The idea behind this site was born of desperation. Recently separated and paying all the household expenses for four people on my own for the first time, I really needed to stretch my food budget. Cooking with what was on hand and making every trip to the grocery store count I found that I could still create meals with a gourmet twist. I’ve always loved food and my tastes range from the simplest pleasure (Cap’n Crunch with Crunch Berries and ice cold milk) to the more exotic (seared fois gras and duck confit on a bed of wild greens or pork trotter in an herbed filo pocket topped with a poached duck egg). I fear no food (except tripe!) and I’m not afraid to experiment. I have no formal training just panache, a love of food and a good memory. I think one of the most difficult challenges I will face is trying to convey measurements that aren’t a dash of this or a handful of that.
A good friend of mine called the ability to read a recipe or menu description and understand exactly what the dish will taste like the Mind’s Mouth. I’d like to pass along the skills needed to develop your Mind’s Mouth. Knowing how certain flavors marry well together is not so hard if you pay attention to the cues around you. Everyone knows peanut butter and chocolate go together well but do they know that if you keep sundried tomatoes, garlic and kalamata olives on hand you will always be able to whip up a simple pasta dish? I often find myself picking apart the ingredients in a dish I really like to see if I can mimic it at home. Much in the way a wine snob can tell you all the nuances of a certain vintage I can pick out hints of this and that in the things I eat.
Why THE WHITE TRASH GOURMET? Is my lawn rife with old cars (blocks optional)? No. Do I do my shopping exclusively at thrift stores? Not exclusively. Do I have a double-wide? Only if we’re talking about my ass! Am I on the dole? Nah-uh. Do I have all my teeth? Why yes I do. Yet, my blood runs deep with an ancestry that includes a grandpa born in the hills of Arkansas on his momma’s kitchen table (so the story goes). I can survive outdoors, catch clean and cook a fish, and I specifically sought out a Waffle House when I traveled to Ohio. Oh, and I was raised a Baptist. I’m a little edgy, I curse like a sailor and on occasion I have a wee too much to drink. As a kid one of my favorite snacks was left over rice with sour cream and Lawry’s salt. I’m terribly messy.
My family acts as my guinea pigs along with my tolerant boyfriend (and sous chef). My daughter is easily my best critic because if she hates something she never misses a chance to tell you. 9-year-olds know their shit!
Besides recipes and cooking tips I will post occasional restaurant reviews if I find something especially tasty or horrid. And great bargains are a must! Good food stories will appear as well. Like how my grandma had me over every weekend for a month for baking lessons when I was about 8 or 9. I’m a professional writer in spirit only, so I hope you bear with me as I find my voice. Feel free to leave comments, as constructive criticism is the only way I’ll learn what works and what doesn’t.
Welcome and I hope you enjoy the ride. I know I will.
- Kim, TWTG