June 16, 2011

New Twists on Food

I'm very fortunate that my husband will completely pick up the slack if he's home. He'll cook, clean, run errands, cart the kids around... as long as he's not working.

So last night when there was a HUGE scheduling conflict, we decided I'd just pick up Ringo, take him to dinner, and he'd fix dinner for everyone else.

I cook by recipe. My husband cooks with recipe, but mostly he cooks by taste.

So Ringo and I went out for sushi, which was quite candidly, an absolutely miserable experience for me as he said probably five words the entire meal, and my husband went to Publix in search of ingredients he thought he'd need for what he decided to make for he and the other two boys... sweet and sour or honey chicken.

No recipe. Fry that chicken up and make a sauce, right?

He decided at some point that flour was just going to be too bland for his batter... so while rummaging through the pantry he decided to use... get this... pancake mix. It might give it that sweet 'ZING!' that he was looking for.

In retrospect, having spoken to Bones of the great "Honey/pancake Chicken" experiment, I realize that eating with a sullen 16 year old may have been the long end of the stick. I made out.

I asked the boys how it was and this was Bones reply... big eyed like he gets when he wants to make a point, "Are you kidding me?! MOM. MOM. He made it out of...pancake.mix."

Me: Well, worthy try. Seriously. How was it?

Mr. T: Well... it was OK if you covered it with lots and lots of sauce. You couldn't taste the chicken.

Me: So you could only taste the batter so you smothered it in honey sauce?

Bones: yes. And in case you're wondering, it tasted like burned pancakes. With honey sauce...

I can't quit laughing. God love him. I'm going to tell him about this invention called the 'internet'. He can look up recipes...


I joined a pool with a summer membership down the street. We don't have a pool in our backyard, one of the few Florida homes without one, I think.

Every afternoon around 2 or 3:00, I take them swimming. I read and they swim and burn off energy.

And this happened at the pool, which in turn made me blurt out my most often said saying, "I live with Clowns."

Bones: Mom! Look at this! It's gum!

Me: OMG. That is nasty! Bones. Throw that away!

Bones: Mom, it's MY gum. I was underwater and Mr. T made me laugh and my gum floated out!

Me: GO... Throw that away!

And mistake number 1 was when I went back to reading my book and mistake number 2 was when I didn't watch him throw it away because Bones is the type of kid that unless you stare him down until he completes your demand, unless you stay on top of him, nothing is ever a demand... it is all merely a suggestion.

Flash forward 10 minutes.

Bones: You didn't! You didn't.

Mr. T: Bwahahahahah

Bones: Mom! He put gum in my hair!

Mr. T: Oh yeah, well he kept touching me with his gum. He put it on my back. So I just put it ON his head, but NO, he had to freak, pull his head under water and squish it.

Bones, big eyed and incredulous: I have GUM IN MY HAIR!!

Good grief. And his expressions were priceless and it was awful and I should have been pissed, but I laughed, mainly because Bones was so over the top Drama.

And then... seriously... three minutes later, gum in the hair was forgotten and he was doing his thing in the pool.

Yes, peanut butter takes gum out of hair. When I looked it up it said, "Don't use Chunky Peanut butter."

Really? Someone really had to put that? It's not bad enough my kid has GUM STUCK in his hair, but now I'm going to mix it with chunks of peanuts? Really?

Anyway, I thought this was something that happened to little kids... getting gum stuck in their hair. And happened to girls.

I was evidently... wrong.

I live with Clowns.

Posted by Boudicca at June 16, 2011 08:07 PM

My wife should give your husband lessons on cooking improvisation, some of her best recipes have been either thrown together with whatever's available or total accidents. Like the time she accidentally mixed barbecue sauce in with cut potato wedges - and it came out GREAT. Or the other night when she breaded up some chicken tenders which came out quite tasty. She then told me that she didn't have any bread crumbs or flour, so she crushed up some Cheerios in the blender and used that on the chicken. Never would have guessed.

Posted by: diamond dave at June 16, 2011 09:24 PM

Sometimes, it's GREAT. Actually, usually it's great. I'm kind of sorry I missed this one, if anything for the table conversation. He really is an excellent cook. Just... pancake mix and chicken don't go together.

Posted by: Bou at June 16, 2011 09:29 PM

My ex was a most wonderful cook...NOT! He liked to make casseroles out of whatever he could find in the pantry. His specialty (which filling changed depending on what was on hand) was called "Riceypoo." I kid you not! He called it that lovingly, I called it that with a certain revulsion! Another one of his masterpieces was zucchini that he had hollowed out, stuffed with stale cookie crumbs (and who knows what else), baked, and sliced. Argh.

It's no wonder we're not together anymore!

Posted by: DogsDontPurr at June 16, 2011 09:50 PM

I would disagree that chicken and pancake mix don't go together! Have you seen the new trend? Waffles and chicken tenders. I kid you not.

Posted by: Rave at June 16, 2011 10:21 PM

For Ringo:

You've got to do your own growing, no matter how tall your grandfather was. ~Irish Proverb

Posted by: Rave at June 16, 2011 11:29 PM

Well, at least it was just a gum gaffe!

You know how babies mouth things? At some point, kids are supposed to outgrow that oral fixation, right? Not so ...

My dad came home from work late one afternoon, emptied the pocket of his scrubs on the coffee table, and crashed on the sofa for a lengthy siesta. Come dinner time, he awoke, surveyed the coffee table, and realized something was missing. My oldest brother, who I think must have been about 9 at the time, had been walking around sucking on something, occasionally clicking it against his teeth. Dad didn't find what he was looking for, so finally announced, "Has anyone seen that little round piece of bone I left on the coffee table?" Sure enough ... Ned had it in his mouth. Turns out a migrant worker had blown his paycheck on a night of binge drinking, had wrecked his car and suffered a skull fracture which required trepanization ... hence the little button of bone. Why Dad had dropped it into his pocket, I don't know, but it certainly made for an entertaining dinner conversation!

Another time, a coworker of mine got a call from her son's school. I think he was in 6th or 7th grade. Although it really isn't funny, what happened was he had put a bunch of marbles in his mouth, swallowed one, and choked. They had to call the ambulance, and the EMTs performed an emergency tracheotomy on him. After the marble was extracted, his mom had it enshrined in an acrylic box and put it where he would be reminded not to ever again do anything so stupid!

A friend of mine likes to tell a story of how, when she was in junior high, she put a tinker toy stick in her mouth to see if it would fit. It did, barely, and it got stuck vertically in place, propping her mouth wide open. They had to cut the stick in half to remove it.

My daughter, who worked at a pet store, told me that there were rules about the size of turtles that could be sold. Turtles which have a shell diameter under 4 inches are not supposed to be sold because they are a potential choking hazard!

May your son stick to gum and avoid turtles, tinker toys, marbles, and biological waste!

Posted by: PeggyU at June 17, 2011 01:04 AM

I have a general rule of thumb, if anyone cooks for me, it is probably the best meal I remember ever eating. ;-) And mostly I'm pretty sincere about it. If someone took the time to THINK of something and to make it, I'm so dang appreciative I'll not say nary a word if it's not good. I'll find SOMETHING... ANYTHING that is wonderful.

It's funny, but my bil is a chef and owns a very well known and respected restaurant on The Jersey Shore. Whenever he visits, during dinner he goes on and on about how much he loves what I made. Granted I truly have never made something bad, but it's just regular solid cooking. It is always appreciated that HE appreciates it, but mostly I realize what he's saying is, "This tastes good and I didn't have to cook it and I appreciate she did..."

My one stipulation, however, and he knows to not let it offend, is my husband often cooks to heavy and fat for me. He cooks in butter and I've told him my body can't digest it. I eat a salad or find fish on those days. I can't eat heavy fatty foods.

Peggy- You always find the funniest damn memories.

Rave- Well, considering both grandfathers were 5'6" there is not much concern about being tall! Seriously, I'd not be 16 again to save my life...

Posted by: Bou at June 17, 2011 06:57 AM

I'd probably faint if my husband were to fix dinner. At one time, when we were first married, he had a handful of meals he would prepare, but he has since abandoned it. He would have never been that adventurous, though. He would ALWAYS get out the cook book and follow directions to the letter, measuring the ingredients carefully. It was something to watch. I have always just guesstimated and thrown things together.

As to being 16 again, I agree with you! We watched Napoleon Dynamite again last week, and the part where they are at the prom, having a lousy time, and dancing to Forever Young is priceless.

Posted by: PeggyU at June 17, 2011 11:24 AM

DDP- I reread my comment... it was not meant as a slight to you about your ex! I think I'd struggled with Riceypoo! Not even the name is wonderful... I can't quit laughing.

Posted by: Bou at June 17, 2011 09:21 PM