CULINARY THRILL SEEKING — Squirrel away those snacks

Published 6:25 am Monday, May 20, 2024

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Squirrely Shirley is what I’ve been calling our nightly visitor.

You might hear a leaf rustle as she pokes around a flowerpot, or catch movement above if she approaching from the awning. Then comes that look.

“What have you got for me tonight?”

Cute as can be, I made a platform for her with a little half brick as a step. No steps needed, she’s a leaper.

If I can get her to nibble at a raw nut from the flat piece of marble, it’s like her stage.

Hey, if I’m providing snacks, no fair if you haul them off to enjoy. I’d like to have a little cuteness show.

I’ve really come to anticipate her antics, but my husband draws the line at her hopping up onto the metal swinger while he’s sitting right there.

A little “shoo” gets her back on the ground and inquiring about the next handout.

We like our snacks, too. Our friend is careful to give squirrels on his walk unsalted, raw peanuts.

Too bad humans tend to reach for more sugary, fatty goodies. But I’ve heard of “ingredients-only households” as a term.

This means your pantry doesn’t have bags of chips and boxes of cupcakes ready to rip open and devour.

You have to work for your snacks a little, such as: open a jar of nut butter and spread some on an apple you had to cut up.

Or shred some cheese and melt it onto a tortilla. This isn’t too much extra work in my thought, but just way too difficult for some snackers. A note is that healthy options are often more expensive and less accessible to those in a food desert.

What are your snacks?

As a kid, I’d never have guessed celery and hummus would be a favorite. Hated the stuff in my youth. Popcorn is a snack, or a dinner. Fruit is the tops.

If you figure that some snacks make you healthier and others drag you down, it gets easier. Readers, share what you go to.

Here’s an example, below:

Snack Attack – I met a man eating from a beat up bag that looked bleached by sunlight as though it was in the far corner of a parking lot the past decade. I wondered if it was actually “chew” the way he was moving his jaws.

Fascinated, this foodie had to ask.

He willingly held out a hand of what looked like super-coarse sand, or cornmeal. Well, it was nearly cornmeal. Turns out he’s “addicted” to corn nuts and his dentures can’t deal with it.

He says he tapes up bags of his favorite snack and takes a sledgehammer to them, pounding those corns into near dust. Could I make this up?

Foodies are everywhere!

Darragh Doiron is a Southeast Texas foodie headed for “ingredients.” It’s snack time. Got snack ideas? Share them to