Monday, February 20, 2006

Have a Nice Glass of Paint Remover

First of all, let me apologize in advance for what I"m sure will turn out to be a very unprofessional layout of this particular posting. I just haven't figured out the whole photos thing yet, but I felt this story needed some visual aids. So cut me a little slack.

So my friend Kevin moved back to NYC from the great state of Arkansas a few months ago. And he came bearing a gift for me. This:
In case you can't read what it says above, it says "South Dakota Centennial Cookbook, 1889-1989," which is a compendium of a bunch of recipes from state legislators to help commemorate the centennial. For some reason, he had found this among a pile of his dead grandmother's books and decided I would get more use out of it than she would. Kevin knows I have quite an attachment to my cold, barren, snowy home state of South Dakota, if only because I get so much pleasure out of poking fun at it.

Gleefully we paged through the book to discover such culinary delicacies (and really, truly, I am NOT MAKING THIS UP): "Diabetic Cucumber Salad," from Sen. Henry Poppen of DeSmet, "The Senator's Walleye Wonderful," from George Shanard of Mitchell, "Pink Ham Loaf" from Peg Lamont of Aberdeen and "Broccolli Feast" from none other than Leonard Andera of Chamberlain. If "Diabetic Cucumber Salad" ever becomes my favorite recipe, the one I would choose above all others to submit to a cookbook, someone please shoot me. Inexplicably, the cookbook also includes a recipe for Paint Remover, under the "Candy, Miscellaneous and Preserving," section.

"Broccoli Feast" sounded like such an oxymoron that I just had to see what it was all about. And, as you can tell from this picture, Sen. Andera looks like a satisfied customer!

In case you can't read the recipe, basically what "Broccoli Feast" consists of is packages of Stove Stop stuffing, broccoli, a mysterious, goopy concoction called "white sauce," and cheddar cheese.

While my roommates certainly weren't enthusiastic about their guinea pig status regarding Broccoli Feast, the dish was at least good for a few laughs, if not gustatory ecstacy. Here's my roommate Laura, about to deliver the verdict.

"Hmmm," Laura said. "It doesn't really taste like a Broccoli Feast per se, it tastes more like...broccoli, with stuffing, with some cheese and white goop on it."

"It's REALLY salty," Erin said. "I replaced the bullion cubes with too much salt, I guess."

"Fuck, I guess I"ll try it," said Lacy. "That looks disgusting."

He had a point.

Needless to say, the Great Broccolli Experiment hasn't exactly sent me running back to the South Dakota Centennial Cookbook whenever I'm in need of a hearty dinner, although I"m a good little pioneer so someday I'll plunge back in and keep trying and hopefully share the results with you here, assuming the creations don't clog my arteries on contact and cause immediate myocardial infarction.

At any rate, the cookbook was one of the better gifts I've received lately since I 1) love to cook and 2) love to poke fun at South Dakota, which only I can do because I grew up there.

So, big smoochies to Kevin for making my day.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know the guy who submitted the Diabetic Cucumber Salad, and I would just say in his defense that his wife submitted that without his knowledge. I appreciated your post. haha

1:05 AM  

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