Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Rap Snacks

I only went in to pay for gas and then I saw these. THEY definitely caught my eye. They’re unusual, colorful and they list curious flavors.

I'm not a rap music fan. Anything past the era of  The Sugar Hill Gang, Kool Moe Dee and Grand Master Flash, I drop off of the grid. 
Nutrition Stats
Rap Snacks consists of various flavors of popcorn, potato chips , cheese puffs, fries. Of course I had to try them. I didn't concern myself with the caloric content.

I tried the Cardi B Honey Dripped Popcorn because a Facebook friend, P.P. said it was good. Also, I like Cardi B's quick wit and humor though I've never listened to her music.  After pouring the popcorn into a bowl it yielded about 2 cups of popcorn. The flavor was just the right amount of salty and sweet. It had a light yellow coloring.

 I also tried the Migos chips..  I ate them before taking a picture so obviously they too were good. ☹️ Overall, I’d say these snacks are  as good as any others. 

Flavors include jalapeño, honey, barbeque, ranch, cheese, habanero, jerk and sour cream, all mixed in a variety of  ways. The snacks retail at $1.49 / 2.75 ounces
The marketing idea of placing pictures of rappers on the bags is a great concept in more ways than one. 

Who's the brain behind this idea?

James Lindsay is the CEO of Rap Snacks. After working for other companies he decided to venture out on his own.  He'd  had numerous successful food businesses before teaming with Universal Records in a project  featuring rap artists on his snack foods.

 Lindsay began in 1994 selling  his snacks under another name through a distributor. He sold out of 800 cases in 2 hours. The snacks were 25 cents a bag. Successful, but the business plan needed tweaking. After a five year hiatus James Lindsay came back with larger bags of the snack, more flavors and a deal with Universal Records to feature their rap artists on bags of his Rap Snacks. 

You can find a list of the various rap artists and their flavors

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

I'm Not A Role Model

"I'm not a role model."
Do you remember that quote by  Charles Barkley?

In a similar vein, I'm Not a Cook.

There are those who can turn out the perfect dish on any occasion.  
Whenever asked if I can cook, I respond with, "You can eat it."
I'm basically a fast food person.
From time to time I'll have a burning desire to prepare home cooked food and try out new recipes. When I do, I try to prepare enough so that some can be portioned out and frozen for future meals.

The few times I've had guests over I make sure that what I prepare is foolproof, AND often I prepare it the day before so that in the event it's a bust, I have plenty of time to purchase a frozen entree and packaged salad from the grocery store to fill in for the mess up. 


Macaroni and Cheese.....The comfort food
I wanted the real thing. Made from scratch.  I decided I'd make individual servings using my muffin tins. That way I'd be able to freeze the single servings, heat and eat when I had a taste for it.

There is no end product or Voila' !

  • I went by memory and didn't use a recipe.
  • I didn't have enough whole milk to make the sauce. So, I tried to add Almond milk and cornstarch together to thicken the sauce. BTW-That doesn't work. The cornstarch    didn't even dissolve.
  • When I took it from the oven it was a sloppy mess.
Sooooo... It went the route of other cooking catastrophes...

The oven fried chicken thighs were delicious. I only oven fry

There are too many places that sell fried chicken for me to bother dodging Nth degree,
 hot, popping, cooking oil and maiming myself all in the name of fried chicken.

Another lesson learned in the culinary kitchen.
That's it***

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Yes, You Can Pop Popcorn in the Microwave

                           You must be careful.

There's always an internet post on "hacks." 

Hacks= Shortcuts/alternate ways to doing various things. 

 You'll need some regular popcorn, a measuring cup and a brown, flat bottomed paper bag.
 I measured about 1/4 cup of popcorn and poured it inside the bag. 
I folded the bag over a couple of times but, have since revised that.
I now fold the bag over enough times so that it will rotate freely inside the microwave. I also tape down the opening.  
 I set my timer for 2 1/2 minutes. Make sure the bag isn't touching any of the sides of the microwave and that it doesn't get stuck at any time. Otherwise, YOUR POPCORN WILL BURN. 
I've  had that happen during my experimentation. That leftover, burned smell isn't pleasant. Febreeze doesn't help.
Here you can see the bag puffed out with the popped corn. 
 What's popcorn without butter or some type of seasoning?  Without any seasoning you might as well be eating Styrofoam. But, if you're into the air popped popcorn, it's perfect.

This made about 2 cups. 

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Encore Theatre-NYOP

Name Your Own Price

There's a new performance theatre on the eastern side of Birmingham, AL. Located at 9094 Parkway E., -Rear  Birmingham, Alabama 35206.  My friend A.C. and I took in a jazz concert this past Saturday night.

Encore is located on the back of the Roebuck Plaza Shopping Center on the Parkway East side. This space was once occupied by a contemporary church and before that it was a movie theater.  The shopping center itself was built in 1957. Over the years it has undergone numerous rehabs. It's good to see the space now being revitalized as an Arts venue.

Marcus Raby (above) is in the process of securing funds and opening this theatre and art gallery in the Roebuck area. This NYOP event is just  one of many of their fundraising projects.  He (Marcus Raby)  holds many titles; Stage Director | Artistic Director of Encore Theatre | Playwright | Brand Developer | Graphic Artist
He has written and performed many plays here in the Birmingham area and elsewhere. Talking to Mr. Raby, he explained that the future of the theatre is immense with possibilities. There may be a comedian one week, a magician the next and so on. He plans to have a very diverse array of entertainment.
Famous musical greats painted by local artists are displayed in the lobby. I was told that three of the pieces have been sold. The owners of the paintings chose to allow them to continue to be displayed until the next art installment.

We were given beverage tickets at the ticket booth but, weren't told what they were for . A.C. and I thought there would be a door prize drawing at the end of the concert.😊 The tickets were for our wine. No problem. I was driving anyway.

Dwight Houston is the leader of On Purpose Band. This particular night he was performing solo.
 The musician would pause periodically after a few of his numbers and give us the  behind the scenes facts of the music profession.He stressed that it is not as glamorous as it appears.   It can be  treacherous and many young people with stars in their eyes are exploited. 

 This is where the Up Close and Personal came in.  He encouraged the education of youth toward learning a musical instrument and honing their craft.  Dreams of signing a contract for a million dollars can be risky. From the million dollars, the on stage artist must pay all of his/her 
behind-the-scenes people and they will be numerous. Much of the money is not for the singer but, song writers and other ancillary personnel the public doesn't see.Often this leaves the onstage artist with little or no money left from the million dollars.  

He, Dwight Houston, was able to get a full ride scholarship to college because of his musical skills.   Mr. Houston has been in the music industry for over 40 years. He says he hires himself out as a contract musician allowing him to access his career the way he chooses. He has traveled all over the world and enjoys his work.

Mr. Houston (click link to hear his music) also teaches.  There will be a  music clinic this summer for middle school students which is free. For more information on this, he can be contacted at: or  (205) 527-4756 or (205) 527-5462

An enjoyable evening.  Staff of Encore was very gracious and congenial. I felt very welcomed.I'll be spreading the word and will return again for future events.

That's It***