This Thanksgiving, John's mom came to visit us for a week. Although we spent Thanksgiving dinner at the Binghamton Club ($20.95 plus service charge- we couldn't cook at home for nearly that cheap!!), we did do a bit of cooking at home over the weekend.
Before I left L.A. and my parents' nest, I made sure that my mom gave me a lesson in how to make those tasty gravies she is always pulling out of . . . uh, nowhere. Scrape the drippings, add the Wondra flour and Kitchen Bouquet, some wine and some orange juice, a bit of boullion maybe . . . voila! I've made probably 20 gravies since living here and they have - without exception- rocked the palate.
In my best effort to impress my mother-in-law with my new-found kitchen skillz, I was all excited when we decided to roast a chicken on Saturday night. Pyrex baking dish full-o-bird, the leeks, onions and anise stuffed all around, I took the thing out of the oven, removed the bird and veggies and popped the dish onto 2 hot burners on the stove top. Now I was cookin' with gas! or, electricity, as it were . . .
However, there's something my mom didn't tell me, apparently because it is so obvious that she didn't think she needed to: that is, one does not put a glass baking dish on top of a hot stove to cook the gravy, or one will have gravy-magma all over one's kitchen!
Yup, my huge lot of tasty gravy- orange juice, wine, boullion all melded so nicely and almost finished- exploded and sent pints and pints of molten gravy all over my stove top. Oh, and this would be a good time to mention that our house here has - ready for it? CARPET in the kitchen. Who puts carpet in the kitchen? It's literally impossible to clean it. We call it the "chicken carpet" because you can slop all sorts of infectious kitchen detritus - like salmonella-filled chicken juice- all over it and it just magically disappears, absorbed and seemingly gobbled up by the creepy carpet. YUK.
I didn't take a picture because I was too freaked out- I'd just walked away when it exploded and barely escaped having boiling grease all over my body. It pretty much looked like this, but with gnarly looking gravy pouring all over the avocado green stove and running down the front of the stove, sprinkled with vicious bits of glass. I guess I'm not alone, at least. I found a really good article about the phenomenon of exploding pyrex, which appears to be happening more frequently. Anyway, I think I've used up my one "Back when we were newlyweds living in New York, I was cooking for your grandmother and did the dumbest thing . . . "