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Worst meal at someone's home - Part 2


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I am going to a raw vegan potluck this weekend. I can't wait to report back something memorable to this thread.



So----how was it? Anything memorable, unpleasantly or otherwise? I've eaten WITH vegans, but never when the entire meal was so strictly concocted.

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The worst meal I've had a someone's home was at my cousin's a couple of years ago----this gray gruel that she proclaimed to be gumbo----thin, gray broth, hardly a shrimp in sight, a few okra seeds floating around, and she forgot the rice! I seasoned it liberally with Tabasco and fixed myself a sandwich when I got home. Haven't let her cook for me since. :raz:

I may be in Nashville but my heart's in Cornwall

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I am going to a raw vegan potluck this weekend. I can't wait to report back something memorable to this thread.

So----how was it? Anything memorable, unpleasantly or otherwise? I've eaten WITH vegans, but never when the entire meal was so strictly concocted.

It was a lot less exciting than I thought it would be. Mainly, it was just a bunch of salads and sauces made out of avocados (one was actually very good) and such. Blah. Someone brought "nut patties" which everyone just RAVED about, but I found bland and dry and tasteless. They were like eating nuns' penance.

I ate a bit to be polite, then left and got myself some real food. The thing about these people that was kind of scary is how very earnest they are. They kept going on and on about "live" food and "enzymes" and how GREAT they felt. Eh, wouldn't enzymes be broken down by your stomach acid and never really hit the intestines, anyway? I was afraid to ask because they were just SO FORCEFULL, but that's what my basic understanding of biology tells me.

I dunno, I suppose if you took enough supplements and somehow find a way to get enough protein, this would be a good way to lose a whole lot of weight in a really short amount of time, but I honestly don't see how anyone could sustain that diet. While at the shindig, I kind of looked around wondering how many of them secretly ate burgers and chocolate cake in their car without telling anyone. I know that there is no way I could live off the food that was served at this thing. It was fine for salad courses, or a light summer meal, but it would get incredibly old after a while.

-Sounds awfully rich!

-It is! That's why I serve it with ice cream to cut the sweetness!

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My EX Sister In Law, invited me and my ex to a homecooked Spaghetti dinner.

She presented us with two plates on which a pile of skettis were placed. On top of that, cold store brand sauce and about 1/2 cup cold cooked ground beef. She then handed us each lil trial packages of grated parm cheese...

3 weeks later I made my thousand layer lasagna (paper thin layers of homemade pasta, homemade sauce, 4 cheeses and sausage) and she never invited us again. But always wanted to eat here.

Edited by GlorifiedRice (log)

Wawa Sizzli FTW!

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You people obviously never met my ex-mother-in-law.

She holds the record.

The two of us, my ex- and I, were together far, far too many years, and during that time we ate an unbearable number of meals at her house, at my ex-husband's insistence.

The meals all run in together.

Well, certain things do stand out.

You know how the Japanese will gently heat a pot of dashi containing a block of tofu and a multitude of baby eels, which burrow into the tofu and cook there? I was served the opposite, an ear of corn untrimmed of its rotten spots (no vegetables were ever trimmed of their rotten spots) where the cornworm tried to get out during the boiling process, and almost made it. I can still see it looking at me. I have an iron stomach, but that was one meal I didn't finish.

In our first years of acquaintance and marriage, we used to eat there every Saturday, Sunday dinner, and most Sunday nights. Saturday was always Friend's canned baked beans, the cheapest hot dogs available (I forgot to tell you that everything served here was always the cheapest available, though money was not tight), small grey hockey-puck-like burgers [The texture only was like that of a hockey puck. It would have been too much effort to make them flat and regular in shape--so they resembled UFOs.) made from the cheapest hamburger available, and white bread. Always cottony white bread.

Sunday supper was the meal that we stopped going to first. Occasionally she would fix something fresh, ie, new, but often it was something like chili--leftover beans from Saturday night, with leftover MASHED hot dogs, and a packet of chili mix.

Sunday and holiday dinners were the real standouts. Meats were generally put in the oven the evening before on the lowest setting (fluctuated between 'dessicate' and 'incubate'). One popular meat was 7 bone chuck, a cut that for years was sold for less than fifty cents a pound. For a reason! It was only about 25% meat! It was lightly floured, and baked in a pan covered with foil until the grease rose halfway up the meat. There was very little actual meat in those bones. His father would sit at the head of the table and make a big show of carving the "roast". At least once I ended up with a bone and a nodule of gristle as my portion. Yes, the gravy was poured directly from the pan into the gravy boat, and not degreased, so there was at least half an inch of grease floating on top for people to pour on their plates and sop up with the white bread.

Chicken cacciatore was popular. Chicken backs and necks (packed with equal parts of carcass fat blebs) at the time sold for $.12 a lb. at the local market. She would put several pounds of them into a kettle, add potatoes and unseasoned tomato sauce, and simmer it until the bones fell apart. You got to pick the vertebrae out of your teeth, too, more fun! One year we all piled into a borrowed school bus to drive down to Florida. They packed food to start the trip, including a crockpot of chicken cacciatore. Son #3 put his hand on the pot as he entered the bus. "Oh, boy, still warm!" He said. A sinking feeling traveled from my stomach to my abdomen, but the cacciatore was, in fact, never heard of again. I suspect it was pitched when the tentacles growing out of it encircled the leg of a front seat passenger.

Turkey was served for the holidays, especially Mother's Day, the day when the wimminfolk cook up an extra big meal for the menfolk, who sit around, patting themselves on the back for being so good to Mom. Turkey was baked for about a day in a roasting pan covered with foil, with some water added. If the water didn't cook away, the turkey steamed in the pan and essentially disintegrated ("Oh, boy, tender!). If the water did cook away (and it might have been cooked away for a long time by dinnertime), the turkey looked like it had been napalmed. I had once said that I liked dark meat, so thereafter they gave me a leg, whole, because you couldn't have sliced it without a carbide cutoff saw. It was hard on the jaw. The white meat, on the other hand, was so powdery dried out that they served a jar of salad dressing at the table to help people choke it down.

Vegetables were cooked until they were tender enough to cut with the back of a spoon, and garnished with a large quantity of store-bought coarsely ground pepper that looked like nothing but cigarette ashes.

She was an old-fashioned cook, raised by an elderly female relative, as was my mother, but there the resemblance ends. My mother was able to follow a recipe. My MIL could neither follow a recipe nor choose one. So, often, as the family "gourmet", I would be served all sorts of delicacies that the dog wouldn't have eaten. A dish of canned mushrooms in canned unseasoned tomato sauce might be set at my place at the table. Jello salad with a generous dollop of store-brand salad dressing that had been unrefrigerated after opening. A standout was the baguette she bought, hollowed out the slices, and refilled with a mixture of cottage cheese, dry Italian dressing mix, and red food coloring. It tasted as bad as it looked.

The dessert that comes to mind was the pudding she served that was lumpy and stringy. How do you do that to a box of pudding? She told me the directions said to "stir like crazy". This gave me some major insight into the minds of people who can't seem to get recipes to work for them. You see, actually, what the box said was "Beat for 15 minutes on high speed with an electric mixer." Spoon for a minute, electric mixer on high for 15, same difference.

I remember weeks spent at the summer house with a turkey sitting out on the table for people to pick at til it was gone, and weekends there with neither fruit nor vegetable, white bread only: the fiber-free experience.

I can't end this without mentioning breakfast. My ex was the eldest of 4 boys, and the other three were still living at home when I first met him, so I got to sample some breakfasts. Bacon ends and pieces (those big thick hunks of fat and meat) were pan-fried until cooked but unrendered. This was served with scrambled eggs that eager diners generously slathered with imitation Velveeta chunks and grape jelly, so as to leave jelly in the imitation velveeta and imitation velveeta in the jelly. Bleh.

After our divorce, my ex-husband remarried, and his new young wife (who basically has no food taste or cooking skills, but is at least cognizant of this fact) refused to eat there except for special occasions. So I can amuse my daughter with these stories, but she has few of her own, and did not have the opportunity to participate in such a character-building experience as I did in my tender years.

I have not read this entire thread but I cannot see how any subsequent post can eclipse this one for the graphic quality of the descriptions.

Terrific writing. :smile:

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YAAAAAYY!!!! Someone resurrected our prototype, our zenith, the heights to which we can all aspire (but not without a stomach pump).

It's too good to stay mustering away in the archives; it should be read annually, at least. (Though that eel part gives me the squicks).

Go, Katherine. And where've you BEEN?

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The worst thing I was ever served was a birthday cake that my husband's best friend's wife baked for him. Nothing elaborate. It looked ok. Just a simple white 9x13 cake in the pan with chocolate frosting.

You couldn't cut through that frosting with a chain saw. And while the cake looked higher in the middle than in did on the sides, the only thing higher was the frosting. Once we finally broke through the frosting thunder dome, the cake inside was more of a gooey slop in the middle.

To this day I don't know how she did this to frosting, but I bet NASA would love to know. It would make a great heat shield on the Space Shuttle.

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  • 1 month later...

The worst meal I have ever had is on a regular basis is with my husband's childhood friends.

One time we were invited to an 80th birthday party for his mother at a seniors home we had use of the kitchen, I suggested that everybody bring a designated dish, salads, casseroles, desserts etc.

I was told it was taken care of.

When we got there, we had to buy $10.00 tickets for the event. We paid ten dollars each. On the tables before the dinner, there were bowls of chips and no name dip. Then the dinner came on.

It was catered. Frozen everything. The meatballs had this grey glop on them. Scalloped potatoes were from a package, and tasted so chemical like. The cutlets were tastless and shriveled up. The perogies had this thick chewy dough. The no name cold cuts she bought herself from Superstore, were watery and flavorless, sitting in a plastic bag for months.

They also had huge tubs of gooey, icky potato salad and pasta salad. The coleslaw was bright green and so onion like, the dressing was a mystery dressing that was sickingly sweet.

There was just enough hot food for one serving. My husband who dosen't complain much, said it was the worst food he has ever tasted.

The room was so brightly lit, I was getting a headache, yet they had dimmers. They also brought three bottles of wine that were sitting there in their house for months, half consumed already, for us to drink.

To top it all off, we had already donated $30.00 towards the T.V that they asked for.

There were 80 tickets printed and only 18 people showed up.

At the cottage, she begged us this weekend to it keep simple, no fussing, she said. Everything they eat is from the no-name frozen boxes. When they barbeque, they don't like grill marks. Everything is so over-well done, you can't tell what you are eating.This weekend we are going to be treated to frozen perogies baked in canned cheddar cheese soup and weiners. When dinner is served, she stands and watches that we don't take too much, because her two boys that are in their 40's might want second helpings. Both are divorced, not remarried.

When I bring food, they have this look of horror, such as spinach salad, anything with garlic, anything they are not familiar with. Potatoes with peels on are a no-no. Barbequed vegetable are not even considered, a wasted of propane.

Mmmm. I can hardly wait this weekend. :wacko:

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I haven't been back here for a while, it's fun catching up. :)

I remembered a meal a while back of the toughest, most dried out and intensely gamey mutton I'd ever had in my life. I can deal with lamb that's a bit gamey but this was anothr league. Dessert came - compote of stewed dried figs which is nice. Here village folks still eat some things (like this) out of a single bowl, everyone has a spoon. Fine, till grandpa wanted to feed the baby some figs. He fished around in the compote with his fingers till he found a piece suitably small, which he popped into the baby's mouth (already crusty from other things). Of course there was as much outside the baby as in the baby. Granpa solved this by squeegee-ing the goo off baby's face with his fingers, then licking it off his own fingers. Then back into the bowl for some more fig for baby! :blink: Um...I'm full thanks....

The vegan potluck account sounds so familiar; I have a neighbor who was vegan for a long time though as that's very difficult in Turkey he's adjusted. So much of the "doctrine" is based on pseudo-science, i.e. the "science says we evolved to be vegan, to eat entirely raw food," etc. As if we stopped evolving at some point and that's that.

Anyway he was talking excitedly about a favorite dish, "raw lasagna." The noodles were replaced by thin slices of zucchini which had marinated for 2 days in olive oil, oregano, basil, garlic, onion and I think lemon juice, the filling was also a highly-spiced puree of fresh tomato and onion, and the "sauce" was ground almond, lemon and...? It almost sounded good but it almost made me gag. Salty, sour, slick from all the oil, intense old raw onion and garlic flavor. The irritating thing was all the talk about how healthy it was. :P What's sad is that actually a lot of vegetarian and even vegan food is (or can be) delicious, but for lots of the more 'doctrinal' vegetarians flavor really seems to be second priority, so they spend so much energy convincing themselves that the raw oat hull lentil tofu loaf is divine. ;)

"Los Angeles is the only city in the world where there are two separate lines at holy communion. One line is for the regular body of Christ. One line is for the fat-free body of Christ. Our Lady of Malibu Beach serves a great free-range body of Christ over angel-hair pasta."

-Lea de Laria

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I was taught the same way, and teach my sons also. Gripes need to be aired, but only among those who will understand and treat it as just a way to let off steam. Allways temper your discontent with something nice to add, for yourself as well as the one you are dissapointed in.

ETA that sounded preachy, didn't mean to be. :blush:

Edited by nonblonde007 (log)

Brenda

I whistfully mentioned how I missed sushi. Truly horrified, she told me "you city folk eat the strangest things!", and offered me a freshly fried chitterling!

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This weekend we are going to be treated to frozen perogies baked in canned cheddar cheese soup and weiners.

I'm having trouble getting past this...seriously..you will have to eat this? Can you take pictures?

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Bowing before the historical greatness of this thread, I have to submit my own horrifying memory. My grandmother can certainly have her high points (anything in the baking department, especially red velvet cake!), but sometimes she tries to branch out as far as meals are concerned. Now, she is a 70-year-old southern grandma, cooking since she was probably 4, and excells in all things fried, if that gives you any indication of her cooking style. One evening she called and invited me to dinner, saying that she had something new for me to try, and it was the best things she had ever put in her mouth (her most common phrase). I agree, but already hear the low, building, horror-movie music building in my head. I get to the house, open the door, and the smell alone literally brought me to my knees. After recovering from the initial shock, I worked up the courage to enter the house again, and this time managed to make it inside to talk to her. "Clam chowder," she said. "They had canned clams on sale at the IGA, and I just thought they looked so good I couldn't pass them up." Needless to say, I didn't stay for dinner...

"Something about being in florida takes the edge off

laziness seduces you, invites you to take your shoes off and put your feet up, and whispers in your ear that nothing really matters

everybody else is having fun, playing golf, boating, lounging in the sun

it's hard to feel urgency about anything"

-Lee Irby

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Okay, now it's time for my contribution.

Funnily enough, all my worst meals have been here in France. But to be fair, that probably has something to do with me being vegetarian. French people for the most part are just uninterested in vegetables.

My husband had to travel a lot for his basketball career and his coach and the rest of his team were all big gourmet eaters. I've sampled some great regional cuisine with them... some not so great. Like one time we were at a huge banquet catered by the famous Lenotre... supposedly the "best" caterers in France. Everyone was eagerly anticipating the fancy meal to follow. The coach proudly announced that he had specifically ordered a vegetarian meal for me. Well, the meal arrived and it included some sort of fish, a slice of quiche and a small, shriveled up omelette. An odd combination, don't you think? I gave the fish to my husband and ate the omelette, saving the quiche for last as I love quiche. But I almost spat out the first bite. It tasted like poison. It had been poisoned with a massive dose of salt! And another thing. It was a chickpea quiche. Basically a plain quiche with a few whole chickpeas thrown in (and about a tablespoon of salt). A bizarre idea. And there was the coach beaming at me asking me if I liked the meal! I tried to choke down the rest of that quiche, but I just couldn't.

Another time we ate at a hotel after driving for five hours to get there. I was starving, but this time there was no vegetarian meal for me. The coach had already arranged steaks for everyone else so I said I'd just make do with the sides. Well, the sides were plain overcooked spaghetti mush, and mashed potatoes. I had copious amounts of both. The potatoes were good, of course, but pasta is another thing which is rarely done well here.

Like the time I had to go to a picnic at work. Everyone had to bring something and I was particularly looking forward to one guy's famous pasta salad. I love pasta so I thought there was no way I wouldn't like it. Well, it consisted of the usual overcooked mushy pasta, mixed with a few sliced pickles and some walnuts!! No dressing, but he brought a bottle of olive oil along for anyone who wanted it. Not that this was anywhere near as horrendous as some of the creations described in this thread... but how could anyone brag about something like this?

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Hee... that reminds me of the time I was working in Paris, and someone ordered sandwiches for lunch... I *should* have ordered the jambon et fromage, but I was feeling idiotic and ordered a vegetarian sandwich instead. Vegetarian sandwich = tuna salad. :laugh: But then, I'm not a vegetarian, so it didn't matter much to me other than being jealous of the ham!!

...wine can of their wits the wise beguile, make the sage frolic, and the serious smile. --Alexander Pope

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I am going to a raw vegan potluck this weekend. I can't wait to report back something memorable to this thread.

So----how was it? Anything memorable, unpleasantly or otherwise? I've eaten WITH vegans, but never when the entire meal was so strictly concocted.

It was a lot less exciting than I thought it would be. Mainly, it was just a bunch of salads and sauces made out of avocados (one was actually very good) and such. Blah. Someone brought "nut patties" which everyone just RAVED about, but I found bland and dry and tasteless. They were like eating nuns' penance.

I ate a bit to be polite, then left and got myself some real food. The thing about these people that was kind of scary is how very earnest they are. They kept going on and on about "live" food and "enzymes" and how GREAT they felt. Eh, wouldn't enzymes be broken down by your stomach acid and never really hit the intestines, anyway? I was afraid to ask because they were just SO FORCEFULL, but that's what my basic understanding of biology tells me.

I dunno, I suppose if you took enough supplements and somehow find a way to get enough protein, this would be a good way to lose a whole lot of weight in a really short amount of time, but I honestly don't see how anyone could sustain that diet. While at the shindig, I kind of looked around wondering how many of them secretly ate burgers and chocolate cake in their car without telling anyone. I know that there is no way I could live off the food that was served at this thing. It was fine for salad courses, or a light summer meal, but it would get incredibly old after a while.

My in-laws were Vegan for a couple years and were fanatics about the healthful benefits of it. I was cool with a meal here or there as they usually consisted of beans and rice in some combination: soup, salad, etc. They did have a chocolate cake that was somehow made with prunes and beets as I recall that was surprisingly very good. I doubt your friends sneak burgers if they are so militant because the fat is awfully uncomfortable for their system: cramping, gas, and um... the sqirts. Actually, we went on vacation to the Caribbean with them and they brought a whole suitcase of instant vegan food. Ew. Talk about buzzkill. They always had gas and hogged the bathroom. Ugh. Reason enough to not be Vegan in my book.

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OK, why is it that every time I go to my in-laws house for a meal, they don't even start cooking until we get there??? We were invited to breakfast at 8 today. We got there at 8 and they didn't know what they were going to make yet. We ate after 9- in shifts- and my hubby did most of the cooking. WTF-over???? :wacko:

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Oven baked well done sirloin at my grandmother's one year. Now, my mom's mom is a fantastic cook, but she's of the school that meat should have no blood left in it, and so much more excels at hte likes of ham and roast beef. I got it down, but I didn't much enjoy it.

Funnily, I had a similar meal at an old babysitter's (old as in she was, and old as in it had been some time since she babysat me) same style sirloin with fluffy mashed sweet potatoes and some other things, and rather than being regrettable, I'll treasure the memory, as it was the last, as I recall, time I and my family spent with her, and since she's moved to be with her family, probably won't see the woman again unless it's looking into her casket. (Hah, how's that for the most morbid response award winner)

Context I suppose, is more a player than we may realize.

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my grandma on my dad's side "bonne maman France". is a pure product of the 60's and although she's French, her repertoire is quite innovative(her tupperware recipe booklet is a fixture of the kitchen) and, dare I say, scary... "crème d'avocat & crevettes", basically per person, 1/2 an avocado, 100ml cream, ketchup, lemon, s&P, 1 tbsp mayo, 3 baby shrimps scattered on top..that's the appetizer..then "pain de chou-fleur"which basically consists of caulflower with gelatin, mayo and tuna, the 2nd app'...main course? "poulet à l'arachide et mangue", basically peanut & mango(?????)-stewed chicken with buttered rice...then salad with lettuce, potatoes, and a cream mayo dressing..then cheese(about 6 different kinds)... finished with a "gateau Alsa", which is one of those mixes to which you add oil & water, before baking/assembling/freezing & seving.....now. sunday lunch usually finishes around 3pm and you must consider the 4'o'clock cuppa tea or "sirop à l'eau" with the obligatory ""tarte aux prunes" or "beignets" (fritters)....

All this to say that being French doesn't mean you're a foodie or necessarily "doomed" to be as thin as a model!

Anyways, I've always felt lucky and praised my grandmother for being so involved, active and generous with her time when it comes to family gatherings, however, cooking on the lighter and probably more time-consuming side would have been way more aèppreciated by us all,....especially the daugthers, granddaughters and DIL's :raz:

Still, merci bonne maman :wub:

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My wife's friend invited us over for an evening of dinner and games. Sounded like fun. When we got there, we started with some drinks and started playing Pictionary. As the night wore on and we grew hungrier, we came to the realization that they weren't making us dinner, and had already eaten with their children beforehand. We stopped at Wendy's on the way home for the most delicious fast food we had ever eaten...

"It's better to burn out than to fade away"-Neil Young

"I think I hear a dingo eating your baby"-Bart Simpson

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I had some pretty gut-wrenching fare at boarding school. Worst of all were the sweet suety dumplings with butterscotch sauce. The nuns made me stay at the table long after lunch till I ate mine, in spite of my protestations that they wouldn't stay down. On the way out of the dining hall I chucked my dinner and ran... I could probably sue them now :biggrin:

Website: http://cookingdownunder.com

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The floggings will continue until morale improves

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