My dad’s best friend really just knows how to have a mid-life crisis because he kinda went through a lot but now he drives a really cool car and has gone from being a man of good taste generally to specifically having a hip but age-appropriate style that is inarguably on point. But most importantly, he now lives on a houseboat. Dope!
Meanwhile: to celebrate the 4th of July last year, Katie and I and some other friends went camping in what turned out to be an RV campsite and we just sat by the sea drinking all day and sat by the fire drinking and eating salmon all night and it was really a marvelous way to celebrate America’s birthday; but we were back in Seattle for the actual 4th. Katie is dead inside, apparently, because she hates fireworks, but I am embarrassingly excited by stuff that’s exceedingly loud and flashy and demanding of attention and yes, that does extend to men and may help to explain a lot of things about my love life. But the point is, I convinced her to go to aforementioned dad’s friend’s houseboat to watch the fireworks, which in Seattle are launched from a huge barge in the middle of Lake Union and which even Katie, that year, found delightful.
This is all mostly unrelated to the fact that we were walking on this weird sidewalk/creepy path to the marina and Katie found a crock pot sitting there on the ground. It was missing a lid and was full of pine needles and a couple of cigarette butts and Katie was insistent that it was meant to be and that I had to take it home and use it forever. I was extremely skeptical of taking home an abandoned kitchen accessory that was manufactured no later than the 1970s and had since almost definitely been used to cook small amounts of meth, but then Katie told me that her friend Jana once had a boyfriend who had some hoarding tendencies, maybe (I forget this part of the story?), and brought home for her a lidless crock pot that HE found on the side of the road and she used it all the time and just covered it with a plate which worked great and she really loved it and she loved him even though things didn’t end up working out (sorry Jana!).
But so of course I ended up taking it home and now I use it all the time and it DOES work really great. I just use a big lid from a non-crock pot, problem solved. And the meth scrubbed right out, maybe. Or maybe that’s why my skin has been so bad this winter.
Anyway so now I use it constantly, and have made all kinds of chilis, soups, and so, so much stew. I made this Turkish lamb stew the other night that is probably the best thing I have ever tasted in my whole life, and keep in mind I’ve spent a lot of this lifetime binge eating.
Further benefits include:
- It’s healthy! You don’t need to use a bunch of oil and crap to make all your food delicious and moist and tender. You just need like, a sploosh or two of chicken broth or whatever, or some water, or some wine, maybe, depending on your palate.
- It’s lazy! You cut things up into pieces that are any size, really, whatever size you want and don’t really worry about being consistent if you don’t want to, sometimes variety is the spice of life! And then you put them all in the crock pot and then you dig up that lid that mostly fits on it and you turn it on and you leave for the day and then it’s done. Plus, one dish to wash!!
- It makes people think you are really amazing because of how it’s totally idiot-proof and good things cooking together for that long are bound to taste good at the end (right?). Also it makes your house smell crazy-good: one time I had a chili going and came home late in the evening to turn it off and caught my intoxicated roommate guiltily spooning out a bite because the smell had saturated the entire house and was just too enticing to wait a moment longer because I am, obviously, a culinary genius.
- You can make all those weird feasts your grandma makes out of a can of Campbell’s cream of mushroom soup and like, determination. Beef stroganoff! What even IS that? And all of the casseroles. Pinterest is drunk with crock pot recipes these days, so you know the whole scene is back on trend.
Crock pots are also an excellent excuse to say “crock,” and you want to make sure you really land on the “k” every time so people know you aren’t talking about those ridiculous gardening-shoes-turned-teenage-girl-obsession (did you know that the things that go in them are called Jibbitz? And as unacceptable as that is, look at this amaaaaazing one that is a shark!!! And here is a gator! What’s happening to meeeee).
P.S. OMG but please don’t burn down your house.