The problem with subscriptions

In this case it is Bon Appetit. I am pretty sure this is what happened with Food and Wine, as well, and any number of other magazine subscriptions. 

I get these notices…the second and third came in the same mail. Good thinking. I know they are bullshit because my subscription expires in March of 2018 so I just ignore them. And then when they are real and I’ve long ago stopped looking at them, I suddenly no longer get the magazine. And when that happens it is too late. If you resubscribe they send you the 3 past issues that you already have as a part of the the 12 month subscription. I did this once. And I got the 3 old issues and I called, back when you could still call, and argued but the person said it was policy. I told them to cancel the rest of my subscription then. They extended it 3 months. Whoever thinks these systems up isn’t using a re-subscription service like this. It’s a mess.

And, in the meantime, I no longer get Food and Wine. But I am looking forward to my 48th and 9th notices for my Bon Appetit expiration.

Pork sugo…Bon Appetit

If you like a lot of rigmarole, and I do, this recipe for pork sugo in the most recent Bon Appetit is for you. Roasting, sautéing, braising, straining, shredding, blending….it took an entire day. Not of constant attendance at the stove (and/or oven) but, you know, just being there. The tomatoes roasted with garlic and olive oil until they browned. Then shallots, more garlic, I added a pimento pepper and then red wine, chicken stock and milk. I added half the amount of liquid they called for, and it was still too soupy. It called for braising it with the lid on but lately on ATK they’ve been doing this with the lid off which concentrates the flavor and brown the meat. So I did that. 

The two pounds of pork, which was too fatty, ended up being not really enough. There was a lot of liquid but not much meat. I had some for dinner, then I refrigerated it all, took the hardened fat off the sauce, removed and chopped the meat, and then blended everything else until I had a smooth sauce and made individual lasagnas. They were awesome.

Bon Appetit cover fail

BA cover game weak. 

Sort of a clever idea. The cover is supposed to open like a refrigerator door. Unfortunately it did not. And it wasn’t just that it tore. It was freaking impossible to get off. It wasn’t exactly herculean but it was a pain and in the end it looked like shit. 

What was worse though was the inside. A picture of the inside of a refrigerator filled with lovely vegetables and happy, if idiotic tips, for refrigerator storage. YOU NEVER, EVER PUT TOMATOES INTO A REFRIGERATOR. Especially heirloom tomatoes someone has paid a lot of money for. Where was the editor, art director, photo stylist, printer’s rep??? Doesn’t anyone at the magazine know anything? This whole thing is a mess.

Thankfully there was only one recipe in the magazine I thought worth keeping so I can dispose of this issue with the crappy ripped cover, ASAP.

January, the month of pain

I don’t drink in the month of January. After the binge eating and drinking of the holiday season I need to give it a rest. I had plans every single night but one over the Christmas/New Years holiday (and that night I ordered pizza) and the plans always included massive quantities of food and wine. I also tend to eat the kinds of cookies and desserts that normally I’d pass up. I don’t know what comes over me. I can’t help it.

So now the month begins. No wine. I’d say I was going to diet, and I am, but there is no formal diet I’m following. I found this guide in Bon Appetit. It works for me. I suppose cheese is not a healthy fat.

On another note, I was horrified this morning to discover that the scale at the Y is broken. I need to know my starting weight.

Anthony Bourdain

In the most recent issue (June 2012) of Bon Appetit magazine Anthony Bourdain makes the claim that he is not a snob. He may not be many things but he is a snob. I think I like him, I have certainly read a lot of his stuff (excluding his awful and poorly written novel that got published after he was famous but was written before, I imagine) and listened to him read his most recent book in which he excoriates a lot of people he doesn’t like.

For the record a snob is a person who believes himself or herself an expert or
connoisseur in a given field and is condescending toward or disdainful of those
who hold other opinions or have different tastes regarding this field 
according to He may be a willing participant in the eating of what he thinks of as food beneath his station and he may think that means he is not a snob. But he is one nonetheless.

I have to admit that I am not a fan of Paula Deen necessarily or Andrew Cuomo’s girlfriend, whatever her name is, but I can see that they have value and recognize that people might like what they have to offer. And I certainly wouldn’t trash them the way he seems to like to do. I will also admit that I enjoy a lot of what he has to say and how he says it. But, not a snob? I don’t think so.

My nephew Charlie and I met Paula Deen once at the Fancy Food show in New York. She was lovely and friendly. She gave me a packet of her “house blend spice” or some such thing. It was salt, pepper and garlic powder.