AlcoHOLidays | Peach Cobbler Day | Early Summer Peach

On the south side of Tallahassee there’s a butcher shop cum lunch counter that features different entrees each day of the week. It is a haven to southern comfort foods and on Fridays we used to go there to pickup meatloaf and mashed potatoes with cornbread and okra (or greens) for lunch. Used to because it was very rich and easily enough for two meals if you could restrain yourself. We weren’t very good at restraint. You had to go early–if you waited too much past noon to swing by they might be out of meatloaf for the day and
Read More

AlcoHOLidays | Caramel Popcorn Day | Caramel Jack

In our house we’re quite divided between sweet and savory popcorn–Todd prefers his strictly savory and while I do enjoy some salt or Parmesan cheese on mine on occasion, I really adore the sweeter side of popcorn, even better if it’s got nuts and chocolate, too! Way to make a healthy snack decided less so, right? But Michael Pollan says you can eat as much junk food as you want, as long as you make it yourself, right? So I suppose if you’re willing to put in the work, then you deserve the indulgence. While I remember making batches of it
Read More

AlcoHOLidays | Easter | Trio of the Southern Cross

The “shadowy” origins of many Christian holidays are major bones of contention among the devout and while I’m used to the usual arguments surfacing around Christmas I admit I’m a bit surprised at the furor rampant (at least among my Facebook friends) over Easter‘s influences. Nutshell: the bunny, chicks, and eggs that don’t really seem like obvious symbols of the Christian resurrection celebration? That’s because they’re actually fertility symbols and yet another example of the Church appropriating a holiday from the people they were trying to sway into their fold. Over time the old pagan symbols may have been assigned new meanings (the
Read More

AlcoHOLidays | Maple Syrup Saturday | Maple Break

Consider this my apology to maple syrup. Why would I need to apologize to maple syrup? Well, the truth of the matter is that I’ve never really been all that fond of it. So when I was going over my list of holidays this coming week–and there were plenty to choose from*–it would have been perfectly in character for  me to skip over Maple Syrup Saturday (March 23,2013) and move onto something more to my personal taste. And yet choose it I did, because I’ve come to respect maple syrup, even if it’s still not my favorite flavor. You see, back in
Read More

AlcoHOLidays | St Patrick’s Day | Sweet Irish Coffee

On St Patrick’s Day, everybody has a touch of the Irish in them! Granted, the day has devolved (in many areas, including my own college-anchored town) into an excuse to drink watered-down, green-tinted beer for a ridiculously long time. It’ll be interesting to see if that is at all curbed by March 17 falling on a Sunday this year, but I have my doubts. As most folks know, St Patrick is credited with bringing Christianity to the pagan Irish. Though we think of green as the natural color for St Patrick’s Day, originally the color most associated with him was
Read More

AlcoHOLidays | Girl Scout Cookie Week | Coconut Dream

Oh, yes, it’s that time again. If you haven’t been accosted coming out of your local supermarket I’m sure someone on your friend’s list has posted, shared, or otherwise reminded you that, indeed, it is Cookie Time once again. According to my sources, the official Girl Scout Cookie Week is March 10-16, 2013. What started out as a single-troop bake sale (I’m sorry, service project) of sugar cookies, in 1917, has continued unabated (except during WWII when they had to sell calendars, instead, due to the scarcity of ingredients) into the high point of the cookie-loving population. Of course, not everyone always loves
Read More

AlcoHOLidays | Banana Cream Pie Day | Banana Cream-Tini

You gotta love it when the holidays lend themselves so easily to a cocktail, right? March 2 is Banana Cream Pie Day and I’m having trouble coming up with any objections to such a day existing. Banana pies and banana cream custards go back to the late-1800s, but the first written record specifically for the banana cream pie is found in 1906, courtesy of The Blue Ribbon Cook Book. Every pie maven surely has their own version of the pie these days, a favorite for pot lucks and spring holidays, and there are plenty of cocktail versions around, too. Of course, I
Read More

AlcoHOLidays | National Margarita Day | The Choco-Rita

The history of the margarita is hotly debated. Sometime in the 1930s or 40s someone concocted it, but whether it was a Texas socialite or one of the two south-of-the-border bartenders that claim the honor, it remains a wonderful drink for warm days. The basic margarita consists of tequila–usually silver, though I prefer gold, lime juice, and orange liqueur. Do not–I repeat, do not–let me catch you using sour mix or triple sec in a margarita; that’s just rude. If you want a sweeter margarita to pair with the salted rim, add a bit of sugar syrup to your shaker but leave the
Read More

AlcoHOLidays | National Battery Day | High Voltage

Got your history caps on? Today’s cocktail comes with a real charge! Unlike the seemingly arbitrary assignment of some holidays (yes, PB&J Day, I’m looking at you), National Battery Day makes perfect sense as it falls on February 18th, the birthday of Alessandro Volta, the inventor of the battery. Volta (from whom we get the word volt–the measure of electrical potential) was a physicist born in Como Italy, who discovered the gas methane in 1778 as well as created what he called a voltaic pile in 1800–an electrochemical cell or, in other words, a battery. With some acidic or brined cloth between them, the
Read More

AlcoHOLidays | Valentine’s Day | Loving Cup

Ah, yes, Valentine’s Day… Thought by many to be a wonderful day of expressing our love for others in various public and private ways. Thought by others to be a trumped-up excuse by the candy and card manufacturers to bilk out a little more money between the Christmas holidays and Easter. I’ll never forget the time my economics professor held up the start of class because he had to go on a tirade about how silly it was that the depth of his love for his girlfriend was decided by what he did or did not do on a single day of
Read More