Is this the end, foodies?
The end of the semester?
Are we really saying goodbye?
Truthfully, I don’t know. I’ve actually had a really good time keeping up with this class blog. Could I be good at this? Eh. Maybe. Or maybe I’ll just let this steep in it’s age like the rest of my blog projects of yore.
Honestly though, I’ve had a blast throughout this semester. It’s definitely been one for the books, and I couldn’t have been prouder of what this blog turned into. I’ll never forget when my URL name first popped into my head and I realized how I was going to do my blog project for the semester…I felt like such a genius.
This year has been full of a lot of realizations and inspirations and food. And a lot of learning how to cook food, because now that I’m living in my own spaces with kitchen machines and such, I need to kind of learn how to do the food.
I’d like to thank my dad, for inspiring me to constantly do good in this world and make everyone laugh a time or two.
I’d also like to thank my mom, because without her, I’d really REALLY be terrible at cooking. But due to her teaching, I’m actually not that bad of a cook in the kitchen….or so say my roommates and friends.
So, until next time, foodies. And I don’t know when that will be….but I’m sure you’ll see me around this place somewhere sometime soon.
Thanks for tuning in. It’s been a complete blast. I hope y’all had as much fun as I did. Hopefully I’ll have enough time in my stupid busy schedule to come back to this every so often and give everyone a little laugh and a little bit of love too.
Food love, that is.
Stay hungry, my friends.
It’s not that great.
It’s not very cohesive.
It’s not edited very well.
Its not about food.
Yes, I am hungry.
But I wanted to show y’all just what was going on. The kind of motion, the actual things that were happening in Boston. Footage is both from after the marathon as well as the day after. Credit goes to my dad for his contributions through video as well, some of these are his, not mine.
I don’t have much to say about the videos, I just thought they’d be interesting to watch for those who were not there. It’s chaotic and messy edited. Kind of how life felt for those two days.
I’m going to go make some Ramen.
Get ready, Foodies.
It’s finals time.
Greetings from Boston, MA. Yes, for those of you who are wondering, my family and I are here, my father did run the marathon, and we are all safe.
This trip has been one for the books. A marathon we have been looking forward to for very long, something my father has earned two times in a row, something that I dream to run later on in my life.
Something that will forever be in our minds as the day the bombs went off at the finish.
It’s so strange.
Here is my timeline chronicling our trip.
This post may not be as funny or fun or bright as my usual posts.
But I hope that expresses to you the gravity of the situation.
Saturday, April 13, 2013
We woke up at 3:30AM for our 7:30AM flight from the Dallas/Ft. Worth Airport. We’re a traveling family. We drive everywhere. Flying is a treat, so this was actually really exciting.We had also never flown JetBlue (official airline of The Boston Marathon) except for my dad, so it was definitely a new experience. Really a good time.
We were exhausted and nonsense tired and all of the fun stuff, but that’s what family trips are for, right? We were excited though. DFW airport was FULL of marathoners, many with past Boston Marathon jackets on. The buzz was intense and thrilling. I could only imagine what my dad was feeling.
Needless to say, the flight was WAY too early but the sunrise from the tarmac was beautiful. Leaving Dallas was a good time, and we had a great flight (side note: the other two girls are my younger sisters, obviously the man in the Boston jacket is my father, my mom skillfully “missed” every single photo…I’ll catch her in one another day.)
Boston was beautiful from the very beginning. The cold harbor air smelled, surely, but it was an overwhelming overflow of large buildings artfully crafted from this amazing, almost old-world architecture. The streets were full of hustle and bustle. The city was alive. Full of energy and activity. Much different from any other city I had ever been in. It was a true experience from the moment we stepped out of the taxi and on to the street.
The expo was fantastic. Full of competitors and family and big time runners from all over. Ultra marathoner Dean Karnazes, the editor and chief of RunnersWorld David Willey, male competitor Ryan Hall and my favorite women’s competitors Kara Goucher and Shalane Flanagan were all there for meet and greets. Despite the fact that I did not have the opportunity to meet any of them, I got pictures/video of a few of them.
The day was full of excitement for the days ahead. We had no idea what to expect.
Sunday, April 14, 2013
Another day, another block to walk. We traveled far and wide on this day, just exploring the shops. The marathon festivities just kept on going, and it was an exciting, fun time! I ended up winning $20 from the local New Balance store, so what did I purchase?
I’m so adventurous.
We ended up going to Maggianos Little Italy down the way. It was not Bostonian, but it was great. Another wonderful family lunch/dinner. A last minute carb load for my dad before his big journey the next day. We Pernices know how to eat anyway. Multiple cups of coffee and pastries later, and we were down for the count very, very early.
Pre-race jitters set in for all of us. Everyone was very excited and ready for race day.
Monday, April 15, 2013
I woke up around 5:00AM when my dad was getting up and ready to catch his bus to the Athlete’s Village. This was a marathon like none that our family had ever been to before. We wouldn’t be able to see my dad start the race, they were to be bussed 26.2 miles away to a small town where the race began. From there they would race down to the finish in downtown Boston on Boylston Street, and from there a grand celebration would ensue.
After falling back asleep, I woke up and had breakfast and coffee with my mom and sisters. We prepared and headed down three blocks to Boylston. It was a gorgeous marathon day. Beautiful weather for running. We succeeded in getting a very good seat, right in front of the Starbucks, two cross streets down from the finish. Right up next to the gate, by a nice family waiting for their father running his first Boston as well. It was a great day already.
I saw my favorite elite women finish, AND I got video of both. We made the joke that I was breathing the same air as my idols. It was true, but yes, very funny. I can only hope to meet the two of them one day.
Three hours and forty minutes later, my dad sprinted up to us, hollered into the camera with a huge smile and continued to finish his very first Boston Marathon. We were all so proud. He took a very leisurely pace so he could enjoy everything the marathon had to offer along the way, from bonging beers with local Boston College frat boys, to meeting many other runners along the way. We slowly made our way from where we were sitting to our hotel so that we could meet my dad and help him up to the room.
Little did we know what had happened literally moments after we left where we had been sitting.
The bombs went off ten seconds apart, a few hundred meters apart as well. We didn’t even hear the explosions, we actually realized what was happening when a co-worker of my mom’s texted her to ask if she was alright. The news was plastered with information and alerts. Gruesome images and audio from the race. It was ridiculous. An act of terror, indeed.
But Team Pernice had plans, reservations actually, at a restaurant we had been looking forward to eating at since well before our trip. The Barking Crab, and it was way too good of a restaurant. Since public transportation was shut down due to heightened security, our family hoofed it a mile and a half to eat really good seafood and continue life in the best and only way we know how: to chow down.
Yes, I know what you’re thinking. Was the lobster and crab and fried smorgasbord of sea fare marvelous? Why yes, foodies, it was. And yes, I know what else you are thinking, that was my first raw oyster. And a very attractive face to go along with it, huh? But it tasted so good…good enough that I had a second one. I was definitely happy with it.
As we walked the distance back to our hotel, we took a different route and explored the city a little bit. However, we came to find that the streets were eerily silent. Much more silent than they were when we had walked to dinner. Locals were here and there, police and SWAT officers had stationed themselves at the entrances of large hotels and parking garages. Emergency vehicles passed every so often. News crews were driving around taking random B-roll the quiet scene. We just sort of looked around. There wasn’t really much else to say.
Our hotel was on a lockdown of sorts, there was only one door available for those staying at Lowes (our hotel) to access the inside. The staff was extremely short handed at this point…many employees were obviously Bostonians who would rather spend their time at home. And who would blame them? They’re currently comparing this to 9/11…what would you do? You know?
I spent hours contacting friends and family, letting them know we were okay, that I was okay. What I found to be so interesting was that people started thanking me for calling and allowing them to hear my voice. It was strange. I guess I never realized how much more tangible the sound of a person’s voice was as opposed to reading a long and drawn out text message. I didn’t mind.
My night ended in nightmares and almost zero sleep. Emergency vehicles kept passing by here and there. The entire room was pitch black. I felt alone, even though I was completely surrounded by my family.
But at least for the day it was over.
Tuesday, April 16, 2013
We left Boston in a blaze of baggage and personal B-roll recorded by yours truly. Airport security was tight, with local SWAT and FBI agents toting around M16s and TSA checking for traces of explosive powders on hands. By this point, I was just ready to get back to Dallas.
On the flight home, I reviewed my footage and pictures, combined with the footage and pictures my dad had taken.
I wasn’t quite okay with what I saw.
These are two pictures I took myself with my phone. I wish I had brought a better camera, but that might have been to bulky considering the amount of walking and traveling I was doing.
The picture on the left was one that I had taken around 9:00AM. Everybody who has been following the news would know that this is the finish line…this is the location where the bomb went off. Taking this picture where the scene is so calm and just…normal feeling, and now looking at pictures where it is devastated and upsetting is such a strange eye opener. Had I not taken this photo, we would have been caught up and possibly closer to the explosion times, because one of my younger sisters wanted to take a picture of it after my dad had finished the race. It’s just so strange when you think about it.
The image on the right was one I had taken when we were walking back from dinner. The streets were almost silent. You could just hear the murmuring of families, people on cell phones and the activity of first responders on the other side of barricades. This was as close as I wanted to get. I could have been a little more of a journalist and taken better pictures…but I started not wanting to be a part of this anymore. I just wanted to go home.
In the grand scheme of things, I am so thankful for being a part of Boston…as strange as that may sound. When I look back on my short, young life, I’ve had so many interesting experiences. I never thought I’d directly experience something like this though. History. Bad history. But it was an experience.
I have constantly hoped and prayed for the wellbeing of Boston and our running community. I can’t even begin to express my feelings I will forever have about how this event touched and changed my life and the way I look at living.
With everything that has happened within the past week, I am grateful for what I have.
See you next year, Boston. Back to the marathon…back to the finish line.
Until next time, foodies.
This still isn’t perfected. I’m slightly disappointed in myself. I think I didn’t understand the concept of butter or high heat or something. I’m not quite sure.
Maybe I’m not cut out to oven-fry something.
Maybe I’m not cut out for higher education.
Maybe I’m not cut out for life.
Well that escalated quickly.
Anyway, let’s not freak out. It’s chicken time.
It’s raw chicken time. Don’t be afraid.
Chicken bath. Do it. Wash it.
While you’re washing this, your oven machine should be preheating. It’s going to take awhile, so don’t get too excited.
Go find a youtube video to watch. Dance around. I don’t know. Be productive for once, you lazy college student (obviously this is me talking to myself.)
After washing the chicken, you should prepare two pie tins/cake dishes/some sort of round receptacle to hold your dry rub and your wet things separate for coating.
This photography is hurting my head. My phone camera skills are just astonishing to me. I apologize to the general public, including those who are photography enthusiasts/photographers. I love photography, and I just don’t have a really good camera.
I suck. Yes, you can say it too.
Anyway, I’m going to discuss my dry rub because the wet is self explanatory.
That dry pan contains flour, paprika, salt and pepper, and…
crushed up Frosted Flakes?
I wanted more of a crunch element to my chicken. Don’t knock it before you try it. Corn Flakes is a very common cereal used for this, so you shouldn’t be afraid of a little frost on your flakes, right?
You know, side note, just looking at the names of Frosted Flakes and Corn Flakes, were they made at the same time? Or maybe one after the other? I don’t know, too much introspection. Or whatever that word is.
Mass Communications major, y’all.
Anyway, coat the chicken, liberally. Get it all up in every little place.
Get jiggy with it.
Or don’t. Oh God. I don’t know. That was too far again.
Anyway, pop those suckers in the hot box for awhile. Probably an hour or something.
Flip them to prevent burning.
Or possibly make the cooking pan non stick in some way. Maybe apply some Pam. Or butter. Or a wax sheet.
And then flip them.
I have no “after” picture for these because they looked like a total failure. I need a better system for these. So until I fix the recipe, there will be no picture or recipe update until then.
Power on, foodies.
FOODIES LEMME HEAR YA’ HOLLA!
It’s a great day to be a Bobcat, people!
When it gets warmer, I get even more full of school spirit and pride. I absolutely love Texas State and San Marcos and everything the area has to offer. It’s so different from where I grew up, Plano/DFW, and I explore it as much as possible.
So as y’all know, I’m a huge advocate for small businesses and local food. Lately, my friends and I have been taking treks out into the wild world of the 78666 and we’ve found that San Marcos has A TON of fantastic food to offer.
I’ll give y’all a little lesson on just a tidbit of what this city has to offer.
Get out a pencil and paper. Y’all gon’ learn today.
1) Zen’s Pizza
THIS PLACE IS WONDERFUL. Great prices along with fantastic pies. All organic and locally grown ingredients, fresh made dough, and a real relaxed atmosphere. The restaurant isn’t all crazy and busy and loud. It’s actually a great joint to hang out, gather with some friends, and chow down on some great and creative pizza.
My friend Abby and I decided to take advantage of my three-hour break on Monday afternoons between class and demolish a pizza.
Tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese and arugala, good sauce, and thick crust…ugh. To die for. Needless to say, we finished that sucker off easy.
But then again, I’m a bottomless pit for food.
Shameless, my friends, I am shameless.
PS: these guys deliver, and they DELIVER BEER TOO.
2) The Gardener’s Feast – Texas State University Quad Farmers Market
Six dollars for two, yes I’ll say it isn’t exactly the kind of splurge somebody would want to make on something as “silly” as a couple tamales in The Quad at Texas State University. But they’re so worth it. To die for.
Quality organic tamales, made for both the carnivore and herbivore in all of us. Or even the sweet tooth-ivore. These guys have it all. The masa is so clean tasting, and is so soft. Never grainy or unpleasant. Definitely worth saving up the quarters, dollars, or even the money in your bank account because these guys use Square to charge your debit or credit cards on the spot! Definitely not something you want to miss out on.
3) Pho Thaison
Okay, so this place is in Kyle, but that isn’t very far from where we are. This is a GREAT place to get pho or any other vietnamese food in the area when you can’t make the pilgrimage to Austin (or in my case, back home to Plano to grab a bowl from my favorite pho restaurant.) I will admit, this is a pricey place, but they don’t disappoint. I spent about $25 on two people, but it was definitely worth the price tag.
Also, if you’ve never tried pho, you’re missing out. A regular bowl of beef eye round is a great place to start. I always eat a bowl of seafood pho, and make sure it’s as spicy as can be. Sriracha for the win. If you’re not sweating when you’re eating it, you’re doing it wrong.
4) The Caboose – Food Trailer/The Hitch – Mobile Eatery
For a quick fix on a Friday during Lent, this Catholic was extremely pleased with what she got. A crawfish po boy sandwich with homemade fries, and it was SO good. The guys inside were a little weary, making sure that I had eaten a crawfish po boy before, but I was a little confused as to why they were asking. But, like always, I was confident and told them to bring it on.
And they sure did.
They stuff the huge sandwich with ample amounts of fried crawfish chunks and a very spicy homemade slaw that was to die for. Fantastic job. One of the guys came out to see what I thought of it, and I raved to him on the spot. Needless to say, I’ll be back for something else, because the rest of their fish dishes looked amazing.
I wish I had a picture to do the meal justice. Maybe another day.
Travel far and wide, foodies.
You never know what you might find.
OH HELLO ALL.
Let’s talk legs.
Inappropriate? Eh. Uncomfortable? Never. Tasty? Oh yes.
Chicken legs, people, drumsticks and thighs.
GET IT RIGHT.
Mm. Rawness. Excellent.
Wait. Let’s back up.
First off, I’m sure you have a question for me.
What are we even making?!
Well today, my lovelies, we’re making a fantastic tidbit I found on tumblr.
Honey Soy Chicken. SO GOOD.
So let’s pick up, maybe back up a little from that first picture.
You should probably give those legs a little bath before putting them on a clean plate. While they are drying, or hanging out, or whatever they want to do, you should prepare the fantastic swimming pool that they will be slathered in later.
Yes, I used the verb “slathered.” I find it to be so…like, intrusive, but so wonderful. Like, it sounds almost a little too…I don’t know, you get the picture. It makes me hungry, so, yes.
The main ingredients in this you can most likely find in your kitchen just hanging out. Honey, soy sauce, garlic…yes. So easy to mix up.
Mix that, and while you’re doing that, make sure you’ve been preheating your oven too.
Prepare the pool. And get ready to dive in.
The chicken, that is.
These puppies are going to take awhile to cook, around an hour or so. Make sure to constantly love them by tending to them around the halfway point and flipping each drumstick so that every part gets saturated.
While they’re cooking, develop some new hobbies.
I know I did.
I don’t know, I saw this while I was waiting for my food to cook.
My hair apparently wanted to imitate the claw from Toy Story. And it stayed that way ALL NIGHT.
And by the time you’ve managed to do absolutely nothing probably
These are so, so good y’all. And so simple to make. A great paring with your favorite instant mashed potatoes. I’d say hand mashed potatoes, but let’s face it, we’re in college, and I’d much rather be playing sand volleyball with my roommates in the evening than peeling potatoes and doing way more work than I ever wanted to.
But if that’s how you roll, I respect that.
Hey food-nuts. HAPPY APRIL FOOLS DAY!
It’s been awhile.
I’m sick again. Acute tonsillitis. What’s new?
Anyway, we’ve got 20 days of the spring semester left, which means SUMMER IS RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER. I’m currently working on my Spotify playlists for the first river floats/road trips of the season.
BUT THAT ISN’T WHAT WE’RE HERE FOR, NOW IS IT?
We’re back to cooking, people, and I got adventurous and decided to take on the challenge of living up to my mom’s amazing cooking. So the young Italian inside of me starting screaming something about making spaghetti sauce and something with noodles and ricotta mix and nonsense. A little reminiscent of when I was a kid and my mom would make lasagna, yes?
So I decided to make stuffed shells. Yes? Yes. Oh yes.
Sounds daunting, possibly. But it’s actually one of the easiest things I’ve had to learn from my mom over the phone.
So lettuce begin (see what I did there…nobody missed me and my horrible humor, I’m so so sorry…)
If you’re making a homemade sauce (and you should be, because it’s not that hard) then I’d start with that first. Make sure to add liberal amounts of red wine/dark chocolate to cut the tartness in the sauce. Also, make sure you get the basil versions of the canned tomatoes and paste, if available. If not, you can always add fresh basil. Or not. I really don’t care what you do.
Okay, maybe I do. A little.
I just want you to eat well.
Stop getting so upset.
It looks a little frightening, doesn’t it?
Stop it. Make friends. Make nice. STOP IT, IT’S JUST CHEESE.
The ricotta mix up there is magical. Just wonderful nonsense. My sisters and I used to steal it and eat little spoonfuls here and there when my mom would make it for a dinner every so often. It’s simple, and when made the right way, it makes the best spread for lasagna/shells/whatever else you’d enjoy spreading a thick cheese spread on.
Do it to it, people.
On to other things.
In the words of Grace Helbig, creator of My Damn Channel, “boil the macaroni until it turns into food.”
**click the link, it’s wonderful, you’ll laugh for days**
But we’re not using macaroni, we’re using manicotti shells. So boil the manicotti until it turns into food. Ya’ hear? BUT don’t boil it all the way. We like it al dente, kiddies. Since it’ll be going into the oven to bake for a little bit, the noodles will do the rest of their dance in the hot box machine.
When the sauce is heated, noodles are prepped and the cheese filling is done being made, stuff the shells as best as you can. I’m still figuring out the perfect way to do this. But until we all figure out our own nonsense, slather it around wherever in that little tube of perfection. If you’re not a very…graceful…person, maybe tackle lasagna before you do shells. Confidence, fools, it’s all about confidence.
To the oven thing.
*11 or so minutes later*
Look at how beautiful it is!
Short time in the oven, just enough so that the cheese on the top melts. We don’t want burnt, crusty shells. That would be unfortunate. But even then, it’s not worth throwing away. Food is food. But my advice to you is to just not screw it up the first time.
Gosh, I’m so encouraging.
A very cheap and quick dinner for a ton of people, or maybe something that will become leftovers in the long run. This stuff keeps for awhile, and if you’re like me, the leftovers can be eaten any time of the day, cold or hot.
Don’t disappoint me, folks. Do justice to my mom’s recipe and my little food blog.
I love all of you.
That was drastic.
Chow down foodies.
So, here’s something. I decided (*cough cough* was assigned to *cough cough*) to create an app based off of this blog of mine. Something that would help my fellow foodies find places to indulge in some fantastic food in their area of choice.
Coming from close to the mecca of food trucks (Austin, Texas), I thought creating an app that tracked those fantastic food trucks, in real time, so that finding them when you’re craving some of your favorite homemade truck gumbo, those really great barbacoa tacos you heard about in some other weird Mass Communications class, or any sort of other truck food.
And so, I created Wandercrust: A Mobile Food Truck Tracker.
Thank you, I really appreciate it (I’m sure this has been done in some way, shape or form…but I think mine would be way cooler).
Some specifics about the app itself:
- The app is currently for the Android OS ONLY, an Apple app will be created once the Android app is bug-free, is solidly developed, and has a good local following
- Because the app is on Android, is is integrated with the Google Maps/Navigate app that is pre-downloaded on the Android device
- The app also uses Google Search to gather information about each search
- The app runs on real-time, so the app syncs either by a set sync time or by the user’s command
Screen 1: Main Screen
This was created to pretty much map out the ENTIRE app so that the user would not have any question as to where they needed to go or start when they opened it for the very first time. Before the user even begins to use the app, they will be asked to either enter information based on their permanent location, or to enable GPS usage whenever the app is opened. Once the area is established, the “fast map” will show a zoomed-out version of the main city.
Over time, the user can develop a list of “favorites” that will show up on the fast map. These favorite food trucks will be denoted by a red push-pin and will change in location as the trucks travel from place to place.
Screen 2: New Search Screen
The new search screen will most likely be the first place the user goes to conduct their first food truck search. The screen will display the same fast map that the main screen shows, however it will update as the user conducts searches.
The search will ask for the business’ name (optional), followed by a search by City/State or zipcode, the desired distance from the specified location, and the genre/type of cuisine the user would like to find. Once found, the search will drop blue push-pins on the map to denote where the search results are.
Blue push-pins differ from red push-pins because they do not appear on the fast map. They will only display on the “new search” screen, as well as on the “recent places” screen (if the truck was reported as “visited”/if the truck was navigated to by the user). Both blue and red push-pins can be clicked on to view extensive information about the food truck that is found through Google Search.
So there you have it, foodies! A musing of mine about some crazy Android app that could be some day.
That would be kind of cool, huh? It sure would make my food truck trips to Austin a whole lot easier.
Happy Midterming, Foodies.
If you judge me for this post, you’re doing it wrong.
I’m a poor college student. Spam is legitimate. Get over your fear. Canned meat looks really REALLY uninviting (trust me, I’d rather be eating a prime cut of beef than cracking open a can of unidentified meat product), but it’s adventurous.
Stop judging it. It has feelings too.
This was the beginning of a glorious idea that all started when I was shopping for ranch dressing for a sorority event. I was going to get ground beef, but that gets expensive sometimes. Especially because I’m picky and like my 80/20.
Enter mysterious meat product, center stage/third row on the rack in asile 3. It was as if the food gods were giving me a sign. Go for it.
I mean, I had eradicated my roommate’s fear of Spam by making her Spam quesadillas for dinner at the beginning of our meager apartment life. And, surprise, SHE ENJOYED THEM.
So, lets continue with the cooking.
Cube that block of meat. Don’t be shy.
Now chop up some peppers and onion. As you can see, I chose a bright myriad of bell peppers. For visual as well as taste purposes. I like colors. Cooking can be artistic, fools.
Now toss it all in a pan with some olive oil and stir every so often. You want to get that brownish, crackling characteristic to your spam. It’ll get slightly crunchy in those spots. It’s a nice surprise.
Now, prior to doing all of these wonderful things, you should have prepared your empanada dough and chilled it for 30min. (I’m thinking about providing the recipes on a separate page…no, I will be providing these recipes on a separate page). Roll it out on a floured surface, thinly, but not TOO thinly. And cut it into good sized discs. I used a cereal bowl. Again, college solutions.
Once you have a well cooked spam party in your pan, go ahead and pack those empanada dough rounds and close with a wet fork. Slather on an egg wash if you wanna get fancy (I always do, makes me feel like I’m on the food network or something).
THEY LOOK SO GOOD. And they were fantastic.
Go make yourself some. Just do it. Trust me.
Spam is a friend.
But like…that friend that you only see in class and so you have this strange relationship where you socialize during that one time and never any other time. If you see each other in The Quad you don’t even say hello. But when you’re in that class you both share that mutual feeling of friendship. It’s nice. Good comparison. Education, it’s a thing. And it works. Right?
Fiesta on, foodies.