Saturday, January 2, 2010

Corn Chowder

Today is the second day of the new year, and to start it off right, I decided to make a pot of soup. It just so happened that I had a pint of heavy cream left over from the potato soup I made on Christmas Eve. I don't want to toot my own horn, but that was some awsome soup. It's hard to taste bad when the ingredients include a pound of bacon, a whole white onion and a pint of heavy cream amongst other things. I used a recipe called the utimate potato soup recipe. I guess you could call it heart-attack soup too- it's full of all kinds of things that aren't good for you.
Some people don't like cream soups. I have a friend who gags at the sight of any milk product. My daughter Jen was thinking of wrapping up a quart of milk for him at Christmas as a kind of gag gift, which in this case it would be- literally. It's kind of ironic- his wife is nursing their baby. The very sight could be a best case/ worst case scenario. It might be fun to watch, but the thought of what the kid was eating could make you sick. Anyway, I guess I won't be inviting them down to dinner tonight.
I realized after I started putting this blog together that I must have a thing for milk products. I never really thought about it before, but so much of what I could cook has some form of milk in it; Mexican quiche, potato soup, corn chowder, custard pie. There is probably some clinical name for this particular obsession. It probably started way back when I was a kid. I liked Milk Duds and Milky Ways and and milk chocolate, but then again I liked black licorice also and I never developed a desire for Ouzo. ( A licorice flavored alcohol that I ran across in Greece). Ah well. I guess some things are beyond explanation.
The dog was watching me while I cooked. We have a black dachshund named Rigby who loves to eat. He's been fixed, so I guess the only thing he has left to look forward to is eating. The moment the refrigerator door is opened he's charging into the kitchen looking for a snack. Today while I was preparing the ingredients, he scarfed up some potato peelings and a few chuncks of red pepper. So far his menu hasn't been a problem, but if gas becomes an issue, it will be back to the Iams and Pedigree dog food. How boring.
Don't worry, I'm not going to be turning this blog into a cooking thing. Julia Child I am not. However, I don't mind cooking on occasion and I've had a relatively good bit of success with some of the soups I've made. Winter is a good time for soup. Its fairly economical to make and usually doesn't take too much time. For some reason though, I seem to use almost every utinsel at my disposal. For this particular concoction I needed a frying pan for the bacon, a sauce pan for the potatoes, a Dutch oven for the soup itself, two bowls, a two quart measuring cup, a 1/4 cup measure, a knife, a cutting board, two spoons- one to stir and one for tasting, a grater for the mozzarella cheese, a plate to drain the bacon on and a cup for my coffee. Of course I can't just leave a big fat mess for Jan to clean up- I'd be booted out of the kitchen; so I have to wash all the dishes. I should hire an assistant.
One of the odd things about this whole cooking thing, is that in 72, when I joined the navy, I took an aptitude test to see where I would fit in. They came back and told me that I could be a commissary man. That was the navy word for cook. Well, I went along with it until I got into boot camp and saw that the cooks were up at four o' clock every morning sweating over a hot stove, stirring enormous stainless steel pots and listening to people complain about the food. They dressed in Tshirts and white pants and almost all of them were sweating profusely. I guess the sight must have scared me enough to try a little harder, because when I tested again the scores were much higher and I was offered a position as a radioman, radarman, sonarman or torpedoman. I opted for radarman- it sounded cool. Anyway, I spent my entire four year navy career without once having to stir a pot or flip an egg. That's good. Had I done it for a living those many years ago, I probably wouldn't be wanting to do it now, and then who would spell my wife?
Besides, I don't look good in white pants.

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