Category Archives: Food

Oh, of course the heart-shaped potato woman is from Methdependence. Key quote: “We were afraid he might just toss it,” she said. “I’m a little sad. It’s like when one of your children grows up and sprouts wings.” Yeah, that’s exactly what it’s like.


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@Worthlessness: Star Reporter Uses Twitter To Obsess Over Autumn, Mexican Food

whatcronkletonistweetingaboutAs I am frequently reminded, I am alone among this site’s contributors in failing to grasp the value of Twitter, that vogue-ish haven of solipsism social networking tool that all The Kids seem to be talking about. Call me crazy, but I’m a bit skeptical on this whole “not worried about profits” thing; haven’t we been down this road? It also seems that for every user sharing news and links, there are ten users sharing their thoughts on the weather and what they plan to eat for lunch. Case in point? The Star‘s Robert Cronkleton — owner of the most awesomely dinosaurian name in all of local media — and his Twitter feed, which satisfies us all with scintillating updates (again, and again, and again…) on his most pressing personal issues. The latest? Mexican food, and his lack of ingredients therein. Oh, and how much he loves fall. MORE


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Heartless Star Reader Boldly Predicts Thing That Happened Six Years Ago

probablyshouldhaveknownaboutthishannahratliffEmpathy rarely finds a home in the Star‘s Unfettered Letters blog, where reason and understanding go to die. Such is the case again today with a letter from Lexington MO’s Hannah Ratliff, who responds to a story about a woman’s lawsuit against tobacco companies with a harsh, overly Randian letter. But in the interest of levity, Ratliff decides to work in a little comedic line about what other crazy things people might sue you for:

I do not want to speak negatively about the deceased, but this whole scenario to me is frightening and disappointing. I have personally smoked cigarettes, but I also knew before lighting my first one what the consequences could be. If I didn’t have common sense or even education of what tobacco can do to my body, there are warning labels on the package.

What’s next? Are we going to have an overweight person sue McDonald’s because it’s McDonald’s fault they are overweight?

Hey-o! Watch out, local comedians: Hannah Ratliff is well on her way to stealing your gigs. The problem, however, is this: as we assumed everyone knew, such a thing has already happened.

NEW YORK (CNN) – A lawsuit alleging food from McDonald’s restaurants is responsible for making people obese got thrown out by a federal judge Wednesday.

The landmark legal action was the first of its kind against a fast-food chain to make its way into a U.S. courtroom.

McDonald’s spokesman Walt Riker said that common sense had prevailed in the suit. “We said from the beginning that this was a frivolous lawsuit. Today’s ruling confirms that fact.”

We appreciate the effort at humor, Miss Ratliff, but five seconds of Googling sometimes makes a huge difference in research. Might want to check it out before your next letter.

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Jenee Osterheldt Kicks Off Week With Recycled Julie/Julia Themes

hahanottherealjuliachildThe Star‘s “FYI/Living” columnists, as I see it, are charged with the semi-important task of sparking citywide conversations about, well, FYI/Living. What they are not to do, as I further understand it, is spend a few hundred words boring the reader with things he can read in any other venue. Case in point: the Monday column of hip youngster and amateur hip-hop expert Jenee Osterheldt, who opts to write about the newly vogue Julia Child. Why newly vogue? The book, the movie, etc. Oh, and the subject of just about every nationwide FYI/Living-ish columnist. As luck would have it, it’s also the subject of a sprawling Michael Pollan piece in yesterday’s NYT mag. Osterheldt seems to have just picked out choice themes for her own recycling:

Pollan: It was a kind of courage — not only to cook but to cook the world’s most glamorous and intimidating cuisine — that Julia Child gave my mother and so many other women like her, and to watch her empower viewers in episode after episode is to appreciate just how much about cooking on television — not to mention cooking itself — has changed in the years since “The French Chef” was on the air.

There are still cooking programs that will teach you how to cook. Public television offers the eminently useful “America’s Test Kitchen.” The Food Network carries a whole slate of so-called dump-and-stir shows during the day, and the network’s research suggests that at least some viewers are following along. But many of these programs — I’m thinking of Rachael Ray, Paula Deen, Sandra Lee — tend to be aimed at stay-at-home moms who are in a hurry and eager to please.

Osterheldt: Yet culinary stars such as Rachael Ray, Alton Brown, Giada De Laurentiis and Sunny Anderson have been on my radar lately. And they aren’t pastry chefs. They make meals. And ironically, I’m attempting their recipes…

She loved her craft and made it easier for home cooks everywhere. If Julia could discover the joys of cooking later in life, anyone can. With wit and imagination, she made millions feel they could make a great meal, too.

So finally I get the foodie fuss over the movie about her, “Julie & Julia,” out this weekend.

Pollan: And then, looking right through the camera as if taking us into her confidence, she utters the line that did so much to lift the fear of failure from my mother and her contemporaries: “If you’re alone in the kitchen, WHOOOO” — the pronoun is sung — “is going to see?” For a generation of women eager to transcend their mothers’ recipe box (and perhaps, too, their mothers’ social standing), Julia’s little kitchen catastrophe was a liberation and a lesson: “The only way you learn to flip things is just to flip them!”

Osterheldt: For me, this is a whole new world. And as I explore, I’m not afraid.

As Julia Child would say, “Remember, if you are alone in the kitchen, who is going to see you?”

Let us be clear: this is not plagiarism. So what is it? It’s uninteresting writing, which in the world of media can be just as devastating. The Pollan piece is but one of the dozens of such pieces currently circling the incestuous environs of these kinds of columns. (Do a Google News search for “Julia Child” and see for yourself.) What Osterheldt has done is to remove all the interesting stuff from Pollan’s themes — that cooking as entertainment is exploding, while cooking as American activity is declining — and churn out a dull, trite column. Hardly the stuff that saves papers.

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Ice Cream + Drugs = Pineapple Express-Worthy Hilarity

toobadhecouldntalsosellicecreamAh, leave it to Leavenworth to bring us the GREATEST STORY OF ALL TIME. Seriously. Are there even words to describe just how amazingly awesome this little narrative is?

Rather than stand at a barren street corner, a teenager and a young man chose to sell their drugs from an ice cream truck, Leavenworth police said today.

Chief Patrick Kitchens said a tip led to the arrest of the two — a 20-year-old from Kansas City and a 17-year-old from Lawrence —on possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.

A parent tried to buy some ice cream from the truck Thursday evening.

“And in addition to buying his ice cream, the suspect offered to sell him a bong, which took him aback,” Kitchens said.

Okay, okay. Now wait a second: isn’t the key to being an effectively clandestine drug dealer to let the customer ask you for the product? If you’re offering a cone-seeking parent some paraphernalia — and why a bong instead of the cannabis? — aren’t you basically asking for trouble? On the other hand, though, these gents did an admirable job of eliminating the middle man between weed and the inevitable snacking that follows the demon plant. Word is their first choice was a Doritos truck.

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The Fasting and The Frankfurterious

hotdogIn these challenging times (recession!), each of us is attempting to simplfy our lifestyle through sacrifice, thrift and conservation. For the love of god, titans of industry are falling! Scores of workers find themselves jobless and panicked over job prospects! Why, things are so bad that a certain lawmaker (and Worst Person in the World) aims to deny children food out of “fiscal responsibility.”

Ah, but forget all about that nonsense, because our local paper of record is comin’ atcha with a contest that’s guar-ON-teed to make you forget about poverty and starvation!  By what means can such sorcery be achieved? Silly, hungry, poor inquisitor — by putting clothes on mystery meat products, that’s how!

Enter our Tour de Franks contest

Last year hundreds of you showcased your creativity in FYI’s “Dress a Dog” contest (edible, NOT pet) . For your new passport to summer fun, we’re asking you to pack your suitcasing and travel a-brat.

That’s right, we want you to dress the wieners in tourist duds and send them on vacation (even if you’re stuck at home). Deck them out however you choose — mini clothes, pipe cleaners, pasta, props — just have fun and be creative! Look around the house and in the kids’ toy box for inspiration.

First off, way to go on the whole “journalism” thing, Star. Thank god you fired those pesky local reporters to make room for features such as this. City Hall coverage? No, thank you! More photos of food with doll clothes and googly eyes, please. Great way to get the public to do the work on filling the FYI section for you, as well.

Secondly, “edible, NOT pet”? Excuse me, but I believe those two are not mutually exclusive. The paper would like to further emphasize that they want meat, not mutt:

Just to be perfectly clear: Do not send us pictures of your four-legged dog dressed up — even if he’s a wiener dog.

Yeah, seriously, people. Because that would be dumb.

But really — while families across this city, state, nation, and so forth are having real conversations about how to afford meals, how is it considered a good idea to hold a contest that involves such an appalling waste of food? It’s the same “only in America” phenomenon that has created monstrosities like  the “world’s largest pancake” that sits in a field and rots away or food sculptures that never get eaten. Hey, we love a creative competition as much as the next person, but why involve food in this way?

That being said, here’s our entry. It’s “Grizzly Man” documentarian “Wiener Herzog.”

weiner_herzog copy

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