Friday, February 8, 2013

Secret Subject Swap: a bad taste in my mouth....

Thank THE DICKENS it's Friday! And this week I'm getting my chance to take part in the famous Secret Subject Swap, hosted by blog hostess with the mostess, Karen over at Baking in a Tornado.

I've wanted in on this little swaray since I first saw my friend Shelly Bean was piloting the Subject Swap back in October. Who knew all I had to do was ask? Lucky for me Karen squeezed me into her second February slot, and here I am. As my two year old would say:

Ta Daaa!

This week, 14 brave blogging souls (including Momma) are taking part. Each of us picked a secret subject which was secretly assigned to another blogger to interpret in their own style.

Today as the clock strikes 9:00am here in Texas (very likely 'let's crap-o'clock' all round in the Bisett household) we are simultaneously divulging our topics and submitting our posts. Let's get started!

My subject is “The most unusual thing I've ever tasted was....” and was submitted by Come Play In The Kitchen!.  Here goes:

Hmmmmmm, the most unusual thing I've ever tasted.........

I usually eat these prompts up for breakfast, but this one took a LOT of thinking about for Momma. See, I've eaten some pretty strange things in the past, like intestines, and turtle, and God knows what else went down the hatch back in my oilfield and backpacking days (I dread to think!)

I lived out in the sticks in China for over a year (need I say more?)

But in all honesty, I can't say that any of those unidentified species (and unidentified body parts) ever TASTED all that strange. Nowhere near as strange a the raspberry worming medicine Mum used to make us drink periodically when we were kids. My brothers would chug down that 'milkshake'. Not I. I would sip then gag, sip then gag, sip then.... you get the idea. I would torture myself this way for over an hour. While my Mum would hover over me saying really sympathetic stuff like

"Josie, for Goodness sake! Just drink the bloody thing!" and other useful stuff like "If you hold your nose you won't taste it."

Yeah, right. I only fell for that the once.

Mercifully I'd forgotten about this worming drink until last year when a mommy friend gave me a raspberry milk-based cocktail at MNO (Mom's Night Out). I reflex gagged after the first sip and it brought 'it' all back up. 'It' being the buried memory of being wormed, and not my dinner. In spite of my well mannered upbringing I couldn't hold back my revulsion at the cocktail drink. I'm not sure if my likening her cocktail to worming medicine went down too well with the Mommy host but it was a fun story to share nevertheless.

It turned out neither they (nor my hubs, I found out later) were wormed as kids. Huh? Apparently they only do that to cats and dogs over on this side of the pond. Interesting....

The next time I tasted something so strange that the memory grew deep seated roots, was the first time I put a black olive in my mouth in Greece. I was 14. (This revelation was a huge shocker for the hubs, when he proofread my post. You'd think he'd just read '...the first time I put a black (ahem) in my mouth I was 14' !!Apparently he was eating black olives out of a can when he was three. Well, good for him!)

In any case, all I can say about that black olive is BIG nasty salty yuk! I'm not sure which was nastier; that first salty olive or the first time I put a........ umm, never mind.

Next up was tequila. I was 16 18 and I think my shudder lasted a good 60 seconds, and went all the way down to my toes and back up again.

Usually though, when it comes to food, I'm not fussy. I'm a Brit, so I grew up on bland food a meat and potatoes girl.

British Gourmet: Bangers and mash.
Notice the kid-friendly sliced sausages? Safety First!

Fish and chips on a Saturday, and a curry every now and then to spice up my life was everything my innocent taste buds desired. These are still the foods I long for when I think of home..

I'm no chef. (Hard to believe I know, but really it's true.) I can whip up a basic chili and carbonara like nobody's business. I can ever make a mean stir-fry and spag bog, and sometimes they're pretty scrum-diddly-yummy. Not always (the hubs is nodding). I will say this for myself, though, my cooking is ALWAYS unique.

But only because I don't do recipes.

For one thing I don't stock my pantry up with staple ingredients (like everybody tells me I should). Secondly, I don't have the patience to measure out the exact quantities, or wait for the right moment to add stuff. (thirdly, I've never liked being told what to do)

The hubs on the other hand is great with recipes.

If I want to cook something (it doesn't happen too often) I Google it first, buy the stuff in, or pull out close-enough substitutions from the cupboard (I'm thrifty and lazy), then I set him to work in the kitchen with his iPad. I'm the grocery shopper, the food brain-stormer, and veg chopper (hopefully I'll soon start job sharing with the Cuisinart.) He is the creator, or the artist if you will. We make quite a team.

Even if I have cooked something all by myself (chili or spag bog) I always step aside at the last minute and let him add flavor. He needs it, I don't. But I'll scarf it down either way.

I don't love cooking.

But I do love other people's cooking. I don't think I've ever eaten a bad meal that someone else has made for me. (Unless of course, they used raisins and/or tequila (ugh). My pregnancies have cured me of my olive hatred. Go figure?)

This brings me back around to my secret subject. The *most unusual thing I've ever tasted (and I'm adding the next clause) as a Mommy, was a baked 'treat' one of my favorite Mommy friends - my placenta eating Mommy friend (yep, that deserves an entire post all of its own) - brought over for me and the boys to try a few weeks back.......

(*and by most unusual what I mean is most Goddamn awful yuckiest)

These 'treats' were healthy (that should have been the first clue), vegan (another BIG tell tale sign) and bean-based (alarms going off in my brain now) chocolate brownies that were supposed to taste no different to real brownies (and did I mention she EATS her own placenta?)

They were nas-tee!

I had to race over to the trash can and spit that shit out.

When I turned around though, I was astounded to see my 23 month old was wolfing them down. That kid will eat anything! I didn't put a stop to his brownie gorge. It wasn't like he could ruin his teeth, or OD on the absent sugar. These were healthy bean desserts. Hell, maybe this Earth Mama's magical brownie treat would tick all my kid's nutrition boxes without me pulling out fish sticks for dinner.

I knew I'd be dealing with a little farty britches later - even better value!

Plus his obvious delight in eating those nasty brownies was making my friend feel a tad bit better about her baking experiment, especially after I'd unceremoniously spit mine out into the garbage. (To be fair she'd warned me they weren't 'for the mommas', which meant she thought they were pretty rank herself).

But it takes a LOT for me to spit my food out. Especially food with chocolate in it.

By the time little brother was ploughing into brownie #3 my 3 year old (S-boy) was still slowly gnawing away on his first bean brownie. Sometimes he eats the tastiest of treats agonizingly slowly in order to savor the sweet longer. That wasn't what was happening here. I could tell he wanted so desperately to like his sweet treat. But the look on his face said it all.

The poor kid had been on sweets detox since Christmas. The delight in his face when he spied the brownies was akin to the excitement I saw when I made meatloaf cupcakes (What a disaster that turned out to be: the (not so) sneaky chef.)

I could tell he was with his Momma on his less than fond feelings with regards the bean brownie, but he persevered nevertheless. I think he would have given up at the get-go if his little brother hadn't so obviously loved them. That had confused the shit out of him.

Eventually I told him he didn't have to eat it (as if I'd ever make him eat a brownie!). I kindly suggested he could give it to his brother if he liked.

"Here you go {L-boy}!" he said, before sliding off his chair and disappearing into the next room to play with his friend. L-boy (little brother) eagerly accepted the half gnawed on treat and polished off bean brownie #4.

Because my little manny had an affinity for these gross brownies, that no one else seemed to, my friend left the bag so I could feed my bottomless pit baby boy more fart fuel.

The very next day I offered these magic bean brownies to a different mommy friend. I made sure to give her the same warning I was given. The same thing happened. She gagged and spit out her mouthful (I think she did it a little more delicately into a tissue, not the trash can, though).

My eldest tried really hard again to like it and failed miserably. My friend's kid was unimpressed. L-boy finished off the bag. (Go figure?).

The day after that there was a group play date at the second mommy friend's house. The first mommy friend - the one who was responsible for baking this 'treat' (is this confusing at all?) - showed up with some more of (yes, you've guessed it) those infamous bean brownies!

Now I'm not sure what had changed. Maybe it was the party atmosphere; the balloons and the bouncy castle. Or maybe it was the fact that vegetable and fruit offerings were the sole competition to these magical bean 'brownies'. Or maybe the kids were so occupied they hadn't picked up on the 'it's not really a brownie brownie, it's a healthy bean brownie brownie' convo.

But whatever, when those brownies were put out on the kids' snack table, the children descended like vultures to carrion, including S-boy, and there was barely a crumb left on the table. I even heard one of the mommas 'mmmm- mmm-ing'  as she licked her fingers after eating one. WTF?  

I think I want to try these out again for size. Maybe I'll make these 'treats' for L-boy's birthday play-date next week instead of cup-cakes. I'll let you know how that lead balloon goes down.

The Most Unusual Tasting Brownies Ever Recipe (Go Momma's version):

Black Beans (some)
*Honey (sweetened to taste) [Do vegan's eat honey? I think the original recipe called for sugar but this was Earth Mama's substitute. Maybe I'll substitute with some Aunt Jemima]
Oats (a handful) [Earth Mama forgot these. It may have been the crucial ingredient!]
Cinnamon (a sprinkle I guess)
Mushy banana (two or three maybe)

Directions: Mush it all together and squash into baking tray.... Hell, I don't even know if you're supposed to bake the stuff!!!


Here are the links to all the participating sites in Take Two - February Secret Subject Swap. Sit back, grab a cup, and check them out. See you there!

Baking in a Tornado
Come Play In The Kitchen!

The Sadder But Wiser Girl                       
Suburbia Interrupted                        
Stacy Sews and Schools
The Mommy Ref
Macdonald's Playland
The Adventures of the Family Pants
Adventures in Hickley Land
Dawn's Disaster
Sorry Kid, Your Mom Doesn't Play Well With Others
Black Sheep Mom


  1. Ha ha ha, I laughed through this whole post. Bean brownies should be against the law! So glad you joined in.

  2. I am using the bean brownies as the newest threat in my household. "Oh, you not going to clean your room after I have asked you three times? Fine...bean brownies and a raspberry de-worming shake for you!"

  3. Bean brownies? Tequila? WORMING DRINK???? OMG Josie this post is HILARIOUS!!!! I DIED laughing over the part when your husband told you the worm drink was for pets (my belly jiggles every time I think of it) and your friend spitting out the brownie. This is one of my favorite posts of yours. Well played, my friend. NOW--I have a challenge for YOU if you are interested--I tagged you in my new blog post today along with several other bloggers. Take a peek and let me know if you are up for it--I hope so because I would LOVE to see you blog about it!

    1. Thank you Marcia, I'm grinning from ear to ear after reading your comment :D I am SO up for this challenge - and I am so incredibly chuffed you thought of me!

  4. Oh my goodness!!!! ROFLOL!!!

    BTW, I also hate black olives. BLECK!!!

    And bean brownies?? Brownies should only ever be the real thing. LOL

  5. I am laughing so hard I may need oxygen soon! My kiddies love the ooey-gooey chocolate brownies I make, but I was actually debating on baking a recipe I recently discovered for brownies that had beans in them, just to make them a healthy snack...Uh...Not too sure about it now! Thanks so much for sharing!

    1. Haha! No, you should try it! I'd love to hear how your kids dig your beany brownies. The kids at the play date scarfed 'em down like nobody's business! So they definitely work for some..... Mind you , if they're used to sublime ooey-gooey yumminess you're probably SOL ;)

  6. Oh man. I thought I misread when I saw deworming. Lol! Bean brownies are the definition of cruel and unusual punishment,this post however was an awesome reward for blog hopping! Thanks for the laughs and great post!

  7. All I know is I'm diggin' that pic of those mashed potatoes... I'm a "meat & potatoes" guy too and they look great. The gravy is "icing" on the cake.

    Ha... Good funny post. Take care, Slu

  8. I had to read this twice... Bean browines... I bet they looked like the pile they tasted like...*shudder*
    Hilarious, as usual

  9. Josie, I'm mortified by the de-worming thing! I feel slightly (only slightly) less grossed out by non-chocolate/bean brownies. You poor thing!
    I am so glad to see you have joined the swap! I love reading what other people come up with. I hope we get to be in the same group soon! Now, go rinse your mouth out with a Hershey bar <3

  10. Ha ha , I will forever remember bean brownies.

  11. I thought this was about me at first!!!! I made chocolate (shhhh bean) cupcakes for Dove's 1st birthday and a whole wheat strawberry cake, but remember now that only Hubs and Sboy came as you and Lboy were home sick. We make them often with sweetened fruit puree glaze topping. YUM. I will email the recipe to you ;-) My recipe is completely different and can be vegan or just gluten-free. They don't keep long and are rather expensive to make for the yield compared to typical wheat treats.
    I did ingest my placenta, too. Although in dried encapsulated pill form. It was as easy as an extra four vitamins a day.
    I am so sorry that you had to endure worming as a child in England! Gross!

    1. Haha, the friend in the story 'ingested' hers too. She didn't sit at the table all civilized like Hannibal Lecter with a knife and fork (like I first imagined;). The image the word 'eat' conjures up is so much funnier. She had hers freeze-dried and her midwife did a myriad of wonderful things with it. Sadly I think mine ended up in the Hospital trash can (at least I hope that's what they did with it...)

  12. That recipe sounds really gross! I'll make sure to pass on the brownies if I ever get the chance to show up to another play date!
    Do you hate all dried fruits or just raisins? I love love love pastelon, but it has raisins in it. I was imagining how to make it Josie-friendly. I need intel.
    I will make some sugar-free (and also bean-free)treats that I eat the entire pan of in 1 sitting.

    1. Rach, I hate ALL dried fruits. It's a taste AND texture thing. Christmas cake and figgy pud are the worst! I'm curious about this yummy sugar-free dessert pan you can devour in one sitting.... Bring it on!!!!

  13. Ha! This was too funny! Tequila tastes like vomit, doesnt it? And "the first time I put a...." hahahahhah!!

  14. Holy hell those brownies sound disgusting. *shudder* (for real, shudder, I have mouth issues or's true...I got all wattery-mouthed just reading this). Lucky for me your humor and awesomeness got me through the sunders and I didn't actually have to run to the sink or anything.
    And no offense, but I've been to England and the best food I had there was the curry. Which was awesome.
    As are you. Glad we found each other via Stephanie!

  15. Oh! Josie that was hilarious! Couldn't stop laughing or making faces of disgust as I was reading and hubby noticed me! LOL! Always fun reading your posts. But I'm also stopping by to let you know that you have been nominated for 2 (yes 2!) awards! Congratulations! Stop by at to find out more about it!