January 31, 2013 | By diana | Comments
Nine times out of ten, I intentionally forget my iPod when I leave my apartment. I’m not one of those isolated earbud-plugged blokes — rather, I like listening to New York and, to be frank, I love eavesdropping. One of the best parts of living in a city is that people are everywhere. Always. To some, the lack of privacy and of quiet is a pitfall of city life, but to a slyly intrusive, nosy bugger like me, it’s a total perk. Some of my best laughs as of late have been provoked by the conversations between my unsuspecting street-walking and subway-sitting neighbors. Take, for example, my overheard gem of the day:
A young man and woman, assumably just friends, walk quickly (or as quickly as a man can while wheeling a bike). It’s a chilly evening and neither the man nor woman wears gloves. Wrapped around the handlebars, the man’s hands are, without a doubt, numb with cold.
Woman: Thank you so much for walking my bike home.
Man: Yeah, well you better have some food at your apartment.
Woman: Uh… Oh! I have sharkies!
Woman: Yeah, you know, those shark-shaped fruity gummy snacks?
Man: *pause* Do you have anything an adult would eat?
Woman: *laughs* I might have a yogurt in the fridge…
Okay, so the twenty-something year old girl still eats fruit snacks just as I still get excited about the free toys in the cereal box. Some things will never change, right? Who says that when we grow up we have to suddenly stop enjoying the music, TV shows, games, and snacks that we loved so much throughout our youth? I certainly never did. I’ll be the first to admit that I still listen to *NSYNC and the Backstreet Boys and love every minute of it; I still sleep with a stuffed bear; and I get a real kick out of lighting things on fire, especially the marshmallows for my smores.
I see no reason to be ashamed of these so-called juvenile pleasures. At the same time, however, they have their time and place — I probably wouldn’t bring Lunchables to a business lunch (for fear that sipping a Capri Sun while constructing a mega pizza masterpiece might cause my coworkers to question my maturity). Thanks to their packaging, certain foods scream “FOR KIDS ONLY.” Well you know what? I know how to make those same foods not suitable for kids: just add liquor.
The great thing about food is that it’s adaptable and easily elevated to please the more sophisticated palate. For example, the lowly, kid-friendly smore can be transformed into a formal dinner party-worthy dessert just by transforming the structure (but maintaining the flavors) and adding a good kick of whiskey. Baked’s smore-style whiskey chocolate pudding with whiskey marshmallow topping has everything that every kid loves about the classic smore, including the flame, plus a little more.
So how could we convince a skeptical adult to eat a sharkie gummy? Try soaking it in vodka.
[Ed note: The above recipe, S’more-Style Chocolate Whiskey Pudding, appears in Baked Elements]