Saturday, November 22, 2014

Want to at least pretend to be health-conscious? These appetizers might help....

Thanksgiving is coming up, and with it, the season for pretending that all the holiday goodies won't leave you with only one item of clothing that fits: a muumuu like the one Homer Simpson wore when he got serious about being fat.

So, how to avoid this fate? The less effective but more fun way is to pretend that everything you eat is healthier than it really is. Say you come upon this tray of yummy-looking, clearly deep fried appetizers (from Elizabeth Price's Hors d'Oevres & Appetizers, 1978).

Maybe you think, "I really shouldn't! Dinner will be ready in just a little while and that's more than enough."

Then the host sees you gazing longingly at these golden nuggets of goodness and says, "Oh, go ahead. They're good for you! They're made with Lima beans."

Maybe the words "Lima beans" make you suspicious, but you don't SEE any Lima beans. Then you start thinking about how delicious hummus can be, and it's mostly ground up beans. Plus it doesn't even have the advantage of being deep fried. Surely you should at least try these to get your legumes for the day and offset all the cream and butter you are about to ingest with the mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie....

The more effective tactic to avoid the holiday hundred (like the freshman fifteen, but bigger!) is to not be tempted by the appetizers in the first place.

If it weren't for the garnishes around the edges, I'm not sure it would even occur to me that this glistening pink tower was meant to be edible:

It looks like some ill-conceived children's art project that you'd have to display on the coffee table for at least a few months after the kid brought it home. Then in the spring you could declare that it would be a good mosaic tile for the walkway to the garden, but you'd have to dig an extra-deep hole to bury it so it would be level with the ground, and before the kiddo knows it, the art project has vanished....

Those eggs (your guess is as good as mine why they are stuffed with pink and green filling) suggest someone is meant to eat this, though. So what is it?

Ham mousse! So if you prefer your ham cold, congealed, and pounded in a mortar, looking like (to borrow a phrase from a movie I watch every December) a pink nightmare, this recipe might not help with weight control. The rest of us suddenly have the fortitude to wait until dinner.


  1. I'm just apologizing in advance but occassionally I have the sense of humour of a 13 y/o boy.
    BWAHAHAHA! Those ham slices look like tiny erect penises!!!

    P.S. I hope you haven't lost respect for me ;)

    1. Are you kidding? I'm just ashamed I didn't even think of that....