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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Seafood Garden


Q: What do small shrimp make?
A: Microwaves!

Once upon a time, the small shrimp which give this dish its tenuous connection to seafood, swam free in the vast ocean among their crustacean brethren enjoying a life free from stress and fear. They were ignorant of the non-aquatic life, and of the strange creatures who reside upon the land who rely on microwave ovens to cook their food.

In particular, they were completely unaware of what the folks at Ideals Publishing in Nashville, TN had in store for them. This is just as well, because they might have tried to escape the trawling net that inevitably captured them and the swift death that followed. Thankfully, while their souls were swept up (or down?) to fishy heaven, their bodies continued to play a valuable role in the food chain; once flash frozen and canned, and then shipped to a supermarket, they were purchased by Cyndee Kannenberg (or one of her associates) so she could demonstrate for us this recipe.

What remained of those dear, innocent shrimp were condemned to float among the congealed depths of a pool of cream of shrimp soup and cream cheese. Perhaps the asparagus reminds them of seaweed. 

Notice how this dish is presented with an offering of fresh flowers: are they a bribe for the diner or a reward? Or are they a bouquet some grief-stricken marine-lover has left upon their jellified grave?

Guide To Microwave Cooking, Ideals Publishing, Nashville TN, 1978

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