I like vegetables and all, but let's face it: the more they taste like meat, the better.
And when it comes to chicken wings it is the hand-to-heaven truth that they are basically just a vehicle for delicious hot sauce and blue cheese to make it into your belly.
Anytime you can get a healthy food to taste like a not-so-healthy food, you're winning. Enter cauliflower that taste like chicken wings. Even better than wings, I'd argue; there are no pesky bones or weird veins snapping back at you and no one's dying from salmonella if you don't cook it properly. Plus, cruciferous veggies are super nutritious and healthy and blah blah blah let's get to the good stuff.
In large bowl, combine hot sauce, oil, and butter.
Toss dry cauliflower florets with sauce.
On parchment lined baking sheet, spread sauced cauliflower florets evenly.
Roast at 350 for 15 minutes, checking often. I find cauliflower to sometimes cook very quickly, other times, notsomuch. Turn and dribble with additional sauce if desired.
Continue roasting until cauliflower is caramelized and cooked through - probably like another 15 minutes.
Serve drizzled with blue cheese sauce (recipe below) or on side for dipping.
Combine in a blender, or by using immersion wand, or two sticks you pulled off a tree if you are camping - the following:
I happen to think moms are f*&!ing brilliant.
Okay, full disclosure, I am one, but I know that all aspects of my life have changed since I had kids. We all laugh about "baby brain" and while it's true that often new moms are so overcome with the new 24 hr a day responsibility, this is a temporary affliction. And while you are reorganizing your brain parts into thinking like a mom - you are, I think - actually getting smarter. I know that my problem solving skills are unbelievable now and continue to only improve since I became a parent. Who else can figure out work-arounds on the fly like a mom? Who can basically negotiate with terrorists while cooking dinner and mentally planning a trampoline birthday party where six of the eight attendees still pee their pants?
Who invented outside the box thinking?
A woman with two arms, three kids, and six appointments in one afternoon. Yep; a MOM.
Now it's time to show the world, or at least a number of Canadians with access to electricity and Internet/basic cable systems.
Canada's Smartest Person airs on CBC and seeks to find, well, Canada's Smartest Person. The show features a panel of competitors, all vying for top spot as host Jessi Cruickshank takes them through their paces. Competitors are asked to solve several problems in six areas of intelligence: musical, physical, social, logical, visual, and linguistic. The strange thing is, despite being one of the largest viewer demographics of the show, most competitor applicants are not moms. I know that personally I would be leery of an intelligence testing show based on the old tired quiz show format, but that doesn't mean anything when it comes to this show because CSP is NOT a quiz show. It is NOT a "what did you retain in elementary school obscure history show," and it's not even a "you need two Masters Degrees and a photographic memory" show. In fact, season one episode three was probably one of my favourites, as competitor Lisa Preston kicked ass in round after round to beat out multiple diploma and degree holders. Lisa says despite not being a high school graduate, when she saw an advertisement for show auditions during a hockey game at a family gathering, she was in. She says she wanted to surprise herself (and others) with her intelligence. She says without multiple degrees she doesn't fit the "conventional" image of what a "smart person" may be, but as an incredibly bright woman and mom, her skills are clear (she placed a close second on her episode.)
After I learned moms don't audition, I wanted to know why they don't try out more often for these types of opportunities. I had my suspicions about terrible "just a mom" theories and I feel pretty passionately about this because, despite it being thousands of years past the stone age, the "just a mom" mentality prevails. We use "mom" as a diminutive in so many marginalizing forms ala "just mommy blogger" and it's bullshit. You are not "just" an anything.
I asked host Jessi what surprised her most about those competitors who do well, mom or no, and did the winners seem to have any similar traits? No, she said. In fact, Jessi feels that part of the shows appeal comes from the fact they don't: "That’s what is so great about this show- no two competitors are ever alike… in fact, I am constantly surprised by the vast range of people who excel on this show- we’ve had high school dropouts and stay at home moms out-smart scientists and professors. We celebrate real-world smarts, not just book smarts so it really allows all different types of Canadians to shine."
She adds, "Unlike most reality competition shows, we aren’t just looking for over-the-top personalities (although don’t get me wrong, that helps!) we are looking for real people from all walks of life with natural charisma and intelligence. So, don’t be afraid to show us who you are, why you are smart and DO something to stand out! If you can put together a memorable audition tape, we already know you’ve got social smarts!"
Did Jessi think moms needed any specific words of encouragement? After all, they're watching but not applying. "I know I am supposed to be the ‘unbiased’ host here," she says, "but I must say, I LOVE it when moms compete on our show. Not only is it amazing to see how proud their kids and spouses are cheering from the sidelines, but it gives these brilliant women a chance to shine in areas of intelligence they may not have had the opportunity to put on full display since having kids."
Couldn't agree more. The fact is, if you’re a mom, you are constantly using all six areas of intelligence. Do you juggle kids and parents and play dates daily? That requires social smarts! Can you colour co-ordinate a sock drawer? Visual Intelligence! Can you sing a lullaby in tune? Musical Intelligence! I once had a mom tell me that competing on the show was the best thing she ever did for herself- it reminded her of all she was capable of. Your kids know how smart you are, now come and show the world…. Auditions for Canada's Smartest Person are open now for next season and will remain open until July 24, 2016, so there's still time to apply.
Season 3 of Canada's Smartest Person airs this fall on CBC.
Image Source: CBC/Canada's Smartest Person
Summer camp forms great memories for many kids. Oh, did I say "memories?" I meant mammories.
The Cub Scouts of America are fielding questions this week after it was discovered that Hooters - yes; those Hooters - sponsored a day at a Cub Scout Camp in Denver, Colorado. Parents on site to collect their littles at camp's end were surprised to see several Hooters girls in and amongst the young campers, after helping out for the day with things like arts and crafts. Some parents were not very happy at all with their sponsorship program, likely being accustomed to more... conventional businesses taking part in the program. Some parents were even "outraged."
ABC News reports Michelle Kettleborough, a mom to a 7 year-old in attendance, as being "in disbelief when she picked up her son" and that she noticed he was "wearing a Hooters hat."
Kettleborough continues, "I step back for a second, and I take a look and I'm like, 'Are they wearing Hooters visors? Wait a minute,'" Kettleborough said. "Quite honestly we're questioning whether we're going to keep him in the organization at all next year."
I agree that it seems an unlikely pairing, but I've made my own laundry soap AND I married a Conservative and we lasted 11 years. Plus, have you ever tried Cheez Whiz and jam together? Seriously; it's nothing short of amazing. So sometimes unconventional works.
I have kids. I haven't ever taken them to a Hooters on purpose, but I don't think I'd be speed dialing a therapist or losing sleep over their futures if they came across a Hooter's employee in the woods. I think I'd even be okay with them making paper mache together. It's not as thought the boys were first subject to a time-share style hard sell seminar on LOLZ BIG JUGS before circle time. Transparency: I also have big boobs, so perhaps I am feeling a tad sensitive, what with all the other problems they give us. Women are more than their "parts" - unless you include brain and heart - then we are all of those and more.
Parent Marsha Corn tells ABC, "We love the Scouts, [but] we think they made a very poor choice," Corn said. "And what I would like - and what I think would go a long way, again - is some accountability."
Ahhh, accountability. The buzzword of the last several years, and one that sometimes needs to fall in a hole and be eaten by bears. Perhaps in the woods! Supervised by Hooters girls!
Perhaps I am rage-fatigued, but unless someone at camp is trying to convert or cook my child, I'm sorta okay - nay, a lot okay - with them meeting people of all stripes. And camp images show the women were dressed in Hooters clothing, but not the regular short shorts and tank tops uniform the restaurant typically requires. These women are not fools; they are adults and I also find it highly improbable that they would have turned up to serve wings and pitchers of Bud to 10 year-old boys in the summer sunshine.
Can we focus? Women who are take work willingly as adults and who are made aware of clothing requirements can - and do - take jobs as they please. The arts and crafts session at the Cub camp was not inappropriate so make it clear to me again why the outrage? I imagine that young kids, as impressionable as they are, were more impressed by Chad's awesome armpit farts than Stephanie that nice lady who made me a friendship bracelet.
Chances are the kids thought the Hooters clothing sporting signature owl branding was a hat tip to an Owl Sanctuary or something. I dunno - have you been on Pinterest since 2013? There are fucking owls all over the place. It's a veritable owl paradise on the internet right now. That's what I'm outraged about! Can we get over the whole owl trend? They're creepy and their shit has BONES in it. THAT'S JUST WEIRD.
See? Now I'm mad. Maybe I'll call up this band of irate Denver-area parents and we can rage together. Maybe even over a basket of inferno-hot boneless wingettes and a cold brew. Once there I would mention that their rage may be better channeled towards that fact that it hasn't even been a full year (July 2015) since the Boy Scouts of America allowed gay men to be troop leaders.
Image Source: WikiCommons