Feb. 8, 2013 11:07 pm
Updated: Feb. 11, 2013 4:42 pm
Long ago, when I considered myself an average cook, I began improvising when needed. Now, I'm not saying that I would burn the salad, or need a recipe to make ice, but I cooked for one reason, and one only... PBJ or bologna twice a day just wouldn't
suit my taste buds! As they say, necessity is the mother of invention!
To date, I rarely think ahead enough to defrost meat with tomorrow's dinner in mind. That's why the micro has a defrost cycle! Now my dear friend Denise refuses this method, but I must admit that she complains her food doesn't thaw in the frige while she's
at work... So, when I return home at 4pm, and wonder "what's for dinner," I simply plop "something" into the micro... emergency resolved!
There was a particular day that comes to mind, when the power went out here in Phoenix. I learned later that it was a multi-state outage. It was reported that a major transfomer died, which fed power to parts of AZ and CA... maybe elsewhere, I don't recall.
At the time, mum was living with us, and was all in a tither as to just how I planned on preparing the dinner meal. Fortunately, I had taken ground beef out of the freezer in time to thaw, thinking meatloaf. "But, you don't have an oven," mum said... "Trust
me, we'll eat tonight," regardless of the lack of cooling, lights, or the oven!
While mum mixed the fixin's for the meatloaf, I peeled a few potatoes and carrots, and cut them up. Then, I headed out to the back yard and fired up the gas grill... Mum asked, "how can you cook a meatloaf on the grill?" I didn't really know about indirect
heat on a grill, but I plopped the tin of meatloaf onto the "off" side, and closed the lid. Returning to the kitchen, I packaged up potato, carrot and some onion in foil, adding a dot of margarine, bit of salt, and wrapped the packets up tight, adding them
to the grill. Less than an hour later, the three of us sat down with a veggie packet, and sliced meatloaf on our plates! I thought it was funny when mum asked when I'd learned to cook that way... I could have said "while camping," but I really wasn't much
of a camper! Tongue in cheek, I replied, "when I was a girl scout!" I think she missed the joke!
I'm sure there have been other times when I had to be a little "creative" in my cooking practices, but the point remains, there's usually an alternative when an emergency arises!
OMG, I just remembered that when I worked at a dry cleaner's many lifetimes ago, one of the "pressers" used to bring an egg and bacon sandwich every day, wrapped tightly in foil. She would place the sandwich somewhere on the steam press machine, and have that
wonderful hot lunch when "the bell rang!" Of course, she cooked the food at home, but kept it warm using the press machine! I've also heard of folk putting food under the hood of the car, so the engine heat might keep it warm, or maybe even cook it... I
wonder if I really can fry an egg on the sidewalk when it's 115F outside? I'd hate to waste the egg, nor do I want to eat the dirt that would come with it, lol!
After this, I thinking once again that an outdoor kitchen might not be such a bad idea, afterall! Of course, I'd have to have a jacuzzi wrapped into the mix... Regardless, a sink fed by a garden hose, and a built in grill hooked to the house gas line sure
would be a wonderful addition. I don't think that I'd go so far as an outdoor frige though. Not in this climate!
So, next time you have a dinner 911, take a deep breath, and think... then be happy, be healthy, be crazy!