I am thoroughly obsessed with Food Network, particularly with Rachael Ray. I also frequent foodnetwork.com
for recipes, menu ideas, and the like.
When I find a recipe that looks appealing, I often read the reviews and get the skinny on the finished product's saltiness, a good substitute for exotic Malaysian walnut-truffle oil, or the true number of folks that 9 inch quiche will actually feed.
I've noticed that many of the reviewers base their appraisal of a particular recipe solely on whether or not their husband "cleaned his plate" or "ate it all up."
This disturbs me fundamentally and conjures some very specific imagery that takes me back to my days in rural Arkansas.
Take these meatloaf reviews for example:Kelli from Marysville, OH
It's difficult to get my husband to try new things, but once I made this, he is requesting it all the time!
Debbie from Decatur, IL
I fixed this and my husband ate over half of it at one sitting! He couldn't get enough of this meatloaf and said it was a "keeper."
My husband had to stop himself from eating it, so I packed it up for lunch the next day.
Anonymous from West Hills, CA
I love meatloaf but my husband has always stated he hates it. In 8 years, I've never made one. When I saw this episode, I made an executive decision and if he didn't eat what was put in front of him, Taco Bell is down the street! This meatloaf was fabulous! MY HUSBAND LOVED IT, AND HAD SECONDS!
Now I don't know about you, but I'm thinkin hubby gets home about 7ish, covered in some sort of motor oil or cement mixing product, sits his distended belly down with an audible "fwap" on the dining room table, and awaits his dinner. He'd gladly take a Hungry Man meal any night of the week, but "the wife" is always cookin up somethin she says he just has to try.
He shovels in the first bite with his greasy fingers and barely swallows before belting out something to the effect of "Dangit Dolores, I dun told you I ain't into no gourmet shit. I like my meat and I like my corn. Why you always tryin to make a man starve."
After feeding his dinner to Butch, the flea-infested family mutt, he plops himself down into the reclining section of his brown, urine-stained sectional sofa, turns on Nascar, and yells "Dolores, fix me a dang pot pie and git yerself over here with a Natty Lite already."
Dolores, head down, probably holding at least one but likely two dirty children, serves him a cold one in his favorite "Life's a Beach, Then you Die" beer titty and retires to the kitchen for a Virginia Slim Ultra Light Menthol 100, a stiff Gilbey's & tonic, and a good cry.
Perhaps I'm reading a little too much into a few brief recipe reviews, but I just can't shake the visuals.
Well, I better be off to the grocery...the H likes it when I cook him up some chili and cornbread. Oh, and I think he's all out of Milwaukee's Best.