|This cholent looks delicious. |
Which makes it clear that it's not mine.
Yeah, I don't really know what cholent is, either, but the idea is that you put a lot of tasty crap into a crockpot & let it cook overnight. You're supposed to make it for Shabbos dinner, I guess, but, hey, ain't no harm in home cookin' all week long. Hey, I even found an article titled "Top Ten Reasons Why Cholent is Like Sex."
So I asked two of my favorite Orthodox ladies, Daphne & Chaviva, for their cholent secrets, & then, armed with their suggestions & a myriad online resources, Nathan & I set about creating some "Jew Stew" of our own.
- Cubed stew meat (which is beef... I guess?)
- Sweet potatoes
- A can of baked beans
- Lots o' BBQ sauce
- A half can of beer (PBR, if you must know)
- Seasoned bread crumbs
- Copious amounts of paprika
It simmered overnight, tempting me with the delicious smell & the simple fact that I couldn't open the lid because, you know, that's how crockpots work. Finally, we busted it open, & there it was, all burnt- & carmelized-looking.
You know where this is going, right? It tasted... not good. Nathan claims to like it, & we each had a bowl for dinner, but... guys, it just wasn't good. It tasted bitter & mushy, with an unsettling texture & no real flavor. It tasted like something you'd be served at an orphanage. Gruel, without the "Please, sir, I'd like some more."
I confess, I'm disappointed. I was so jazzed about my cholent, convinced it could be nothing but delicious, so upon my misfire, I'm feeling a bit like a failure of a future Jewish mother. What kind of Jewish woman am I that I screwed up a simple stew?!
Next Jewish recipe on the docket is Emily's late grandma's kugel, "a meal in itself." No one can mess up cheese & noodles, right? Right?