last christmas – or was it the christmas before? – we gave my cousin joel this book.
i didn’t take the time to page through it that day (and still haven’t had the opportunity to explore it further) but what i do remember is joel sitting on the couch and laughing like crazy as he perused the content. he shared a few of his findings out loud, and we were all thoroughly amused.
my dear dad takes quite the teasing around here. the erv-man good-naturedly puts up with our gently mocking, teasing, and mimicking.
dad’s had some classic lines, over the years…
~ “everything in moderation” – > whether he’s referencing running mileage, ipod volume, dessert servings, or stock market investing, the middle-of-the-road approach is dad’s tried ‘n’ true philosophy. and, really, i have yet to come across a circumstance where it doesn’t make good sense to apply this maxim.
~ “the clutch is your friend” – > i got my learner’s drivers’ license the very day i turned sixteen. after completing a young driver’s of canada course for basic driving skills, dad taught me how to drive standard. i give the man credit as he allowed me full access to our family’s toyota celica.
we started off going over to the (empty) parking lot at fairview park mall where i’d lurch around
my race course the “roads” of the lot. dad very patiently guided me through the clutch vs gas pedal balancing act, and soundlessly endured my herky-jerky start-and-stop attempts. as i tended to act like the clutch pedal was on fire, dad would intone, “the clutch is your friend,” and this reminder helped me to e-a-s-e off of the clutch.
[sidenote: best story ever: after i graduated from parking lot driving, we went on to quiet, suburban streets. one time, we were at the corner of heritage and lorraine, at a stop sign, and for the life of me, i could not get the celica to GO! i kept stalling the car. i grew more and more frustrated/anxious as a few cars lined up behind us. finally, dad and i hopped out of the car, switched spots, and dad drove us out of the intersection. talk about being embarrassed!]. dad’s driving lessons paid off as i grew to love driving standard – it’s a handy skill!
~ “i don’t feel good if i don’t burp” – > belching and farting were not big issues in our family, growing up. for sure, we didn’t let fly air bursts in public, but if it was just the four of us at home, you let out what whatever air you needed to. mom, the brother and i were loud, quick and forceful burpers. dad tended to just blip out little burps. when we’d grow tired of hearing these and complain, dad would thump his chest or rub his stomach and plead his case: “i don’t feel good if i don’t burp.” [update: i checked with mom, and dad still says this phrase, to this day].
~ “the world is full of idiots” – > this is my favourite dad saying of all time. in fact, i have it on my facebook info page under “favourite quotations.” it used to be the tagline at the bottom of my emails. i have to give it to him, dad is just totally correct with this assessment.
patience is not one of dad’s many virtues – hey, the apple falls not far from the tree, i fully admit – so you are likely to find idiots on the roads, at the bank, at the grocery store, on tv…basically, no zone is exempt.
~ “this is not a casserole” – > growing up, one of our favourite meals was a ground beef dish that my mom would prepare quite frequently because we loved it so much. as far back as i can remember, whenever the topic of casseroles came up, dad always claimed that he won’t eat casseroles, doesn’t like casseroles, don’t give him a casserole. mom would protest with, “but this is a casserole and you love it!” so, that’s how this recipe became known as “the casserole that’s not a casserole.” enjoy!
the casserole that is not a casserole (aka ground beef in sour cream)
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 1 lb ground beef (mom always uses lean)
- 3 cups (dry) medium egg noodles
- 3 cups tomato juice
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 1 /2 tsp celery salt
- dash pepper
- 2 tsp worchestershire sauce
- 1/2 cup chopped green pepper [mom’s note: or just a 1/4 cup if you don’t like green pepper that much. but, don’t omit completely. this recipe seems to need that touch]
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 tin sliced mushrooms, drained
[mom uses an electric fry pan for this recipe].
cook onion in the oil until tender, but not brown. add beef, brown lightly.
place noodles in a layer over meat. combine tomato juice and seasonings, and pour over noodles.
bring to boiling, then cover and simmer over low heat for 20 minutes.
add green pepper; cover, and continue cooking for 10 minutes or until the noodles are tender.
stir in sour cream and drained mushrooms. heat through, but do not return to a boil.
~makes about 6 servings – depends if there are teenage boy eaters involved. 🙂
any gems to share from your own dad? dad has always been a very good sport. in our after-supper hyper hour, this was not an unusual sight:
we laughed til we cried, without fail!
31 FLAVOURS OF AUGUST
rating: *** 1/2 (three point five stars)
tasting notes: one star each for: the coconut-ty base layer; the black and white brownie doughs; the chocolate chips. bonus 1/2 star for putting it all together. this should have been on my initial list of must-have all-stars!