Sunday, June 24, 2012

i know better than to cook

when we moved into our apartment we were having some issues with the garbage disposal. sometimes it would work great and other times it would shake the whole sink and counter so badly it would shut the water off. finally one day i took out the rubber piece in the drain and saw some plastic in there. weird. i took it out and it was some really thick industrial type plastic. i have no idea where it came from and thought i better alert the manager. i talked to the maintenance guy and he told me it was a brand new "very expensive" disposal and i shouldn't put plastic in it. duh. i said, i didn't, i thought maybe the previous tenants did. he said, it was installed since then, "what did someone come in and put plastic down it before you moved in?" yeah, jerk. my theory is, when they installed it, it had some plastic pieces that were supposed to be taken out and weren't. in any case it was working regularly now.

that brings us to yesterday afternoon. we were invited to my brother-in-law and sister-in-law's place for bbq and i wanted to bring something. i remembered a friend at the audubon society had made a delicious fingerling potato salad for one of our events, so i decided to try that. one of the ingredients was lemon juice so i bought a lemon and was squeezing the juice into a little liquid measurer that my mom had gotten me. it's basically a shot glass with measurements on it. i finished with it, put it in the sink and went about preparing the rest of the ingredients. i steamed the potatoes in the pasta boat my mother-in-law got me and when i took the potatoes out, i put the boat in the sink and filled it with hot soapy water. i washed everything and had some lemon peels that i wanted to put down the disposal to make it smell nice. the sink was still full of suds so i dropped a peel down where the drain was and started the disposal. oh. my. God. the noise was awful! in my stressed haste i inadvertently turned of the water instead of the disposal, of course, so it ran even longer, oops. i stopped it and took the rubber piece out of the drain (which doesn't fit all that well and has a very large opening for things to slip through into the disposal) and saw what looked like ice. i didn't remember putting ice down there. i reached in and realized when it cut me that it was actually glass, not ice. oy. well, at least it wasn't plastic! he hadn't mentioned no glass in the disposal, hehe. so, it was glass, but from what? oh, wait, where's my little shot glass measuring cup? aha, oops. i started telling my husband, damon, oh no, this is my fault, i did it this time! shit. now what? the last thing i wanted to do was call maintenance!

part of me thought, why not just run it and finish the job? it seemed to me, it would sharpen the blades. besides, i already got the big chunk out when i reached in before and it had done a great job with the rest of it so far. i looked online and what do you know? that's exactly what it said to do, run it. i guess back in the old days salespeople would even encourage you to throw a glass coke bottle down there from time to time. i turned it back on and voila, it chewed it up like a champ. so, would i encourage you to throw glass in your disposal? no. but if it slips in, don't sweat it too hard. it will sounds terrible and i would be careful of pieces flying out, but otherwise, it'll be ok.

oh, and the potato salad was a hit!


Fingerling Potato Salad with Gremolata Dressing
Great for salads because they hold their shape once cooked, these fingerlings are steamed, which enables them to retain more nutrients than boiled. (I couldn't find fingerling potatoes at Trader Joe's anymore, so I used their "teeny tiny potatoes" instead) The gremolata-inspired dressing (with parsley, lemon, and garlic) adds a twist to this side.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 3/4 cup)

  • 1/2  pound white fingerling potatoes
  • 1/2  pound red fingerling potatoes
  • 2  tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2  teaspoon salt
  • 1/4  teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1  tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1  teaspoon grated lemon rind
  • 1  garlic clove, crushed and minced
  • 1  tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1  tablespoon capers, drained
  1. Steam potatoes, covered, 12 minutes or until tender. Cover and chill.
  2. Combine juice, salt, and pepper in a large bowl; slowly add oil, stirring well with a whisk. Stir in rind and garlic; let stand 10 minutes. Stir in parsley and capers.
  3. Cut potatoes into quarters; add potatoes to juice mixture, tossing to coat.


  1. Stephanie HeitmeierJuly 3, 2012 at 8:31 AM

    Looks good Karen!

    1. Thanks, Stephanie! It's delicious. Great for summer :)