Tuesday, April 24, 2012


When I was a kid, there was a commercial (watch it here) about an elementary school lunch lady lifelessly doling out spoonfuls of mashed potatoes. "Potatoes ... potatoes ... potatoes ..." she intones with supreme boredom. Then she bites into a Nacho Cheese Dorito. "Hm." A slyly joyous little look steals across her face. "Potatoes!" she now says with pizzazz. Then she starts sculpting the potatoes--"Sumo Wrestler ... Arc de Triomphe ... Nefertiti ... Stonehenge." The possiblities are endless ...

It could be one of the greatest commercials ever made, considering I'm still thinking about it and have remembered the featured product all this time.

The reason I was thinking about it is I felt like blogging about potatoes. I love potatoes (Irish roots showing?). I love them so much I could make a diced potato fried in oil or a microwaved potato with butter or even a boiled potato with salt the centerpiece of my dinner (just add an egg and a vegetable)--and I'd still consider it an exciting and delicious meal!

Perhaps I have such simple tastes because I'm lazy and don't want to cook something elaborate. Or maybe because as a kid/teenager I so often had to eat foods I didn't care for. But I tend to have a very simple, "bachelor-style" approach to cooking dinner.

Poor Brandon has never been a fan of this. He does not get excited about having a plain boiled potato for dinner. (Go figure!) So--well, actually, most of the time, if he complains I just tell him he can cook something more elaborate himself. But more recently I've been trying to jazz things up. And, as the aforementioned lunch lady discovered, potatoes have vast potential!

A little while ago I boiled potatoes in broth, added spinach, pureed, added cream, and it made a most exquisite, Brandon-worthy soup. All you need for an excellent potato salad is to toss the boiled potatoes with mayo and add crumbled bacon and green onion. This week I was remembering that there exists a culinary entity called "potato skins"--when's the last time I had those?--I don't think I've ever made them myself--but they're just the kind of fatty, artery-clogging food that will put a smile on Brandon's face.

What is the point of this post? I don't know. I guess that people like Brandon, who can really enjoy a tasty simple meal, can inspire people like me, who can get an almost absurd amount of enjoyment from a very bare-bones meal, to raise their standards just slightly--and as a result--oh, what glorious heights of gustatory pleasure may daily be enjoyed! I marvel and am amazed that there could be even more delicious and exciting food to eat on a daily basis than even a boiled potato with salt! What a world of wonders we live in!

Now laugh at this funny video (and prepare some potatoes for eating yourself! Enjoy them thoroughly!):

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