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Sunday, November 13, 2011

Homemade potato soup -- or how I almost burned the house down

Occasionally, I get to feeling domestic. I make menus and go grocery shopping based on those menus and do things like plan to cook from scratch. When. Will. I. Learn?

Tonight's dinner plan called for homemade potato soup.

As I scanned the recipe, I noted that it called for bacon. Originally, I planned to use that pre-cooked bacon. But all the reviews talked about how the bacon fat imparted such great flavor to the soup.

I must remember reviews on recipe sites are typically written by people who can cook. And I cannot cook.

Blindly optimistic, I bought the real bacon. Fast forward to 4:15pm today. I put the bacon in a pan and turned the burner on high. I stirred it a bit and then put a lid on the pan so the grease wouldn't splatter. While the bacon was cooking, I turned to chop the onion, which would be sauteed in the bacon fat.

But when I lifted the lid of the pan to toss the onion in, flames shot about 2 feet into the air, licking the microwave. Expletive, expletive, expletive.

I had enough presence of mind not to put water on a grease fire. So I reached for the lid, which I'd dropped when the flames appeared, and attempted to put it on the burning pan. I got it sort of on the pan, but not all the way. I grabbed a dish towel and tried to put the lid on the pan. Instead of suffocating the flames, the lid slid all the way off, the flames reached higher and I made a run for it with the pan.

We're having some construction done on the back porch and the back door is blocked (a situation which will be remedied ASAP), so there I was, holding onto a dishtowel-wrapped pan handle, flames shooting out, running for the front door, screaming for someone to open it. Just as Annie opened the door, I could feel the fire on my thumb and pointer finger and my feet flew out from underneath me.

The flaming pan went flying out the door (thankfully!) and I landed on my arse. Unfortunately, the pan landed on the landscaping where the dry leaves are collected. So now the kitchen was not in danger of going up in flames, but the landscaping and front porch was. 

PhotobucketAnnie and I ran with bowls of water to put it out, screaming over the insistent chirping of the smoke alarms (yep, they work!). I finally came enough to my senses to turn on the hose and drag it to the mostly smoky leaves.

PhotobucketSo here we are, 90 minutes later. My hand hurts like a son-of-a-gun (waiting for the 800mg of ibuprofen to kick in). We have no dinner. The house smells like burnt bacon. The microwave has a smoky gray film on it.

And I'm sending Mike out to buy a fire extinguisher. I would tell him to buy a new pan, too, but I'm not allowed in the kitchen anymore.


Ami said...

Oh my goodness! I'm glad you are okay! I can give you a super easy homemade potato soup recipe that does not involve bacon. (Except as a suggested garnish...)

Missy Wheeler said...

Oh my goodness. I hope your hand heals quickly. My husband and I should come cook for your family. We love cooking & are pretty decent at it.

Janet @ KY Klips said...

I attempted bacon on the stove myself recently and ended up with grease everywhere and two burns spots from grease splatters on my arm. Thanksful my ordeal was not as bad as yours. Glad that you are going to be ok and the kitchen is still mostly intact. Fire extinguishers are good, but never seem to be present or functional when needed. Microwave bacon trays are wonderful inventions. Or maybe, O'Charley's for Potato Soup and hot buttered rolls is better for Domestic Goddesses like us ;)

lynnhouse said...

OMG, Amy. I'm glad you are okay. I had to postpone my trip once to the next day over a burn I got from a 1000 degree kiln at Herron. Nearly made me sick to my stomach. I'm glad you, the house and the yard are okay. Geesh!

Erica Saint said...

Oh my, that is scary! I am glad you are fine! I have learned through the years that low and slow is the best way to cook. It takes a little longer, but diasters rarely happen.!

Rebecca said...

OK. So you managed to find the ONE loophole in the "Everything's better with bacon" argument. :)

Glad all ended well (considering) and I hope that ibuprofen kicks in soon! Don't feel defeated -- I have never posted the backstory to Sam's basketball birthday cake earlier this year, in which the inside of my oven looked like someone took a huge poop in it. (It was chocolate cake batter that rose above the sides of the pan and collected/burnt in the bottom of the oven.)

Beth said...

Please forgive me for laughing. Thought would it make you feel better if I told you this sounds like something that would happen to me?

Unknown said...

Ahhhh yes- Been there done that! LOL Glad you are OK......I hope your burn heals quickly! Sending hugs to you from Iowa!

Ellen aka Ellie said...

Gee, all I burned this weekend was microwave popcorn.

Hope your burn doesn't hurt as much today or didn't interfere with your sleep last night. Ow!

Anonymous said...

Yowzers. Glad to hear that you got everything under control before things got out of hand.

Momza said...

Yikes. First, I'm glad you're okay!
Second, cook on a lower heat when you're multi-tasking as a beginner is a good idea. Next time, use the boxed bacon. lol

Stacy said...

I'm glad everything turned out (mostly) okay. I have totally done that before. The bacon on fire thing. Not the flaming pan through the house thing.

Just to let you time, dump salt on it. Salt will put out a grease fire in a pan.

Sharon said...

I couldn't help but laugh with the pictures. I'm sorry it was such an ordeal, though! I HATE cooking bacon. The grease drives me crazy and I don't cook it well. It's my husband's thing to cook, and he uses the griddle. I give you credit for attempting!

CWMartin said...

And THAT'S why you should regularly review that family evac plan!

kimybeee said...

i actually had to clasp my hand over my mouth i was laughing so hard at the mental image of you running through the house with a flaming pan, annie opening the door and you going flying and setting the landscaping on fire. you are the only person that could burn down a house from the outside in from a grease fire!!!! you would be famous at the fire dept!!! they love people like you...glad everything is okay!