Catering and Party Planning

Caprese Salad

I’ve been catering regularly August 2019. I specialize in cocktail nosh for small parties. I have done Korean, Puerto Rican, Indian, Italian, Mediterranean and other cuisines. I write all the menus and design all the recipes myself. I specialize in parties, but I could do small dinners as well.

tailgate catering spread
Cocktail Party catering

I’ve set up a section of the IndigoDragon site with my chef info and pix of my food – hop over there and check it out!

Caprese Salad
Caprese Salad

You can get ahold of me via email (misangelaspam at gmail dot com), FB or IG. I can’t put my phone number here, but if you have it you can call or text me! Thanks!!

Looking for VSG/Bariatric info?

Hi there! If you’d like to see ONLY my extensive research on Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy, bariatric diet and managing GERD (reflux), you can filter out all my other posts and see just those by clicking HERE. You can see my vlogs about my VSG journey here.

To see any category (recipes, for instance), use the drop down menu to the right labeled “View Posts by Category” and select the category you’d like. Thanks for stopping by!

Just Eat It: A Food Waste Story

I watched a documentary called Just Eat It: A Food Waste Story (2014). Food waste is a big deal to me and I’ll watch any documentary about it.

My biggest complaint with this particular doc is that the writers/stars are young and don’t seem to understand the WHOLE issue of food waste, only parts of it. They go on a six month journey of only eating food they can get for free (from dumpsters, etc.) or culled items (that would be thrown away) that they are allowed to buy. My issue with them is that they then turn around and get obsessive about the expiry dates on the food they get. ? A LARGE part of food waste is EXACTLY that people throw away food that is one minute past the expiry date, regardless of whether the food is still good or not.

So this couple forages in dumpsters and the food they find is astounding. Most of it is not expired and in full retail packaging, undamaged. It’s not like they are eating scraps! NOT AT ALL. The perfectly good food thrown out by groceries is mind numbing.

The documentary does have lots of interviews with people who do cover the issues of farming waste, restaurant waste, expiry date waste and overall global waste, as well as which foods use up the most resources. All these things are covered, I just didn’t like that the main story line was marred by their slavish adherence to the fictional expiry dates on the foods they foraged.

Food waste is a big deal to me. I HATE IT. I was raised by Depression era grandparents and WWII era parents, so there was not a lot of waste in our house. We had a big garden and my grandmother canned veggies every year. I grew up eating fresh veg in the summer and “put up” veg in the winter.

When I started learning about how much food is wasted just in households, I was shocked. I couldn’t believe that people did not eat leftovers. I couldn’t believe that people would throw out anything that was past the Use By date – even canned goods! Food thrown out by households runs 5-25% of the food bought. !!

Then there’s retail food. Sigh. Much of the reason so much produce is wasted is because retailers have strict and specific rules about the veg they receive. Only the perfect veg/fruit is sent to retail. The average waste for farmers is 40-50%, just because the items are not perfect. You’d think that finding uses for the rest of the produce would not be hard… You’d be wrong. Only a small amount is used for animal feeds and an even smaller part is used for processed things like jam or canning. It is insane.

In addition, retailers will cull produce that is NEARING its sell by date and throw it out. They are not allowed to sell it because of “food safety”, which is 100% bullshit. It’s not about safety, it’s about IMAGE. I will say that the ethnic markets are MUCH better about selling imperfect food than big chains. This is one of my favourite images from the Korean market:

Imperfect Veg at Korean Mart

I’m glad that there is at least one ordering service that will send you ugly veg – but there needs to be more. There needs to be more organizations who glean the fields after mechanical harvesting. There needs to be more participation of retailers in giving culled food to food banks, shelters and other organizations who can put that food to use.

And finally, I implore you to examine your OWN food waste. How much food do YOU throw out? Do you eat leftovers? How often do you throw out produce that’s gone over [aka you overbought]? How often do you throw out food that is NOT bad, yet it’s past the fictional Use By date?

Just an hour ago, I made a VAT of stew from 4-5 containers of leftovers and some fresh greens. It’s a little weird, but still quite edible. NO WASTE.

As with most things, change starts with the person in the mirror.

GERD update

I’m still taking no PPIs and only the occasional H2 (Pepcid). The GERD is still around, however, it’s just kind of like whack a mole with how it pops up.

I still have reduced stomach capacity – about .75 cup rather than 1-1.25 cup with PPI, but that’s ok. I really don’t mind that. What I DO mind is random freak outs of Lil Tummy. Occasionally, I’ll have pain after I eat, particularly if it’s protein. It’s like an overfull pain, despite not eating that much volume.

Occasionally, I’ll have a bout of GERD about a half hour after eating. Which is odd. Typically, Lil Tummy will exact its revenge right after I eat too much or have something it doesn’t like. ??

Same goes for night time. Sometimes it’s fine, other times, I’ll have acid up to my throat. No rhyme or reason.

The good news is that Tums will calm any burning and at night, Pepcid will calm the reflux for sleep. Not much can be done for when Lil Tummy decides I’ve eaten too much or the wrong thing and it gets painful. Just gotta ride it out.

Due to taking Pepcid 1-2x a week, I still struggle with constipation issues. I’ve found the herbal supplement Smooth Move to be extremely good at helping with this. I hope all this will plane out eventually, but if not, eh, I’ll live. I don’t gripe about it too much, because Nick has fibromyalgia and has body pain pretty much every day. I don’t feel as bad as he does, so I really have little to complain about.

I do think that things are getting incrementally better. I hope that continues. I still do NOT regret VSG surgery. It’s the best thing I’ve ever done for myself.

The Schism of Gen X

So there was a convo on FB that started off about how “Karen” ended up being the name all over the internet, from this definition:

WHAT DOES KAREN MEAN?
Karen is a mocking slang term for an entitled, obnoxious, middle-aged white woman. Especially as featured in memes, Karen is generally stereotyped as having a blonde bob haircut, asking to speak to retail and restaurant managers to voice complaints or make demands, and being a nagging, often divorced mother from Generation X.

Which steered the thread to a discussion about Gen X and how there seems to be different kinds of Gen Xers – to which I absolutely agree. I was not called a Karen, it was just the start of the discussion. Here’s what I said (slight edits for clarity):

As an elder Gen Xer (b 1965) raised by Silent Generation (b/t Depression and WWII) parents (NOT Boomers), I can tell you that there is ABSOLUTELY a schism in Gen Xers. There are ones like me, who were not precisely early adopters of the internet, but whole heartedly adopted in the mid 90s. BBS and chat rooms, OH MY! Those of us who got into tech in the 90s are VERY different animals than those who eschewed tech and lagged behind until FB made them feel like they “finally” understood the internet (LOL x 100).

The ONLY people I have contact with from my generation growing up are those who are technically adept. Why? Because those of us who kept up tend to be FAR FAR more knowledgeable about the world in general because we have used the internet for decades and understand how to do searches, how to spot FAKE shit and how to filter our shit to find the TRUTH.

Those of us who have been online since the 90s understand how to use the power of the internet to LEARN things and broaden our horizons. AND talk to people from EVERYWHERE. Those GenXers who went off to breed and had little to nothing to do with technology, were left behind in SO many ways. And the irritating part is that they can’t even understand how left behind they are. Hence so many of them being fucking MAGAts. They don’t even know how little they know. And by the gods, no one can tell them anything, either, because if it doesn’t line up with their ideals readily, then it MUST be that the internet (aka the whole world) is just trying to trick them. (Because the internet is big and scary!!)

I resent being put in the same category as the idiot GenXers who know nothing about that there internet or them there smart phones.

THAT IS NOT ME. Nor is it any of MY GenX friends.

There ARE two kinds of GenXers. Absolutely. The smart ones and the left behind ones – regardless of where they fall within the dates (1965-1980). I am old, yes, but I am a tech savvy NERD. FEAR ME, young ‘uns, I’ll dox the FUCK out of you. And: get off my fucking lawn. LOL :D

Pandemic 2020

I feel I need to write a post about this debacle – even tho it’s in the second peak and (hopefully) decline. Covid-19 is a beast and a very nasty strain of flu/SARS. I’m not worried about getting it since I’ve got a VERY robust immune system, however, I might be a carrier. Who knows? There are no tests in this country, which is why 100,000 people are dead with more to come. No tests, no way to track, NOTHING. And things are opening back up. Bad idea.

Since March, we’ve been locked down. It is almost June. It sucks. I get that, but opening up now (as they did in 1918) will cause a huge second wave.

My catering stopped the first week in March. Nick’s job staggered on for a few weeks, then it stopped, too. We were very concerned about money, naturally, since we’d drained our backups for the bankruptcy. (At least the bankruptcy is going through and we are out from under the $60k business debts.)

We got the $1200/ea stimulus ($2400), which would cover us for about a month. The politicians thought this money would cover 10 weeks. LOL of course they did, rich fucks that they are. They think bread is 25¢ a loaf and rent is $150/mo because they’ve not paid a bill themselves in 60 years (they have accountants for that).

Luckily, Nick’s boss filed for his unemployment and he’s been getting that plus the $600/wk pandemic money. It’s all we’ve got. I applied for the “gig workers” PUA (Pandemic Unemployment Assistance), which has still yielded nothing. [UPDATE: as of the end of May, I finally got the back pay for UI and PUA, which was over $7k hitting the bank account. We are happy to have it, because PUA (the $600/wk) is about to end and who knows when our work will come back.]

Since this country is led by a moron and his hillbilly followers all think the pandemic is a hoax, the US has been hit harder than other countries. The MAGAts think that wearing a mask is unconstitutional and infringing on their rights, so the spread of Covid-19 is still going. Opening up businesses and public places is going to ramp up the victim count again, but hey, it’s just us peasants, right? It’s more important to let people do what they want, when they want, in any fashion they want than trying to stem the spread of Covid-19, right? Sure it is. Because 3% is acceptable losses to keep the stock market strong! Just ask the rich fuckers like the illustrious fucknut in chief.

I wear a mask when out to protect others, not myself. I have no idea if I am a carrier or not since there are no tests. I might be? Since I never get sick, I might’ve picked up Covid-19 and not had any symptoms. THAT is the problem with this strain of flu/SARS! It is very sneaky and very virulent if someone wins the shit lottery and gets it just the right way. Plenty of people have had it and survived – even Nick’s brother in law did, and he’s not in particularly excellent health. BUT many younger people who are healthy get it and die just out of shit luck. SO. It’s best to err on the side of caution.

This country is a shit show. It is led by an idiot. And that idiot will get re-elected by his legion of hillbillies. In the meantime, nothing is happening: no cons, no concerts, no movies, no sports, no large gatherings. BUT you can go swimming at the local pool and you can go shopping at Ross and nevermind wearing a mask, only losers do THAT. Yup. Merika.

And that’s all I have to say about the Pandemic. We’ll survive, but this shitty country may not. And I’m OK with that. We got passports and an exit strategy.

Creamy Herbed Feta Dressing

Creamy Herbed Feta Dressing
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Creamy Herbed Feta Dressing

I love homemade dressings and this one is a melange of several different ones I make regularly. It has a creamy base - much like a herbed ranch dressing - with added crumbled feta. You can use this basic recipe for pretty much any combination of herbs, with or without feta. Enjoy!
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Keyword creamy salad dressing, feta salad dressing, herbed salad dressing, salad dressing
Prep Time 10 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Author misangela

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup buttermilk Don't have any buttermilk? Use regular milk and add 1 tsp of vinegar to make it curdle. Voila! Buttermilk substitute.
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise more or less to get the thickness you want
  • 1/3 cup sour cream OR full fat plain greek yogurt (or mix both!)
  • 2 Tbl seasoned rice wine vinegar OR lime juice + zest
  • 3 Tbl fresh herbs dill, cilantro, parsley, mint (whatever you've got)
  • 1 scallion, very finely sliced optional
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta No need for pricey feta here, the President crumbled is FINE. Get the herbed kind for more flavour! This is also OPTIONAL.
  • 1 Tbl olive oil
  • 1 tsp pasted fresh garlic (3 cloves) OR Indian garlic paste
  • S/P to taste Go a little saltier than you think it should be so it adequately seasons the salad.

Instructions

  • Mix everything together in a bowl. Do not over mix the feta, you want the crumbles to be intact (if you are using feta). This makes about 1 3/4 cups or so and will keep for a week or so in the fridge.

Notes

This is a really great dressing base. Change it up to suit your tastes! Leave out the feta! Add double the herbs and blend for a Green Goddess dressing. Use lots of lime and cilantro for a Mexican inspired dressing. The sky's the limit!