Thursday, March 12, 2015


Oh, yeah, the man can cook.
Prep for a "firewood roast"

            I just fished the potato peeler out of the garbage. It was hidden amongst two days of really gross soggy, food scrapings. It wasn’t pretty, my friend.

Fortunately I wore a pair of rubber gloves during the dig. I bought a box of rubber gloves, the kind they give you in the hospital if you’re visiting someone with a flesh-eating virus. You never know when you’re gonna need to put on the ol’ stretchy gloves. I used to be able to do most of my operations with Q-Tips.

Kay’s the one who urged me to check the garbage for the potato peeler, like I would actually throw it away with the peelings. Kay is smart like a hen. The thing is, if I hadn’t needed to peel a cucumber for supper, I wouldn’t have noticed the peeler was missing. A couple of weeks down the line, I would think someone stole the peeler. They’ve sure done it before.

By the way, I have to peel my our cucumbers, ‘case that’s the way Kay like’s ‘em. She wants ‘em peeled and the sides raked with fork tines, to give the slices the look of a coin. A cucumber coin. Kay’s nuts.

  That may be why she’s letting me do most of the cooking around here. If I waited for Kay to start a meal, we’d eat supper in the late evening. Senior citizens are supposed to eat supper between 4:00 and 5:00. Any later than that and we run the risk of thinking we’ve already eaten.

Over the last several months I’ve developed a greater appreciation for our slow cooker. Crock-pot, if you will. You can chunk a bunch of vegetables and meat into a crock-pot and just walk away… leave the house, play golf, go to bed, watch Gone with the Wind twice. Whenever you return you will find a roast so tender that you could cut it with a dull spoon. 

All I do with my roast is mix up a couple of envelopes of dried Beefy Onion soup with a cup and half of water. Chunk the roast in the crock-pot, add the cold soup mixture, and there you have it. I usually set my pot on medium and leave it for at least six hours.

You may not know this, but you can chop off a big chunk of firewood, pour some beefy onion soup over it, cook it in a crock-pot for a couple of days, and it’ll be good enough to bring to a church social. Happens all the time.

Not only am I proficient in crock-potting, I am getting pretty good at casseroles. I’ve only made one, but it was gold, Jerry. It was asparagus. (Pronounced “ass-per-grass) Kroger had asparagus on sale for two weeks running. The first week, it was $1.99 a bunch. I bought some and chunked it into the vegetable bin of the fridge. Might’ve been the meat bin. I get ‘em mixed up.

The next week it was $1.48 a bunch. That’s ridiculous! I didn’t want the asparagus I had purchased the previous week, but I couldn’t pass up $1.48. When I got home I cut the ends off both asparagus bunches and stuck ‘em in a vase of sugar water.

The vase of old asparagus sat on the shelf for a good while. Who can remember how long? Well, two days ago I needed something green to go with our starchy meal. All of a sudden, I remembered the asparagus. Normally I would chunk it in a bag and pour in some salt and olive oil and bake the stuff in the oven. But the tips of the green-stalked veggie were kind of droopy. That’s when the next thought hit me. – Bonk! – Casserole! You can hide anything in a casserole.

I found about 800 recipes for asparagus casserole on line. I didn’t have all the ingredients for any of ‘em. The recipe I picked required a can of cream of mushroom soup, sliced mushrooms, a brick of parmesan cheese, some spices from Nepal, sour cream and those fried onion bits that come in a can.

All I had were the soup and asparagus. In lieu of the sliced mushrooms, I peeled some potatoes and mixed ‘em with the asparagus. I used cheddar cheese instead of parmesan, and cream cheese instead of sour cream.  I layered all that stuff in the casserole dish and tossed it into the oven for 40 minutes. Then I took it out and sprinkled the top with corn flakes and cooked it for another five minutes. I used corn flakes, ‘cause the last can of fried onion bits we had was eaten during Hurricane Ike. The only thing that survived Ike was half a radish and some mustard.

The casserole was a big hit with Kay. We even had leftovers. Kay recommended I fry up some of the frozen ham that I purchased for Thanksgiving 2004 and add it to the casserole. A ham-asparagus casserole? If I am able to pry the ham out of the freezer, I’m fairly sure I’ll have to chunk it in the crock-pot for a couple of days. I doubt I’ll add it to the casserole, but it’ll certainly be s good enough for the next church social. That’s what I’m thinking.


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