I apologize. I missed last weekend’s ED post.
I have not been very active online lately. I just have a lot on my mind and I haven’t really had the energy to write a lucid post, especially a sensitive and emotional one like my Weekend ED series.
So this post will be a bit of a rushed one. But I have to write this post because guess who is back?!!
Mimi! My BFF food buddy! I haven’t seen her for about 5 months since she went abroad to study at London, but I feel like it’s 5 years, not months. I’ve been pestering her to go to church with me, and this Sunday, I had my chance.
But we went hiking at Griffith Park first:
I’ve never been here. I’ve been wanting to hike up this little hill for so long, and now that I finally have a car and a hiking buddy, I leapt at the chance to visit it, and also “trick” Mimi into going to church with me afterwards.
I love hiking but not the kinds where you have to climb with your hands and knees. I also don’t like hikes that are like 13 miles long. Who wants to wander about in nature for that long? Give me my asphalt and 7-Elevens.
That’s why Griffith Park is perfect. It’s just like 3 miles, it’s not too dreadfully steep but a good mix of even and slightly huffy slopes.
Having a restroom on the way is always a good thing too. I’ve got a bladder the size of a penny. And of course Mimi and I fueled up on too much coffee beforehand (I only got 3 hours of sleep).
You get such an amazing view up on top. You see the whole of Los Angeles and also the famous Hollywood sign.
The only complaints I have is the smell of horse manure (though I actually kind of find that stink pleasant) and the lack of shade.
And of course, it was super awesome to catch up with Mimi again!! Missed the girl! We actually went to a really adorable tea house on Saturday with Daina, but more on that on another post.
After our hike, we stopped by Smart & Final since we had an hour to spare before church service started. Perfect, because I’m part of this group called Social Fabric #SFSmarties, and I was asked to shop at Smart & Final this week to feature a recipe using their store’s chunk cheese.
Dude, you don’t have to ask me to shop at Smart & Final. I love grocery shopping and Smart & Final is just one of my favorite stores.
How can you not like shopping at a place with great prices and selections? Smart & Final is where I go for things I like to buy in bigger quantities, just not as big as size as the bulk Costco offers.
But I discovered that I’ve been cheated. Apparently not all Smart & Final stores are the same. The one I’ve been frequenting before isn’t as great as the other ones I visit now that I have a car.
For example, the store at Hollywood has a much better cheese section. It’s got gouda and edam and manchego cheese and all that jazz. And also a whole range of Laughing Cow cheeses:
Mimi was most excited by their collection of sugar-free Torani Syrup, which she will use on her protein shakes and what-not:
I’m not a smoothie fan like Mimi is, but the choices here was pretty damn fantastic. Mimi bought 3 big-ass bottles.
But my primary purpose for that trip was my cheese.
Cheese is probably my favorite section at a grocery store. I judge a grocery store’s quality by its cheese selections. Only Kraft singles and imitation mozzarella? Ew. Daiya cheese and gluten-free rice cheese? Eek!
Smart & Final has a fair amount of cheese varieties, ranging from imitation cheese to gourmet fancy ones. But again, every store seems to be different. I’m sticking to the stores at Hollywood.
By the way, my brain is kind of frazzled these days. I’m lacking the patience to cook or even imagine something creative and elaborate. I must be getting old and losing brain cells. No, it’s true. You’ll see soon enough.
Since I’ve been craving cornbread, I decided to make a cheesy cornbread with my cheese. I followed my favorite cornbread recipe in the whole world, a recipe by Mark Bittman, but with a couple adaptations.
Cheesy Chives Cornbread
- 4 tablespoon oil
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/4 cup milk
- 1 1/2 cup cornmeal
- 1/2 cup flour
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 cup-ish chopped chives
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Pour oil into a baking pan, preferably a 8×8 or 9×9 inch one.
Mix eggs and milk in a small bowl. In a larger bowl, mix together cornmeal, flour, sugar, salt and baking powder.
Pour the egg-milk mixture into the dry ingredients, stir. Mix in chives and cheddar cheese, but reserve a small handful of the cheddar cheese.
Carefully lift the oiled pan out of the hot oven. The oil might sputter, so be careful. Once it exploded in my hands. Don’t worry, that won’t happen to you. Hopefully.
Pour the batter into the pan, sprinkle remaining cheese over, and then bake for another 30 minutes at 375 degrees, or until done. Take out of oven and let cool.
Now here’s where I made a freaking boo-boo. I FORGOT THE BAKING POWDER!! Waaaah!!
I realized that when I sliced into the cornbread and realized that it was much denser than I expected.
Boo hoo hoo. So sad. I can’t believe I wasted good cheese on this golden brick!
Actually, it wasn’t too bad. It was still entirely edible, and I still ate it. It was just more like a pancake…almost like a Korean chives pancake, actually. So I dried my tears and ate up with chopsticks and kimchi.
Yeah, don’t let the fork fool you. I never use forks for meals. Always chopsticks. I’m a good little Asian. Who eats too much cheese and hates white rice. Speaking of chopsticks…Apparently China buys wooden chopsticks from a hicky town called Americus in Georgia…Huh?! Wacky!
Anyway. Don’t forget the baking powder if you ever get to make this, but if you do forget, it’s still perfectly yummy. I pan-fried the remaining cornbread on a skillet the next day. I’m munching on it right now, in fact.
So as you can see, my weekend was fabbity fab fab: old friends, a hike, a marvelous Hollywood view, shopping at Smart & Final, church, and lots and lots of cheese.
This is the cheesiest way to end a cheesy post.
Question of the Day: What’s a perfect Sunday for you? What’s your favorite section at the grocery store?
****Disclaimer: This project has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for #collectivebias.