One of the country’s most threatening issues is the growing APPETIZER epidemic!
Appetizers are totally out of control and proportion. Holy smokes, I’m not even kidding right now and please don’t try to act like you don’t know what I’m talking about. If you have been to a restaurant in the past four weeks you know EXACTLY what I’m getting at.
First, let’s address the true function of an APPETIZER?
Is an appetizer, the pre-meal snack that is supposed to stimulate ones appetite? Or is an appetizer a small portion of food used to suppress your hunger before a meal??
All around the world, menus everywhere offer appetizers. American, Italian, Greek, Chinese, Indian, etc, everyone is in on it! You name it and the cuisine of your choice offers a variety of pre meal apps. Appetizers are a big money-making, calorie sucking, thing and often times very hard to ignore. Especially if one comes to the table hungry.
Here is what I know about appetizers. They are, in my opinion, partly to blame for the growing obesity problem because the majority of appetizer selections are unhealthy processed, grease laden foods with zero nutritional value.
A simple app to someone who hasn’t eaten all day is a tantalizing tease and could become the culprit of an unprotected post-meal pregnancy. The mouth-watering provocative pallet pleaser come out hot and smelling delicious. With a deep wiff and a lingering eye, any defense is gone and the plate is piled high with some sort of over the top cheesy fried melt. Boom, congrats, you’re expecting several unwanted pounds, high cholesterol, and some seriously bad gas.
Without some sort of protection and or defense mechanism your hunger caves into submission.
I imagine the temptation is much like an alcoholic being seated at a table pre set full with empty or full wine glasses. (Hello Olive Garden, Nick and Sams or Table 13) Sheer enticement that is scandalously tempting.
Menu’s need a new structure or strict guideline policy. Almost like an open door meeting policy. Some men and women choose to keep their office doors ajar when in a room with the opposite sex. This a form of protection. One, so no one gets the wrong impression or has private temptation to act inappropriately. Menus need a protection criteria plan. If you’re so hungry you could eat your own arm off, skip this section and go directly to the main entrée area and order immediately. Maybe the waiter should ask up front on a scale of 1-10 how hungry are you? Depending on your answer is the menu you receive. This would help elevate confusion and control portions more appropriately. It’s everywhere.
The appetizer pressure is grand. The waiter makes his or her way over and immediately pushes drink orders and with an energized voice, “can I start you out with some apps?”
Mr. Chicken Fry falls for the app trap all the time. His eyes wide when he orders the sample platter before he also asks for a sweet ice tea. He usually comes to the dinner table hungry which is mistake number one. The appetizers roll in and he’s like a kid in a candy store. Reaching for the quesadilla, a cheese stick, a dip in the marinera and now a buffalo wing into the ranch. By the time we are ready to order, he’s full! Really?? Really?
For Easter dinner last year we dinned at a very nice local steak house. The warm crispy bread and butter was served the second the napkins were placed in our lap. The three of us were ridiculously famished which was noted when in synch we were grabbing at the lone loaf which seemed like the smallest but life saving loaf of bread on the planet. Before the menus came Mr. Chicken Fry was reciting appetizers to the waiter. We did the ultimate Abercrombie and FITnessno-no by rifling through about 4 or more loaves of bread before the fried calamari and salads were served!
Mr. Chicken Fry is a pre ordering machine and usually not the lighter fare if you catch my drift! He lives up to his infamous name with his fried calamari, buttery soaked crab claws, fried spicy buffalo wings, and supreme nachos. He’s lucky that he was blessed with a freak of nature high-speed metabolism.
Appetizers are supposed to be small portions of food designed to stave off hunger while you politely make conversation and wait on the main entrée. Only some of us just can’t handle it! The enticement to pre-eat is all too engaging. Not to mention the selections are horrid.
French fries covered with sour cream and cheese, chips & salsa, bacon wrapped poppers, bread & butter, oil covered flat bread, fried mozzarella sticks, nachos etc etc
Order on the spot. Order, eat and visit at the end of the meal. Come to the table, order, eat and move on. Some folks don’t know how to slow down or say no and always end up over filling on the apps. If you’re engaged in a whole big dining experience order your own appetizer. This isn’t against the law you know!
Order a grilled chicken breast sliced and have a little pre-protein before you have the grilled grouper. Another idea is to order a salad appetizer or a small order of guacamole. My favorite is to order corn tortillas as a substitute for chips. Hummas and veggies is another bright healthy idea.
Never order appetizers if you are ravenous. Here is another idea, skip the apps entirely and order already! Why wait? Otherwise you will make a terrible decision and fall prey to over eating or better yet to some rich gooey mistake that will haunt you for the rest of the week. Inhaling appetizers is terrible because your body and brain are not in alignment.
Safe Appetizers – Abercrombie & FITness approved foods
Edamame Spicy or Regular
Corn tortillas with salsa & guacamole
Fresh veggies and hummus
Baked chicken wings – remove the skin
Smoked Salmon or tuna
Bean soup or chicken broth tortilla soup
Grilled Meat or fish Ka-Bobs
Eat fresh and be the boss. There is no shame in ordering off the menu. There is no law against ordering upon arrival. There is no written or unwritten rule against saying no to high-end cheese trays or mindless party grazing.
And if you have planned on a long dining experience, make your appetizer count. Do it up and full tilt if it’s your cheat meal. Just don’t make it a habit.
Work it off the next day by eating clean and sweating out a challenging workout.
Love, greetings and happy eating!