July 30, 2007

Flash-Frozen, Fried, Flash-Frozen Again….and maybe Fried

Why not? Boardwalk food can get away with anything! J* and I visited my friend in Ocean City, NJ over the weekend, and over-indulged in all of it, as we strolled along beach shops, carnival rides, ferris wheels, and plenty of mini-golf. After driving for several hours on Friday without stopping, we were famished. My friend whisked us away to Mack and Manco’s Pizza (there are several locations on the boardwalk). Without menus, aside from what’s on the wall, we both ordered “Plain,” meaning just cheese. The slice was quite tasty; very cheesy with crispy crust, just the way I like it. The sauce was just slightly sweet. We asked for another, and the server shrugged and said “Yeah” with a little shake of his head. He was just barely mocking us, implying “That’s what I’m here for buddy.” That’s Jersey for ya.

After a disappointing experience at Coney Island, J* and I gave Ocean City a chance with funnel cakes. The Friday night cake was good (fresh and crispy), but nothing compared to the cake on Sunday night bought at a lemonade shop (Love’s maybe? 2 for $4 deal somwhere). This cake was fluffier and absolutely drenched in powdered sugar. It was sooooooo good. For a final shot of boardwalk food absurdity, J* tried the fried oreos (which are frozen before frying and covered with powdered sugar). I wasn’t a fan, but he loved the way they melted inside the fried funnel cake-like coating.

I tried a chocolate-covered banana for the first time ever, but was not thrilled, despite the fact that it was also covered in rainbow sprinkles (festive!). I passed on a Philly Cheese Steak as my friends devoured them, fearing my body would outright revolt, but they looked delicious from Del’s Beachside Grill. We also enjoyed the wonderful view over lunch from the “shack on the beach,” Sugar’s.

What a wonderful weekend of reading (on a whim, I’ve decided to read all the Harry Potter books, I read the first two on Saturday and Sunday) , eating (above), and a little bit of swimming (as I was laughing at J* for something and facing the shore, I was unexpectedly clobbered with a huge wave, almost lost my bikini and scrapped my knee on the bottom, fun fun fun!).

-Caley, amused by the number of calories this weekend but looking at salads and sushi for several weeks

May 14, 2007

Carnival Fare

Sunday afternoon and I found myself on the other side of Brooklyn at Coney Island. Since the powers that be will be soon be tearing down most of the old attractions, the long, LONG train ride from my island to Manhattan and through the better part of Brooklyn was a must. But, I’m not complaining. I had wonderful company and time to work up an appetite for artery-clogging carnival food.

Coney Island is hilariously boorish with its classic Astroland collection of rides, actual “freak shows,” and snake-adorned performers. Emerging onto the boardwalk, I immediately spotted a live-human target game called, I kid you not, “Shoot the Freak.” The poor (yet surprisingly nimble) sport was being shot at with paintballs and wore a necessary amount of multi-colored armor. People were lining up to participate and the crowd chose sides to cheer. I felt dirty just standing in the crowd and quickly moved off.

A little “grass” hut further down the boardwalk offered Daiquiris and Pina Coladas, as though Coney Island was an acceptable substitute for a tropical vacation. We humbly requested the latter from a distracted bartender, and nodded yes when she barked, “RUM?!?” Un-carded and having witnessed the liberal pour, we giggled at the staggering amount of alcohol filling up a large portion of the plastic cup. Aren’t Pina Coladas supposed to taste like pineapples and coconuts? Nonetheless, it tasted delicious about halfway through.

We moved on to bigger and better things. I wanted an elephant ear, but evidently funnel cakes are the preferred fried dough in these parts. We devoured a funnel cake on the beach that really should have been crispy but at least was completely covered in powdered sugar (as was J* with his navy-blue polo, ah what a yuppie). After a bit of walking around, I settled on a corn dog and J* ordered a “Coney” dog smothered in onions and mustard. This is the kind of awesomely disgusting food that you simply must eat in such settings. These baked Low Fat Corn Dogs are a much more reasonable way to enjoy carnival food in your own home.

We passed out on the train on the way back only to awaken and eat too much salt-water taffy compliments of Atlantic City.

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