Hmm Weekly for March 9, 2021

Don't forget to set your clock back to Tuesday

DEP'T. OF CORRESPONDENCE

IN RESPONSE TO last week's account of a red-tailed hawk eating a squirrel, we received the following letter, which contains a description of carnivorous behavior:

The scuzzy Milwaukee version of this is when I was with my kids on the way to see the Bucks and we saw a dead pigeon floating in the Milwaukee River with a seagull perched on top of the corpse like a raft, eating the guts out of it.

—Jordan Ellenberg, Madison Wisconsin

Have you seen carnivorous behavior, or other noteworthy manifestations of nature, in your own area? Send your accounts to hmmweekly@hmmweekly.com.

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THOUGHT DEP’T.

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SNACK FOOD DEP'T

HARVEST SNAPS GREEN PEA SNACK CRISPS

I WILL NEVER stop trying to find snack food that is good for me, and I will never stop eating snack food, and I will never find snack food that is good for me, and that’s how it’s going with the whole looking for snack food that is good for me, because also, it has to taste good.

So the last time I was at the Price Club, I bought a bag of these Harvest Snaps Green Pea Snack Crisps (lightly salted), and it was a mistake, because when I got home I read the whole bag, and saw LIGHTLY SALTED, ugh. I never would have bought these if I had seen the note about “50% LESS SODIUM Than regular potato chips. Sodium has been lowered from 170 mg to 75 mg per serving.”

Anyway, in my taste test, I totally expected them to taste way worse, because LIGHTLY SALTED, but I was able to eat a whole bowl of ‘em, which is way better than my last taste test with From The Ground Up CAULIFLOWER Stalks (cheddar flavor), and I don’t know if 75 mg per serving is a lot or a little of sodium, but in this case, it’s not enough.

They are creepy looking, the “snack crisps,” they made ‘em look like pea pods, but they have sort of a styrofoam consistency, or at least they feel like what I think styrofoam would feel like if I put some in my snack-hole.

The homogeneity of the snack’s appearance is also disturbing. It’s not something that bugs me when I eat a Pringles, which have a super-homogenous form factor, but I think it’s because a Pringles does not look like anything from Nature, while also being dependably salty and life-affirming. These Snack Crisps are supposed to look like a Natural thing, and they are a mockery, a travesty even, of anything Natural.

Plus they are dry, the kinda dry that makes your mouth dry if you jam a fistful of the snack into your food orifice because you got bored eating them one piece at a time, you know?

They are not awful, and if you eat 22 pieces, which is a serving size, you get 5 g of Fiber, which I think is a lot, so that’s a healthy aspect, but I cannot recommend this product. Would not purchase again, and I’m thinking that’s even if I found ones that were not lightly salted, but I saw on the package that there are several permutations of the Harvest Snaps, one of which is a red lentil option, “tomato basil” flavored, so I might take a shot at a bag of those, but I dunno. Why can’t they just make a healthy Pringles?

COUNTERPOINT DEP’T.

THESE “HARVEST SNAPS” pea snacks appear to be an unfortunate and misleading rebranding of the classic CALBEE SNOWPEA CRISP, a triumph of snack technology. In its previous, appropriate guise, the CALBEE SNOWPEA CRISP did not present itself as wholesome or nutritive, but as an unashamed synthetic product. It was properly understood, and enjoyed, as something akin to the ANDY CAPP'S family of snack foods—ANDY CAPP'S PEA FRIES, if you will. Boy, I could go for a bag of CALBEE SNOWPEA CRISPS right now. Or ANDY CAPP'S HOT FRIES, really.

ADVICE DEP’T.:

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VISUAL CONSCIOUSNESS DEP’T.

Easter, cont’d.

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SANDWICH RECIPES DEP’T.

NOTE: This department contains descriptions of carnivorous behavior.

WE PRESENT recipes for sandwiches from Salads, Sandwiches and Chafing Dish Recipes, Copyright 1916, by David McKay, Publisher, and now in the public domain for the delectation of all, written by Marion Harris Neil, M.C.A., former Cookery Editor, The Ladies’ Home Journal, author of How to Cook in Casserole Dishes, Candies and Bonbons and How to Make Them, Canning, Preserving and Pickling, and The Something-Different Dish.

CHESTNUT SANDWICHES
1/2 pint (1 cup) boiled chestnuts
1 gill (1/2 cup) cream
1/2 oz. (1 tablespoonful) butter
Salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoonful lemon-juice
Buttered bread or cake

Put the chestnuts through a food-chopper. Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the chestnuts, stir for a minute, then add the cream and seasonings and cook until slightly browned. Cool and use between thin slices of buttered bread or cake.

CHEESE CANAPÉS
1/4 lb. cheese
8 rounds bread
1 oz. (2 tablespoonfuls) butter
Salt and red pepper to taste
1 teaspoonful made mustard
2 teaspoonfuls sherry wine

Cut rounds of stale or toasted bread; fry the rounds a golden color in hot fat. Cut the cheese into small pieces and pound it to a paste with the butter; then add the seasonings and the sherry wine. When mixed, spread on the croûtes of bread; place in the oven until hot through and serve immediately.

CHICKEN AND PIMIENTO SANDWICHES
1 boiled chicken
1 can pimientoes (canned red peppers)
3 small pickles
6 hard-cooked eggs
3 tablespoonfuls vinegar
1 tablespoonful Worcestershire sauce
Buttered bread

Drain the pimientoes and put them through a food-chopper with the meat of the chicken, pickles, and eggs. Moisten with the oil from the pimientoes, then add the vinegar and sauce. Mix and spread on thinly sliced buttered bread and cut in diamond-shaped pieces. Sufficient for four dozen sandwiches.

If you decide to prepare and enjoy any of the above items, kindly send a picture to us at hmmweekly@substack.com.

HMM WEEKLY IS written by Tom Scocca, editor, and Joe MacCroûtes, creative director. If you enjoy Hmm Weekly, please let a friend know about it! If you're reading this because someone forwarded it to you, we invite you to sign up for a copy of your own right now. Thanks for reading, and any time you want, email us at hmmweekly@substack.com.