I’m ashamed to admit that food can affect me so much. I’m ashamed to admit that I probably live to eat, rather than eat to live. I’m ashamed to say that when it comes to food…I can get teeny weeny bit…emotional.
This fixation on food is one thing which I can’t seem to shake off. I’ve been doing some thinking, wondering if food has always affected me so much, even before my eating disorder. And the answer is yes.
I remember one night crying my eyes out when my mother failed to buy me roti prata as she promised. I was only appeased when my dad fed me some sticky Korean rice cakes, on which I lost my first baby tooth.
I remember throwing a huge tantrum when my mother refused to take me to KFC. I screamed that she was an evil child-abuser for feeding me nothing but disgusting rice and Korean food (God, I was such a brat!).
I remember getting into clawing, hissing, kicking catfights with my best friend because I didn’t want to share my bag of Asian crackers. The bag ended up getting torn, its contents spewing all across the floor. We both broke each other’s glasses, and then made up while picking the crackers off the floor together (and eating them).
Yes, I’m a glutton. Out of the 7 Deadly Sins, my biggest sin probably has and always been gluttony. And I was reminded of my gluttony again one afternoon when Mimi and I visited Lemonade again for a final review.
Remember Lemonade? The new posh lunch cafe that opened in our new posh Campus Center? Yeah, I wasn’t done with it.
Lemonade has such an extensive menu that it would take several trips before you get a clear grip of what their food is about. At least, that’s what Mimi and I told our editor so that we could make a second trip and have it comped by the Daily Trojan.
Lemonade, of course, ought to be famous for its titular lemonades. But I detest lemonades and Mimi only wanted their sugar-free kind, which was not yet available. Thankfully her roommate tried one, and apparently it’s so sweet it’ll spazz you out. So unless you want a sugar shock, stick to the savories.
Actually, I lie. Their desserts are pretty good, too.
Lemonade really knows how to market their products. They showcase all their pretty desserts out near the registers just beyond your grasp, so that it’s almost impossible not to grab a cookie or cupcake at the last minute.
Come on. How can you say no to these?
You can just hear them whispering seductively into your ear, beckoning you with sweet promises of a damn sexy party in your mouth.
Ooh, baby, you know you want me…
Come, honey, let this hot mama show you proper good time…
Please tell me I’m not crazy. Please tell me you hear them too.
Anyway. These sultry voices might be promising me wonders in my head, but I faced several disappointments that day at Lemonade. First of all, they were out of this:
Quiches, fat and dense like a cheesecake. I took this picture the first time I was here, and was really looking forward to trying this on the second trip, but it was all gone.
I swallowed my disappointment, but was hit by a second fail: they were out of banana mascarpone cake. Gah!
Third disappointment: I asked for a cup of ice, which Lemonade gave me just a week ago on my first visit. But this time, it was a different cashier, and she stared a full 50 seconds down at me before haughtily snapping, “We don’t do that. We don’t just give out ice.”
To which I should have answered, “But obviously you like giving out attitude, bitch!” but instead mumbled an apology and backed out (why the heck was I apologizing?).
Fourth disappointment: The lentil soup.
Just. Look. At. It.
Does that look like a lentil soup to you? More like the residue of ditch water left behind by painters. It had no substance. No texture. Just colored, barely flavored liquid.
Fifth disappointment, and the final straw was the Ham & Manchego grilled sandwich I ordered:
Take a careful look at it:
Do you see what’s wrong with this? Yes. Where’s the ham? The manchego? What is an effing chicken doing in my ham sandwich?!!
Yes, those might have been the exact words I raged out that afternoon. Actually, I don’t exactly remember because I was about 8 shades of purple and on the verge of ripping my unwanted chicken sandwich into shreds, but I know some expletives were involved. How dare they screw up my order? How dare they give me a damn chicken sandwich?!!
I think I might have terrified Mimi, who froze up and stared at me with concern.
“It’s okay. Why don’t you ask them to switch it for you?” she asked soothingly.
“Screw it,” I spat. “Whatever. Whatever whatever.”
Pause for a few minutes, with me scowling at my cowering sandwich. Mimi tried again. “You sure?” she said. “You might as well go ask, if you’re gonna be so unhappy about it. I don’t want you being pissed off all afternoon.”
And that’s when I suddenly felt ashamed. What was I doing, throwing a hissy fit over a stupid sandwich? I am almost 23 years old, for god’s sake, and I was acting like a 4 year old who wasn’t allowed to eat ice-cream before dinner.
So I got up and told the Lemonade sandwich lady as politely as I could that she made a mistake with my order. Within minutes I was back with my new Ham & Manchego sandwich, happy as a clam:
I feel ridiculous for admitting this, but my mood just got so much better when I returned with the right sandwich. And it jumped sky-high when I bit into my delicious sandwich:
Ham, Manchego cheese, and Quince jelly on Rosemary bread. It was hot, it was salty, it was sweet from the sticky quince spread, and it was cheesy. My grin was back. Mimi grinned back, glad to see the bitchy Sophia gone.
Our second entree order was even better:
Red Miso Beef Short Rib braise.
You heard me. Red miso. Beef short ribs. Braised, for hours and hours until the meat is just melt-in-your-mouth tender, and saturated with its own juices and the thickest, most concentrated flavorful sauce.
The flesh just pulls apart with a poke of the fork. “We have to recreate this,” I gasped. I don’t know how, but goddamn it, I’ll figure out how.
The lunch ended on a sweet note with two kinds of bars. Mimi chose the first one:
Peanut Butter Milk Chocolate Crunch: a brown-sugar Rice Krispy crust, peanut butter fudge filling, and milk chocolate ganache on top.
I only took a few nibbles out of this one, and then took it home to freeze. When served cold, it was actually really yummy, despite the fact that I dislike chocolate and peanut butter in my desserts.
I think I liked the taste of this one better, though I preferred the texture of the first bar when it was frozen.
So. That’s my little story of how a chicken sandwich made me lose my temper. Mimi won’t let me forget it; she still jokes about it almost a week later.
But this incident sure made me think: why do I get so affected by something I poop out within 12 hours? Anybody share a similar experience as me?
Question of the Day: I understand that not everyone is a glutton like me. So…do share. What is your deadly sin?
P.S. Check out the review on Lemonade that Mimi and I co-wrote together! I think we make a dynamic writing team. The editor liked it so much she wants us to do more joined reviews! Wheee~
P.P.S. A giveaway coming soon. Stay tuned!