Monthly Archives: January 2014

Fresh Mangosteen

Formerly Forbidden Fruit

Formerly Forbidden Fruit

With the recent reunification of Mangoustan (thanks to the brave sacrifice of Mr. Blick), the economy of the former East Mangoustan has been thriving. Many new products have been flowing to the rest of the world, and, most importantly, it is finally possible to obtain fresh mangosteen without having to go to a bad part of town while dressed up like a zebra.

Now that the embargo has been lifted, anyone can get these magnificent mangosteens directly from the former East Mangoustan. No longer will you have to slip into the seedy underworld of mangosteen-smuggling Mangoustani disapora. You won’t need to try to put on a fake Mangoustani accent or be prepared to answer a barrage of trivia questions about obscure events in Mangoustani history. Most importantly, you can finally donate that smelly old zebra costume to the thrift store, since it’s no longer necessary for supporting your mangosteen habit.

I wonder why they only grow in Mangoustan

I wonder why they only grow in Mangoustan

The world is truly a better place now that this queen of fruits, with its thick red rind and delicious white pulp, is finally available for everyday consumption. We can only hope that there will be even more wonders appearing from the former East Mangoustan in the future.

 

 

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Kikori no Kirikabu (Lumberjack Stumps)

He's a lumberjack, and...

He’s a lumberjack, and…

Here at the Federal Bureau of Foreign Culinary Relations, our responsibilities are always increasing. What started out as a simple mission statement has grown into a mission binder. Currently, we have 38,243 different tasks, the latest of which is “protect pastel-colored woodland creatures from pipe-smoking lumberjacks.” Every time we think we’ve found some loophole to allow us to avoid carrying out our duties, our unseen taskmasters issue more detailed orders that make it impossible to shirk our duties.

No sooner had this latest mission been assigned than a frantic pink rabbit appeared at the FBFCR office. We debated for some time whether the rabbit was really pastel-colored, or if perhaps it might be bright enough to be considered neon-colored. We weren’t specifically required to assist any neon-colored woodland creatures, but after much deliberation, we grudgingly accepted the fact that this particular rabbit was indeed pastel-colored.

Once we’d definitively established the exact coloration of the rabbit, we listened to the rabbit’s story. Several times throughout the interminable jeremiad, we stopped the rabbit to get clarification. For example, we had to be sure that the person in question was actually a lumberjack, and not just some low-level bureaucrat from a logging company. We also had to be sure that the lumberjack was indeed smoking a pipe at the particular time of the alleged offense, and wasn’t just a lumberjack with a habit of smoking a pipe at certain undefined intervals.

It finally became apparent that even the most artful composition of mental acrobatics wasn’t going to give us an excuse to dismiss this report. An unquestionably pastel-colored forest-dwelling animal had reported that a lumberjack was cutting down all of the trees in the forest and was smoking a pipe the entire time. With no other choice, we slowly made our way to the scene of the alleged crime.

When we arrived, everything was exactly as reported: a beady-eyed lumberjack with a polka-dot bandana was smoking a pipe and cutting down trees. Just as we were preparing to apprehend the mustachioed malefactor, we realized that he was in fact producing chocolate-covered tree stumps. We conferred for a moment, and decided that this situation might actually fall under FBFCR mission #18,402: “Promote the chocolate-covering of all items.” On one hand, the pink rabbit probably had a point about the clear-cutting of forests. But on the other hand, chocolate. Plus, we didn’t want to hassle with actually trying to arrest a lumberjack, and especially not a lumberjack with an intimidating ring of facial hair.

In the end, the lumberjack offered us two bags of chocolate-covered tree stumps as an incentive to leave him alone. It wasn’t technically a bribe, since we were promoting chocolate-covering and haven’t yet been ordered to actually preserve forests inhabited by pastel-colored rabbits. As far as tree stumps go, they were covered with chocolate, which automatically means they were very good.

We’ve heard that chocolate-covered tree stumps can be a bit hard to find, so you’ll have to go looking around if you want to try them for yourself. I suggest keeping an eye out for frantic pink rabbits, and heading toward whatever they’re running away from.

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Lucky Me Supreme Bulalo (Artificial Bone Marrow Flavor)

For when real bone marrow is just too fancy

For when real bone marrow is just too fancy

The world is full of natural goodness: fruits, vegetables, mung beans, bone marrow. But natural things are expensive, and who has the money for that when the Federal Bureau of Foreign Culinary Relations hasn’t given you a paycheck in, well, ever. Not that I’m complaining. I mean, who wouldn’t want to be lucky enough to live a life of great peril in exchange for the occasional mung bean?

Luckily, I came across these Lucky Me Supreme Bulalo instant noodles. They’re filled with rich artificial bone marrow flavor, which was lucky, since I had a terrible craving for bone marrow. My good luck continued when I found that the preparation only required some boiling water. That was a lucky break, since my cooking utensils are still being held for ransom by the Croatian Clown Conglomerate.

After heating up the water (luckily my stove wasn’t also taken by the CCC…don’t laugh, it can happen), I checked the directions and found that I was in luck: I only had to wait 3 minutes for my giant bowl of Supreme Bulalo instant noodles. At last, I was able to enjoy the artificial goodness of artificial bone marrow flavor. Lucky me.

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