Imperfect Paradise by Dan Dembiczak - I'm so proud of Dan Dembiczak, whose first novel - Imperfect Paradise - is available for sale in both eBookor Paperback on Amazon.com! The story follows ...
Friday, January 23, 2009
We left our meal plan open for Friday, so we'd have one flexible night to go out, order in, or otherwise be spontaneous about dinner. With the entire nation tightening their wallets, Dan came up with the idea to have a cheap date night at home, with Taco Bell takeout, beer from the supermarket, and Tivo'd TV shows. Being a lifelong fan of TB, I wholeheartedly agreed.
When I was little, and my Dad was out of town, my Mom would sometimes treat me to Taco Bell - and I'd usually order the 'Mexican Pizza'. In high school, TB became a hangout - thanks in part to the 59/79/99 promotion, and in part to having friends working there. I recall people dying their hair in the bathroom, and many plans to meet there before going elsewhere. In college, my campus had a small Taco Bell Express cart, which was when I fell in love with the 7-layer burrito, and when I started collecting Taco Bell Hot Sauces.
College was also when I made Taco Bell Hot Sauce soup - which takes a lot of packets, but costs nothing, so is perfect for a college student budget. My old roommate Julie & I used to make special trips to the big Taco Bell after nights out on the town, and often on the drive back from our regular trips up to Canada.
In more recent years, the siren song of TB often called after a night out with friends. We'd find ourselves walking from whatever bar we finished the night at, to Taco Bell, and back to Craig's place to eat it and watch TV. (I still weep at the sight of the spot where the Taco Bell on Capitol Hill once stood.) And after moving to Beacon Hill, Dan & I have made Taco Bell a ritual when we return from any trip out of town. We haul our luggage inside the house, then hop in the car and go get Coronas and Taco Bell.
Through all these years of infatuation with Taco Bell, I learned a trick for rewrapping my burritos so they stay tidy. You first unwrap the burrito, laying the wrapper open flat in a diamond shape, and place the burrito so the open end (TB burritos always have one open end and one folded end) is even with the top corner of the wrapper. Then you fold the bottom point of the wrapper up to just below the bottom of the burrito. Next, fold the wrapper up, even with the bottom of the burrito, which ensures any drips out the bottom are trapped in the wrapper. Fold the right point of the wrapper over the the left, then the left point over to the right and tuck behind. Now you can hold the burrito by the wrapper, and slowly fold down the wrapper as you eat, leaving the last bite nestled in a wrapper cup.
After rewrapping my 1/2 lb cheesy bean & rice burrito ($1.59 - which truly did weigh 8oz), and Dan's Chicken Fiesta Burrito ($2.86), I plated them with my Spicy Chicken Soft Taco ($1.39) and his Chicken Chalupa with Nacho Cheese ($2.59). I loaded mine up with Fire Sauce, and we enjoyed them with beers and hard ciders while we watched the Office, 30 Rock, Grey's Anatomy, Private Practice, Ace of Cakes, and a Food Network Challenge.