I didn’t cook a lot as a teenager. It was not for lack of trying on my mother’s part. I simply wasn’t that interested. And I came to pay for that lack of interest.
When I moved away at 18, I subsisted on the cafeteria’s vast cereal bar and whatever could be heated up in my hot pot. After three years of macaroni, ramen noodles and canned soup, I was nearly pickled with salt like any self-respecting college student. Brian graduated when we were 21 and moved into an apartment (with a laundry machine! And a stove! And an oven! And a fridge!) with one of his best friends. Suddenly, we had the option of cooking.
That year, due to overwork, he fell very sick with pleurisy. After his lab work ups, the doctor, unsurprisingly told him that he needed to reduce the salt in his diet. So Brian bought a cookbook for heart health which was for low-sodium diets and set about becoming healthy. He cooked almost every night. On Sundays, we’d spend the afternoon in the kitchen, making sauces and soups from scratch for the week.
However, we quickly discovered that while we may have cut down the salt, everything we cooked was UNBELIEVABLY GARLICKY.
Like, we’d finish our spaghetti and our mouths would be burning. I’d go for a work out (back when I, you know, worked out) and I could literally smell garlic coming from my pores.
Our breath stank so badly, it was the best deterrent for hanky-panky that any abstinence-only educator could have dreamed up.
We reeked of garlic.
We could NOT figure out what the problem was. We were following the recipes exactly! We were doing everything it said to do! What was the problem!?
One day, after weeks – literally weeks – of the Great Garlic Stink of 2000, we happened to catch a show of someone cooking. They were adding garlic to the dish and they picked up a clove of garlic (or what we thought was a clove….can you see where this is going?) and peeled off two or three of the little buds on it.
We were dumbfounded.
THAT is a clove?
We thought a clove of garlic was, you know, the WHOLE BULB of garlic.
|A bulb vs. a clove. You’re welcome.|
So everytime a recipe called for 4-6 cloves of garlic, we painstakingly added 4-6 BULBS of garlic. (That’s easily 80 cloves of garlic for one dish of spaghetti sauce.)
It is the mark of our truly mature relationship that we
A) Tell the story to everyone who comes over for supper and
B) Each blame the other one entirely for the entire debacle (but really, it’s all Brian’s fault) and
C) That we now roar with laughter over the fact that we actually ate those garlic concoctions for all of those weeks because we were so afraid of offending the other one by not eating their cooking. Ah, dating.
Anyone else have a cooking disaster story to tell to make me feel better?