Monday, February 28, 2011 Good News and Good BBQ

Did you know vegans don't eat sugar? Well they don't. Something about animal bones being used in the refining process. Good thing my neighbor gave me two bottles of coconut nectar, because I put it in my BBQ sauce instead of the sugar. Tomato puree, mustard, vinegar, chili, paprika, red and black pepper - all sort of tasty things coming together to trick our mouths into thinking we're eating real BBQ this Thursday. The sauce is delicious, so I'm looking forward to a bangin' vegan BBQ lasagna.

If you do want to eat real meat BBQ this week head on down to Bobby Q's in Westport, CT. It's restaurant week and they've got all sorts of rockin' deals going on.

And finally the good news. We have a new band in the family, Waking Elliot! They're a kick-ass, female fronted alternative rock band. This time Metal Girl Power is Alternative Girl Power \m/ Check out their Facebook page and this video of them performing on Better Connecticut. I've never heard of Better Connecticut. I'm only slightly familiar with the concept of a better Connecticut existing outside of Fairfield County. Ba dum bum. But they're playing at The Space in Hamden, CT April 10 and I'm looking forward to being there. I hope you'll be there too! Support original music in Connecticut, yo!

Rock on!


Friday, February 25, 2011 Headbanging for Lieberman's Senate Seat!

Today I would like to announce I have assembled an exploratory committee to look into the possibility of The Headbanging Hostess running for the Senate seat being vacated by former Democrat and current Independent Joe Lieberman. As of now the committee consists of me and my bunny, if he'd come out from under the dining room table. Volunteers are welcome.

What I lack in operating budget I make up for in opinion. In the past I've tried my best to keep my food blog separate from my personal political views but, given my possible candidacy, I'm going to have to go cake-balls to the wall exercising my First Amendment rights. I was raised Democrat by two immigrant parents and switched parties during the second Clinton term. I became a Libertarian in response to my immense dislike for the War on Drugs. However, I've been realizing slowly that Libertarian philosophy isn't totally for me. As much as some of it sounds good in theory I doubt much of it would work in the real world. Hurricane Katrina was a game changer for my Libertarian leanings. They would have done less for the victims than President Bush. Absolutely inhumane in my point of view. And more recently, their opinion on Global Warming pissed me off royally. Anyone who doesn't think we need to treat our plant with more respect is an absolute moron.

I am still a HUGE fan of our Constitution. I am a FIRM believer in separation of church and state. I am a life long Atheist. Call me a Secular Humanist if you want, I don't care. I don't believe in God, Buddha, Allah, Zeus or any of the other gods from from human history. Furthermore I don't believe it's my place nor anyone else's place to tell people who they can and can't worship. Do what you like, it's a free country, but don't expect the government to promote your religion over any other. Government and religion, keep them separate! Congress should not have an opening prayer. It's ridiculous. Pray in your office if you have to! This is not a Christian nation.

I'm sure I pissed of a bunch of people with that one, but I don't care.

I believe in equal rights for everyone. I support a woman's right to choose. I'm for the end of the War on Drugs and the start of the War on White Collar Crime. I'm for individual rights and responsibility. I don't trust big business and lobbyists. I believe government should be transparent and understandable and accessible to all.

Saying that, I'm sure there's a ton of stuff I don't currently understand or even know about. I am absolutely willing to learn and try to understand any and all cluster fucks I may inherit from former elected officials.

I would also like to point out that I'm most likely the first candidate for public office to use the words "cluster fuck."

Is this a publicity stunt? No more than Linda McMahon running for office. Hey, if Eddie Murphy can do it, so can I.

Who's with me?


Thursday, February 24, 2011 Opportunity Lost

Maybe I'm starting to lose it. Yesterday in my cooking class I found myself wishing they had a vegetarian option in the culinary program. Forcing my knife through sets of chicken ribs, trying to separate the backbone from the breast, proved to be slightly more than I could handle. I did about three before my partner offered to do the rest and I returned to doing dishes in the three-bay sink.

Last week my class butchered rabbits. And since my son is a rabbit I took myself out of that equation and worked on a venison loin to avoid the lesson. My teacher didn't say anything, it wasn't even an option, he knew I wasn't about to butcher a bunny. And if he had insisted I was absolutely willing to walk out of class that day and take the F. Thankfully it didn't come to that. I had Bambi while everyone else worked on Thumper.

Yesterday, before the butchering began, we sat in the classroom planning a menu for an upcoming breakfast. Yes, next Wednesday I have to be at school at 6:00 AM to put out a breakfast buffet for our state legislators. So we sat around shooting around ideas of what to serve our elected officials.

This is where I start to get lost.

I'm a creative soul. I have made plays out of nothing, characters out of thin air, songs out of sounds and food out of thoughts. I need theme in my menu. I need something to go off, a jumping-off point, a reason for being other than "we need to make a menu and this is what we have."

My teacher loves leftovers. And I understand that in a professional kitchen food cost is key and every little bit you use and save to use later adds up to the profit you expect to make when you own a restaurant. But I don't want to own a restaurant, I want to learn to be a better cook.

So, on the blackboard, under titles like "meat" and "eggs" and "baked goods" and "vegetables" we start to plan this menu that, in my mind, has nothing to do with anything. Bacon, smoked salmon, quiche, potatoes, croissants, danish - all these things get placed in their appropriate columns. Then a 45 minute discussion of poached eggs in potato baskets. All the while I'm sitting there bored out of my gourd, without inspiration...or at least without reason to share what I find inspiring about the opportunity to cook for our state legislature.

OMG! These people make the decisions that effect all of us! They're voting to decriminalize marijuana! They fund the grant programs that help save Connecticut farmers. They effect the community college budget, the state university system budget and all sorts of other things that I can't even begin to comprehend and we're filling their tummies with an artery clogging breakfast that has little to do with the state of Connecticut.

Talk about a missed opportunity.

If I thought for a moment my idea would have been well received I would have been more than happy to share, but I knew that wasn't the case. Not once has the origin of the ingredients been a factor in my culinary education. Locavore is an unheard word in the halls of my school. And the outside world's food trends of awareness and information regarding foods organic-ness and sustainability have barely made an appearance in my classroom.

Why aren't we using Connecticut ingredients? Every little bit of food we serve our elected officials should come from our state. Eggs, bacon, potatoes...every thing we need is grown in state. And isn't this a great opportunity to show our legislators the bounty that our farmers provide for us all? I wanted to suggest a "Connecticut Muffin" with winter squash and applesauce and nutmeg, but when we got to the baked goods column it was revealed we'd be using leftovers from other classes that had been in the freezer since October.

Not exactly seasonal eating.

Opportunity lost.

I'm disappointed.


Tuesday, February 22, 2011 Experimenting Continues...

I still have half a vat of applesauce to play with. Cookies, pork chops - check out the video here! Featuring music by Girls On Bikes!

Today I made a little pizza for myself with applesauce, grapes and sharp cheddar cheese. Quite tasty, if I do say so myself. I've heard tell of people at county fairs eating apple pie and cheddar cheese, now I know why. They go together nicely. I only used a spoon of apple sauce, I could have used a tad more. And I should mention that grapes on pizza are NUCLEAR hot, maybe if I'd cut them it'd be different. But I think this goes in the win column, with a possibility of showing up in a future dinner menu. Carnival Night?

Stay Tuned...more applesauce recipes to come!


Monday, February 21, 2011 Experimenting with Girls On Bikes!

Saturday, February 19, 2011 I Just Can't Take It Anymore!

What the fuck is wrong with people?

I left the house for an hour and my stress level is through the proverbial roof! I should have known. As soon as I saw that woman standing in front of the sausage plant dressed as if she were shopping on Rodeo Drive I should have told my husband to turn the car around and take me home. Something is off in Stamford today. Something more than usual.

I'll stick to the stress hormone spiking highlights.

We go to the A&P. It's some fancy-schmancy A&P now, not the regular supermarket it was when I was a kid. It's got horrible lighting and everything is dark and mahogany, just what you want in a supermarket. Not! The prices were crazy. People think the prices at Fairway are high, well I'll take them any day because the store is at least well lit enough that I can see the prices. But this isn't about prices. This is about people.

As I stumbled my sticker shocked ass into the express lane some fat bitch walks right in front of me with a sheet cake.

"You can go ahead" I said. Knowing that she really had no intention of letting me get in line before her fat rude ass anyway. She didn't say a fucking word to me, just walked right in front of me as if I weren't even there. I actually turned around to laugh because I couldn't believe it.

"Where are we?" I said to my husband.

THEN (emphasis added) some other crazy bitch walks right up next to me. Like RIGHT (emphasis added) up next to me and put a loaf of bread on the edge of the belt.

"I'm just putting this down."

What, is it too fucking heavy for you?

Asshole accommodating me just said "No problem" and then shielded her from my view with my hair. She's standing right there in my personal space, totally blocking my husband from his rightful spot in line with me.


I commented loudly as we left "Where are we that people can be so rude?" My husband reminding me that he deals with these assholes 25 hours a week. I mean, really. Really? Really (emphasis added).

Then as we were driving out of the lot we almost got t-boned by a bitch in a red Jeep.

Can't make this shit up.

Why do I leave the house?


Thursday, February 17, 2011 Three Cheers For Spring!

Today I walked to the supermarket for the first time since probably November. Armed with my video camera and my hand-knit shopping bag I took the long route to the market, through the back end of Cummings Park.

The first sign of the park is a sort of inlet/marshy/wetland area that is usually occupied by beer drinkers and waterfowl. The Canadian geese were out in force, poking their beaks at the snow-melted ground for sustenance. Outnumbering the geese 20 to 1 was freakin' GARBAGE! The amount of garbage was obscene! I couldn't even take a picture of it, it was way too upsetting. Plastic shopping bags caught up in the reeds, tons of plastic packaging crap - who the hell is bringing their garbage to the beach?

I gotta calm down.

I saw the light at the end of Winter's asshole tunnel - crocuses! No flowers yet, but definite forward thinking on the part of them bulbs. They know it's time, they know the sun is coming out, they are good and ready for some bloomage. You go, crocuses!

Obviously, if you look at the picture, I bought tomatoes, potatoes and mushrooms at the supermarket. Call it a practice run for a possible Stuffed Night! The potato and mushroom were delicious, but the tomato left much to be desired. Maybe the stock I used in the rice was too sweet, I dunno. The "flavor profile" was off. But I was quite pleased with my first attempt at twice-baked potatoes and the mushrooms rocked even though I totally blanked on removing the stem.

Bang on, my peeps!


Wednesday, February 16, 2011 Like A Vegan...HAY!

Today The Headbanging Hostess be an illin' hostess. I stayed home from school both last night and today. Just not feeling well enough to be working in a kitchen. But the culinary mind is still at work planning the next dinner...

Vegan Night!

Pink Missile is the special guest that night and it turns out their singer is a vegan. And I am ready for the challenge of making a tasty vegan meal.

I tried to be vegan to impress a boy once. But I just ate Tofutti cuties for two weeks until I gave up when I realized I couldn't eat skittles. Gelatin. Damn vegans.


Here's the plan thus far...

Homemade Focaccia (I looked it up and vegans can have yeast)

Waldorf"ish" Salad (lettuce, apples, nuts, celery)

Zucchinetti with Garlic Wine sauce

Vegan BBQ Lasagna - This is where I let my imagination run wild. I'm going to make some egg-free pasta with some liquid smoke added. Then I'll layer it with homemade BBQ sauce, roasted peppers, BBQ beans and bechamel with (gasp!) margarine, flour and soy milk.

OMG. I sure hope it tastes good. Sounds great until the margarine. I hope the smoky flavor of the pasta and the textures of the fillings combine to make it the most BBQ-like an experience a vegan can have.

For dessert I'm thinking sorbet and cookies. The tricky part is the sugar, which vegans don't eat because animal bones are used in the refining process. So I'll be on the look out for vegan sugar.

How does that sound? If I hadn't mentioned the word vegan would you notice? Would your mouth?

Stay tuned.


Sunday, February 13, 2011 Generations of Headbangers

Last night we went down to Rack n Roll to catch ourselves some Arcane Malevolence and The Midnightmares. I also met one of the guys in The Black Noise Scam, a punk band from the New Haven area that left a great first impression on the Stamford scene. And I knew a couple of guys from Sonic Supercharger 66 from "back in the day" which is my catch all term for times not recent. One of the guys I'd gone to high school with, which is 21 years ago. Zygotes have grown to drinking age in that amount of time.

This photo is of me (21+ years ago) singing in my high school band. Riplash (or Ripplash, depending who's typing) was the coolest high school band ever. As you can see we were wind instrument free. We traded reeds for guitar picks and marching for rocking. Stage band is what they called it, and we loved every minute of it. Some of our members were also actual local rock stars. They played in bands called The Entombed, Under Siege and Atrocity - Stamford at the time had a pretty active music scene. Bands called Open Fire and Liege Lord and Impact. I wish I could remember them all.

I'd tried to be in a few bands - Psycho Bitches From Hell was the name of one band that never got off the ground - so Riplash was my only outlet to rock stardom. My teacher, who was a real life rock star having played with Menudo, was kind enough to let me sing with him at a local bar called Diamond Jim's. He was there playing drums in a band called Sister Sun, but on the break he'd pick up the guitar and we'd do "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" and I was a rock star... for a moment.

Anyway, why am I going off on this...

Last night I had the pleasure of formally meeting Pink Missile front man Danny Acedo. O. M. G. Talk about a force of nature. It was like a "celebrity sighting" moment except we were sighting each other. And, yes, we are both celebrities ;)

Overflowing with intoxicating (and possibly intoxicated) exuberance he greeted me and I returned the mutual love fest. The whole exchange reaffirming to me that I am doing the right thing and that I'm on the right path with my Headbanging Hostessing. He credited me with getting him a radio interview, I'll take the credit but I have no idea who this radio person is. LOL. I look forward to the interview where Danny will (as he demonstrated many increasingly more humorous times) talk about the local scene, talk about the bands (No Remission, Burn the Bodies, Arcane Malevolence, some band called Pink Missile) talk about The Headbanging Hostess and then he will boldly announce... I can't spoil it for you. Tune into Amish Mike to find out. I hope that's the right link. Like I said, I don't know the guy. Yet.

And, wrapping this up in a generational bow, turns out I knew Danny's brother "back in the day" because he was in Atrocity with someone who was in Riplash with me. And I was in a show with Michael Gross who was in Tremors with...Kevin Bacon.

See how we're all related?

And furthermore, the most recent band to agree to let me use their music in my videos is In It For Storms. And their guitar player's dad was my high school music teacher.

Rock on! \m/


Stay tuned for info on upcoming shows at the Rocker Room, which was called Streets "back in the day."

Friday, February 11, 2011 New Year's Resolution Follow-Up

I am proud to report I have lost 7 pounds since starting my diet! Woo friggin' hoo!

In order to get back to my "fighting weight" I need to lose 18 more, but I think I've done a good job thus far. I've cut meat out of 90% of my diet, maybe more. I'm guessing, I'm not about to do the math. But I know that's how my body loses weight. It's also better for the planet! I'm not suggesting we all give up meat, but if we all ate a little less that would ROCK! \m/

In other completely unrelated news I am very happy to announce a new band in the HH family. Girls on Bikes! They sent me an awesome song to use in my videos called "It's Debatable." The title instantly made me think "Is spring coming? It's debatable" but I have yet to decide how I'll actually use it. We're taking a few weeks off from the dinner parties so I'll have to come up with another way to showcase the song.

As always, if you or someone you know is in a kick-ass band, contact me at


Tuesday, February 8, 2011 Taking Time Off From Entertaining

As successful as it was, last weeks dinner was a bitch to pull off. Two weeks in a row we tried to do BYO Breakfast Night! But with the snow flakes and my flaky friends it took two attempts to pull it off. And I just managed to scrape up enough guests at the last possible moment.

It's happened before. Corn Flake Night was only attended by my husband and I. And Blueberry Night I remember anxiously waiting by the porch door looking for guests to enjoy the 7 courses I'd made. I actually sent my husband out to pick some people up!

In the heat of summer it was hard to get people here, I'm guessing the dead of winter is having the same effect.

So I'll take a little time off and pursue some new bands, new recipes and whateverthehellelse I want. I hope everyone is enjoying the new music from Pink Missile and The Backwater Racket, I know I am! There are still a few songs on the Arcane Malevolence CD that I have yet to rape and plunder. And I'm looking forward to meeting Jacobi Wichita in the near future. Plus The Midnightmares are in the studio and Burn the Bodies will be in the studio in the next few months!

And No Remission will be at B.B. Kings in New York City in May!

And Saturday I'm going to see The Midnightmares and Arcane Malevolence at Rack n Roll! Which brings us back to the picture at the top!

Rock on and stay tuned! \m/


Monday, February 7, 2011 Headbanging Sauce

(Originally posted on The Headbanging Hostess Facebook Page.)

I must preface this by saying this is not "Italian" sauce...meaning my husband doesn't make it this way. It's good sauce, but not what anyone's Nonni made.

Start with the oven at 425. I used half a large onion, 4 carrots, 2 celery stalks and 1 red pepper. Spray lightly with oil and roast until they start to get good color. The pepper can turn black if you want because you're taking off the skin. You can also do garlic, I didn't use it yesterday. My husband missed it, but I didn't. (He still ate two servings!) Wrap the garlic cloves in foil to roast.

Take them out of the oven when they look done, about 25 minutes, not too dark, fork tender. Put the pepper in a bowl and cover it with plastic, the steam will make it easier to remove the skin.

Now, when I was making the sauce I also had a pot of chicken stock going. A good amount of the flavor came from the stock, so you should consider making stock at the same time. Or you can buy stock and "fortify" it with some more veggies on the stovetop. Onion, carrots, celery. Mine had sweet potato, apples, rosemary, zucchini, peppers. The longer a stock cooks and reduces the better it's going to taste.

So when I emptied two cans of tomato sauce into a big spaghetti pot I used the stock to rinse all the tomato out of the cans. Don't worry about the sauce getting too thin at this point, as it cooks it will thicken. Throw all the roasted veggies in the sauce, the skinless pepper, the onion, carrots and celery. Keep it at a low heat and cover with foil, tomato sauce likes to disperse itself around the entire kitchen.

As Emeril would say, let it get happy for a bit. Then bust out your immersion blender and puree the whole lot. Add more stock to get the consistency you need/desire.

I really didn't add a lot of salt and pepper. I did use dried basil and oregano, but not in great amounts. The flavor of the roasted vegetables really shines through. This is a great way to sneak veggies into your diet. Or your kids diet :)

Rock on! \m/


Click here for an awesome Valentine's Day rantipe/foodicle in this months Alternative Control!

Saturday, February 5, 2011 Good and Dangerous

This DDelicious casserole was made possible by BYO Breakfast Night!

Hells yeah! Another perk to having your peeps bring ingredients. Leftovers! Oh yeah, baby. I had leftover potatoes, chopped onions and peppers. Someone had brought mushrooms, I still had broccoli, two kinds of cheese. Throw in a little of my culinary education and a casserole is born.

I've mentioned before, in the Corn Flake episode, I never had casserole growing up. Both my parents were immigrants, my dad from Hungary and my mom from England, so casserole wasn't something that got cooked in my house. Pigs feet, head cheese and fish stock. Those things got cooked in my house.

So this is the second casserole I've made. Not sure how cheese sauce fits into my diet. But if I keep doing the Bitty Bop I can keep the calories at bay.

I totally winged this, so the measurements are only comic relief.

A good pour of milk, a couple inches on the bottom of a sauce pan, low heat. On a small plate mush up equalish two-tablespoonish parts of butter and flour with a fork. Don't melt the butter, mush at room temp. But mush completely, like mash mush. Smoosh. Together. Completely.

In another pan sweat some onions in butter and add whateverthehellitis you're gonna add. Precook things like potatoes, the broccoli went in raw. Use your judgement. Remember, it's going to cook in the oven for 20-25 minutes. You don't want to overcook it into a bowl of mush. Season with salt, pepper and whatever your heart desires.

Back to the cheese sauce. Add the mushed up butter/flour mess to the warm milk in the pan. As it melts the milk will thicken. This is much like magic. You may want to call your neighbors over to watch. Once it's a smooth mixture add a couple handfuls of shredded cheese. I used mozzarella and smoked gouda. The smokey flavor, and the veggies, and the cheese sauce...oh my goodness, go with the smoked gouda.

Whisk the sauce into submission and then pour it in the other pan with whateverthehellitis you're putting in your casserole. Stir to get everything covered and then pour into (drum roll please) a casserole dish! Top with seasoned bread crumbs.

Bake at 325 for 20-25 minutes.

Let it rest before you serve it. And enjoy!


BYO Dinner Party - Breakfast Night!

Thursday, February 3, 2011 Corn Dog Muffin App

These little puppies were the hit of my Baking One final. And it occurred to me people might want to consume these during that Superbowl thing. So here goes -

Corn Dog Muffins

In a bowl mix...

1 ½ cups corn meal

½ cup all-purpose flour

½ teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

Then add...

1 egg, beaten

1 ½ cups well-shaken buttermilk

1 ½ sticks (6oz) melted butter

Mix until it's just incorporated. Don't over mix.

Slice up some hot dogs about pinkie width. Fill a mini-cupcake pan up with mini-cupcake liners and, using a cake decorating bag, pipe out the bottoms of the muffins. Just a drop, slightly larger than a Hershey Kiss, because you need to leave room for the hot dog and another layer of muffin mix. Push the hot dog slices into the bottom half of muffin mix, you want it to come up the sides a bit so the hot dog is not exposed. Pipe the top half of muffin mix in a circular motion around the outside of the hot dog slice ending in the center and completely covering and surrounding the slice. It sounds harder than it is. It's just a quick swirl to complete the muffin.

Bake in a 400 degree oven for about 15 minutes. You want them to be cooked and set, but you don't want them to start getting color on them. Because you're going to cook them again.

Remove them from the oven and let them cool a bit. Then remove the liner paper. Wrap a slice of bacon (raw) around the sides of the muffin and stick a skewer, or skewer a stick, through the whole thing.

This is slightly tricky business as the hot dog doesn't really want to slide down the stick. Go easy and take your time.

Bake them for 10 minutes at 400 degrees, muffin top up. The bacon will get nice and crispy and the muffin will soak in all that goodness while it's finishing baking.

Serve'em while they're hot with ketchup and mustard!

Just think - corn dog on a stick in one hand and mac n cheese lettuce wraps in the other! That's my kinda Superbowl.

Go Knicks!


Wednesday, February 2, 2011 I'm Nuts. Stir Crazy. Wonkers.

When my husband got home from work he just happened to mention the current plight of the squirrel population. Apparently they and other wildlife are starving to death because all their food is buried under snow.

So I whipped this lovely platter in a couple of minutes! For the squirrels!


My neighborhood squirrel actually buried a number of his winter stores in my garden, and come to think of it I covered it in blankets so even if there wasn't snow and it wasn't frozen solid Mr. Squirrel wouldn't be able to get to his nuts.

I'll check later and see if he ate any.

I know. I'm nuts. Stir crazy. Wonkers.

Once the snow melts I'll be fine.


Tuesday, February 1, 2011 This Month's Alternative Control

Check out this month's issue of Alternative Control for articles on music, fashion, books and this fabulous Valentine's Day meal! Plus much, much more!

Metal Girl Power! \m/


Lettuce Wrap Up The Football Season!

Would you look at this! Talk about tasty! And the perfect finger food! Romaine lettuce leaves make the perfect vessel for almost anything!

These are obviously Mac n Cheese, but I've made lettuce wraps of all kinds. Rice and beans, taco, bacon and blue cheese, bacon and WARM PEANUT BUTTER! OMG, I just drooled all over my keyboard.

I learned today that the CEO of Kraft Foods made 26 million bucks last year. Clearly she doesn't need any more of our money so I encourage you to make the mac n cheese from scratch. It's not at all difficult. The easiest way is to boil the pasta and drain it. Put it back in the same pan with a spot of butter, a splash of milk and as much shredded cheese as you can stand. Start with a small amount and add more as you go. The heat left in the pan (and on the stove if it's electric) will melt the cheese into yumminess! Season with salt, pepper and a little cayenne, spoon it into the lettuce leaves and sprinkle with some Italian bread crumbs.


The possibilities are endless. Shred up some cold cuts and cheese and drizzle with dressing. Bang - Italian sub! Bacon and tomato. Bang - BLT! Slice up some chicken parm! Cheeseburgers! ENDLESS I TELLS YOU!

Before I end this crazy blog post I must throw all of my weight behind a product and endorse it. Ronzoni Smart Taste Pasta! I am not paid to endorse this pasta, but I sure would like to be! It's high in fiber, which is a big part of my diet, and it doesn't have that awful gritty taste that most wheat pasta has. Two Tits Up! Great product!

I hope they're not owned by Kraft.