Do you ever crave a sandwich in which "the vinegary snap of chilled pickle cuts, like a dash of irony, against the stoic unctuousness of peanut butter"? If so, you are not alone! The New York Times published a delightful essay extolling the virtues of the "distinctive little sandwich" known as the PB&P. The writer, Dwight Garner, rhapsodizes at length about his favorite combination, while acknowledging that its sort of counter-intuitive combination of ingredients leads many people to question his palate, or even, his sanity.
Garner makes a pretty good case for at least trying a PB&P sandwich and points out that peanut butter has been one of the more versatile sandwich foundations for years, listing other unorthodox combinations like "mayonnaise, olives, thick onion slices (this was Hemingway’s favorite sandwich), horseradish, bacon, Marmite (in England) and Vegemite (in Australia)." And, of course, there was Elvis's favorite combo of "peanut butter, banana and bacon."
Reading about all these food mash-ups made me think about all the weird things that I've eaten in my life, especially the things that I only eat when I'm home alone, usually late at night, frequently when I'm in a little bit of an altered state. Some of these combinations have been put together out of financial necessity, many of them have involved Top Ramen, but all of them are delicious, if only for the reason that they were all my own inventions. Like the time that I toasted up apple cinnamon waffles, put slices of Brie on top, and then doused the whole thing with Sriracha? I was pretty sure that David Chang couldn't have come up with anything better.
And since necessity is the mother of invention, and all of us who work here in the Brooklyn Mag and L Mag offices are very needy people (well, not really, that's just me) I decided to find out what weird, delicious inventions they've all came up with in the past.
Cinnamon on Corn
"For chrissakes. Okay. Fine. Cinnamon is typically an autumn spice and corn a summer vegetable. But surprisingly they complement each other, the cinnamon taking the sweetness of the vegetable and making it more complex. It's like stepping underneath a tree to get out of the sun."
Goobers and Popcorn
"I mean, I like to eat Goobers together with popcorn at a movie theater, but that's not weird at all. And I recently heard none other than Anderson Cooper say he does the same thing."
Bacon and Maple Syrup
"Totally dunk the bacon. I have to be able to eat it with my hands."
Wasa Flatbread Crackers and Mayo and Cucumbers
"I like Wasa flatbread crackers with a thin layer of mayo and thinly sliced cucumbers. Pepper suggested
(black pepper that is). You know, there are non-mayo people. I fall in the opposite camp."
Almond Milk and Powdered Sugar
"Okay, when I was poor and living in a vegan straight edge collective, I used to heat almond milk and mix in powdered sugar for dessert."
Peanut Butter and Cheerio Sandwiches
"I used to eat peanut butter and Cheerio sandwiches growing up. For the crunch, mostly, it was the crunch that I liked. I stopped eating them because little bits of Cheerios would wind up stuck to the roof of my mouth for what felt like days even though it was more like minutes."
Cheese and Oatmeal
"I did used to put cheese into oatmeal. It's like grits. Pro-tip: it's best with those little Laughing Cow wedges that come in different flavors. Like 'garlic and herb'."
"While not as weird as my waffles, Brie, Sriracha combination, this is a drink that makes some people gag to think about. It's whiskey with a briny pickle juice chaser. And I totally love it."
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