I know, I know, I've regaled you with heart-rending tales of my inability to eat like normal people and my incredible bravery and nobility in dealing with this challenge. But this does not prevent me from being a superb cook...I may be so immodest as to say "chef". I've frequently considered doing a cookbook but do not want to steal any thunder from Julia Childs.
As a graduate of the prestigious Cordon Puce, where I studied under famed chef Joe Smutch, owner and head chef at Joe's Diner and Transmission Repair in Sheepdip, Wyoming, I am barraged by requests for my recipes, and have decided to share two of them with you today.
The fact that I take great pride in these two gourmet dishes although I am now unable to taste them speaks, I think, for their worthiness.
So get out a pencil and paper, and let us begin.
The first is Filet du Spam avec fromage.
Take one can of USDA Prime Spam (it comes already deboned and fat trimmed). Carve into 8 equal, horizontal slices, each approximately 1/4" thick. Place one slice of Spam for each diner onto a small "boat" created of aluminum foil. While the Spam, like a fine decanted wine, is "breathing" after being sliced, take a jar of olives--salad olives or whole olives avec pimento and slice each olive into four segments, vertically so as to retain some pimento in each slice. Next, carefully place sliced olives over the surface of the Spam slice, making sure to cover the entire slice.
Open a jar of barbecue (we chefs pronounce it bar-BEEK) sauce, and pour over the olives gently so as not to wash them off the slice of Spam.
Next, take one slice of the finest American Cheese (I prefer individually wrapped slices Kraft for ease of handling, though you must be careful to remove the wrapping), fold it over carefully into two equal, rectangular halves. Since the slices are square, you may fold from any direction except diagonally, which is not advised as it leaves some of the Spam and olives uncovered. Place the folded rectangle of cheese atop the olives and bar-BEEK, making sure the cheese is parallel with the Spam, not crosswise to it. Depending on your love of bar-BEEK you may pour additional sauce over the top of the cheese.
Bake in 350 degree oven 10 minutes. Serve to the oohs, aaahs, and applause of your guests.
The second gastronomic delight--Chien Chaud avec Fromage is simplicity itself, though care must be taken at certain stages of its preparation for maximum results. The directions below are for one serving, but can be easily expanded, again, by the number of servings desired.
Take one finely-ground U.S.D.A. approved, processed meat sausage commonly if quaintly referred to in the United States as a "hot dog." Set aside one slice of choice American cheese (see above), cut into four equal strips. Slice the "hot dog" lengthwise, beginning the incision 1/2 inch from one end and extending to 1/2 inch from the other. Be careful that the knife cuts as close as possible to but not through the "bottom". Putting the knife down, grasp both ends of the sausage with thumb and index finger to force the slit open. Into the slit, place two of the cheese strips. This may prove a bit difficult without breaking the strips, but no matter. Force them in as deeply as they will go. (You may eat the other two strips.)
Make a small "boat" of aluminum foil just big enough to hold the "hot dog", and place the cheese-stuffed "hot dog" into it. Take care that it does not roll over on its side, or the next step may be next to impossible.
Pour either Teriyaki Sauce or bar-BEEK of your choice over the cheese so that it fills the remaining gap in the "hot dog" completely.
Set oven to "Broil" and place the aluminum boat into the broiler. Be very careful, again, that the "hot dog" does not fall over on its side, or the sauce will all run out and the dish will, in effect, be ruined.
Broiling times may vary, but two minutes is a good general guess. If you hear the smoke alarm going off, it may be an indication of over-cooking.
Remove from broiler (do not forget to wear protective gloves while doing so) and serve. If you are dining alone, to save dishes, you may eat directly from the aluminum "boat."
One day, if I am in a particularly beneficent mood, I may give you my award-winning recipe for Frog Legs avec Frog. Until then...Bon Appetit!
Dorien's blogs are posted by 10 a.m. Central time every Monday and Thursday. Please take a moment to visit his website (http://www.doriengrey.com) and, if you enjoy these blogs, you might want to check out Short Circuits: a Life in Blogs (http://bit.ly/m8CSO1), which is also available as an audiobook (http://www.audible.com/pd/ref=sr_1_1?asin=B00DJAJYCS&qid=1372629062&sr=1-1).