Snacking is an art form. Unlike meals, which should be substantial and sustaining, snacks should be edible entertainment, with intense flavors, varying textures, and unexpected tasting notes. From giant pickles to waffled prosciutto, these are our favorite snack hacks of 2019.
This Green Garlic Sauce Tastes Like a Pringle
Because I am a lady of low birth and no breeding, that kinda onion-y, kinda garlicky, noticeably green flavor has always reminded me of a sour cream and onion Pringle, if that Pringle had been dipped in aioli. You can use green garlic just like you would adult garlic (soups, stews, braises, sauces), but you can also treat it much like you would a raw scallion (pesto, salads, garnishes, etc.). For my part, I like to sautÃ© the lighter parts until they are soft, then whirr them together with some blanched greens for a fresh, savory, slightly pungent sauce thatâ€™s good on almost anything. (I literally ate half a cup of it on saltines.)
Itâ€™s such a simple, obvious pairing. As a noted fan of both msg and seasoning things with ramen powder, Iâ€™m frankly shocked and appalled I havenâ€™t tried it already. Unlike most of the international fast food I have tried, itâ€™s something thatâ€™s easily replicated at home. Just order some friesâ€”or make them yourselfâ€”then sprinkle on your favorite packet of ramen powder which, if you are anything like me, you already have a collection of.
Huge zukes tend to be bland and watery, with woody seeds and cottony flesh. Cooking one is rarely a sautÃ©-and-enjoy kind of deal. At first I considered treating it like eggplantâ€”maybe making a parm or somethingâ€”but then I remembered Hamburger Stackers.
Surrounding yourself with easy to prepare and eat snacks is of the utmost importance, but those snacks should do more than provide sustenanceâ€”they should be entertainment for your mouth. Though there is nothing wrong with eating a plate of microwaved cheeseâ€”or pouring shredded cheese into your mouth directly from the bagâ€”Iâ€™ve taken the liberty of compiling a few somewhat refined stoner snacks and strategies that I think youâ€™ll enjoy.
Prosciutto crisps, which I fondly call â€œpork chips,â€ can function as a fancy snack, highfalutinâ€™ bacon bit, orâ€”in the case of one cocktail I had one timeâ€”unexpected drink garnish. Usually the paper-thin slices require at least 15 minutes in an oven to get them nice and crisp, but you can speed up the process considerably if you have a waffle maker.
What, exactly, should you add it to? Pretty much any non-dessert item that could use some umami. If you would add soy sauce to it, you can add MSG. If you would add Parmesan to it, you can add MSG. If you think â€œthis could use some fish sauce/tomato paste/nutritional yeast,â€ you can (and should) add MSG.
Honestly, Iâ€™m surprisedâ€”and a little frustratedâ€”that Taco Bell hasnâ€™t been doing this for years. They already have a Dorito tacoâ€”why not add another item to their expansive menu by loading up a pile of cheese dust-covered chips with their Nachos BellGrande toppings? Itâ€™s an easy way to add more flavor (and MSG) to an already delicious mess of food. It just makes sense. Even if Taco Bell wonâ€™t take my advice, you still can.
If youâ€™ve ever eaten too much weed, you know itâ€™s not enjoyable. Unlike smoking, the effects of an edible take a while to kick in, but then they kick in hard. This is why youâ€™re only supposed to eat a little at a time, and wait at least an hour before ingesting (or smoking) any more marijuana product. A particularly delicious edible is therefore a dangerous thing, particularly if you are prone to the munchies, or oddly confident about your tolerance. This is why you should alwaysâ€”alwaysâ€”have a cannabis-free dupe of your edible at the ready.
Marmite is the Fernet-Branca of the condiment world. Like the bitter amaro, the super salty yeast spread is extremely polarizing, and people tend to either despise it on a visceral level or love it with their whole heart. But even if you arenâ€™t one to spread Marmite on toast, you can use it to add oomph to creamy spreads and dips.
You see, when pulverized into a fine powder, salts and seasonings stick to kernels with unprecedented power. Blitzing blends into oblivionâ€”such as the spicy-sweet salt mixture you see belowâ€”means it will cling to your snack, rather than fall (tragically) to the bottom of the bowl.
Any egg, be it hard-boiled, soft-boiled, seasoned, or poached, is welcome in a bowl of ramen, but the king of the genre is ajitsuke tamago, soft-boiled eggs that have been marinated in soy sauce and other flavorful friends. Theyâ€™re often referred to as â€œramen eggs,â€ but you donâ€™t need a bowl of noodles to enjoy themâ€”they make a great breakfast (smash â€˜em on some toast), umami-packed salad topper, or simple snack.
The most commonly lacto-fermented pickles are cabbages and carrots, but a Twitter friend suggested lacto-ing some grapes, and I am now obsessed with the savory, tangy morsels, which are perfect for cheese plates. Though you can lacto-ferment grapes in a liquid brine, you can forgo all that by using a vacuum sealer, which creates a fantastic environment for our friendly bacteria.
This year Iâ€™m calling off my campaign against candy corn, and am instead trying to understand its appeal, and maybe even enjoy it. Though Lifehacker is fairly divided on the fondant-like candy, two connoisseursâ€”our managing editor Virginia Smith and deputy editor Alice Bradleyâ€”were kind enough to share their tasting notes and serving suggestions.