Disclaimer: that blue box with the non-curving noodles and the cheese that was squeezed out of a packet? I've never had it. Add that to the list that includes Big Mac and is entitled: Yelena - Skinner Box Child. And before you go around accusing my parents of being hippies who deprived us of processed foods, let me remind you that our cereal consumption was obscene: froot loops, golden grahams, corn pops. No, we were deprived of Kraft Macaroni and "cheese" because it was a) entirely uneconomical and b) retarded. To my knowledge, you had to boil the noodles just as you would if you were making it from scratch. The only "time-saver" it afforded was that your cheese was already in goo form. WTF?!? I have no idea why people buy this crap.
This was brought into sharp relief this past weekend when I went to a truly awesome event at one of my fellow knitter's houses: a Pampered Chef party. If you are an urban gal, don't worry if you've never heard of this (though, since it's owned by Omaha's own Warren Buffet, I will guess that Amy has heard of it), it's a tupperware party of sorts. Your friend invites a person (woman) to her house to tell her friends all about the terrific things said friends can buy from the Pampered Chef catalog. And the catalog is filled with useful things like knives and pots and cutting boards and cookie cutters. While you're being pitched, you get fed recipes from pampered Chef cookbooks made with Pampered Chef mixes.
The pizza dough mix, while ridiculous to me (flour, yeast, salt...why do you need someone to pre-mix these items for you?), didn't get my panties in a bunch. After all, measuring is hard. I get it. (nb: I do not get it.) Then the dessert composition began. It was described as a chocolate tiramisu trifle. It started out well enough with the presenter whisking confectioner's sugar into mascarpone. Then things got ugly.
She added to the delicious and luxurious mascarpone Cool Whip and pudding mix. And then crumbled up brownie-like cake from, yes, a mix.
For me, this was an irony because as she was desecrating her mascarpone with cool whip, she was extolling the virtues of the Pampered Chef whisk and stainless steel bowls - 2 things that could be used to, I don't know, WHIP CREAM!!!!!
I have done it. It is annoying as all hell when you know that if only the mixer was working you could whip the cream in about 30 seconds. But there you are, in the freezing pastry kitchen whipping cream by hand - lots of cream. Way more than would be needed for a single chocolate tiramisu trifle. But you don't complain because hardcore mofos can whip their own cream.
Oh, wait, you're not a hardcore mofo? Sorry. Try this instead: pour cream into bowl of mixer; turn on mixer; wait 30 seconds; have whipped cream.
Cool Whip is made from orphan's tears. You know it, I know it, Kraft knows it (point of information: I have no idea what the cheese goo is made of - I'm guessing it's made of people). Cool whip should only ever be used ironically, preferably at the same party as cheese whiz and spaghetti-Os.
But I'm a working mom with 47 bratty kids and no time to do anything except sit on my couch and mow cool whip! you might say. I would then ignore you. Because I am not kidding when I say that, if you don't REALLY care about the consistency and perceived professionalism of the final product, whipping enough cream for one person/pie/trifle takes 30 seconds in a mixer. There will be no leftovers because every supermarket in America carries heavy cream in an 8oz. container. If you do not have 30 seconds to whip your own cream, you do not deserve whipped cream.
I had a fantastic time at the event. I bought stuff. I enjoyed it thoroughly. I thank our hostess.
But I cannot forgive the cool whip.
Chalk it up to my unconventional pinko upbringing.
2 weeks ago