Thursday, August 28, 2008

jalapeno burn

A piece of advice: always wear rubber gloves when handling jalapenos.

I learned that the hard way. My chicken taco recipe turned out fabulous, though. Can't say the same for mom's reheated Mexican rice-turned-soup. Rice can only be refrigerated a few days, I found out. And when it is good, it's best to add water a little at a time so you can keep adding more to achieve the perfect level of moisture. If not, you have soup. Like me!

Anyway, I chopped some onions and scallions and minced some garlic. But I didn't really know what to think of the jalapeno. I guess I approached it like a green bell pepper. I quartered it lengthwise and pulled out the seeds with my bare fingers. The pulp went in my good ole GB.

As I cooked the chicken and steamed my corn tortillas, I noticed my eyelid started to heat up. It felt like my eyelid was heating rapidly, so I covered it with a cool damp towel and had no idea what could possibly be happening to me.

It was jalapeno burn. My fingers turned red and swollen as I served my husband a bit later, so we researched remedies a bit later. He suggested sour cream since it's a base, but didn't appreciate my impulse to dunk my fingers in our 3/4ths-full container. That worked for minutes, as did peroxide and aloe vera. (the website we found recommended milk -- JT is a genius!)

Moral of the story: always wear gloves and don't touch your face or skin when working with jalapenos. (Funny thing is: we couldn't even taste them in our meal!) You can find my chicken taco recipe here. JT says it's one of his favorite things I've made. Just take my advice about the jalapenos. I'm telling ya! And make sure you don't burn your oil when you turn the pan on high like I did! I scrubbed at my pan for 20 minutes before resorting to a degreasing agent.

* * *

The excitement of the evening continued when JT discovered a small mouse in our kitchen. He set an animal-friendly trap out and has already caught the little guy. So our mouse friend is safely freed about a mile away, but there are several stray cats and skunks between him and our house to deter him from returning.

This weekend promises to be fun and exciting. We went on a date tonight to kick off Birthday Weekend the right way. There is nothing like hole-in-the-wall Italian chicken, red wine, and spumoni to lift the spirits. If you're ever in Tulsa, try Mary's Italian Trattoria on Cherry Street. Look in the coloring books for a picture with my name on it, too.

Saturday, we're working at the church and keeping tabs on college football kickoff. For the record, I bleed burnt orange all the way! I've been looking forward to this day for oh so long. Sadly, both JT and my favorite teams will not air on TV. That's what happens when a big school plays a small school. The spanking breaks at least a couple of amendments so they don't make it public.

Sunday is the big day, so I'm sure we'll be doing something with my family. Monday I have a brunch date of my friend Type A's apartment. I volunteered to bring muffins, so I'm planning to make six blueberry and six banana muffins. I'm so excited to bake it's not even funny.

I'm telling you. It's the little things in life that make the world go 'round!

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