38-48/1000 Foods to Eat Before You Die
Well, it’s been a year since last I updated my 1000 Foods To Eat Before You Die journey. I’m still eating foods, I just haven’t been very good about keeping track of when I’m checking them off, and I’ve been downright negligent about blogging them.
HOWEVER, I have transferred my list from a Google Doc spreadsheet (hard to keep up with on an iPhone) to the Google Keep ap (much simpler, more searchable, and more beautiful) and I’m back in the swing of things. Oh, also I graduated from Juilliard. So I have some time to catch up on projects.
Let’s look at the things I have eaten in the last year that I have managed to take photos of:
I ate a Moonpie. I still hate them. (38).
Every couple of years, I forget that Moonpies taste like sawdust and despair. American-made since 1902! There are so many flavors now! Nearly 1 million are produced every day! They all taste like sawdust and despair.
Ramen is bae (39).
New York has no shortage of Ramen options. In fact, I gave Miles a “ramen map” as a gift. We have a lot of favorite spots; I’m partial to Totto Ramen in Hell’s Kitchen. I always order an extra soft-boiled egg in mine. Mimi for some reason DOES NOT INCLUDED RAMEN IN THE BOOK, which I find to be a ludicrous oversight, so I have subbed it in myself in place of fugu, the occasionally-deadly Japanese blowfish, which I will never be trying.
Tacos in Austin, TX (40).
We went to Austin for a wedding last August. I ate 12 tacos in four days.
Olive Oil (41).
We use a ton of olive oil, ever since I read this book about “real fats” and banned anything except extra virgin oo, butter, and coconut oil for cooking in our home. Good olive oil is a thing of beauty, so delicious it can be eaten with a spoon. As Thomas Jefferson said, “The olive tree is surely the richest gift of heaven.” That’s not a lyric in HAMILTON, but it should be. A few days before we moved to NYC for good last year, we paid a final visit to the Abingdon Olive Oil Company to stock up on the good stuff. If I know one thing about oo it’s this: you get what you pay for.
Classic Oreos are one of the best things on the planet (42).
Oreos were created in America in 1912, and one could reasonably argue we have yet to surpass that achievement. I like eating them with a cold glass of milk, but I am not a dunker. If I do enhance my Oreos in any way, it is just by spreading a thin layer of peanut butter on top. Delightful. I can’t keep them in the house; there is no moderation when Oreos are in play.
Cornish Pasty (43).
Recently, Miles and I found ourselves sucked into the glorious Britannic wormhole that is Myers of Keswick in the West Village, and we walked out with some British foods to check off the list. Firstly, a homemade Cornish Pasty (rhymes with “nasty,” but is anything but). A “first cousin to the Latin-American empanada and the Russian piroshki,” as Mimi tells us, the Cornish Pasty was created as a handheld, meal-in-one for miners in Cornwall to carry with them into the mines. The traditional filling is chopped beef, root vegetables, onions, and herbs. It is divine.
Bangers and Mash (44) and a Fried Egg (45).
While at MofK, we purchased some housemade Bangers as well. These big, plump, pork sausages were named “bangers” during WWI, “when adding water added to stretch the scarce meat of the filling caused the frying sausages to burst–with a bang.” Miles is the king of potatoes, so he made the Mash. We rounded out the breakfast, as we often do around here in the morning, with a Fried Egg. Mimi, ever the purist, says that the traditional Fried Egg is pan-fried in butter, but we used olive oil, as is our way. I am one of those people who likes the white to be completely cooked, with a crisp, golden-brown fringe around the edge, but I understand that not everyone feels as I do about this. They’re wrong, but to each his own.
I live in NYC, so you already know where I ate these (plus it says so on the plate). Veselka, if you haven’t ever been, is worth a plane ticket all on its own. As it says on its website, “Since 1954, Veselka has been serving up traditional Ukrainian food in the heart of the East Village.” Everything on the menu is incredible, but the Pierogis are a true standout in a galaxy of amazing dishes. You can choose from a handful of flavors, get them them boiled or fried (I prefer boiled), and they come with housemade kraut, sour cream, and applesauce for dipping. The mushroom-filled variety are my favorite, but I don’t think there is actually a way to go wrong.
Cannoli (47) and Pâte à Choux (48).
The same day I went to Veselka and pierogied my face off with friends, we also went to Veniero’s for pastries (it was a bad day for calories, but a great day for everyone else). As you can see by the excitement in Hilary’s face, we were not shy about going HAM on the pastry menu, making sure to order two of the Cannoli that Veniero’s is famous for: chocolate and vanilla. Veniero’s is where Mimi advises you to find Cannoli (though, ever the purist, she doesn’t condone the chocolate variety), and indeed, they were the best I’ve ever had.
We also ordered (among other delicacies), an éclair and some cream puffs. I used to be insane about éclairs, but I have calmed down a little in recent years. Cream puffs, frankly, I can take or leave. Both éclairs and cream puffs are made with the same dough: pâte à choux, or “cream puff pastry.” This is also the dough you would find in a profiterole or a croquembouche. Mimi said to eat it, and I obliged.
All of this sugar was consumed with gusto, and we were well pleased. And pretty wired.