Ask Digestivo: Vanderpump Rules
I got new rules, I count 'em (I gotta tell 'em to myself)
Happy Friday! Aren’t you glad there’s a little treat waiting in your inbox, ready to help you digest the week? In any case, this week we’re offering a little of our signature Digestivo dialectic as we expound upon noted exceptions to our very own rules. Do we contradict ourselves? Do we contain multitudes? Are these the types of metaphysical debates that whet your appetite? Let us know what keeps you up at night – send us your questions, comments, concerns, and complaints at askdigestivo at gmail dot com.
I’m a long time reader who likes to think that I’ve gotten a handle on lines in the sand the two of you use to order your lives (or at least make grasp onto a semblance of control – amirite ladies?). But I’m curious: are there rules you like to break?
– Rebel Wilson
It’s true, sweet reader: we have been known to preach, and occasionally to deviate in practice. Please enjoy this honest and raw list of our
eight five simple rules, and when we like to break them.
Homemade is best: By and large the Ina doctrine holds true that putting a little extra TLC into your cooking will pay off exponentially. Case in point: stocks. With a little forethought and some help from your slow cooker or instant pot, you can easily build up a stockpile of frozen broths that will transform everyday recipes into something rich and nuanced. That being said, there are absolutely some cases where store bought really is more than fine. I (JS) signed up for a Grady’s subscription early in the pandemic and have never looked back – I experimented with making my own for months but the math never quite worked in my favor, and the bold, chocolatey flavor of Gradys’ New Orleans-style brew blows other brands out of the water. (SB: This is the kind of endorsement you can get behind, right Grady’s? Sponsor us!!!) Plus, the customer service and local delivery staff couldn’t be nicer – 11 out of 10 recommend. A few other ingredients I feel strongly are best left to the factory-made pros: ladyfingers (for tiramisu), Nilla wafers (for banana pudding), and Bjorn Qorn (for the microwave-free among us). While I (SB) continue to make daily vats of cold brew in my trusty, somewhat broken OXO rig, there is a lot to be said for the kind of store-bought product that doubles as a mental health intervention. I swear by Better than Bouillon when I haven’t had the wherewithal to make stock (and zhuzhing up canned beans), love to ride the coattails of a rotisserie chicken through a few days worth of meals, and have become dangerously fond of those weird grocery store bagged salads. I also like to leave the dumpling making to the experts who sell ‘em frozen in Chinatown.
There’s no need to (deep) fry at home: Much as we love foods that have taken a dip in hot oil, our apartments don’t exactly lend themselves to optimal frying conditions. I (JS) famously don’t have a door separating my bedroom and my kitchen, so the aromatic aftermath of frying often can sometimes leave my linens smelling like a county fair. While I (SB) have several doors between kitchen and bedroom (JS: Ok she’s Selling Sunset), my distaste for frying has led me to an enthusiastic embrace of my air-fryer-slash-toaster-oven, with mixed results. All that being said, there are a select few recipes we believe are indeed worth the deep fried hassle. Maangchi’s Korean fried chicken wings are twice fried and worth the double dip – even after a night’s rest in the fridge these gorgeous glazed girlies stay crispy. Speaking of glossy Korean delicacies, Eric Kim’s gochujang eggplant with fried scallions is another favorite. It’s no secret we’re reticent to fry eggplant – effectively a sponge for oil – and will opt for a baked shortcut wherever possible (parm, fish-fragrant), but Eric’s method yields light and tender batons with a mere half cup of scallion-scented oil. And, of course, there may be no more comforting rainy-weather snack than a hot bhajji or pakora.
Tilapia is boring: Anyone who has ever claimed to get excited about tilapia was probably lying to you and/or just being polite. But I’m (JS) low key obsessed with this recipe from Woks of Life based on Hunan-style duo jiao yu, where bland filets are steamed over sliced tofu dressed with an alchemical combination of salted chiles, soy sauce, sugar, and fermented black beans. This is steamed tilapia for everyone who is immediately turned off by the words steamed tilapia. Similarly, Priya Krishna’s aachari fish harnesses the pungent potential of Indian mango pickles to transform the humble tilapia into a spicy little number worth remaking and requiring curd rice as a side.
Capitalism is an oppressive institution inherently at odds with society’s collective flourishing. I (SB) was recently singing the pleasures of both Hot Cheetos and Taco Bell Bean Burritos. I have also been coveting a gold name-plate necklace (Mona!) and sunscreen oil. I (JS) simply cannot resist the challenge of meeting Nuts dot com’s $49 free shipping mark. We publish our material wishes every other in this very newsletter. It’s called a dialectic, people!!!
Digestivo is published every Wednesday. What can we say? Life happens! TGIF and Happy Harry Styles day to those who celebrate!!!!!!!
What would you do if – hypothetically – you had planned a trip to Portugal around a $300 direct flight purchased in February but then four days before you were supposed to go to Portugal you came down with the novel coronavirus so you had to cancel your trip (crucially, one day after your hotel’s strict five day cancelation policy) but then you decided “YOLO, lets rebook the trip” for roughly two weeks later at considerably steeper prices, but then four days before you went on the rescheduled trip your boyfriend tested positive for the novel coronavirus so you copied and pasted and then slightly edited some of your original cancelation emails to the same hotels, rental cars, and got another, more substantial, flight credit on United Airlines and the summer is fast approaching and people are putting in their requests for time off and you could rebook it but maybe it’s just not in the cards but honestly what do you think you would do?
Well “reader,” that is truly a particular predicament!!! We scarcely can imagine facing this sort of decision fatigue!!! Perhaps allow us to ask you, readers – what would YOU advise this anonymous no one to do? Sound off in the comments!!!
There’s a new nonmedical doctor in the house from NYU (“there goes the last great American dynasty”)
No such thing as a free lunch, said GrubHub, once again letting actions speak louder than words
As we find ourselves in the midst of another wave and a new variant, toxic positivity has taken on a whole new meaning. Here’s hoping that testing protocols and exposure regimens remain as clear and unambiguous as an all-cash, no-contingency offer with several back ups. Covid-19… significantly easier to find than a flat lot in the Hollywood Hills, amirite?
Your humble but also a bit snobbish co-editors were just discussing a desire to get back into the yoga game. Any recommendations for a central Brooklyn practice? We like in-studio plants and thoughtful sequencing. Believing in vaccine science is a must.