Miscellanea: The Future is Now

20170505_220642Tuna was the last meat I gave up when I decided to become a vegetarian ten years ago.  Back in my day, all we vegetarians had were actual vegetables, soy milk, and the occasional Boca Burger.  Now, they sell vegan tuna salad in grocery stores.  I hope all you young people appreciate having access to modern conveniences like vegan tuna salad, NoSalt, and toilet paper.

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Get the hell off my lawn.

 

Miscellanea: I <3 GMOs

(But only plants)

Now, THIS is a strawberry.  Sprinkle on a little non-calorie sugar made in a laboratory on that freakishly large berry and we have a deal!

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Is this real life?

I can’t wait until they grow them the size of my head.

That being said, genetically modifying animals to optimize them for eating…not cool. Google “Deep Pectoral Myopathy” sometime.

Eat the World: Peru

“Visit Machu Picchu” is usually an entry on any traveler’s bucket list. It’s a once in a lifetime experience so, naturally, I’ve been twice.  I don’t know what’s so endearing about Peru, but it stands out from most of the places in which I’ve spent any significant amount of time.  Maybe I was intoxicated by the dreamlike cloud forests and the isolatedness that makes you feel like you’re in your own world.  I miss the heady feeling of being at a high altitude, breathless in the thin air (at the time I smoked like a chimney).  Don’t really know, but there’s food there and that means BLOG POST!?!11  Because, friends, boiling down a genuine (but long since lost) experience into a goofy post about eating guinea pigs is how I cope with the emptiness inside.

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Obligatory Shot of Machu Picchu

Honestly, the food in Peru, while rated “Not Bad” on my scale of “Yum” to “Yuck,” is largely meat-based.  If you’re a vegetarian, you’re probably not going to appreciate seeing the severed cow heads at the meat market.  Besides the standard fare, there’s also a few unique items on the menu, including llama and cui (domesticated guinea pig).  In Cuzco, there’s this great painting of the Last Supper by Marcos Zapata in the Cathedral depicting Jesus and his crew eating cui and drinking chicha.

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Source: Wikipedia

Cui are reserved for special occasions. I do have video footage of cui being prepared, but I’ll just describe it in words.  The cooks placed the slaughtered guinea pig in a pot of boiling water, removed the fur, burnt off the remaining hair over an open flame (scraping it with a knife), gutted it, cut off the tail, and roasted that sucker on up.  So, there’s your tutorial in case there’s a famine and you ever need to cook up the classroom pet.

I just realized it’s been nearly ten years since my first trip to Peru.  Don’t I feel old.

Heavy Meals: Falafel Wraps

750 calories

Two Trader Joe’s Habanero Lime Tortillas, 4 tbsp of hummus, 150g of falafel, and mixed veggies.  Surprisingly fattening at around 750 calories for two wraps (plus a side salad), but also tasty.

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Meanwhile, like my pant size, the ProFit’s Contender count continues to grow.  Current count is 2 frames, 5 barrels.  Do you like launching projectiles out of metal tubes?  Then why not do so while eating hummus out of a tortilla tube?

Heavy Meals: Vegan “Beef” and Broccoli Stir Fry

600 calories

20170303_151729.jpgServes two. Preparation time about thirty minutes.

Approximately 595 calories per serving.

Materials

  • Cutting Board, Knife, Wok, Spatula, Stove
  • 1 Bunch Broccoli (~205 calories – whatever you cut off.)
  • Vegan Beef
    + 1 Package Nature’s Soy Vegetarian Beef: 240 calories.
  • Tofu
    + 1 Package Nature’s Soy Fried Tofu: 600 calories.
  • Teriyaki Sauce
    + La Choy Teriyaki Sauce: 10 calories per tbsp.
  • 1 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
    + Canola Oil: 120 calories per tbsp.
  • Diced Ginger Root (2 calories per tsp.)
  • 2 Thai Chili Peppers
  • Sauce
    + Chili Garlic Sauce or Siracha.

Preparation

Step 1. Clean and cut the broccoli florets into bite-sized pieces. Toss the crappy stem part into the garbage where it belongs.

Step 2. Nature’s Soy vegan beef comes in a block, so you’ll need to separate the vegan beef chunks. The quickest way to do this is to place the block on a cutting board and then strike it with your hand. Rub your hand back and forth over it vigorously. Otherwise, you’re going to be picking at the “beef” flakes for ages.

Step 3. Slice the tofu into cubes.

Step 4. Pour canola oil and some teriyaki sauce into a cast iron skillet. Add the ginger, peppers, broccoli, beef and tofu. Cook at medium heat, using the spatula to turn occasionally. If you can’t fit everything into the wok, cook the veggies and fake meat separately.

Step 5. Remove the food from the pan when the broccoli is tender.

Step 6. Serve with Sriracha and/or salt substitute.

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Miscellanea: Cheese Macronutrient Profiles

“No one has as many friends as the the man with many cheeses.”

fromageAs a software engineering grad student, I get a lot of homework assignments that involve building webpages.

This assignment was to build a data viz. I spent hours making it, so someone besides the TA better look at this thing. Who knows, you might learn something about cheese. I used the C3.js library for the charts.

Cheese Me!

* No, gorgombert is not an actual cheese (though the nutritional information presented is based on mozzarella). Play Divinity: Original Sin sometime–it’s great.