Note: As April has five Thursdays in it, I’m taking off April Fool's Day. Expect your next essay on April 8. Have a lovely week.
Welcome to my end-of-the-month round-up of consumables, including a PANDEMIC CORNER!
TV: Cobra Kai.
This is a very dumb show. At the same time, it’s a show I’ve consumed nearly 3 seasons of in just a few weeks. All this show requires is for you to sit in front of the square god streaming it and some knowledge of The Karate Kid movie. Neither main character has any problems that real, though William Zabka’s character is in a downward arc, no question. That the Ralph Macchio character is so haunted by his karate past is ridiculous: he has a lovely family (okay, his son sort of sucks), a beautiful home with a swimming pool I would kill for, a good income, access to Mr. Miyagi’s old place. All he needs to do is clear out one room and he’s got a nice practice space for his moves. Let it go, already, Daniel. Of course, I never watched any of the sequels to the first movie, so maybe there’s a lot I don’t know. In any case, aside from my family teasing me about my poor taste, watching it was a brainless, untaxing pleasure.
Podcast: Some Place Under Neith.
This podcast just started but its first two episodes were just what I wanted: a mix of humor and horror, with hosts that know how to guide you through both, as they focus on cases of missing women. The first case they cover is of Shelly Miscavige, the wife of Scientology leader David Miscavige. I first heard of Miscavige’s disappearance in an episode of Leah Remini’s series Scientology: The Aftermath. So far, I’m really enjoying it.
Recipe: Sticky Ginger Chicken Wings.
Okay, I know it’s been all chicken so far. But, this recipe is worth it. Crispy, juicy, flavorful and so easy, too. A matter of mixing sauce in a bowl, and roasting chicken in the oven. Your dog could make this recipe, if he wasn’t so distracted by the raw meat. The only unusual ingredient is the chili garlic sauce, which, if you like spicy stuff, is a good thing to have on hand, anyway. (Sambal oelek is the type we love; here’s a primer on why it’s so good.) Since only one person in our family actually likes wings, I made this with boneless, skinless thighs. I also upped the minced garlic and went overboard on the green onion garnish because I love green onions. The rest of the meal was rounded out with smashed potatoes and our favorite Peruvian cilantro sauce (both of which I will cover in the future).
March Peeve: Shut up already about who is getting their vaccines, when, where and how. Appreciate the fact that just three months into the new year, THINGS ARE ACTUALLY HAPPENING. We don’t live under a regime headed by a rich simpleton who tried to “wish” the virus away. So, to sum up: help others get their shots, get your own shot, eat your free donut, move on with your one precious life.
March Self-Soothing Measures: We celebrated an exciting accomplishment of mine—getting appointed for a one-year term to our city’s Library Board—with a divine meal from one of our favorite local restaurants, Chimborazo. I’ve been exploring how to make Ecuadorian and other Andean favorites lately in various library cookbooks, but nothing beats tucking into a fresh warm plate of saltado: fried peppers, French fries and flank steak coated in luscious, tangy sauce, atop a pile of rice and a side of aji criollo.
like what I make?