Lucky Dip – Tuesday, December 13th, 2011

Even at Christmas, friends, it is unwise to accept drinks from strangers, as these visitors to a Berlin Christmas market discovered last week. [Spiegel Online]

Nutty as a fruitcake. The folks at Fabarnak are selling fruitcakes. All you haters shut up, these ones are supposed to rock. [NOW]

In the olden days, we wrote recipes on these paper cards… Don’t toss Grandma’s recipe cards just yet. You might have transferred everything to an electronic device but retro nostalgia means those stained bits of cardboard will be worth some cash some day. [Slate]

Just pop the Lactaid, buddy. You cannot increase or decrease your body’s tolerance for lactose. [Globe and Mail]

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Lucky Dip – Wednesday, November 30th, 2011

Wait now… people lined up to get into a grocery store? And they weren’t even giving away anything good like a free turkey? And there wasn’t anything like a natural disaster or an alien attack about to happen? Toronto really has turned into a city of consumer-driven sheep, hasn’t it? [The Grid]

I am utterly over the cupcake trend to the point of annoyance. And I never got into the Star Wars thing… but this cupcake is allowed to exist because it cracks me up. [My Food Looks Funny]

Why we’re all over the daily deal sites and why you should support local indie restaurants, just because. [Bon Appetit]

Nutty as a…? Grandma Deb’s might be the benchmark of fruitcake, but I’d still pit mine against all comers. (Actually, if you can get your hands of a piece of fruitcake from the recipe Chef John Higgens used at Buckingham Palace – THAT’S the benchmark of fruitcake.)[Toronto Star]

The interesting history of Vernor’s gingerale. [Serious Eats]

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Fruitcake Pr0n – Assume the Missionary Position

Every year there’s at least one of them. The fruitcake-hater. They’re a timid lot. Someone, at some point in time, has put “the fear” in them. In many cases, it was years ago; some manufactured atrocity handed out at the office, or Great-Aunt Bertha’s dry stale creation that’s been handed back and forth from branch to branch of the family for a dozen years or more.

I take my work as a fruitcake missionary very seriously. The thrill of the challenge of fightin’ words laid down with a combination of stubbornness and trepidation; it must have been what brought the religious zealots back to the south seas islands again and again for the chance to convince the heathen natives that clothes really were better than running around naked. Fruitcake really *is* better than no fruitcake, you just have to trust me.

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Grocery Store Musings

How very sad is it that the local supermarket had cans of cooked pumpkin (for piemaking) priced at $2.09, yet a pre-made pie was going for $1.97?? No wonder people are more inclined to buy the pre-made crap. Even if you use the excuse of a lack of time and skill (and really, pumpkin is the easiest of pies to make, seeing as it tastes better with a graham crust and you just have to mix the can of pumpkin with an egg and some spices), there’s no way you can argue with the fact that a pre-made pie is going to run at half the cost of a from-scratch pie once you calculate all the ingredient costs.

Taste should be a factor, of course, and one look at the ingredients label should convince anyone with a brain to go for the homemade version, but even the day after Thanksgiving, those pies were flying out the door.

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