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Season of the Cookie: Chocolate Mint Sandwich Cookies

Thin Mints are now relics of your past. THIS is the cookie recipe girl scouts will kill to keep out of your hands!

Forget what The Bossa Nova favorite, “Once I Loved” tells you.  I am here to testify that love is in fact not the saddest thing when it goes away.  A plate of these chocolate mint sandwiches disappearing is far far worse.  It’s enough to send me to the bottom of the swimming pool in my apartment courtyard, sucking my thumb and desperately holding on to a lead teddy bear.

Think “chocolate covered mint Oreos” and you’re pretty much on board.

Here is that phenomenal cookie that will keep you up at night, as it quietly calls your name from that easily infiltrated plastic dessert container on your kitchen counter.  You know… the one you have every intention of taking with you to work the next day because you truly mean to share these sinfully rich cookies – gooey on the outside, crispy on the inside, and a rich chocolaty peppermint center – with your co-workers.

But really, is that actually going to happen?  What have your lousy co-workers really done for you?  A sheet cake with your name misspelled for your birthday and a Darth Vader Get Well card when you were sick (“I sense a disturbance in the force!”).

Fuck ‘em.

Share these with nobody.  And I guarantee that at least one of these cookies you end up eating while your pajamas are on.

Continue reading “Season of the Cookie: Chocolate Mint Sandwich Cookies” »

Posted 1 year, 10 months ago.

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Season of the Cookie: Carrot Cake Cookies

Billows of gooey cream cheese frosting sandwiched between two moist cookies bursting with oatmeal, carrots and raisins.  Meet the official Tv Food and Drink Halloween cookie.

I haven’t even begun to think about what I might dress up as for Halloween this year, and seeing as it’s only a few days away, I don’t intend to start now.  There’s no point in denying that as a result of bad planning and a embarrassingly short attention span I’ve wandered yet again into that shameful realm known as the “Halloween Scramble Zone.”  You know… that place where people come together and bravely try to justify the merits of such supremely lame and last-minute costumes as, “Hobo,” “Hippie,” “Cat” and “Toilet Paper Mummy.”

Yes, I’m also talking to you too, “Guy in Bathrobe,” “Working Out Girl,” and “Truck Driver.”

If you are going to dress up for Halloween, you have to put some pizazz and some planning into it.  At the very least, you must give it the old college try.  And no, that doesn’t mean you can go to your neighbor’s party in a cap and gown with a rolled up piece of sheet music you tore out of your little sister’s recital book.  That’s lame too.

Don’t stick a knife through a box of Cocoa Pebbles.  That doesn’t make you a “Cereal Killer.”

“Sexy Librarian” is no longer distinguishable from “Sarah Palin.”  Neither gets you laid anymore.

And just because it’s October 31st, wearing dirty clothes and no shoes so you can be “Homeless Guy” still qualifies you as a Prime Time Emmy-Winning Douche Canoe.

I’ll take a moment to address these knock-out cookies, though come on… is there anything else you really need to know?  The words “carrot cake” are in their name.  You can see the creamy frosting oozing out of the middle.  These are sweet, chewy, eye-poppingly decadent, and they will make you the star of any Halloween party.

As for you… guy in trench coat with black socks and dude sporting “This IS my costume!” on a t-shirt.  You can just move along to the orange-colored Rice Krispie Treats.  There’ll be no cookies for you.

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Posted 1 year, 10 months ago.

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Season of the Cookie: Raisin Pecan Oatmeal Cookies


Fall is fast approaching. Those of us here in Hollywood are breaking out the sweaters and leather jackets in anxious preparation for the two weeks of the year it’s actually cool enough to wear them. The scorcher days of August have given way to September cloud cover and occasional showers, which means soon my car will be clean again.

Autumn is definitely my favorite time of the year. I approve of the setting of clocks back and nights getting darker earlier.  It keeps me home more often and gets me into the kitchen more regularly.  The cooler evening weather also ups my cookie-making quotient considerably.  I’ve got a few hundred recipes tucked away thanks to cookbooks, family members, and recipes I’ve been introduced to from my friends from the blogosphere, most especially Smitten Kitchen and Lake Lure Cottage Kitchen.

In fact, it’s from the fantastic Penny at Lake Lure that I discovered these amazing raisin pecan oatmeal cookies.  Sweet and chewy with just the right amount of pecan snap, they’re a can’t-miss receipe, even for new bakers.

So let’s all say goodbye to summer here in the goold old Northern hemisphere.  Toss those drink umbrellas, tiki cups and hurricane glasses into the cellar and break out the electric mixers, ceramic bowls and the extra stash of dental floss.  Cookie season has begun here at Tv Food and Drink.com!

Continue reading “Season of the Cookie: Raisin Pecan Oatmeal Cookies” »

Posted 1 year, 10 months ago.

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Season of the Cookie: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe Halloween

Through these cookies, you will come to understand why it is necessary for me to keep all my toilet paper in the trunk of my car.

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Posted 1 year, 10 months ago.

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Season of the Cookie: Peanut Butter Cookies


Have you ever wondered why you’re supposed to use the fork to make those little criss-cross marks on the tops of peanut butter cookies?
Continue reading “Season of the Cookie: Peanut Butter Cookies” »

Posted 1 year, 10 months ago.

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Pineapple Salsa

I found myself escorting home a free pineapple we used for an on-camera prop during the show several days ago, and was trying to come up with something else to do with it besides juice it, cube it and eat it every morning for breakfast for ninieteen days, or attach it to the top of my head, swing a poncho around my neck and parade around my apartment like Chita Rivera (Carmen Miranda?).

Here and there online, I had caught site of some recipes for pineapple salsa along with the recommendation that it goes wonderfully with fish. I wasn’t completely sold. That is no longer the case.

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Posted 1 year, 10 months ago.

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Season of the Cookie: Cream Cheese Walnut Cookies (How to Make “Halloween Brains”)


Butter continues to be the primary ingredient in most of the latest creations that have sprung to life in my rinky-dinky Holly Hobbie kitchen. Papered in the image of an Indian maiden holding a butter box (Land O’ Lakes), salted or unsalted (my brief research into the subject indicates that either can be used in a recipe that demands one or the other – any argument?), I have not been able to keep enough on hand to prevent me from stopping at the Rock and Roll Ralphs on Sunset every other day to replenish my supply. But even I consider it a bit much when a recipe calls for FOUR FULL STICKS of the stuff.

Happily, I didn’t let that stop me from making this recipe. These babies will SET YOU FREE!

Continue reading “Season of the Cookie: Cream Cheese Walnut Cookies (How to Make “Halloween Brains”)” »

Posted 1 year, 10 months ago.

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Smoked Salmon Potato Pizza with Lemon Dill Sauce: Recipe Swap (With Video of the Most Dangerous Job in Television)

It’s Monday, but hey… it could be worse. You could have a job that includes the words “live television” and “portable rigging.”

Come one! Come all! See the big finale to Miss Vivian’s act while performing on the ABC children’s show Super Circus (1949-1956) below, followed by my interpretation of this month’s Burwell General Store recipe swap.

If you’re hoping for the inclusion of dark red pickled beets, you’ve come to the wrong TvFoodAndDrink.com
Continue reading “Smoked Salmon Potato Pizza with Lemon Dill Sauce: Recipe Swap (With Video of the Most Dangerous Job in Television)” »

Posted 1 year, 10 months ago.

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French Pork Pies (Tourtières) OR “Keep on Looking Busy for the Love of TV”




Don’t tell anyone this, but sometimes when I’m bored at work I go into the men’s room and watch myself in the mirror while I angle my arms in different directions and pretend I’m a hieroglyphic.

Other times I sit at my desk and stare silently, with a balance of frustration and thought on my face.  You’d swear I was trying to work out a production issue.  But in my head, I’m actually deciding what music I want played at my funeral.  I’m nearly ceratin that the “thinking theme” from Match Game ‘76 is what I’d like for when they carry my casket out of the church.

Working in television is not glamorous.  Appearing on television is glamorous, but working in television is just long hours.  Minimum ten to twelve a day, sometimes sixteen or more, almost all of it on your feet when you’re in production, and then far too much of it in a chair when you’re in post-production.

You’re often working out of rooms with no windows, overhead Gestapo lighting, a shortage of trash cans, and heavy, boxy old Mac desktop computers that crash when they try to bring up a website and auto-save a phone list at the same time. The kitchen has nothing but diet sodas, Hershey’s Miniatures and Cheez-Its.  You may start a television show eager and optimistic.  But by the time the show spits you out the other end, you’re pale, your pants don’t fit, and you discover all your house plants are dead.

But there’s no time to express how tired you are while you’re in the thick of it.  You’re almost always behind schedule.  Your shows aren’t being edited fast enough. The network has decided your set should be red instead of lime green even though you wrapped production six weeks ago and the set is sitting in a dumpster in Lancaster.  Also, you can’t use that shot of the breaded chicken strips you desperately need because the camera caught some idiot standing where he shouldn’t have been standing, and upon closer inspection, it turns out that idiot is you.

You just have to keep working.  You have to always be busy.

And when you’re not busy, you have to make it appear to everyone else that you are.

When I absolutely can’t concentrate on work any more, I’ll pick up a piece of paper and walk around the halls for ten minutes or so with a look of rushed worry on my face.  Another producer might say, “What are you working on?” and I’ll say to them, “Trust me.  You DO NOT want to know.”  And then they’ll run away from me as fast as they can, like I’ve just started talking about my experiences with prison sex.

Sometimes I have the phone up to my ear and when someone comes up to assign me another task, I just hold up the “can’t do it right now” finger, then point at the phone and make a sad face.  They’ll walk away thinking I’m trying to convince a contestant to sign that release form no one remembered to have them sign before they appeared on the show. They’ll never know what I’m actually doing is listening to what time Spring Breakers is playing in theaters across the country, one zip code at a time.

I believe in breaks, but television production does not, so I have to make them happen any way I can.  I’m really not qualified to participate in any other field except show business.  Thankfully in show business, with a lot of stamina, a little bit of brains, and a massive talent for being able to trick people into believing what you want them to believe – home viewers, studio audience members, the person about to hire you –  you can go very, very, very far!

I’d share more tricks on how to always “look busy,” but I’m under the gun to get these pork pies done in time for dinner tonight.

Or am I??

Continue reading “French Pork Pies (Tourtières) OR “Keep on Looking Busy for the Love of TV”” »

Posted 1 year, 11 months ago.

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Señor Verde’s Gaucho Pie

You really do have to be careful what you wish for. I’d say I went too long without a producing job, and while I was endlessly scrolling through employment sites, making calls, and creating multiple versions of my resume to make sure I had every angle of Hollywood covered, I would routinely say to myself, “Boy, I’d be happy with just about any producing job.”

Then I got one.
Now I’m working long days that often lurch well into the nights, my feet hurt from the countless hours running around on stage, my clothes all smell like amazing dishes I never get a chance to sample, and my ears ache from headset wear. And I’m routinely saying to myself, “Boy, I’d be happy with just a few days off to cook.”

Don’t consider this a complaint by any means. Beat the Chefs is going to be a really fun show. And if you have GSN, I hope you’ll tune in when it premieres on Thursday, August 23 at 9:00 pm ET/PT.  I’m really thrilled to be a part of it, not just because I get to watch three amazing pro chefs do their thing, but I’ve also gotten to meet some wildly talented cooks from across the country, and I’ve watched many of them go on to cooking show glory!

A bit of the press release for the show follows. And I’ll certainly be posting pics and details on my producing time on the show once the episodes hit the air. Even better… I will absolutely be re-creating many of the recipes from the show here in the months to come, so get ready for a food-fueled fall here at Tv Food and Drink!

Lastly, after you check out the 4-1-1 on the show below, I highly recommend clicking through and taking a look the recipe for this gaucho pie. It got more flaky and flavorful with each passing day, and kept me fed through an entire week of no cooking time whatsoever.  Since it’s disappeared, I’ve had to mostly subsist on turkey sandwiches slapped together in 30 seconds and dark chocolate bars dipped in the giant jar of peanut butter living out its days in my fridge.  Whoever said the Hollywood life is glamorous clearly worked as a longshoreman.

BEAT THE CHEFS is an hour-long show, in which everyday people who love to cook set out to prove that their family recipes are worth prize money and bragging rights. Each week, the show pits homegrown talents against three professional chefs as they cook the same dish—from firehouse chili to Grandma’s famous chicken and dumplings—with one question in mind: Whose tastes the best? A panel of critics will judge and decide if the amateurs can “beat the chefs,” and if they can do it, a cash prize of $25,000 is theirs!

The show’s three regular chefs are…

Chef Beau MacMillan – Known for his victory over Bobby Flay on “Iron Chef America” and as co-host of “Worst Cooks in America,” Beau MacMillan is executive chef of Elements restaurant at The Sanctuary resort in Arizona, named one of the “Top 100 Restaurants in America” by Gourmet. MacMillan trained at the prestigious Johnson & Wales University and is acclaimed for his distinctive style, using the freshest ingredients to create American food with Asian accents.

Chef Antonia Lofaso is familiar to foodies as a fierce competitor and favorite on “Top Chef” and a finalist on “Top Chef All-Stars.” After graduating from the French Culinary Institute in New York City, she began her career at Wolfgang Puck’s famed Spago in Beverly Hills and later went on to run the kitchen at Los Angeles hot spot Foxtail. She currently serves as consulting chef for Black Market Liquor Bar in Studio City, California. Her first book, The Busy Mom’s Cookbook, will be released in August 2012.

Chef Jeff Henderson was the first African-American executive chef at the Bellagio in Las Vegas, a sought-after public speaker and author of the New York Times bestselling memoir Cooked. A former at-risk youth who turned his life around after discovering his talent for cooking, Henderson has proven to be an inspiration to others. After apprenticing with renowned chef Robert Gadsby, he worked his way up through 5-star restaurants around the country, including the Hotel Bel-Air and L’Ermitage Beverly Hills, before landing at the 5-diamond Bellagio hotel in Las Vegas. He will open his own restaurant in Los Angeles in 2013.

Click Here for My Recipe for Mexican “Gaucho Pie”

Posted 2 years ago.

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Lemon Sponge Pie with Oreo Cookie Crust: Recipe Swap

This is my first month participating in the Burwell General Store Recipe Swap.  Burwell General Store is a fantastic food blog run by my new friend Christianna who I recently met while working on Beat the Chefs for Game Show Network. Though we were on the same show, we actually have only been in the presence of one another a handful of times.  Nevertheless, as is often the case when two foodies with extroverted personalities run into one another, it was admiration at first sight.

Once a month Christianna sends to all the Burwell swapping participants a recipe from The Second Ford Treasury of Favorite Recipes From Famous Eating Places, compiled in 1954.  Participants are asked to re-create the recipe and put their own spin on it in the process.  This month it was Lemon Sponge Pie, as presented by the Old Court House Tea Room in New Castle, Delaware.

As I am of the type to duly investigate a subject before diving in (see my post on Heidi Bohay and the NuWave oven), I pulled the old Google off the shelf and learned what I could about the Tea House’s history before deciding on my “in” for changing up the recipe.  Here’s what I learned:

There’s great debate on how old the New Castle Court House actually is, though a 1952 article from Wilmington’s The Sunday Star confirms that the Delaware state constitution was adopted there in the 1780s. The accompanying Tea Room, however, didn’t open its doors until 1926, when it began luring in with food and drink the Delaware passengers lining up to board the ferry to New Jersey.

A quick call to the court house informed me that the tea room disappeared in the early 1950s. According to the court house supervisor/museum curator, its fate was sealed in April 1945 when the Delaware State Highway Department authorized construction of a bridge which would connect New Castle to Pennsville, New Jersey, thus eliminating the need for the ferry.  No ferry meant no line of people outside the tea room, and no line of people meant lots of Oolong and lemon sponge cake left untouched in the kitchen. On August 15, 1951, The Del Memorial Bridge officially opened… the final nail in the coffin for the birthplace of this month’s recipe.

Here’s something else: On July 2, 1938, a 10 year old Shirley Temple lunched at the Old Court House Tea Room with her parents, business manager, and friends. Shirley had a chicken sandwhich, a piece of cheese, and a chocolate milkshake! Over 300 people turned out to greet Shirley on Delaware Street up on her exit.  No word on whether she took the ferry to Jersey.

So I decided to take my cue for twisting up this month’s recipe from Miss Temple’s visit to the Tea room.  I have yet to read anywhere that lemon sponge pie pairs well with chicken or cheese, so I zeroed in on the chocolate, adding an Oreo crust for the bottom and a chocolate shell for the top.  I won’t say it made for the most attractive pictures as no matter how delicately I pierced the shell on top it immediately cracked into chocolate shards each time.  But the flavor combination more than made up for what this rich, citrusy dessert lacked in camera flair.

You can check out my recipe, and the rest of the Burwell interpretations below.

Click Here for my Recipe Twist on Lemon Sponge Pie

Posted 2 years ago.

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Three Berry Pie with Brown Sugar Topping



I didn’t intend for this to be the pie I made to celebrate having to put my cat to sleep, but that’s the way it turned out.

Z had been back and forth to the vet for about a week, and the ultimate diagnosis was a cyst inside his intestine which would most likely have just grown back had I spent the several thousand dollars on surgery to have it removed.  His disposition in that week had altered itself from playful and relaxed to sullen and despondent. He wasn’t eating or drinking, and he couldn’t use his box.  It was clear he could not find a comfortable position for himself to rest.

I started this pie in the late afternoon, while wallowing in denial over what would have to be done.  Michael arrived later in the evening and talked me back into reality.  Without being able to use his box, there wasn’t a lot of time for Z.  None of us were benefitting from delay.  So after a few more crying sessions, I finally caved and said to Michael between sniffles, “Ok… let me just get this pie out of the oven, and while it’s cooling we’ll take Z in, and then when we get back we can eat it.”


I understand dividing my attentions between a dying cat and a three berry pie with brown sugar topping might seem a bit coarse.  But once I had accepted what needed to be done for Z, it was no longer tough for me.  We had shared fourteen years of companionship and he’d been content and healthy through all of it. Below is the last picture we took of him.  The heart sleeve on his paw is covering up the IV that was delivering the dose that would move him on.  He was at ease all the way through the end, purring and nuzzling me.  I could not have asked for a better end for him.

It’s been over a month now, and I’m starting to hear the call of kittens at the Saturday afternoon pet adoption fairs outside the Petco on Sunset.  But I’ll hold off a while longer.

And we did go back home that night and eat the pie.  We topped it with ice cream. We each had two giant slices.  At his peak, Z weighed approximately 19 pounds, so I’m sure he would have wanted nothing else for us.

Continue reading “Three Berry Pie with Brown Sugar Topping” »

Posted 2 years, 1 month ago.

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Chickpea Chicken Potpie with Cornbread Crust (Or “We All Lie to the Neighbors”)

A new neighbor moved in across the hall from me this week.  New neighbors are wonderful because when you introduce yourself to them, you can create an entirely original and more impressive personality for yourself – free of all bad habits, unhealthy addictions and the weight of your life’s crushing disappointments – the same way you do when you’re on a first date, or appearing on a game show.

The name of my new neighbor is Rhonda.  When Rhonda asked me what I did for a living, I mentally spun through my regular collection of “neighbor lies,” and found them all completely worn out.  So I went full improv and told her I used to be a seal trainer but now worked as a personal chef for John Stamos, who only popped into my head because earlier in the day I’d been scrolling through an article entitled “Ten Hottest Actors in Their Forties” to make sure I still looked younger than all of them.

Normally when you’re lying it’s important not to get too creative in case you’re confronted with sudden follow-up questions you aren’t prepared to answer.  But it’s different with neighbors.  If Rhonda had thrown me a curve ball about the mating habits of the Hawaiian Monk Seal or whether Dave Coulier was also loveable and kooky in real life, I could have easily rolled out, “Uh oh, I smell something burning!” or “Is that my alarm clock?” and dashed through my front door.  Really, since neighbors are ready to accept just about anything from one another if it means they can make an early escape from small talk, I could have gone completely out to left field and just said, “I’ve got to go adjust my grow lamps,” or “I think I left my cat trapped in the shower!” and Rhonda probably still wouldn’t have touched it.

Then Rhonda informed me she was a mental health therapist.  She also told me not to worry if I saw unfamiliar faces around, since she met with patients out of her home.

It probably should have alarmed me that needing to present an entirely fictitious version of myself to Rhonda only five minutes into knowing her pointed to some severe emotional problems.  But it didn’t.  I was too busy being delighted in the knowledge that if I tiptoed out into the hallway and listened at her door, I could get sessions for free!

And anyway, I’ll make up for the dishonesty by bringing Rhonda lots and lots of food.  I’ll even have more money to step up the ingredients now that I’m going to be able to fire my own therapist.  I was getting tired of pretending I was a contributing writer to Vanity Fair anyway.

Recipe for Chickpea Chicken Potpie with Cornbread Crust Here

Posted 2 years, 2 months ago.

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Rocky Road Cookies (Part of the “Keep Your Man Employed” Series)

Chocolate chips, walnuts, pecans and marshmallows melted together with a rich, dark, decadent bittersweet chocolate-infused batter. These cookies are sweet, chunky, chewy, gooey and sticky. It also produces probably the best uncooked batter that will ever smack up against your tongue!


The plan was to keep MG gainfully employed forever by regularly flooding his workplace with homemade cookies. But now I fear my delicately-constructed scheme may collapse before my very eyes.

MG is home sick!

(By the way, I wanted to take a picture of MG in bed looking like hell this morning and post it here for you all to see, but he threatened to lick my iPhone top to bottom if I did.)

It’s frustrating when the person you love is sick. There’s only so much you can do, and most of the time the invalid in question would rather be left alone anyway. Nevertheless, I fulfilled my obligations as healthy boyfriend. I performed all the required acts…. the “concerned sad frown,” the “shoulder pet,” and the “Florence Nightingale bedside sit.”

Then I got to the part I really love… the “Sick Person Supermarket Sweep!” Of course, you grab everything your loved one requests, but then you add a couple of fun surprises to maintain their spirits and keep their minds challenged. These items must be under ten dollars and totally useless to anyone with a fever of less than 100. If you’re a kid, that means mom or dad brings you home bubbles, kazoos, playing cards or paddleballs. For MG, I picked up a book I knew would keep him engrossed for the entire afternoon… Hot for Fireman!

Katie Dane knows better than to mix business and pleasure, but her new bartender, Ryan Blake, is simply irresistible.

Ryan, the sexy heartbreaker of Station One, is determined to rejoin the force. Tending bar in the meantime seems like the perfect idea, especially when it means he can spend his nights working next to his sultry new boss . .  if only the bar didn’t keep catching fire!

Throw in a grizzled career criminal,  a Fireman bachelorette party, and a million-dollar money pot, and suddenly playing with fire never seemed so much like falling in love.

MG’s face didn’t convey the level of gratitude and pride you might expect from a person just presented a book entitled Hot for Fireman!  But I’m sure that’s just the sickness talking.  If he’s still sick tomorrow, I’m going to bring him all my Knots Landing DVDs and is he’s still sick the day after that I’m going to bring the VHS tape I bought off E-bay featuring every single Erica Kane wedding from All My Children.

If that doesn’t get his ass back to work, I don’t know what will.

Rocky Road Cookie Recipe – Click Here!

Posted 2 years, 2 months ago.

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Browned Butter Sugar Cookies (Part of the “Keep Your Man Employed” Series)

When telemarketers call my home in the middle of the day and cheerfully ask, “Hi!  May I speak to Mister or Misses Green?” I usually shout back woefully, “Misses Green has been dead for eight days now.  Who are you… and why do you keep doing this to me?”

After a momentary gap of dread, the telemarketer begins desperately apologizing in clumsy stammers and half-sentences, and when I feel like they’ve suffered enough I interrupt them by saying, “You sound hot.  What do you like in the bedroom?”  Before they can recover, I hang up on them.

The tingling afterglow I experience from indulging in little weekday funsies like this has convinced me that I could be a stay-at-home husband for the rest of my life and never be bored.  Why did I spend so many years convincing myself that the keys to a fulfilled life were challenging my creative limits and building myself a robust career outside of the home, when it’s just as rewarding to watch Franklin and Bash all day in my bathrobe while I’m drinking iced mochas and painting my nails?

Continue reading “Browned Butter Sugar Cookies (Part of the “Keep Your Man Employed” Series)” »

Posted 2 years, 3 months ago.

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Cornmeal Thyme Cookies (Part of the “Keep Your Man Employed” Series and the “Pictures of Paralyzed Chihuahuas” Series)

When Michael sent me this picture earlier today from the Robot Chicken animation studios, I texted him immediately and asked if this guy was going to mind having his face on my website.  Michael responded: “Oh, no.  Kevin is an attention whore.  He’d LOVE to be on your site!”  And so for Kevin the attention whore, the road to fame and notoriety begins here today at TvFoodAndDrink.com.

Michael tells me a lot of stories about the characters he works with, but I rarely see these people in person.  I may meet them at a wrap party or a Christmas party, but months will pass in between, and I’ll inevitably forget which face belongs to which name.  It’s a character flaw, but it isn’t limited to Michael’s co-workers.  I can’t even keep track of my remote control.  The other day I found it on top the cat box out on the balcony.

So when Michael texted me last week, simply saying, “Olive is here!” boy did I feel the pressure.  I knew he was waiting for an appropriate response, but I hadn’t a clue who “Olive” was.  The few of Michael’s co-workers I have managed to burn into my sickly memory banks I’ve done so by associating with things I’ve learned about them or moments I’ve shared with them:  “Joy who’s getting married,” “Tommy who lives downtown,” “Trish who used to work at Starbucks,” “Jeanette who I got drunk with,” “Dan who has the blog,” “Sarah who I made hot dogs for that one time.”

But who the hell was Olive?

I decided to roll the dice.  It was clear Olive didn’t work with MG or he wouldn’t have felt the need to celebrate her appearance.  Instead, I figured it had to be a loved one associated with someone at work – the kind who is occasionally brought into the office for a special guest appearance, to be coddled and adored over while work goes completely ignored for twenty to thirty minutes.

So I texted Michael back, “Oh… Olive!  Is that the baby… or the paralyzed chihuahua?”

I figured I might be able to trick Michael into thinking I at least almost knew who Olive was by narrowing it down to two possible options.

But I was wrong on both counts.

Olive is a pug… a pug with four fully functioning legs.  Boyfriend points denied.

If we’re out together and someone Michael recognizes waves at us and begins an approach, I quickly lean in and whisper, “Do I know them?” and Michael either assures me I don’t, or gives me a lightning fast bio so I don’t make an fool of myself, just like Emily Blunt did for Meryl Streep in The Devil Wears Prada.  “That’s Rick.  We met him at Comic-Con.  He lives in the hills.  He does calligraphy.”

And for that, but not that alone, I will always be grateful to Michael.  And I will always make him cookies to share with his co-workers. Even Kevin the attention whore.


By the way… I wasn’t making up the paralyzed chihuahua.  You can see a picture below. You ought to watch the way that baby can get around on those back wheels, coasting and swerving through all the legs at Robot Chicken and snapping up every dropped cheese puff in sight!

I can’t decide who I like the most… paralyzed chihuahua, Olive the pug, or Kevin the attention whore.  But one thing is certain. Now that they’re all on my website, I’ll forever have a short-cut to remembering which is which.

Click Here for Recipe for Cornmeal Thyme Cookies from Martha Stewart

Posted 2 years, 3 months ago.

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Whipped Ricotta with Thyme and Oregano on Grilled Country Bread

I could live with rain, gray skies and wind all year round.  I find dark, gloomy, damp weather stimulating… charged with silence and secrets and the temptation to indulge in sneaky, nefarious behavior, the likes of which you might regularly encounter on shows like Dark Shadows or The Edge of Night (the former I’m too young to have caught, the latter I watched religiously every day… Kim Hunter, cursed movie sets and killer clown puppets? You could have tried to stop me, but how well do think that would have gone for you?)

 

My noir temperament is definitely more suited to settings like San Francisco, Seattle or London.  But I live in Hollywood. Here, it’s bright and mild almost all of the time.  Litter-soaked alleyways are exposed by far too much sunlight to ever look sinister.  No one wears trench coats or fox fur hats or ankle-length raven’s black capes, except for me.

Instead, everything is ho-hum conspicuous in Hollywood.  Not even the sunsets are devious.

So, MG and I will make the best of the predictably obvious Los Angeles summer that is almost at a close.  We’ll reluctantly spend  evenings enjoying vistas just like this from the balcony or possibly the roof.  I’ll work my producer skills to their furthest to compensate for the lack of atmosphere.  Candles on the railing.  Bernard Herrmann from the living room speakers.   Sage and basil positioned to be picked up by the breeze.  And an eighteen pound cat we’ll both pretend is the Orson Welles character from Touch of Evil.


Click here to get recipes for Whipped Ricotta with Thyme and Oregano and Grilled Country Bread

Posted 2 years, 3 months ago.

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10 Cinco de Mayo Recipes!

If you’re still looking for ways to wow your friends and family with a one-of-a-kind Mexican feast this Cinco de Mayo, here come the Top 10 Latin-themed recipes that should definitely be crowding your table this weekend.

Some are wild, some are mild, but they’re all rich in flavor. More importantly, they all go well with a chilled Tecate or a shot of tequlia. Have a great weekend!


Habanero Pizza

It may look like a traditional Italian pie, but this sauce carries a kick that definitely comes from South of the Border! Those who like to avoid foods that make their eyes water will not be put off, though they will receive a subtle indication with each bite that there’s something sneaky going on. It’s just a pinch of heat that won’t linger on the tongue but will definitely make its inclusion known.

Click here for the recipe




Next… Tomatillo Sauce and Guacamole

Posted 2 years, 4 months ago.

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Cheesecake Marbled Browines Recipe 2012 (Part of the “Keep Your Man Employed” Series)

Today, I sent my man off to work with a double batch of these babies.

You may be saying to yourself, “But Gary… you go to such great lengths in the kitchen, and then you let MG take all those brownies to work with him?”

And I’d answer, “yes.” Because when the hubby goes to work with cheesecake brownies made from scratch, his stage (he’s an animator) becomes the focal point of the production offices.

When his stage becomes the focal point of the production offices, he’s more readily able to showcase not only his brilliant animating skills, but also his winning personality and magical blue eyes.

When he showcases his brilliant animating skills, his winning personality and magical blue eyes, co-workers say, “Wow, that Michael Granberry is something special!”

When co-workers say, “Wow, that Michael Granberry is something special!” they’re more likely to throw promotions, raises and multi-million dollar production deals his way.

When co-workers throw promotions, raises and multi-million dollar production deals his way, he becomes a Hollywood hotshot, all his career dreams come true, and I get a swimming pool!


So yes, the brownies go to work with MG.  Just like the oatmeal truffle cookies did last week, and the yet-to-be-determined dessert will next week.

And the week after that, and the week after that, and the week after that.

And whenever Michael comes home with good news from the office, I close my eyes, smile, and say to him, “I can almost smell the chlorine already!”

Get Cheesecake Marbled Brownie Recipe Here

Posted 2 years, 4 months ago.

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Moroccan-Spiced Spaghetti Squash

Every recipe I read for preparing spaghetti squash warns that if one intends to cook the squash without cutting it in half, one must never forget to pierce it numerous times with a sharp knife about an inch deep to prevent bursting.

I, personally would LOVE to roll the dice and cook myself up a hot “squash bomb,” and if I was living in my old apartment I would have done it, because the splattering of wet hot spaghetti meat and moist squash skin on my kitchen walls would have actually been an improvement.  But I probably won’t make one now that I’m in my new place, where cleaning the refrigerator actually has an effect, the floors aren’t covered with scratches and the smoke alarm doesn’t go off every time I go to boil a hot dog.

Click here for Moroccan-Spiced Spaghetti Squash Recipe

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Posted 2 years, 4 months ago.

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