Sass & Bite

"If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they'll kill you" Oscar Wilde

Month: September, 2013

Things I Can’t: Carl’s Jr. Pop Tart Ice Cream Sandwich


Yes, this is now a thing. Carl’s Jr., purveyors of questionable burgers and star-shaped chicken nuggets (I don’t know why that wasn’t more suspicious to me as a child. They’re all in the shape of perfect stars. How did I not question this?) have found yet another way to make the rest of the world look down their noses at us, which they can do because they don’t have four chins blocking their view.

I know someone is going to ask me why this is offensive to me when I’m all in favor of cookie ice cream sandwiches, but please. Ice cream and cookies were made for each other. The primary ingredients of Pop Tarts are a disproportionate amount of flavorless dry crust, chemicals, and the tears of real strawberries.

They don’t even taste good and I refuse to believe that they wouldn’t ruin perfectly good ice cream. Which is not to say that I believe Carl’s Jr. uses anything even remotely resembling ice cream. Let’s be real here. I don’t want to think too closely about what it could be, but I’m sure it’s the ice cream equivalent of pink slime.

Also, this:

carl's jr. comic con promoters

At what point in your life. . . How do you get to a point in your life where you dress up as Carl’s Jr. Pop Tart Ice Cream Sandwich Superheroes for Comic-Con and not think, “nope, I’m done. I’m just gonna end it all”?


Spicy Black Bean Hummus: Your New Lip Venom

I have this condition (self-diagnosed) where I’m immune to spicy things. Not even that I have an unusually high spicy tolerance; there are times I am unaware that a dish was intended to be spicy at all, when everyone else’s mouth is on fire. It’s possible I’ve burned off all my tastebuds with hot coffee. Or that I lost them in an unfortunate chili pepper incident I had as a child.


Let that just serve as a preface to this. Some might say “warning”, but I say “preface”.  Anyway. One of my favorite snacks is carrots and cucumbers with Trader Joe’s roasted garlic hummus. It’s pretty fly. It’s just a little more extra than regular hummus.

But recently I decided to change things up. Thanks to my brother’s over-zealousness at the market (never send a teenage boy to do a woman’s job), I had a bunch of jalapeños lying around. And I remembered a spicy black bean hummus I’d once bought from the farmer’s market. And a great idea was born.

I really don’t detect much spice in this when you’re actually eating it (but again, see the above disclaimer), but it does leave kind of an after-burn on your lips. Just some spicy tingling. If you’re into that Lip Venom shit that makes your lips all tingly and swollen and stuff, you could try this out instead. It’s cheaper, it tastes better, and it’s not filled with bee venom or vampire blood or whatever.

If not, just de-seed the jalapeño before you use it (I left some of them in), which will cut down on the heat, and you could also scale back the cayenne or red pepper, or add more tahini, which has a cooling effect. Whatever floats your boat.


1/2 can of black beans

1/2 can chickpeas

1/2 medium-sized jalapeño, chopped

2 cloves garlic

1/8 tsp. crushed red pepper

1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper

1/4 tsp. coarse salt (I like sea salt)

1 tbl. tahini

juice of a lemon (a few squeezes is good)

drizzle of olive oil

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and mix until smooth. Stir halfway through to make sure everything gets evenly distributed.

Serve with vegetables, pita wedges, chips, on a sandwich or in a salad.

Hair Bling

Lately I’ve grown bored with the same hair-down look, luscious though my locks are. Let’s examine some pretty, (mostly) simple ways of dressing it up. Just a lil pizzaz.

Pizzaz is such a great word, no?


Pretty and unexpected

Bling Bun.

Bling Bun.




Oh you fancy, huh?


Bow crazy


Messy ponytail + studs + oxblood leather = my jam



And just for fun, if you’re really brave:


An Open Cease-and-Desist Letter to Whoever’s In Charge of Holidays and Advertising and Time and Stuff

This has gone too. far. I am putting my foot down.

I just heard the ice cream truck outside my office playing Christmas carols. I know that it is now playing exclusively Christmas carols because it chose to sit outside and taunt me for nearly 20 minutes as I sit trapped at a desk, ice cream-less. But that’s another story.

This the last straw. The media and the world and the people in charge of Target and stores have all been trying to convince me that Christmas was yesterday, and I am tired of it. I started seeing Halloween stuff in August, for Christ’s sake. I saw disturbing cartoon Thanksgiving turkeys in several establishments this week. Christmas things are starting to pop up in place of the Fall things they’re already discounting.  And I am done with it. Fall is basically the best season (summer has a slight lead, obviously), filled with great things — like the start of The Holidays — and you are ruining it. You know what you’re doing?

You are blowing your load too early.

Is that what you want? Is it? Don’t make me bored and tired of Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas six months beforehand. Please. Like some other things in life, no matter how fun and exciting it is, you don’t want to get to the finish too quickly. Know what I’m sayin’? Good, I’m glad we had this talk.

But seriously, I haven’t even thought of my Halloween costume yet. So pump. the. brakes.

Words of Wisdom

“The only thing to do with good advice is to pass it on — it is never of any use to oneself.” –Oscar Wilde

1. There is nothing worse than a party pooper.

2. Make to-do lists with little check boxes. Even better, follow it up by actually doing the stuff, and then put little checks in the check boxes. It’s very satisfying. You can even cheat by putting things like “wash hair” and “make to-do list” on there so you can look at it and feel accomplished at the end of the day.

3. Resist the urge to step on the scale. Numbers are virtually meaningless — and scales are liars.

4. Look on the bright side!

5. Just because you put your blinker on at the last second doesn’t give you the right to cut me off and nearly send me crashing to my death in a fiery blaze, asshole.

6. Can we all just agree to stop calling bologna “food”?

7. Going to Costco for the sole purpose of eating all the samples, and counting this as a meal, is not only acceptable, but encouraged.

8. Wear your pretty / expensive things regularly. I know you’re saving it for a special occasion. But you can make any day a special occasion. Why deprive yourself — and the world — of the sight of that fabulous Chanel bag or the smell of that gorgeous and unmistakable perfume? It’s a disservice to us all. Also, you could die tomorrow.

Chocolate-Covered Graham Cracker Ice Cream Sandwiches

In the Definitive Ranking of Incredible Inventions that are Awesome, I’m going to put ice cream sandwiches somewhere near the top, right between the internet, chopsticks, and putting babies in animal costumes.

If there is some sort of invention that makes photographing said ice cream sandwiches easier, I would rank that very highly as well. Because this is messy work. Ice cream melts really really fast, apparently. But only when sandwiched between graham crackers.
IMG_9868I dipped the corners of the graham crackers in chocolate, because first of all, chocolate improves most things involving ice cream and second of all, it just needed a little something extra. And it looks great, no? One caveat: if you’re not gonna go full chocolate, eat these immediately, because the cracker will get soft the longer it stays in the freezer on the ice cream.

IMG_9856I had to re-freeze these for several hours because they they were ridiculous. The point is that the crackers lost their texture, except for the parts covered in chocolate, which stayed nice and crunchy.

For the ice cream, I used Ben & Jerry’s Red Velvet Cake, which I actually don’t like very much on its own because it’s really sweet, but it benefits nicely from what is essentially a graham cracker crust and the less-sweet chocolate; Ben & Jerry’s Vanilla Caramel Fudge, which is sensational always; and the coffee ice cream I made a few weeks ago. Clearly I have great taste, but really you can’t go wrong with flavors here.  Get at this.


Chocolate-Covered Graham Cracker Ice Cream Sandwiches


Ice cream of your choice
Graham Crackers
Semi-sweet, dark or milk chocolate


Line a cookie sheet or plate with wax paper.

We start by melting some chocolate (I used Ghiradelli semi-sweet chocolate chips): if you’re not fancy like me and don’t have a double broiler (peasant), you can just put an inch or so of water in a saucepan and put a glass mixing bowl filled with chocolate over it. The water shouldn’t touch the bowl at all, or the chocolate will seize. Heat the chocolate, stirring frequently, until it’s melted; turn off the flame.

Dip the corners, or the whole thing, of the cracker into the chocolate. Lay out on prepared sheet and place in fridge to cool. You can also put it in the freezer if you’re super impatient, not that I would know anything about that.

The rest I feel like I don’t have to explain: put ice cream between graham crackers. Consume. Repeat.


Inappropriate Things I Didn’t Notice in Movies as a Kid

I want to give a shout-out to the makers of children’s movies. Thanks for throwing in some off-color double-entredes and sometimes downright dirty jokes in there for the grown-ups. And now that I notice/understand some of them, I want to give a shout-out to my parents for letting me watch that smut.


They’re laughing at all the jokes I didn’t get

1. The “climax” scene of Dumbo. I watched this movie obsessively as a child and I’m 99% sure I thought it was funny at one point to whisper in sleeping peoples’ ears, “climax! climax! get to your climax!”. How am I not a sex offender?

2. Michael Jordan’s “performance issues” joke in Space Jam

3. Mt. Wannahockaloogie in Finding Nemo. Not inappropriate, but it definitely went over my head the first time I saw it. Classic.

4. When the condom breaks in Grease (“It broke. . . . I’ve had it since the 7th grade”).

5.   — Rizzo: “What’s up Kenicky?” 
      — Kenicky: “One guess”.  (Grease)

6.  — Danny: “Bite the weenie, Riz”.
     — Rizzo: “With relish”.  (Grease)

7. On the car in Grease: “The chicks’ll cream / it’s a real pussy wagon / she’ll have to put out before she even gets in”, etc. etc. etc.

7. Basically the entire screenplay of Grease.

8. When Alfalfa wakes up “soaking wet” after dreaming of Darla in Little Rascals.

Fashion Week (Month)

London Fashion Week kicks off tomorrow, New York has been this week, we haven’t even gotten to Paris yet. It’s fashionable all around. In honor of Fashion Week that’s really Fashion Month, and out of laziness, I’ve collected some photos. Some are from seasons past, some are from the most recent shows. Just lots of pretty pictures.


Michael Kors S/S 2014


Leigh Lezark a few years ago. Makes me realize how badly I need red feathers in my wardrobe.


Fall 2013


Photo by Stefano Coletti. That white dress is quite a statement.

Oscar de la Renta Spring 2014 — I’m loving these colors



The incomparable Carine Roitfeld leaving a show



French Voguettes led by Emannuelle Alt


Altuzarra making bold moves for Spring 2014


Vivienne Westwood Spring 2012. Gorgeous.

Things I Don’t Understand

I am very clever, we all know this to be true. But there are a lot of things that everyone seems to either understand or agree upon, that I just don’t get. They perplex me. Things like:

1. Why strawberries are considered a sexy food. They stain your whole mouth red when you bite into them. It looks like you’re bleeding. It’s actually kind of unpleasant, especially if you smile. And the little seeds are a liability too, they just get stuck in your teeth. None of this is sensual to me. I’m not saying I don’t like strawberries, I’m just confused as to why they’re always taken on romantic picnics or rooftop dinners or whatever. Stop bringing them. There’s no need to make it harder for me to look dazzling.

2. How square footage works. People always rattle these numbers off like it’s perfectly self-explanatory, but they’re meaningless to me. I tend to just make a generic face that could be interpreted either as surprised or impressed, and say something like “wow”, which can also be taken either way. It’s an exercise in bullshit. Although actually, I’m starting to suspect that no one else understands square footage either.

3. What Miracle Whip is. I know it’s some sort of polarizing substance that people get really worked up about and that it’s made up of suspicious chemicals and it’s nothing I would ever eat. But what is it? Is it like pretend whipped cream? Is it like pretend mayonnaise? What do you use it for, rednecks? (For some reason I feel that only trailer trash enjoy Miracle Whip. Is this true?)

4. Guys’ weight. Again, people say numbers at me and it means nothing. If you tell me that a guy is 5’11” and 185  pounds, I get no visual. I don’t know what that means — is he chubby? scrawny? more likely to be built? I don’t know. Tell me a girl is 5’9” and 103 lbs. and I know she should eat a sandwich. For a guy, you gotta give me more, because otherwise I don’t know if I should tell him to eat a sandwich or stop eating. This is important to me because I enjoy bossing people around.

These are the questions. . .

Buddha and Jewels


I’ve been on the hunt for a Buddha statue to drape my necklaces over forever. I still haven’t found quite what I’m looking for, but after I found this baby and spruced it up a bit, it’ll do nicely for holding my many rings and a few shorter necklaces. I stumbled across it at Ross, of all places, and even though it was shiny white ceramic and kind of tacky looking, I instantly saw potential.

First, I sanded it down lightly with sandpaper; I tried 220 at first but it was too fine so I switched to 150. It didn’t do much to the glaze, as far as I could tell, except for some microscopic scratches, but it did enough to hold a primer. It should be noted that I did somewhat fear karmic repercussions from the universe as I was sanding down Buddha’s face. But clearly I got over it. I did one coat of white primer and let it dry for two hours.


Then I broke out the spray paint — I used Krylon Hammered Finish in Dark Bronze, which I got  at Michael’s; I initially considered gold, my go-to, but I didn’t want it to compete with the jewelry. Then I toyed with the idea of a stone finish, possibly in a lighter color. Then I saw this dark metallic hammered finish I knew it would be perfect — neutral enough to enhance rather than clash with the jewelry, but still sleek.

Now matte after a coat of primer

Now matte after a coat of primer

With most spray paint, you want to hold it about 8 inches away from what you’re painting and move in smooth, overlapping strips. WIth this one, however, I realized you have to get right up close and get it on there thickly if you want the hammered effect to show — otherwise it just comes out a gunmetal grey.

Ta-da! The Finished Product

Ta-da! The Finished Product

All told, this little guy cost about $20. Whaaaat. So easy.

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