Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Stocking Your Kitchen

When my husband and I married, he took me grocery shopping. Bags and bags later, I said “we have to come back for spices.” He thought to himself “salt. pepper. How complicated can that be?” only to see another whole bag appear. He discovered a love of cooking, and cooks much fancier, more complicated dishes than I do. I still laugh at the day when he thought spices were just salt and pepper.

Here is the list I made for the newlyweds and independants in our family. What would you add? What are your staples in the kitchen?

Staples for Your Pantry
small cans of tomato paste
whole tomatos, 16 oz cans
tomato sauce, 16 oz. cans
artichoke hearts, 16 oz. can
evaporated milk
powdered milk
Dream Whip
olive oil
cider vinegar
red wine vinegar
balsamic vinegar
canned tuna
1 can crab (opt)
1 can smoked salmon (opt)
1 can shrimp (opt)
1 can chunk pineapple
1 can some kind of fancy fruit juice concentrate – raspberry, pomegranate, etc. (mix with soda water for a “drink” when unexpected guests drop in)
1 package nice crackers
1 pkg chocolate chips
Soups – cans, packages
bouillon cubes (chicken, beef, veg)
Saltines (for queasy stomach and when there is no bread good with PB or tuna)

Baking Staples
flour (NOT self-rising)
fine white sugar
brown sugar
baking powder
baking soda
vanilla flavoring
almond flavoring
lemon flavoring
red food coloring
green food coloring

Spices
salt
pepper
cinnamon
thyme
sage
basil
marjoram
oregano
cumin
chili
cilantro
parsley
turmeric (makes things yellow)

Spices II Only if you are into cooking:
saffron
coriander
cardomon
ginger
cloves

Pasta
spaghetti noodles
lasagne noodles
stars/alphabets (small noodles)
penne noodles (for stronger sauces)

Freezer
cheddar cheese
mozarella cheese
hamburger
chicken breasts
leftover ham
leftover turkey
1 stick real butter
frozen spinace
frozen peas
individual biscuits

Refrigerator Basics
Milk
Eggs
Ketchup
sweet pickle relish
Mayonnaise
Butter spread
Pillsbury Crescent Rolls (trust me)
cheddar cheese
Horseradish
Mustard (basic everyday yellow)
Really good French Mustard (opt)
jalepeno’s (if you use them)
Soda water (removes stains)
capers (opt)
sour cream (opt)
cream cheese (opt)
jam and jelly (your favorites)
chocolate syrup
tomato pesto (jazzes things up)
Thai chili sauce
soy sauce

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November 26, 2006 Posted by | Cooking, Cross Cultural, Family Issues, Shopping | 6 Comments

When Women Tell Lies

It’s an old joke, but it gave me a grin first thing in the morning – and that is a GOOD joke. Please, don’t be offended. God/The Lord appears in jokes in our culture frequently; it is not considered disrespectful.

One day, when a seamstress was sewing while sitting close to a river, her
thimble fell into the river. When she cried out, the Lord appeared and
asked, “My dear child, why are you crying?”

The seamstress replied that her thimble had fallen into the water and that
she needed it to help her husband in making a living for their family.

The Lord dipped His hand into the water and pulled up a golden thimble set
with pearls.

“Is this your thimble?” the Lord asked The seamstress replied, “No.”

The Lord again dipped into the river. He held out a silver thimble ringed
with sapphires.

“Is this your thimble?” the Lord asked. Again, the seamstress replied,
“No.”

The Lord reached down again and came up with a leather thimble. “Is this
your thimble?” the Lord asked.

The seamstress replied, “Yes.”

The Lord was pleased with the woman’s honesty and gave her all three
thimbles to keep, and the seamstress went home happy.

Some years later, the seamstress was walking with her husband along the
riverbank, and her husband fell into the river and disappeared under the
water. When she cried out, the Lord again appeared and asked her, “Why are
you crying?”

“Oh Lord, my husband has fallen into the river!”

The Lord went down into the water and came up with George Clooney.
“Is this your husband?” the Lord asked. “Yes,” cried the seamstress .

The Lord was furious. “You lied! That is an untruth!”

The seamstress replied, “Oh, forgive me, my Lord It is a misunderstanding.
You see, if I had said ‘no’ to George Clooney, you would have come up with
Brad Pitt. Then if I said ‘no’ to him, you would have come up with my
husband. Had I then said ‘yes,’ you would have given me all three. Lord,
I’m not in the best of health and would not be able to take care of all
three husbands, so THAT’S why I said ‘yes’ to George Clooney. And so the
Lord let her keep him.

The moral of this story is: Whenever a woman lies, it’s for a good and
honorable reason, and in the best interest of others.

That’s our story, and we’re sticking to it.

Signed,
All Us Women

November 26, 2006 Posted by | Joke | 2 Comments