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Old 03-10-2008, 10:32 PM   #1
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Subtle insults to your cooking

I make an elaborate meal. I put so much time and effort into it, only to get compliments on how good the bacon is or how the biscuits out of a tube taste so great.

Tonight my beef stroganoff (made from scratch) was compared to a powdered package version of beef stroganoff (powder+water+sour cream+beef = schlock)

I'm happy getting suggestions on how to improve a meal but I find these comments a little offensive.
Does anyone else get those kind of subtle insults?
I probably read to much into it but it's something I've been thinking about lately and wanted to hear thoughts from all of you.


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Old 03-10-2008, 10:39 PM   #2
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I made Greek meatballs one time - my EX BIL asked if anyone knew any swamps that needed to be drained But that wasn't so subtle! LOL They were so dry we couldn't even eat them!

So, did this person like your beef stroganoff? Maybe the boxed version is remembered as real comfort food and yours was also VERY good?


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Old 03-10-2008, 10:39 PM   #3
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I get much worse insults on the concotions from the kitchen I've produced. I don't think they're meant to be offensive. People are telling you what they like that you've made and giving you tips on perhaps what to improve upon.
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Old 03-10-2008, 11:21 PM   #4
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As a chef in a 1/2 and 1/2 country club I went out every night and ask how was your dinner. Activley asking if they liked it or not and how would you like it changed?? and so on. I was better enabled to cook to there taste and comfort level. I stayed there for 6 years 1/2 &1/2 half Jewish and half Goyem
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Old 03-10-2008, 11:30 PM   #5
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Is it possible they don't have any other perspective than the packaged foods they're comparing it to? Only you know that answer, but I hope it's their limited scope and not an intention to hurt your feelings. Is this person a better cook than you are?

Sometimes you gotta consider the source or just come right out and ask them if you misunderstood. I can be pretty direct if need be, which is uncomfortable for some but not as uncomfortable as feeling the way you are feeling right now.

I would love to try your beef stroganoff!
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Old 03-11-2008, 12:44 AM   #6
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I'm really sorry, corazon. It's obvious how much love you put into preparing meals so the comments must really hurt. Is this a family member or a friend? If it's a friend, maybe they were subconsciously a little jealous because your dish was awesome? Or because they don't invest that much time in making the same dish and they were being defensive? In any case, you filled their plates with a lot of love and that is wonderful!
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Old 03-11-2008, 04:35 AM   #7
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Your story reminds me of eating spaghetti at home as a kid. On spaghetti days, my mom used to start the sauce effort around mid-day, and simmer it, with constant stirring, until suppertime.

One meal time, I noticed that the sauce tasted a little different and thought Mother had just adjusted the seasoning. My dad, though, all but flipped over the meal and made some remark that we should have spaghetti more often. Mother just smiled, nodded, and moved on.

Later, I found out that Mother had had a coupon for a free jar of store-bought sauce, and used it. We never had home-made sauce again.

I have found that the more effort I put into a meal, the less likelyhood there is that everyone will like it. The meal's reviewers include my "meat & taters" wife and two elementary school boys.

New flavors are just about always a bust. I once tried adding something other than salt, pepper, butter, and milk to the mashed taters, and was all but booed off the stage.

So, when I decide to try something new, or something with flavor, I always make sure that everyone has a favorite side dish with which to fill up on when the dish of effort does its lead balloon imitation. Everyone is, however, required to try a bite of the flavor de jour.

Curious fellow
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Old 03-11-2008, 07:05 AM   #8
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This is a glass half full or glass half empty situation. You could either look at it like they are insulting you by comparing your cooking to lousy (by your standards) food, or you could look at it like they are comparing it to food that they enjoy. Go with the latter.
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Old 03-11-2008, 08:26 AM   #9
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If all they can do is compare it to a boxed dish, don't be insulted. Feel sympathy for them. The box is all they know so it becomes the frame of reference.

Often, people decide something is really good based on how much it tastes like what their moms made. Until you know how good the original was, you can't tell if they are saying it's great or awful.

I'd guess your stroganoff was excellent. I know the box stuff is not. (Don't ask me how I know)
"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
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Old 03-11-2008, 08:37 AM   #10
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I hear ya Corazon, when I make a good dinner (to me), and DH when asked says -Not bad ! Lol, but when something isn't that great, its ok. Guess I just want them to love all my meals - without negative feed back.

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