Tag Archives: food

Cooking Shows

Cooking shows are awesome. That’s why there’s a whole network about food. I used to not enjoy them. That was mostly because I was stoned and being tortured by tantalizing food that I couldn’t eat. Now I see cooking shows for what they are: a celebration of culinary creations that bring people together. Food is the great equalizer. Everyone needs to eat. It’s only natural to talk about the things we share. Different cultures have different cuisines and you can’t travel the world without expanding your palette. Cooking is an art and the cooks depicted have honed their craft.

Cooking shows are the televised window to all the things you are missing out on. They make you want to go to Vietnam and eat phò. Or to Mexico for some tacos al pastor. Every host enjoys the food too much and always praises it highly, and that makes me want to try it more for some reason. I want to scrutinize it and put it to the test. Every meal brings them to orgasm. Can it really be that good? Let’s see.

Cooking shows are postcards to what the world has to offer. It’s great to look at but it’s not real until you experience it for yourself. They give you incentive to try new things.

Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Don’t Touch My Chicken Wing

I was starving at work the other day and brought some buffalo wings into the breakroom to scarf down. I sat down and one of my coworkers had the audacity to take one of my wings without asking me first. She just reached her grubby little hand out and snatched one. Well, that really pissed me off and I let her know it. I grabbed the wing back from her and threw it away. I asked her who the fuck she thought she was. I told her that we weren’t homies. She doesn’t get to eat my food. She doesn’t get to touch my food. I let her know that she would have gotten one if she had simply asked. I said none of this nicely, mind you. I was fucking livid. I walked out of the breakroom and handed out a couple of wings to coworkers that I actually am friends with, knowing that they would take the wings back to the breakroom and she would see them eating the same wings that I had fiercely defended. They can have my wings. Her entitled self is forbidden. 

Looking back on it, I know that I overreacted but justice comes at a price. The moral of the story is don’t touch my chicken wing. Don’t assume you can just take one without asking. It’s my food. It’s my property. But if you ask, I’ll be more than happy to let you have one. I might even offer you some ranch to dip it in.

Critically Rated at 11/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Backpacking Food

Backpacking food is food that you take backpacking. I realize that you can take lots of food backpacking, so this post is focusing primarily on freeze dried food in a sealed bag that you add boiling water to in order to cook it. It’s kind of like a cup of noodles on steroids. There are quite a few different brands to chose from, but it seems like I always end up getting Mountain House or Backpacker’s Pantry. Both offer a wide variety of meals that provide you with a shit ton of caleries to get your energy back after a day on the trail. There are staple dishes like beef stroganoff, bacon and eggs, chicken and rice, etc. but they also have more exotic meals now too. I had beef pho and huevos rancheros on my last backpacking trip. Whatever brand or meal you chose, it’s a great way to reward yourself after lugging a heavy bag on your back for twelve miles. It’s even better with a couple swigs of whiskey.

Critically Rated at 13/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Drunk Food

 One of the best things about getting drunk is getting drunk food. Drunk food is a complete meal you can eat with your hands that fills you up and is served quickly. Certain foods taste better when you’re inebriated. Pizza is always good, but it’s so much better when you’re drunk. A drunk burrito in between bars keeps your night going. Stumbling across a street vendor selling bacon-wrapped hot dogs will make you believe that God is real and wants us to be happy. Drunk food provides you with the much needed fuel to keep on drinking. It makes the party last longer. You know you had a good night when you find an empty pizza box on the counter when you wake up the next morning and no recollection of getting it. I’m not promoting binge drinking, I’m promoting eating food when you’re binge drinking. There’s a slight difference I’m sure. 

Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Cooking Microwavable Food in the Oven 

 I like to eat food but I’m not much of a cook. I usually go out for dinner or get microwavable food. I don’t cook it in the microwave though. I cook it in the oven. It takes a lot longer but it makes it tastes more like real food. And there’s less radiation involved. A lot of people don’t seem to realize that you can cook most microwavable food in the oven but if you flip over your box of Hot Pockets you’ll see that they have directions for microwave ovens and for conventional ovens. Toaster ovens are shit out of luck though. The only major downside to cooking microwavable food in the oven is that you’re still eating microwavable food. Nothing beats a home cooked meal.
 Critically Rated at 11/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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The Menu

I have a great idea for a trendy new restaurant. It would be called The Menu and it would have an interesting shtick (because every trendy new restaurant should have an interesting shtick). It’s called The Menu because you can only order off the menu. No modifiers, no substitutions, no upsells. The menu is the menu. You can either order something or get the fuck out, it’s as simple as that. I might let you specify the burger or steak temperature, but only if I like you. Don’t even ask about gluten-free options. It’s all gluten. There would be a list of drinks, appetizers, entrées, sides, and desserts. If you don’t see it, you can’t get it. Of course the menu would change from time to time. It’s important to shake things up every once in a while and variety is the spice of life. So come to The Menu, where the menu is the menu.

Critically Rated at 16/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Finding Forgotten Food in the Freezer

I came home kind of late the other night and I was kind of tipsy. I needed food. I didn’t think that I had any. I checked the freezer just to be sure. I found a half-empty box of Bagel Bites. I was beyond stoked. I let out a cheer and did a victory dance. Finding forgotten food in the freezer is like hitting the late night munchie jackpot. A minute earlier and my stomach was growling and I was desperate for food. A minute later and I suddenly had five little bagel pizzas to scarf down. I popped that shit in the oven, because fuck the microwave. If you’re going to eat Bagel Bites, you have to do it right. Microwaving them leaves them soggy and bland. Baking them in the oven makes them crispy and delicious. They go great with a cold soda or a can of PBR. I didn’t mean for this post to turn into a commercial for Bagel Bites. These things write themselves, I just go along with it. There’s no denying that when pizza is on a bagel, you can eat pizza anytime.

Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Food Fight (redux)

A food fight is people throw food at each other instead of eating it. It’s a staple of physical comedy. There’s something oddly satisfying about seeing someone getting smashed in the face with a pie. There are a few types of food fights. There are Hollywood food fights and there are real food fight fights. A Hollywood food fight is pretty cliché. Two hot girls fight by pouring milkshakes over each other’s heads and down their dresses. The young protagonist stands up to the bully in the cafeteria and uses food instead of fists to settle a problem, then a random fat kid yells “FOOD FIGHT!” and everyone gets in on it.

Real food fights can be organized, like Spain’s annual La Tomatina festival where thousands of participants hurl hundreds of thousand tomatoes at each other, or they can be spontaneous. Sometimes the best way to settle a family argument is to throw a spoonful of mashed potatoes at your little sister. Of course if you flick the first spoonful you should expect two spoonfuls in return. Food fights are only fun when they escalate. And they are contagious so you have to be careful. It’s hard to see people fighting with food and not want to join in on the fun.

There’s nothing more American than fighting with food. There are starving kids in China, but fuck them and fuck you, I’d rather spit peas at people than eat them. If I want to waste food, I’m going to do it with style.

Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Acquired Taste

An acquired taste is a slowly developed appreciation for a beverage or food. For instance, most people don’t enjoy alcohol the first time they try it. They have to force it down. The more they drink it, the more used to the taste they get, and gradually they start to enjoy it. It’s kind of dumb in a funny sort of way. I don’t like this. This is gross. But I’m going to keep drinking it regardless. Ugh, let me choke down another sip. Blah. Another sip. You know what? It’s not so bad. Not good, but not terrible. Another sip. It’s growing on me. Sip, sip, sip. Mmm, this is good. I wonder if it comes in other flavors. Before you know it, you’re a connoisseur of sorts trying to get other people to try what you once hated.

Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Outside Food

I work in a restaurant and I’m surprised at how many people try to bring in outside food. They will bring in hot dogs, chowder bowls, pretzels, ice cream cones, etc. Then they act shocked when you tell them that they can’t bring outside food inside. Some of them get mad about it. They will try to argue, they will try to justify it, and they will come up with some bullshit excuse as to why they should be allowed to bring it in. The bottom line is that you’re going to a restaurant to eat the food that it offers. That’s the whole point of going there. You don’t need to go to a restaurant if you already have food in your grubby little hand. So don’t go. Stay outside, enjoy your outside food, and you can come in once it’s finished to see what they have to offer inside. It’s as simple as that. You don’t go to the movies to watch Netflix on your phone. You don’t go to the bar with a beer in your hand. What makes you think it’s ok to go to a restaurant if you’re not going to eat their food? Oy, people suck.

Critically Rated at 4/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Food Coma

Thanksgiving is almost amongst us, and that means that there will be an epidemic of food comas across the world. A food coma is where you eat so much food that you become physically incapable of movement. Americans suffer from food comas the most. That’s because we have an abundant source of food and are attracted to gluttony. The only cure for a food coma is to rub your belly and complain about having a food coma. Then you digest a little and eat some pumpkin pie. You might wash it down with some coffee. You might even Irish up your coffee if you don’t have to drive. I hope all my readers have a wonderful Thanksgiving and a food coma for the ages. Thanks for checking out CriticallyRated.com.

Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Mini Fridge

A mini fridge is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a miniature refrigerator. They are perfect for dorms, apartments, and offices. No man cave is complete without one (unless you have a kegerator, that trumps all). They are essentially glorified and electrified coolers. They aren’t too spacious but you can keep a couple of six packs in them with enough room left over for some sandwich materials and things to eat. I have a mini fridge. My mom is a teacher and she gave me the one from her classroom when I went to college. It’s followed me to the dorms and everywhere I’ve lived since. At one point I stopped using it as a fridge and started using it as storage space. I know that it still works because I accidently plugged it in one time. I woke up a few hours later and discovered a bunch of really cold computer cables and hard drives in my makeshift cabinet. They still worked okay after I thawed them out a little. I didn’t blame the mini fridge for my stupidity and that’s why I still have it to this day. This thing will become an heirloom.

Critically Rated at 12/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Ballpark Food

You’ve never truly experienced a hotdog until you’ve eaten one at a baseball game. A hotdog is ballpark food and it tastes best at the stadium with your favorite team on the field. There’s something about being at the ballpark that makes food taste better. Hotdogs and Polish sausages and corndogs become a delicacy. Cotton candy is sweeter and fluffier. Peanuts are crunchier, sunflower seeds are saltier, and the Cracker Jacks are top notch. Different ballparks have different menus that reflect their region. They have crab fries in Philly, carne asada fries in San Diego, and garlic fries in San Francisco. Ballpark food is going gourmet too. You can find some truly amazing dishes at stadiums around the MLB. Of course no ballpark meal is complete without a ballpark beer to wash it down with. A ballpark beer is a regular beer, only far more refreshing and five times as expensive.

Critically Rated at 15/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Trading Lunch Items

Trading lunch items is a common practice in elementary school cafeterias around the world. The goal is simple: you want to swap your food for something more desirable. It’s best to find someone who has conflicting tastes with you. If you like sweet things and Jimmy likes salty things, then you should give him your Goldfish crackers for a pack of Gushers. He’s happy, you’re happy, and everybody wins. Some kids are really good at trading lunch items. They learn other people’s tastes and preferences and exploit them. They get rid of a slightly bruised apple and get pretzels in return. They can swap those pretzels for a juice box, and then get two bananas in exchange. They know that Billy’s mom is lazy and only buys Lunchables so he would gladly give it away for two bananas. And once you have a Lunchable you control the negotiations.

Critically Rated at 15/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Leftovers

Another Thanksgiving has come and gone, and hopefully your refrigerator is stocked with leftovers. Leftovers are the extra food that you still have at the end of a meal. You put them in Ziploc baggies, Tupperware, a to-go box, or in tin foil and stick it in the fridge. You pop it into the microwave and nuke it whenever you need a quick snack or bite to eat. A lot of college kids rely on leftovers to get from Thanksgiving to Christmas break without starving. Some food is more perishable than others. I wouldn’t recommend taking home fish or other types of seafood. Nachos get all soggy when you try to reheat it. Chinese food and pizza make the best leftovers. You don’t even need to heat up the pizza if you’re feeling lazy. A lot of leftovers stay in the fridge too long. They get moldy and inedible and you have to throw it out. That about sums up what is wrong with Americans: we get more food than we can possibly eat, and then we hoard it and hide it until we have to throw it away. But leftovers are a tradition, and you can’t leave Thanksgiving dinner without a slice of pie.

Critically Rated at 12/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Brunch

Brunch is the miraculous mealtime hybrid that combines breakfast and lunch. It’s a late morning/early afternoon meal. It’s meant to be a social affair; you’re supposed to eat it with family and friends. Nobody goes to brunch alone. That’s depressing and weird. Most brunches have a diverse menu, ranging from breakfast foods like eggs and waffles to lunchtime foods like little sammiches, quiche, and cuts of meat. You might also expect to find rolls, cheese, salads, pasta dishes, and an array of fruits. Cantaloupe is required. It’s not brunch without cantaloupe. You can eat brunch any day of the week, but it’s best on Sundays. There’s no better way to get rid of your hangover than by having a big meal with good people and washing it all down with a few Mimosas and a Bloody Mary. It’s hard to top that. Brunch just might be the most enjoyable meal of the day.

Critically Rated at 16/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Hair in Your Food

People eat food and people shed hairs. At some point in your life, those two occurrences will collide and you will find hair in your food. Everyone has hair, and everyone’s hair falls out. You will have to deal with someone else’s hair in your food at some point. You just don’t want to eat it. It doesn’t matter how hygienic they are, or how clean and conditioned their hair is, you don’t want any of their dead cells in your mouth. Hair in your food is gross. But there’s nothing worse than finding a hair in your food when you’re halfway done with your meal. It makes you sick to your stomach. It makes you wonder if you had a bite of food that contained someone else’s follicles. Just don’t take it out on your server. It’s not his fault. Blame the shedding cook. And hopefully it’s not curly.

Critically Rated at 4/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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