Friday Recipe Exchange: Hearty Tomato Soup and Recipe Fails

JeffreyW’s tasty tomato soup and grilled cheese

Since we witnessed a 70-degree temperature drop here yesterday, soup had to be on the menu.  And since I have a counter full of ripe tomatoes, tomato soup sounded good.  This is not your basic canned soup and grilled cheese.  These recipes are tasty, hearty and easy to whip up.  And the flax cookies are addictive. If you’re using an Instant-Style Pot, I have instructions for that at the bottom of the soup recipe.

On the board:

  1. Hearty Tomato Soup
  2. Totally Awesome Grilled Cheese Sandwiches, recipe here
  3. Flax Cookies, recipe here

Hearty Tomato Soup

  • 28 oz canned or fresh tomatoes*
  • 1 tsp crushed garlic
  • 8 oz carrots
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 3 green onions, including greens
  • 1 tsp basil
  • ¼ tsp oregano
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 tbsp whole wheat flour

2-quart saucepan, blender

In a blender, mix tomatoes, garlic, carrots, celery & onions. Blend until smooth. In saucepan, combine tomato mixture with spices, heat over medium heat, stirring constantly. Let bubble (don’t let boil or use high heat, it will scorch) for 5 minutes. Add flour to cold milk, blend until smooth, add to soup. Let bubble again, reduce to low heat and let simmer for 15 minutes. Stir occasionally.

Instant Pot instructions In a blender, mix tomatoes, garlic, carrots, celery & onions. Blend until smooth. In the instant pot, combine tomato mixture with spices. Cover and cook on soup setting for 10 minutes.  In a measuring cup (or use blender) add flour to cold milk, blend until smooth,

Use the quick depressurize method, soup should still be bubbling.  add milk mixture to soup and whisk in until thickened.  If you need to bring it back up to temperature, I use the saute feature, stirring constantly until thickened (about a minute), don’t let scorch. Turn heat off (or to warm setting) and cover until ready to serve.

*you can use fire-roasted tomatoes for added flavor. I have fire-roasted tomatoes tucked away in the freezer for future batches.

These Flax Cookies are addictive

(This menu and recipes are featured in my cookbook: What’s 4 Dinner Solutions Cookbooks: Summer into Fall)

_________________________________________________________________

What’s on your plate this weekend?

I had a request to ask if you wanted to share your biggest recipe disasters. Did you serve it anyway or just toss it?

I’ve had a couple of notable failures, including pulling out the powdered sugar instead of potato starch to thicken a spicy veggie soup. Sigh. No way to save that one.

Hit the comments with your recipes, meals, and disasters…

Here’s one of my favorite recipe fails, the end is priceless:

 






143 replies
  1. 1
    cain says:

    How dare you madam put mayo on grilled cheese! You’ll be hearing from my lawyer!
    Tomato too?! The humanity!

    The only good cheese is american for grilled cheese.

    I apparently have hard opinions. Who would have thought?

    ReplyReply
  2. 2

    @cain: I would have totally agreed with you until I tried this one.

    ReplyReply
  3. 3
    Yarrow says:

    @cain: Tomatoes? Jalapenos? Mayonnaise? What sort of sacrilege is this? Grilled cheese sandwiches are bread, cheese and butter. That’s it. You can make sandwiches with other things but you have to call them something else.

    I guess I have hard opinions on this issue too.

    ReplyReply
  4. 4
    geg6 says:

    That video is awesome.

    As a teenager (and a stoner) who was at home during summer break from college, I decided to bake some brownies one evening. Yes, I had the munchies. So I mixed them up and stick them in the oven. What I forgot was the can of Pam spray, which I left on the stove. As the cookies baked, the can heated up and eventually exploded like a missile, partially caving in the top of the stove and sending the fan through the ceiling, hitting the springs of the bed my sister was sleeping in upstairs. I still haven’t lived that one down.

    ReplyReply
  5. 5
    Yarrow says:

    That video is hilarious.

    ReplyReply
  6. 6
    Yarrow says:

    @geg6: Oh, god. That is awesome. Glad your sister was okay. How were the brownies?

    ReplyReply
  7. 7

    @cain: @Yarrow: Tomatoes are okay. Gotta move with the times. Jalapenos…………..sounds a little I dunno, exotic…………..
    Mayo is RIGHT OUT!!

    ReplyReply
  8. 8
    burnspbesq says:

    It’s busy season, and I am fighting the urge to stress-eat an entire Gallo hard salami and a box of Entenman’s chocolate chip cookies.

    ReplyReply
  9. 9
    Yarrow says:

    @John Revolta: You can add what you want, but then you have to call it, “Grilled cheese sandwich with tomatoes” or whatever else you add. But mayo? Nope.

    ReplyReply
  10. 10
    RedDirtGirl says:

    What a delightful video! I’ve had a shitty month, and I think that may have been the first good laugh I’ve had in weeks. Thank you!

    ReplyReply
  11. 11
    MomSense says:

    I made a really yummy roasted cauliflower dish the other night. My teenager ate probably 3/4 of a head of cauliflower. I’ve been trying to find substitutes for fries and this was a big hit.

    I head of cauliflower cut into large florets
    6 tablespoons coconut milk – full fat
    5 cloves garlic
    1 tablespoon sriracha or to taste
    I tablespoon Thai red chili paste or to taste
    Salt
    1 tablespoon cornstarch or arrowroot
    Zest of one lime
    1 teaspoon (I used less) brown sugar

    Cilantro leaves and scallions for garnish

    Put the garlic, salt, cornstarch, lime zest, sriracha, chili paste, and brown sugar in a food processor or small blender and blend/pulse until finely chopped. Add the coconut milk slowly to incorporate.

    Marinate the cauliflower in this mixture for 20, 30 minutes or more.

    Bake in a 375 degree oven for 25-30 minutes until crispy and brown. You could also air fry. The second batch I did at 400 for 20-25 minutes and my son liked that one better. The second batch also marinated longer.

    When it comes out of the oven, toss with cilantro and scallions. Check salt to see if it needs a touch more.

    It’s seriously delicious. My kid requested it this weekend when he has some friends sleeping over so I bought two heads of cauliflower and will make a big batch tomorrow.

    ReplyReply
  12. 12
    RAVEN says:

    @MomSense: I’ve been making “mashed potatoes” from cauliflower.

    ReplyReply
  13. 13
    karensky says:

    TaMara, I want to buy your cookbook but when I link to the website and click on “order here” I am not sent anywhere, pls help. Tnx.

    ReplyReply
  14. 14
    WaterGirl says:

    deleted

    ReplyReply
  15. 15
    SectionH says:

    @geg6: OMG. You didn’t burn the house down, or maim your sister. Sounds on the Betty Cracker level of sister story, tbh.

    Damn, I haven’t been stoned in way too long. It’s even legal in CA now. If I ever get home again, I’m going down to Camino del Rio South and check all those stores… my son tells me they’re very kind to olds like me.

    I expect it costs a LOT more than a dime bag used to cost. Oh well. It helped back then if you grew it yourself, or knew your dealer.;-p

    ReplyReply
  16. 16
    Sab says:

    @cain: “American cheese” is not cheese, and therefore should not be in cheese sandwiches.

    This sounds delicious, but I like to add a bit of Italian spice, or oregano and basil to grilled cheese. I never thought of mayo. The whole point of a sandwich is multiple planes for mayo, so I should have figured this out years ago.

    ReplyReply
  17. 17
    cain says:

    I have a wonderful sandwich that a cook covered. It was a veggie sandwich, where I made homemade cranberry pickle (with indian spices) and put it on one side, mayo and cheese on the other and then put whatever veggies I wanted and I would grill it. It was super yummy.
    Vegetables can be pretty bland, but man, those cranberries packed a wallop + cheese and mayo added that moistness.
    My younger friends always tease me for using terms like “wallop”, my vocabulary is a mix of pre-boomer, boomer, gex x, and gen y with some hoosierisms, indianisms and west coasterisms. I am a mess. :D

    ReplyReply
  18. 18
    cain says:

    @Sab:
    I think what I meant is “processed cheese”.

    ReplyReply
  19. 19
    SectionH says:

    @RAVEN: Plz report. Flavor, texture, cooking instructions?

    Oh, and if you don’t see this until later, hope you and your wife and pups have a great parade.

    ReplyReply
  20. 20

    @cain:

    How dare you madam put mayo on grilled cheese! You’ll be hearing from my lawyer!

    Omnes is your attorney?

    ReplyReply
  21. 21
    MomSense says:

    @RAVEN:

    Yum! I haven’t tried that yet, but cauliflower rice is pretty tasty.

    ReplyReply
  22. 22
  23. 23
    MomSense says:

    @burnspbesq:

    I worked from 8 am to 730 pm today. I’m having peanut m&ms and red wine for dinner.

    ReplyReply
  24. 24
    SectionH says:

    @cain: I call it “melty cheese” stuff. And I don’t care. I know from good cheese too, but when I want melty cheese, I use it. Yeah, it’s processed, so it.will.melt.fast – and yeah, it’s hardly pure, but anyway. Sometimes it’s just fine.

    ReplyReply
  25. 25
    realbtl says:

    The only thing to add to bread and good cheese is bacon.

    ReplyReply
  26. 26
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @cain: C’mere. I have a grilled cheese with mustard and pickles for you.

    ReplyReply
  27. 27
    SectionH says:

    @MomSense: Red wine and chocolate? Go You!

    ReplyReply
  28. 28
    geg6 says:

    @Yarrow:

    The brownies were fine. LOL!

    ReplyReply
  29. 29
    MomSense says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA:

    OO and I are sympatico on clowns, Mayo, REO Speedwagon and Fleetwood Mac. All horrors.

    ReplyReply
  30. 30

    @RAVEN: Shredded cauliflower is also a good substitute for rice, I used to make spanish rice that even Madame liked.

    ReplyReply
  31. 31
    mrmoshpotato says:

    I’ve had a couple of notable failures, including pulling out the powdered sugar instead of potato starch to thicken a spicy veggie soup.

    Mmmmm….spicy veggie pudding!

    ReplyReply
  32. 32

    @MomSense: I’m with y’all on clowns and REO, Mayo has it’s place and there’s much worse than Fleetwood Mac

    ReplyReply
  33. 33
    PaulB says:

    I decided to make homemade lasagna for the first time. Formerly, I had always used Garlic Powder in my recipes, as that is what my mom always used but no, this time I was going to use fresh garlic because everyone knows the fresh stuff is better. The recipe called for two cloves of garlic, so I went to the store and bought two [somethings] of garlic.

    See, I didn’t know that garlic came in bulbs and that a clove was a small piece of the bulb. So I made my lasagna with two bulbs of garlic, which contained a dozen or more cloves each, 12 times what the recipe called for. This is one of those mistakes that isn’t immediately obvious to the eye or to the untrained cook, as the only hint was that there was a strong smell of garlic but I just assumed that was because the fresh stuff was stronger than the powdered.

    Even on first bite, it wasn’t immediately obvious, until a few seconds later when that garlic flavor really hit. My guests and I (fortunately, a couple of long-time, and very forgiving, friends) stopped after a couple of bites and ordered a pizza. The garlic flavor remained in my mouth for over 24 hours.

    ReplyReply
  34. 34
    geg6 says:

    @SectionH:

    The only thing better is the gyros and red wine I’m having for dinner. Local bar with great Greek food rocks!

    ReplyReply
  35. 35
    PaulB says:

    My other favorite mishap was when I made a mashed sweet potato casserole for the family, using my mom’s recipe, which called for three cans of yams. What the recipe didn’t say was that it needed three drained cans of yams. So I blithely opened the cans and dumped the contents in the mixing bowl, syrup and all.

    This one I should have caught in the visual stage, as it was a soupy mess, but I was a lot younger and hadn’t cooked much, so I figured it would firm up in the oven. It didn’t. It was inedible, as it really didn’t work as a soup or as a casserole, so we dumped it.

    ReplyReply
  36. 36
  37. 37
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @geg6: Wow. Just wow.

    ReplyReply
  38. 38

    @PaulB: I have a similar story but with ginger. My mom is great cook. I wanted to do something for her,
    She had gone back to school and was getting her degree in education. So I decided to make soup for her. It was a Chinese soup and I misread the amount of ginger.
    The soup was uneatable and bitter. Too much ginger, turmeric and many other spices can just destroy the dish.
    I once put mung beans in the pressure cooker when I was new to cooking, it became an inedible paste. Thankfully my housemates who were excellent cooks came to my rescue by sharing their dinner with me.

    ReplyReply
  39. 39
    Ruckus says:

    @PaulB:
    I was sure my sense of smell was gone about 5 yrs ago when I was making garlic shrimp for dinner and my roommates daughter asked me what I was making, from the other side of the living room. I was standing over the pan, searing the garlic, couldn’t smell a thing. Does make cooking a bit tougher.

    ReplyReply
  40. 40
    Barbara says:

    The tomato soup would be good with coconut milk instead of dairy milk, and it would also be vegan.

    ReplyReply
  41. 41

    The soup and grilled cheese look fabulous, and that video is hilarious. I loved the way the gnocchi kept popping even after he took them out of the pot.

    ReplyReply
  42. 42

    @cain: “Wallop” is a perfectly cromulent word. I had a friend back in Chicago who would buy a 4 oz. bottle of rum and two cans of Coke………he called it “Pete’s Personal Portable Packawallop”.

    ReplyReply
  43. 43
    burnspbesq says:

    @MomSense:

    You go, girlfriend.

    ReplyReply
  44. 44
    Barbara says:

    @PaulB: Yikes! That is pretty funny.

    ReplyReply
  45. 45
    burnspbesq says:

    One more return to review and then it’s time for me to fly.

    And yes, I’m sure y’all saw what I did there. But I respectfully submit that that was the one and only listenable REO Speedwagon album.

    ReplyReply
  46. 46
    MomSense says:

    @SectionH:

    Ha! The best combo is red wine with the Lindt dark chocolate with hot chili.

    ReplyReply
  47. 47
    cain says:

    @mrmoshpotato:

    @cain: C’mere. I have a grilled cheese with mustard and pickles for you.

    I’m intrigued. I hope it is dijon, there is no other kind of mustard.

    ReplyReply
  48. 48
    MomSense says:

    @Yarrow:

    Grape seed oil does a good job with grilled cheese, too.

    ReplyReply
  49. 49
    RAVEN says:

    @burnspbesq: They are from Champaign but my posse didn’t cotton to no hairbands in them days!

    ReplyReply
  50. 50
    NotMax says:

    Grilled cheese made using Muenster, melted butter brushed on the outside of the bread before grilling, mustard and a sprinkle of garlic powder on the inside, is awesome.

    Partial fail was baking gigundo pans of spinach ‘n’ cheese souffle in a commercial kitchen, enough to serve 250, which never quite firmly set up, so served spinach semi-goop. Which, once people put it into their mouths, agreed was mighty tasty.

    Most recent misadventure was several years ago, trying to doctor up the blahness of a very, very old #10 can of refried beans. Mistakenly mixed in a goodly amount of lime juice instead of lemon juice. Managed to salvage it with the addition of a combination of cornstarch, generous use of spices and lots of grated cheese, but it was a close call.

    While not really a fail this is a good spot to drop in the epic screaming matches witnessed between the head baker and the head meat chef while I was working at a large resort hotel*.

    The baker had a walk-in oven with racks that could rotate on tall spindles. The meat chef would stay late to sneak slabs of roasts into the oven before the baker came in, treating it as a very big rotisserie, which pissed the baker off no end as the early runs of baked goods then had a noticeably meaty character.

    Best cooking fail I ever saw was when a young woman (who was not all that familiar with the art of cooking) decided she’d pull out from the deep freeze and serve us all commercial food service stuffed chicken breasts, which came in individual foil pans and were also foil wrapped. How did she prepare them?

    Dropped them, frozen and as is, into the deep fat fryer. Whole lotta chicken, stuffing and greasy foil in the trash bin that night. Same young lady also once served venison stew, with fur still on the meat.

    *We all ate very well while a couple of us were working there, in charge of the food and beverage store room. The guy who delivered the meat took a shine to us and would signal us to come into the back of his truck. “You’re not on hotel property now, right? This is my property you’re standing on. Here, take these prime rib roasts and stash them in your car.” Fish guy would do the same, except we got big lobster tails by the cartonful. At one point semi-regular weekend visitors to where we were all living would say at dinner time, “What? Prime rib and lobster tail again?”

    ReplyReply
  51. 51
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @cain: Never tried Dijon before. Yellow mustard and pickle slices is good.

    ReplyReply
  52. 52
    Sab says:

    @burnspbesq: My only return left to do is mine, and I just can’t bring myself to crunch those numbers. Been getting the skank eye from spouse for last two days.

    ReplyReply
  53. 53
    chopper says:

    @geg6:

    that’s…fucking awesome.

    ReplyReply
  54. 54
    Paul in Saint Augustine says:

    Here’s something I made that was bad: runny scrambled eggs with sloppy joe meat.

    ReplyReply
  55. 55

    @cain:

    I hope it is dijon, there is no other kind of mustard.

    Elitist!

    ReplyReply
  56. 56
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @NotMax:

    Here, take these prime rib roasts and stash them in your car.” Fish guy would do the same, except we got big lobster tails by the cartonful. At one point semi-regular weekend visitors to where we were all living would say at dinner time, “What? Prime rib and lobster tail again?”

    LMAO! Wahhh prime rib and lobster! *shakes head*

    The meat chef would stay late to sneak slabs of roasts into the oven before the baker came in, treating it as a very big rotisserie, which pissed the baker off no end as the early runs of baked goods then had a noticeably meaty character.

    ROFLMAO! That’s hilarious.

    ReplyReply
  57. 57
    chopper says:

    @Sab:

    depends. the individually-wrapped stuff is garbage. regular ‘american’ cheese is cheese that’s been simply processed to make it melty. you can do it yourself with a little bit of sodium citrate. hell, you can even make some sodium citrate yourself with some citric acid and baking soda (tho that isn’t the exact same kind as the good stuff and doesn’t work quite as well). so you can take really good, hard cheddar, melt it and reform it into a block that tastes the same but melts like magic. great for everything.

    ReplyReply
  58. 58

    @karensky: Well that’s very odd, it should take you right here.

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07WCDD2TJ

    ReplyReply
  59. 59
    chopper says:

    @Yarrow:

    mayo works well in place of butter for toasting bread in a skillet. it seems weird but it works. really it’s mostly oil and egg, so it makes sense.

    ReplyReply
  60. 60
    NotMax says:

    @John Revolta

    Party I once attended (back when disco was hot) featured a punch, served in a brand new clean trash can, made up of several gallons of vodka, several cups of sugar and only the juice from several jars of maraschino cherries, garnished with lemon slices.

    ReplyReply
  61. 61
    cain says:

    @mrmoshpotato:

    @cain: Never tried Dijon before. Yellow mustard and pickle slices is good.

    Missing out.. it’s so good. The mustard is more of a german/french style and not the american processed yellow one.

    ReplyReply
  62. 62
    cain says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA:
    :D :D :D :D

    That’s how we portlanders are! :-)

    ReplyReply
  63. 63
    Sab says:

    @cain: That sandwich sounds awesome.

    ReplyReply
  64. 64
    cain says:

    @NotMax:
    If you drank any of it, I’m surprised you remembered the party.

    ReplyReply
  65. 65
    cain says:

    @chopper:
    You can get citric acid cheap at an Indian store.

    ReplyReply
  66. 66
    chopper says:

    @cain:

    i get it from the bulk section of the local coop-type store. mix it with baking soda in an almost 50/50 ratio by weight and you’re good. works great for making strong cheddar melty for homemade mac and cheese. you can even turn it into cheese powder if you want to put in some extra work.

    ReplyReply
  67. 67
    NotMax says:

    @cain

    High tolerance can be a boon.

    ;)

    ReplyReply
  68. 68
    LarryB says:

    @cain: Mayo, nyet! Mustard, da!

    ReplyReply
  69. 69
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @cain: I know what Dijon mustard is. :P

    ReplyReply
  70. 70
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @SectionH:

    @geg6: OMG. You didn’t burn the house down, or maim your sister. Sounds on the Betty Cracker level of sister story, tbh.

    Yes, and while it’s a fabulous story on its own, just imagine how brilliant it would be with a series of Betty Cracker’s illustrations. Caldecott Award-worthy, for sure.

    ReplyReply
  71. 71
    NotMax says:

    @cain

    Or just look for bottles labeled Sour Salt in the spice aisle.

    Also good for helping remove burned-on stuff from pots. Put in some hot water, mix in some sour salt and let soak overnight.

    ReplyReply
  72. 72
    kimp says:

    I once made a huge pan of lasagna for a charity dinner and used a number 10 can of ketchup , instead of tomato sauce. It was inedible, but we sold every piece. Some people LOVED it. Go figure.

    ReplyReply
  73. 73
    Mary G says:

    My mom shredded sharp cheddar cheese, mixed in mayo, garlic power & chilis then spread it on bread and grilled it. Yum.”

    This video has nothing to do with cooking, but it’s cute:

    The dogs keep jumping the fence, a solution has been found🐶😁 pic.twitter.com/uERAWa3F37— Owen (@TheOwenMyers) October 11, 2019

    ReplyReply
  74. 74
    MomSense says:

    @geg6:

    👋👋👋👋👋

    ReplyReply
  75. 75
    cain says:

    @Sab:
    Seriously.. a youtube chef featured it. She recently reached out to me about how to make it again. I need to reach out to her actually and get her that recipe.

    ReplyReply
  76. 76
    cain says:

    @chopper:
    That’s amazing I will need to try that out!

    ETA
    check out this link – https://www.huffpost.com/entry/nacho-cheese-sodium-citrate_n_6108794

    ReplyReply
  77. 77
    p.a. says:

    A regular eff-up of mine; when I started trying to eat healthy I reduced sauces to thicken instead of using any of the starch/fat methods, but still fully seasoned as I had previously. SALTY. Took a while to break that habit.

    Have an OCD friend who hits me up for recipes and gets upset when I can’t give him exact volume instructions. “How much turmeric?” “Ummm Idunno, enough to seem right.” “WTF seems right!!??”

    ReplyReply
  78. 78
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @MomSense:

    I’m having peanut m&ms and red wine for dinner.

    This is why you will always be a top poster here. Whereas had you said white wine, you’d be pied.

    ReplyReply
  79. 79
    cain says:

    @NotMax:
    Oh neat.. I didn’t know about this one. Sounds wonderful, I will look for sour salt. I assume you can just use sour salt to make the melty cheese?

    ReplyReply
  80. 80
    MomSense says:

    @Steve in the ATL:

    🍷🍷🍷

    MomSense +2 thinking of 3

    ReplyReply
  81. 81
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @NotMax: Sour salt is what you really need to make a good borshch.

    ReplyReply
  82. 82
    Elizabelle says:

    I needed to share this earlier. Live feed of Bombino at the Richmond Folk Festival, Tuareg shred/blues guitarist. Amazing guy.

    Enjoy. He’s probably got another 20 minutes.

    ReplyReply
  83. 83
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA:

    I’m with y’all on clowns and REO, Mayo has it’s place and there’s much worse than Fleetwood Mac

    Concur

    ReplyReply
  84. 84
    cain says:

    @MomSense:
    Go for it. It’s a shit show out there :D

    ReplyReply
  85. 85
    Elizabelle says:

    @kimp: You just had to be better than the competition.

    @MomSense: On my first glass of red, but catching up with you. Do listen to that guitarist!

    Might go see him live tomorrow. Should have ventured out but just not in mood for crowds tonight and the live feed is excellent.

    ReplyReply
  86. 86
    Jeffro says:

    @cain: @Yarrow: I thought the only real, true no-gos in the culinary world were peas in the guacamole and raisins in the potato salad? Yuk yuk yuk (double entendre intended)

    If it gets much colder, I will have to flip a coin between making tortellini & spinach tomato soup or some chili. Summer took way too long getting out of here, it’s time for fall food!

    ReplyReply
  87. 87
    Jeffro says:

    @realbtl: OR…thin slices of green apple or red pear. Good bread, good cheese, and either of those is just fantastic.

    ReplyReply
  88. 88

    Charles Nelson Reilly (does anyone still remember him?) told an hysterical story on Johnny Carson one night about cooking a dish for a dinner party and grabbing a box of rice to dump into the boiling base and to his horror the rice box was full of ants. He spooned off as many as he could as the dish continued to boil then added some ground pepper and parsley and served it. Carson and the studio audience were choking with laughter but i always wondered if any of the guests at that dinner party were watching that particular show!

    ReplyReply
  89. 89
    cain says:

    @Jeffro:

    @cain: @Yarrow: I thought the only real, true no-gos in the culinary world were peas in the guacamole and raisins in the potato salad? Yuk yuk yuk (double entendre intended)

    I went to a BBQ in Zacatecas, MX after a conference and the folks were all making various things. The question of guacamole came up, and I volunteered to make it. There was this pause.. and you know they were processing that request and I can almost hear it “Gringo thinks he can make our food” haha :-) My guacamole is good, but I don’t know if a Mexican would like it, that’s true. Their guacamole was fine. It’s not like it’s sophisticated food.

    ReplyReply
  90. 90
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    @geg6: I think you’re gonna win with that one. Who’d want to live it down? It’s got everything!

    ReplyReply
  91. 91
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @mrmoshpotato:

    Never tried Dijon before. Yellow mustard and pickle slices is good.

    Ain’t no doubt you’re from Chicago!

    ReplyReply
  92. 92
    cain says:

    @Cathie from Canada:

    Charles Nelson Reilly (does anyone still remember him?) told an hysterical story on Johnny Carson one night about cooking a dish for a dinner party and grabbing a box of rice to dump into the boiling base and to his horror the rice box was full of ants. He spooned off as many as he could as the dish continued to boil then added some ground pepper and parsley and served it. Carson and the studio audience were choking with laughter but i always wondered if any of the guests at that dinner party were watching that particular show!

    Back in the day, that happened all the time in India. The remedy was to put it in the sun and they’ll take off. Ants, cockroaches, rodents, all running around.. cuz thats how it was.

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  93. 93
    Ruckus says:

    @Mary G:
    That was hilarious. And a stroke of genius.

    ReplyReply
  94. 94
    cain says:

    @Steve in the ATL:

    Ain’t no doubt you’re from Chicago!

    Chicago dog is amazing…

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  95. 95
    NotMax says:

    @cain

    That I do not know. Sour salt is citric acid crystals (it contains no salt).

    I use it when making sweet ‘n’ sour dishes. Can also be used in place of vinegar or lemon juice in general cooking.

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  96. 96
    NotMax says:

    @Jeffro

    Stand back, gonna try to push some of the heat here through the internet to you. Officially near 96 yesterday, who knows what today. Breaking records left and right for October.

    ReplyReply
  97. 97
    Karen Easterbrook says:

    OMG, I still cringe. I cook Christmas dinner for my extended family, and I go all out – the rest of the year it’s healthy food, simply prepared, but not at Christmas! (former caterer here) Every year, I try a different dessert, and this year it was a Trifle recipe from Gourmet. I dislike alcohol, so once the pear liqueur went into one of the two crème layers of the trifle, I didn’t taste test. But it looked pretty! That year, we sat over dinner too long, so I packed dessert to go for my brother and family so they could get on the road. My poor sister-in-law decided to not wait and to eat quickly before they left. Well, she murmured a few things about “delicious” and “wow”, cleaned her plate, and out the door they went. About an hour later the rest of us decided to have dessert and OMG. It was just god awful. Horrible. Damp. Boozy. Terrible texture. Completely inedible. Worst thing ever to come out of my kitchen. We had a great time coming up with how to describe it, and finally agreed on “The Wet Boozy Mess”. But seriously, not that much liqueur went in, but the thing tasted like straight rut gut something. And my poor sister-in-law stood there, in front of all of us, and out of misplaced politeness ate the whole thing. I never could figure out how I went wrong – I think it was just a really bad recipe. But it was baaaaaaaaaaaad.

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  98. 98
    Ruckus says:

    @p.a.:
    I believe that one of the steps to being a decent cook is to learn spices, what they do to certain foods and when a little is a lot.
    In the navy we had an E7 cook who was very close to his 30 yrs when I reported aboard. He purchased food from the same navy store as every other ships cook but did he ever know what to do with it. Best 2 months of my enlistment. You never asked what was being served you took it, you ate it, you really, really liked it. About 5-6 months after he retired we almost had a mutiny, people talking about breaking into the gun locker and actually taking over the ship. Some of them lifers. Same starting foods, far different end results. You eat it only because it is very slightly better than dying of starvation out at sea.

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  99. 99
    rikyrah says:

    Everything looks delicious😋😋😋

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  100. 100
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @geg6:

    The only thing better is the gyros and red wine I’m having for dinner. Local bar with great Greek food rocks!

    You are also on the approved list.

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  101. 101
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    @MomSense: Awful week here, and I’m having a late dinner of peanut butter M&Ms with a local IPA.

    ReplyReply
  102. 102
    cain says:

    @NotMax:
    Apparently we are breaking records here in Oregon. It got to freezing last couple of days which super early for October.

    ReplyReply
  103. 103
    Mousebumples says:

    My most memorable food prep screw up was the first time I made guacamole. I had no idea what a ripe avocado was, so I bought 3 avocado’s that were definitely not ripe. I was bringing this to a family gathering later that day, so I used a food processor to break up the avocado. (I knew enough try remove the pits and the rind, at least!)

    I also had no idea about proper proportions for guac, and I added too many tomatoes relative to the number of avocados. The texture was off, but I got lots of compliments on my “avocado salsa” that day!

    For a unique guacamole recipe, I love adding a ripe mango to avocados, cilantro, and lime juice. Definitely a sweeter guacamole but I quite enjoy it!

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  104. 104

    @NotMax: Sounds like the youngin’ and fam left just in time.

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  105. 105

    @Steve in the ATL: I will have no wine with dinner.

    ETA: At least that guarantees I won’t have white wine with my M&M’s.

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  106. 106
    Ruckus says:

    @cain:
    Southern CA is burning down. Literally. That big fire called the Saddleridge fire? Started about 1/10 mile from my old house. In a picture from one of the news helicopters, I could see the house. I understand that none of the houses in the area burned. However the wind, 20-25 mph with gusts to 50 mph spread it rapidly. Picture of where I used to live – last night. My house is to the left of the houses in the front. That is Saddleridge road in the picture. The fire started just to the right of that road, just in the bottom of the picture. Nice place to live, on a clear day we could see Catalina island.

    ReplyReply
  107. 107
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho: at least you can watch Georgia play tomorrow!

    ReplyReply
  108. 108
    Mike in NC says:

    @Ruckus: We had an outstanding wardroom mess mgmt specialist (cook) on my destroyer. He was an E-6 ex-Army guy who wore the CIB on his dress blues. Everybody agreed he was definitely a great chef.

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  109. 109
    J R in WV says:

    OK, this is another disaster. I think everyone is aware of my disaster with fresh pineapple in an upside-down-cake aka pineapple skillet cake… the enzymes in the pineapple digest the batter, creating a slimy bad-smelling mess. The only good thing about it is that it’s so vile you won’t take it to the dinner party where it was supposed to be dessert for the crowd.

    And so this is the other great disaster I recall… not just something coming out less than optimal. Terrible. [Oh no — I just thought of another terrible disaster, I guess I’ll save it for another time~!!~

    Many years ago, when we were still living in the 1895 jenny-lind farmhouse, with yard-bird chickens and livestock, I was home while wife was at work. I made a special nice meal, and before she came home I used those free-range eggs to make a lemon meringue pie.

    We had those great eggs, with really golden yolks, to make the lemon custard really special golden, and the fresh gathered that morning egg whites, to make a meringue that was just so smooth. I had fresh lemons to squeeze for the juice and zest, and home made butter for the crust… so all was perfect.

    Dinner was a stir fry with snow peas and other fresh vegges from the garden, and it was really nice. We enjoyed that a lot, and then I went to get the pie, and a glass of cold fresh whole milk from our cow. You can see that the pie had a lot of potential going for it. Fresh everything!

    We each had a nice looking slice, the meringue was so smooth, swirled, and browned perfectly, it was beautiful! We nearly simultaneously took the pointy end bite of the slice of pie into our mouths. Then we both went “Eeeeuw!”

    I jumped up and ran into the kitchen, where the fresh squeezed lemon juice was still in the pyrex measuring cup, and not in the lemon custard part of the pie! I left the lemon juice out of the lemon pie!

    You could tell it was supposed to be a lemon pie from the zest in the meringue… but otherwise it was a sugar custard pie, nothing but sweet. Terrible, in other words. I was glad we weren’t still hungry, it wasn’t that kind of disaster, but otherwise, just no dessert at all.

    I have won pie baking contests at summertime parties, really I have. Other cooks said “But I used whole wheat flour for MY crust!” and I could say, “SO did I…” But I was really glad no one was there for this pie but me and wife.

    Glad to have this history to share with all of you.

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  110. 110
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: good call. White wine might work with Skittles, so you’re smart not to drink at all.

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  111. 111
    burnspbesq says:

    @Sab:

    Mine is done, and we got well and truly fucked by Trump. Between the SALT limit and not being able to itemize, we went from a $7k refund last year to owing$719.

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  112. 112
    NotMax says:

    @BillinGlendaleCA

    Yeah. Dinner last night was a bunch of black grapes. Was too wiped out from the oppressive heat after 5½ hours gallivanting around town, paying bills and traipsing through stores and markets, to do any more than desultorily throw what needed to be refrigerated or frozen into one or the other of those compartments and leave the rest of the unpacking for today. Couldn’t even muster enough get-up and go to make a sandwich. Just an hour ago got around to divvying up some things had tossed into the fridge into more reasonable sizes and thence the freezer.

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  113. 113
    Ruckus says:

    @J R in WV:
    You were just trying to get it off your chest weren’t you?

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  114. 114
    Aleta says:

    I found that the Welsh cheese they call Red Dragon, which has whole mustard seeds in it, makes an astounding grilled cheese although tbh I’m still wondering if it was that good because a little overaged manchego accidentally got in.

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  115. 115
    NotMax says:

    @J R in WV

    just thought of another terrible disaster, I guess I’ll save it for another time~!!~”

    Aw, c’mon, take pity on those who sent their tenterhooks out for sandblasting this week.

    ;)

    ReplyReply
  116. 116
    geg6 says:

    I am proud to say, I think I won this thread. 🤪😛

    ReplyReply
  117. 117

    @J R in WV: After my father retired, my mother was making sweet pickles and needed some peppers(mild peppers). She sent my father to the store and he returned with jalapenos, I’m not sure that she knew exactly how spicy these peppers were until the pickles were done. While neither of them would eat those spicy pickles, I’ loved them.

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  118. 118
    Ruckus says:

    Supposed to be tagged for Mine in NC at #108

    Destroyer or DDG? Not that it makes any diff, just wondering. Mine was DDG18.
    I also remember being out to sea for extended time and as we did a bit of North Atlantic and winter Atlantic crossings, we had several rough water periods. Once towed a DE that lost all power for about 30 hrs before an ocean tug came along and took the tow. Poor bastards on that ship had it rough.
    The point I started writing was about the extra walking protein in the saltines they put out for those smart enough to snack on them during rough water. Didn’t bother you if you didn’t look at what you were eating.

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  119. 119
    Dan B says:

    Back in the 70’s six guys lived in the Hay Student Association collective house. We each cooked one night a week. One night i forgot to cook the broccoli and, as everyone sat down to dinner, I threw the broccoli in the pressure cooker. Once it was really hot I remived the lid without releasing the pressure. Steam and steaming broccoli covered the drop down fluorescent ceiling as everyone gawked in horror at me, also covered with bits of steaming broccoli. It resembled a bed of kelp.

    Pressure cookers still scare me.

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  120. 120
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @Steve in the ATL: LOL

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  121. 121
    Ruckus says:

    @geg6:
    I think you are absolutely correct!
    Come on down and get your prize!

    ReplyReply
  122. 122
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @cain: True. Can’t go wrong with a Chicago-style hot dog.

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  123. 123
    NotMax says:

    @geg6

    By a mile, minimum.

    @J R in WV

    When it comes to memorable food smells one would much rather forget, encountered one such at that same resort hotel. There was a vestibule one had to enter by way of its own heavy door in order to reach the doors for the walk-in fridges and freezers, sort of like an airlock on a space ship. That space was also used for crates of bananas while they ripened.

    Anyhoo, two or three times a week one of the featured items at the employee mess was ham hocks. Which very few availed themselves of. So two or three times a week big pans of hot ham hocks were placed in that vestibule to cool before being refrigerated.

    The combined aromas in an unventilated space of ham hocks and bananas when one entered the vestibule was a … unique olfactory assault.

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  124. 124
    Mike in NC says:

    @Ruckus: USS King DDG-41. We always were amazed about reading what a hard-drinking, woman-chasing SOB that guy was in real life.

    ReplyReply
  125. 125
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @NotMax: Mmmmm….hammy bananas.

    ReplyReply
  126. 126

    @Mike in NC: My father had a rather unpleasant meeting with Adm King.

    ReplyReply
  127. 127
    Ken says:

    @NotMax: Half the fun will be seeing how JR in WV works his cooking disaster story into some other post. “Yeah, Trump’s speech to the National Prayer Breakfast was disgusting, but if you want real breakfast horror….”

    ReplyReply
  128. 128
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    @Ruckus:

    The fire started just to the right of that road, just in the bottom of the picture. Nice place to live, on a clear day we could see Catalina island.

    Oh Catalina
    It’s a mile away from wherever you are
    Oh Catalina

    : )

    That’s the jingle for the Catalina Island Company, I got to listen to it a few years ago while getting tickets to the East End Humvee tour. It is a beautiful island

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  129. 129
    Amir Khalid says:

    Off topic, sorry, but The Who’s official YouTube channel just posted the classic live performance at Shepperton Studios of Won’t Get Fooled Again. Off-the-scale awesome.

    ReplyReply
  130. 130
    Jeffro says:

    @NotMax: ugh no please don’t…gimme 45-55 degrees all day any day

    ReplyReply
  131. 131
    NotMax says:

    @Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)

    Old enough to remember when a clear day in California meant you could see across the street.

    ;)

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  132. 132
    J R in WV says:

    OK, you asked for it, you got it.

    Went to make a Geman chocolate cake, was looking for a butter substitute for the icing. Found some Crisco in the fridge, used it. Was saved Crisco that had been used to deep fry fish. Unique flavor, fish-chocolate cake. OMG terrible.

    Long time ago… wife had saved the shortening and I didn’t notice the — odd — texture of the fat… The chickens didn’t mind the odd flavor. I don’t think they have tastebuds…

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  133. 133
    NotMax says:

    @J R in WV

    wife had saved the shortening and I didn’t notice

    Holy mackerel, talk about getting scrod!

    “I made a special dessert, just for the halibut.”

    :)

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  134. 134
    cain says:

    @Ruckus:

    Southern CA is burning down. Literally. That big fire called the Saddleridge fire? Started about 1/10 mile from my old house. In a picture from one of the news helicopters, I could see the house. I understand that none of the houses in the area burned. However the wind, 20-25 mph with gusts to 50 mph spread it rapidly. Picture of where I used to live – last night. My house is to the left of the houses in the front. That is Saddleridge road in the picture. The fire started just to the right of that road, just in the bottom of the picture. Nice place to live, on a clear day we could see Catalina island.

    Oh wow, crazy… at least the houses are still standing. With it all burning, we’re safe for a few years yes?

    ReplyReply
  135. 135
    chopper says:

    @NotMax:

    luckily he flounder a new cake.

    ReplyReply
  136. 136
    Aleta says:

    I read about pink peppercorns and then got some. Expensive but I thought OK, they’ll be extra good, an extra delicious spicy pepper.

    (It’s not really pepper, I learned afterward.)

    I’d just bought the instant pot and I also had a whole lot of vegetables, so I thought I’d make an deep vegetable broth with some left over to freeze. I put in lots of vegetables, water, and the pink peppercorns … I kept throwing in a few more … and then a few more of the pinks. Cooked it all down …. the broth was inedible. OK, I’ll just take half of the broth out, add more vegetables and water and cook again. Inedible. Halved it again, doubled the water, tried again. Better take out all the peppercorns. Throw out some vegetable pulp. And again. Again. Tried to balance it out with this then that, each time taking out half and adding water …a little vinegar…lots of potatoes….cider… a heap of basil,… apples might absorb…some lentils… any other thing I could think of to dull the flavor. By then I was removing not 1/2, but 3/4 or more, of the broth each time I started over. I came to despise the overpowering pink flavor that wouldn’t soften. The kitchen counters had filled up with bowls and glass jars of inedible broth removed each time. It became some kind of deja vu nightmare of past cooking in my teens and earliest 20s when I became trapped in growing piles of kitchen debris. I finally realized I had to do the opposite of what I’d been doing. Freeze it all in jars and add the smallest amount when I would cook something like a pot of lentils. And I threw some out, which hurt but was a relief.

    The lentils I made later, with a small bit of that broth, were so good that I imagined making a big batch and taking it to the next party to wow my friends with what a mysteriously good cook I was. (Instead I later threw more of it out ….) I think I still have a jar or two in the freezer.

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  137. 137
    chopper says:

    @cain:

    to make homemade sodium citrate you’ll need to mix citric acid and baking soda in a 21/25 ratio by mass. it won’t work quite as well as the stuff you buy online but it works.

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  138. 138
    debbie says:

    Not the kind of fail you’re talking about, but my cousin knocked 23 members of the family down with her matzo ball soup (she was running late, made her usual cauldron of soup, and didn’t let it cool down enough before covering and refrigerating it). Probably the worst case of food poisoning (and I’ve had more than my share) I’ve ever had.

    Her matzo ball soup is the best I’ve ever had, but it took me a couple years to want to have it again.

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  139. 139
    SectionH says:

    .

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  140. 140
    prostratedragon says:

    Cubano sandwiches from hole-in-the-wall upper Manhattan shops converted me to grilled sandwiches with a thin layer of mayo inside and/or outside. It’s more a matter of texture than flavor, since one doesn’t really taste the mayo. Creates a crisp, light edge to the sandwich.

    ReplyReply
  141. 141
    Ruckus says:

    @NotMax:
    Our business in LA was just around a mile from downtown. We gauged the days by what/how far you could see.
    The mountains, 25-30 miles away, great day, that was maybe 2 or 3 times a year. The multi story buildings 1-1 1/2 miles away, that wasn’t a bad day. Across the street, be lucky if felt you were getting any oxygen at all.

    ReplyReply
  142. 142
    Ruckus says:

    @cain:
    It depends on the weather. We’ve been here before. We get what are called Santa Ana winds, they blow from the northwest, off the deserts rather than from offshore. They are very warm and very dry. Add in less moisture from rain the season before and all the local, natural vegetation has high oil content and very little moisture. Heat, wind, dry, and a spark and it catches and spreads fire like crazy. Embers burn hot and stay burning for a while and the winds 25-30 mph and the gusts up to 50 mph blows those burning embers for miles. That fire you see in the pictures is natural veg in hard to access areas. It goes on for miles.

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  143. 143
    JAFD says:

    Mayonnaise: with fresh red ripe Jersey tomatoes on Portugese rolls, eaten with juice dripping into beard = ambrosia
    In tuna salad – necessary
    BUT
    most commercial mayonnaise has too much sugar, not enough vinegar or lemon juice.
    get Mrs. Schlorer’s, or ShopRite’s store brand
    OTOH
    “A unique tradition among the better families was the interest which men took in cooking: often the men marketed for meat, and, curious fact, it was their prerogative to make mayonnaise.”
    (Philadelphia: Patricians and Philistines, 1900-1950 By John Lukacs)

    ReplyReply

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