Brotherly Love

I was really impressed with Philadelphia as a city. I only spent a long weekend there but I felt like I got to see most of the sights and get a real flavor of the city (though that flavor was slightly greasy [in a good way]). As soon as I stepped of the plane it was straight to Johnny Manana’s for their giant griddle of melted cheese. The queso was excellent, the margs were horrible. I then got settled into my friend’s house who were hosting me for the week, at a yummy home cooked meal and washed it all down with a few beers at the Dark Horse in the city. The Dark Horse is a Philadelphia style Irish pub with strong roots, located in a 2 story colonial rowhouse complete with dark wood, exposed brick, and one of the oldest working fireplaces in the city.

We kicked off our first full day in the City Of Brotherly Love with Philly cheese steaks of course.

One of the people I was staying with was a highschool history teacher, and a native Philly who’s in love with his city. He was the perfect tour for all of the historical sights we visited on Saturday. We spent the entire afternoon seeing all the historical sights. The liberty bell, Independence hall, First national bank, The oldest residential street in the US, the National Constitution Center, and a bunch more. I think I might have been a little bored if it weren’t for the interesting anecdotes and facts provided by our good friend/tour guide.

Over There

For dinner we went to the tasty but slightly overpriced White Dog Cafe. A restaurant known for there social activism as much as their food. The atmosphere was cool and a little fancy. It made for a great “nice night out”.

Sunday I slept in and had a leisurely breakfast then went to the Mütter Museum. This has to be one of the most interesting museums I’ve ever been to. It was filled with biological/anatomical oddities – conjoined twins, casts of heads suffering from acute, a 30 foot colon, the soap woman, the Chevalier Jackson collection of over 2,000 objects swallowed and removed from the trachea, celebrity body parts, encased longitudinal slices of the head showing the brain. It’s all enough to make you gasp and then get a little queasy. Muffled shouts of “My God, look at that BABY MONSTER!” are often heard and quite appropriate.

Then it was off to the impressive Philadelphia Museum Of Art. I must have spent nearly four hours exploring this place.
Felix Gonzalez-Torres.

On Monday we spent the morning hiking around the Wissahickon Creek. It’s so great that Philly has a such a large, heavily wooded park right next to the city.
Thomas Mill Road Covered Bridge
In fact, Philly was filled with parks and was one of the many things I found attractive about it. Anyway, our trip ended shortly after with a flight back to Denver that seemed to take forever.

The Unrepentant Evil Of Black Fudge Or Chöcolate Cüpcakes

Death metal + incredible dessert recipes = The Black Oven – immaculate confections succumbed to northern darkness. With recipes like “Where the Chocolate Beats Incessant”, “Le Petit Gateau du Les Legions Noire -Traditional cupcakes inspired by untraditional black metal”, and “Frostbitten Molasses Cookies Entombed with Ginger” this promises to be the best black metal cooking site on the web.

I’m pretty sure lemon curd doesn’t exist in Norway. However, if by some miracle Odin had bestowed upon the snow beaten north the gift of citrus, the vikings would have probably made these. Buried beneath the mountains of frost…are cookies! These are best enjoyed while basking in the self-righteousness of your own obscurity.

Don’t stop there. The Breadmaster Strikes!!!!!!!!!! comes in a close second when it comes to baking in hallowed depths of hellfire. SeitanWörshipper does a pretty good dark metal/food blog (from Finland of course) too.

Dog Gone It: 8 Foods To Keep Away From Your Dog

There is are naturally occurring stimulants theobromine and methylxanthine compounds found in cocoa beans will cause vomiting, heart problems, seizures and death in dogs. Despite it’s morbid premise this amazing National Geographic infographic will tell you exactly how much chocolate it takes to kill your dog. Other foods to keep Fido and Spot away from include:

Alcohol – Alcohol depresses brain function in dogs and can send them into a coma. It can cause further damage by turning their blood acidic.
Onion – An onions damage to canine hemoglobin is cumulative, so small tastes over time can be worse than wolfing down the whole bulb. It will eventually cause anemia.
Grapes – Toxicologists have found that grapes and raisins can cause acute renal and kidney failure. As few as ten raisins or grapes, anywhere from nine ounces (255 grams) to two pounds (0.9 kilograms), could be fatal.
Macadamia Nuts – Experts have yet to determine why just a few of these nuts can produce tremors, even temporary paralysis, in a dog’s hind legs.
Garlic – Dogs don’t have the necessary enzyme to properly breakdown the compound thiosulphate so garlic, in any form, breaks down a dog’s red blood cells, and large amounts over time can lead to anemia and possible kidney failure from leaking hemoglobin.
Coffee – The caffeine in a cup of java is a methylxanthine compound that binds to receptors on cell surfaces, precluding the normal compounds from attaching there.
Bread – Like alcohol, ingestion of yeast can cause fatal damage. Active yeast found in raw bread dough releases alcohol as it grows.

Wednesday’s Wonderful World Of Wikipedia: Negative Calorie Foods

Wednesday’s Wonderful World of Wikipedia for this week is a link to a list of foods that have negative calories. Although no foods actually contain negative calories, this list contains foods that require more energy to break down than is released from the chemical digestion of that foodstuff, resulting in a net loss of energy (calories) experienced by the body.

Thanking New York: Days Three & Four

Day three was spent in apathy, on the couch, working (poor word choice) off the over indugances from the day before.

We did manage to hit up the wonderful Borough. This restaurant is aiming its services at those interested the new locavore trend. All of the ingredients are locally grown and produced in New York City and used to create dishes inspired by the five boroughs. Green and delish.

On Sunday we went and a homemade brunch and pleasant morning visiting friends and relatives we headed down to Columbus Park to play Soccer.

We started that evening off at the Cub Room (which is nice but pretty unmentionable) for cocktails and then headed down the street for sushi at Blue Ribbon Sushi. From the time you walk up to the non descript restaurant front, to walking down into the little cubby hole entrance, to the impressive line of sushi chefs, you know you have stumbled upon something special. The sushi was outrageous in the best way possible. Lilly Allen eats there seven times a week. I had the pleasure of trying box style sushi (mackerel) and jellyfish sushi – two things that you can’t find in Denver (if you know otherwise, I’d love to find out about it). We finished the night off at with a couple of drinks at a bar I can’t remember the name of (too many Karin Ichiban) where we were entertaining enough for the bartender to buy us a round.

The next day I flew back to Denver thankful to have experienced a culinary New York, but also just as thankful to be home.