Two days ago, I pulled out a plastic container from the back of the bottom rack of the refrigerator. I didn’t know how long it’s been there, or what was in the container, but from the outside, I could see that the contents were black. I shook the container very gently – the contents swooshed like it may have been some kind of liquid at one time or another. Or maybe it had transformed into a fluid over time.
I was tempted to dump the whole thing in the trash bin – who knows what toxic waste I could release if I try to open it! But the plastic container was relatively new, and, you know, it’s the reusable kind, the from-the-freezer-to-the-microwave-to-the-t
So, I very gingerly took the container to the sink, held my breath and opened the lid vewwwwy carefully. With as little splash as possible, I poured the contents down the drain. On top of the black fluid was some kind of grayish lumpy gooey growth that stuck to the container along the edges, so after all the fluid had flowed off, the muck held on to the container.
I turned the water on to rinse it out but it held on long enough for me to imagine it would suddenly jump up onto my fingers and cling to my arm and eat me up like that organism in “The Blob”! Eww!
The muck finally fell into the drain, at which point I quickly turned on the disposal unit and doused the whole container with dishwasher detergent under scalding hot water.
I will continue to guess what it was I originally had in that container. I’m just glad to note that I have not had any unusual reactions (like itching, blisters, pulmonary congestion, fainting spells, special powers, or trips back in time) to my exposure to “the blob.”
They didn’t have the regular green cabbage at the time, and the red ones were on sale. I said, well, it can’t taste too far off the green variety, and the red color would be a funky way to make the dishes more exciting.
Exciting, indeed. It turned my saute’d corned beef even darker because the cabbage turned maroon in the cooking process. The dark curly strips among the corned beef made them look like dead worms.
I had bought a whole head of red cabbage, so after the corned beef, I still had quite a bit of head. My next cabbage-inspired dish was pancit guisado (rice noodles mixed with pork, shrimp, chicken, cilantro, and, yes, cabbage).
Julliene’d regular cabbage in pancit is supposed to add a sprinkle of green to the gold-ish chicken, red-ish shrimp, brown-ish pork, and white-ish noodles. But because I used red cabbage, my whole pancit dish turned… purple.
The pancit tasted as great as pancit should; but the mouthful of noodles, which should be whitish-gold (because of the soy sauce), they were purple! So, yes, my latest innovative noodle recipe is what I proudly call “Purple Pancit.”
But there was still half a head of red cabbage left. Next dish, beef stew (or Nilaga). We put cabbage in our beef stew – the last ingredient you throw in because it cooks quicker than the potatoes, celery, carrots, and string beans.
Well, I knew what was going to happen. The stew turned purple. It still tasted as great as beef stew should; but the soup, it looked like grape juice! So, yes, that would be my latest innovative stew recipe: “Purple Nilaga.”
Now if I had tried to add red cabbage to a chicken dish, I would most surely have ended up with… “Purple Chicken.” But I think someone already beat me to it.
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