Monday, September 17, 2007

And on the lighter side...

I set fire to my kitchen tonight.

Well, okay, maybe not exactly set fire to it, but I did a damn fine job of almost setting it on fire.

Husband's home. Whole family's back together again. I've got two new contracts for two books freshly inked and sitting in my office, I'm moving into my dream house in 30 days (not that I'm counting) so what do I do?

I decide I'm going to cook a real meal for the first time in almost a month.

Now, I love to cook and I'm fairly good at it. I went grocery shopping, stocked up on things that had fallen by the wayside (fresh veggies, anyone?), come home and now I'm going to cook dinner.

Flank steak.


I buy most of my spices from this outfit called Penzey's and, trust me, they have the absolute best spices and spice blends ever. Check it out for yourself here . You won't be sorry.

Anyhoo, I'd put the Chicago Steak Seasoning on the meat - it's delicious and smoky, great for broiling, which is what I was going to do.

So, I put the meat in to broil, chop up broccoli, mushrooms, and sweet peppers for a stir fry, get the box of couscous to go along with it. You know, the basics.

Well, then the smoke alarm at the top of the basement steps starts going off. It always goes off. I hate it. So, I yank open the basement door and fan a dishtowel like a madwoman, yelling, "There's no fire."


I turn around to see smoke pouring out of the oven vents. I drop the towel, run to the oven and open it.

My flank steak's on fire. My freakin' flank steak is now a freakin' flaming flank steak.

Well, back in my pre-kid life, I worked for a company that was huge on fire safety. Every October, they held fire drills out in a field on site where the fire department would set fires and we'd practice using these big-ass extinguishers to put out said fires.

I dove into the closet and grabbed our little tiny fire extinguisher. Pull the plug and remember PASS (Point, Aim, Spray, Sweep) - and let fly.


do you have any idea how much powder comes out of one of those things?

Everything was covered in this horrible smelling, (even worse tasting) green powder. Fire's out, but now there's green dust everywhere. The hamster's looking up at me, (yes, I now have a hamster living in my kitchen. When we move, and my daughter has her own room, Princess the hamster will go up there. For now, it's the only safe place, as my two year old can't quite reach her yet) and her cage is coated with green dust. Fortunately, it's all non-toxic. It took me two hours to clean the kitchen and wash green off everything.

Kids ended up with chicken nuggets for dinner. I had a roast beef sandwich. Not quite what I'd had in mind earlier in the day. Of course, my husband says, "Well, you didn't panic, and that's good, but you probably could've taken the broiler pan out and thrown it all in the sink." Yes, I probably could have, but with the way the last few weeks have gone, I'd probably have ended up really torching the kitchen.

Well, it's over now and everything's clean and green-dust free. My oven and broiler seem to have survived, so all is well.

And to Matt Reilly, the safety director who coordinated all of those fire extinguisher training courses - thank you, wherever you are. =)


burgy61 said...

As a veteran voluntary fireman I'm glad you choose to use the extinguisher. I have been to fires where the people have tries to throw it into the sink. Only to have it miss or it was hotter then they expected and they drop it and burn the house down. Or hot flaming grease can fly of as you move it through the air, hit you or a loved one, you did the right thing.

When you go to move you'll find green dust, the powder is so fine it gets into everything.

And don't forget to either pick-up a new one or get the old one refilled. I recommend nothing smaller the a five pounder for home kitchens.

Kim said...

I'll remember that - about the dust and the new extinguisher. It's funny because it's the first fire I've ever faced outside of the training class and I left the work force seven years ago. Still, it was my first reaction, so I guess that training paid off.

Oh, you aren't kidding about the dust - I found it on the kitchen table behind me, on the fridge (about five-six feet to the right of the oven.) I'll probably find it in the basement. That stuff really flew! =)

Nita said...

At least you're a good cook. My family sometimes thinks a fire would improve my cooking :). Glad you got the fire out and everything turned out ok. More glad your husband is home where he belongs.

Kim said...

It's been an eventful few weeks, that's for sure! =)