When you've gotta pretend you're enjoying a meal and other stories

ShoppingTelly

Help Support ShoppingTelly:

merryone

Registered Shopper
Joined
Jun 24, 2008
Messages
6,394
Location
brighton
Ego mate, yup I still haven't ditched her, like I say we've had a past, and largely have a good time when we visit her. We've tried inviting her over to ours to eat, but she usually makes an excuse, I'm not offended as I get the impression she doesn't like being out of her comfort zone, she likes to do the cooking, the arranging and organising. She's been texting me for a few weeks saying she wanted to arrange an a "extravagant" dinner for us one weekend when are you free...we were free Saturday just gone so we went along. I joined her mid afternoon and hubby who had to worked turned up later.

She told me that I'd be "amazed" by the starter she'd created, she said I won't give too much away, but do you like Roquefort? I said I love roquefort, then she told me that the roquefort she uses for this recipe has got to be at least 3 months out of date, yes I was a bit worried as despite knowing that most of these "date codes" are put there to protect the retailer - This particular cheese which is strong and smelly as it is, will started to smell of ammonia and be rather unpleasant.

Meanwhile in the kitchen a chicken was ready to go into the oven, a large tray of vegetables to roast, yay I said I love roast chicken...my favourite - yes but I'm doing my version of Nigella's 40 cloves garlic chicken - Mmm sounds great I said!

We sat down later around the table, out came some bowls, some bread rolls....so I was expecting some soup...A large tray of roasted vegetables appeared in the centre of the table, may I say looking extremely overcooked, and the seemed to be swimming in some kind of brown sludge..She passed me a serving spoon and said "tuck in". Quickly realised by the smell that this is where the roquefort came into play...Yep she'd roasted the veg in gone off cheese - Thankfully it wasn't completely inedible, but it really wasn't very pleasant..trouble is we were at a loss as to what to say...but soon she got the ball rolling...by saying it's delicious isn't it? Ooh yes I said...Have some more she said...I said no I want to save some room for dinner, so got away with that one!

Dinner, in came a bowl of garlic cloves, then she returned not with a delicious roast chicken on a platter complete with crispy skin...but a large casserole dish, containing what I can only describe as looking like a bowl of vomit! For some reason beyond my comprehension, she'd stripped all the chicken from the carcass, shredded it up and mixed it up with what I think was marscapone cheese, but could've been yoghurt and stirred it together, and other than the garlic added no other seasoning whatsoever - This she served with a chunk of boiled rice and some peas - I kid you not it was absolutely vile...Couldn't tell her that obviously, but I found it incredibly difficult to eat, the sight, the texture, the taste....OMG! Hubby said..thank you it's lovely (being polite cause I could tell he was struggling too) and she leant over and dolloped some more onto his plate, eventually he said I'm sorry I'm rather full I don't think I can finish it - So you won't be wanting any cheesecake then...His favourite, so he said Oh I'd love some but perhaps I'll have some later - Very diplomatic..so we helped her clear up and indeed had a lovely slice of cheesecake later!

Other things a day with my friend cannot go by without the boasting, firstly how the tomatoes and the green beans in the starter were all home grown but the funniest one was this. "You've seen our new display cabinet haven't you?" She knows I have because I was it was delivered the last time I was round there funnily enough...so I reminided her of that, of course she said, but kinda led me towards it..looks great doesn't it and such a bargain. It's a large pine unit with drawers at the bottom and shelves at the top behind a glass door, on the shelves were wine glasses, a few cups and plates, and a "thank you" card inside of card facing outwards so the greeting inside was on show..."Caroline - thank you for being such a wonderful colleague, you have helped me so much and given me such wonderful advice, I passed my exam - I couldn't have done it without you, you are amazing xxx Did make me chuckle to myself, she's right to be proud, I would've been too, and I'm sure she'd have rather just passed me the card to look at, but maybe she thought that was too "egotistical" even by her standards...so decided to place it face out and draw attention to it via the cabinet lol!

Finally, they've befriended an elderly lady a few doors up the road, they've been doing a bit of shopping for her when they do their shopping, and she told me she's been putting left overs from their dinners into microwaveable containers for her to freeze and eat later...very sweet..until I heard her say "Brian, how much shall we charge her for this one?"
 
I hope she didn't freeze any left overs from the "extravagant" meal for the elderly neighbour :mysmilie_11:and charged her for it yuck ��

Not the rotten cheese dish 'cause believe it or not they polished the lot off - each to their own I guess, but the chicken and rice...yes! I was knocked sideways when I heard she was charging her! I'm all for friendship and kindess towards one's elderly neighbours, but doing it for financial gain just isn't on as far as I'm concerned!
 
You really could not make that up, it sounds revolting and I am unable to tolerate blue cheese as it seems to be a cause for migraines (had some wonderful soup once and it triggered a violent four day migraine), came back to work and asked what had been in the soup. cauli and stilton!!!! Argh

I think you and your husband deserve a medal for your forebearance! :)
 
You really could not make that up, it sounds revolting and I am unable to tolerate blue cheese as it seems to be a cause for migraines (had some wonderful soup once and it triggered a violent four day migraine), came back to work and asked what had been in the soup. cauli and stilton!!!! Argh

I think you and your husband deserve a medal for your forebearance! :)

Hubby's none to keen on her, and has often asked why I bother with her - I've told him it's because of our past, and on the whole I enjoy her company and when I do see her, especially one to one - The bigger the audience, the louder she becomes and the bigger the ego. Since her teenage years she's enjoyed cooking and did a catering course at technical college, although this didn't lead her to a job in the industry but has remained a "hobby cook". She's a whizz with bread, she uses a bread maker but has got it down to a fine art, makes breads, pizza dough, does a mean game pie but other than that her cooking in general is pretty ****** awful. Needless to say she thinks she's amazing and is "out to impress" and fishes for compliments at every opportunity, and if they're not forthcoming, she'll give them to herself! When both of us visit, I feel pretty stressed as my hubby has nothing in common with her hubby, like a lot of fellas, they'll find some kind of common ground to start with, usually sport to chat about or watch - Her hubby is not a fan of sport, so any kind of conversation on that topic is stopped dead in its tracks....He's a mild mannered chap (not say my hubby isn't)who is completely under Caroline's thumb and is there at her beck and call, most coversations are led by her, and if anyone remembers Renee and Roy from the fast show - That's them to an absolute T...."What did I say Roy?" And what's also cringeworthy is their public displays of affection. Thankfully it's not full on canoodling, but "suggestive" conversations between the two of them, baby talk and the odd tickling match where they end up rolling around the settee, screaming and whooping like a pair of adolescents! Hubby and I are sat on the other settee not quite knowing where to look! Hubby's tried talking about some of the big shows he likes to watch on tv that so many people are watching (eg Line of Duty) in order to get some kind of dialogue going, but again falls flat on his face because, he's not into that kind of thing and she'll chip in "No we don't have much time for TV in this house do we babe, with a simper and a wink" - "No, Darling, I'm too busy watching you!"
So you may ask, why does my hubby accompany me? Believe me, it's not for the want of him trying to get out of it, for example this last meal she'd planned she was adamant she wanted to do it on a day we were both free, ad I tried saying...Oh he's working, can't make it, so she just offered another date up - I get the impression she was so thrilled with the "rotten cheese dish" she wanted to showcase it...but it's the chicken...OMG...I can still blinking well taste it when I think about it...Nightmare!
 
I think you and your hubs are very brave, maybe next time see if you can both change your shifts on the day before and suddenly not be free?? It sounds tortuous! ;-)
 
I think you and your hubs are very brave, maybe next time see if you can both change your shifts on the day before and suddenly not be free?? It sounds tortuous! ;-)

Definitely, especially for him, but it makes it tortous for me because I'm aware of how unpleasant it is for him it that makes sense. Next time I'll def make an excuse for him and if that means making a last minute excuse, then so be it. My psychology for her is this...she was an extremely quiet and shy child, living in the shadow of her elder sister, who got went to grammar school was good at everything, passed driving test on 17th birthday etc...much more attractive. Parents gave her plenty of freedom, whereas Caroline was mollycoddled, kept off school sick for the slightest of things. Sister more academic, Caroline couldn't compete even though she was pretty bright herself, decided to be good at homemaking skills, cooking, knitting etc etc hence embarked on cookery course after leaving school. Didn't lead anywhere but got a weekend job helping out in a respite centre for young disabled people/people with learning disablities. She found a lot of satisfaction in helping others but overall I think the job made her feel needed and important.She got married and had her son,and hoped to have more, but it wasn't to be Eventually she studied social work and is now a fully fledged social worker. She has worked extremely hard over the years and has a lot to be proud of...and she has nothing to do with her sister any more (her sister is lovely by the way) nevertheless I think being in her shadow in those early years helped shape the way she is. Sister was just one of those people who seemed good at everything naturally without having to make any effort, didn't help that she was a lot more attractive,tall naturally slim, very pretty, whereas Caroline is about 5 inches shorter and really has to watch her weight.Not only did her sister get a job as a language teacher, she's worked overseas, and just happens to be a brilliant artist, she has her own studio and sells her work. Juliette (sister)has never had to "shout" about her successes, they're just there if that makes sense. Caroline has had to work hard at it.....yes she's done well for her self, but it does make her rather unbearable company at times!
 
I sympathise, I was the youngest of a set of four cousins, very mollycoddled (I would go so far as to say spoiled rotten to a degree, even my parents' friends indulged me), my Mother was Greek and had her son that shines from every orifice much before me, my two cousins were musical and clever, as was my brother I long felt I was a pale reflection of them. Of course, it helps to find one's niche and I did eventually, but having a massive case of imposter syndrome is tough to live with. Good luck to her, but to save your digestions, I should avoid all home cooked meals with her LOL
 
An update almost a year to the date of the gone off cheese extravaganza...We usually do a mid year xmas dinner at hers for a laugh..normally this consists of me and hubby, her and her hubby and her son and his girlfriend if they're around...This year for some reason she decided to invite the world and his wife...and the date was scheduled as usual for sometime at the end of June, because of the sheer volume of people she'd invited, inevitably many couldn't make it..so it was rescheduled about 10 times...and finally it happened yesterday. Try and cut a long story short..food wasn't actually too bad, but because so many people and about 9 different vegetables it was difficult to serve up 12 people round a cramped table...so basically had to eat food as soon as you got it on to the plate so didn't really eat a meal in the sense of the word....Turkey was carved last as the veg was sitting on the table getting cold. Told to bring yourself your favourite tipple cos due to numbers they'll provide the food n fun and you bring your own drink. Bought a nice cold bottle of Cava from the shop....got there, she opened it and promptly poured it round everybody...so I ended up with a small glassful. Others had brought red wine...don't drink it, soft drink..whoopppee, and cider..don't drink that either! She said don't worry I've got more wine...but when I found out it was Lambrini...I was gutted! We didn't play the games that were promised as for some unbeknown reason they decided they'd sort out their financial affairs in the morning and when I got there the dinner table was strewn will official documents and paperwork. Not a bad day if I'm honest...I made an excuse for hubby,so he didn't have to go through it. Heard her giving her rotten recipe for the mouldy cheese/vegetable recipe to another guest...I could hear her saying ....mmmm sounds delicious etc...I was laughing inside I can tell you. Glad to get home. The funny thing is she said after was I'm gonna invite even more people next year...omg!!!
 
Ego mate, yup I still haven't ditched her, like I say we've had a past, and largely have a good time when we visit her. We've tried inviting her over to ours to eat, but she usually makes an excuse, I'm not offended as I get the impression she doesn't like being out of her comfort zone, she likes to do the cooking, the arranging and organising. She's been texting me for a few weeks saying she wanted to arrange an a "extravagant" dinner for us one weekend when are you free...we were free Saturday just gone so we went along. I joined her mid afternoon and hubby who had to worked turned up later.

She told me that I'd be "amazed" by the starter she'd created, she said I won't give too much away, but do you like Roquefort? I said I love roquefort, then she told me that the roquefort she uses for this recipe has got to be at least 3 months out of date, yes I was a bit worried as despite knowing that most of these "date codes" are put there to protect the retailer - This particular cheese which is strong and smelly as it is, will started to smell of ammonia and be rather unpleasant.

Meanwhile in the kitchen a chicken was ready to go into the oven, a large tray of vegetables to roast, yay I said I love roast chicken...my favourite - yes but I'm doing my version of Nigella's 40 cloves garlic chicken - Mmm sounds great I said!

We sat down later around the table, out came some bowls, some bread rolls....so I was expecting some soup...A large tray of roasted vegetables appeared in the centre of the table, may I say looking extremely overcooked, and the seemed to be swimming in some kind of brown sludge..She passed me a serving spoon and said "tuck in". Quickly realised by the smell that this is where the roquefort came into play...Yep she'd roasted the veg in gone off cheese - Thankfully it wasn't completely inedible, but it really wasn't very pleasant..trouble is we were at a loss as to what to say...but soon she got the ball rolling...by saying it's delicious isn't it? Ooh yes I said...Have some more she said...I said no I want to save some room for dinner, so got away with that one!

Dinner, in came a bowl of garlic cloves, then she returned not with a delicious roast chicken on a platter complete with crispy skin...but a large casserole dish, containing what I can only describe as looking like a bowl of vomit! For some reason beyond my comprehension, she'd stripped all the chicken from the carcass, shredded it up and mixed it up with what I think was marscapone cheese, but could've been yoghurt and stirred it together, and other than the garlic added no other seasoning whatsoever - This she served with a chunk of boiled rice and some peas - I kid you not it was absolutely vile...Couldn't tell her that obviously, but I found it incredibly difficult to eat, the sight, the texture, the taste....OMG! Hubby said..thank you it's lovely (being polite cause I could tell he was struggling too) and she leant over and dolloped some more onto his plate, eventually he said I'm sorry I'm rather full I don't think I can finish it - So you won't be wanting any cheesecake then...His favourite, so he said Oh I'd love some but perhaps I'll have some later - Very diplomatic..so we helped her clear up and indeed had a lovely slice of cheesecake later!

Other things a day with my friend cannot go by without the boasting, firstly how the tomatoes and the green beans in the starter were all home grown but the funniest one was this. "You've seen our new display cabinet haven't you?" She knows I have because I was it was delivered the last time I was round there funnily enough...so I reminided her of that, of course she said, but kinda led me towards it..looks great doesn't it and such a bargain. It's a large pine unit with drawers at the bottom and shelves at the top behind a glass door, on the shelves were wine glasses, a few cups and plates, and a "thank you" card inside of card facing outwards so the greeting inside was on show..."Caroline - thank you for being such a wonderful colleague, you have helped me so much and given me such wonderful advice, I passed my exam - I couldn't have done it without you, you are amazing xxx Did make me chuckle to myself, she's right to be proud, I would've been too, and I'm sure she'd have rather just passed me the card to look at, but maybe she thought that was too "egotistical" even by her standards...so decided to place it face out and draw attention to it via the cabinet lol!

Finally, they've befriended an elderly lady a few doors up the road, they've been doing a bit of shopping for her when they do their shopping, and she told me she's been putting left overs from their dinners into microwaveable containers for her to freeze and eat later...very sweet..until I heard her say "Brian, how much shall we charge her for this one?"

I think I would have developed a (temporary) dairy intolerance and been unable to eat what they prepared.

Either your "mate" is delusional about their cooking ability, or they know fine well and are amusing themselves by seeing how sh***y a meal they can prepare and get others too rave about!

And what a waste of good ingredients. The whole idea of good cookery is to take ingredients and show them off to their best advantage. Not make a wreck out of them.
 
I think I would have developed a (temporary) dairy intolerance and been unable to eat what they prepared.

Either your "mate" is delusional about their cooking ability, or they know fine well and are amusing themselves by seeing how sh***y a meal they can prepare and get others too rave about!

And what a waste of good ingredients. The whole idea of good cookery is to take ingredients and show them off to their best advantage. Not make a wreck out of them.

This year the food was alright! I was pleasantly surprised that she managed to cook dinner for 12 people and produce veg that wasn't soggy, gravy that looked like gravy instead of the usual white glob she serves up...had this been a meal for between 4-6 people it would have been very good indeed, but she wanted to show off to as many as possible and had she had more room or the equipment to serve it up buffet style it would've worked better. It was so cramped and awkward we were literally just having to eat as an when food hit our plates. This xmas dinner thing has been a tradition for us for a few years now and it was just literally her and her hubby, me and mine...but due to all the "likes" on facebook over the years she's decided to extend the invitation to everybody she knows. It was supposed to be a bit of fun...now it's just an ego fest and that's a real shame cos it was uncomfortable and chaotic...and she has hailed this as a success and says she's gonna invite even more people next year....Perhaps she should hire a hall next time!
 
....and of course deciding to sort out important legal paperwork when you've got 10 guests arriving, but that's very "her"! I'm sure she was hoping we'd think or even better, say "How amazing are you cooking a dinner for 12 and sorting out your affairs at the same time..Trouble is, the "look" was far from amazing it was a scene of pure chaos..They'd had got one of the guests to proof read the documents and she was going to be a witness and sign the document, however, she found a couple of small errors that needed to be corrected and Brian, my mate's hubby went into meltdown and started crying like a baby...at first I thought he was joking, so I'm glad I didn't say anything jokey! I really can't get my head around why they chose the same weekend to sort this matter out. They actually have a "home/office" in the garden so there's no reason on earth why the paperwork couldn't have been contained there, and proof read the day before, or perhaps another time altogether...Not spread across the table we were all due to sit at. For a change, the food was the best part of the day. We did attempt to play a board game after dinner but it was far too chaotic as there was too many people to make it work out right. I love it that she likes to entertain and is so hospitable, but she stretches herself too far in order to get the compliments....Yes she gets them but sadly, they're given out of pure politeness and "likes" on facebook aren't a geniune picture of people's actual thoughts and feelings..It's a quick click to keep the peace, friendship going if that makes sense! I sent her a private message to thank her for the dinner, and that to me would count more than 100 people clicking the like button..but she needs the public recognition..and it's a shame!
 
Of course, if it's now become a mass event, how long before she is charging for the meal? If she's prepared to charge an elderly neighbour for what are essentially left-overs, why not?
 
I love a bit of Stilton, or Danish Blue, but I draw the line at Roquefort - bleurrgghh! Bad enough if it's within date, but probably asking for Botulism or something if it's 3 months past it. :puke:
 
Bless her heart..she's texted me to say as it's my birthday next month she'd like to invite us round to give me my pressie and cook a special meal for me ..you choose. I mean such a lovely thought, and despite everything, she is really kind and thoughtful..However, I don't really relish the idea of having something horrible and not appreciating it..So I thanked her and said we'd love to come and do you know what I fancy? A good old fashioned lasagne...I slipped in "good old fashioned" to subliminally tell her that I don't want it made with dodgy roquefort, or with home made pasta made out of potato peelings and wood shavings...Ok there's still the worry she'll add her own "twist" to the sauce eg..sweet martini or Lambrini..but we'll see. I have high hopes for this one...I'll let you know!
 
Bless her heart..she's texted me to say as it's my birthday next month she'd like to invite us round to give me my pressie and cook a special meal for me ..you choose. I mean such a lovely thought, and despite everything, she is really kind and thoughtful..However, I don't really relish the idea of having something horrible and not appreciating it..So I thanked her and said we'd love to come and do you know what I fancy? A good old fashioned lasagne...I slipped in "good old fashioned" to subliminally tell her that I don't want it made with dodgy roquefort, or with home made pasta made out of potato peelings and wood shavings...Ok there's still the worry she'll add her own "twist" to the sauce eg..sweet martini or Lambrini..but we'll see. I have high hopes for this one...I'll let you know!

you are very brave!
 
It's the morning after and here's the update.

It looked like lasagne! It would probably be funnier if I left it at that but I'm sorry I've gotta tell you..........

Firstly I'll give her 110% for her effort as a lot of time and trouble would've gone into making it!

It's a four cheese lasagne she said as she plonked this enormous plate onto the table.....she dished us all up a massive portion....It sliced well and didn't collapse all over the place...It looked like lasagne...it looked like a good lasagne too! Sadly though, it was all down hill from there!

I took a mouthful.....and it had a rather unusual twang which was not altogether pleasant. The pasta had a strange sponge like quality...and the cheese also had a distinctive twang and last but not least, the sauce wasn't very "saucy" which wasn't helped by the sizeable chunks of partially cooked green pepper she'd put in it for some reason. "Right, she said...can you guess what the four cheeses are" Cheddar, I offered?...Nope...ok Parmesan....Yep, that's one of them, Blue cheese I said (thinking..roquefort..eek) Nope, no blue cheese in it...shall I tell you? Go on then ...Dairy free cheese..it's made out of coconut milk, parmesan, manchego and goat log! Goat cheese!!!!! I do like goat cheese...but I now realised what the twang was..it was just too overpowering in a dish like this.

She made the pasta herself...and said you'd never have guessed would you? I did actually wonder why it had such a spongy texture, but was obviously too polite to say...then it came down the meat content...can you guess what the meat is....Beef, I offered? Nope...Pork? nope, Quorn? almost she said. It's a mixture of half veggie mince and half venison mince....delicious isn't it??? Oh blimmin' dear...I have quite an intolerance to veggie mince..Im ok with Quorn products..but most other forms of veggie mince..give me the most terrible pain, bloating and toxic wind! Thankfully the effects didn't come into play until we'd left to go home...but I felt flipping awful...I'm much better today, but my stomach does still feel a little on the heavy side!

Food aside, enjoyable evening..Funny comments from her..."You've always loved my cooking haven't you, can you name something I've cooked for you that you've haven't loved" Thinking inside ..it'd be harder to name something I actually have liked...but it came out as "No, I can't!"...Then she turned to oh and said what about you? "No he said, it's always delicious!.....Then how about taking the rest of the lasagne home? I said....Oh aren't you going to give (sell) it to the old lady up the road? Nah, she's moved into a nursing home!...I said no, you keep it, you can have it another day...she said no you're alright I've got all my meals planned for this week! So it was potted up and put into a carrier bag, which I'm guilty to say is now in the bin!

I asked for a good old fashioned Lasagne......It looked like a lasagne!
 
If she suggests you go for another meal, I’d buy fish and chips or similar to take round with you. It might be kinder on your digestive system. :wink:
 

Latest posts

Back
Top