Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Kiss the Cook? Just try it.

Dear Helen Hartman,
Do you really not cook? How does your family get fed?
        Love to know how you get away with that!

Dear Loved One,
   How does my family get fed? The same way Helen's family gets everything from her -
 When she darn well feels like it and without giving her any back talk.

Kidding. Helen is just kidding. If you met my family you'd know that. They don't go long between meals or mouthing off.

Actually Helen has been feeling a bit bad about having gone all salmon banana on y'all so to make amends she went to her mystical source of magical concoctions...
No, not the liquor cabinet - the bookshelf! That's where Helen grabbed something she thought might help.

First, the title is a lie. EVERY mood? Helen checked it against just the ones swinging through here while she wrote this post.

This hung in my Mom's kitchen forever - we used to have great fun moving the dial around. Helen's kids would not DARE try keeping track of her mood changes - it would be a full time job!
I checked the book to see what fit the mood of the moment.

Not in there.
Pack your bags in hop in the car, Cousin Pat, we're driving until we find a place where they think older women are fabulous and our credit rating hasn't caught up to us yet?

 Not mentioned once.
Helen asks you, is THIS a mood? 

Okay, I'll concede that a man in the kitchen might put him or you in a mood but here's one of the actual recipes from that section:

By now you've guessed the whole book is not about cooking for any mood - or cooking at all. It's about selling Mogen David wine. It's canned soup and wine and wine without canned soup. Nothing I'd really file away here:

So what's the moody cook to do?  What? Your family can't open a box?

My favorite cereal from childhood - found at Target recently! The fact that it was a special deal and gone now has Helen in a rotten mood, for sure.
And perfect for participating in Alphabet Thursday's Letter Q!!!
But if you are lucky enough to have a son who works at a health food store - you might get some locally grown fruits and veggies.

One day a week, I throw together whatever my son brings home, roasting slowly with garlic and olive oil to make my own ratty ratatouille -yum.

Cooking doesn't have to be fancy of full of wine to be good, though Helen has noticed there are less complaints when the guests are full of wine instead.


and Rednesday at It's a Very Cherry World


  1. That mood board is fabulous! Your ratatouille looks delish!

  2. I LOVE that mood barometer. My family wouldn't be able to keep up with changing the gauge either. Quisp! I haven't thought about that in years, I think Target will have to bring it back by popular demand.

  3. I'm loving that mood board and i'm salivating over that delicious ratatouille...yummy! x

  4. Quisp. Funny how we forget things, then remember when we see them again! I remember that brand when I was younger than I am today lol.

  5. I hadn't thought about Quisp in years either. I was always a Cocoa Krispies girl...and still am, even all these years later. I'd like to say my tastes have become more refined and sophisticated, but everyone who knows me would laugh. (My taste in wine is just a step or two above the Boone's Farm of my youth.)

  6. Dana - Annie Green Springs, here. I tell ya the Quisp was a flood of fond flavor.

    Thanks y'all... it always puzzled me that the mood barometer's moods were sorta negative accept for loving and tender and affectionate, which are basically all the same. Didn't give women much depth, huh?

  7. Cool post, that Quisp brings back memories.

  8. Quisp... OMG forgot all about that! Kinda glad though:@)

  9. Delightful! (Or maybe it was all that wine I drank while reading your post!)


    Come in, my dear friends, and be seated, please—
    Oh, all of you reds are such a big tease!
    Scarlet, you creep over cheeks in a blush;
    Crimson, you’re always in such a big rush!
    Cherry, you’re tasty and pleasant to see;
    Carmine, you utterly satisfy me!
    So come in, my friends, and be seated, please—
    Of all the colors, I’d rather have these!

    © 2011 by Magical Mystical Teacher

    Little Red Shopping Bag

  10. Dear Helen Hartman,
    I agree with you that all Helen's are cute, clever and heaven sent. I am so excited to meet you and of course followed you home to visit with you and your friends, it is so nice to meet you and I look forward to seeing you soon!
    Miz Helen

  11. I was asked by a church group to provide them with a recipe for their cook book. They specifically asked "what's your favorite thing to make for dinner?" Well, that one was a no-brainer--reservations! They actually printed that, WITH my name!!!

  12. such a fun post. the kitchen is the best place in the house.

  13. Judie - what a hoot. It's sound advice, though.

    Sea witch - my kitchen and great room is, well, one big room.

  14. This is a really cute post!!! Full of fun!

  15. I have not come across Quisp. Maybe they call it by a different name over here (Malaysia). That ratatouille looks yummy!!

  16. If I had your mom's mood dial it would have to have a motor installed to spin it constantly!

    Does anyone look like the hostess in the first photo by the time the quests arrive?

  17. LOL, Mom Walds. My mother actually did look all dolled up for parties... she actually had 'hostess wear'.
    Thanks y'all for stopping by.

  18. I love the mood finder! My guys wouldn't want to set it either.

  19. What a fun post/blog! I love your character and the retro vibe. Vintage cookbooks have some weird food combos don't they? I love looking at them but would be afraid to actually make some of those thingss! Thanks for visiting my blog! Jennifer Grenko

  20. I'm a firm believer in filling your guests full of wine before you serve dinner. For some reason, it always seems to taste better to them!

    I love your blog!!

  21. lol - i did love this post, flaming fruit it is then this evening in my house ;o) I also need one of those mood dials in my kitchen :o) Scarlett x

  22. Quisp is a new one on me!

    And the self-serving cookbook was funny.


  23. I don't remember exactly what Quisp tastes like. Is it similar to Cap'n Crunch?

  24. Eliza - yup Quisp is like Cap'n Crunch that doesn't shred the roof of your mouth!

  25. I have really enjoyed reading your post. I thought of my daughter's godmother. When she entered the kitchen, her face changed, and I was afraid that something terrible was about to take place. That's how much she hated cooking.

  26. No way, Target has Quisp? My sister and I used to have it for breakfast all the time. I may need to get over to Target. (Taylorsville Rd. or 60?) I wonder if it tastes as good as I remember. Okay, actually I don't remember how it tastes, but if we ate it, it must have been good.

  27. I never read your blog without laughing out loud! Love the mood barometer - that would not have worked in my childhood home!!
    Cooking is not my favorite thing either, but a glass of wine makes it a lot more enjoyable!

  28. This has definitely put me in a funny good mood! But I still don't want to cook! lol Love the wine cookbooks...I think I have a Kahlua liqueur cookbook! heehee!

  29. I'd like that mood barometer for the office!

  30. Love the mood baraometer. I know where mine would be stuck...sigh.

    This was such a clever post. I haven't heard of Quisp either!

    Thanks for the smile.


    PS. Those figurines are really quite adorable!


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