Archive for the ‘Celebs’ Category

Dude! You’re getting a drink!

Dell

Remember this guy? He was that really annoying slacker/stoner spokesperson for Dell.

Apparently he did a bunch of these commercials, then he got busted for weed in 2003 and then took up off-Broadway acting. And now? Well according to AdFreak via New York Mag…

Ben’s behind the bar at Greenwich Village’s Tortilla Flats, a place known for its raucous bingo night and 2 a.m. happy hour, if my foggy memory serves. The good news: He’s in a better place. “There were times when I made boatloads of money as an actor, but here I can be myself,” he says.

There’s a short interview posted on New York Mag’s Grub Street site. Apparently he gets recognized every day.

Well, if you happen to be in the area and want to run up to the bar and do your best “Dude, you’re getting a Dell!” impression, here’s the address:

767 Washington St., New York, NY 10014
at 12th St.
212-243-1053

Photo from Grub Street (Melissa Hom).

Celebs Cooking

Seems like there’s a new fad on the web, and it’s watching celebs cook.

I’ve posted a couple times on the subject, once with Christopher Walken cooking and another with Robert Rodriguez.

Well here are two more. For you viewing pleasure…

Chef Paul McCartney

Paul

And Chef Ron Jeremy…

Ron J.

Now you’ve seen everything.

What’s In Your Fridge?

Fridge

If you’ve ever seen Cribs on MTV, the highlight of each celebrity house is the part where they open their fridge. It’s always dramatic, and always pretty interesting to see what they have. Turns out they’re regular people who eat food just like we do!

Anyway, apparently fridgewatching is like the new celebrity stalking.

Rachael Ray has a portion of her magazine dedicated to what’s in celebrity fridges. If you’re curious, here’s what David Ortiz keeps in his and here’s what Jimmy Kimmel has in his. Here are a bunch more in case you’re a celeb stalker.

Not into what the celebs keep in their fridge? Want to see what REAL people keep in theirs?

Head over to Fridgewatcher.com and take a peek. You can even submit a picture of your own fridge.

Fridgewatcher.com is a project where people open their fridges to others. Cause every fridge tells a story. We want to know yours. Send us a picture of your refridgerator.

Some are jam packed and some are pretty bare, but all are interesting. Especially the ones from the Netherlands. Check them all out and submit yours. Looks like the site is just starting out so there’s a good chance your fridge will end up being on there.

How Starbucks Saved My Life

Saved by Starbucks

Need a good read? Already finished reading Heat? Well pick this up and read it before Tom Hanks turns it into a movie.

Seriously.

How Starbucks Saved My Life tells the story of how Michael Gates Gill, a successful advertising exec. for the Ford Motor Company at J. Walter Thompson, was canned from his $160,000 per year job and hired by Starbucks. According to Reveries

JWT denies Michael’s version of events, but whatever happened, it led him to where he is today — earning $10.50 an hour at a Starbucks in Bronxville, New York. That unusual career move occurred some ten years after starting a business that ultimately failed, and about a week after being diagnosed with a brain tumor. Michael was sitting in the Starbucks, unemployed and with no health insurance, dressed in an expensive suit and doing his best to look important. Oddly, the manager asked him if he wanted a job. The offer included health insurance, so he took it, and, Michael says, entered a world “where everything, even cleaning grubby tiles, is given a positive spin.” Sounds just like….advertising.

Gill was “surprised by how little revulsion I felt for a job I would have previously thought beneath me.”

He found comfort working “where people could be nicer and the work environment better than I had ever believed possible … What you are trying to do is help other people enjoy something,” he says. That “something,” he explains, is not a “multimillion dollar ad campaign. It’s just trying to serve a good cup of coffee.”

The book will be released on September 20th.

And according to Variety

Universal Pictures has made a six-figure acquisition of “How Starbucks Saved My Life” based on a 102-page proposal and attached Tom Hanks to star and Gus Van Sant to direct.

And according to Defamer

Universal picks up the rights to the forthcoming memoir How Starbucks Saved My Life, about an ad exec who loses his job and becomes a professional macchiato slinger, with the intention of having Tom Hanks don the green apron. Of course, the book’s author was in his 60s during the personal crisis, but fudging the age downward should make the whole story that much more poignant as the humbled, middle-aged Hanks struggles to master the frappuccino blender.

Photo from Flickr.

More Dinner with the Band

Dinner with the Band

I’m going out of town this weekend so I thought I’d download a few podcasts for my trip. As I was browsing through iTunes, I noticed that “Dinner with the Band,” an online show hosted by chef Sam Mason, was available for download in all different kinds of format.

In case you missed my first post about this a while back, the premise is this; Chef Sam Mason invites a band over, cooks with them or uses them as a theme, and then the band plays some songs. It’s done really well and it’s entertaining, probably more so than most cooking shows on TV.

Here’s a cooking show that breaks the mold – the perfect mash-up of indie music and edgy food for total entertainment. Chef Sam Mason has been raising the stakes in the culinary world for the last ten years. Now join him as he invites his favorite touring bands to dinner for an intimate evening of cooking, conversation and live performance. Part rocker, part chef, Mason creates “intellectual food” that stimulates the palate as well as the dialogue. Rock on. (from On Networks)

So head over to the Dinner with the Band site or go browse the podcasts on iTunes.

For more on Sam Mason, including his latest projects, check out his site, sammasonnyc.com.

A Grindhouse Breakfast

Grindhouse

Here’s a great find by the new and improved Epicurious Blog network.

For your viewing pleasure, head over to Something Awful and check out the Grindhouse-inspired breakfast cereals.

These cereals are definitely NOT kid friendly but they’re pretty creative and perfectly fit the theme of the movie.

Tofu’s Perfect Match

Tofu Fest

This is probably one of those “only in LA” festivals but it’s a yearly thing here on the west coast.

I’ve seen posters all over town and it’s finally embedded in my head. Their posters and the whole Tofu Fest campaign is pretty clever. Head over to tofufest.org to help find tofu’s perfect match.

As for the festival itself, here’s what you need to know.

The 12th Annual Los Angeles Tofu Festival will take place on August 18, 12pm – 8 pm and August 19, 12 pm – 6 pm. General admission is $5, kids and seniors are free, and there’s a $2 off coupon here. Proceeds go to charity.

Festival Grounds are located at 237 S. San Pedro Street, Los Angeles, CA 90013 on San Pedro and 2nd.

Attractions include:

Beer, Wine & Sake Garden: A selection of sake and beer is served in a sectioned off portion of Tofu Fest, supplementing Little Tokyo’s own beer gardens and Nisei Week’s attractions. The sale of alcohol was under debate by the festival’s committee in 1994 in regards to making the festival more family friendly.

Celebrity Chefs: Famous chefs exhibit their craft on a cooking platform, with fair goers getting the chance to taste dishes from the demonstrations. Masaharu Morimoto of Iron Chef is a recurring guest, appearing in last year’s 2006 festival.

Children’s Pavilion: Children were previously given an additional area to enjoy the festival, as parts of the festival, like the alcohol garden, were unsuitable. However, as of 2006, Children’s Pavilion is no longer a featured event.

Entertainment Stage: Bands and artists appear live at the festival, ranging from instrumental groups, such as taiko and orchestra, to hip hop groups like Blackalicious.

Tofu Eating Contest: The tofu eating contest is a race to eat a 14-ounce block of tofu in the shortest amount of time. Several elimination rounds are held before the final battle and winner’s ceremony, where a prize is given to the winner on the entertainment stage.

And if you’re interested in the Tofu Eating Contest it will be held on Saturday, August 18th at 4pm. Here are the rules:

  • Contestants will be required to eat a 14 ounce block of House Foods Medium Firm Tofu.
  • Festival Judges will be judging the Tofu Eating contest. Contestants agree to abide by the Festival Judges’ decision. Festival Judges’ decisions are final.
  • Contestants will not be able to use their hands during the contest to eat the tofu.
  • There will be 10 contestants competing in each round with a total of 5 preliminary rounds. The first 2 contestants to eat the entire block of tofu will advance to the Final Round.
  • The first contestant to eat the entire block of tofu in the Final Round will win the Grand Prize
  • The second and third place winners of the Final Round will receive also receive prizes
  • In order for a contestant to completely finish the block of tofu, he/she must have swallowed the last mouth full of tofu as decided by the Festival Judges.
  • Contestants must be at least 18 years old.
  • Contest Rules are subject to change without notice.

Info seen here was collect from the Tofu Festival site as well as Wikipedia.

The Paul Giamatti of the Culinary World

SPAM

A recent article on NPR had me wondering what Spam really is.

Spam is the Paul Giamatti or John C. Reilly of the culinary world, an everyman food that lacks the charisma or looks of a leading ingredient, but consistently makes all other ingredients taste better. (from NPR)

Spam luncheon meat is a canned precooked meat product made by the Hormel Foods Corporation. The labeled ingredients in the Classic variety of Spam are: chopped pork shoulder meat with ham meat added, salt, water, sugar, and sodium nitrite.

Varieties include: Spam Black Pepper, Spam Less Sodium, Spam Garlic, Spam and Cheese, Spam with Bacon (Hormel bacon), Spam Spread, Spam Fritters, Spam Lite (containing pork and chicken), Spam Golden Honey Grail (named after “Spamalot” and Monty Python’s Holy Grain, Spam Hot and Spicy (with Tabasco sauce), Spam Hickory Smoked, and Spam Oven Roasted Turkey – the latter is a halal food, meaning that it is permissible under Islamic law, and is especially popular in Muslim markets.

Introduced on July 5, 1937, the name “Spam” was chosen in the 1930s when the product, whose original name was far less memorable (Hormel Spiced Ham), began to lose market share. The name was chosen from multiple entries in a naming contest. A Hormel official once stated that the original meaning of the name Spam was “Shoulder of Pork and hAM“. According to writer Marguerite Patten in Spam – The Cookbook, the name was suggested by Kenneth Daigneau, an actor and the brother of a Hormel vice president. At one time, the official explanation may have been that the name was a syllabic abbreviation of “SPiced hAM”, but on their official website, Hormel denies this and states that “Spam is just that. Spam.” The fact that the originator was given a $100 prize for coming up with the name, however, still appears on the site’s Spam FAQs.

According to Hormel’s trademark guidelines, Spam should be spelled with all capital letters and treated as an adjective, as in the phrase “SPAM luncheon meat”. As with many other trademarks, such as Xerox or Kleenex, people often refer to similar meat products as “spam”. Regardless, in practice, “Spam” is generally spelled and used as a proper noun. (from Wikipedia)

But what can you make with SPAM that actually tastes edible, perhaps, even good? Here are a couple that sound good, both from NPR.

Photo from Flickr.

—————————————————–

SPAM MUSUBI

More Spam is consumed in Hawaii than any other state in the U.S. By far, Hawaiians’ favorite dish is Musubi, a ready-to-eat Spam snack that resembles a large piece of nigiri sushi. In Hawaii, you can buy Musubi in nearly any convenience store or grocery store for between $1 and $2. This is adapted from a recipe on the Hormel Foods Web site. (Makes 8 servings)

Ingredients

  • 1 12-ounce can Spam Classic
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 3 cups cooked white sushi rice (found in the Asian section of supermarket)
  • 1 package hoshi nori (Japanese dried seaweed, available at Asian markets)

Directions

  1. Slice Spam lengthwise into 8 equal pieces.
  2. In a shallow dish, combine garlic, ginger, brown sugar and soy sauce. Place Spam slices in the mixture and let sit for 30 minutes. Remove and pat dry.
  3. In a medium-sized skillet, fry the marinated Spam slices over medium heat, 2 minutes on each side or until lightly browned.
  4. Moisten hands and mold rice into 8 thick blocks with the same outside dimensions as Spam slices. (You can get a perfect block shape by using a special plastic Musubi mold found online or in specialty stores in Hawaii.)
  5. Cut nori into 8-1/2 inch strips. Place Spam slices on rice blocks and wrap individual nori strips around each middle.
  6. Moisten one end of nori slightly to fasten together. The remaining marinade may be used as a dip.

—————————————————–
Or for the really gourmet SPAM enthusiast…

Lobster Thermidor Aux Crevettes with Mornay Sauce, Truffle Pate, Brandy, Fried Egg and Spam

Don’t expect to earn your third Michelin star with this dish. But any diners who are also die-hard Monty Python fans will be delighted. (Makes 4 servings)

Ingredients 

  • 4 lobster tails
  • 16 jumbo shrimp, shelled and deveined
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 small white onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon brandy
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream, scalded
  • 1/4 cup grated Gruyere cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 2 tablespoons bread crumbs
  • 1 12-ounce can Spam Classic
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 can truffle pate (found in gourmet food stores)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable or peanut oil

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to broil.
  2. Place lobster tails into large pot of boiling water. After 3 to 4 minutes, add shrimp. Cook another 3 to 4 minutes until lobster and shrimp are done.
  3. Remove from pot. Drain and rinse under cold water. Using kitchen shears or carefully with a knife, remove but save lobster shells. Cut lobster meat and shrimp coarsely into 1/2-inch pieces.
  4. Heat 4 tablespoons of butter in skillet over medium heat. Add onions and saute about 4 minutes, until translucent. Add flour and stir, cooking for another 1 to 2 minutes.
  5. Whisk in brandy, then hot cream.
  6. Remove from heat and add Gruyere and half the Parmesan cheese, stirring frequently. Add lobster, shrimp, paprika, salt and pepper.
  7. Arrange lobster shells in a casserole dish. Pour lobster shrimp mixture over shells and sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese and bread crumbs. Broil on high until golden, 3 to 5 minutes.
  8. While waiting for the dish to broil, slice Spam into 8 pieces. Fry eggs over medium heat, then remove. Fry Spam slices until light brown.
  9. To serve, place each lobster shell on a plate. Top with one or two slices of Spam and then a fried egg. Serve truffle pate on the side.

Cook with Christopher Walken

A lot of food blogs are linking to this 3 minute video of Christopher Walken cooking a turkey. Why? Because it’s Christopher Walken cooking a turkey.

He makes it look like a really simple process.

I embedded the video from YouTube but I’m not sure how long that’ll last. The actual clip is from a site called I’m Cooked (which I had never heard of before). I’m Cooked is a web community for video recipe sharing and their slogan is “Cook it. Film it. Share it.” Seems like a great idea. Here’s some more info.

Started by Joseph Leibovic in May of 2007, imcooked.com came out of a passion for cooking and desire to find new recipes. He found that although entertaining, a lot of the recipes found on cable television were simply way too “gourmet.” So after a little research online, Joseph was fascinated that tens of thousands of “homemade” recipes were up on video sharing sites. Although he had visited these sites on a daily basis he never thought to search for recipes.

After a couple quick searches – a pattern started to appear. The content was there, but because of the sheer volume of videos on these video sharing sites finding recipes became too much of a chore. A simple search under pizza led to search results that contained pizza recipes – but they had to be sorted out from videos such as someone eating a whole pizza in 2 minutes, someone throwing pizzas off a roof, a girl answering the door naked for a pizza delivery guy – so on and so forth. It seemed obvious, User generated content is what people want to watch and those searching for food recipes shouldn’t have to dig for them. The idea for imcooked.com was born. A community in which users can generate only food related content.

Now members can share their recipes with the world absolutely free. You can easily become a popular chef if you keep at it and upload new recipes all the time. The possibilities are endless and what you do with it is totally up to you. Imcooked.com does not in anyway supply the content for our site.

If that wasn’t entertaining enough, check out this clip of some guy prank calling a restaurant and pretending he’s Christopher Walken.

Who needs the Kwik-E-Mart?

Kwik

I do…

And the time is here. Simpsons’ themed 7-11’s are starting to pop up across the country. Reader Shanto reported seeing one in Venice, CA but there is another one in CA, and about 12 total across the country.

Always wondered where Springfield really is? Does anyone really know? We’ll the folks at 7-Eleven do – in fact they’ve been working very closely with Apu Nahasapeemapetilon.

  • Burbank, CA
  • Chicago, IL
  • Dallas, TX
  • Denver, CO
  • Lake Buena Vista, FL/Orlando, FL
  • Las Vegas, NV/Henderson, NV
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • New York City, NY
  • San Francisco, CA/Mountain View, CA
  • Seattle, WA
  • Vancouver, BC/Coquitlam, BC
  • Washington, DC/Bladensburg, MD

These Kwik-E-Marts will offer Squishee’s, Krusty O’s, Buzz Cola, Pink Donuts, Radioactive Man Comic #711, and other collectors items.

And to find the exact location of the Kwik-E-Mart nearest to you, click here.

Photo from Flickr.

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