If You Prefer Red Vines To Twizzlers I Feel Bad For You, Son!

Earlier today I read a piece proposing that the Trump campaign adopt another candy other than Skittles for their political propaganda. It’s a sentiment that I wholeheartedly agree with. Skittles are Black as fuck, just as is Sprite, lemon-pepper wings, strawberry Kool-Aid, and Red Velvet cake. They have no place in Trump’s Cheetos-Land. If Skittles were a person, the Police would probably shoot them and cite a grave fear of tasting the rainbow as justification for use of deadly force. It’s also the official snack of the Black Delegation at the Race Draft.

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The piece lists a few subpar confections to replace the candied fruit stones, most of which I also agree with. Peeps are spoiled marshmallows that have been repurposed as a remedy for rabid animals and bad-ass, spoiled kids who call their parents by their first names and refer to them as “parental units.” Tootsie rolls are chunks of sugarcoated shit, infused with chewing tobacco.

But one confit that has no place on this list is Twizzlers. These luscious, velvety, fruity twists are not a member of the shitty candies fraternity. Furthermore, the author had the audacity to put Twizzlers and Red Vines together, as if they’re the same or some shit like that. That’s just straight up blasphemy. Harpo, who dis woman?!

RED VINES AND TWIZZLERS are not the same. They ARE NOT. AT ALL.

Red Vines are the ineffective, diabetic imposter of Twizzlers. They are the sacchariferous embodiment of Tyrone Biggums and Ashy Larry, combined. They should be used as eco-friendly PVC pipes in tiny homes. They are sourced from the remnants of Medusa’s tentacles, mixed with Satan’s charred skin, flavored with Pepto Bismol, and greased with Castor Oil. They’re what you give to people who are serious about kicking their smoking habit and regurgitate Steve Harvey’s dating advice.

There’s a reason why Red Vines are always on ’10 for $1′ special at Walgreen’s. Nursing homes and daycares need to buy them in bulk so that old folks and toddlers can build inedible gingerbread houses during the holiday season.

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Unlike the salt vs. sugar in your grits debate, this shit matters. Because the people who prefer Red Vines to Twizzlers are strange outliers. They should be monitored and examined for scientific purposes because they are probably a bodysnatcher or some shit. They are imposters, sent from another planet, tasked with observing and mimicking humans so that they can replicate Will Smith’s movies, and Beyonce’s dance moves in a universe far, far away.

Have you ever thought that chick you were crushing on was too good to be true? Does she like Red Vines? THEN SHE PROBABLY IS. Curious who gave you a gift card to Blockbuster Video during your company’s Secret Santa exchange? It’s probably from the guy who hordes a 10-pound bucket of sugary plastic straws on his desk next to his autographed photo of David Hasselhoff.

Those who prefer Red Vines but despise Twizzlers are the type of individuals who bring canned salmon and rice casseroles to potlucks. They’re the ones who drafted Michael Vick in the first round of their fantasy football league. These are the same crazies who thought it was a good idea to make a breakfast sandwich with grilled chicken, egg whites, and turkey bacon. They also DVR reruns of Wheel of Fortune and Who’s Line Is It Anyway.

Twizzlers are superior to Red Vines in every way imaginable. They’re available in a variety of flavors, sizes, and deliciousnesses. Yes, I made up a word, fight me. They got everything from bite-sized, strawberry, gooey delectables to a bonbon rope, made up of smaller cables, that tastes like watermelon. It’s awesome, b. It’s the confectioner’s version of puppies and unicorns. It’s the reason a dentist can afford a house in Jay-Z’s neighborhood. What else are you going to eat at the movie theater? Those wax coated cyanide tablets called Good & Plenty? Naw, fam.

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Red Vines only come in two flavors: red formaldehyde and blue plaster. They are the sole reason why kids ate asbestos chips in the 1980s. They make black licorice taste like appetizing strings of chocolate. Red Vines is what that menacing muhfuckin’ clown Pennywise used strangle his victims. It’s what Waffle House provides to their new employees during customer service training. It’s what your grandma beat you with when you picked out a weak-ass switch from the yard.

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While candy is generally bad for your health, and your wallet — like Kappa parties during Homecoming at an HBCU — there are some worth being consumed. Twizzlers is one of them. It’s Seinfeld-loving, Toyota Prius-driving, tree bark cousin, Red Vines, is not.

If you like this dried Sean John velour, seasoned with Luden’s lozenges and dipped in pool water abomination then I feel bad for you, son. I pity you the same way I pity Malia Obama’s dance moves. Or Drake’s endearing love for strippers and Rihanna. Or Ann Coulter’s entire existence. Or Meek Mills’ diss records. Because you have no idea that the candy you’re eating is nothing more than whale leather rolled into fruit-flavored pirouettes. If you enjoy gnawing on porcupine quills during the dead of winter in Alaska, then, by all means, eat some Red Vines. But you’re not doing your taste buds or your gums any favors. And don’t you dare equate them to, or say they’re better than Twizzlers. It’s your world, enjoy!

 

 

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Vegetarian Asian Take-Out, At Home

I’m proud to announce that I am officially a vegetarian. Well, almost. I haven’t eaten meat in about week, so I guess that counts for something. Truth is, since reading Jonathan Safran Foer’s Eating Animals nearly seven years ago, I’ve been failing at permanently kicking my carnivorous appetite.

Here’s a fun fact: meat is terrible. Unless of course you’re consuming naturally sourced, grass-fed, humanely raised and slaughtered animals. In that case, it’s not so bad. But for the vast majority of us (me included) we’re not. So again, meat is terrible.

Despite evidence of the many adverse health issues linked to chemically treated animal carcasses, it doesn’t change the fact that they’re so damn delicious. Not to mention extremely convenient. And while vegetarianism provides a litany of benefits, for most of us, we find the path of a plant-based diet to be flavorless.

We catapult ourselves into this green, “clean eating” lifestyle, predicated on losing weight and living right. A week later we begin to satiate our cravings for tender, blood ridden, tender juiciness with sweet, sugar-laden gooeyness, only to end up stuffing our face with a chicken’s beautifully seasoned, buttermilk fried, lifeless limb, courtesy of Purdue’s death camp. It’s tough out here for the new vegetarian.

But don’t fret. Alas, I’ve discovered (similar to Christopher Columbus’ discovery of The New World) a recipe that will help you stay on the wagon. Plus, if you’re a fan of Americanized Chinese cuisine (like I am), you’ll enjoy this more so.

Pictured below is what you’ll need:

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1 head of cauliflower (or two 10 oz. packages of cauliflower florets, because nobody has time to cut an entire head into florets)

1/2 cup coconut flour (because it has a boat load of healthy carbs and all-purpose flour is for suckas!)

2 cups Panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)

McCormick Perfect Pinch® Asian Seasoning (not pictured)

4 eggs

12 tbsp Tamari (gluten-free soy sauce)

8 tbsp brown sugar

4 tbsp rice wine vinegar

2 tbsp chili paste

2 tsp Sesame seed oil

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Cut the cauliflower into florets (or open the bag of ready-cut florets, like a boss) and place in a bowl.
  3. Combine flour and seasoning (to taste) and toss florets until fully coated.
  4. Set up a dredging station: In one bowl, add Panko and in another bowl whisk eggs. Submerge cauliflower in beaten eggs, then in Panko until fully coated. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes (or for an entire episode of Master of None on Netflix).
  6. Combine tamari, brown sugar, rice wine vinegar, chili paste and sesame seed oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Allow the chili paste to completely dissolve into the sauce.
  7. Dip baked cauliflower in sauce, and voila!

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A few notes: If you’re really craving greasy, crunchy goodness, you can try these little darlings fried. Replace step 4 with a frying method of your choice and you’re good. Also, use safflower oil (it’s healthier). Lastly, if you must have meat, make sure it’s naturally sourced as much as possible.”Not that from concentrate shit,” as Ronnie from the movie Role Models would say. Replace the cauliflower with chicken.

You can enjoy this dish alone, or if you’re really feeling fancy, over a bed of quinoa. It’s a great alternative to fried rice. (I prefer Susie’s Asian quinoa. You can find it at Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s or Fresh Market. It tastes great and is ready in only 1 minute.)

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Midnight Baking Maruaders

I never wanted to be an adult.  While other kids were striving to be older to participate in ‘grown up’ activities, I was fully content with where I was. Despite a preponderance of evidence, I didn’t accept Santa Claus as a hoax until age 9. I secretly played with action figures until I was 13.  Even when I graduated high school, I rarely exhibited a desire to indulge in adult behavior.

While most young adults spent their summer before college buzzed on wine coolers, sneaking into clubs, or planning their respective careers, I aimlessly passed time working (mostly playing golf) 16 hours a week at a country club, laboring through monotonous seasons of Madden, reading African-American literature and taking random pictures of my outdoor adventures with an antiquated SLR camera.

Though I could do without being a Toys R Us kid, I certainly didn’t want to grow up. Thus, it should serve as no surprise that I find adulthood inherently stressful. Given my maligned profession as a store manager, I frequently find myself moreso.

To cope with the stress I occasionally buy sneakers and bake. This post is dedicated to the latter. One of the my favorite ‘comfort foods’ is cornbread. It may seem odd, but if you’ve tried some prepared by a true southerner, you probably understand.

Here’s a twist on the old fashioned staple. The recipe is fairly easy, mainly because most of the ingredients are in a box. But, because that would be boring, I’ve added a few things to zest it up a bit. Pictured below are what you’ll need to get started:

af35f3c6-8405-4a7d-9c04-94ea17d10611.jpg Ingredients

1 box of Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix (because it’s cheap!)

1/2 cup of buttermilk

2 tbsp of butter

1 egg

2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese (the entire package)

Instructions

Step 1: Heat oven to 400 degrees

Step 2: Mix ingredients

Step 4: Add a teaspoon of vanilla, a splash of hot sauce and mix again

Step 5: Generously spray a 24 count mini muffin tray with coconut oil and fill each pocket about half-way

Step 6: Bake 10 to 15 minutes

Step 7: Stuff your face! (After letting them cool of course.)

Whether you’re a food anarchist or a budget-conscious foodie, these corn muffins are sure to satisfy your taste-buds. Enjoy with some chili this winter, or while destroying an unassuming adolescent in a game of Call of Duty.

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Nutritional Info

Serving Size: 1 muffin (24 servings total)

90 Calories, 5g of fat, 7g of carbs and 3g of protein