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Old 11-18-2010, 01:02 PM   #1
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Family Food Jokes!

Janet H. mentioned a family joke about a Cornish Game Hen in her Thanksgiving menu and got me thinking about Food Jokes that continue over the years.

In my family, I am the only one who ENJOYS cooking. The others cook because they have to. However, with the exception of my younger sister, everyone uses fresh foods. My sister, Kay, is the MASTER of boxed and canned foods.

My Mom went to visit her and Kay had gone grocery shopping, picking up all kinds of boxed and canned meals. She was proud of her selections and then expected Mom to cook while she was there. Needless to say, Mom said she didn't feel well during her stay because of all the processed foods and being expected to cook on her vacation.

So, when Mom came to visit me, I bought her a special meal for her to fix for herself. Her plane arrived late and I pointed her into the kitchen where I had left out her dinner. It was a box of Cheeseburger Hamburger Helper. She started laughing and said, "I'll go hungry first!" I did get her real meal, pot roast and veggies.

This box of Hamburger Helper is about 19 years old and for fun we ship it back and forth to each other. It happened to be on the shelf during our family reunion and Kay saw it. She asked why Mom had such an old looking box of Hamburger Helper...Mom and I couldn't speak. Neither one of us wanted to hurt her feelings with the backstory!

I have custody of it now, just waiting for the right time to mail it back.
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Old 11-18-2010, 04:08 PM   #2
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The stuffed and trussed Cornish Game hen dates back decades to when I was a kid. My mom always did a big Thanksgiving meal. We had a large family and Turkeys were often huge and presented in all their stuffed and decorated glory at the table. It was very Normal Rockwell.

Then one year my mom had her arm in a sling at thanksgiving and just didn't feel up to the big production. One of my older brothers offered to do the Turkey and the pies and sides were to be brought by guests. Mom was shooed from the house for the day.

Come dinner time, the table was spread and mom arrived home just in time for dinner. She was treated as an honored guest and seated at one end of the table. The side dishes and gravy and relish trays were laid out, the wine was poured and it was time for the presentation of the BIG bird. Out of the kitchen marched my brother carrying a huge platter which he placed on the table in front of my mom. It had one tiny but perfectly stuffed Cornish game hen.... my mother was horrified. My brother thought it was hilarious.

Mom was quiet - she just sat there for a few seconds and then we watched in astonishment as she pushed back her chair and left the house. A minute later she returned, lugging a cardboard 'hot' box with a precooked store bought stuffed turkey in it. She plunked it down unceremoniously on the table muttering something about always being prepared and sat down. She instructed my brother to take it to the kitchen and plate the store bought bird as one Cornish hen would never be enough and oh by the way, what was he thinking? There were 10 or 12 of us seated still, and every one of us looking hard at the center of the table, no eye contact.

The brother took the box and returned 30 seconds later with the turkey he had cooked which was already plated. Mom knew the turkey wasn't the one she picked up but never said a word. The Turkey was carved and we had a lovely meal. No one ever let on about the series of weird events, the practical joke gone wrong or the left over turkey we ate meal after meal after meal.

The next year mom was out of her sling and at thanksgiving, she seated my brother at the head of the table and asked if he would be willing to carve. He was newly married and his wife was there for her first holiday meal with the family. He puffed up with pride at the request. The sides and relish trays were on the table, the wine was poured and the BIG platter came from the kitchen.... it had one tiny, but perfectly stuff and trussed cornish game hen. My mom placed it in front of my brother and instructed him to be fair as he portioned out the meat and to be sure to serve our 'guests' first. His wife never quite got the joke but we all laughed till our sides hurt. There are five sibs in my family and afaik, we each continue to cook a cornish hen at thanksgiving as an homage to my mom and her patient humor. Perspective is a valuable life skill.
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Old 11-18-2010, 05:22 PM   #3
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The stuffed and trussed Cornish Game hen dates back decades to when I was a kid. My mom always did a big Thanksgiving meal. We had a large family and Turkeys were often huge and presented in all their stuffed and decorated glory at the table. It was very Normal Rockwell.
Beautiful story!!! Thanks, Janet! I have tears rolling!

This belongs in a book of your family history and life experience!
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Old 11-18-2010, 05:41 PM   #4
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What a great story Janet! I could imagine myself cooking a Cornish game hen (as well as a turkey). When I brought it out, I would say that apparently I cooked it too long and it had shrunk.

Great thread Princess Fee! I didn't know about it when I posted my dinner plans, and a memory it brought back to me, in the What's for Dinner thread, so I will retell (paste, LOL) it here: When I was a teen a friend was having supper with us and my mom had made tuna noodle casserole. My dad knew that they fed their cats Tender Vittles cat food, so he teased her and told her it was Tender Vittles noodle casserole. She was so tickled! After that if my dad asked what was for supper, if it was tuna noodle casserole my mom would say it was Tender Vittles casserole.

Barbara
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Old 11-18-2010, 05:48 PM   #5
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What a great story Janet! I could imagine myself cooking a Cornish game hen (as well as a turkey). When I brought it out, I would say that apparently I cooked it too long and it had shrunk.

Great thread Princess Fee! I didn't know about it when I posted my dinner plans, and a memory it brought back to me, in the What's for Dinner thread, so I will retell (paste, LOL) it here: When I was a teen a friend was having supper with us and my mom had made tuna noodle casserole. My dad knew that they fed their cats Tender Vittles cat food, so he teased her and told her it was Tender Vittles noodle casserole. She was so tickled! After that if my dad asked what was for supper, if it was tuna noodle casserole my mom would say it was Tender Vittles casserole.

Barbara
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Old 11-18-2010, 10:24 PM   #6
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My dad's mom cooked because she had to. She could bake up a storm though. Cakes, pies, candies were heaven from her. One year, we were visiting. She had made several pies for us and had lots of food on the table. We all sat down, ate our fill and cleared the table. As she was putting up the leftovers, she noticed the oven was still on. There, in the oven was the roast beef she had made for the main course! Of course it was way over cooked by then. I forget what we did with it but it was really inedible at that point. From then on, we always would remind Grandma to check the oven before we would sit down to eat.
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Old 11-18-2010, 10:38 PM   #7
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My dad's mom cooked because she had to. She could bake up a storm though. Cakes, pies, candies were heaven from her. One year, we were visiting. She had made several pies for us and had lots of food on the table. We all sat down, ate our fill and cleared the table. As she was putting up the leftovers, she noticed the oven was still on. There, in the oven was the roast beef she had made for the main course! Of course it was way over cooked by then. I forget what we did with it but it was really inedible at that point. From then on, we always would remind Grandma to check the oven before we would sit down to eat.
Great tradition!
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Old 11-19-2010, 01:23 AM   #8
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rofl, all great stories!!!!

the only food "joke" in our house was the time we found out my next oldest sister was allergic to shrimp, or the family story of how kids can be cruel.

we had just returned from a day at the beach where my mom and dad had picked up a few pounds of shrimp. as mom prepared it for dinner, my dad and the 6 of us kids washed up and gathered around the dining room table.

a few bites into the meal, my sister diane started to feel funny from the shrimp, with her tongue tingling and swelling. she started to get scared and say "molm, dald , sumpin's wong wit my mouf".

seeing a chance to make fun of her, my next oldest sister claire and i, on each of diane's flanks, started to repeat the same thing, exaggerating her odd sounding words.

molm, mooolm, sumpin's wong wif my mouf! mooolm

our older siblings kept telling us to shut up, but diane kept getting louder so we ratcheted it up as well. finally, my dad put his foot down and told everyone to shut up, just as diane turned a few shades of purple and passed out in her shrimp.

thankfully, my dad was a medic in wwii, so he was able to keep her airway open until he got her to the emergency room.

oops.

claire and i went to bed early that night, kinda hungry.
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Old 11-19-2010, 01:36 AM   #9
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Breakfast in my boyfriends family is a HUGE deal. It's their favorite meal of the day, whereas I could take it or leave it. He has a great big extended family and one of their favorite things to share is a great breakfast. We were all upstate NY visiting the family farm and all went out for an early breakfast. My boyfriends daughter, who was 6 at the time, was adament about being "a grown up" and ordering for herself. The waitress was a great sport and made a big deal about Farah ordering for the first time for herself. The waitress went around the table collecting everyone's order and when the waitress got to Farah, she sat straight up in her seat, proudly holding the menu and exclaimed..."I will have 2 eggs made to order!" lol She has never lived that down and now just rolls her eyes if we ask her if she'd like her eggs M.T.O. lol
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Old 11-19-2010, 01:39 AM   #10
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P.S. Great thread and love all the stories!!
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