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Your mom's weird cooking ... and other stories? (recipes encouraged)

I can't say that Mom had too many weird/horrible recipes. But she did have one that I've never seen anywhere else "Lunch Meat with B-B-Q Sauce". It's quick and really tasty:

1/2 cup chopped onion
2 tbsp butter
1 cup catsup
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup water
3 tbsp vinegar
1 tbsp prepared mustard
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
10 oz. can luncheon meat cut into strips (Spam is much tastier than the Treet that we usually got. Now I use Spam Lite).

Sauté onions in butter, then add remaining ingredients. Simmer luncheon meat in sauce for 15 minutes. Serve with rice or noodles. For noodles we usually used egg noodles.

May 24, 2009
bluecatbeads in Home Cooking

Food Odors at Work

We have a pretty diverse workplace. This means that approximately 1/5 of the time, someone is heating up something that smells like dirty socks to me. My cubicle is right next to the kitchen area, so escaped smells are inevitable. Sure, I could complain. It would get me nowhere, though. Instead, I found that the orange air freshener that Trader Joe's sells (the one made from real orange peels) is a FABULOUS deodorizer. A couple of spritzes, and all is well. I think that the orange oil just drags the scent components in the air right down to the ground. Anyway, I am able to make my workplace tolerable because of it.

We have one person (I have not figured out which one) who regularly eats a soup made with mealworms. I know this because that person will leave the plastic container out on a side table for the rest of the day. Weird, but fortunately not smelly.

Much more smelly, we had a guy program the microwave for 40 minutes instead of 4 and walk away from his popcorn. Of course fire ensued. That was a lovely afternoon. At least we got a fire drill out of it.

May 19, 2008
bluecatbeads in Not About Food

Blackberry Syrup

You don't need it so much to sweeten the blackberries as because you are making a simple syrup that's infused with blackberries. If you used less sugar you would have blackberry water, not blackberry syrup.

Apr 27, 2008
bluecatbeads in Recipes

I never eat _______ out because nobody makes it right but me.

Fried eggs...I like them over easy, and most places don't et it right...if the yolk is runny, their whites are too. I don't understand why it's so difficult to get this right.

Also pancakes. I have nothing against white flour, but most places where I would order breakfast foods out obviously use a mix for their pancakes. Bisquick just doesn't do it for me. I use the basic recipe from How To Cook Everything, whichever version fits what I have on hand that day.

Apr 27, 2008
bluecatbeads in Home Cooking

ANYTHING to eat in Springfield/South Alexandria?

If you're so close to Trader Joe's you should check out Delia's down the street on Backlick. It's just north of the Jiffy Lube, on the same side of the road in a little strip mall. I can't say that I know them at dinner time, I work in the area but live in Prince William. They have a huge menu, and I've never had anything bad there. They do some great chicken and steak (I had a salad there that had both on it - it was divine). They have some Peruvian dishes as well. For sushi, check out Matsui Sushi on Beulah - it's in the same shopping center as Red Hot & Blue. And King Street Blues has a secondary location in Kingstowne - it's way down at the end of all of the shopping centers, opposite the Giant Foods.

Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese

The Barilla recipe is even quicker - you cook the pasta in milk which thickens everything, then you just have to add your cheese. It's on the back of their macaroni box with more Italian flavors (I think they use Fontina and Parmesan), but here's their cheddar version:

Apr 26, 2008
bluecatbeads in Recipes

Gardening: Just for Yuppies and Econerds?

His argument is a very urban/suburban one. Tons of people grow their own vegetables because it's less expensive to produce their own, including preserving by canning and freezing what's not immediately eaten. It's a low-cash way to live, especially in areas not reliant on city water. I can't speak for urbanites, but understand the issue for middle-class suburbanites who are tied to the car culture, and live too far away from their jobs. Even those people can reap great rewards from the square-foot gardening method, which would minimize a great deal of his concerns. You can get a great result with minimal effort.
Of course, if those suburbanites would consider replacing all that grass, their efforts with lawn care could go towards more profitable pursuits.

Apr 26, 2008
bluecatbeads in Features