Friday, September 23, 2016

Hot dog surprise (Tarot Blog Hop)

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The theme of this Tarot Blog Hop is the foodie Tarot! Therefore, it is time to regale you with a tale from my childhood, known as Hot Dog Surprise!

(It was with some horror that one night I was cooking dinner, and thinking about this blog post, and suddenly found myself wondering...)

What Tarot card would Hot Dog Surprise be associated with?

Now, my regular readers, if I have any at all, know that I am the oldest of eight kids, and that my father lost everything when his produce business went under (the house, all of our savings [including money set aside for my college], all of his assets outside a junker of a car), landing us in a house that was the worst I have ever lived in, forcing me to go to high school in a small town (losing all my friends that I had before this point in time) where being slightly odd was almost a criminal offense.

No, I am not bitter at all. And either was my mother who took the misfortune out on all of us.

Now, there are good things to say about my mother....but when it comes to her cooking, I can't think of anything polite to say (she hated to cook--the proof of which is that my sisters were stuck with the job as soon as they were old enough to do so--I only escaped that fate because I was a boy). Basically, one just scrapped the worst of the blackness off whatever dish it was, and wolfed it down (and we were so poor that sometimes we never tasted what we were eating...which probably helped us to survive).

[Ok, there were the home-made jams and jellies...but I am not sure that it offsets the Hot Dog Surprise.]

As an adult, I have also been poor....but never poor enough to make Hot Dog Surprise.

(In my household, I actually do all the cooking because my wife hates cooking, and well, I work from home--mainly I stare at the ceiling while trying to create the perfect sentence--and I don't mind cooking. In fact, I actually like to cook...which is a sin because I am a boy--or so, my mother would say.)

Now, my wife is a picky eater with a gluten problem and a dislike of vegetables and things you can't identify--to say that she was horrified when she heard about Hot Dog Surprise is a slight understatement--she forbid me from ever making the dish, no matter how tight the food budget gets.

So what the hell is Hot Dog Surprise? And where can you get some?

Hot Dog Surprise is hot dogs and sliced bell peppers done in a savory sauce and poured over noodles.

And the secret ingredient? Well, it is not the hotdogs. It is actually Catalina salad dressing. That's right--the secret savory sauce was a bottle of salad dressing.

This is one of those times where you might think that I am making stuff up, but no, like all good comedy, it is the god-honest truth. It was hot dogs and bell peppers cooked in salad dressing and poured over noodles. One can understand my wife's "You are never going to make that ever--I will file for divorce before eating that--I will murder you in your sleep before eating that--pigs will fly before I eat that--the sun will consume the earth before I would eat that." (You know, I think that she might have a problem handling Hot Dog Surprise.)

So what Tarot card would Hot Dog Surprise be? The Death card comes to mind, but that promises some form of change in one's taste buds, food budget, or earthly existence. One could argue the Hanged Man because your world view would have to be upside down to think that Hot Dog Surprise was a good idea. (Except for one of my sisters that still makes it...because if you eat it often enough as a kid, you think that it is normal--I swear I love you sis, but I can't wrap my mind around anyone willing making this if they are not trying to poison people.) The Fool card is a good candidate...because (drumroll please) only a fool would eat this (or a straving dog...but then again, maybe the dog is trying to push the fool off the cliff because of Hot Dog Surprise).

In the end, I decided that Hot Dog Surprise is the Ten of Swords, not so much because my wife will stab me with ten swords if I make it, but rather because of the life circumstances that lead to Hot Dog Surprise being a good food budget option (and yes, the business loss was that bad).

I would have drawn a picture of it (because I am forbidden to actually cook it), but I think that you can imagine a plate of noodles covered in a reddish salad dressing with bits of bell pepper and hotdogs in it...though you might not want to imagine it (the only thing worse than imagining Hot Dog Surprise is actually eating it).

Ain't you glad that you came by to read my blog post this Tarot Blog Hop? I imagine that this post turned out to be a wonderful weight loss plan after reading about all the yummy foods that the other bloggers wrote about. (One assumes that the rest of the bloggers wrote about yummy food...but considering that I am writing this before I read any of the other blog posts, it might be possible that everyone [all fourteen, I think, of us] wrote about Hot Dog Surprise--in which case, welcome to the Drop Two Stone in a Week Because You Read About Hot Dog Surprise More Than Once Diet Plan!)

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Aisling the Bard said...

Having so much fun laughing I am not even sure I won't try Hot Dog Surprise....and loved the context of your content. After all---Tarot is, well, about LIFE, ain't it? You made me think, Morgan. Thank you!

Unknown said...

Haha, hot dog surprise is the Ten of Swords. Love it!

Vivianne said...

Hot Dog Surprise definitely shows creativity ...reminds me of Heston Blumenthal's food :)

Tarot By Arwen said...

Wow. I'm suddenly SO not hungry. LOL

Anonymous said...

Morgan, I have a feeling that your sense of humor has been an important element in your psychological survival from the challenges of your childhood. I must say that Hot Dog surprise does sound like something my New England family might actually try, but I'm still not sure what the taste combination would be like with those ingredients.

The laughter, though, was well worth learning about Hot Dog Surprise, and the Ten of Swords is almost perfect. I think I'd have voted for the Five of Pentacles. :)

Ania said...

I used to like hot dogs and then rather o/d'd on them and consequently just the idea of them makes me slightly queasy. This, however, would have me barfing :D

Joy Vernon said...

Morgan, this is truly disgusting. Which I write with a huge smile on my face. I'm with Joanne--I would have gone pentacles, the 5 is a great choice, because I'm picturing little disc-shaped slices of hot dogs in the .... I can't even think about it. Hopping forward!

Unknown said...

Oh my god, I haven't laughed so much for a long time! Thank you for sharing this! I might have tried the dish, but we don't eat pork... hmm migh try it with chicken sausages though!

I'm with Joanne on the 5 of Pentacles! But yes, 10 of Swords is a good choice as well. I

Alison said...

Catalina salad dressing was a staple in our house when we were growing up, but I don't think anyone ever thought to combine it with hot dogs... bell peppers, maybe! Not sure what card I would have chosen, but I can see how Ten of Swords works, especially given the context of your story...

Olivia Peters said...

Thanks for sharing some of your personal experiences! It is interesting to see the ways in which necessity spurs "invention." My mother and husband both grew up in households with very little, and have a lot of stories to tell about various sorts of culinary concoctions that got the job (sort of) done. I definitely could see the Magus here as well!