To be fair, the title of this post is a bit of a misnomer because I did not do anything wrong/idiotic/un-chef-like – unlike the vast majority of my culinary catastrophes. (See Chocolate Explosion, Bloody Birthday Cake or (Un)Domestic Goddess before replying, “Oh, I’m sure you’re not that bad.” Yeah. Didn’t think so.)
The muppets were rapidly approaching their midday meltdown – HUNGRY HUNGRY HIPPOS – so I scooped them up, strapped them into their high chairs and went about cutting up lunch for my salivating almost-toddlers. Now that the muppets are big growing boys, they require a significant amount of big grown up food, without the benefit of big grown up teeth. So mealtime involves a lot of boiling, mashing and cutting delectables into teeny-tiny pieces, which will be promptly shoveled with two hands and flung toward Destroy’s general masticular area (delicacy is not yet our strong suit).
The muppets were busy banging on their high chair trays in anticipation of whatever cuisine I could come up with (excepting strawberries – Search spent all of lunch spitting those out yesterday). I was examining delightfully delicious summertime avocados, squishing them in an attempt to determine which one was ripest so as to not stab myself when cutting it. (Priorities, people.) The muppets squealed at me from their seats, encouraging me to hurry the heck up.
(I have learned to decipher muppet-speak in these past 13 months. So lest you think I am merely being dramatic, I assure you the muppets squeals did not directly translate to “hurry the heck up.” However, this being a family blog, I shan’t post what I believe to be a more literal translation.)
Just when I thought I’d found this afternoon’s winner, I noticed my hand was covered in a sticky brown goo. Being a mom, anything involving the phrase “sticky brown goo” no longer elicits anything more emphatic than an eye roll, but I investigated further in case I was all too right in my selection of the “ripest” avocado (read: rotten).
Nope. The avocado was still a pleasantly deep dark green hue and the sticky brown goo wiped right off its skin. I peered into the fruit bowl, containing kiwi, bananas, and sweet potatoes, as well as the aforementioned ripening avocados.
I heard a hiss. Suspicious, I looked closer. One of the sweet potatoes bubbled at me.
I picked it up. (Rookie mistake.)
The bubbling became increasingly furious. The hissing grew louder. Sticky brown goo oozed forth from both ends. Suddenly, as though a natural disaster had torn its foundations asunder, the yam burst open.
I was covered in gooey, mashed, orange, exploded sweet potato. With one final hiss, the dying potato spit at me for one last spiteful humiliation and withered away its dying breath in my hands.
The muppets were hysterical. Half starvation screams, “FEED ME WOMAN!” Half gut-wrenching laughter, “Mommy is covered in exploding orange goo! This is the ultimate in baby humor!” There was also one rather unfortunate interruption involving the need for a diaper change, which (even more unfortunately) rivaled the color and texture of our former friend, the sweet potato, in its post-mortem glory.
I am not entirely proud of what I did next. I toweled off and immediately boiled his friend, and sole remaining potato. Guess what we’re having for dinner?
Consider this a public service announcement.