay with this shit?? (I really CAN'T with Gov. Pence. Because, yes, when stupid assclowns who are one step away from Robert Dursting their sons do sexist racist gross shit it really upsets me—duh—but what REALLY GETS ME GOING is the people around him, who SHOULD KNOW BETTER pretending it’s okay (I’m looking at you IVANKA WHY WHY WHY) ESPECIALLY when all they do is talk about how important their faith and morality are to them. Sorry Pence, but no, I don’t believe you think this is a good Christian man. Like, dude, come on.)
ANYHOW….back to Divorce! I watched it, and it’s so great! I loved it so much. So much, in fact, that I’m going to make a list about what I loved about it, because I heard that lists are cool and people like them? Like something about Buzzfeed or BJ Novak or something?
THINGS I LOVED ABOUT THE DIVORCE PILOT (duh, some vague spoilers ahead)
I was born in Massachusetts, and therefore am contractually obligated by God to be obsessed with any and all things Kennedy, and WOW, can I say I am so excited for this movie. How beautiful and chilling is this trailer? I feel more cultured just looking at the damn freeze frame. And yes Jackie looks like it's going to be hyper-super-duper stylized (it's also not a "traditional" biopic in that it takes place only over the few days following the President's assassination) but I think that's what is going to make the film so great.
In terms of Natalie Portman playing Jackie Kennedy, I think it's a genius casting move. Portman is definitely much more of a shrimp than the First Lady was, which I find a tad bit distracting but, like, whatever, because Portman definitely DOES have that intimidating I-am-so-beautiful-and-chic-and-rich-and-yet-maybe-slightly-depressed air about her that Jackie had....sorry Katie Holmes, but your crooked Ohio smile is far too joyful for these shenanigans. And that ACCENT—totally insane, yes, but all I know is that whenever I go to the JFK museum in Boston (which I obviously visit on the reg while rotating through my vast collection of pillbox hats) and hear old recordings of Jackie Kennedy speaking, she actually DOES sound like that. (All the old people be shaking their heads, like, yep, she damn sure did.) It's pretty cray. Like, whhhhy did women used to speak that way? Should it make a comeback?
"But make suuuure you get me the coooooald brew at Dunkin' Donuts dahling and not that regularrrr," she said in a bizarre girlish whisper befitting a girl of age four before tightening the silk scarf around her neck and checking Instagram with a glazed over sex look in her perfectly eye-linered eye. Is this way of speaking at least better than vocal fry? Or wait is that vocal fry? Hmm, I haven't had breakfast and now I want fries...
Whatever, the most important thing to know about the movie is that Greta Gerwig is in it, and therefore that means it actually will be perfect. And the clothes. Not to be all like that....but THE CLOTHES. That pale green dress always kills me.
Anyway, hey, it's almost the weekend!
I was getting into bed last night, quaking with anxiety over the VP debate (people interrupting each other makes me VURY comfortable) when I turned and asked my boyfriend if he'd be interested in seeing The Girl on the Train over the next few weeks.
(I read the book in a crazy daze in like 24 hours this past summer and have no absolutely no recollection if it was good or not.)
"Yeah, maybe," he replied. "Who's in it?"
"Only the world's greatest human being, Emily Blunt. And Justin Theroux-
"Justin Theroux? You know, Jennifer Anniston's husband? He's on The Leftov-
"Babe," he said, settling into bed to check the fantasy football crop circles predictions on his iPhone. "I have no idea who Jennifer Aniston's husband is."
That's funny, I thought. No idea who Jennifer Anniston's husband is! Hahaha!! I began to lean forward slightly and laugh wildly, as if I was at an InStyle party in a sequined halter dress with my very tan and black-clothes loving husband who also co-wrote Tropic Thunder and is from D.C.
Like, I'm sorry, but what? I mean, you think you know someone, and then you realize you have NO IDEA what's going on in their head, ever, and that they probably haven't ever read a single article about Jennifer Aniston in their life and have zero clue that Sia sang at her wedding and then she and J-Tha went on their honeymoon with the Batemans! Men are weird.
Have you ever been watching an NBA game or the Olympics and thought to yourself “I wonder what it would like if a normal person was shown competing next to these people? You know, like some regular dude (fine me) who just ate half a Domino's pizza and is about to start clipping their toenails and then suddenly they’re thrown into the game and expected to not even defend LeBron but just, like, keep up with him?” I think sometimes we don’t appreciate these long jumpers, tele skiers, Serena Williams-s of the world—what have you—because they make it all look too easy. We need some perspective. This is also how I feel about cooking.
Example: below is a photograph of the finished polenta I made for my boyfriend last week, while cooking a Real Simple recipe I found called “Pork Chops with Sauteed Apple and Polenta.
And here’s the magazine’s photo of the final meal, below. Our polenta looks somewhat different, right? Just a little? (I’m still unclear on what polenta actually is by the way, but I suppose that’s a different issue entirely.)
Basically, food styling is the death of me. I really think all our lives would be better if a) Donald Trump doesn’t become President and b) every cookbook/blog was forced to update their content to also contain a “real meal prepared by a real person who still isn’t that good at chopping shallots yet and whose boyfriend is better at making the bed then she is” photo. Just to, like, lower our expectations a little. We don’t all need to see the Simone Biles photo of the pork and sauteed apples Real Simple! (Though I suppose the argument that if they ran the photo of my hack-job polenta in the magazine people would probably gag and throw the Real Simple down and vow to never cook again...but still—maybe something halfway?)
Anyhow, I solved the problem of the ruined grain (I think I just bought the wrong kind? Like, it wasn’t instant? Seriously, what is polenta?) by taking a cue from my girl Ina G. and just straight up lying to my boyfriend. You know, that whole “never let them see you sweat!” thing, or whatever. Like, if you’re holding a dinner party and you burn the roast for six people you just say it was planned all along with a “throaty” laugh and then hand everyone a martini and a handful of stale nuts and tell them a pizza is on its way? I feel like I read that somewhere once...but yeah, I just lied to my boyfriend and said we were pulling a Tom and Gisele-like cleanse and eating only meat and vegetables for dinner. (Later, when he saw the left-for-dead polenta floating aimlessly on the stovetop he yelped and asked me “what was I going to do with that thing.”)
Known non-polenta eater
The truth is I do really want to get better at cooking and not ruining recipes. So I recently signed up for Home Chef, aka one of those meal delivery services that send you three meals a week in a box and everything is prepackaged into perfect portions and there are step-by-step guides as to how to prepare everything so you barely have to think about what to make for dinner and can focus solely on how terrified you are of Donald Trump Jr. becoming Secretary of the Treasury. (And no, this is not a #sponsored post for Home Chef, though, believe me, I would LOVE nothing more than to ever have the chance to write #sponsoredcontent for this blog. Like, all I want to do is pose in front of exposed brick somewhere in Beacon Hill while holding a latte and wearing a pair of Chico's chandelier earrings and be like “guys, you should totally shop at Chico's, look at these earrings, they’re such a good transition day-to-night item!” and then get paid seventy-five cents for it.) Alas, I’m just writing about Home Chef because I’m trying it.
And so far, so good! I’ve made two of the first three meals and they’ve both been quite tasty! And I will say it's sort of trippy to find yourself standing in your kitchen stirring a “cajun remoulade” and thinking like, “I would literally never have made a cajun remoulade in my entire life but some Stanford grad realized how lazy I am and just took my money and sent it to me in the mail and now I’m making air-mailed cajun tilapia? Like what?”
There is one major drawback to the service so far, which I will illustrate for you through a conversation I had with my mother on the day the first box of food arrived. She was over, helping me unpack some books. The following unfolded as I began to take the food out of the Home Chef box and put everything away in the fridge:
Mom: “Um….wow, this is a lot of packaging.”
Me: “No it’s not. It’s normal. Think about my carbon footprint of, like, going to the grocery store, and then you buy a huge jar of horseradish sauce you only use once and then you throw it out three years later? And like, who isn’t always finding moldy broccoli in their fridge?”
Silence. The mother continues to inspect the box.
Mom: “No no... this is not….there’s too much foam-look at this!
She proceeds to pull a foam pad the size of a husky toddler out of the cardboard box.
Mom: “This is so much foam!”
Me: “Well, chicken from the supermarket comes in a foam container!
Mom:“Not this MUCH foam!”
The concerned mother continues to reach into the box and pull plastic things out Mary Poppins-style.
Mom: “I mean, what are you going to do with all these ice packs!”
Environment-hater quickly googles “home chef ice packs” and sees that the goo in them is “safe” and that the packs can be cut open and the goo poured down the sink.
Me: “Um, duh I’ll just cut them open and pour the goo down the sink! And I’ll save one to use for when I burn myself cooking! The goo is good for the environment, Mom! Get with the times!”
The daughter cuts the packs open. Soon the bottom of her sink is covered in a sludgy, creepy goo. It feels like the beginning of a sci-movie where the villains are lazy millennials. The mother turns to her daughter.
Mom: “I just...I personally wouldn’t be comfortable getting this every week-”
Me: “MOM PLEASE STOP YOU’RE RUINING MY HOME CHEF HIGH!”
Mom: “Sorry, sorry.”
Then we turned on the tv and watched Sweet Home Alabama, which I haven’t seen in forever, and can I just say, how completely RIDICULOUS is that movie? Poor Reese having such a hard time choosing between two incredibly handsome, rich, nice men, just one is dark-haired and the other is blonde. Decisions, decisions! I did note, however, that this off-the-shoulder top trend that just won’t quit may have begun with this movie?
It's a mystery. Anyhow, I’m making pork medallions tonight. Maybe I’ll post a picture.
Now that fall is here, and I am spending a lot of time staring out the window wistfully and collecting decorative gourds, I am also remembering how much I enjoyed Ryan Adams' 1989 cover album that came out last year. That's right, an entire album of emo Taylor Swift covers. It's so amazing. It was essentially made for brushing your hair slowly while wearing a gigantic sweater and thinking about the concept of frost. And if you haven't heard it yet YOU'RE WELCOME.
I like basically every cover on the album, but I'm gonna go with "Shake It Off" and "All You Had To Do Was Stay" as the two to share here. (Blank Space is also SUPER emo and great.)
Sort of imagining me and Hillary driving around upstate NY in a vintage red convertible right now, sharing a small bag of caramel popcorn and blasting this album....is that weird?
Hi! I'm Caroline.