Showing posts with label cooking. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cooking. Show all posts

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Limoncello by Me!


Yup! I made limoncello.  Not just say I'm going to make it like I have the past 13 years.

It tastes pretty good, too. The Husband said, "Whoa!" on the first day of tasting. Potent. Today, the fourth day, he said, "It has mellowed." Yup. Still potent, but now the lemony taste is coming through.

I chose Giada de Laurentiis' limoncello recipe because it didn't require months of waiting for the solution to do it's thing in a closet before we can drink it. Yup. Instant gratification.

Of course I modified the recipe as I went along. I pared lemon peels from 15 lemons and added lemon juice to the sugar syrup. I waited six days to decant the liqueur because I didn't have any bottles and jars. The recipe says that it's good in the refrigerator for a month, but I think it can last longer. After all I used the Costco brand of vodka, which is 60 proof. Yeah, dragon fire. But, remember, it's a mellow fire. Giggle.

I'm linking up with All Seasons, a weekly meme hosted by Jesh at JeshStG Artwork. Click here to check out the other participants. Thank you, Jesh.





Saturday, July 1, 2017

Taking a Break for Writing


Note: I wrote this post yesterday from the iPad, then sent it to my computer by email. Perhaps one day I'll learn to cope and paste on iPad. Anyway, by evening, I was too pooped to get on the computer and publish this post. In the end, does it really matter if I had? :-)

I'm taking a short writer's break from being a domestic goddess. Brief no doubt because I have been thinking about writing that first sentence for the last 10 minutes. Every so often that sentence repeated itself in my brain when I wasn't distracted by The Solid Gold Oldies music station on TV playing in the background and by the ambitious things I want to complete before dinner begging for mental attention.

Sigh.

I forgot. What was the intent of this post?

Probably to brag about the things I have finally got to and then some. Should that be one word: then some, thensome?

To my great surprise the Blenheim apricot tree gifted us—and the birdies—with many branches full of fruit. We can't eat the apricots faster than they ripen on the tree. For every apricot we pick, one smashes on the ground. Not a bad ratio, considering we thought the tree wasn't interested in producing anymore.

This afternoon I finally turned off the computer and took care of the apricots. I froze a bunch of fruit, baked an apricot pie, made apricot pouches with the leftover filling and pie crust, and created a spicy sesame apricot salsa. Olé!

Cleanup took longer. That's what I'm resting from, which is about to be over.

Next on my agenda is to pare lemon rind and soak them in vodka for my first ever attempt at making limoncello. I've been wanting to try that for the past 13 years. 

Until later.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Setting Around-the-House Goals


Some mornings I wake up with a mission in my mind. Today, for example, the goal for the Husband and me is to bring down another bookcase to the living room from upstairs.

Very easy, you say.

Certainly.

As long as I keep us on task, which means not getting distracted by something else. I have a not-so-committed goal to make something out of cabbage and ground turkey. Maybe make a non-stuffed cabbage casserole. Stuffing cabbage sounds too time-consuming. I know: What else do I have to do? Well, bring down the bookcase and all the books in that bookcase. I'd also like to go outside and prune the apricot tree while it's still cold. And, maybe one or two of the scraggly rose bushes.

It's nearly 11:35 a.m. See what I mean about getting distracted. No? Well, I just wrote this post.


Sunday, January 1, 2017

Cheers to a New Calendar Year!


"What got into you?" asked the Husband, looking across the table as I cracked walnuts.

"The bananas got browner just like you said would happen," I answered. We bought the bunch of organic bananas yesterday afternoon. I only wanted three bananas, but when I saw that the bananas were a bunch for a dollar, I couldn't bring myself to buy three bananas when I could purchase eight for the same price. Would you?

I don't remember if I fully answered the Husband's question. I recall that he went back to checking out Facebook so I must've said that I want the walnuts for making banana bread. Now I think I'll bake scones. Easier. Then I'll freeze the rest of the bananas. I found out I don't even need to peel, slice, or stick them in freezer bags. And when I want to use one or two for baking or smoothies, I simply microwave the bananas for a minute or two. Voila!

It's been a good new year so far. I've been very productive, too. Along with cracked walnuts, I've made a pot of New Years' beans and rice, wrote a couple of short pieces (I'm including this post), brought some books downstairs,  and envisioned a bit more about how the living room shall look. The Husband and I went down to the storage lockers and brought back a few boxes and things and looked in the attic to see what the Mama hid there. 

I know. What's gotten into me? The possibilities of the new year I suppose. Let's see what happens tomorrow.

May you all have peace, joy, and wonder in 2017!


To start the new year, I'm linking up with All Seasons, a joyful meme hosted by Jesh. Click here to check out the meme. Maybe you'd like to join in as well.



Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Yummy Pumpkin Bibingka


"I'm going to make bibingka," I said on Christmas morning.

"Do you know how to make bibingka?" asked the Husband. 

The Husband forgot that I've baked this Filipino dessert a few times before. Of course it was easy for him to forget since the Mama liked to make this cake treat nearly every Christmas and for any day she deemed special.  I don't know if I'll carry on the Mama's annual holiday tradition. It simply felt good to have some kind of warm sweetness enveloping the house on Christmas morning.

The tradition I will carry on is the Mama's like to experiment with recipes. I read a recipe for pumpkin mochi which I thought would translate quite well into pumpkin bibingka. Both recipes use sweet rice flour rather than wheat flour. Instead of condensed milk, I used a combination of coconut milk and lactose-free whole milk. I'd give you the recipe but I modified it as I was going and you know how that goes.

The result turned out pretty yummy. Not too sweet since I cut the sugar by a third.  I was surprised that the pudding-texture of the cake came out almost like the Mama's, which means I may have approximated the secret ratio of liquid to dry ingredients that the Mama used. Nearly every Filipino woman has her own unique take on bibingka once she has mastered the basic recipe.

"It's like pumpkin pie without the crust," said the Husband.

I think the Mama would've liked it, too.


Y is the letter for this week's ABC Wednesday, a weekly meme that has been around for 10 years. Thank you, ABCW team!  Want to join or check out the participants? Then click here.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Time Flies. . .


When you have much to do. Yup. Time flies. Fly, fly, time.

Within the next six hours, I plan to do this:

Finish the Husband's tunic. All I need to do is attach the sleeves and sides, then hem it up.

Make an appetizer.  The Husband and I are going to a party tonight. Fun. Maybe I'll make cheesy olive balls. They're easy to make, but that means going to the store for olives and cheddar cheese.

Put together a photo collage.  It's for a luncheon fundraiser tomorrow. I could probably do that after the party, if I print the photos beforehand. Yeah, that's the ticket.

Get this post done.  I threw this in so I can feel like I'll have accomplished something once its published.  Always look for the positive, I say.

Thank goodness, I finished reading my novel last night, otherwise I'd forget about doing these things I plan to do. Enchanted  August by Brenda Bowen.  Just like the title, the story was enchanting.

I could go for either a cup of coffee or a lovely cocktail.  That's not going to happen. So, I'll just pretend to smell the flowers.  See ya.



Monday, July 27, 2015

Summer Domestic Diva Challenge -- One Down!


Ha! I completed  #4 on my list of seven things to do before the summer ends. 

A jar of lemon peels covered with vodka is now sitting in the cupboard with the glasses. In four to six weeks, it will become lemon extract. I hope, I hope. 

The first thing I plan to make with the stuff is lemon cookies. They were the first—and when I think of it, the only—cookies that the Mama baked when I was a small kid. They were perfectly round, golden, and yummily lemon flavored. I have yet to taste a lemon cookie that rivals my memory of the Mama's cookies. 

If you're curious, this was my recipe, which I adapted from Mommypotamus's.
  1. Zested 9 medium lemons. Don't get any of the white peel. 
  2. Place lemon strips in a jar and cover with about 1.5 cup of vodka. 
  3. Shake well, then put in a cupboard.
The rest of the instructions are from Mommypotamus:
  1. Shake the mixture every day for a week.  
  2. Shake every so often for 4 to 6 weeks, which I shall translate as once every 3 or 4 days. 
  3. Strain the lemon peels and pour lemon extract into clean jars. 
  4. Store in cabinet or refrigerator.

What will I do with those lemons I zested? (The zester is a very cool tool by the way.) Make lemonade!

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Seven Things to Do Before Summer Ends


It's time for me to make a list of all domestic diva things I want to accomplish this summer. Otherwise, I will just vaguely think about doing them, which in my world means "I'll do it tomorrow." As we all know, tomorrow really never comes.

I shall ring Tilda-Hilda's ding-a-ling bell and...and...and...proclaim my list of things I shall complete before the first day of Autumn.


1. Sew the Husband another tunic.

2. Sew myself a tunic.

3. Sew the Christmas vest for the Husband, which I said I would do....uhm, two Christmases ago.


4. Make lemon extract.

5. Make limoncello.

6. Make candied ginger.

7. Bake energy bars. So, Tilda-Hilda and I can pedal farther and further down roads.

I can do these seven things. I can!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

From the Archives -- Taboongow


Here's another post that I wrote for my first blog, Cu'Pie Bird Says Chirp. Chirp. FYI: I slightly edited the post for today. Tomorrow, I shall be back to regular posting. Maybe.

Gourds for the Eating
(originally published November 20, 2008)

Several years ago, in the upcountry of Maui, I heard birds coo, “Ta-boong-ow. Ta-boong-ow.” I wondered if they were hungry for the gourd, and whether they wanted the long, bat-shaped ones or the ones that look like hourglass women.

Taboongow is the Ilokano word for upo, which is the Tagalog name for the gourd. (Please note that I’m phonetically spelling ta-boong-ow according to what my American ears hear.) Many people think of this vine-growing vegetable as an ornamental plant to dry and use for display or to make into crafts or musical instruments. Taboongow is also yummy to eat when they are still fresh. If you eat the gourd young, you can eat the center white part as well. Otherwise, you cut it away so you cook only the light-green part.


There are many types of gourds. Taboongow is known as the bottle gourd. They are light green and smooth-skinned. They may grow straight, roundish, or curvy. They are not to be confused with the bitter gourds (bittermelon) or the ridged gourds, which are made into loofahs when the fruits are dry.
 

The Daddy grew taboongow every year and when he passed away years ago, the Mama continued the annual sowing. In recent years, she lets the vines climb up the fruit trees in the back yard. This year, the Mama had a decent crop. We have been eating taboongow almost once a week since summer. Usually, when the Mama cuts up a fruit, we cook part of it into a soup and she freezes the rest uncooked for the winter. This year, the Mama and I decided we’d just cook each fruit she harvests and freeze cooked portions.

Taboongow doesn’t have a strong taste. In other words, it works with almost any spices and herbs you want to add to it. I’ve experimented a lot this year. So far it has tasted good with a curry, coconut, basil and thyme, or cilantro base. I’ve cooked it with shrimp, bacon, chicken, tofu, fish, or pork. All good. I’m sure it would taste good with beef. Hmmm.

Taboongow soup is one of my favorite dishes. The basis of my soup goes like this: Sauté onions and garlic. Add chicken or pork, if you’re using it. Once meat is brown, add tomatoes. Once tomatoes are broken up, add any herbs and/or other veggies (bell pepper, celery, etc.). Add up to 1 cup of water. Put lid on and simmer until meat is almost done. Now, stir in taboongow so it is coated with the liquid. Cook until the taboongow is translucent.


Things to note: The fruit is 90 percent water, so your soup will get a bit more flavorably soupier. (Are there such words? asked the Husband) Also it has been years since I’ve added salt to my cooking. So, add in salt where you normally would when making a soup.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Z is for a Zip! Zing! Zee! Party


Congratulations to all of us bloggers of the Blogging from A-to-Z April Challenge! We did it. Zzzzzzzooo-hoooooo!

So, for you, today, I'm cooking up a virtual feast as my final entry for my food theme. Enjoy!

Appetizers
• Lumpia (Filipino eggrolls. Of course! I can't throw a party without lumpia)
• Potstickers
• Inari Sushi (Deep-fried bean curd skins stuffed with rice, peas, and salmon
• Assorted fresh vegetables with onion dip


Main and Side Dishes
Kalua pork
• Grilled salmon
Pancit  (Filipino noodle dish)
• Stir-fry vegetable medley (onions, garlic, mushrooms, green beans, broccoli, zucchini, carrots, tiny corn, and water chestnuts)
• Kim chee
• Bamboo relish (The Mama's awesome, delicious, pickled spicy bamboo. Double yum!)
• Brown rice


Desserts
• Apple Pie, Ollalieberry Pie, and Cherry Pie
• Suman (Coconut glutinous rice wrapped in banana leaves)
• Fresh watermelon and pineapple

Drinks
• Local handcrafted beer
• Local wines
• Apple juice (locally produced, of course)
• Water

Click here to find other A to Z challenge participants.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

X is for Xmas Cookies


I bake cookies at least once a year. And, that's at Xmas. What's Xmas without the yummy smell of cookies baking in the oven, right?

Those first few years of baking Xmas cookies, I'd go through cookbooks, looking for interesting cookie recipes to try. But, always, I'd end up following certain recipes in a Women's Day cookie recipe booklet. That may be how I got hooked reading cookbooks.

I used to bake a bunch of different cookies. Not anymore. Now, I bake three kinds of cookies. Persimmon biscotti, the Mama's favorite; Russian tea cakes, the Husband's favorite: and a persimmon, chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin, or gingersnap cookie.

Do you bake Xmas cookies? What cookies do you like to bake?


Click here to find other A to Z challenge participants.

Monday, April 27, 2015

W is for What's Wrong with Your Cake?

Once-upon-a-time, a long time ago, when I was still a young thing. . . .
 
After the Birthday Gal happily blew our her candles on the carrot cake that I baked, the other student assistant and I cut the cake and served the slices to the Birthday Gal and everyone else in the Department of Secondary Education office. The cake looked yummy. Everyone took a bite. Several people looked puzzled as they chewed.

The gruff teddy bear of a department chair said, "Sue, did you forget to turn on the oven?"

"Huh?"

The Teddy Bear Chair examined his cake. "It's flat."

"That's the way it's supposed to be." I said.

"I love it," said the Birthday Gal. "It's just like the cake from home. All full of nuts and carrots. Thank you, Sue."

The Birthday Gal was from Central America. She gave me a hug and took another slice.

The Teddy Bear Chair continued eating his cake. "Have you made this cake before?" he asked.

"First time," I said.

"So, we're your guinea pigs," he said.

"All my cakes are first times," I said. "They're never the same. I don't measure things."

"Ah ha! That's why. Measure next time, Sue." He said, then turned, walking into his cavern of an office with his nearly eaten piece of cake.

Much later, as I sat at my desk, typing paperwork, my supervisor Dr. Who-Writes-Romances-During-Her-Breaks came out from her office behind me. "Sue," she said, her voice full of excitement. "I know what's wrong with your cake."

"Yes," I said, thinking there was nothing wrong with my cake.

"You forgot the flour!" she said. She went back into office with a satisfied look on her face as if she had solved a mystery. I didn't have the heart to tell her that I did use flour.


Click here to find other A to Z challenge participants.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

S is for the Mama's Spoon

This is the Mama's spoon, the one with which she cooked for as long as I can remember. And, for those who are new to the blog, I'm in my early 60s and the Mama is 30-some years older than me.

I like cooking with the Mama's spoon. It's smooth, fits in my hand, and has the perfect heft to it. I also like the way the metal spoon sounds against a pot or pan. Most of all, I like cooking with it because it's the Mama's spoon.

When I pick up the Mama's spoon, I think of her using it to stir her bittermelon chicken soup, eggplant-bittermelon stew, tabongow chicken soup, pork adobo, ginger beef, fried rice, scrambled eggs, pancit, and diningding (a soup of all the Filipino vegetables in her garden).

In my mind, I see her making Thanksgiving dinner with that spoon. She sauteed the ingredients for the dressing. She basted the turkey. She mashed the potatoes with the back of the spoon. And, she stirred and stirred the gravy.

She cooked a lot of meals with that one spoon.  Nearly all of which were delicious.


Click here to find other A to Z challenge participants.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

N is for Nighttime Snack


"Let's have a snack," said the Daddy. He sat in his Lazy-boy recliner, while my teenage self stretched out on the couch beside him. It was a summer night, with the doors and windows still wide open for the breeze. A rerun show played on the TV, at which I looked up now and then from the book I read.

Without doubt, that scene took place around nine o'clock, the usual time the Daddy called for a snack when he was in the mood. The Daddy's favorite nighttime snack were the doughnuts without the hole that I made from canned biscuits. They were quick and easy to make, about 10 minutes, if I recall correctly.

As the oil heated in the iron skillet, I opened the cardboard can of biscuits, the best part of making the doughnuts. Pow! A satisfying blow against the edge of the corner. Pop! The eight (or was it 10) small, soft, slices of dough smiled between the cardboard.

Carefully, I dropped the round slices into the heated oil in the skillet. Sizzle. Sizzle. Sizzle. I quickly stirred cinnamon and sugar on a plate.  When the doughnuts were a golden brown, I transferred them to the plate and tossed them in the sweet topping. Voila! Cinnamon doughnuts.

The Daddy already sat at the table, ready to dig into his nighttime snack.


Click here to find other A to Z challenge participants.


Wednesday, April 15, 2015

M is for Magical Meringue


Clang, clang, clang with my right hand.

Clang, clang, clang with my left hand.

Repeat and repeat. Then repeat again. And, again.
 
It always amazes me how I can get soft peaks of meringue just by beating egg whites. I'm sure there's a simple, straightforward explanation for the transformation, and maybe one day I will really want to know. Until then, I'm perfectly happy, making clang, clang noises with the egg beater against the stainless steel pan as the clear egg whites change to foam, to thicker, clingy foam, and finally to meringue. It's magic. Olé!


Click here to find other A to Z challenge participants.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

H is for the Holy Trinity of Ingredients


If I could only have three ingredients in my pantry, they would be onions, garlic, and tomatoes. The onions could be yellow, red, or white, in that order of preference. The garlic could be bulbs or shoots. The tomatoes could be fresh, frozen, or canned.  Onions, garlic, and tomatoes are my holy trinity when it comes to making sautes, stir fries, soups, and stews. Casseroles, pastas, and rice dishes, too.

If I had to do without one of the holy trinity, I could go without the tomatoes.

Onions, garlic, and tomatoes. It's the way I learned to cook, which was by watching the Mama.

Smash the garlic with a smooth granite rock brought back from the beach, or with the side of the knife with a satisfying whack as demonstrated by Martin Yan on Yan Can Cook.  Cut the onion in half, then cut thin slices out of each half. Repeat with the tomatoes, except the slices don't have to be so skinny.

The above photo is pancit, a Filipino noodle dish made out of mung bean noodles. If you're interested in the recipe, click here. I used various vegetables in the recipe, but, without having done so, I think pancit can taste good with just onions, garlic, tomatoes, shrimp or sausage, and mung bean noodles.

I do know that scrambled eggs made with onion, garlic, and tomatoes is very yummy!  I plan on making that tonight, with bacon on the side, for our dinner.


Click here to find other A to Z challenge participants.


Wednesday, April 8, 2015

G is for Garlic


Garlic.  Yummmmmmmm. Can you tell that I like garlic?

I eat so much garlic I can no longer taste the garlic. So, it's possible I have what people call awful garlic breath. I don't know.  But, I must not eat that much garlic since mosquitoes still love to bite me.

About 15 miles from where we live is a garlic factory. Lots of people dislike the smell that comes out of the factory. Not me. I love driving by it and getting in that sweet spot on the road where you drive right through the aroma. Yummmmmmmmmmm. Too bad a tomato cannery doesn't stand right next to the factory.

I was about 30 years old when I realized that not everyone cooks with a lot of garlic. At a dinner in which we, guests, helped prepare the meal, the hostess asked me to make the garlic bread. She set out a loaf of French bread, a cube of butter, and a bulb of garlic. So, I smashed, cleaned and minced the garlic, then cut the bread in two, slathered butter over the two halves, and sprinkled the garlic over them. Each half was completed studded with minced garlic.  I wrapped the bread in aluminum and put it in the hostess' oven.

After dinner, the hostess said, "I've never had garlic bread like that before. It was delicious."

That night I learned that people don't normally use a whole bulb of garlic for garlic bread. Ah ha!

The next time we had a dinner party at the hostess' house, she asked me to make the garlic bread again. With no changes to my recipe.

Click here to find other A to Z challenge participants.



Monday, April 6, 2015

E is for Experimenting

I used to think that the Mama was a rigid, but, awesome, cook. Everything she cooked was perfect. Her cutting of meats and vegetables always came out precisely small and neat. Her dishes always tasted consistently the same—yummily delicious.

When it came to Filipino cuisine, nobody, including Filipino restaurant chefs, came close to her food. The Daddy came very close. The one dish of his that surpassed hers by a tiny bit was his fried chicken. His was a subtle melt-in-your-mouth delicious, while the Mama's was more a pow! wow! in-your-face delicious.

My perception of the Mama-the-cook changed when I was in my late 30s. Suddenly the food she put on the table when I came to visit was different. Her pork adobo no longer was the consistently same delicious taste. It was still delicious, but the taste slightly differed each time she cooked it. At first, I thought she was being forgetful when she cooked. And, perhaps, there was a bit of that.

During one visit, the Mama served fried chicken with thick deep-fried lemon slices and deep-fried chayotes. I had no idea lemons and chayotes could be deep fried and taste so good that way. When I told her that I liked them, she said, "It's good to experiment. You don't know if something tastes good until you make it."

I was totally floored, to say the least. Something else I had inherited from the Mama.


Click here to find other A to Z challenge participants.


Wednesday, April 1, 2015

A is for Adobo, Pork Adobo

http://www.a-to-z-challenge.com
Click here to find other A to Z challenge participants.







The clatter of metal against metal and heady aroma of frying pork, garlic, and onions lured me to the dark, cool kitchen that hot summer morning. At the stove was the Daddy's young cousin who was staying with us while on leave from the Navy. One hand shook a large grey soup pot on a burner, and the other hand stirred the ingredients rapidly with a large silver spoon that made a rhythmic clang against the inside of the pot. His body swayed and seemingly danced. The sizzle of the meat and vegetables was his music.

I was maybe four or five years old. I don't recall the Mama being home, otherwise why would the handsome, dark-haired man with a sweet smile be at the Mama's stove. But, maybe that day the Daddy's cousin said to the Mama, "Let me cook." So that she could care for Baby Sister who Died too Early. Now that I think of it, that was more likely what happened.

The Daddy's cousin smiled at me as I came up beside him.  "What's that?" I asked, most likely taking a deep breath of the developing delicious perfume. I had never smelled anything like it before.

"Adobo," he said. "Pork adobo. Do you like it?"

"I don't know."

"Just you wait then." 

As I remember the Daddy's cousin, my imagination sees him as a magician dancing a ballet. In my mind's eye, I see him pouring apple cider vinegar into the pot, next sprinking salt and pepper, and then tossing in a bay leaf or two.  .  . .Clang, Shake, Sizzle.Clang. Clang. Sizzle. Shake. . . Finally, he throws in a healthy amount of spice that brings the dish together -- paprika. He continues wildly. . .Clang. Clang. Shake. Clang. Clang. The sizzle has turned into pure jazz.

With one last clang and shake, the dish is done. Then with great flair, he spoons the tender, glistening red pork on a large plate.

I don't recall eating lunch, but most likely the Mama, the Baby Sister who Died too Early, the Older and Only Bionic Brother,  the Daddy's Young Cousin, and I sat in the cool, dark kitchen eating the pork adobo with rice. No doubt that was the day pork adobo, cooked Ilocano style, became one of my favorite dishes.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

A Ditzy Moment


A couple of weeks ago, the Appliance Guy checked out the burners on our electric stove. We were down to only one working burner. I actually watched the third burner spit up flames as it died. Both the Mama and I were worried that we'd have to get a new stove. All for naught. The Appliance Guy told us that all we needed were burners and immediately called in an order for us.

Since the Appliance Guy was there, I asked him if it was possible to calibrate the oven. "It's not working?" he asked, opening the oven door.

"Sometimes my dishes come out dry or undercooked, even though I follow the time and temperature on the recipes," I said, watching him take out the oven racks, turn them around, and insert them back.

"Were they in backwards?" I asked.

The Appliance Guy stood up. "The door wasn't closing properly because of the racks."

"Oh."

"The stove is also old," the Appliance Guy said, which he most likely added to cover for my ditziness.

"Over 25 years," said the Husband. Chiming in, I like to think, to also make me feel less scatterbrained.

"So, all this time I had the racks in upside down and backwards. I can never remember which way they go in," I said, thinking about the time I  couldn't figure why my boots hurt until a friend said, "Sue, you've got your boots on wrong."

The Appliance Guy said, "Just remember that the hooked ends go in first with the hooks down."

I nodded. "I thought they had to be in the front to catch the pans in case they slip out."

"I never thought of that," he said, smiling.

After the Appliance Guy left, the Husband  started washing the breakfast dishes. He was bent over the sink laughing like crazy.

"What's so funny?" I asked.

"You thought the racks would keep the pans from slipping," the Husband said. "If they slipped out it's because the floor is uneven."

What could I do but laugh with the Husband. Loudly and long.

I hope the Appliance Guy had a good laugh, too.