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It floors me when... I spend days planning and hours preparing a fantastic meal (not to mention the cost for the finest ingredients)... and my guests turn up with a single bottle of super cheapo Vin Gutrot - leaving me to provide not only the food but the wine for the evening as well!!!

I prefer to choose the wines myself. Unless you have a guest with excellent taste in wine who asks to bring something to compliment the meal, I would just say thank you for the wine and consider it a gift to drink at another time. Why take chances when you have already put such time and effort into your meal. :wink:

Ha! I've had the host do that exact thing to me. I bring my very best bottle of wine - say, a high-quality Chianti for a wonderful Italian meal he plans - only to have him set it aside and serve his own bottle...some garden-variety low-end wine - Bonny Doon Ca del Sol, for instance, or white zinfandel...

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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"I hate sugar," he yodels, "sugar is eevil!" He goes on to expound on the shortcomings of processed sugar: all the nutrients have been removed, and what's left is far worse than nothing. Home-made ice cream? Nope. Home-made pastries? Nope. They have that eeeevil sugar. Regular sugar is bad, bad, bad for one's health, even in small quantities.

Then, it's time to make salad dressing. What goes into it? Cheap white balsamic vinegar.

'Uh, dear? Do you know how they made that vinegar so sweet, so cheap?' :laugh:

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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It floors me when... I spend days planning and hours preparing a fantastic meal (not to mention the cost for the finest ingredients)... and my guests turn up with a single bottle of super cheapo Vin Gutrot - leaving me to provide not only the food but the wine for the evening as well!!!

I prefer to choose the wines myself. Unless you have a guest with excellent taste in wine who asks to bring something to compliment the meal, I would just say thank you for the wine and consider it a gift to drink at another time. Why take chances when you have already put such time and effort into your meal. :wink:

This is what I do. I always bring something I like to drink when invited to someone's house for dinner. I never expect that they will open the wine on the evening, but I simply cannot show up empty handed! I also think it is impossible for guests to know what type of wine to match with the meal before they get there, so it is better to plan the meal and wine as the host.

Edited by Syrah (log)
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It floors me when... I spend days planning and hours preparing a fantastic meal (not to mention the cost for the finest ingredients)... and my guests turn up with a single bottle of super cheapo Vin Gutrot - leaving me to provide not only the food but the wine for the evening as well!!!

I prefer to choose the wines myself. Unless you have a guest with excellent taste in wine who asks to bring something to compliment the meal, I would just say thank you for the wine and consider it a gift to drink at another time. Why take chances when you have already put such time and effort into your meal. :wink:

This is what I do. I always bring something I like to drink when invited to someone's house for dinner. I never expect that they will open the wine on the evening, but I simply cannot show up empty handed! I also think it is impossible for guests to know what type of wine to match with the meal before they get there, so it is better to plan the meal and wine as the host.

I usually bring wine that is expected to be a part of the meal when dining with family. They do not like to choose the wine so I try to work with their menu. Last year I picked a wine to take to a friend's for dinner. I had asked about the meal in advance and chose a wine I was really hoping to drink. She put my wine aside and served a wine which, in my opinion, did not compliment the meal at all. I guess it was my own fault and a bit nervy on my part to expect her to serve my wine. I didn't ask if I could bring the wine and she obviously had selected what she wanted to serve. We also brought a cheese course and she opened a wonderful port which was perfect with the cheese. Happy ending! And I bought another bottle of the wine I wanted to try and enjoyed it at home. Live and learn. :wink:

KathyM

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I am floored by my MIL's and her daughters' cooking.

I am a bit of a picky eater, but dear God, the food is an atrocity.  The last meal we had there was mashed potatoes, cooked 30 minutes before the rest of the food was ready, smashed in a bowl without any seasoning whatsoever and left on the table to cool while the roast beef and frozen mixed veg were cooking.

The roast beef was done to a lovely gray colour and was cut in inch-thick slabs.  I did try to save the poor veg by saying that they did not need to be boiled rapidly for 20 minutes, but to no avail.

The topper was dessert.  Fresh strawberries and (cheap) vanilla ice cream, you say?  What could be wrong with that?  Well, MIL wanted to pour boiling water over the $5.00 a pound strawberries to "soften" them up for the ice cream.

Heathens.

And if I see food in the fridge again there that has an expiry date of 3 years ago, I'm saying something.  That's just ridiculous.

:blink:

I don't remember my mother inviting you to dinner. But you must have been there, because you described exactly perfectly the roast beef. Thick 1" slabs that were fibrous and unable to be chewed. Overcooked vegetables...

And the fridge contents is the clincher. I found an egg carton in there that the eggs were hollow and had turned black. Only 3 years expiration date ago?? She must have used up the older stuff first.

doc

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-- but I'll do with Heinz until I get my in-home ketchup factory going -- makes a good base. If you've got a source through your bro -- pump him for it! And ask him to include his recipe, birdie53. :wink:

Actually, while not the brother, I make homemade ketchup, and I generally follow the Joy of Cooking recipe for tomato catsup. It is very very good. BTW: An "old" Joy of Cooking at least from 1970's I think.

The whole mace has always been the hard thing to find, but Penzey's carries it.

doc

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I totally agree with you. People act like they are so amazed and almost envious (but still never seem to change)

How true is that? I am a very simple cook, but some people still look at me like I'm Gandalf when I've produced a cake, a pot of mulled cider, hell, even whipped cream from scratch. :raz:

I mean it... some people don't know how to make whipped cream. :shock:

I guess it's like any other craft... people are willing to pay insane amounts of money to get a custom made gift basket, wreath, floral centerpiece, or other items that are easy and cheap to make with a little knowledge, practice and the right materials. I shouldn't be surprised that they would also find it impossible to make a muffin, a pie crust, or a cheesecake themselves. Or pay overinflated prices to take some of the labor/guesswork out of it... take a look at Stash Tea Company's selection of scone, cake and bread mixes.

Floors me.

"Give me 8 hours, 3 people, wine, conversation and natural ingredients and I'll give you one of the best nights in your life. Outside of this forum - there would be no takers."- Wine_Dad, egullet.org

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once upon a time i didnt know how to make fresh whipped cream either....but i have this wonderful aunt up in montana..who back in the early 80's....was getting fresh milk from a neighbor lady who had a dairy cow...and she would get these big wonderful jars of fresh milk with the cream still floating on the top...she showed me how to seperate the cream and not only did we make home made whipped cream but we also made fresh butter....the process is not real hard to do...

most of us dont have access to a dairy cow...but we have grocery stores that carry heavy cream...and ive experimented with that too...got woderful results..no big surprise all things considered...though it does floor me that in the past...my own children were shocked that mom knows how to do certain things they supposedly only do on a farm .. :laugh:

oh and about being volunteered to do something just because you enjoy doing it....i used to get roped in that way and discovered that when i wasnt asked before hand...i didnt enjoy it nearly as much as if i had offered....once i figured that out...next time i was volunteered without being asked...i said...no.....now im asked first ...sometimes the word no has got to be a firm part of your vocabulary...doing what u love should be a joy and should never feel like its an obligation...

Edited by ladyyoung98 (log)

a recipe is merely a suggestion

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What amazes me is how closed "minded" the north american palate has become.

Mealks that have been "dumbed down" for our palates have become the defacto standard by which the real versions are measured.

Have a peice of tuna prepared by a Japanese master chef; try a steak with no sauce, butter, seasonning - just the damn meat; how about a slow braised osso bucco with nothing but the juices from the meat and veg.

You can buy a roast in a damn bag now! That's appalling.

Give me 8 hours, 3 people, wine, converstaion and natural ingredients and I'll give you one of the best nights in your life. Outside of this forum - there would be no takers.

:sad:

Homer: Are you saying you're never going to eat any animal again? What about bacon?

Lisa: No.

Homer: Ham?

Lisa: No.

Homer: Pork chops?

Lisa: Dad, those all come from the same animal.

Homer: Heh heh heh. Ooh, yeah, right, Lisa. A wonderful, magical animal. (The Simpsons)

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I totally agree with you. People act like they are so amazed and almost envious (but still never seem to change)

How true is that? I am a very simple cook, but some people still look at me like I'm Gandalf when I've produced a cake, a pot of mulled cider, hell, even whipped cream from scratch. :raz:

I mean it... some people don't know how to make whipped cream. :shock:

I guess it's like any other craft... people are willing to pay insane amounts of money to get a custom made gift basket, wreath, floral centerpiece, or other items that are easy and cheap to make with a little knowledge, practice and the right materials. I shouldn't be surprised that they would also find it impossible to make a muffin, a pie crust, or a cheesecake themselves. Or pay overinflated prices to take some of the labor/guesswork out of it... take a look at Stash Tea Company's selection of scone, cake and bread mixes.

Floors me.

Whipped cream?? really? what do they use instead??

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Whipped cream?? really? what do they use instead??

Isn't it obvious...partially hydrogenated oils in a tub, or the cream in a can that tastes like propellants and is too fluffy. We always used to do fresh whipped cream for Thanksgiving pies, or St. Pat's Irish coffee, and as ridiculousy simple as that is, that kind of spoils you for the other options.

I'm a whipped-cream evangelist. It's fun to see the look on people's faces when they taste a dollop of something that looks like CoolWhip, but tastes incredible. Yes, it's freaky.

"Give me 8 hours, 3 people, wine, conversation and natural ingredients and I'll give you one of the best nights in your life. Outside of this forum - there would be no takers."- Wine_Dad, egullet.org

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My recent "floored" experience is the opposite of the normal "why do you bother" situation many have mentioned (and that I, too, have heard all too often).

Last week I was busy most evenings, so we did a lot of eating out. On a couple of these nights, there were no leftovers, or at least no leftovers I wanted to face again.

At lunchtime on one of these no-leftovers days, my officemate and I went to the employee cafe to grab a salad from the salad bar. Alas, someone had left the lettuce too close to the fridge condenser and it had frozen to translucence. Ew.

Knowing better than to gamble on the cafe's other options, we hopped in the car and headed to the grocery store around the corner. We both bought frozen entrees: Jen's was a "wet" veggie burrito from one of the chi-chi organic brands, and mine was a bowl of asian-style peanut noodles from Seeds of Change. We took 'em back to our work kitchen and heated them up, smugly proud that we hadn't resorted to eating at one of the mediocre restaurants close to the office.

As I was stirring my noodles midway through their nuking, one of my co-workers came up beside me and saw what I was doing and said: "Aren't you a gourmet cook?"

"Yeah?"

"Why on earth would you eat *that*?"

I looked down at the bowl: Whole chunks of red and yellow peppers, carrots, tofu that didn't look like moldy sponge, noodles with some tooth to them. Admittedly, I wouldn't serve it to company, but for an emergency meal, it looked pretty damned good.

The snappiest retort I could muster was: "Uh, it's organic and actually pretty tasty."

What I should have said was "Oh, are you offering to cook me a 3-course lunch when I haven't planned ahead?" Sheesh...

I actually used to keep sandwich fixings in the work fridge for such emergencies, but stopped when I discovered fork-marks in my mayonnaise (!).

~Anita

Edited by ScorchedPalate (log)

Anita Crotty travel writer & mexican-food addictwww.marriedwithdinner.com

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I just saw something yesterday which still has me sputtering. Country Crock is "Proud to offer their new sidedishes: Mashed Potatoes, Rice Casserole", and one other I did not catch. They come in the same containers as the margarine.

Why bother?

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I just saw something yesterday which still has me sputtering. Country Crock is "Proud to offer their new sidedishes: Mashed Potatoes, Rice Casserole", and one other I did not catch. They come in the same containers as the margarine.

Why bother?

Isn't that what everyone uses Country Crock containers for anyway? Storing old leftovers that won't neccessarily ever get eaten?

He don't mix meat and dairy,

He don't eat humble pie,

So sing a miserere

And hang the bastard high!

- Richard Wilbur and John LaTouche from Candide

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It floors me that sometimes people don't seem to read the original questions that are posed in the start of the threads on eG.

In threads about 'What will you make that is different for Thanksgiving than turkey' there are answers that argue for the original turkey. Then there are answers that discuss turkey gravy. The actual posts that encourage or support something that is actually 'different'...as the person that started the thread requested...are very few compared to those arguing for not doing what he wanted in the first place.

In a thread about a restaurant murder when the question is asked 'Is there anything that might seem like a pattern that could be found' when answers are given to this question, one is reprimanded for being unsuitably coarse in not sitting down on the floor and crying, instead, for the murdered fellow. (Seems a better idea to me to try to find a way to avoid the same thing happening next time, but no...let's sit and cry instead. It is more appropriate.)

In a thread that asks for new ways to do Xmas pudding, as in 'deconstruction'...or creative ideas....again....posts are made to argue against the idea of other people who might actually post a creative idea or two. Or more.

It floors me that it seems this medium of communication falls more into the category of making posts to support one's own personal doings rather than actually reading and answering the requests that are specifically made. And it floors me that people seem to consistently argue for the mediocre.

Wandering off-topic into areas that actually say something or offer some real, important information do not floor me. But this other stuff, does.

Edited by Carrot Top (log)
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Ah, Carrot Top ... I see the eGullet honeymoon is over. (Insert wistful-smile emoticon here.)

At a certain point I guess it hits most of us that eGulleteers are really ... um ... normal human beings after all. I'm sorry folks. I even include myself in that pedestrian description. But despite that fact (or because of it, of course), I learn an incredible amount of stuff on this site. Just like I learn an incredible amount of stuff from other normal human beings. Will wonders never cease? (I certainly hope not.) :smile:

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I helped a friend make a chocolate wedding cake last weekend. She had never made a chocolate wedding cake, and furthermore had never made chocolate ganache or chocolate glaze. First, I was floored that she thought that her chocolate "buttercream" (i.e., confectioner's sugar, shortening, cocoa and fake almond extract) tasted better than the chocolate ganache recipe I gave her. Hers tasted like wet, greasy artificial almond sand, while the ganache was meltingly smooth and had much better flavor (even though, against my advice, she bought fake chocolate, the kind that replaces the cocoa butter with palm kernel oil and adds bunches of chemicals).

The chocolate glaze was not shiny and I was again floored when she insisted that the recipe was to fault and not the fake chocolate. Both recipes came from The Cake Bible, BTW.

I was further flabbergasted when she thought that the chocolate glaze would even out the layers and would cover up the defects in the cake. She always leveled her other wedding cakes with her "buttercream" icing. The layers were so domed in the middle I feared they would slide off each other. Not to worry, the fake chocolate glaze was like cement and glued the layers together.

In the end, the cake didn't look as bad as I had imagined (luckily the lights were dim, and sugared fruit hides a multitude of sins). It didn't look good, though.

But after all that I was floored because the bride said it was "exactly what she wanted." Had it been my wedding I would have cried. (well I did cry at my first wedding, although not about the wedding cake, but that's another story...)

Expectations are low here. Maybe I should start doing wedding cakes.

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Whipped cream?? really? what do they use instead??

Isn't it obvious...partially hydrogenated oils in a tub, or the cream in a can that tastes like propellants and is too fluffy. We always used to do fresh whipped cream for Thanksgiving pies, or St. Pat's Irish coffee, and as ridiculousy simple as that is, that kind of spoils you for the other options.

I'm a whipped-cream evangelist. It's fun to see the look on people's faces when they taste a dollop of something that looks like CoolWhip, but tastes incredible. Yes, it's freaky.

We don't have cool whip in Australia and from what I've heard that can only be viewed as a blessing.

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If anyone read my post on November 10 about my in-laws' cooking, we were subject to these atrocities again over the weekend.

Roast beef burned to a crisp (but it's only burned on the outside, not in the middle!). Dear God, if it had been burned in the middle, I don't know what they would have done to it, put it in a nuclear reactor, perhaps?

Underdone mashed potatoes, left to go cold. The usual cooked to death frozen mixed veg, and something called zucchini casserole, which looked like the bastard sister of turkey stuffing and could have been used for spackle.

Whole wheat buns, shaped and baked before a second rising. Gravy that was almost black, and highly salted, from the burnt beef drippings.

Two days later, we were served the sad remains of all of this for supper, along with a shrimp ring that had been left to unthaw all day and overnight. We did not touch the shrimp, pleading dislike of seafood (as if!), and picked at the meal.

As we had phoned ahead to find out the plans for the night, and were told what slop we would be eating, stopping at the grocery store was a must. I bought some pizza pockets (I know, but at least the kids would eat something, and I didn't know what else to get that could be microwaved), and while I was in the store, my husband went and bought 2 large orders of fries at McDonald's that we scarfed down before getting there.

My MIL was quite offended that we didn't want to eat the lovely leftovers. Oh yes, and there were a couple of pieces of blackened something that they called lasagna that had never seen cheese or tomato sauce. She also stated that the kids would not get to eat anything else until the leftovers were finished. The hell you say. They ate pizza pockets, poor things, and I did too, albeit surreptitiously so as not to get snarked at again. There would have been one hell of a fight, and I was not in the mood.

The grilled cheese sandwiches and canned cream of mushroom soup for lunch the next day were edible, but just barely. But the grilled sandwiches were not grilled, they were fat-free cheese slices put between stale bread and toasted in a toaster oven. No frying pan or oil were to be found. I choked them down by dipping them in the lumpy lukewarm soup.

I was, and still am, floored. I have never been so glad to get home in my life. When you add the old air mattress, and old ragged bedding we slept on for the one night, it was a weekend from hell. Thank God my husband saw reason, and we stayed in a motel room for the first 2 nights. Otherwise I may have had to kill him. They were most offended that we wouldn't stay in my MIL's smoke-filled, mold-infested, ramshackle house, but an asthma attack is just not worth the pleasure.

Some people.

:shock:

Edited by saskanuck (log)

I don't mind the rat race, but I'd like more cheese.

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Whipped cream?? really? what do they use instead??

I'm a whipped-cream evangelist. It's fun to see the look on people's faces when they taste a dollop of something that looks like CoolWhip, but tastes incredible. Yes, it's freaky.

Last year at Thanksgiving I talked my mother into picking up a container of cream, but she still insisted on serving cool whip. "It's too much trouble." "Mom, where's the mixer?" Needless to say that I'm much too young *sarcasm* to be able to handle the mixer myself, and she ended up making it. The real whipped cream was much appreciated. :biggrin:

This year's goal is butter instead of margarine, particuarly for the Christmas cookies....

Joanna G. Hurley

"Civilization means food and literature all round." -Aldous Huxley

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Mabelline, I can see my MIL not having any tastebuds, as she's smoked heavily all her life. But her daughters have no excuse. They said that it was an awesome meal. Awesomely bad, yes.

The one sister did do some baking, which saved me as it wasn't too bad. Otherwise I would have starved. We did end up going for dinner between the bad meal and the bad leftovers, but it was to a crappy pizza chain restaurant that serves mediocre food. It was still much better than the home cooked food.

I still have teethmarks in my tongue from biting it so hard. And having bedding to sleep on that was fit for more than the dog's house would have been nice too.

I don't mind the rat race, but I'd like more cheese.

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