Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Cooking Meme

Here is my cooking meme, thanks to J Bo.

What is your first memory of baking/cooking on your own?

Okay, I there are a few that deserve recognition in this category...

When I was around 4 or 5 years old I made banana bread. At the time, I thought I had invented my own recipe and was destined to be the next Julia Child. I found out years later that my mother had measured out all the ingredients and put them in bowls for me; I just did all the mixing and mess-making.

One Mother’s Day morning my brother and sister and I wanted to take my mom breakfast in bed. Knowing that she liked coffee but having no clue how it was made, our kid brains went into action:

Okay... think, think, think! Mom uses the dirt-looking stuff in that Tupperware container. Also, water is somehow involved. Hey, waitaminute... we totally know how to make coffee!

So we stirred coffee grounds into a mug of cold water. To my mom’s credit, she took several sips and managed a convincing “Mmmm...”

In later years we would do “Parents’ Night Out”, where we would turn the dining room into a restaurant complete with cloth napkins, handmade menus, and candles. The earliest versions of this involved delicacies like beans n’ franks and fruit cocktail topped with whipped cream, but we improved over the years. Pop always left us a tip.

Who had the most influence on your cooking?

My mom. She made everything from scratch, and now I just can’t bring myself to buy mixes and frozen meals. It is a sickness, truly.

Do you have an old photo as evidence of an early exposure to the culinary world and would you like to share it?

The seventies, so very yellow and orange.

Mageiricophobia: do you suffer from any cooking phobia, a dish that makes your palms sweat?

I haven’t eaten meat in 15 years, so the thought of attempting a roast or something makes me nervous.

And this is pretty silly, but I have a fear of opening those cans of biscuits and pizza dough. You know, because they make that pop! sound? I really hate that.

What would be your most valued or used kitchen gadgets and/or what was the biggest letdown?

I love kitchen gadgets of all sorts, so it is very difficult for me to narrow this down. But if I am forced to choose one, it has to be my KitchenAid mixer. His name is Artie and he is cobalt blue. Yes, I like to name inanimate objects. I also adore my garlic press. The garlic press has yet to be named.

Biggest letdown:
Probably the slicing attachment I bought for my mixer. I used it once. I really do prefer doing the slicing with a knife and getting messy.

Name some funny or weird food combinations/dishes you really like and probably no one else!

Peanut butter & banana sandwiches are my comfort food. I ate them before interviews of all sorts, big exams, and my wedding.

Also, my brother and I used to love dipping french fries into Wendy’s Frosties. This admission typically prompts either a delighted “Oh, me too!” or a look of disgust.

What are the three eatables or dishes you simply don't want to live without?

1) I love mushrooms of all sorts, cooked almost any way.
2) In the summer: huge, juicy fruit salads with berries, nectarines, pineapple, and grapes.
3) My mom’s homemade apple pie

And can I list a fourth? I adore whipped cream.

Any question you missed in this meme, that you would have loved to answer? Well then, feel free to add one!

What was your worst kitchen mishap?

I was making a rice dish that called for toasted coconut. I put the coconut on a tray in the toaster oven and left the kitchen for a few seconds. Upon returning, I saw that the coconut had already burned black.

As I opened the door to remove the tray, the oven burst into flames. Like a total cooking idiot I threw water (water!) on this electrical device that was STILL PLUGGED IN, which made the fire even worse. I then tried to smother the fire by stuffing dish towels into the oven, which also caught on fire because the oven was STILL PLUGGED IN.

Finally, after breaking several breakables and burning my hands, and feverishly praying that the cabinets would not catch fire, and wondering if I should run next door and warn the neighbors, I remembered that I had a fire extinguisher under the sink. I blasted that oven until the extinguisher was empty and the flames were gone.

Then I burst into tears and vowed to never, ever touch coconut again.

Three quickies:
Your favorite ice-cream: I’m not a big ice cream fan, but the best I ever had was the chocolate cone at Kline’s Dairy Bar in Harrisonburg, Virginia.

You will probably never eat: meat

Your own signature dish: probably decorated cakes, and maybe my vegetable soup.

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Anonymous Bethiclaus said...

I love cooking! I didn't know I could love other people's food stories, but apparently, I can.

5:54 PM  
Blogger J Bo said...

I've dipped my fries!!! And I am so in awe of the fact that you make everything yourself. Not even mac and cheese from a box? (Oh how we love Annie's organic in our house!)

Glad you played! I enjoyed reading!

1:33 AM  
Blogger Liz said...

J bo, no mac & cheese mixes, but maybe I should try Annie's. We do buy things like regular pasta and bread. My mom used to bake all her own bread, if you can believe it, until one fateful day when my dad said he kinda liked Wonderbread better. Gah!

12:13 PM  
Blogger Liz said...

Also, I am so happy to find another fry dipper!

And Bethiclaus, I would love to hear your food stories.

12:15 PM  
Blogger Bearette24 said...

hi artie!

i think elvis liked peanut butter and banana sandwiches too :)

1:37 AM  

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