Monthly Archives: August 2014

Brief History of the Struggle Plate & Other Culinary Adventures

cher clueless burnt cookies

Like undercooked chicken, the #struggleplate is nothing new. We’ve all seen, eaten and made them. Yes, even if you now possess culinary prowess, once upon a time you too burned, undercooked or ruined a dish. Don’t lie!

Before Instagram & hashtags, gastronomically challenged meals were simply suffered through, with no photographic evidence. Let’s be real, no one was trying to waste film on shitty meals, even less getting those disasters developed. Then came along The Sugarhill Gang. This groundbreaking trio gave insufferable suppers a new life in Rapper’s Delight.

There are different types of struggle plates we’ve become familiar with:

1- Unsuccessful Attempt/Fail

This classifies a range of different meals. Meals which are burnt fit in this first category. Others would included meals which look nothing like those in the picture/on the box/at the restaurant. Unfortunately, appearances aren’t everything. Instagram ignores the possibility of an aesthetically pleasing dish that also happens to stimulate your gag reflex.

2- Unaware/Clueless

When the cook just doesn’t know what (or what not) to do. Common sense is not usually used for these struggle plates.clueless cher baking cookies

3- Ugly/Unappetizing (Even Martha Stewart has fallen victim)

BuzzFeed wrangled up a nice assortment of Martha Stewart’s unappetizing snaps. Otherwise, we’ve all seen ugly.

I’d like to add a fourth category. One we often neglect: undercooked.

4- Undercooked/Food Poisoning

If you’re lucky, you can pick around the unsafe bits. If you’re unlucky, however, you’ll either be making frequent trips to the Porcelain Princess or awkwardly apologizing, ashamed of your lacking culinary skills. And, if you’re the unluckiest, you’ll be doing both between bathroom breaks.

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Recently, I’ve just barely escaped that last one unscathed. See, I don’t like raw meat. I can’t touch it. I can barely even cook it (therein lies the problem). Once upon a time, I made meatloaf. It was a mildly traumatizing experience of plunging my hands into a mixture of raw turkey meat, eggs and oats. Ever since, I’ve been pretty squeamish about any meat that’s closer to the farm than being served. Also, I was a vegetarian for a bit, but that’s another story.

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How do you like your chicken? Medium rare?

I nearly killed my boyfriend with undercooked chicken*. Did I take a picture? No. I was unclear whether or not undercooked chicken is #struggleplate worthy. What criteria does a struggle plate need to meet in order to be qualified? Bad lighting? Presentation? Is it cool if I undercook my meat? Is #struggleplate appropriate or is undercooked chicken more of a #foodpoisoning situation?

Maybe insufficiently cooked chicken isn’t being Instagram’d for a reason. I think in order to earn your struggle plate hashtag, your meal must first and foremost be edible.

Have a cooking fail story you’d like to share? Any meat cooking tips?

*The rest of the dish was salvageable.

Sources: gif 1gif 2

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Casual Sex Not Just For The Single

couple intimate

Casual sex is good for you. Not only for singles but for couples too.

I have casual sex. I casually have sex with my boyfriend. Sometimes I shave my legs, sometimes I don’t. You don’t always have to dress to impress or wear the laciest underthings. Everyday we hear about how to rekindle that spark, add romance to our bedrooms and how to contort our bodies in crazy ways but casual sex within a relationship should also be praised and applauded. It feels good. Makes us feel good. And, chances are, probably won’t land you in the ER.

You can still have casual sex within a relationship. Contrary to popular belief, it is not reserved solely for singles or those in open relationships. That’s not what this is about. Casual, unplanned naked time where one thing leads to another. I’m not using “spontaneous” because it’s loaded with a ton of pressure. These days, you can pick up a number of magazines that will gladly drill “be spontaneous” into your heads and your beds. But that tends to fuel questions like “Am I spontaneous enough?” and various other feelings of inadequacy. You don’t have to be anything. If you’re in the mood & so is your boo, than that’s all that matters. Not stubble, not chipped nail polish, not your hair do.

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“Balance” and “moderation” are preached in nearly every area of our lives except for the bedroom. There’s this endless need to make it hotter, longer and better than the last, as if we’re competing for gold in the “Big O-lympics.” We are figuratively sucking the fun out of sex. The only thing worse than not getting enough of the good stuff is the pressure to be wilder, sexier and infinitely more skilled than every single time before. Fuck that. There’s no need to get all fancy every single time.

Don’t bend over backwards in an impossible position if you’re not feeling it. You can always catch a yoga class, when you’re less likely to pull a muscle in your groin. We should be easing cramps, not creating them. Besides, research says you’re not burning that many calories bumping & grinding anyway.

When is comes to casual sex within a relationship, we’re really talking about comfortable sex. Did you just cringe? Relax. When you’re comfortable in the moment and with each other, who’s to say you need anything else? People have been having sex long before rouge, high heels and handcuffs. Just wake up and on the right side of bed? If you’re partner’s up for the occasion, no reason why you need to skip to the loo, my darling. Try and be present. Casual sex should be something we can easily slide into.

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There’s no shame in initiating sexy time sans lingerie. Or binge watching a series on Netflix and engaging in foreplay. No candles? No problem. Shit won’t magically catch on fire while you’re busy getting busy. Your local fire department will thank you.

Not every sex session needs to bathed in candlelight accompanied by long, loving glances. Similarly, we don’t always need to perform like we’re auditioning for HBO. Sometimes bodies can just be bodies, even if you already know each other’s middle names.

Sure, laid back coupled sex might be the jean & t-shirt equivalent to a date night romp, but it’s still great. Don’t let the mixed signals fool you. Only you know what kind of sex you should or shouldn’t be having (or even at all). Your best bet? Do what suits the both (or all, if that’s more your thing) of you. If that looks a lot more casual, that’s okay too.

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