You Call It Habit, I Call It Fun.

Baked Elements. And now one of my favorite posts from Diana…>

I can be a very particular, habitual person. I have methods for eating almost anything, especially the foods that I eat regularly. Some of my food-eating habits are unusual (I know they are), funny (I think they are), or practical (okay maybe they’re not) but none have ever been deliberate. Rather, they kind of just formed, subconsciously, after days, weeks, months, and years of eating as ways to make my meals enjoyable and satisfying. Let’s face it: playing with food is fun especially when the taste isn’t. Although I don’t go so far as to build castles out of my mashed potatoes or flick peas around the plate like marbles (who even thinks of such childish things?), I still play games — less obvious, less immature games.

To be completely honest, I never thought too much about my methods, or “strategies”, until now. Although I always knew that I like to eat my peanut butter and jelly sandwiches from worst to best part — bottom crust first, then top, then sides, and finally the middle — I never realized that all of my methods have everything to do with preferences or “saving the best for last”.

Every multi-component food that can be broken down into parts will be deconstructed. I see food in terms of its anatomy, some parts of which are better than others. Bagels have a top crust, bottom crust, and a fluffy middle — I eat them in that exact sequence. Muffins have a top, composed of an edge and a center, a bottom, and a core — I start by picking off the edges, then the rest of the top, and finish with the bottom and the core. A slice of pizza has a tip, a cheese edge, and a crust — although the cheesy tip is the best part, I make an exception here. I’ll eat pizza, like most people, from the tip to the crust simply because I need the crust in order to grip the slice neatly. That’s just common sense, guys. I can’t mess with that.

While I like to deconstruct, others take food play a step further by rearranging and redistributing their food. Do you know someone who separates Oreos, removes the frosting from all but one sandwich, and piles the collected sugary creme onto that reserved cookie, thereby creating the ultimate stuffed Oreo? That person is a redistributor. How about those people who rip off the bottom half of the cupcake and place that separated cake bottom onto the top of the cupcake icing, creating a cupcake sandwich? They are rearrangers — and I like to believe that one of them, whether Amish or from Maine, tweaked and perfected that cupcake sandwich into something now known as a whoopie pie.

More muffin top-like than cookie- or cake-like, the whoopie pie is a bit gooey, a bit dry, dense enough to hold together as a sandwich, but light enough to bite into without the icing popping out from all sides. This is a cake and icing-lover’s, a cupcake rearranger’s, dream but there’s no better way to eat it than to dive right in.