As tough as it is to accept, staying home except for necessary and emergency situations is still the recommended thing to do in April of 2021. This also means that binge watching is still on our menu. What we need is a new set of snacks and drinks that will pair perfectly with these sessions.
Here are just a few of the snacks I’ve paired with some of the shows that you can binge watch in the coming weeks:
Drink: Strawberry or Banana Milk
Best paired with: Sisyphus: The Myth
The K-drama Sisyphus:The Myth (available on Netflix) sees a woman from the future traveling back in time to help protect a genius inventor who may have caused the dystopian future in Korea. Played by Park Shin Hye, the woman mentions that among the dishes she misses eating in the future is the Korean snack tteokbokki.
What better snack and drink to pair with this show than actual tteokbokki? All you need is 1 liter of water or fish stock, 1/3 cup of gochujang (Korean chili paste) 1 tbsp each of chili powder and sugar, 200 g Korean rice cakes (or bilo-bilo) and 8 fish balls, each cut into 4 pieces.
Combine the water, gochujang, chili powder and sugar and simmer for 5 minutes. Then add in the rice cakes and the fish balls and cook until the rice cakes are chewy, about 4 minutes. That’s pretty much it! This spicy snack is perfect, not only with K-dramas, but also Korean strawberry or banana milk, which will help cool things down.
Snack: Buttered popcorn with curry powder
Drink: Root beer float
Paired with: Zack Snyder's Justice League
There is a whole convoluted history on why this version of the comic-book movie (available on HBO Go) was shelved, fought for and then finally released, but there is definitely no question that it is binge-worthy.
Since it’s three hours and 52 minutes broken into seven chapters, it’s actually very similar to a miniseries. Jaw-dropping Snyder visuals, wall-to-wall action and seeing our favorite heroes coming to life are all hallmarks of a popcorn movie and since this movie is super-powered, our snack should be, too!
Instead of the usual microwave popcorn, make it super-powered by adding 100 g of melted salted butter and 1 tbsp of curry powder.
With that super-charged popcorn, no ordinary drink will do. Place a scoop of vanilla ice cream into a mug or tall glass and pour root beer over it to make a delicious root beer float. This paired with the popcorn? That’s super!
Snack: Double Spam musubi
Drink: Iced green tea
Paired with: Cobra Kai
One of the biggest surprises a few years ago was launched on YouTube Red. Cobra Kai (now on Netflix) was a show about the characters from the Karate Kid franchise, now 30 years older, but seemingly with the same issues haunting them as before. The show was a success, and when Netflix decided to acquire the show, it just absolutely blew up in popularity.
The latest season, the show’s third, has also successfully brought back characters from the Karate Kid sequel, where Daniel visits Okinawa for a bit of soul searching. This campy, funny and outrageous “karate soap opera” is definitely worth a binge, and I’ve got the perfect snack for it, too.
I figure it would be great to pair the show’s Okinawan ties with my Double Spam musubi. You’ll need 4 slices Spam, 4 tbsps muscovado sugar, 1 cup cooked Japanese rice (kept warm), 1/2 cup Japanese mayo, 4 calamansi and 1 nori sheet.
First, cut one nori sheet in half. Then cut each half sheet into 2 and set aside. To make the sauce, mix together calamansi juice and Japanese mayo. In a frying pan, cook Spam, sprinkling the sugar on top to help it caramelize. Once cool, add some of the calamansi mayo on each Spam slice. Place 1/2 cup rice on 2 of the Spam slices and top the rice with the other 2 Spam slices. Use the nori sheets to wrap the Spam.
To make it more Okinawan style, reverse the order and place the rice on the nori sheets and then wrap the Spam slices in them like a sandwich. These snacks are filling but also highly addictive, exactly like the series!
Snack: Middle School Mess
Drink: Earl Grey tea
Paired with: Game of Thrones
I do realize that Game of Thrones (available on HBO Go) is an old show, but it is the 10th anniversary of the first season, so it is a great time to watch and binge on the show, especially now that you don’t need to wait for the next episode for seven days.
With all the British accents (plus a lot of betrayal) flying around, I thought it best to pair it with a sweet English snack to help lighten the mood. My version of the Eton Mess is the solution.
You’ll need 2 mangoes, 12-16 small meringue cookies, 2 packs all-purpose cream (chilled), and 2 green kiwis. Just slice the mangoes and kiwis into small cubes. Mix in half of the fruits with the chilled cream, slightly crushing it. In a clear cup or bowl, layer a small amount of the cream, top with mango and kiwi cubes and meringue cookies. Cover with remaining mango cream.
Decorate the top with remaining mango and kiwi cubes.
Once chilled, pair it with some Earl Grey tea and watch the kingdoms of Westeros do battle as you dig into deliciousness!