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Monday, August 1, 2011

Budget Protein and Cheap Eats

I ate his penis with some fava beans and a nice Chianti
"OMG! Are you eating dicks!!!" PT exclaimed as he looked at the mystery meat in the bowl on the counter.
I cast him a side eye and keep chopping garlic and cilantro, casually throwing it into the bowl. I just ignored him and continued on the task at at hand.
"No, seriously," he implored, "WHAT IS THAT?!"
The longer he looked a this collaboration of Catherine Kieu Becker and Lorena Bobbit's greatest hits, the more his apprehension and discomfort grew. Chuckling under my breathe, I looked at him and said, "They're cow dicks, bro. Dicks from baby angel cows."

After that answer, he gave me a look that should only be reserved for people who have stolen something from you. Well, now that I think about it, I kinda did steal his something. I don't know how to qualify it, but you show a man a bowlful of something that he thinks is dicks, you've taken something away from him.
Anyway, what's actually in the bowl is a little less "The First 48" than it appears. They're pig tails!

I've been going to ethnic grocers ( Mexican, Middle Eastern) for a while because I love to try new foods and flavors. One huge upside to going to these types of grocery stores is that their meat and produce is more often than not priced way below what you find at your average neighborhood supermarket. They have real butchers and not just prepackaged stuff that arrives in on trucks so you can find lots of cuts; some you may never even actually laid eyes on. Like these pig tails!
Our family, like many, many others has a pretty tight food budget. I mean "tight like my presurgery pants" tight. I was talking to Blackberry Mama the other day about this same thing. For my family, I've decide that I'm going to eat the stuff that isn't as shiny and pretty; the stuff that nourished my ancestors and carried them through times of hardship. I love a ribeye like nobody's business, but honestly they aren't that hard to do well. How many of you can say that you made pigtails and it was an otherworldly experience? I can. At 1.69 a lb, that meal left the 10.99 ribeye battered and bruised.
While the price point is a definitive selling point, eating tails, and feet, and other not so pretty things makes me feel connected.
Connected to the earth, the animal
Connected to the immigrants and slaves that took the scraps that were given to them and survived
Connected to my family. Cooking is an extension of my love.

They turned out really good, and I may post a recipe for them in the near future.  I DO know that WHOLE, HEALTHY budget meal ideas will be a recurring guest on my blog. I just got 5lbs of cabbage for a dollar, so its gonna be fun. I hope PT feels like being my guinea pig.

Image: graur razvan ionut / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

10 comments:

  1. LMAO! You go right ahead. My mom and family ate everything on the pig from the rooter to the tooter, but not me! I didn't eat it, do I know I don't know how to cook it. Bon Appetit! Richelle

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  2. I've been hitting Super Hmart, a great Asian market, for a few weeks now. Not only can I get great prices on seafood and meats, but their produce kicks ass!

    We are having escarole and beans tomorrow. Healthy, cost effective and delicious!

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  3. Sorry WW...........gotta pass on the protein this time. Pigs tails/dicks? NOT gonna happen! Lol. But you enjoy! ;-)

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  4. lol @richelle

    @vsgmom I haven't been to an Asian market in ages. I might hit up one this week when my sister gets here.

    @Maria lmao. They WERE really good

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  5. she's eatin' penis, ya'll! My daddy ate bull balls. buy them up and freeze em' girl. you know they'll be a delicacy and high like oxtails before long.

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  6. Being that I'm Mexican-American I can see how some people might freak out at some of the stuff we eat. But like you said, it's fun to try new foods from other countries. Have you had tacos de lengua? (beef tongue) People think it sounds nasty, but those are some of the BEST tacos EVER!!

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  7. Way,

    You KNOW I'm feelin' you on THIS!!! I love to travel around to different grocers too. I still buy smoked neckbones because, ha! They're so GOOD and they taste GREAT stewed in a pot of beans or super cheap collard greens! Can you say protein, fiber & Vitamin A went and got married in my pot??

    I love you for this post. Be inspired, write more like this.

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  8. Good call on starting out by saying they were cow dicks. Had you started with pig tails I would have freaked the freak out. But pig tails compared to cow dicks? Not so bad, actually.

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  9. I agree with the sarcasm goddess lol 0_o

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  10. I don't think I could eat anything that looks that much like penis...unless I was getting paid a whole lot (J. Howard Marshall anyone). I will try about anything though as long as I don't know what it is and it doesn't look like that ;)

    Southernsleever

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