Sunday, April 18, 2010

SPAMtastic

Spamboy, this post is for you :)




SPAM (the kind you eat, not the crap that gets sent to your inbox) is a pretty big deal in these parts.  I'm not sure why that is (I guess I need to scour the interweb to find an answer).  Apparently, Tabasco sauce is the drink of choice to swill it down with.  Did you know that there are many varieties of SPAM (hot n spicy, turkey, original, reduced sodium, bacon, garlic, lite, hickory smoked- the ones in bold are ALL pictured)?

I did not.  That is until I moved to Guam.  Where not only is SPAM eaten regularly, it is also discussed quite frequently.  After listening to, but being unable to participate in several SPAM related conversations (other than awkwardly interjecting the tidbit about having a friend whose nickname is Spamboy in desperate attempts to remain in these conversations) because we had no recollection of ever wittingly eating SPAM, Don asked me to pick up a can.  We hemmed and hawed over what type to buy, there are soooo many choices after all, and finally- several months ago- picked up a can of Hot & Spicy SPAM.

For the entire time we've owned it, it sat on our pantry shelf.  Mocking me each time I struggled with coming up with an idea for what to eat for dinner.  It sat there so long, I grew quite used to it sitting there, it became almost pet like.  I would open the door, acknowledge it's presence and then grab food I actually wanted to eat.  That all changed yesterday, when after yet another SPAM related conversation, Don asked me to make SPAM for dinner.

I am not a huge fan of processed foods, there is something especially unappealing to me about who knows what animal parts ground down and pressed into an oddly shaped tin can.

But being the dutiful wife with a husband about to have a rough week at work (and who had her own major craving for processed meat in another form- chili dogs, but was too lazy to do anything about that) decided it was time to break out the SPAM.  But how should we eat it?  How do you cook such a delicacy, it does need to be cooked right (actually, no according to the label you can eat it straight out of the can- blech)?  So, I turned to the most trusted source I could find (after not getting a response to my SPAM SOS from my SPAM eating neighbors) and found millions plenty of SPAM recipes on line.  I settled on SPAM fried rice. I figured we like everything that was going into the rice, except possibly the SPAM, so if the SPAM was as revolting as I imagined, we could just eat around it.

And off I embarked, on my first ever attempt to cook and eat SPAM.

When the food you are about to consume comes sliding out of it's tin with a "jello like sucky noise" (thanks Kristen for that dead on description) and looks like this and smells like cat food, it made me thankful that I am not pregnant.  Because had I been with child, I would have been puking.  SPAM smells, it really has an unpleasant smell.

Luckily, the recipe suggested smooshing it before cooking...

I am glad.  Once I did this, I was able to pretend I was just browning up some canned tuna (which is odd too and probably not something I would do). The things we let ourselves believe to get through the tough times...

Anyway, once the SPAM was all good and brown, I followed the rest of the recipe and this is what we ended up with.



Maybe we've all eaten SPAM before?  Doesn't this look really similar to the fried rice you get at just about any Chinese restaurant?

And to be perfectly, 100% honest it wasn't that bad.  It was spicy. It was salty.  I can almost see where the affection for SPAM comes from.  But I also know what it looks like and smells like before it's cooked and that's why SPAM probably won't be a regularly featured item on our menu.  Except for one small problem, Price LOVED it.  He had seconds last night and leftovers at lunch today.  I'm trying not have hurt feelings that he loves SPAM and dog food more than  as much as all of the really good stuff I cook.  I'm now seriously worried that people have just been lying to me all of these years when it comes to my cooking.  So, now I've opened a can of SPAM and my own can of insecurities, but I'll save all of that for another post.

5 comments:

Amy Ray said...

You are one brave soul!!!! SPAM makes me gag! We used to eat as a kid with eggs and I loved it then but then I woke up. GROSS!!!! :)
Way to venture out!

Stacey said...

When I was at my sister's house last week, they had this single serving size plastic package of SPAM. I honestly thought it was some sort of joke gift for someone. But nope, my brother in law takes the single serving size ones hunting with him and just eats them straight out of the package. I do remember eating it when I was little, must have been a remnant of our Guam days when we moved back to the states.

Spamboy said...

I was wondering why my ears were burning! Was it the fact you mentioned my name? Or was it the disturbance I felt in The Force when the pink cube was birthed from its tin womb?

My hairstylist is a fellow Spam freak and highly recommends making Spam pizza. Fry it in slices, then lay on some whole wheat bagels with cheese. It's like an explosion in your mouth -- or your aorta.

He's borrowing my Spam poetry book. When I get it back, I'll pass it along.

Jennifer said...

Oh boy. Does that mean that I too will soon be cooking with spam? At least you had the smarts to look up a seemingly decent recipe! I probably would have just sliced it and fried it. So now, if my husband ever requests spam, I'll just do the rice. Pretty clever, lady.
PS Think it's hilarious that Price loved it. Doesn't that just figure?

Big Mama Cass said...

Oh dear lord, i just don't think I could get past that initial smell or dog food like consistency. HILARIOUS post though!!! :)

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