“Sophie’s Chopped Salad,” no (war) horse included

All the suggestions (often bizarre suggestions) for Oscar-themed party food and dinners made me wonder why, if Hollywood is having such troubles, studios aren’t making more movies set in kitchens or restaurants or around tables. Look what that did for “The Help,” and apparently it featured a shit pie. Other nominees missed the whole food boat (witness the struggling for good “Hugo” or “Midnight” homages). Americans are obsessed with food on any and all screens, and the huge overseas audiences keeping the film industry afloat would eat it up, too. Imagine the tie-ins: “The Artist II” Wheat Thins, “now with no audible crunch.”

Chocolate fountains?

I tuned in on the Twitter just enough to see potpie was served at some Oscar party where the “stars” gathered. Only one question: Why the fuck? Potpie is one of the most ill-conceived things ever pulled out of an oven: Not only is it underseasoned soup with a crust, the soup is always hot enough to melt the spoon, so you spend half the encounter knowing the thin top is getting soggy while the bottom is bubbling into boring. But I guess slopping it out makes sense — it’s one of those dishes both the super-wealthy and death-row convicts seem to value with their undeveloped palates. Maybe if foie gras were relabeled liverbest they’d go for it.

15 cents a day for school lunch: a bridge to nowhere too far

And I can’t keep up with all the wingnuttiness these days, but I do find the growing push for drug testing of food stamp recipients rather bat-guano insane. Not only does it add to costs and bureaucracy (AKA Big Gubmint) and cause needless humiliation. But let’s say you catch one of the little users. You’ll save a couple of bucks a day in benefits. Then you throw her/him in jail and have to provide free meals for years.

Don’t ask or holy crap they’ll tell

Deluded me, I thought the movement in Utah to get some imbibers on the liquor control board made a ginload of sense. But apparently there’s backlash from contemporary Carry Nations (lost in my Twitter stream, or I’d link). Come on — of course you want someone who does what normal people do to have a vote. Otherwise you get teetotalers advising we all hold a grape between our knees at happy hour.

But Coffee Day is also big in the land of tea

Just as Twinkies can never go stale, neither can my ranting about how clueless the coverage of the Hostess Brands scumbaggery is. When news broke about one of the all-time icons of processed crap, food writers everywhere scrambled to whip up puns as if supermarket shelves were about to be wiped clean. Then as now, though, the real story was not about the death of unkillable junk. It’s about the same Pony Express horse shit involved in willfully bleeding the USPS dry. The Bread Wonders just want to magically erase benefits for the human beings they happened, so unfortunately, to acquire along with the assets of a limping company. Ho Hos, indeed.

“A cartoon and easy to caricature”

I’m sure I’ve mentioned I venture into the editorial pages of the WSJournal every morning just to see what color/consistency of feces the monkeys are flinging and eating that day. So I’m pretty familiar with the lies, lies and Barbaro droppings printed there from assorted “think tanks” and other well-compensated ventriloquists for lunacy. And what I want to know is how the wires got crossed and the hometown paper ran a classic surging Murdoch screed. I guess everyone’s so busy blogging insanely (or inanely) these days they can’t stop and fact-check. (Cows in the Willie Nelson ad? Really?) Or even ask obvious questions: Doesn’t Chipotle’s wild success prove there’s a market for bacon (or other pig richness) that costs more? I’m so old I actually lived in Iowa when all farmers raised hogs the right way, but of course that was before Earl Butz. Mostly, though, my consort was smarter than I: He just looked at the bio and bailed. And he’s right: A former hog farmer who now grows corn and soybeans knows most about harvesting tax dollars.

“Genuine natural pure”

I’m also trying to tune out the Clown Car because I know it’s only going in reverse, but sometimes teh stupid just has to be noted. And this week that would be the photo of the wearer of the magic underpants (and of the ill-fitting, oddly weathered Everyman Brand jeans) making yet another peanut butter and honey sandwich for the benefit of the press corpse. I’m sorry. If a guy bottle-fed on liquefied gold ingots really prefers to eat like a kid, he doesn’t deserve a White House chef. As much as the KKKrazies deny evolution, palates should improve with exposure to serious food.

Duck rillettes in the health food store

Some recycling here: In one day I saw “enterance” and “osco bucco” and also Rocco’s food truck, and that last is the fork stuck in that trend: It’s done. Also in my travels around this little island I came across a mention of a “pea soup floater” and would not want to find that even in the litter box. I also see we can just skip Lent — the Easter candy has arrived. I was mostly amused while others were outraged that a nobody made the front page for losing her teevee gig over plagiarized recipes. It’s full circle for Ms. Perfect, from perp to victim. And finally: “Taste bud map of Italy” sounds like a boot in your mouth.

“Pimples happen”

More and more I feel as if I get up on Sunday to find myself back in the late Eighties/early Nineties. A certain slinger just ran a recipe calling for skinless chicken breasts, nonfat milk, low-sodium chicken broth and phyllo dough rather than pie crust. And called it “healthier pot pie” at 615 calories a serving. Trust me: No one who wants to eat a potpie is going to invest time in it rather than nuking a Swanson’s. And anyone who might would just say the hell with it on breaking through toasted toilet tissue to get to the glop within.

Waste not

Apparently there was some dust-up in a Harlem restaurant. Why it was covered, and at length, in the hometown paper eluded me. And having worked there twice, I remain mystified at how Yelpers came to be validated as sources fit to print. Savvier observers than I just say Metro has gone to the dog, but I suspect there’s something more insidious at work. And then there was the pandering with the slavering coverage of the archbishop in Rome, the guy who considers spinach a local delicacy (also, too, tiramisu, a creation of Treviso). I hate to ask the obvious, but when did gluttony stop being a sin?

President, BTW, is supermarket butter

And I hope to allah no Afghans were able to access the MFK Wannabe musings of the war correspondent stranded in “Restrepo” land. The death of Anthony Shadid kicked everyone in the gut this week, and I have nothing but awe for the brave who engage in conflict reportage. But this was tone-deafness by the desk, yet again. Are readers really supposed to empathize with someone who has to cook with “mangy” zucchini but has milk for her cocoa? What about the poor people whose country we’re still occupying, who live with indescribable deprivation every single day, with no food porn for comfort, no possibility of escaping to Paris at will? The worst part is that the same photographer who had to illustrate that “suffering” also produced these shots. Seriously: What next, after the plight of a vegetarian sentenced to eat in the “Midwest”? Bobo goes to Applebee’s in search of the salad bar?