Saturday, March 1, 2008

Yum! and Kitchen Chemistry

Commence drooling.... NOW!

My sister pointed me to a fabulous recipe from ATK for Yum Nua (or Nuer or whatever Romanization sounds good to you). This spicy beef salad is my favorite food in the whole entire world. (Or at least the parts of it that I've eaten the food from, which is, if I do say so myself, quite a few.) It's hard to find a Thai restaurant around here that even serves this (but, hallelujah, I have found one). The recipe turned out so much better than I expected for being made at home. I should have trusted the sister. She knows her food. The main downfall is that it cost almost as much to make as ordering it at a restaurant, but we probably did get twice as much meat out of it. Like we needed that much food when cucumber doesn't exactly keep that well. (Because seriously, my kids won't touch this with a 10 foot pole - remember this story?)

In the end, I paid dearly for the fabulosity. I diced quite a few serranos for this little number and at the end of the night, I was really feeling the burn. Not from eating it, just on my hands from cutting the raw chiles. Pitiful. Weak AND I ought to know better. I'd never had it hit me quite like this before.

Call me weak, but the point is, my hands were dying and I was desperate to try and find something, ANYTHING to alleviate the pain. After much Googling and various failed substances, I stooped to dipping my hands in slightly diluted bleach solution. Can you blame me too much? I know scientific sources say it supposedly doesn't work, but as I stood there with my hands in the big bowl o' bleach for a minute, I actually felt better!

But it gets interesting now, I promise. I looked down and my hands were covered in little bubbles. Little bubbles were slowly streaming out from under my nails and coming off my fingers, slowly collecting at the surface and clinging around the edges of where my fingers entered the bleach. Wha? I yelled in to M, "Hey, I'm making GAS!" (Heh, heh, heh! Seriously, I still think like a 10 year old...) We both got a good laugh out of my apparent ability to make hydrogen gas with my hands and some Clorox. (No, we didn't actually test if it was really hydrogen gas. I'd like to keep my house, thankyouverymuch. But it seems like a safe guess. I suppose it could have been chlorine gas, but please don't ruin my fun and point that out. Toxic sure, but I prefer the flammable H2 possibility.) Was it some previous substance I had tried to alleviate the pain that was reacting? Was it really the capsaicin reacting? Was it my effervescent personality? (HA! I wish...) The world may never know. All I know is, my hands felt much better after a couple dips in that bleach bliss and it was good for a laugh, hazardous chemicals be darned.

1 comment:

Janssen said...

Mmmm, YUM! That looks good. Of course, it doesn't hurt that it's fast Sunday.