Saturday, January 10, 2009

It's Not Easy Being Me

I love this cookbook. With new resolve yesterday I sat down to plan meals using it. It has quite a few recipes that take different types of cherry booze (an affectionate term for alcoholic beverages from my husband's childhood). One recipe is Tequila-Lime Chicken. Problem is ... I don't know how to buy tequila. Where do you go? Do they sell it at Costco? Will it be $3 or $50? And what about the Margarita mix it calls for? Where is it cheapest? So ... I call a friend who is a seasoned alcohol buyer (you know who you are!) She tells me how to do it.

So I run my errands. Last stop is the liquor store to buy the tequila. I was in a hurry and there were no other customers in the store. So I go straight to the nice lady behind the counter.

"Where is the tequila? I just need a cheap kind for cooking." She directs me to the shelves that have the large "Tequila" sign at the top. (Duh ... ) I quickly figure out that the cheap bottles are at the bottom. So I grab the cheapest one and go back to the lady.

"So, this is tequila ... even though it doesn't say 'tequila' on it?" She looks at it.

"No, this is triple sec, which is why it says 'triple sec' on it." I wonder why it's in the tequila section. She reads my mind and says you can add triple sec to a margarita too.

"Oh, so tequila is for making margaritas?" She looks at me like I just arrived from Mars. Back I go to pick a bottle that says 'tequila' on it.

I also needed margarita mix for my recipe. I find that quickly. But, ut-oh. There are two kinds. Red and green. Red says 'strawberry' on it. That doesn't seem to fit with my recipe so I grab the green kind. But I don't understand why it isn't labeled 'lime' or 'green apple'. So, I ask my new friend. "Um ... so you can make strawberry margaritas or green ones?" Again, she glances at my eyes to see if I'm joking.

"Right. The green kind is lime, which is the regular kind of margarita. But you can use the red kind to make strawberry." And I think she said that you can add rum to that instead. I wondered how they make all those other flavors that are on the menu at Billy McHales. I didn't think it would be wise to ask her that. I thought about inviting her over to try my new recipe, but I didn't think it would be wise to ask her that either. We chat about her box cut wound instead.

Since yesterday I've learned that there is usually a worm in tequila bottles but mine is too cheap to get one. Today I made a batch of the chicken recipe and put all three meals worth in the freezer. I also made the Mango Cranberry Chicken. Enough for 4 dinners. Kaisha is going to help me make the Swimming Rama later today ... it's a Thai dish.

So, all in all, I'm feeling rather gourmet. Thanks to my cookbook.


Brenda said...

That is so funny! At least you knew where the liquor store was!

Cherry Booze made me smile. Let me know when you find a recipe that uses some. I have to say, the mere mention of Cherry Booze brings up a lot of crazy images! Ask Brett. He'll understand.

Kristine said...

Well, actually, I had to ask where the liquor store was. :o) But when she told me it did ring a bell.

Peter & Jessica said...

What bravery! Going to the liquor store and trying new recipes! Let me know if those meals are yummy or not. It's funny, I need to buy some vodka for a recipe I'm gonna try, but I haven't worked up the nerve yet. You inspire me! :o) (And that is very strange. I honestly would never have guessed that the inspiration would come from your direction! :o)

tara said...

I am so glad you are making these recipes work! I LOVE your experience at the liquor store, makes me want to go in and talk to the lady and see if she brings up the weirdo that came in asking so many silly questions! :) Well, now you are an experienced alcohol buyer...can't wait to hear how you like the recipes! We'll have to compare notes and share recipe ideas out of the book! It is such a good cookbook!!

Marie said...

I'm so bummed you didn't get a worm. Collin would have thought of something interesting to do with it. :o)

Peter & Jessica said...

Here's what Wikipedia has to say about worms in Tequila:

"It is a common misconception that some tequilas contain a 'worm' in the bottle. Only certain mezcals, usually from the state of Oaxaca, are ever sold con gusano, and that only began as a marketing gimmick in the 1940s. The worm is actually the larval form of the moth Hypopta agavis that lives on the agave plant. Finding one in the plant during processing indicates an infestation and, correspondingly, a lower quality product. (Note: for more information on how tequila is made, see mezcal.) However this misconception continues, and even with all the effort and marketing to represent tequila as a premium—similar to the way Cognac is viewed in relation to brandy—there are some opportunist producers for the shooters-and-fun market who blur these boundaries."

Whew! I was concerned for a little while there...:o)

Anonymous said...

Please, blog again. I check every night at 2:00 on my lunch break to see if you have posted anything new!