Category Archives: Live Well and Out of the Shell

VA Peanut Surprise in CA

Here’s a quest I can really get into … determine which city best exemplifies the Little Nutthings motto “live well and out of the shell”. Based on a recent trip, San Francisco gets my vote, though the study is ongoing. Suggestions welcome below.

Hog on Rock

Hog on Rock

But back to San Francisco, where the attention to all things food and drink naturally [emphasis on natural] lends itself to living well. From brief stays in the Union Square area and the Mission district, with a couple of side trips to other areas, we applied ourselves; we ate and drank and discovered new gastronomical delights day and night. An educational and especially delicious highlight was dinner at Hog and Rocks, the city’s first specialty ham and oyster bar. Full disclosure: a family member is a bartender here, but we tried hard not to let that or our amazing drinks affect our objectivity.

When “Rising Star Chef” Robin Song learned we were visiting from Virginia, he shared their latest, and perhaps best, dry-cured ham with us, Edwards Surryano from VA. And guess what accounts for its distinctive nutty flavor and wonderfully marbled meat?

Robin Song copy Chef Robin Song

A diet rich in VA peanuts!!

So I think I got the ‘living well’ part down. Next trip, I’ll work on getting further out of the shell. It might have been easier to accomplish this in one dramatic leap a few months ago. On Feb 13, public nudity without a parade permit was ruled illegal in San Francisco. Honestly, the law is unnecessary for me; I can’t imagine how much of my shell would need to crack for me to appear nude in public, in or out of a parade.

Speaking of VA peanuts — in addition to lots of gourmet Virginia Peanuts, The Virginia Shop in Olde Town Alexandria now carries four designs of Little Nutthings shirts: AstroNut, Beer Nut, Health Nut and PregNut. Bob, the owner, decided to go with the unisex style for the PregNut shirt instead of the maternity style. So if you need a Mother’s Day present and your mom doesn’t need a maternity shirt, this could be it. In any case, be sure to thank your mom for her earlier pregnancy.

‘til next time, take good care, live well and out of the shell.


Oh, My Darling … nutty people

We’re truly nuts for you, dear nutty readers. And with Valentine’s Day this week, we have a Little Nutthing something special for you.
nuts for you_web-small

In fact, we’re so Nuts for You that we’re sharing a non-nut recipe today created by Maxine Sharkey Giammo, a natural nut, noted San Francisco bartender and future LN guest blogger.  This cocktail recipe is easy and delicious. If you can find fresh pomegranate seeds, add a tablespoon before you shake and it will make the drink bright pink!

Be My Clementine
1.5 oz bourbon or brandy
3/4 oz fresh lemon juice
1/2 oz spiced syrup (see below for recipe)
4 spiced clementine segments
spoonful fresh pomegranate seeds (optional)
ginger beer

Add all ingredients except ginger beer to shaker with ice. Shake, pour into a Collins glass and top with ginger beer.

Spiced Syrup
2 c. sugar
2 c. water
2 tbsp clementine zest
2 inches peeled fresh ginger
1 tbsp allspice berries
1 tbsp black peppercorns

1 tbsp white vinegar
fresh clementine segments (5-6 fruits)

Combine all ingredients except vinegar and clementine segments in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the sugar is dissolved. Add white vinegar to round it out. (It’s strange but it works.) Let cool, strain, and then add fresh clementine segments, which will steep overnight and absorb the spiced syrup flavor. Syrup will keep for up to one week in the fridge.

Here’s a nutty side-trip — from Valentine’s Day and a recipe with clementines to a goof of a love song. At first, Oh, My Darling, Clementine “seems a sad ballad sung by a bereaved lover about the loss of his darling, the daughter of a miner in the 1849 California Gold Rush, but as the verses continue it becomes obvious that the song is in fact a tongue-in-cheek parody of a sad ballad. For example, in the second verse we learn that Clementine’s feet are so big that she has to wear boxes instead of shoes (presumably because size 9 shoes are not available), hardly a detail that would be mentioned in a serious romantic ballad. Her ’tragic demise’ is caused by a splinter in her toe that causes her to fall and drown – clearly a ridiculous accident, but told in a deadpan style. Finally, at the end of the song, the lover forgets his lost love after one kiss from Clementine’s “little sister”. Wikipedia.  There are many recorded versions of the song, from Bobby Darrin’s and Jan & Dean’s versions in the 50’s, to Westlife’s song on Allow Us to Be Frank, to Neil Diamond’s 6 minute, rockin’ version on the Americana album last year.

So, we’d love to know … how can the Little Nutthings® blog help enrich your life?  What would you like to see more, or less, of?   Afterall, we are nuts for you, we want to please.  How can we help you to Live Well and Out of the Shell™?

As always, all Little Nutthings® characters are made from real nuts … for real nuts. Any resemblance to anyone living or dead is purely intentional. All rights reserved.
Copyright ©  Little Nutthings® LLC   2008-2013

One nutty resolution fits all

The new year is just a few days old, so how are your resolutions going?  Have any? Too many? Primed for a let down? Maybe Little NutThings can help whatever the situation with just ONE resolution!

Mixed nuts_ out of the shell_colored nuts

Mixed Nuts

Simply put, live well and out of the shell. “Live well” … take good care of your body, be kind to yourself and everyone else. “Out of the shell” … I wish I knew.  I’ve been working on this for a long time. Take a look at these real nuts.

If I were a plant nut, I’d like to be the colorful green one in the middle – note the crack developing on the bottom of the shell. Or I’d choose the beautiful almond beside it with the even bigger opening. Truth … I’m more like the almond on the bottom right, breaking out but undercover of the bigger walnut and near the tough Brazil nut.

Quartet, a new movie directed by Dustin Hoffman, opens January 11. Directing a movie is a first for him, though something he says he wanted to do for years. When asked what took him so long, he replied that it was his own ” private nuttiness that stopped him”.

We love that he said nuttiness in his explanation; but more, we love the idea that even Dustin Hoffman has trouble getting out of his shell. Of course, it’s all a matter of degrees. Some people want to direct a movie, others just want to dance with abandon.

So, who inspires you to pursue your dreams? We’d love to hear.
Now, please, be good to yourself this year. Live well. Spend some time out of the shell.