Sunday, November 22, 2009

BEFORE I REALIZED

Long, long ago, I yearned to be an accomplished cook like my mother and aunt. I collected their recipes and tried to mimic their tips and techniques. When I was 19 my aunt advised me that adding whipped cream to mashed potatoes was really yummy.
I was living in a college dorm at the time, one with a kitchen. I had next to nothing in the cupboards and refrigerator, but I had potatoes and meat of some sort that I wanted to prepare for my boyfriend. I was whipping the potatoes when I remembered that there was Cool-Whip in the fridge. So, feeling quite proud of myself, I added it to the potatoes. Not a good thing. When I admitted to my aunt what I had done she fell into fits of laughter. She still tells the story, much to my chagrin.
TIP: whipping cream added to mashed potatoes is wonderful,
Cool-Whip is not!

CONFESSION: When I was first married I kept a bag of flour under the kitchen sink and each time I made chicken I would dredge the pieces in that same bag. Oddly, we never became ill with salmonella poisoning. Call it
beginner's luck!

While making chili the other day I carefully read the label on the chili powder container. This is a habit I had to develop after sprinkling a large amount of cinnamon on a pot of chili many years ago. You don't need a picture for this, just think: CINNAMON---CHILI---too close in color when you are grabbing a container and your mind is elsewhere. That is what lead me to think of these other
food goofs from years gone by.

I will never be as good a cook as my mother or her sister, but I have learned a few things over the years -- and occasionally I learned it the hard way!

You may have something to share on this topic as well.....

Have a happy and healthy holiday!

22 comments:

*karendianne. said...

You dredged up something great here. I am going to have to think on this. I don't cook so I really don't think I can top this. I mean that seriously. I don't cook and I don't try new things. Food-wise. I'm very habitual that way. I'll promise to give this consideration and post again if I come up with something though. In the meantime I'll enjoy the comments as they roll in. What a grrreat post!!!

Nancy said...

The first year my sister-in-law had her in-laws for Thanksgiving she was frantic... There were lumps in the gravy. She called and I told her to simply use her fine gauge strainer and get the lumps out. It worked. She held the strainer over the sink and poured the gravy through. All that was left was the lumps in the strainer. The gravy went down the drain....LOL

Quilt Hollow said...

OMG...this is too funny and I couldn't help but read Nancy's comment!
One of our first turkey's (I say our because DH and I were just married)....we tried to find the packet of "inners" while hubby held a flashlight to see inside the turkey. Never found it....well not then but well after it was cooked and we were taking all meat off the bones...it was in the other end!! We still laugh about this to this day!

sewprimitive karen said...

omg Marcie you are one scary cook :-) !

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

Oh wow, these are so funny. We were visiting friends one summer, and as the Mom was running out the door to take one of her children to a baseball practice, she told us to help ourselves to the blackberry pie. So we sliced up nice pieces, and just as I was going to take a bite, one of the boys made the most awful face. He could hardly swallow. Turns out that instead of putting a cup of sugar in the pie, she added a cup of salt instead!!! Whoa, what a surprise that was!

Karen said...

The Cool Whip in mashed potatoes is the best story!

Gypsy Quilter said...

Early on in my bread baking career, I tried making bagels. They turned in to hocky pucks and from then on, I decided that rolls were my specialty. I'll leave the bagels up to the professionals.

Sue in MI said...

Your cinnamon in chili reminded me of the time my husband made chili and grabbed the ground cloves from the spice rack instead of the chili powder. We were poor college students at the time and ended up eating peanut butter & jelly sandwiches for dinner.

Libby said...

Crunchy stuffed peppers is at the top of my 'Flop List'
I wanted to make stuffed bell peppers with rice in the filling. Who needs a recipe? I just made a filling like I make meatloaf substituting uncooked rice for the cracker crumbs. I had no reason to believe that rice wasn't going to cook.
I tried to pass the finished product off to no avail. Oh well, I tried my hardest and no none chipped a tooth *s*

Darcie said...

lol Those are terrific stories, Marcie! I'm still chuckling!

And I'm thankful that God provided me with a very shallow memory...so I have no good cooking stories. (That I can remember, anyway.)

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

Janet said...

How funny, except the chicken dredging, that's scary. Thankfully my disastors were few and far between.

Anonymous said...

my disaster was more of an embarrassment. One of our first Thanksgivings together, hubby and I were doing the dinner and his family came down from Maine. (his Dad was a chef) I was feeling so proud that everything was on track and would be done perfectly. His Dad being a nervous nellie about his food asked if he could "check on the bird" in the oven so I said sure. When he opened the oven door, the door fell off into his hands. I spent the rest of the cooking time holding the oven door on until the bird was done. We lived in an apartment and the oven was old. We still laugh about this one to this day.
Dawn in MA

Lori said...

I have a few kitchen boo-boo's. The first time I made garlic chicken I was reading quickly through the recipe and read "cloves" it really said 5 cloves of garlic. We still laugh at that one. My niece actually asked for me to cook it "wrong" again!!

julieQ said...

Snort!!! I laughed so hard at this post...my worst thing is my first turkey...I put in the oven still frozen, and took it out...not done, and with the giblet bag still inside! (hanging my head in shame)...I am better than that now!

Kim said...

The Cool Whip story is wonderful, Marcie! When I married my first husband, I didn't know how to cook, but he was so particular about food, I didn't have a chance of making any goofy mistakes--I was very careful and spent a lot of time reading recipes. Cleaning's another story--I remember I had no idea how to mop a floor but to throw down a few buckets of soapy water and mop it up. With all the water I used, I'm really surprised it didn't leak into the downstairs neighbor's ceiling! We DO have a cooking story in our family--gravy like so many others! My sister-in-law made gravy one year and it was so thick, my father-in-law cut himself a piece with his knife! She'll never live that down.

QuiltingFitzy said...

Hmmm...my Cincinnati Chili IS made with cinnamon! (and it's DELICIOUS!)

I've made Kraft Macaroni-n-Cheese and forgotten to drain the water before adding the cheese..and then what do you do? Can't throw the water out because there goes the cheese!

I made a beautiful lemon meringue pie that puckered 6 ladies like no other, and they all wanted to be polite...

Oh! And the best? As a starving dorm-living student, I discovered that Cremora, when mixed with water, IS NOT AN ADEQUATE substitute for milk on oatmeal.

Hope you had a great Thanksgiving!

Katie said...

Oh my! Cool Whip! LOL

All my meals are mini disasters so I have no stories to tell. I try though....I really do!

Karen said...

Oh, Marcie, lots of good stories on your blog and your comments! My mom tells the story of my aunt making deviled eggs as a young bride when she had company for dinner. She finished them off with cinnamon instead of paprika. That cinnamon is versatile, isn't it ;) Apparently the guests didn't say anything but my aunt was horrified when she realized the mistake!

I once made mash potatoes for Thanksgiving at my in-law's. I cut the potatoes up very small and boiled them quite a long time. When I poured them in the collander, the water drained out and ... there was nothing left! I had boiled them completely to smithereens!

Wendy said...

What a hoot your cooking blunders are, I think I've blocked out any of my bad cooking memories.

Linda said...

Ok, I don't know that I can top any of these but I can certainly come close. I have so enjoyed reading these...thanks for sharing.

My husband and I went to my sister's house for a visit. The guys went fishing and my sister and I decided to cook. My sis lives in the country about 30 miles from town. We were making fried chicken but she didn't have any flour. She had white cake mix....We fried the chicken, made gravy, biscuits, etc....When the guys came in, my DH came in and said, where's the cake? He started looking all over the kitchen for it to no avail. My sister and I just kept looking at each other. We sat down to dinner and tried to eat the chicken but we couldn't for all the laughing. Plus it was the worst thing we have ever tried to eat. Take my word for it, cake mix and flour are not substitutes. We went to town and ate! My sister and I still laugh about this...

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and have a blessed Christmas. Hugs, Linda

SandyQuilts said...

Well it was Thanksgiving time 42 years ago. We were newly married and I sent DH to the grocery for a turkey. I don't remember what the problem was but he came home with a DUCK.

As you can see we're still married. We'll celebrate 43yrs New Years Eve.

Oh no we've never had duck again.

Janet said...

I was watching Oprah and Martha Stewart was on. This was before she was famous. Martha made a pecan pie. My husband loves pecans and since I was nursing our first born I wasn't able to write down the recipe, so I thought I would just remember it. After all it was just a pie crust, 12 eggs,1 cup of sugar, and some butter. Pour it in the pie shell and bake at 350 F.
You guessed it I had made oily sweet scrambled eggs! My husband ate it and said how great it was. LOL Ihave since decided that some recipes should be followed.