What is That?!

Anyone who has read my blog for a while may have seen the author of this Cooking Calamity in the comments section. Cecilia Marie Pulliam, “Ceci,” is one of my favorite supporters and prayer warriors. She’s special–just like her sense of humor!


cecis picI must admit I have created some rather memorable recipes when too tired to think, like the time I used cinnamon instead of chili powder in the taco meat. I can’t describe how that smelled. Even the dog wouldn’t eat it.

Do you know baking soda foams when substituted for cornstarch in sauces? It looks something akin to Mt. Vesuvius the second it hits the pan. It not only removes odors from the refrigerator, it also neutralizes all flavors. I am not sure how to describe what was left in the pan, but it certainly wasn’t Oriental Pepper Steak, and no, I didn’t not bother to offer any to the dog.

When I accidentally substituted the baking powder with baking soda in the tempura batter, it didn’t foam, but to this day, my husband swears the shrimp bit back.

In a vain effort to discourage other similar cooking adventures, I now keep the baking soda, the cornstarch, the cinnamon, and the chili powder in separate cupboards. However, that didn’t protect the grilled cheese.

No, I didn’t burn the bread. That would have been too obvious. This mix-up was a bit more insidious, and it wasn’t until after the first bite my error was discovered. I will only say this, it is a scientific fact you cannot scrape enough melted cheese off those individual wrappers to make a sandwich. Trust me.

In regards to pressure cookers, I no longer own one, not after the burned brussel sprouts. Evacuation was the only recourse until the air returned to non-toxic levels.

At least I remember to remove the giblet bag before roasting the turkey, unlike my daughter. Well, it was her first big family dinner.

My mother is an excellent cook, most of the time, but some of her leftover combinations rival my artistry. It was a good idea to mix the hash browns with the milk gravy, and spoon it over the hamburger patties, adding the BBQ beans was not. Then, it pays to be skeptical of anyone who would eat green guava jelly on cold boiled potatoes.

I love my sister-in-law’s wit and humor. After one of her culinary errors, she announced to her family they were having cookies instead of biscuits for breakfast. Oh well, I don’t think my family would believe it either.


ceciCecilia Marie Pulliam is an artist, writer, and an avid reader. Her blog, Out of the Closet and Into the Light, features Christian themed stories, photos of her month-long tour of Africa, her African wedding, and some of her artwork. She currently lives in Western Idaho with her husband and their fiesty little Brittany, Scout.

Her first book, And Then Came a Lion, will be published this fall.



Don’t forget:  if you’d like to contribute, for fun or as a promo op, write me and let me know.  My email address is on my Triple Edge Critique Service page. Put “Cooking Calamities” in the subject line.

About Linda W. Yezak

Author/Freelance Editor/Speaker (writing and editing topics).
This entry was posted in Cooking and Recipes and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to What is That?!

  1. Marji Laine says:

    Hysterical! I so needed the laugh this morning, Linda! Thanks for sharing Ceci’s wit with us!


  2. K.M. Weiland says:

    Hah! I’ve cooked the little paper dividers that separate sliced cheese into the sandwiches before. Yummy!


  3. Well, thank you ladies. Trust me, the retelling is more fun than the experience, unless you aren’t very hungry anyway. 🙂 Thanks for adding my cover, Linda. God bless you!


  4. Too funny…and I so can’t wait to read your book in the fall. Way to go lady!


  5. Cecilia, you are not going to believe this. I used cinnamon in place of chili powder for my chili. It smelled wonderful, but my husband quit eating it after I confessed. Ha! The next one is just as bad. On Friday, I made another large pot of chili. I kept sprinkling in chili powder, wondering why I still couldn’t taste it. Guess what. I was sprinkling in meat tenderizer. And boy is it salty! I just sent hubby after a can of “Low Sodium tomato sauce” hoping to remedy the problem. I figure if I double the recipe and leave the salt completely out this time, it should be okay.

    It’s easy to mistaken any of these three spices. I mean, if they come in the same brand and the bottles and color are identical.. Grrr! At least hubby is forgiving.


    • That is too funny! I’ll have to tell my husband, “I am not alone!” 🙂 The misery-company thing, you know. Now, I haven’t done the meat tenderizer bit – yet. My husband however fooled me with my request for Tabasco Sauce. I like it in my minestrone soup, and I dumped in my usual amount, but after awhile it started to burn my mouth, and turn my stomach. Suspicious, I read the label on the bottle. It was habanero sauce, not Tabasco. I suggested he take his reading glasses to the store the next time. But, I must add, I did eat almost half my soup before I noticed something was amiss!

      Lauren, did the low sodium tomato sauce work? I’ve heard a bit of sugar will also decrease salt in a sauce. And you are right, the bottles are too much alike! Evidently the cinnamon worked all right in the chili, it sure didn’t in the tacos.


      • Cecilia, I haven’t tried it yet. Hubby got in too late with the low-salt tomato sauce. And he brought home barbecue. So I made sandwiches last night.
        I intend to try the remedy today. My object is to double the recipe, thereby cutting the salt in half. Sure hope it works. Did I mention I threw in a peeled potato. Someone said it would soak up the salt. Well, the potato WAS salty, but I couldn’t tell much difference in the chili.
        Will adding sugar “decrease” the sodium or just “cover” the taste. I really should go for the “decrease.” It’s so brackish now it stings my mouth. I can’t afford to throw out two cans of beans, 1.2 lbs of ground beef and two cans of tomato sauce. Oh! Let’s not forget the “TWO TABLESPOONS” of meat tenderizer. Ha!


    • Linda Yezak says:

      Laurean, if you have any of those little stories you’d like to share with my readers, let me know. I’d love to host you! Write me at pprmint777@yahoo.com


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