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“Frozen Sunday”

The following dialogue is not make-believe. It is real. The ensuing anecdote is also real and has not been fabricated in any way.

“This is my culture … not yours!” Door slams. Man enters room moments later.

“It’s not the end of the world, I’ll cook the meat … it’s just gonna take a little longer.”

“I wanted us to have a nice dinner just like we do every Sunday. You don’t think to prepare any meals on Sundays because I’m always the one doing it. Now we can’t have meat for dinner because it’s friggin’ frozen!”

“It’ll still be fine. The quality’s not going to suffer just cuz it’s frozen.”

“I don’t wannit anymore!”

Things had been challenging on the dinner front. For lack of a better term, I’d become the “frozen meat bastard.” I did not want this title, but it attached itself to me through my ignorant ways. Let me explain.

Every Sunday, a meat (or fish) dinner of sorts was carefully prepared by the German Dinner Queen. The meat would be thawed in the refrigerator the preceding day, which was standard protocol for the “Queen’s” cultural custom of a family Sunday dinner. I say dinner on Sunday because Das Mittagessen (lunch) is usually the main meal of the day for most people in Germany. At some point in the day beforehand, the “frozen meat bastard” would throw a monkey wrench into the entire experience.

One time, it was the botched grilling episode. I tried, tried, and tried—with the aid of a small hairdryer—to breathe life into a struggling flame on a flimsy, prehistoric twenty-euro grill, but the frying skillet won by popular vote after the flame crapped out. And another time, it was a collectively bad choice to have dinner at a restaurant that we already knew was well below our taste bud standards.

This time was no exception, either.

We had all the elements ready for our Sunday sit-down: sauces, spices, potatoes, vegetables, and of course, meat. While shopping for these items at the supermarket the day before, I noticed an American food section consisting of about four large boxes of pretzels, a couple of jars of mayonnaise, some muffin batter, and some packets of salad dressing. This not-so-clever marketing strategy employed by a German food manufacturer fooled nobody, except Kathleen, who exclaimed, “Ooh, look!” She sometimes tries to placate me with enthusiastic calls to action—e.g., “Hey, look at these yummy [dried] bread sticks”—but I rarely fall for that baloney. Right after her futile food exclamation, I grabbed one of the cheap looking bottles of mayo and turned it on its side to reveal the German manufacturer's location and uncanny resemblance to a German bottle of mayonnaise. Next.

After shopping on a Saturday, it was usually made clear to me that the meat needed to go in the refrigerator for the following day’s meal. The unspoken rule was that frozen meat on Sunday meal day is equivalent to the apocalypse. Now, due to my exceptional listening skills and the fact that I detest unspoken rules, I went ahead and threw the meat in the freezer where it belonged. Fast forward to early afternoon the next day and it was still there.

By this time, we were out for a walk and had accidentally stumbled upon a typical German beer garden tucked away in a remote section of the city. Interested in what all the fuss was about, I asked Kathleen if she wanted to check it out.

“Okay, babe, but only for a little bit. I wanna get home later so I can start preparing dinner.”

Wish granted. Ordering a lowly regional drink instead of a manly German beer at the new-found establishment proved to be a lamentable decision, as my mood was drastically altered on the first sip.

“Yeah, I’m a little tired too,” Kathleen said after I irascibly suggested we vamoose.

“I think I need a nap when we get back,” I later mumbled.

Sure, I was tired all right, especially after all the walking, but being bamboozled by the state beverage Apfelwein was probably the real reason I had such low energy. Nevertheless, when we got back to our apartment, I was on our beloved couch and fast asleep in no time, with drool evidently pouring out of my mouth at record levels. My slobbery nap would come to an abrupt halt, however, since the German Dinner Queen had some words for me. And it wasn’t a sweet whisper in my ear, either, if that’s what you’re thinking. That’s right. She found the frozen meat. And there was gonna to be hell to pay.

All I can remember is lying on my side, still half-groggy, and getting a full range of negative emotions hurled in my direction as I tried to deflect them like a goalie in a female hormones game. Nothing I said seemed to work. Of course I even reached for my always-stellar situational logic and rationale:

“The quality’s the same between thawed meats and frozen meats ... when cooked by the same method.” Whatever. I was having a ridiculous frozen meat discussion with a woman. There was no way I could win.

When the dust from the verbal attack finally cleared, an enormous sense of guilt came over me. If only there was something I could do to make things better. Why not surprise her and cook the meat was what my warm-hearted side was saying. The poor thing was in the bedroom sulking. It’s the least I could to do to remedy the situation. So I popped right up off the couch, tiptoed over to the freezer, and took out the meat, quietly placing it on the counter. But when I looked down at it—basking in front of me in all its glory—my Widerwille (unwillingness) suddenly kicked in.

“She knew I had done the same thing two weeks prior. Besides, she didn’t even check to see if the meat was in the refrigerator in the first place,” I rationalized.

Clack! Right back in the freezer it went.

After all, what else would you expect from “the frozen meat bastard”?

Comments

The following dialogue is not make-believe. It is real. The ensuing anecdote is also real and has not been fabricated in any way.
:lol:
With an intro like this, I was almost sure you'd be telling us an experience of eating raw beef in Germany. If you ever did, I have to know about it. I couldn't do it.:xeyes:

I've never been much of a meat eater (except the McDonald's hamburger faze). So, I would never taste the difference between meat that has been frozen or not, but I had a friend who was a fanatic about it. At restaurants, he would ask to make sure the meat had never been frozen, oh, but one time they said no, and he knew it was a lie.😯
 
Well, I also cooked a huge Sunday lunch/dinner at one time. Prime rib, roast potatoes, Yorkshire pudding, gravy type of meal.

Just by accident I found that the meat that was still frozen ended up being juicier than its thawed cousin and for a long time after that, it's exactly how our roasts were cooked.

There is something very special about having a Sunday joint (my English mother) and the entire family present. Now my husband has to have thawed meat...why? He's even English, but his mother always thawed her meat.

It has been a long time since we've had that tradition and I rather miss it....not just the curry that followed a day or two later, but just the family gathering around. Even people who dropped by....there's always plenty for others.

True, you can't use a frozen chicken...at least easily, but a roast is just fine. Plus the bonus of that smell.....! Happy eating. Yours, Lenora.
 
:lol:
With an intro like this, I was almost sure you'd be telling us an experience of eating raw beef in Germany. If you ever did, I have to know about it. I couldn't do it.:xeyes:

I've never been much of a meat eater (except the McDonald's hamburger faze). So, I would never taste the difference between meat that has been frozen or not, but I had a friend who was a fanatic about it. At restaurants, he would ask to make sure the meat had never been frozen, oh, but one time they said no, and he knew it was a lie.😯

I did in fact eat raw beef in Germany. Called Hackepeter. My father-in-law served it to me with a big smile at dinner at my in-laws’ one evening, and because he introduced it as Hackepeter, raw beef mixed with diced onions and seasoning, I thought nothing of it, putting spread after spread of it on my German bread and devouring it like it was nobody’s business. It was only afterwards when I later found out what it was that I wanted to take a flamethrower to my insides.
 
Well, I also cooked a huge Sunday lunch/dinner at one time. Prime rib, roast potatoes, Yorkshire pudding, gravy type of meal.

Just by accident I found that the meat that was still frozen ended up being juicier than its thawed cousin and for a long time after that, it's exactly how our roasts were cooked.

There is something very special about having a Sunday joint (my English mother) and the entire family present. Now my husband has to have thawed meat...why? He's even English, but his mother always thawed her meat.

It has been a long time since we've had that tradition and I rather miss it....not just the curry that followed a day or two later, but just the family gathering around. Even people who dropped by....there's always plenty for others.

True, you can't use a frozen chicken...at least easily, but a roast is just fine. Plus the bonus of that smell.....! Happy eating. Yours, Lenora.

Good point! A nice roast leaves the house smelling delightful for hours. I miss my mother’s roasts.
 
Hi @Cloudyskies.....There is a dish known as Steak Tartare, often served with a raw egg on top, that I've seen people eat. (French version)

In my case it's not the raw ground beef (very high quality) but the raw egg that I couldn't force down. I love sushi, for example, but wouldn't eat it with the problems I have.

I'm sure your father-in-law served you high quality, really fresh beef. I gather you don't like your steaks rare, do you? Yours, Lenora
 
Hi @Cloudyskies.....There is a dish known as Steak Tartare, often served with a raw egg on top, that I've seen people eat. (French version)

In my case it's not the raw ground beef (very high quality) but the raw egg that I couldn't force down. I love sushi, for example, but wouldn't eat it with the problems I have.

I'm sure your father-in-law served you high quality, really fresh beef. I gather you don't like your steaks rare, do you? Yours, Lenora
He did, Lenora. I do know steak tartare. You’re right, though, I like my steaks well-done. And boy do I love sushi too.
 
I did in fact eat raw beef in Germany. Called Hackepeter. My father-in-law served it to me with a big smile
It was only afterwards when I later found out what it was that I wanted to take a flamethrower to my insides.
Oh nooooooo, no, no no! That's terrible! I can't blame you for wanting a flamethrower! Your father-in-law's smile was a clue, I suppose.:lol:

There is a dish known as Steak Tartare, often served with a raw egg on top, that I've seen people eat. (French version)
This is the dish I was thinking of. I worked with a German guy who mentioned it, and I just could not believe that someone would eat raw hamburger.
No raw eggs or raw hamburger for me, thank you.:lol:
 

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