Away From Keyboard

I’m outta here for the rest of the day (it has to do with planes and etc), so while I’m away, something for you to ponder:

What are two great tastes that taste great together?

If you wish to approach this as an existential question rather than a gustatory one, by all means, so right ahead.

79 Comments on “Away From Keyboard”

  1. Existential and gustatory: Potato chips and Fritos as a side to pizza topped with pepperoni and sausage, washed down with a concoction of root beer and orange soda. It’s dinner as mystery wrapped in enigma &etc.

  2. I simply can’t think about such things while looking at car keys in a litterbox.

    (Okay, if I try really hard, I think of the bratwurst and sauerkraut pizza from Pizza Doctors in La Crosse, Wisconsin. They brought it out as part of their experimental pizza night among all the other weird varieties – Big Mac pizza, various dessert pizzas – and my son said, ‘Wouldn’t it be weird if they had a brat pizza?’ Thirty seconds later, I kid you not, and there it was. Total coincidence, but I’m here to tell you that was the best oddball pizza I ever tried.)

  3. Serious answer:
    Beer (the real stuff, not the horse-byproduct that passes for American “beer”) and pizza (the real stuff, not home-delivery garbage); ever had a pizza made with a malted-barley-laced dough?

    Not so serious answer:
    Bacon and anything

  4. Gustatory:
    Popcorn and cherry twizzler bits.
    Chocolate and cherry anything.

    Crisp fall day and beautiful foliage.
    Sparkling new snowfall and bright blue sky.
    Scoring points on your brother in a verbal duel.

  5. Fresh olive bread topped with barbecued steak (Belted Galloway, if you want the exact breed of cattle). I had it for lunch today.

    A friend sent me a generous present of some Arm and Hammer toothpaste (in a parcel of books – I’m wondering if this is something important and USian I need to understand), so I guess I should try that in combination with the orange.

  6. Hugh57, re root beer purism: Oh, I’m with you. I’m old enough to remember roadside root beer made without high fructose corn syrup. The orange thing, in fact, goes back to one of those drive-up root beer and hot dog huts that is still in business a few blocks away from where I grew up. They sold the combination — “marketed” is way too sophisticated a term — as “Swamp Water.” I don’t know what I fell in love with first, the flavor or the name.

  7. The best one I’ve discovered is coffee & cardamom. Anyone who ever drinks their coffee with sugar, no milk, should try it at least once. Strong coffee made as normal apart from a cautious sprinkle of ground cardamom in with the grounds. Delicious. Especially on a cold winter morning, watching the aromatic steam waft off the cup. Mmm.

  8. Bourbon and chocolate. Newman’s Own Chocolate Chocolate Chip cookies dipped in knob creek bourbon (with a small splash of water). Don’t dip longer than 2 seconds. Heaven.

  9. True:

    Ever since I was a wee little kiddie, my grandfather fed me peanut butter and onion sandwiches. To this day nothing is more comforting to me.

    Also, every time I’ve encouraged a nay-sayer to try a bite the response has always ranged from a suspicious “Not bad…” to a startled “That’s good!”

  10. Whiskey and chocolate. Specifically, Jameson’s and any good dark chocolate.

    Irish breakfast tea steeped with whole cloves & stick cinnamon, and added sugar and half & half combined with a cold, snowy Sunday curled up on the sofa with a quilt and a good book.

  11. Dark chocolate and Red Wine(a good Bordeaux works best).

    And for something you wouldn’t expect…Oreos and Cheese Dip. Seriously.

  12. Peanut butter on a hot, crisp waffle. With bacon and maple syrup, of course.

    Existentially speaking…synchronicity and realization. Although Adela’s love-&-lust combo sounds pretty good, too…

  13. With John being a loyal consumer of Coca-Cola, I thought I’d share my favorite way of imbibing the drink.

    Take a nice large tumbler, line the sides at the bottom with lemon slices, add ice to the top of the lemons. Add more lemon slices to the sides of the tumbler and ice until you reach the top of the tumbler. Take a previously cooled can or bottle of Coke and pour.

    I have had anything more refreshing in all my life.

  14. Chocolate and peanut butter. This is likely a no-brainer considering how many chocolate-and-pb candies are out there, but by themselves together? Divine. Better than s’mores, in fact.

    Books and readers. (I must be all about the obvious today.)

  15. chocolate (the darker the better) and red wine (cabernet sauvignon or shiraz or a blend)

  16. Funny how what sounds good to one person is abysmal to another. Case in point: Random Michelle’s “whole cloves & stick cinnamon.” These are two things that I am horribly alergic to. Akin to “Irish breakfast tea with Drano and ground glass” for me.

    I’ve never tried whiskey and dark chocolate, two of my favorite tastes in the world- thanks for the suggestion.

  17. Yeah, I thought about it a little harder and realized that I’ll take your fine whiskey and trade a Vicodin out for that chocolate and then we’re talking.

  18. Vanilla ice cream and proper salty liquorice of the Scandinavian kind.
    It’s a long time since I’ve had that, but I remember it being very good together.

  19. Proper rye bread with slices of cold, cooked potatoes, mayonnaise, salt and pepper and a couple of tomato slices. Mmm!

  20. When I was in high school, we couldn’t get enough of nachos dipped in chocolate shakes. I’ve also had cheese flavored potato chips with peanut butter/chocolate ice cream. So I guess cold chocolate of some form and cheese is my recommendation…

  21. Strawberries and balsamic vinegar.

    Surprising, but absolutely stellar if you get the proportions right. We did a taste-test of strawberry sorbet with balsamic vs without, and balsamic won hands down.

  22. Subspace:

    “Ever since I was a wee little kiddie, my grandfather fed me peanut butter and onion sandwiches. To this day nothing is more comforting to me”

    Intriguing! Explain how you make those. Onions make drastically different flavors in food based on how they are prepared… or not. Also beef cooked in onions tastes (GREAT) different than beef cooked without onions and and onions added later.

  23. Victory and recognition.

    Survival and hope.

    Love and crazy-hot, furniture-breaking, brain-baking, full-on carnal sex.

    A lot of beer, then a hot fudge sundae. Seriously.

  24. Tribar:

    It’s exactly what it sounds like: two slices of bread, slather both sides generously with peanut butter (doing both sides helps anchor the onion) and then layer on as little or as much onion as you like. My dad eats these, too, and scatters on some small slivers, while I slice a large, whole round and slap it on there without even breaking the rings up. I don’t recommend this unless you’re as in love with onions as I am.

    Oh! I just remembered I have a photo. Can we do html here? Let’s try.

  25. Subspace:
    “Ever since I was a wee little kiddie, my grandfather fed me peanut butter and onion sandwiches. ”

    Yeah, especially with sweet Vidalia onions…yum!

    Try peanut butter with cheddar cheese and Thai chili sauce. Complex taste party.

  26. Black forest ham and dill havarti on dark rye (with mayo, onion, and tomato). Yum.

    Fresh strawberries dipped in a bit of sour cream and brown sugar.

  27. Vegemite and plum jam on toast,delicious combination of salty and sweet. Just don’t make the common American mistake of applying vegemite like it is peanut butter; just a thin smear suffices.

    In Ljubljana this year, the shop that sells produce from the Slovenian salt pans (a really interesting shop) introduced me to chocolate with salt flowers. It’s a delicious combination.

    @Nikitta: Liquorice flavoured ice-cream is fantastic!

  28. I’m thinking you’re trying to test us to bring up lexical-gustatory synesthesia, which would be pretty existential at so early in the morning without coffee. I tried but my head exploded. Car keys in cat poop? That’s existential, yes?


    How about hot freshly buttered homemade bread, toasted on the top bracket of the oven, then sprinkled with pure sugar? I can eat that forever.

  29. I seem to recall matt thinking it would be tequila and safety pins, with chutes and ladders thrown in for good measure…..

  30. Greek yoghurt and Greek Honey. Oranges and strong, black coffee (call it whichever country you like)

    Now put them in front of me on a terrace overlooking the Mediteranean at about 09:00 on a May morning.

    I suggest that covers all the bases.

  31. [Oh, ok. Fresh wholemeal bread and fresh butter. Fried fish and malt vinegar. Croissants and hot chocolate, my Christmas breakfast every year and about the only thing I insist on for the holiday.]

    But the reason I commented was to mention that a large bunch of friends and I used to play the ‘find *three* things,no two of which could pleasantly be consumed together’ game.

    Surprisingly tough. Especially if we add the advanced rules of ruling out kimchee and (for some) marmite.

  32. I don’t see it on here anywhere yet, but my favorites have always been Peanut Butter & Miracle Whip.
    But fo comfort food, I can’t beat Meatloaf and Scalloped Potatoes.

    Hmmm. I need to go see a man about a fridge…

  33. Floats made out of home-made root beer with home-made vanilla ice cream.

    (I’m very curious about the peanut butter-onion thing. Must try that…)

  34. And, regarding the PB & Onions, I’m tempted to give this a shot, though I’d probably caramelize the onions first, but that’s ’cause I think caramelized onions go with everything.

  35. Buttered toast and banana slices. Using good bread, and very ripe bananas. Wonderful taste combination.

    Mint iced tea and good bourbon.
    It’s a great drink!

  36. Steak and fried eggs. Rare steak with A-1 steak sauce and hot egg yolk on it is a marvelously rich taste. I’m getting hungry just typing this.

  37. Shrimp and chocolate.

    This happened by accident. There’s a potluck dinner I’ve been attending for 20+ years, on the Firest saturday of each month, with NASA/JPL people, Science Fiction authors, and Hollywood Special Effects people.

    One evening, the groaning table including a plate of shrimp and side-bowls of cocktail sauce and lemons; and a plate of brownies.

    Since my wife and son also carry Australian and British passports, and there was an Aussie TV ad airing, someone tried to say “Put another shrimp on the barbie” but it came out as “put another shrimp on the brownie.”

    What the heck. I grabbed a brownie, stuck a shrimp on it, chewed, and swallowed. The dozen or so people watching all said synonyms for yuccchhhh. But, I insisted, it was surprisingly good. Kind of a southern mexican shrimp mole’.

    Also, Mathematics and Physics go well together, and it by no means obvious why that is true. See, for example:

    (1) Eugene Wigner’s paper, “The unreasonable effectiveness of mathematics in the Natural Sciences” (2) Hamming’s essay “The unreasonable effectiveness of mathematics”
    (3) Jef Raskin’s reply to the two above”Effectiveness of Mathematics.”

  38. Adam R.: I agree that caramelized onions are always good, but it sort of violates the simplicity of the peanut butter and onion sandwich theory. A good deal of the comfort/delight I get from the PB&O is the two-minutes-or-less production time.

    Someone else mentioned Thai chili sauce, and it jogged my memory: when I was at work someone saw me eating a PB&O and after their initial disgust I pointed out how much they liked Thai and Vietnamese foods, both of which use peanuts and peanut butter in combination with onions. I realized that most people are hearing PB&O, wrongly mixing in a mental comparison to a PB&J and thinking “sweets and onions – blech!” If I can convince them it’s a savory food then things go better.

    I just remembered something else! Red pepper jelly and cream cheese on anything (bread, crackers, etc). Man, that red pepper jelly is brilliant.

  39. I hear you, Subspace. Most of my comfort comes from the actual cooking part, so cooking those onions is a small price to pay.

    But the more I think about this, the more it makes sense. Persian restaurants will have flatbread, slices of onion, butter and zumac as starters, so why not something as creamy as PB instead of dairy butter? Plus, if you’ve got a sweet Vidalia or Maui onion, oh yeah.

  40. I am sorry, but I do not believe that Vegemite and ANYTHING could be good. Although Vegemite and tofu has a chance, since tofu sucks the flavor out of everything else.

  41. Strawberry Jam & Cheez Whiz on Toast. YUM.

    Cheez Whiz melted with butter/margarine on freshly popped popcorn.

    … Okay, pretty much cheese and anything is good for me.

  42. Thick slices of just-picked-from-the-backyard-and-still-warm-from-the-sun tomato between two slices of lightly toasted and even lightlier buttered homemade white bread.

  43. The Hale Koa Hotel in Honolulu serves a surprisingly refreshing drink called a Banyan Cooler. The flavors? Pineapple juice and cucumber. For good measure, add a splash of vodka and some crushed ice. That was a little slice of heaven on the beach.

    For you existential types: Moonlight on new snow. Beautiful and romantic – you just can’t beat it.

  44. Hi –

    Vanilla ice cream and Styrian pumpkin seed oil (Kurbiskernöl). You have not lived until you have tried this. Don’t need much of the oil, a tablespoon on 2 large scoops will do it. An utterly refined treat…

  45. Not too late to comment, I hope. Two great tastes together: good quality chocolate truffles (Costco) and a good port wine. oh yum. I’d tried Port before, but didn’t like it. Then my favorite wine store turned me on to the combination with chocolate. Almost better than sex. Absolutely equisite.

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