Sunday, February 01, 2009

How To Ruin a Dinner Party

I love having people come over and visit. In fact, I'm one of those weird people that really, honestly loves having people just call and say, "Hey, what are you doing? We're in the neighborhood, can we stop by?" I'm social, which is a good thing because Troy is really not and if I wasn't pushing social events, we would probably never see anyone. We'd turn into one of those weird families who never goes anywhere, and that orders everything online, even our groceries. Although ordering groceries online does have a certain appeal to it. No pushing a cart down overcrowded aisles, no fending of children begging for Poptarts...wait, now I have a mental picture of little urchin kids on Aisle 5, saying, "Please, miss, may I 'ave a Pop Taht?" instead of MY children asking me to buy Pop Tarts. Plus I've COMPLETELY gotten off track.

So, last night we invited some friends over for dinner, and I made a big deal to Shelley about how I was going to make BAKED POTATO SOUP and how it was SOOOO good. It had bacon and sour cream and cheese in it and it was basically heaven in a bowl, and we were all going to gain 10 pounds just by being in the same room with The Soup. I was really excited about The Soup. The fun, fellowship, and conversation that we were going to have was going to be great too, but my taste buds were all set for The Soup.

Yesterday morning, I head to the store and procure all of the fantastic ingredients for The Soup, including twice the amount of bacon that the recipe called for because, really, when the recipe says 10-12 strips of bacon, and you're doubling the recipe, you might as well just put in two whole packages. That's probably in the ballpark of 20-24 strips, right? I began the preparations in plenty of time for our guests arrival. I cook the potatoes, I make the butter/flour paste stuff (fancy word, huh?) that you use as a base for cream soups and add the milk and then the potatoes and stir and stir and stir, all the while adjusting the flame under The Soup. Eventually, I add in the sour cream and bacon and cheese, and it's all starting to look soooo delicious.

Reilly came in and said, "Mom, I can smell the soup outside!"
I said, "Yeah? Does it smell good?"
She replies, "Yes...well, it smells kind of weird."
"Strange kid!" I think to myself, and continue on with my stirring. I take a little taste of the soup, but I've been sucking on zinc drops all day to ward off a cold, and I think that the aftertaste is ruining the taste of The Soup. So I take a spoonful out and present it to Troy.
"Here, honey! Taste it! Tell me what you think!" I say, beaming proudly, waiting for the oooh's and aaah's, waiting for him to faint to the floor from sheer delight.
"How do I think it tastes?" he asks. "It tastes burned!"

I think I died a little. You see, I have a ginormous stock pot that I use when I'm making large amounts of soup, and it has one flaw: it is very thin. I try very hard to keep the temperature low when I'm cooking in this pot, but I obviously don't have the hang of it. Sure enough, when we went into the kitchen and really started digging into the bottom of the pot, large chunks of burned soup begin to emerge. I'm just glad that we discovered the disaster before I presented Burned Potato Soup to *Shelley and her entire family!

So we had fun and fellowship and great conversation. And pizza.

*For the record, Brian tasted the soup and he couldn't taste the burn. But he has a cold, too. Shelley tasted it and said that she felt like she'd been smoking a cigarette! What troopers!!


Sherri said...

Well, you improvised and had a good time!
I have a thin pot like that...will burn soupy stuff every time!!! Jeff finally got me a taller, thicker one!

Heather the Mama Duk said...

Oh, no. At least you still had fun and the pizza was good. Now, get yourself a better pot!