Attention, locavores, omnivores, urban butchers, backyard beekeepers, cheese fanatics, and conspicuous consumers of consuming: Your chickens won’t save the world and we don’t want the life story of everything on the menu. We don't care what you eat--we just want you to lower the volume. Also, please stop talking about ramps.

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Your hosts: Snacktime, Meatball, and Julia Childless

26 Jun 10
25 Jun 10

Dear FloFab, Can I answer? Love, Meatball


Do you ever read the "Dear FloFab" in Diner’s Journal?  Some of the questions remind me that there always is a crappier person out there, waiting to poo-poo on your platter.  For example:

Q:  I have relatives who perpetually comment on their perceived costs of the entrees served by me. If it is turkey, they advise fellow guests that it must have been purchased frozen at Thanksgiving time when frozen birds are inexpensive. Ham? They advise that it was on sale at the market two weeks ago. Steak? They comment that I must have purchased marked down meat. What to do?

A:  Serve pasta.

My suggested answer would be to either not invite said rude relatives, or to possibly throw the meat in their laps followed by a glass of wine and then smearing it around a bit with the tablecloth.

Here’s another:

Q:  When my friend and I go out to eat, she invariably tries to pick the restaurant, even when she asks me where I would like to go. I would suggest a place and she would make a counter suggestion. Once I invited her out to dinner and suggested we try one restaurant, and she made reservations at an entirely different one. How do I assertively suggest a restaurant without sounding like a control freak?

A:  Your friend is the control freak. I would have a frank discussion about it and suggest that you take turns choosing the restaurant. Or, if you want to let her keep a little control, she picks two and you pick one. Just figure out a different system.

My suggested answer is to stop going out to dinner with that nutjob and go with someone who actually values your opinion and/or lets you choose half the time.   I’m positive this sort of behavior carries over into other realms of this “friendship” - and at the heart of it is your friend disrespects you.  DEALBREAKER!

I could do this all day!  More, more, more!

Meatball Dear FloFab NYT rude


"I’m a carnivore and I love eating meat, but I don’t know about meat for meat’s sake; I love a bacon T-shirt as much as the next guy, but let’s get real."

Anthony Bourdain in June 11’s New York Diet on Grubstreet (which by the way is entirely too fascinating - most people really *do* eat a lot worse than me!  Yay!)

Meatball Anthony Bourdain Shut Up Bacon


"I’ve been aware for some time of the various commercial products and recipes out there that use bacon in … let’s call them “unconventional” ways….Starting now, for however long it takes, I will be trying anything and everything with bacon or bacon flavoring that I can lay my hands on."

Shut Up Bacon Shut Up Geekdad Snacktime

24 Jun 10

Adult Juiceboxes! With Wine In Them!


What a delicious idea! I just wish they were biodegradable so I could fling my empties over my shoulder into a hedge or something. Also, WTF, no champs?

(thanks for the tip, Mr. Shopsin)

genius winetime snacktime


Seriously Bad Math

Serious Eats posted their take on the Sandra Lee/Matilda Cuomo lasagna controversy, which is: fucked up. First, they assert that Sandra insulted her mother-in-law. We saw this in none of the stories we read—only Mrs. Cuomo saying she didn’t think Sandra’s lasagna was as good as hers. Seems like if anyone was being insulting at all, it was Mrs. Cuomo, or the reporter who asked the stupid question.)

Then the writer, Leah Douglas, makes a big deal about how Mario Batali’s recipe would be cheaper. She does this by comparing three ingredients.

The typical can of Campbell’s tomato soup, according to online grocery store service Peapod, costs $1.67 for a 10-oz can, bringing the total for the recipe to $3.34. A 16-oz package of Breakstone cottage cheese costs $2.99. Bringing the total to $6.33.

If you were to, however, go off of a recipe from say, Mario Batali, you would be shopping for two 28-oz cans of whole peeled tomatoes, which Hunt’s sells for $2.00 each ($4.00 total), and 4 ounces of ricotta cheese. A 15-oz package of Polly-O ricotta cheese goes for $3.99, but your lasagna’s 4-oz portion only sets you back a little more than $1.00. So your total for Mario’s lasagna is $5.00.

That’s appalling. I went shopping on Fresh Direct, using Sandra Lee’s recipe and the Batali recipe that Douglas refers to, and the result was at least a $13 difference—and that’s without finding the Cacciacavallo cheese he calls for. See the screen shots below.



(I skipped onions and noodles that were in both recipes.)

If you aren’t into Sandra Lee, whatever. But do you homework at least. This is basically foodie fanservice.

Serious Eats Seriously Innumerate


Temple Grandin: Local, Smaller, Not Always Better


Temple Grandin, advocate for ethical slaughterhouses and “world’s most well-known autistic person" (I KNOW), had this to say about the safety of small meat processing operations:

What I get concerned about is the little local places that are not being audited. I’ve been involved in working with and training auditors for big plants and small plants…for the big plants the audits started 10 years ago, in 1999. The little plants, there was a five year delay for them. The big plants were just horrible when we first started and then when we walked into some of these little plants they were just as horrid.

and she is calling for using video as a form of transparency:

I’m at the point right now where I want to put it all on live video on the internet. I’m at the point where I want the industry to take all the mystery out of things. Some of the companies have video auditing and that’s good… but put a live feed out to the internet so anybody can look. What have we got to hide?

I’m all for it, and people should have to watch. I also think we should show broadcast executions and those who are pro-death penalty should have to watch. Also, just to continue my ranting, there should be more gun regulation, comprehensive sex education in every school, marriage for all who want it, and free, safe and legal abortion. The end.


Butchers Rants Snacktime


"Workers are imported from the Philippines or Eastern Europe, and work 12- to 16-hour days, six or seven days a week, for months at a time."

From Marion Nestle’s “Where Wild Salmon Really Comes From,” a good read if you think “wild” means “no sweatshops.”

Marion Nestle Fish Labor Issues Snacktime


Introducing Deep Stomach!

We love getting letters! Especially anonymous ones! Especially anonymous ones with scandalous import! This missive arrived today via secret spy plane. Consider it an anonymous op ed.

Why do I love Shut Up Foodies?  Because I work for a big, old farmers market.  I mean old —- one that’s been serving a metropolitan area for over a century.  Doing the basic work of a farmers market-feeding the community.

Then the bandwagon starts barelling down the street, and everybody is hopping on with no thought to the consequences. Farmers markets have been disneyfied; cleaned-up, prettied-up, touristed.  And the more the merrier, as johnny-come-lately once-a-week markets start springing up seven days a week.

What does this do to farmers?  How can they continue to work their farms when they are expected to tear from market to market?  What happens to the old, established community markets when these boutique markets spring up?  And without those old-established, community markets, the community does not get fed.  It’s back to corner stores with junky processed food.  Only the foodies get the bounty, which as the Salon article pointed out, gets more and more expensive.

So feed the rich.  Screw the poor.  That’s not fixing the food system.  It’s just another bad system.

While this is currently contrarian thinking, it is not sour grapes.  It’s serious and has serious consequences.

Deep Stomach Spy Stuff


"I do enjoy watching these women, especially Nigella. Her breasts keep staring at my eyes."

Gross comment in a thoroughly gross thread on Serious Eats about “Food Network Hotties.”

Sexism Snacktime Serious Eats