Pride Goeth Before A Fall

First off, I apologize if I haven’t published anything for a while. Planning for SCA 50 Year is taking most of my free time right now. My Saturday nights are no longer my safe haven for writing.

And Now: My recent adventure.

Hubris can be one’s downfall. I should know – it happened to me.  Let me explain.

A couple of weeks ago, I kinda-sorta insulted my husband’s cooking. He made something that was better as a concept than a dish and I had gotten a bit rude.

Turnabout is fair play…


llewcookI don’t know about you but I LOVE Chinese food and I have been experimenting with it quite a bit of late.

Just admit it – you are hooked on Crab Rangoons, too. Do not lie to me, you know you are.

So, I bought a kit to make Chinese beef and broccoli. I love that stuff.

The directions seemed really simple. Cut up some broccoli and lightly cook with some olive oil. Then, add the prespiced beef. Finally, thaw the sauce mix and add.

So, I did. I swear I did. I followed the directions to the absolute letter.

And, I got a pan of bleah.

Completely tasteless bleah.

It looked like it should and sort of faintly smelled like it but it had all of the flavor of a wet dishtowel. It was like sucking on a tongue depressor.

Absolutely no flavor.

Is it possible to have NEGATIVE flavor?

My husband was waiting for dinner and watching while I worked and not saying a word.

So I added some onion. NOTHING.

Extra soy? BLAH.

Garlic? WHERE DID IT GO???


Wasabi? The flavor actually disappeared as thought it had been sucked into a black hole into an alternative dimension.

Nothing worked. It was as if I was pouring the spices into the ocean and hoping the seawater would taste better.

Finally, I set it down in front of the hub and tried to choke down my own.

I just couldn’t do it.

My husband tried.  I swear he really, really tried to choke it down.

It tastes as though I was eating a bowl of brown mud. Mud that had completely sucked up the $20 worth of spices I had added and gave nothing in return.

I felt used and abused by that bowl of muck.

Unable to stand it anymore, I turned to my husband and spoke the words he wanted to hear:




Chinese Beef and Broccoli


1 lb. steak

1 lb. broccoli

2 tbsps. olive oil

2 garlic cloves

2 tbsp soy sauce

2 tsp sherry

2 tsps cornstarch

1/2 tsp. black pepper

1/4 cup oyster sauce


1. Start by slicing the beef into thin strips.

2. Next place the beef in a bowl with the half of the soy sauce, sherry, 1/2 of the cornstarch and pepper and allow to marinate for about an hour.

3. While the beef marinates, cut up the broccoli into florets.

4. Heat your wok or frying pan on a medium heat and add the oil.

5. Chop the garlic and add to the pan.

6. Add the broccoli florets and 1/2 cup of water. Cover to steam for five minutes.

7. While the broccoli steams, in another bowl,whisk the rest of the soy and cornstarch with the oyster sauce.

8. Add the beef to the wok and start to brown.

9. Once lightly brown add the sauce mixture and cook for ten minutes.

10. Serve over rice.


COPYRIGHT 2016 Micheal J. Hobbs



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