May 19th, 2008


The Salmon of Doubt.

My microwave oven is clean. Sparkly clean.

It's not its natural state, mind you. In a microwave, in mine at least, you always seem to find small bits of bread crumbs at the bottom, perhaps the odd tiny squirt of overheated sauce somewhere in the inside, regardless of how careful I am.

That was before the salmon.

My girl was not home, and as usual in such cases, in lieu of dinner, I fell back on one of those horribly convenient microwave dishes: just pierce the container's lid with a fork, and pop it into the microwave for a couple minutes. Done.[*]

This time, I chose the salmon and rice dish. I love salmon, and it is my guilty, secret delight that due to the ever rising price of other kinds of fish salmon is popping up all over the microwave dish market as cheap nourishment for the masses.

With the ritual of lid-piercing seen to with the required amount of decorum and an otherwise unremarkable fork, I wandered around on dinner preparation related business while the microwave buzzed away happily.

About thirty seconds from the end, there was that noise, wet and hollow: poff.

My eyebrows knotted. I stopped the microwave and opened the door.

The salmon was not in the container.

The container was, however, about the only place in the microwave where the salmon wasn't.

There was this big rip in the container's lid. My salmon had made a break for it. In all directions at once.

Me? Not cheerful.

The next few minutes saw me at the kitchen table, contemplating my next course of action while dolefully shovelling into my mouth the (much tamer, thank you) rice and what salmon had been successfully scrapped off the microwave's sides in sufficiently consistent chunks.

All the while, from the microwave was coming a strong smell of salmon and, err, of tiny squirts of overheated sauce.

... Only a considerable time later did I lean back from the microwave, wipe my forehead, and lob the sponge back into the sink. Salmon purée sticks.

But at least, now my microwave is clean.

Sparkly clean.

[*] Not that I can't cook, mind you, when I can be bothered to. For that matter, even with ready-made microwave dishes, and regardless of their usually fairly decent quality, I'll commonly give in to creative impulses and reach for the large box of assorted spices and condiments that is one of the first things we unpacked after moving, go figure.