543: Chicken Thighs

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:00

Hi I'm Matthew. And this is and this is filled out. It's already cooked something delicious, eternal and you can't have any.

Molly 0:14

Today we're talking about chickens.

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:18

The most sensual part of the chicken. I do not know how we got started. I know.

Unknown Speaker 0:25


Matthew Amster-Burton 0:25

we won't we won't keep doing that but chicken thigh No, we're committed to it now for the rest of the episode. You

Molly 0:30

know, I love that. I love that we haven't found you know how with meat we find other words like you know, like, cow meat is beef. cow meat is beef pig meat is poor pig meat is pork chicken is just chicken. Yeah, I needed that. We haven't found another word for the thigh that

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:47

feels less. Like I mean, we also have the chicken breast.

Molly 0:51

That's true. It's interesting. Whereas like with with, like, we have pigs trotters? Yeah, like nobody would ever say like, Hey, it's pigs feet. Instead trotters?

Matthew Amster-Burton 1:00

Well I mean people do eat pigs feed called pigs feet. That's true. But also we have like we have pork butt which is not like not but no

Molly 1:08

shoulder. Yeah.

Matthew Amster-Burton 1:10

This is so words. Words are weird.

Molly 1:13

Okay, so this is our chicken thighs episode and like last week's episode about underappreciated cookbooks. This one was also suggested by listener Chloe Yeah,

Matthew Amster-Burton 1:22

listener Chloe. Topic. suggester in chief, apparently Yeah, thank you.

Molly 1:26

Okay, Matthew, I'm going to start out on memory lane, please

Unknown Speaker 1:29

do you know,

Molly 1:31

I don't remember my parents ever making chicken size on their own when I was a kid. I remember either my dad what

Matthew Amster-Burton 1:40

would you say on their own? You mean like just the two of them for like a romantic evening, of course.

Molly 1:46

Yeah, no, I remember my dad roasting whole chickens, of which I would only want the breast meat. And then I remember of course, my parents both cooking boneless, skinless chicken breasts.

Matthew Amster-Burton 1:57

I'm really glad you mentioned this because I've got some statistics related to this topic later in the episode. Okay.

Molly 2:03

I remember knowing as a child that my mom liked dark meat better than white meat. Particularly like specific to Turkey. But I think I knew this about chicken too. But all this to say I did not want to eat like the the dark meat the the thigh or the drumstick so much as a kid. I was a breast meat person.

Matthew Amster-Burton 2:25

Yeah, same here I was I thought that white meat chicken was like the good chicken kid. And that was sort of like the dogma of the time that somehow like seeped into my young brain. And I just, you know, preferred it as a kid when my mom would make roast chicken. And then once I started cooking, that's I think when I started preferring dark meat, although I do remember cooking a lot of boneless, skinless chicken breasts in the 90s. I did too. Yeah, I did too. And that at some point found like I just like, thought that dark meat was tastier and harder to screw up when cooking. Do you remember

Molly 2:57

me mentioning the meat guy who had come around with meat in his car like frozen meat?

Matthew Amster-Burton 3:02

I do. And it still it still sounds like the premise of like a gritty HBO drama.

Molly 3:08

Yeah. Well, so there was there was the meat guy who, when I was growing up in Oklahoma, I think when I was in high school, this guy would drive around with like coolers of what he sold to us as like really like a high end meat. I don't know what the hell that meant at the time. Did

Matthew Amster-Burton 3:23

this guy have like any credentials?

Molly 3:25

I have? No, you know, I think I think it was a bad. I think the equivalent of like being a Cutco salesman. Yeah. Like, I'm sure that it was some sort of like MLM, right?

Matthew Amster-Burton 3:35

Yes. But I feel like I would ask more questions about meat than like the knife like, okay, you know, it cuts or it doesn't, right?

Molly 3:44

Yes. Anyway, I do remember one of the things that he sold that we always bought a ton of were individually frozen and vacuum sealed. boneless, skinless chicken. Yeah, I

Matthew Amster-Burton 3:55

think I think in the industry that's called IVF it stuff.

Molly 4:01

Okay, all right. Go on Matthew.

Matthew Amster-Burton 4:03

Oh, no, I'm sorry. I interrupted your your story. Oh, no, no guy anyway, but

Molly 4:07

I don't remember my parents ever buying chicken sighs it was like so much boneless, skinless chicken breast. And I think that I also was never drawn to choosing thigh meat in any kind of poultry. Because I think that it was too flavorful for me. Yeah, I get that. Yeah. Yeah. Okay. All right, Matthew, what are you going to tell me about the various meats.

Matthew Amster-Burton 4:32

Okay, so I want to talk a little bit about white meat versus dark meat chicken history. I can't wait. And this mostly comes from a 2011 article from slate that we'll link to in the show notes that delve deep into the white meat dark meat dichotomy. And as you would expect the the American preference for white meat chicken, which is still with us to this day, although it's not as strong as it was at its peak has to do with low fat dogma and the Like a chicken breast is like the lowest fat part of the chicken, and that this will be better for you somehow. This is not true. It is it is true that it is lower fat is not true that there's any evidence that one part of the chicken is better or worse for you than another part of the chicken. So according to visit from the Slate article, According to William Rennick, which I'm hoping I'm pronouncing his name correctly, because it's ROV and igk, which is pretty cool name spelling. Senior Vice President of the National Chicken Council Americans say that they choose white chicken meat by two to one margin mainly for health reasons. A quick Google search or flip through a fitness magazine yields advice condemning fatty legs in favor of the lean breast. Wow. Yeah, of course this was in 2011 Things have changed somewhat since then, it seems although I had like a hard time finding hard data data on like the prep consumer preference trends. But it does seem like that the that like the assumption that white meat chicken is always better has faded a little bit you mean better like health pie? Or is that like, you know, the one you would obviously choose? Like, at some point, McDonald's like chicken mcnuggets went from like, a mix of dark and white meat to all white meat. And like it was just assumed that like every consumer would would like recognize it like this made it a better nugget. And I think I don't think that's like quite as obvious today that like you would you would necessarily Trump it that I don't know.

Molly 6:25

I don't know. I mean, you and I think are in kind of a bubble of people who who prefer or who give preference to flavor over quote unquote, like, health promoting Yeah. Factors in food. That said, if it's any indication, Tony Negroni has been cooking chicken thighs now for many years, and pretty much never buys chicken breasts anymore. And Tony Negroni was someone who really, for time bought into all the health and nutrition stuff. Yeah. And yeah, so so who knows?

Matthew Amster-Burton 7:04

Okay, so this, this next part, I'm gonna, like, switch the order here, what's on the agenda? So I went to the National Chicken Council, the website I didn't like show up at the headquarters, so to shame on and found some interesting data about consumer like how chicken is sold. In terms of whole birds versus parts versus processed over time. You're ready for this? I'm ready for that. So the earliest year that had data for was 1962, which was the year of the Seattle World's Fair, okay. And at that point, in that year, chicken was sold at 3% as whole birds 15% as cut up chicken parts and 2% as processed foods. Whoa,

Molly 7:42

I bet that has changed. Yeah. Wow.

Matthew Amster-Burton 7:46

And the biggest changes occurred in the 80s. When Molly and I were kids, I'm gonna pick 1985, the number stood at 29%, whole birds, 53% parts and 18% processed foods. So like, you know, in like the 70s. Like, you wouldn't have really been able to choose boneless, skinless chicken breasts, because they weren't really being produced much yet.

Molly 8:06

Hmm. Okay. Okay. So what about like recent data?

Matthew Amster-Burton 8:11

So as of 2019, which is most recent data, we are now down to 9% hole birds, 40% parts and 50% processed?

Molly 8:20

Wow, I'm a bit saddened by the processed part. But it doesn't surprise me at least given that, you know, food processing technology has exploded and convenience foods and things like that. I mean, of course, we're turning a lot of chicken into various processed

Unknown Speaker 8:38

food products. Yes, yes, we are. Yes. Wow.

Molly 8:42

This is wow. It's it's

Matthew Amster-Burton 8:44

even mentioned dinosaur shaped nuggets. Oh, great. Here we go. Um, no, no, I'm not going to talk in particular about that. So as soon as you start cutting up most of the chickens into parts and selling the best parts and also convincing people that the white meat that the chicken breast is the best part, then you have a problem? Well,

Molly 9:01

yeah, I mean, it's like it's like I think about this whenever I see lamb chops on a menu, like what's going on with the rest of the Lamb.

Matthew Amster-Burton 9:09

Oh, man, lamb shoulder is so good. Like, I don't buy it off him and every time I get lamb shoulder like a great meal, but we had this issue where like, American consumers wanted like an unlimited amount of chicken breasts and kind of couldn't care less about the rest of the chicken. And so we needed to find a market for exporting the dark meat. And the US exports a lot of chicken parts like we still like export a lot of of chicken feet to East Asia where they're very popular, but the market that we found for our chicken legs, the thighs and drumsticks was Russia. Only and you know, I did not realize we were going to be talking a bunch about Russia in this episode. But when was this we're talking about like a different moment in time. We no longer export a large amount of chicken to Russia. This was like 1991

Molly 9:55

So this was on the heels of like the Soviet Union was just

Matthew Amster-Burton 10:00

collapse. So, so wait before that Russia was not a partner that we traded with, but then all of a sudden, like, you know, they're all came down down. Like they're gonna have capitalism in Russia and like we're like, Hmm, maybe they would be interested in all of our chicken legs. And so the US started exporting chicken legs to Russia where they were for a long time and the I found may still be called among old timers called Bush legs after President George HW Bush. Wow, it by 1995 The US was exporting exporting 1.5 billion pounds of chicken legs to Russia. And that like dropped off little by little to to the point where like, we were not exporting stuff to Russia in the current moment.

Molly 10:41

Yeah. Wow. Okay, that is fascinating. Interesting.

Matthew Amster-Burton 10:47

Here's my evidence that people are maybe coming around on chicken thighs and dark meat chicken. Okay. For a while now, the most popular part of the chicken has been the chicken wing, because they're tasty. When did that happen? That happened in like the 2000s. Okay, it started starting in the, like, the first decade of this century.

Molly 11:07

Okay, so So Wow, it's so interesting. I'm sorry. Maybe I'm overstating the interestingness of this but I find it fascinating. The way that different cuts Yes, same relatively small animal are either like wildly popular or wildly unpopular like that, that we have this many opinions about chicken. Yes.

Matthew Amster-Burton 11:29

So and it's because like, you know, Buffalo Wild Wings Wingstop like every bar started serving wings, like I think in the 2010s like Domino's Pizza started starting making wings available for delivery. And so, what that led to was like, you know, an explosion in the market for chicken wings. And in during the pandemic, a chicken wing shortage because of various issues coming together that we can like sort of euphemized, as, as supply chain issues, okay. And because of that, the the popular chain Wingstop launched the thigh stop brand. I had in a CNN article at the time, the journalist wrote, quote, convincing Americans to get excited about thighs might not be easy. There's not a big market for it. Morrison said, thighs just don't get the appreciation they deserve. Well, they do in my book, they do in my book, too. I mean, guys, generally, so they're not. Yeah, I do. Yeah, I do. I do like that. It's, it's like, it's not clear, like how successful this was, but this was a whole brand. Yeah. It's not like a separate store. But it's like, you know, you need to think about our business because like, now we're calling it thigh stop for a short time. The whole business. Well, it started depends what you be like they didn't they didn't go out and like change the sides on the stores.

Molly 12:45

Okay. Okay. Okay. But they just take thighs and kind of smush them into the shape of wings.

Matthew Amster-Burton 12:52

I mean, I think they sort of did because like already, like one of the most popular products on the menu was boneless wings. Yeah. And so so now they have boneless thigh bites. Okay, okay, I'm up for that. Yeah. Which I'm sure are delicious.

Molly 13:05

God, I just love thigh bites. I mean, like this is, I mean, you would never say breast bites. No, I don't like that. A wing but a wing bites. Maybe it's a wing bites,

Matthew Amster-Burton 13:16

but like a wing is already kind of bite sized breast bites.

Molly 13:19

Nobody's gonna say that. So

Matthew Amster-Burton 13:20

why do people see I mean, if that's what you're into, that's fine.

Molly 13:23

I mean, that is sexy. Thigh bite. Yes. It

Matthew Amster-Burton 13:26

sounds great. I have not tried Wingstop thigh bites. I don't think there is a Wingstop near us. Or at least not near me. I was I was thinking about like, could we like get some to eat during this episode?

Molly 13:37

You know, I remember what about wing dome? We can picture wing dome is

Matthew Amster-Burton 13:42

I think Seattle chain. Like there. There was one in the U district. Like I think it's still around wing dome. I

Molly 13:49

think there's one.

Matthew Amster-Burton 13:52

Oh, I think originally, it was a joke on Kingdom the stadium that was demolished like 20 years ago.

Molly 13:58

Ah, well, whenever I have to take my car to be worked on. I take it to a place on Greenwood. And I usually walk home or walk somewhere. Like, kill some time. I always walk by the wing dome,

Unknown Speaker 14:11

right? It's there. I

Molly 14:12

feel like it's around 80th 77th or something.

Matthew Amster-Burton 14:16

Do you how do you feel about the phrase thigh dome?

Molly 14:20

I'm trying to figure out what it might be. Yeah, me too. You know, thigh dome. Is it like another word for? Is it like if you have a thigh gap that has like a really like, dome thing?

Matthew Amster-Burton 14:34

What what would that be? I don't know. Like or could could the thigh dome just be like like a round ass?

Molly 14:41

That does seem that seems better. I like that. Yeah. Oh, man. Check out check out his thigh down.

Matthew Amster-Burton 14:47

Yeah, check. Is it plural or singular? It could be either. Yeah,

Molly 14:51

I mean was does this person have a single butt cheek? I do. They you tell me Well, maybe somebody has one butt cheek that's much more appealing than the other Other in which case you're like, ooh, that guy's thigh down.

Matthew Amster-Burton 15:02

Yeah, like left left. I'm team left died. Yeah. All right. All right, so I would like to try the thigh baits maybe we can make a field trip.

Molly 15:12

I think that sounds great. We it's been way too long since we went out for wings together. It

Matthew Amster-Burton 15:17

has been too long since our last caper. Yeah, the last time we had for wings together was like Buffalo Wild Wings like, boneless. Thursday's

Molly 15:24

the 2019 Yeah, maybe. Okay. Matthew, how do you cook chicken thighs.

Matthew Amster-Burton 15:30

I cook chicken thighs all the time. First of all, like I stir fry them at least once a week like cut into cubes. And I usually buy boneless skinless sometimes bonyen If I'm going to braise them or I want to do something with the skin. But yeah, like I'll stir fry them with as a topic for rice ingredient in Akutan pod Thai yaki soba whatever.

Molly 15:51

Mm hmm, don't you so my spouse has been working on like learning to cook or improving their cooking repertoire. And one thing that they have really dialed in and claimed as their own is a recipe we originally found in the New York Times by Sarah De Gregorio. It is a recipe for pressure cooker, Chipotle, honey chicken tacos. So basically you take chicken thighs, you mix them up with chipotle and adobo honey, I can't remember what else because I no longer have to make this ash makes it you put it in your instant pot or other pressure cooker and let her rip for like no time at all. And you take two forks, shred the chicken and you have delicious meat for tacos. You know, pickled onions, whatever you want to go in there. And anyway, this is a fantastic recipe I originally learned about it from my friend Leisha, who I think might be a little bit too classy to listen to our show. Yeah, that makes sense. Um, but anyway, it's a great recipe so yeah, we'll link to it pressure cooker Chipotle honey chicken tacos by Sara De Gregorio in the New York Times. That

Matthew Amster-Burton 16:59

sounds great. Yeah, we'll link to it. I often I will like make dinner involving chicken thighs and like I have like a little too much to stir fry at one time until I have like one leftover boneless, skinless chicken thigh. Whenever that happens. I will saute it, then slice it and put it in a case of DHEA and new reminds me of like the chicken case of DHEA that I would get at Del Taco when I was in college. Just like Tilak chatter or even like a more like store brand shatter even would be perfect. Like the cheapest is like like supermarket flour tortillas. Just perfect. I love it

Molly 17:41

What else do you do with chicken pies.

Matthew Amster-Burton 17:43

They go into enchiladas which I've not made in too long and need to do. Last night teenager the show December made butter chicken from the two slivers butter, butter chicken lady recipe, which we have a little bit of leftovers and that was so good.

Molly 17:59

That recipe is fantastic. I have that on my list as well. You know Matthew, you mentioned enchiladas we tend to use chicken thighs for Chela Kulik. Yes. Although I will say that she like he lays or something that we will often buy a rotisserie chicken for Yeah, you know, and so that'll be a mixture of of white meat and dark meat ultimately, and the Chela kilos, but if I'm just going to buy raw chicken to cook for Chela kilos. It's going to be boneless, skinless thighs, and I'm just going to like roast it with some salt and pepper. And

Matthew Amster-Burton 18:34

yeah, I feel like I should say at this point, I don't dislike chicken breasts. I feel like I'm thinking back of what I was saying. I feel like maybe we were like dissing people like chicken breast and that was not my intention at all.

Molly 18:45

No, I I have very fond memories of the boneless skinless chicken breasts that that we used to get from the meat man, because we would marinate them in I don't even remember what but they were always rising. Now I feel like it was maybe more of like soy sauce kind of situation. In college. I would marinate them in like Stubbs barbecue.

Matthew Amster-Burton 19:07

You were marinating in college,

Molly 19:09

my senior year, okay, I lived in an apartment on campus. But those

Matthew Amster-Burton 19:13

confidence that throughout my college career well at least when I was like living on campus, I never marinated

Molly 19:20

I think I did because I really was trying to save money and and cook a lot masturbated maybe once every once or twice. Anyway, what I was going to say is that the boneless skinless chicken breasts that that I grew up learning how to cook we would always cook in a little skillet like a little six inch skillet, you know, like you do like if my parents would like cook me one chicken breast before they were going out to dinner. Yeah thing. And I have such fond memories of like how moist and delicious and perfectly browned. This was from whatever it had been marinated in. So I got nothing really against it. It's just for instance, hold on, man. Yes. The next thing I was going to mention as far as what I use chicken thighs for is something that I don't like to use breast meat for. So I'm going to talk about Yeah, so it's just a simple chicken and rice soup it almost turns into like a joke kind of situation because I like to cook it until the rice really falls apart. But it's just a simple chicken and rice soup with a lot of chopped up carrot in it and you finish it with a lot of lemon juice. And I have a couple of times made it or like

Matthew Amster-Burton 20:33

an avocado lemon. Oh, oh that egg in it. Yes,

Molly 20:38

it does. But I have made it a couple of times with chicken breasts. Maybe I don't because that was what we had around. And it is so not as flavorful like you need because you're you're cooking the chicken meat in chicken style with the rice and you really need the fat and that like just extra flavor of thighs to make the soup taste good.

Matthew Amster-Burton 21:01

Yeah, I was thinking like a counter example of like could I think of a recipe where like chicken breast really is the way to go all the time. And it's chicken marsala which I haven't made in a long time and I feel like I would like to Pound the chicken Yes, I Pound the chicken and like you you know you got to like get it gets a nice color on it when you saute it and you're gonna be eating it with a knife and fork and like you could use a chicken thigh for that but it just wouldn't be right and the sauce is already very rich and flavorful.

Molly 21:29

Well and also whenever I am doing like chicken that is breaded with panko and then pan fried salutely yeah always using breast either buying cutlets or buying the breast and breaking it down into into cutlets. But this is an episode Matthew up ever

Matthew Amster-Burton 21:45

thought. Did you ever break anything down into cutlets in college?

Molly 21:48

Hmm. I wanted to Yeah, it was hard. Hard to find the right. The right choice.

Matthew Amster-Burton 21:54

The right color partner. Yeah. Okay, um, I feel like I had one other Okay,

Molly 21:59

I have one other Yeah, go ahead. I'll do mine. Okay, so in semi Nosrat, book salt, fat acid heat, which I think probably most of our listeners have. There is a recipe called conveyor belt chicken. And it is it's just a narrative recipe it's not actually broken down into like a list of ingredients. But the gist of it is that she I think she was once coming home from somewhere with a friend and she had like chicken thighs in the fruit in the fridge and they were both really hungry. And so she got a cast iron skillet really hot and seasoned these chicken thighs well and then put them in this hot skillet and put a weight on top of them. So I think you know either another cast iron skillet or like a big tomato can covered in aluminum foil or brick. Yeah, so that the fat would render and make the like the like more crispy bits you know on the on the chicken thighs. And anyway, she describes it she calls it conveyor belt chicken because it was so delicious that she just felt like she could lie down at the end of a conveyor belt with this stuff and like just take it all in. That said my stove is not ever going to give me good conveyor belt chicken thighs Yeah, it's just not my chicken my stoves not going to do it for me. But I aspire to make that recipe the way that Sameen makes it sound

Matthew Amster-Burton 23:19

maybe like if you're if you're like on vacation in a place with a with a hot stove sometimes and an exhaust fan and an exhaust fan Yeah, yeah, maybe maybe just like dropped by a neighbor's house.

Molly 23:30

Yeah, let's see labor notice.

Matthew Amster-Burton 23:33

I was like coming to the door like can I borrow a cup of sugar but like no, I've got these chicken thighs Can I can I ruin your kitchen but you're just gonna break in that's what I'm all you'll leave behind is in a row.

Molly 23:43

Well our next door neighbors now have one of those like keyless entry things with the code and I know what the code was at least as of a week ago because I was feeding their cats okay so and they have they have like a newly renovated kitchen which I don't think I'll ever have in this life

Matthew Amster-Burton 23:57

I am what is that code let's let's read it out anyway you know, you know like, like in home alone like the Wet Bandits their their calling card was I haven't seen home alone since it came out well okay, so So the Wet Bandits when they break into your house, they leave they turn the tap on when they leave so like floods your house and that's their calling card, because they're jerks. Oh, prank. So my I'm gonna be the opposite. Like, you know how like when you're trying to sell your house you bake fresh bread? Yeah, I'm gonna I'm gonna be the bandit who break breaks in like, I will steal your stuff, but I'm also gonna like put in a nice loaf of sourdough. Before I before I leave,

Molly 24:39

okay. Okay.

Matthew Amster-Burton 24:41

Matthew, and you're not gonna know how to feel right? Because like I stole your necklace. Yeah,

Molly 24:45

you're gonna feel really grateful and at the same time really upset you're gonna

Matthew Amster-Burton 24:51

be like sitting down with the cops giving the police report like all sharing this this beautiful, rustic sour dough.

Molly 24:57

Matthew, is there anything else that you want to say? About the chicken thighs one

Matthew Amster-Burton 25:02

more, which is a recipe that I'm planning to make tonight that I got from YouTube. Yes. YouTube channel ID this channel is called chefs lab. Oh, I think I think I've mentioned it before if you just Google chefs lab Oh, la Bo, dot Google YouTube search, or Google? I don't know. I don't know how the internet works. Can you tell me now tech? Um, it is the I may have even done it as of now. But wow. Anyway, the host of the channel is is a Japanese Australian chef. He's, he's from Japan lives in Australia. And does like just kind of, you know, the best recipe style versions of of like Japanese home cooking. And this recipe started as a pork rice bowl dish like a buta dawn or pork on rice. And I did not have pork belly on hand. So I was like, I'm just gonna make this dish with chicken thighs and how bad could it be. And it's become like an absolute family favorite. I did make it with pork at one point, and we're like, this is good, but like the chicken thigh version we think is better. And so I will I will link to the recipe and all you have to do is substitute an equal amount of chicken thighs for the pork, okay, and what makes it special is, first of all, it's got like a lot of kombu in it for that you like stew in there and pull out just for to add tons of umami, but it's got grated onion. And so you're like cooking down this this sauce with like soy sauce, and, and sakeI and mirin and a lot of grated onion. And it gives it this texture that like ordinarily I feel like I kind of don't like that graded onion texture but it's just perfect for this and just like soaks into the rice. It's just a wonderful dish. And I am going to make it tonight.

Molly 26:45

Okay, fun. Matthew. Shall we do segments?

Matthew Amster-Burton 26:48

Yes, let us I will read this spilled mail

this is from listeners. Oh har who asks, When we were kids, my brothers and I would love to eat pasta with a bunch of cottage cheese and ketchup as the sauce. To this day. I find this a great comfort food that makes me feel good. What are some childhood foods that might seem unusual or eccentric that you still eat? Is there something your children introduce to you?

Molly 27:15

First of all listeners. Oh Ha. I love that you ate pasta with cottage cheese and ketchup because I went through a period in college where I discovered that I really loved like hot rice with cottage cheese like full fat cottage cheese stirred into it. Okay the cottage cheese a bear with me. I know this sounds the sounds not not up your alley, Matthew. But the cottage cheese while it doesn't you know, like melt the same way other cheeses do. It almost did get a little stringy quality. And with the toasty, nutty flavor. I mean I'm like salivating thinking about it. It was so good. Especially good with brown rice because that's extra like nutty and toasty. Oh man. I haven't thought about that in ages. Yeah, no,

Matthew Amster-Burton 28:02

I totally get the idea like the dish you described listeners Oh, hard. Like is is a nightmare for me. But I get I get why it works for you. And I'm happy. Go on Matthew, what other ones do you have? Okay, so I've got I've got a couple this one this one is one that I still do occasionally, although not very often, which is that when I was a kid my mom used to make us three boys top ramen with no liquid and half the seasoning packet which was like a like an alternate method that was on the package. Yeah, yeah. And I think I think it was probably done back then for like health reasons of one kind or another. But also also to avoid like spilling. Like, you know, boys spilling spilling soup all over the house

Molly 28:43

is this because you were eating them out of the the styrofoam cup.

Matthew Amster-Burton 28:47

This was the the kind that comes in a plastic sleeve. Yeah. And so she would she would break the noodles in half so it would be easier to eat, boil them, drain them, and then toss with half half the soft pack and serve in a bowl.

Molly 29:00

You know ash grew up. I'm so glad we have this question. So ash grew up eating ramen. I'm not sure what brand but it was always the original flavor Sure, eating ramen with their dad instant ramen that they would boil as usual. Put the whole seasoning packet in. But the thing is that they would also stir in not even a beaten egg they would just crack an egg into it short it so that it would have a egg sort of you know, cooked throughout it. And ash still does this all the time and eats it straight out. Good. Like a small saucepan. Yeah,

Matthew Amster-Burton 29:33

we always have like Top Ramen style ramen packs on hand.

Molly 29:37

We buy ramen by the key sure online and just keep it in the laundry room. And like we have a lot of ramen in the house.

Matthew Amster-Burton 29:44

Yeah, so I will so I will sometimes do like total like Judy Amster style, just half the half the seasoning packet lately I still do that. That tick tock ramen that like the Indonesian influenced one. I don't know that one. Oh, it's you. You boil and drain the doodles and They need hospital like red chili, brown sugar, soy sauce, they like cook an egg and like, like mix that through. It's really good.

Molly 30:09

Ooh, I'm trying to think of other things. Let's see, just a minute. Let me just think for a second.

Matthew Amster-Burton 30:15

Well, let me tell my other one. While you're thinking, this is still not something that I've ever, like, done exactly the same way as an adult. But how just like the fondest memories of eating as a kid have like that experience of like going over to a friend's house, and being like, wowed by something that your friend's parents make. Even though in retrospect, it's like the simplest thing in the world. And I know I've talked about this on the show before of like, going over to my friend Ben's house. And like the two things I remember they are food wise, where they always had cool a Tropical Punch in the fridge and we could like just have have some Tropical Punch anytime. Just so good. And that his mom would always make spaghetti when I came over. And I'm sure it was a jar of Ragu ground beef. And just regular like, like storebrand or like ronzoni Spaghetti cooked really identity. And like just that combination.

Molly 31:03

You mean like extra to the tooth or? Oh, so extra crunchy?

Matthew Amster-Burton 31:08

Yeah. Oh, wow. That's just how she liked it and how Ben liked it. And like, you know, I think the first time I had I was probably like, like, surprised and then, you know, got to really look forward to it every time I went over to Oh, and I feel like I kind of want to make that for dinner and see like, I I'm sure like the tomato sauce won't be exactly the same, but like, I wouldn't do this.

Molly 31:29

I do wonder though if it's one of those things where it tastes extra good because somebody else made it for you. I'm sure yes, God you know, whenever my mom makes a salad, I just feel like it just tastes extra good. I don't know what why I think of salad salad is not something that I like get off on but

Matthew Amster-Burton 31:47

I do like okay, I do get off on salad but like I don't like an idea at all anyway.

Molly 31:54

No, I other things I'm thinking of you know, I really miss when my dad used to make an omelet for me. My dad was the household omelet maker. And I never I've never learned how to make an omelet. I haven't been interested in it, but I missed my dad's omelets

Matthew Amster-Burton 32:10

are you are you a member of an HOA household omelette Association?

Molly 32:17

You know, I'm not thinking of another comfort food or another childhood food at this moment, although I do think this doesn't seem eccentric or unusual. But my mom always made my mom frequently made me tuna salad using like chicken of the sea or Bumblebee brand chicken. I mean tuna. So yeah, tuna salad with just canned tuna. What we knew is Hellman's mayonnaise or best foods. And then she would put chopped celery in it, which I know is like totally normal. And almost no tuna salad has ever tasted as good to me as like being a kid eating my mom's tuna salad with celery.

Matthew Amster-Burton 32:57

There's so many like normal foods that I can't handle. Oh, frustrating.

Molly 33:03

That is frustrating. I'll never share my my tuna salad with

Matthew Amster-Burton 33:07

you. Yeah, I do still. This is not like a special technique of any kind. But I do still always think of grilled cheese sandwiches as surprised cheese sandwiches because that's what my mom called them.

Molly 33:17

Yes. Yeah, that's the best. Matthew it's my week to do it now but wow. Oh, yes.

Okay, so about a month ago now at least God maybe six weeks ago, a book came out called Time is a mother by ocean Wang, who will his most recent book was a novel earth we're briefly gorgeous. But before that he was always known as a poet. And time is a mother is a book of poetry. However, I think this book is going to be a book of poetry that even non poetry readers are going to pick up because ocean Wong is a genius,

Matthew Amster-Burton 33:57

non poetry readers,

Molly 33:59

huh? Who could that be? Who could I be talking about? Are

Matthew Amster-Burton 34:02

you Why are you looking directly into my soul that way?

Molly 34:05

Anyway, this book is going to be fantastic. It's the first book that that ocean Wong has put out since his mother died. And anyway, it's just gonna be brilliant. I think we're all lucky to live on the Earth at the same time as ocean Wong and to see what he is making in real time. And so yeah, pick up a copy of time is a mother by ocean Vonk

Matthew Amster-Burton 34:26

I love I love the title and can be like read at least two ways but oh,

Molly 34:32

yeah, no, there's a there's like a read of it. That's so sassy. Yes, exactly. Anyway, I should say I'm talking about it hypothetically, because when we're recording this the book is coming out actually tomorrow. Okay, so but by the time you hear this, it will have been out for a while and maybe you will have already read it but hey, read it again. Anyway, that's time is a mother by ocean Wong.

Matthew Amster-Burton 34:54

Our producer aka like the mother of our audio is happy circuit

Molly 35:01

it sounded like you said Happy circuit teller. Happy Mother's Day.

Matthew Amster-Burton 35:06

Happy success rate. Is it like what

Molly 35:10

is the month that this is airing? Oh, yeah.

Matthew Amster-Burton 35:13

So yeah, Happy belated Mother's Day.

Molly 35:16

Thanks for birthing our audio happy. Okay, you can rate and review us wherever you get your podcasts and

Matthew Amster-Burton 35:23

you can hang out with other people who like the show at reddit.com/are/everything Spilled Milk where you can like weigh in on like, what are what are the kid foods that still are part of your repertoire today? Or like what's what's up? What are we supposed to buy lump five thyme?

Molly 35:41

Yeah, okay. All right. Well, thank you for listening to spilled milk.

Matthew Amster-Burton 35:47

The show that has been getting cut up into smaller and smaller pieces since the 80s in Mali, wizened Berry and I'm Matthew Amster-Burton. Take it away, Matthew.