Posted in Reviews, Sunshine and Happiness

Best Food Pairings: Wine, Cheese, Crackers, and More

pairings
It gets even better than this.

There are certain food and drink combinations that have universal appeal.  These pairs of flavors are my personal top-ten taste-bud tempters:

Milk and six Oreos dunked for twelve seconds (If you use skim milk, go for the Double Stuf.)

IC Light Beer (I love Pittsburgh) and Thursday night fire hall wings (garlic and butter)

Original salt-rimmed lime margaritas and hard-shell beef-stuffed tacos.

Coca Cola and meat lovers’ pizza (heavy on the sausage, bacon, ham, bacon, pepperoni, and bacon)

Thick chocolate milkshakes and cheeseburgers loaded with paradise

Swiss Miss Hot Cocoa and a dozen of Jet-Puffed Mini-Marshmallows

Chilled chardonnay and puffy pillows of seared sea scallops

A&W Root Beer and two scoops of French vanilla ice cream

Starbucks coffee and donuts so thickly glazed they hurt my teeth

BLUE RIBBON PAIRING – Cabernet Sauvignon and Extra Cheddar Flavor Blasted Goldfish Crackers

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Get ready for a Flavor Blast!

That’s right, my number one pick is this wine and food pairing. The cracker in itself is a combo of baked Pepperidge Farm goodness sprinkled with the precise amount of cheddar. Cabernet Sauvignon is a full-bodied dry red that explodes with complex quality and smoothness.  There is no better half, since, in a partnership, each brings out the best in the other.

Over a decade ago, I discovered how good this was while I was packing my kids’ school lunches.  That night, while enjoying a glass of red wine, I filled their Tupperware boxes with Goldfish.  I was then on a heart healthy diet that encouraged a daily glass of red wine, which I was still acquiring a taste for.  I munched on a few crackers while sipping cab and discovered a divine unification of tastes.  I was surprised how much the cheddar in this adorable, kid-friendly snack evoked the strong tannins and oaks in my wide-mouthed glass.  Conversely, the velvety red liquid melted the cracker crunch into a blend of salty and bitter-berry bliss.

It was then that I poured a fish bowl serving size of 51 crackers containing 140 calories and another glass of cab at 120 calories. I tipped my glass and feasted on cheese and crackers all mixed into one smiley snack. As I swallowed and savored, I fancied myself at a classy party and raised my pinkie.   Holy mackerel! Nearly 300 calories later, I became the hooked fish.

I continued my daily dose of wine, and my purple-stained mouth came to expect a school of Goldfish to swim in it.  The more I got used to the wine, the more I wanted the crackers.  After eating 51 fish, how could I have room for more?  Well, I’m honest, so I confess that there have been times when I gorged on 204 crackers and an entire bottle of wine! During those moments, my pinkie drooped while I sucked the cheese off my other fingers. Classy.

Drinking the crumbs from the bowl, I was drowning my diet.   My flesh was too weak to give up my wine and cheddar flavor blast though, so to avoid becoming whale size, I became a runner.  Every four miles run shed a glass of wine and two servings of Goldfish calories that would have stuck to my gills.  Will run for wine! 

I tried to justify my intoxicating gluttony with religion.  What would Jesus do?  He fed the masses with fish and turned water into wine.  I realized I was misconstruing the Bible to work for me. Out of guilt I tried giving up the Goldfish for Lent, but when everyone would “sacrifice” by eating fish on Fridays, I was overcome with temptation.

Today, 10 years later, I continue to be tantalized, mesmerized, and hypnotized by this taste-bud dancing duet. I’m older and wiser and know if I stick with just one 6 oz glass I can avoid my crazy craving for crackers.  It’s a struggle to repress my palette’s desire, but I have learned to moderate.  Of course, there are times when I dive in and have a buzzing cheddar blast doing so.

What’s your favorite food pairing?

 

Posted in Father Time, Relationships, Sunshine and Happiness

Happy 20th Wedding Anniversary to Us – The Romantic Comedy of When Harry met Donna

Harry and I met during our junior year of college at IUP in the fall of 1993.  He, a marketing major, and I, an English education major, ended up in the same Spanish II class.

IUP Continue reading “Happy 20th Wedding Anniversary to Us – The Romantic Comedy of When Harry met Donna”

Posted in Mother Nature, Shadows and Black Clouds, Sunshine and Happiness

Howling at the Full Moon

Well, ladies, I survived another full moon and so did you!  I barely howled this month, yet I’ve been quite growly lately.  This Part-Time Sunshine blogger has been swinging through moods like Tarzan in the jungle. It’s distressing because I cannot pinpoint any true triggers.  I mean life is good, so why am I such a JUDY MOODY?  I’d like to attribute these irritable, sad, irrational spells on something tangible, realistic, and beyond my control.  It’s not me; it’s the moon!

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Blame it on the Moon

Continue reading “Howling at the Full Moon”

Posted in Holidays, Inspiration, Spirtuality, Sunshine and Happiness

Lost and Found – Memorial Day Reunion

In remembrance, give thanks.  Those are the profound words that stir my heart and soul every Memorial Day.  Over the 2013 Memorial Day Weekend, my family experienced a mini-miracle.  For years I hoped to recover something we lost in 2006.  Here is the tale of lost crosses, faithful reunions, and thankful memories that are eternal.   Continue reading “Lost and Found – Memorial Day Reunion”

Posted in Mother Nature, Sunshine and Happiness

Hello, Springtime Greens. Goodbye, Winter Blues.

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Rebirth! Resurrection! Revival! What a wonder spring is. After slipping, sloshing, and slugging through another Northwestern Pennsylvania winter, I am thankful that we woke to the calendar start of a new season. So long, Winter.  Ba-Bye!!! Continue reading “Hello, Springtime Greens. Goodbye, Winter Blues.”

Posted in Holidays, Sunshine and Happiness

Beat the Valentine’s Day Blues

I lost all my oxygen…

Cleaning out the junk drawer, I found this magical musical machine. I hope you like my lil’ song and can laugh at this absurd “treat” now and again when you get to the end of this post.  Mary had a Little Lamb is better replayed. Continue reading “Beat the Valentine’s Day Blues”

Posted in Sunshine and Happiness, Writing

My Symbolic Story of being a Part-Time Sunshine

img_9996The actual and metaphoric sky which umbrellas all earthlings sprinkles and showers us with various shines and shadows. It’s a wacky, windy, wildly unpredictable sky, and so is my job as a sunshine.

I know some of you have been wondering what this position entails.  Allow me to explain. Who knows, you might be cut out for this line of work too?   Continue reading “My Symbolic Story of being a Part-Time Sunshine”