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Social Delimma # xxxxx

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I've really honestly had too many embarrassing moments to count in my life time but here's my latest social dilemma and I'll be interested to see how you folks would handle this situation:

My friend's husband was out of town so she said "Come on over, we'll order a pizza and just hang out"

I happened to have a stock pile of homemade sauce and meatballs which I was going to freeze so I offered to bring some of the sauce & meatballs if she supplied the pasta and salad.

Sounds good, right?

Well, I forgot to pack my hunk of Lucatelli, so I called her on the way and said "I'm going to be a few minutes late, I have to stop by the store and get something"

she: "what did you forget"
me: "the cheese"
she: "i have cheese - parmesan, don't worry about it"
me somewhat hesitantly: :Reeaal parmesan?"
she: "yeah - just come on over"

Whew - crisis diverted.....

UNTIL...we're setting up dinner and she grabs, I kid you not - A GREEN CAN of "stuff" out of the refrigerator.

Now, I realize that this isn't as bad as the frozen dinner with the mandarin oranges BUT...I spent hours making sauce, meatballs etc and she put green canned stuff on it?

Would you explain that this is not REAL anything except for maybe REAL bad? Or do you just let it go?

BTW - this happened once before with Garlic....I got handed a bottle of garlic powder - which was why I hesitated when asking the "real cheese question"

Maybe I should buy her a nice wedge of parm or romano, garlic and a cheese grater for a gift?

Or......do I just take my lumps and remember the damn cheese the next time?

  1. To me, a gracious guest should not make the hostess feel bad about what she's providing - that includes not telling her that the green can stuff "isn't real cheese". At the time, I'd just deal with it - eat the green can stuff or just skip it, but don't make a big show out of it. I think the best way to "educate" her, if that's what you want to do, is to say something like - "Oh! I grew up with the green can stuff, but a few years ago I tried fresh grated parm and it was amazing. Now that's all I use! Next time I'll bring a wedge for you." or buy her a nice wedge and grater and give it as a gift and say something to that effect. The important part is to not make her feel bad or embarassed - she's not doing anything wrong, just trying to be a gracious hostess, so treat her like that.

    33 Replies
    1. re: akq

      Seriously! A friend invited me to dinner and I spent a great deal of time, effort and a little bit of cash to find a very nice bottle of wine to show my appreciation for the dinner invitation. When we opened that good bottle of red, she dropped an ice cube in it cause she likes her wine cold.

      What did I do? Toasted her and her dinner.

      1. re: janetms383

        I have many friends who like red cold ... just shrug ...

        1. re: kchurchill5

          I will bring a red to cellar temperature, but IMHO a good red wine should never be served on ice.

          1. re: janetms383

            Mine is always room temp for me, never chilled, but if guests want it, ice is fine for them

            1. re: kchurchill5

              There's a big difference between cellar temperature and room temperature.

              1. re: KTinNYC

                I've read, for those who don't have a wine refrigerator, that, in general, white wine should be refrigerated and removed 15-20 before serving, while red should be refrigerated 15-20 minutes before serving. I find that works well if I've planned ahead.

                1. re: KTinNYC

                  True, FL doesn't have many cellers, lol Except for a few restaurants. Sometimes it is so warm and I don't like cold air conditioning, so room temp is probably hot :)

                  I do agree, different temps by far.

                2. re: kchurchill5

                  I think the point is not the temperature so much as the fact that the melting ice dilutes the wine. Which is fine if it's crappy wine to begin with, but adding water to good wine is waste of good wine. Not that people shouldn't be able to drink their wine any way they want it, but if I know they're going to plonk an ice cube in it, I'm probably not going to bring out the good stuff.

              2. re: kchurchill5

                Oh NOOOO
                never cold....noo

                That's worse than canned cheese IMHO

                1. re: NellyNel

                  I've been served chilled red wine in good restaurants in France & Belgium, where they know their wines. Certain types, like cru beaujolais, they consider best served chilled - not frosty cold, and certainly not on ice, but far cooler than any I've had in the US.

                  1. re: BobB

                    In the summertime, I will bring a Pinot Noir to about 70 degrees. Just taste better than room temp on a warm day.

                    1. re: janetms383

                      It probably should be lower than 70 anyways. Keep in mind that "Room temperature" these days is warmer than it was back in the day. Most reds should be served ~60F (+/- ~5F)

                      1. re: jgg13

                        it probably is.... i'm not very good at guestimating! I know it's chilled

                        1. re: jgg13

                          very true - it was shocking to me when I went to Europe for the first time and the wine was served much cooler than what we get here in the US

                          I personally like my reds a touch cooler than room temperature

                          1. re: chicaraleigh

                            Definitely not the case in the UK where I worked in a restaurant, which was always FREEZING in the winter.We had to take the bottles of red into the kitchen before our shifts and place them around the stoves to keep them somewhat warmish! The cutomers would go crazy when the reds were the slightest bit chilled!

                            1. re: chicaraleigh

                              My experience was just the opposite. I was really surprised in Italy to see bottles of wine displayed on the street outside the little wine shops in hot weather. The wine shop here where I make about 95% of my wine purchases has their wine shipped all the way from the producer to the store at 56 degrees, and it's all held in the store at that temperature.

                              I prefer my red wine cooler than (average) room temperature. All too often, red wine I order in a restaurant is cellared and served way too warm.

                              1. re: CindyJ

                                I prefer it cooler, too, and find that my hand warms up the wine too much by the time I've reached the last few sips.

                                1. re: chowser

                                  That's what the wine glass stem is for! ;-)

                                  1. re: pinkprimp

                                    When you have a white wine glass, yes, but with the red, my hand naturally goes near/around the bowl. And, what's up with the new stemless glasses?

                        2. re: BobB

                          I have had red chilled, but I really feel it has to be room temp to be fully appreciated..

                          Why would you bother with wine in Belgium anyway...the beer is just so extraordinary ?!

                          1. re: NellyNel

                            I'm not much of a beer drinker, never have been. Just not my thing.

                            1. re: BobB

                              Oh wow...
                              I wasn't either until I went to Belgium - it's a totally different experience there - much more like wine...
                              And the stuff they export doesn't hold a candle to the stuff they keep for themselves!...
                              oh well!
                              Ya - everything is a personal preference - we can't be judgemental of other peoples particular tastes ..(I have to remind myself!!) I put ketchup on steak!

                          2. re: BobB

                            Exactly. The European tradition is "cave temperature," which somewhere along the way, Americans interpreted as "room temperature." Not the same animal! '-)

                          3. re: NellyNel

                            Agreed, but I have friends that like it chilled, so they are guests and if they want chilled let them chill it.

                        3. re: janetms383

                          My post was about manners and not intended to start a debate on wine temp.....
                          If someone was gracious enough to invite me for dinner, it's my option to select a fine bottle of wine. Which I would do in appreciation regardless of whether my hostess shares my wine snobbery or not! And, if she chose to abuse the fine wine, I sure wouldn't call her out on it!

                          1. re: janetms383

                            And you did absolutely the right thing. We have an 85 y.o. friend who probably only drinks wine when with us. And she wants that ice in it and that's how it gets served to HER at our house. She's not going around the table adding ice to everyone's glass - just her own :) I love her so much she could mix with coke or milk and I would smile happily.

                            1. re: c oliver

                              HA HA HA..."Drink your big black cow...and get outta here."
                              --Steely Dan

                              Milk + Coke = Black Cow
                              MOO!

                          2. re: akq

                            AKQ, I can't seriously consider any answer except yours. Perfect.

                            1. re: Sinicle

                              AKQ, I can't seriously consider any answer except yours. Perfect.
                              ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                              Are you in the belief the *friend* does not know there are different grating cheese available, or that she actually does own a grater? How about if the friend actually has had fresh grated cheese out in a restaurant, but she, and her family prefer the green can instead of any other cheeses available? Don't you think these are possible considerations with due respect to the friend in mind.

                              1. re: fourunder

                                If the friend hadn't said she had 'real' Parmesan on hand one might give her a reasonable doubt here. As I've said here I use both, but I wouldn't call the one in the green can 'real Parmesan' . All the more reason to find a way to handle the situation gracefully. I suppose the BEST way is to ignore the whole thing though. That way you can't make a mistake.

                                Isn't it great to spend time on this stuff when the guys in DC have to figure out how to save us all??? Cheese vs. the future of the country!!! Same, huh?

                                1. re: Midlife

                                  >>>Isn't it great to spend time on this stuff when the guys in DC have to figure out how to save us all<<<<<
                                  funny..... but in fact, green-can-parm-gal and the politicos are equally clueless!!!

                                  1. re: alkapal

                                    I that's true we're all in deep parm.

                          3. Life is short... forget about it and move on.......oh yeah, and remember to bring the cheese next time.

                            The problem with providing gifts is people have long memories and in some cases wonder why you have given them such an unusual gift......if your friend figures out, or assumes you did not like the generosity of friendship extended to you by inviting you over for the meal and get together... and question the food offered to you.....she may become offended, and rightfully so in my opinion.

                            5 Replies
                            1. re: fourunder

                              This is a social dilemma? Anyway, I agree with you that if she shows up with cheese and a grater, the reaction will be to feel bad, or pissed, about her can of cheese. It's like when my wife got holiday presents a couple times of baskets full of soap... she's SURE that she smells bad LOL

                              The only way to educate is to whip out the wedge and grater when she comes to your house... if she likes it, she knows what to get.

                              1. re: woodburner

                                It's like when my wife got holiday presents a couple times of baskets full of soap... she's SURE that she smells bad LOL......
                                ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                                Many years ago I was running a Nightclub/Restaurant and was in charge of a large staff. For Christmas, I received 14 bottles of Cologne from them....not one was a duplicate of any brand.....Do you think the staff was really trying to tell me something?

                                1. re: fourunder

                                  Hate to say it, but your problem isn't the green can of cheese.

                                  1. re: monku

                                    monku,

                                    glad to report since that Christmas Day, I have received only a total of three bottles of cologne in the past 30 years......

                                    1. re: fourunder

                                      I'm just envious because years ago when I was running a nightclub/restaurant they never gave me anything but a hard time.

                              1. If it was me, I wouldn't be upset. Hey, I'm a pretty damn decent cook, but some of my friends haven't got a clue. The green can says "Parmesan" on the label. And maybe one day, a long long time ago, it was. For me the most important thing is that a friend invited me over to share an evening. That's a very special thing. Even with a green can.

                                1. ya'll are right maybe I am just being too emotional about this but for some reason, it's still sticking under my skin.

                                  If I had dropped by the house and she said, here - have some pasta and handed me the green can, that would be one thing.

                                  This situation was different, I was bringing the majority of the meal (therefore my responsibility to ensure that the best meal possible was being put out), recognized my mistake and was more than glad to correct it (ie, stopping at the store) and was told "don't worry we got you covered"

                                  Again - can't really explain why this irritating me so much...I think maybe i am more venting than anythign else.

                                  You'll be happy to know that I didn't say one word about the evil green can when I was at her house :-)

                                  23 Replies
                                  1. re: chicaraleigh

                                    Forget about it and move on before it ruins your friendship.

                                    20+ years ago we all had that green can of cheese in our refrigerators.....she'll get it one day. Almost every pizza place you go to has that cheese on the table.

                                    1. re: monku

                                      "20+ years ago we all had that green can of cheese in our refrigerators....."

                                      I beg your pardon - in my household - NEVER!
                                      I grew up in Brooklyn - where even 40 years ago - we frowned upon that little green can!

                                      1. re: NellyNel

                                        There was a time - a long, long, time ago - where the little green can was exotic in the hinterlands of Idaho. We were 'gourmet' because we didn't grate the velveeta for our 'noodles' but used an 'Eyetaylan' cheese.

                                        I was very glad to leave those times and that place (apoligies to those still stuck there!).

                                        1. re: alwayscooking

                                          When I was a kid, my mother had that 'green can' in the cupboard... fresh grated parmesan was a total unknown - and I thought I HATED parmesan cheese because it always tasted like old socks! lol You just couldn't get fresh stuff in Australia until about twenty years ago - but now it's so ubiquitous I'm surprised anyone still uses the dried variety. Still, that's their choice. Just don't put any on your plate if you don't want it.

                                        2. re: NellyNel

                                          Yea, mom always had Locatelli Romano. But after she passed away Dad always got the green can. Mom was Sicilian and from the Bronx, Dad was Irish and from a small town in PA. LOL I grew up, moved out and got back to Locatelli and am much happier for it. :)

                                          Funny story: myself and some others were invited to a friend's place for dinner. We all worked in the resto biz. I teased the hostess for serving a bottled salad dressing. She's never let me live it down. I hosted our next dinner and she offered to bring the bread and showed up with a loaf of Wonder bread. We're a tough crowd that way and are a bunch of smartasses and sometimes brutally honest. Thank goodness.

                                          I understand perfectly, your thinking about the labor and love that went into making that sauce and those meatballs, Chicareleigh. But I guess sometimes you just gotta smile, chuckle to yourself and eat. And then, later on, u can bitch about it on Chowhound w/ us. :) Mangia!

                                      2. re: chicaraleigh

                                        "This is no social crisis...just another tricky day for you." --The Who
                                        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FHT8v9...

                                        There are way bigger fish to fry in this world. Let it go. To each (cheese) her own!

                                        1. re: chicaraleigh

                                          Well, she invited you for pizza, maybe precisely because she knows what a PITA you are about food and wanted to keep it low-key and easy, this time.

                                          You then said that you happened to have some leftovers you could provide - that's how I interpret "meatballs and sauce headed for the freezer". Wonderful leftovers, but leftovers, something already prepared, not especially for this dinner. So you already perhaps overcomplicated this meal, in her eyes, and deprived her of pizza. And maybe she was just plain HUNGRY.

                                          1. re: julesrules

                                            I see it the same....and my Dh, who was a Hound when I met him, had a can of the green cheese and it took me about 8 years to break him of the habit. I had my wedge of fresh in the cheese drawer, he had his can. One day the can was gone.

                                            1. re: julesrules

                                              second, she was probably starving.
                                              if you weren't friends with her for her culinary expertise, then don't de-friend her because of her lack thereof

                                            2. re: chicaraleigh

                                              I grew up with the green can of grated cheese. Sometimes the name brand and sometimes the off brand. I thought it was just fine . . . until I went to an Italian restaurant where they grated fresh parmesan cheese on my pasta! Sent my taste buds into over drive. I even had to ask for more as I ate my meal. Actually I think I could have been happy just eating that cheese and forgetting the pasta, LOL! So, in the case of your friend I would say it is a case of "ignorance is bliss." She just isn't fortunate enough to know any better, so invite her over, as others have said, and introduce her to the world of REAL cheese.

                                              1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                From your friend's point of view, it's not an evil green can; it's what she puts on her pasta. What the heck, if your gravy and meatballs were spectacular, a little green can cheese isn't going to hurt it. If that's the worst social dilema you have with this friend, chersh that friendship. I'll let you in on a secret. There's probably something about YOU that drives your friend buggy.

                                                1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                  I won't admit here how I know, but believe me, the stuff in the green can really won't kill you.

                                                  1. re: Midlife

                                                    I love you, LOL. No, I am not a fan and don't like it, I love fresh, but there are some who love it and hate fresh, so I have both ... also I have it as back up. I made pasta a few weeks ago, swore I had parm ... well I had mozz, Well make a great simple fresh tomato sauce with mushrooms so I used the dreaded green can .... Nooooo not the green can ... and I'm still alive, :) I didn't love it but it was better than none. It was 10 pm, dead tired, no money on hand, didn't go to the store and gone for 2 days. That is why it sits in my fridge. Healthier than than Double cheeseburger down the street with biggie fries and soda...

                                                    And Midlife ... I'm still alive too

                                                    1. re: kchurchill5

                                                      When I was a kid I would notice which of my friends' families didn't save glass bottles for the redemption value. It became a measure of who was 'rich'. I'm thinking that checking for whether or not a household uses only fresh Parm is a pretty good measure of who's a chowhound. I also measure Chinese restaurants by what kind of broccoli they serve: standard florets = Americanized; Gai Lan = give the place a chance.

                                                      1. re: Midlife

                                                        I still can't figure out why someone would love the jar better, but hey, a ongoing blog some love red wine cold and endless others we debate. I just try to please all. So since I have lots of company ... I keep everything on hand.

                                                        Had a ravioli party 2 months ago ... all fresh made with pasta and wontons, some tomato sauced, some butter, some sweet, some white sauced. Had fresh parm on the side and I was asked by 3 out of 45 if I had the other parm, (I had fresh grated) they wanted the dried green stuff. Also I had fresh goat cheese, Probably 5 couldn't touch that and 3 or 4 others couldn't do the crumbled blue. I'm wondering what they do eat for cheese other than orange cheese slices. But just me.

                                                    2. re: Midlife

                                                      Hey, I was raised on the green can and I agree it's harmless. Also pretty much tasteless, but harmless. Except for that one time when I was at my dad's house, years after my mom passed away, when he brought out a green can that had passed its sell-by date by at least a decade or two. There comes a point at which even being composed of 50% preservatives doesn't help!

                                                      1. re: BobB

                                                        too funny! I was at my Mom's and asked her if she had parmesan. She pulled out a can that had expired 4 years previously. I said, Mom, throw that out. She looked at it and said, it's not black or anything. I left it on the counter, and sure enough, she put it back in the fridge.

                                                          1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                            And I don't know why she wants to save it since she obviously doesn't use it !!

                                                            1. re: janetms383

                                                              Well, she needs to be able to offer it to guests, like you! ;-)

                                                        1. re: BobB

                                                          Let's see: We have one, "really won't kill you" and one, "it's harmless". Excellent! Not referring to the cheese.... but your ringing endorsements!

                                                          1. re: Scargod

                                                            Not surprisingly, my sense of humor once again goes unappreciated. :o|

                                                    3. Perhaps she honestly cannot tell a difference in taste and thinks you pretentious for using the "fresh stuff".

                                                      I have some very good friends who just-don't-get-it. For them, food - real or pre-fab - is only a vehicle to fill an empty space in the stomach. For them, they could care less whether it's fresh ground prime or a 1/4 w/cheese from you know where. In 4 bites, both are gone, taste buds be damned! Those people exist..... But they are still great friends with redeeming qualities in other areas. We just don't often eat together.

                                                      Next time, take her lead and stick with the pizza. It was her initiating the invite after all.

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: CocoaNut

                                                        yeah, I mean - she definitely falls into that crowd to a certain degree but the thing is she KNOWS what a PITA I am about food.....

                                                        anyway I appreciate ya'll letting me let it all to folks who get the "food thing" :-)

                                                      2. I think you should have just said, "I've been delayed, but I'm on my way." And stopped at the store regardless. It was providing that little detail to her that caused things to start to go astray.

                                                        If I'd have gone to all that trouble to make that amazing meal, I would have wanted to ensure the finishing touch was to my standard. That would have meant being cagey for why I was late, just to ensure success and mental well-being.

                                                        2 Replies
                                                        1. re: JamieK

                                                          Bingo... Jamie got it right. You're annoyed with yerself, chicaraleigh, for giving her the chance to stick you with the stinky cheese!!! It's like a chess game. it's ok. you'll get it right next time!!!!

                                                          1. re: JamieK

                                                            oh - very good approach! I should not have caved when she asked my why I was gong to be late!! This definitely falls into the "remember the damn cheese next time" category

                                                          2. What - the green can is not real cheese??? Who knew?? The important part is the invite and company. I grew up on the green can and won't go near the stuff now if I can help it, but for many people - especially my folks - the green can is the best - the substandard stuff is the yellow can (no name). There are many for whom scalloped potatoes out of a box are considered made from scratch. There are bigger issues to fix in this world. Embrace the green can - it brings back fond memories.

                                                            3 Replies
                                                            1. re: juliewong

                                                              HA HA HA HA! I didn't know there was a yellow can (which shall remain nameless). That just totally struck my funny bone. Like the green can isn't bad enough, there's a yellow one that's even worse--a blue light special, as it were. ;)

                                                              1. re: kattyeyes

                                                                yeah, i'm not sure that i know what greater evil lurks in the bowels of the yellow can..but it did make think back to old white/black generic labels of the 80's a la Dharma Initiative (from Lost)

                                                              2. re: juliewong

                                                                I think the problem here is that the green can says: 100% real cheese

                                                                Maybe it would have been better to ask if she had FRESH instead of REAL?

                                                              3. enjoy your meatballs and sauce. If they are are great as you state, not having the cheese of choice should not be a deal breaker.

                                                                Next enjoy your friend's company

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: jfood

                                                                  You have crystallized my thoughts, as always jf! ( Must be the Jersey thing...) Even the green can can't destroy the wonderfulness of my meatballs. On a different note, does the green can even HAVE to be refrigerated?? At our house, growing up, I remember it being in the cupboard (shuddering now....), although my Mom did discover the joy of fresh circa 1975 and never looked back. adam

                                                                2. Honestly, didn't we all start with the green can? You could have shown up with some expensive aged stuff and what would that have accomplished? Probably would have made her feel uneducated and/or inferior. Enjoy your friend; surely everything about her is not from a green can.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: Scargod

                                                                    I still have the 'green can' in my refrigerator...
                                                                    I buy $40/# aged gouda but there are times, like when I open a can of Campbell's tomato soup, that I want it instead. I have no idea why....it's just the way it is.
                                                                    Enjoy the friendship ...it's ALWAYS more important to nurture it rather than the price/taste/knowledge of the cheese your forgot. Your friend appears to have the right perspective.

                                                                  2. Oooh I like the "Reeaal Parmesan?" part!!

                                                                    It's ok girly, the can reads 100% Real No Fillers http://worldstoreone.ecrater.com/prod... - she didn't lie to ya!!

                                                                    ;o)

                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                    1. re: Boccone Dolce

                                                                      It's real cheese OK. I have a general disdain for pre-packaged grated cheeses. I guess I think of it like hamburger: What's in there? For Kraft Grated Parmesan, there's no "filler", but there's other stuff and then there's quality and taste.

                                                                      Kraft's label says:
                                                                      Ingredients:
                                                                      Parmesan Cheese (Pasteurized Part-Skim Milk, Salt, Less than 2% of Enzymes, Cheese Culture, Cellulose Powder to Prevent Caking, Potassium Sorbate to Protect Flavor).

                                                                      Also, (from Internet sources), Kraft says about their enzymes:
                                                                      Kraft Grated Parmesan utilize microbial rennet which is NOT made with enzymes extracted from animal tissue. The grated Parmesan may contain lipase (from animal source). If the product contains Chymosin it is a microbiologically produced coagulating enzyme. This enzyme (Chymosin) is not derived from any animal source.

                                                                      The Food Institute Report, Article date: January 8, 2001: The Food and Drug Administration is extending the extension of a temporary permit issued to Kraft Foods, Inc., to market test products designated as "100% Grated Parmesan Cheese" that deviates from the U.S. standards of identity for parmesan cheese and grated cheese in that the product is formulated by using a different enzyme technology that fully cures the cheese in 6 months ...

                                                                      (This is all I got because I did not want to sign up for a free trial. It implies that the cheese is six month, or less, old when turned into powder.)

                                                                      1. re: Scargod

                                                                        Useful to know that it's a parmesan that vegetarians can eat! Now whether they'd want to...

                                                                    2. You are way too self-congratulatory about your cooking. If it is that important to you, stay home and eat your own food with your own cheese.

                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                      1. re: maddogg280

                                                                        self-congratulatory? I'm not sure I understand? I never said that the food was awesome - or even good for that matter. I simply stated that I spent hours making it.....

                                                                      2. For all of the food snobs posting here who disdain pre-grated cheese: I urge you to order some Vella pre-grated, Aged Dry Jack cheese. I keep it in a big jar on top of the fridge, and when ever I need a blast of cheesy goodness, I grab a handful and throw it into whatever I'm cooking. This is the ultimate artisinal convenience food. (And it's not cheap -- $32 for 2 pounds.)

                                                                        1. You're irritated???? I'd be irritated if I invited you for pizza (maybe that's what I want because DH is on a diet or I just want it) and you decide to bring a meal. How do I say no without sounding ungracious? Then you want to complain that I don't have the cheese you would use? Maybe I just used my cheese at a party with Acacia honey as an app. Maybe I LIKE the green can (my g-son does - who cares). And then you want to educate me? You would not be invited again.

                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                          1. re: Linda VH

                                                                            i see your point but please keep in mind - I didn't complain to her-- i"m simply venting this issue in this forum in the hopes that someone will feel my pain in regards to bad cheese ;-)

                                                                            1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                              Take away the "you're complaining" part (as you're not), but otherwise I agree with Linda. You're overthinking all of this.

                                                                          2. "Sounds good, right"?

                                                                            No it doesn't sound right.

                                                                            1. Although I've always had an interest in food it's only been within the past three or four years that it's really become a passion for me. I've learned over these past few years that not everyone shares my love/enthusiam for food. When I stopped trying to change them, we were all much happier.

                                                                              I've learned some friends/family will make me homemade lasagna and some will make me dinner opening a can and a box. I learned some friends/family appreciate my cooking efforts and some really don't care if it's out of a box or a can or homemade. I've learned some friends/family will enjoy an adventure at a new ethnic restaurant and some are more comfortable at Cactus Willie's Buffet and I love them all just the same.

                                                                              I think you need to take your lumps, and keep your wonderful homemade meatballs and sauce for yourself next time.

                                                                              1. I'd just let it go and keep on being friends with the person. Good thing it wasn't a first date -- it would really be a deal breaker, now wouldn't it?

                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: neverlate

                                                                                  LOL! For sure....that would have been a deal breaker :-)

                                                                                2. Not everyone is a Chow.

                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                  1. re: NellyNel

                                                                                    Kind of like getting handed a nice steaming mug of Taster's Choice as opposed to your usual freshly ground small batch roasted gourmet coffee. I just can't bring my pantry everywhere........ OOOOOOOOOOH! THAT'S why I'm such a homebody. I have friends to MY house to cook. Friends..... bring salad and wine.

                                                                                  2. A truly tragic dilemma.

                                                                                    1. It sounds as if you have a Felix and Oscar relationship. and you are both aware of your 'odd couple' relationship with food. You could have confronted it - 'tsk tsk, you know that just isn't cheese' - and laughed at each other.

                                                                                      I am with you though, the green can just isn't parm reg. It's texture is strange and chalky - like fat flavored wittling remainders. And, unlike my favorite parm, the nutrition facts are right on the side for all to read BEFORE you eat it - rather than being blissfully unaware of those stupid calories and fats.

                                                                                      Me, at dinner, would politely refuse the 'cheese' stating that it probably didn't need it. And remember, it could have been Velveeta like I was once served with my speghetti.

                                                                                      15 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: alwayscooking

                                                                                        Velveeta with spaghetti? UGH! That makes the green can sound pretty darn gourmet. What the heck was that person thinking? Were they on medication?

                                                                                        1. re: danhole

                                                                                          I've heard told from my mother than the only cheeses available in the grocery store when she was growing up in the '50s were velveeta and cottage. This was in a small town (~800 people), very isolated (next closest town is 45 min away). We lived in the same town when I was growing up in the '80s, still very small, very isolated, but slightly better in terms of food options - the green can WAS gourmet, the other options were mild cheddar and American singles. Now 2 decades later, still small, still isolated, but they have a brand new supermarket, real cheese in a real cheese case, though still limited options (i.e. only one brand/variety of parm, blue, goat...).

                                                                                          1. re: mpjmph

                                                                                            mpjmph,

                                                                                            I am not adverse to velveeta or the green can. I actually have the green can of shredded parmesan in my fridge for back up, and I grew up on the grated cheese, velveeta, and cheez whiz! But velveeta on spaghetti just seems so wrong, don't you think? Now if it was just spaghetti noodles and some kind of a weird mac and cheese, well . . . maybe?

                                                                                            Dani

                                                                                            1. re: danhole

                                                                                              Yeah... it sounds weird, but imagine the ONLY cheese you have access to is velveeta, and the new Italian recipes start showing up in recipes and your husband who was in Italy during the war keeps taking about some strange flat bread stuff with cheese all over it. The recipes all call for grated cheese on top, some kind you've never heard of, but cheese is cheese right? If the difference were that important the grocer would know about and would carry the weird sounding stuff, plus you already have a block of velveeta in the fridge.

                                                                                              That's pretty much how my grandmother learned to make "spaghetti."

                                                                                                1. re: mpjmph

                                                                                                  Excellent point.
                                                                                                  The green can cheese and Velveeta are being sold. Someone's buying it and it's fascinating to me there are people who think it's the 'non foodie', the uneducated that buy these products.
                                                                                                  From my experience it's quite the contrary.
                                                                                                  In many cases it's the person, like the person who's invited the OP over for pizza, who doesn't want the OP to know she/he's got it in their fridge because she/he knows there's a risk of being judged.
                                                                                                  I'll never forget the time friends of mine, when I opened their refrigerator to find butter, had Velveeta AND the green can in it.
                                                                                                  These people are huge foodies and I would have never thought in a billion years these two food items would be in their home.

                                                                                                  1. re: latindancer

                                                                                                    Absolutely, just look at all those threads out here about "guilty pleasures" and the like. We've all got something in our fridge or pantry that would never make the cover of Gourmet magazine!

                                                                                                2. re: danhole

                                                                                                  Velveeta on spaghetti, agreed. Naaaaa, that is just wierd to me.

                                                                                                  1. re: kchurchill5

                                                                                                    But isn't something that's all the rave VERY similar? Macaroni and cheese?

                                                                                                    1. re: Scargod

                                                                                                      I won't even on my mac ... yes I have had Kraft and survived. Not my choice and never on mac. I have served melted velveeta with salsa for friends who love it with chips and I admit ... me too. Also on a ham and cheese or egg sandwich it stays melted longer honestly. But NOT on spaghetti. And never for company well most ... For my personal parties I make a great cheese dip with salsa but 1/2 my friends prefer the velveeta so I make both and eat both. For catering, never ... unless requested and I have been requested ... Actually I sat them down once to have them sample. I made both dips. They like the velveeta over my beer cheese and scallion dip. First time ever that this happened.

                                                                                                  2. re: danhole

                                                                                                    Oooh! OohGAWD- I just had a horrific flashback of my 14 year old best friends Mom. She would (godresthersoul) make 'spahghetti' by warming up Ramen Noodles in hot water, and topping it with a few squirts of Heinz!
                                                                                                    That makes velvetta and spaghett just a little less disgusting, no?

                                                                                                      1. re: Boccone Dolce

                                                                                                        The absolute HORROR of that was quickly repressed in your youthful memory as a way to go on living! But that sub-surface memory and experience SCARRED you for LIFE! Only now that you are older and the memory has re-emerged, can you now re-evaluate all the bad things in your life that stemmed from that seminal experience and now try to start to embark on, to build a normal healthy life. It won't be easy, it won't be quick - but we will all be supporting you in the years to come.

                                                                                                        1. re: Boccone Dolce

                                                                                                          I had a friend in college that did this, too.
                                                                                                          I think she often struggled to afford to put anything at all on the table, though, and this would certainly be cheap.

                                                                                                    1. re: danhole

                                                                                                      LOL uhhhh velvetta mac and cheese anyone? Spaghetti isn't elbows, I admit, but the taste is probably the same. This is called comfort food. Also called cheap. Don't judge. Although most of the time when I desire velvetta mac and cheese, medication would probably be an equally satisfying alternative...

                                                                                                  3. I would've happily frozen the meatballs and sauce for another time and gone for the pizza and the visit with a friend. I have two friends who are NOT chowhounds - could care less what they eat as long as it's fast and filling. I figure they have simple tastes, so when I cook for them, I keep it simple, roast chicken or something on the grill. I consider things that take a long time to cook are special, and I want to feel sure that guests appreciate the time, effort, and money I've put into it. Once, when I made my cornbread dressing with dried fruit for a holiday meal, a cousin piped up that it was good, but didn't touch Stove Top (really!). So: some of us are (lucky) chowhounds, and some (sadly) ain't!

                                                                                                    32 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: bayoucook

                                                                                                      ouch - stove top? wow is all i can say to that....I probably would have broken down and cried

                                                                                                      1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                        Would've had I not had experience of her already. She's one of those who think people cook and entertain just to show off.....can NOT and would NEVER understand chowhoundedness. I did have an "off-set" that year. My other cousin's fiance from Ohio said that I might make a cornbread dressing lover out of him after all! He IS a foodie and we love talking. I continue to ignore the other cousin.....

                                                                                                        1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                          I'm a little late to this discussion, but IMHO, just because someone cooks something from scratch it doesn't necessarily taste better than something made from a package. Lots of people cook from scratch, but for whatever reason (lousy recipe, cooking skills, whatever) the result is not worth the effort. Possibly/probably not the case for bayoucook, but I'm just saying, I've been disappointed many, many times.

                                                                                                          Whoever told bayoucook that Stovetop tasted better needs a refresher course in social skills.

                                                                                                          For the record, I haven't bought the green can for many years, but I've also tossed moldy wedges of cheese so many times I may rethink this so I have an "emergency" stash...

                                                                                                          1. re: rednails

                                                                                                            FWIW I *did* go buy a can after this thread and I have to say, it's not as good as it used to be!! When we were kids, I have very fond memories of a very pungent (stinky) cheese. It may have all been artificial ingredients, but it topped off my Minute Rice very nicely - as long as I used a lot of butter (ok, pre-hound days). I also fondly remember our Stinky Bread.

                                                                                                            This can I bought, said "real" and it is, but the flavor and smell is very mild.

                                                                                                        2. re: bayoucook

                                                                                                          bayoucook, I had a boyfriend, back in my early 20s, who loved Kraft Dinner. I made him real homemade macaroni cheese - and he preferred the Kraft stuff.

                                                                                                          No, we didn't break up over that, and I think he eats real food now.

                                                                                                          1. re: lagatta

                                                                                                            That reminds me of the time I took my little brother on a long journey down the east side of Manhattan, over the Brooklyn Bride, meandered around (as we had gotten a little lost) and then finally ended up at our destination - Grimaldi's, which I was told rivals the best of the best pizza in New York. The pie was beautiful: smoking hot, a few charred parts, various pockets of sauce; you know, imperfectly perfect. It was delicious too: chewy where it should be chewy and crusty where it should be crusty. The cheese, dough and sauce seemed to work together to create a slice (if you will) of heaven. I asked my brother what he thought. His response? "I like the place in the mall better." 'The place in the mall' is Sbarros. Sigh.

                                                                                                            1. re: Melanie

                                                                                                              Those are the people who made leisure suits popular in the 70's. You just want to hit them on the head with a ball peen hammer and knock some sense (and taste) into them. I have a few similarly frustrating friends, and for serious foodie events, they are dealt out. Not in a mean spirited way, they just don't get it.

                                                                                                            2. re: lagatta

                                                                                                              One of my son's friends prefers the frozen stouffer's mac & cheese. A few weeks back, I made a batch of mac & cheese for dinner. My son's friend came over armed with his own box that he promptly put into the microwave. I have to say, it was a bit, ummmm, what's the right word, disturbing?!? to watch him eat out of a plastic tray knowing that there was a full pan of homemade stuff.......

                                                                                                              1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                chica,

                                                                                                                Just because it's homemade doesn't mean it's good....... :-)

                                                                                                                Many years ago when I was throwing a post Communion party for my son, niece and nephew from three families total...with all the usual suspect invited. The party was planned as an outdoor barbecue and I had everything planned accordingly for the theme with more food than could be possibly imagined. Steaks, Ribs, Burgers, Hot Dogs, Italian Sausages, Cheeses, Lobster, Shrimp, King Crab, Sides and Salads. You name it....I'll bet I covered it.......

                                                                                                                One of the Maternal Grandmothers for one of the kids who received Communion asked if she could provide anything for the party......naturally, I said everything was covered and her presence was all that was required. She still insisted she would like to make something for the party......I simply stated that would be nice and considerate of her to do so.....bear in mind, I already knew from history this lovely woman was a terrible cook.. her contribution was a some sort of baked pasta dish which included the following: Ziti Pasta, Lima Beans and Canned Corn Niblets in an orange sauce of some type......not fun to look at. Unfortunately, the weather turned and rain was expected, so the party was moved indoors. After getting all the food inside and seating everyone....the only seats left available were two next to this Grandmother....so that's where I sat with my GF...me in the middle. While digging into to the vast assortment of food, the GM asked if I was going to try her creation.....I said "Absolutely" and took a large spoonful and ate every bit. Now my GF asks how the dish....I look to my right and the GM has a big smile on her face....I look back at my GF and say "it's great" with a wink. The GF says to give her some so I proceed to give her the smallest amount possible on a large serving spoon.....The GF says she'd like more.....Again, I tryto give her a very small amount. The GF then elevates her voice, sort of demanding more. I oblige.......After the party is long over and the GF and i are preparing ourselves to turn in from the long day.....the GF asks me with contempt in her eyes...."did you really think that pasta dish GM made was good?" ......I said of course not, didn't you see me wink at you......

                                                                                                                The fact was the pasta was like bubble gum and the both of us had tremendous difficulty swallowing the dish....and it was totally bland to boot.

                                                                                                                Lessons learned.

                                                                                                                The moral of the story....

                                                                                                                I happy for your son's friend he was able to eat something he enjoyed.....

                                                                                                                1. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                  funny. i thought the moral was honesty is the best policy

                                                                                                                2. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                  Oh my - I hope that someone takes him in hand and lets him know that you eat what you are served when a guest for dinner (unless, of course, there would be a severe reaction like gagging or hives!). If not he may grow up to be a very poor guest - if it isn't too late already!

                                                                                                                  1. re: alwayscooking

                                                                                                                    alwayscooking,

                                                                                                                    First he's a kid...give him a break.

                                                                                                                    Second, I have learned over the years, when it comes to people they have many quirks, phobias and idiosyncrasies.....it's not my place to judge or speak up, unless asked for an opinion.

                                                                                                                    1. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                      I don't believe that alwayscooking was recommending speaking up and judging the "kid." But rather some adult family figure needs to teach him somemanners. That was as poor an example of manners as I've come across in a while. And if he can operate the MW, then the "kid" is probably not 3 or 4 years old.

                                                                                                                      1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                        c,

                                                                                                                        I'm not trying to be a pain here to you....merely provoke some different train of thought. Truth be told, unless we know why the kid brought the frozen meal, we will never know the reason for his action.

                                                                                                                        As for the breach in manners....consider changing the scenario. You are invited to dinner....and you choose, without notifying the host, you are bringing a special dessert you think everyone would enjoy, a nice surprise is your only intention. The host has already prepared a dessert for after dinner. Should the host be offended in this situation and would you be guilty if the host put your dessert out and you ate both desserts. Where does the line cross?

                                                                                                                        BTW....You can't say you would not bring the dessert first before asking the host......you can change the food to a bottle of wine....these discussions come up all the time. Every one seems to feel differently about such scenarios....if there is no malice....I give it little thought and ignore it.

                                                                                                                        1. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                          No, I wouldn't bring any of the above without asking so I'm not putting a different standard on a kid than on an adult. A bottle of wine? Only if I asked can I bring something and the host said perhaps a bottle of wine. And let's not confuse a "hostess gift" which isn't for use that night with bringing your own dinner. Yes, there have been these discussions before. Malice? Of course not. But saying it's correct behavior? Of course not also.

                                                                                                                          And I would hope the host wouldn't be offended by the unsolicited food, but I bet she'd be annoyed. And, if I were the host, and had planned a meal that didn't need any more food, I'd thank the guest and put it away for another time.

                                                                                                                          1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                            I guess you missed the part where I said you could not say....you would not bring..... :-)

                                                                                                                            1. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                              I guess I misunderstood the sentence structure. I thought you were saying that *I* WOULD bring something unsolictied. I wouldn't embararass a guest of any age ---- and I wouldn't embarass a friend who used the green can. But I would use this type of thing for a teaching tool with a child. (Mine are in their 30s now and, of course, perfect :) 0

                                                                                                                            2. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                              really? You only bring wine if you're asked? I always take a bottle because I like to drink wine, or if another libation is offered, as a hostess gift.

                                                                                                                              1. re: janetms383

                                                                                                                                My point - poorly written and I should have edited - is that I'd bring wine as a hostess gift but not as part of that night's dinner. This thread has made me think that in the future I'm going to put bottles of wine in those funny bags and tied up so it's really clear that it's a gift. And if it's opened and served, fine.

                                                                                                                            3. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                              bringing a dessert for the whole group is IN NO WAY SIMILAR to bringing your own meal just for yourself. this is the silliest comparison i've ever heard.

                                                                                                                              1. re: CoryKatherine

                                                                                                                                So Ms. CK,

                                                                                                                                If the teenager had brought a whole tray of Stouffer's Family sized Mac and Cheese, nuked and offered it to everyone.......then it's perfectly acceptable according to you? Bringing food is bringing food. Painting the lines of distinction to fit an argument is semantics and what is silly.

                                                                                                                                1. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                                  are you kidding? to say "bringing food is bringing food" is maddeningly ridiculous. bringing food is not bringing food, and it is NOT semantics.

                                                                                                                                  -bringing your OWN dinner to a dinner party would not be appropriate unless you had allergies or another concern and discussed it with the host/hostess in advance.
                                                                                                                                  -Bringing a WHOLE dinner to a dinner party would not be appropriate and would be EXCEEDINGLY RUDE.
                                                                                                                                  -Bringing a surprise dessert for the whole group to a dinner party could be appropriate and sweet depending on how well you know the group and the host.
                                                                                                                                  - Bringing a small item such as a loaf of bread or a bottle of wine would also be appropriate.
                                                                                                                                  - In all cases it's best to consult with the host.

                                                                                                                                  I'm sorry but politeness is a highly nuanced skill. There are literal experts on subject. It's not black and white but there are clear distinctions to be made.

                                                                                                                                  Obviously for kids we're not going to nail them to the wall, it's acceptable for a kid to be impolite, I wouldn't suggest even saying anything to him (that is his parents job), but any "ask alice" would tell you that what he did was fairly rude.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: CoryKatherine

                                                                                                                                    Dinner Party? This thread started on the subject of a friend inviting another friend over for something to eat. The mac & cheese was referencing a simple dinner and the poster's son's friend had food with him.

                                                                                                                                    The clear distinction to be made is this...there was no rudeness committed by the kid...only a Faux pas. As the OP states below and or above, she found it odd or disturbing, but she wasn't truly offended.

                                                                                                                                    As for Politeness...being nice is innate in all of us until our behavior is influenced and is then learned....where's the skill in being nice, If you have to work at it, you are probably not nice..:-)

                                                                                                                                    1. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                                      1) I said 'dinner party" because you brought up the scenario of being invited over for dinner.
                                                                                                                                      2) niceness may or may not be innate, but manners are certainly LEARNED. My mom literally taught me to write my thank you notes, hold doors for people behind me, address my elders as Mr. or Mrs. and to always eat what I am served at other peoples houses unless I medically can not. I was actually taught that it is rude to refuse and I believe that.
                                                                                                                                      3) I resent the implication that I am not nice based on my argument for polite behavior

                                                                                                                                      1. re: CoryKatherine

                                                                                                                                        I've been having computer problems but wanted to post my equivalent of #2. 100%

                                                                                                                                      2. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                                        being nice is not innate. being selfish is innate.

                                                                                                                          2. re: alwayscooking

                                                                                                                            well, technically - we invited him for mac & cheese........so he ate what we offered :-)

                                                                                                                            JK!

                                                                                                                            I hear what you're saying and it's not something I would do if I were invited to dinner but with kids these days, I'm just glad he wasn't eating a bag of doritos or cheetos for dinner. Not that there is anything wrong with either....

                                                                                                                            I'm also glad that he was sitting down with us at the table, talking to us instead of eating on the sofa watching t.v.

                                                                                                                            And the silver lining.........one less plate to wash!

                                                                                                                            1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                              But wouldn't you agree that something has been missed in his manners training? When you say "with kids these days" it's not like they're a new species. If they're doing these things, it's because they weren't taught otherwise. I wouldn't be lecturing a guest of any age in my home but I sure would take the opportunity afterwards to have a discussion with my own child and make sure s/he knows what's expected both at home and at other's.

                                                                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                Oh yeah, I definitely agree. If that had been my son at someone's house, the car keys, cell phone and xbox would have been on lock down for a month.

                                                                                                                                And I'd probably send him to school with a bagged lunch everyday for a month. Around here you would be ostracized less for hanging a pig snout around your neck compared to packing a lunch, at least in the high school crowd.

                                                                                                                                But again, at the end of the day, he was sitting down at a dining room table actually communicating with us. Much better than the dinner in front of the t.v. that a lot of kids get, some by choice - others by no fault of their own. these days.

                                                                                                                                And quite honestly, I do think to some degree, kids are a new species but that is certainly a whole new can of worms. Just like our parents thought we were a new species, their parents did and their parents did. With each generation, some things change and some things don't.

                                                                                                                                I just feel fortunate that he feels comfortable enough that he comes over to spend time here, eat with us and hang out with us like we're his extended family. A lot, and I mean, a lot, of kids don't have a "safe haven" these days.

                                                                                                                                And at least I give him real cheese <g>

                                                                                                                          3. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                            I have always had high blood pressure & need to watch my sodium intake. As a result, I don't cook with a lot of salt. My family has grown up with food that is well-seasoned, but not heavily salted. Everytime I have tried anything Stouffers, I almost gag on the saltiness -- probably because I'm just not used to it. On the other hand, my son-in-law (God love him) comes from a salty family. He salts everything. a lot. He thinks Stouffers is great and often comments to my daughter (his wife) that she doesn't cook with enough salt. Given the choice between a fabulous home-made, but not salty Mac & Cheese & salty ol' Stouffers, I bet bhe'd pick the Stouffers if you served it to him blind.

                                                                                                                            Could be that this is what this kid likes. Could also be that this kid is trying to be polite & not be a bother by providing his own food. Could be his mamma told him "Chucky, Mrs. Chicaraleigh sure must get tired of having to feed you all the time...."

                                                                                                                            1. re: PattiCakes

                                                                                                                              from what I gather he just plain old likes it better. The only really discouraging part for me is that he won't even try the homemade stuff. But as I mentioned earlier I'm just thankful he's eating something with someone and not off by himself running the streets or eating mindlessly in front of the t.v.

                                                                                                                      2. I wouldn't overthink it. I may of not liked it, but not worried. Some just don't understand. I do have a green can I admit. My son likes it, so does her friends and a few of mind. They hate fresh. And honestly, I have been stuck without fresh for just a quick garnish, not the best but it worked. 99% I use fresh, but we've all been there. It is a back up and more for my guests who don't appreciate or like fresh, which believe it or not, there are many out there. I love the fresh and try to only cook with that but it doesn't always happen. My ex hated fresh, he liked the can so did my son, I cooked with fresh all the time and they wouldn't touch it. So now, I keep both. And I had to rely on the canned but I certainly don't consider it fresh and wouldn't call it fresh by any means, but it isn't the end of the world. I can eat anything and not much bothers me when it comes to food. I'm pretty easy going in that sense.

                                                                                                                        But next time ... Yes don't forget the cheese next time!! :)

                                                                                                                        18 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: kchurchill5

                                                                                                                          Wow - I could understand "not knowing any better" - but I really can't understand actually "preferring" the canned stuff...

                                                                                                                          I remember my father-in-law being very impressed that I had the "real" stuff in my fridge; he said he knew I was going to be a good cook just by seeing that tub!
                                                                                                                          Little did he know that my family would have been horrified that it was store - bought fresh grated - and not grated fresh from the hunk at home!

                                                                                                                          1. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                            I know people who prefer instant coffee to real.
                                                                                                                            I know people who prefer Bud to craft beer.
                                                                                                                            etc etc etc

                                                                                                                            Why wouldn't there be people who prefer the can to the grated stuff?

                                                                                                                            I wish I could think of them now, but I know that I personally prefer some of the low-brow versions of certain things.

                                                                                                                            1. re: jgg13

                                                                                                                              It is a mystery to me why they like the can ... I have no idea.

                                                                                                                              1. re: jgg13

                                                                                                                                Oh I wasn't putting it down - but the canned stuff doesnt really have any taste...it's just like sprinkling sand on your pasta!

                                                                                                                                I prefer shop-rite brand to Kraft mac & cheese myself...I wasn't being snobby - just curious!

                                                                                                                                Although I might have answered my own question because I have family members who won't eat cheese on thier pasta - because - well they call it "fart" cheese!!

                                                                                                                                1. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                  I didn't think you were being snobby (unlike the OP), was just saying that for any product like this, there's always going to be someone who not only doesn't mind it, but prefers it to the "Real Stuff". :)

                                                                                                                                  I don't mind the can, I often, but not always, have some in the fridge purely because I don't often use grated cheese at home and since it lasts just about forever I can sprinkle it on when something comes up unexpectedly. If I'm planning, then I'll just get real cheese, which I prefer.

                                                                                                                                  But I'm sure there are folks out there who prefer the can.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: jgg13

                                                                                                                                    The OP was not being a snob.

                                                                                                                                    Imagine buying Lambourgini and put in generic regular gas - it just wont run the save. The OP can taste the difference between the cheeses (otherwise it won't matter to her) and has spent time preparing the meal - she wants it to ZOOM not chug along at 45mph.

                                                                                                                                    PS A good parm reg can last a very very long time properly stored.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: alwayscooking

                                                                                                                                      alwayscooking, I'm wondering if a point is being missed here?

                                                                                                                                      It's great to be a "foodie," or a "gourmet," or whatever one chooses to call oneself when great and perfect food is a passion. But the point in this case is that anyone who puts food before people is loosing out on one of the greatest joys of life: Friends!

                                                                                                                                      Ir's fine to be passionate about food. Or art. Or music. But life is better if you realize the entire world does not share your particular passion. And more times than not, proseletyzing will make more enemies than it will win converts.

                                                                                                                                      So the point here is that the OP's friend invited her for pizza and a nice relaxed evening together.. But the OP turned it into something the friend never intended it to be, and now is venting about the tragedy of a green can of cheese? I just hope the friend has a massive international audience to vent her frustrations to over not getting her pizza! Think about it!

                                                                                                                                      1. re: Caroline1

                                                                                                                                        Yep, she's probably posting on FriendHound. And the title of her thread....
                                                                                                                                        All I wanted was a good pizza!

                                                                                                                                        1. re: Caroline1

                                                                                                                                          That is a valid point and i see that side of things - however, when I offered (note - offered not forced) to bring meatballs & sauce - she was ecstatic with the idea.

                                                                                                                                          Her husband & son are very picky eaters with limited tolerances for anything outside of frozen pizza, canned soup or frozen chicken nuggets.

                                                                                                                                          She is a bit of a foodie but never gets the chance to really do any thing creative or "foodie" in nature - so this was actually a treat for her. She gets pizza ALL the time - like 3 days a week.

                                                                                                                                          And BTW - if you've ever been to Raleigh you know it's pretty darn hard to find a decent pie....

                                                                                                                                          1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                                            I reckon you've picked this up on the thread by now, Chicaraleigh, but if it is so important to you to have your meal served the way you want, it will be your job to provide all that is necessary. Grousing because the other person does not share your taste, well, I guess that's for a vent on chowhound, although you see, maybe not either.

                                                                                                                                            I was thinking about it from your friend's perspective: wants pizza (although now I know it's a dismal prospect), but is told instead to prepare a salad and pasta. OK, she seems fine with that; good thing (although wouldn't dried pasta prevent your sauce from singing, zooming, whatever?).

                                                                                                                                            ETA: I see you did have to bring this as well. Fair enough. She was ordering out for a reason. You had your bit already prepared and was now looking for her to do more than she planned for the evening.

                                                                                                                                            But then you're running late. Hmmm. She's hungry and she's looking forward to seeing you. And you're late and going to be later. Maybe she was impatient? Maybe having dinner and seeing you was more important? Perhaps for her, timeliness is a value and she is saddened by your priorities as much as you are by hers?

                                                                                                                                            Sorry, the pile-on can't be fun. But there are some great reasons to complain about hosts, guests, friends and family-- particularly those who limit toilet access or volunteer to bring ribs-- but then there are these really tiny events, that may loom large in your imagination, but when shared here, are revealed to be smaller than you realised. I also think that it's one thing to review the offerings of a restaurant, and another to review the contents of a friend's larder.

                                                                                                                                            So I guess now you know how we'd respond facing this supposed 'green-can challenge': we'd assess the situation and realise that this is hardly anything, especially as our friend was just faced with the 'can't order pizza and will turn this evening into a bigger deal' challenge.

                                                                                                                                            Or, is the challenge: how do _you_ make do without the good cheese? I could see how that would be frustrating. Then the answer is: bring your own cheese next time. Especially if you feel it's so important to educate your friend as well.

                                                                                                                                            (May I add how ironic it is to discuss the education of this limited friend in the face of the subject heading of this thread? I'm a horrible pedant, so I suppose this is my 'green can challenge' :) ).

                                                                                                                                          2. re: Caroline1

                                                                                                                                            Caroline - I appreciate the feedback and realize that posting may bring out the more extreme view of any side.

                                                                                                                                            From the OP and her subsequent comments, it does sound like both acknowledge the differences in themselves and still enjoy each other. I too have non-CH's as friends (one of my best friends . . .) and may tease them or not. For those of my friends that have no interest in food, we share other interests. And we have fun. People are their passions - food is only one of mine.

                                                                                                                                            <<Ir's fine to be passionate about food. Or art. Or music. But life is better if you realize the entire world does not share your particular passion.>>

                                                                                                                                            I thought this site was for people passionate about food . . .

                                                                                                                                            1. re: alwayscooking

                                                                                                                                              Passion for food shouldn't take precedence over passion for social interaction. I don't care if I'm eating cheez whiz over ramen noodles if it means that I get to share a good time with my friends.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: alwayscooking

                                                                                                                                                I think I would agree to that this "site" is primarily about people passionate about food. Chow has decided to expand the format to allow for "Not About Food" topics, if you will note at the top of the page. That allows for the "Ask a Chowhound Shrink" type questions. I've seen so many of these threads and they often boil down to dynamics between family and friends and have little to do with food.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: alwayscooking

                                                                                                                                                  This site is for people passionate about food. So yes, we can discuss endlessly which cheese we would prefer and the variations in our sauce and meatball recipes.

                                                                                                                                                  I am not as sure this site is for venting about all the poor slobs who do not share our rarefied tastes.

                                                                                                                                                  And agreed also with comments from jgg13 and Scargod (so many questions that are better saved for an advice columnist or shrink, it's hard to hold my fingers/tongue when reading those threads).

                                                                                                                                              2. re: alwayscooking

                                                                                                                                                "PS A good parm reg can last a very very long time properly stored."

                                                                                                                                                That's kind of missing my point. I keep all sorts of things as low brow backups that are perfectly fine if I don't have something better around, because they tend to keep forever, are relatively cheap (that's why they're low brow) and sometimes I just don't care.

                                                                                                                                                Specific to cheese though, when I have it it tends to get eaten because I like it. Then I have to remember to get more, which I generally don't do unless I need it. Sometimes something will come up where I just whip some stuff together and it doesn't really matter enough to me to worry about it. Problem solved, the green can is sitting there.

                                                                                                                                            2. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                              When we were kids, we used to take slices of Wonder bread, butter them up, sprinkle with said "canned" cheese and pop it under the broiler.... hmmmm Stinky Bread!!!

                                                                                                                                          3. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                            Remember I didn't prefer it, they did. Maybe how they grew up and limited food experiences. They prefer it really. I put out fresh and they demand dried. They tried fresh and still want the dried. I can't figure it out, I have tried. I just gave up finally.

                                                                                                                                            I even fine grated with the food processor and put it out ... one spoon and they wouldn't eat it. They knew the difference.

                                                                                                                                            Beyond me, I just now give in.

                                                                                                                                          4. re: kchurchill5

                                                                                                                                            I'm like that too, k - would prefer top of the line all the time, but that's not gonna happen.
                                                                                                                                            One of the thrills of my life is that I've visited 6 continents and eaten all kinds of food while there - even street food. Never had a sick moment from it, either. We just have to lighten up sometimes, I guess.

                                                                                                                                          5. Sorry, green can user here. For awhile I indulged in the expensive, grate it youreself kinds (usually Regianno, sometimes something cheaper) and I just didn't think it made some wowie-zowie giant difference, it's just something I sprinkle on my pasta for a cheese taste, so I went back to the can, which, as someone else pointed out, IS REAL CHEESE. the can doesn't mold in my fridge or dry up so that next time I go to use it, since I have pasta kind of rarely, it's dead and I am completely without, and it makes great filler in some casseroles that I make. I even put it on my homemade sauce and meatballs. I mean, if you're such a purist, do you make the noodles for your spaghetti? In some foodie's views, if you don't, you're cheating. Do you use canned tomatoes as part of your sauce base? Cheater. Everyone has their own definition of what's an acceptable "cheat" and for many people, especially in this economy, it includes the green can. I could probably buy 100 green cans for one block of reggiano.

                                                                                                                                            For cheese I sit and eat separately with crackers or wine, sure, I try to buy nicer cheese. But for something I just grate on my pasta, it's just not worth the expense to me.

                                                                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                                                                            1. re: rockandroller1

                                                                                                                                              A clear strong voice is heard from the wilderness - from the one marching to the different drum! Although I prefer and splurge on Pec Romano and Parm Reg, I applaud your dissent.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                                                                                                                                                thanks Sam. Almost every one of us has some kind of shortcut or cheapie substitute and I think the OP was being snobby and unkind. They are the ones who changed the whole nature of the dinner and then when the last little detail wasn't to their liking, they come on here in horror looking for support. I mean, have a little kindness.

                                                                                                                                              2. re: rockandroller1

                                                                                                                                                I tend to agree. If you don't make pasta that often, does it really make sense to buy the more expensive kinds? In some families it may be that they don't use cheese at all and just have it on hand in case a guest wants it. I see it as being more akin to instant coffee. It's probably not going to be something a regular coffee drinker would buy, but not so unheard of for someone who drinks it too rarely to buy a coffee maker and just wants some on hand to serve guests.

                                                                                                                                              3. I am suprised nobody has said this yet but you are the one in the wrong. I would be totally shocked if I invited a friend over for pizza and they turned my invitation for pizza into an invitation for dinner including thier homemade meatballs and sauce. They now have to boil water and cook pasta, plus fix a salad to accomodate your meatballs. They also have to use plates and do dishes. Personally, I would never use the canned stuff but to each his own.

                                                                                                                                                8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                1. re: edbk

                                                                                                                                                  I think you hit the nail on the head... said friend, who was probably tired or just plain didn't feel like doing much work now has to boil pasta (heaven forbid that she leave it sitting there for a while so she should cook it to order... not to mention cooking it al dente; think of the things she'll say if it was a little mushy???), make a salad (I don't normaly store salads at home so I'd have to walk out to the store to get salad), set up cutlery, and clean everything afterwards! So much for a lazy evening shooting the breeze with a friend.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Blueicus

                                                                                                                                                    if this counts at all - i ended up bringing the salad too and boiling the pasta for us! I even washed the pot that I boiled the pasta in

                                                                                                                                                    I admit - she did load the dishwasher

                                                                                                                                                    And put the green can back in the fridge......

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                                                      LOL Chic!

                                                                                                                                                      I bet you didn't count on getting so beat up about this!
                                                                                                                                                      But, I feel for you...I don't like the green can either!

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                                                        Boy, you certainly are cool under fire!

                                                                                                                                                        In the end you should have just had her over to your house. You did all the food, washed the pot - you could've used your cheese at home, saved gas, and had a great time.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                                                                                                                                                          Agreed and if she invited you over for pizza you can choose to go over there for pizza or decline her offer and then invite her over for meatballs. I personally love pizza and don't care for meatballs, I would have been pretty peeved.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                                                                                                                                                            We did have a GREAT time - which I left out of the original post - believe me - this wasn't an earth shattering or life altering moment for me. It was scary to be faced with the evil green can, but I overcame my fear.....

                                                                                                                                                            I was really just curious what other people would do when faced with the green can challenge. Do you say something or not?

                                                                                                                                                            And as much as I can accept people and their likes/dislikes I'd still like to convert all of the green canners.....it seems I'll have to take it on as a life mission now.

                                                                                                                                                            Wonder if I can get some of economic stimulus money for my mission.....

                                                                                                                                                            OH - and the reason we were at her house is because her house is like 5x the size of mine and has a 10 year old son - easier for me to pack the goody bags and go.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                                                              I think you're pretty damned lucky if this is as big as it gets for you.
                                                                                                                                                              How about just saying 'thankyou' when she asked you over for pizza?

                                                                                                                                                      2. re: edbk

                                                                                                                                                        Absolutely right edbk. It's not like OP went out of her way to make a special dinner for her friend, she "happened to have a stock pile of homemade sauce and meatballs which I was going to freeze".

                                                                                                                                                        Enjoy the company and keep your mouth shut (except to eat of course)

                                                                                                                                                      3. No way you should have said anything about that. And from what I gather, you didn't.

                                                                                                                                                        Quietly kick yourself for not stopping at the store, and then show up and enjoy a meal with your friend, green can and all.

                                                                                                                                                        Then, come to this website and vent to like-minded people, if you must.

                                                                                                                                                        Which is exactly what you did.

                                                                                                                                                        Of course the real cheese is better. But, I have to admit, the green can ain't all that bad.

                                                                                                                                                        1. You set yourself up.

                                                                                                                                                          When you had this conversation:

                                                                                                                                                          "she: "what did you forget"
                                                                                                                                                          me: "the cheese"
                                                                                                                                                          she: "i have cheese - parmesan, don't worry about it"
                                                                                                                                                          me somewhat hesitantly: :Reeaal parmesan?"
                                                                                                                                                          she: "yeah - just come on over""

                                                                                                                                                          You knew she quite likely didn't have a hunk of real parmesan in her fridge.

                                                                                                                                                          1. Hey, babe, she had Kraft parmesan for your leftover meatballs and sauce. I would call it a tie. If you need to descend from your pedestal...I suggest a parasail because ladders won't reach.

                                                                                                                                                            1. I think everyone has their "green can," even if it's not literally the green can. (And actually, the green can doesn't bother me. We're Chinese, so the less real cheese the better...)

                                                                                                                                                              At a party I had a while ago, a friend of mine insisted she bring the dessert. What arrived was this lumpy misshapen thing from a box mix with FROSTING FROM A CAN! I will leave the inner horror roiling underneath my calm and gracious exterior to your imagination.

                                                                                                                                                              But on the other hand, two Christmases ago a guest asked about whipped cream to go with the gingerbread cake which I had baked from scratch. I could see his face fall when I got the can of whipped cream from the refrigerator. So this year, I asked a friend to bring fresh-whipped cream to go with the cake. (I don' t have a mixer to make from scratch myself).

                                                                                                                                                              Ironically, the friend who brought the "real" whipped cream was the same one who served frosting from a can, so you never know what a "convenience" item and what is someone's GREEN CAN. At the end of the day, it's just one of those things you chalk up to everyone's funny quirks.

                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                              1. re: sidwich

                                                                                                                                                                I like your idea that everyone has their "green can". So true. It might not mean anything to anyone else, but it does throw you for a loop, even though you really like the person involved. How vulnerable we are -- at my last birthday someone brought me a junkfood cake -- I hate, I hate, I hate, much, much, much too sweet, not the kind of dessert I eat. I felt like crying, I couldn't help feeling like this, I felt a bit sad for a while, both at the party and afterwards. That was my "green can". Thanks for listening.

                                                                                                                                                              2. yeah - this is not a big deal. i wouldn't even bring it up b/c why demean her or make her feel inadequate to your *better* taste. in fact, some people like processed better than fresh - so maybe that's just her thing.

                                                                                                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                1. re: bu dat

                                                                                                                                                                  I, too, grew up with that Green Can, and confess that I keep some of the grated version in the fridge -- its an ingredient in my meatballs that really gives them a punch. But for serving with pasta, only a chunk of "real" parm (or romano) will do, preferably shaved of freshly grated at the table. Had I been in the OP's position, I probably would have just stopped at the store (wihout calling ahead) for a hunk of "real" cheese and possibly a grater, since the hostess in question might not have that, either. Life is too short to eat bad cheese. As far as Velveeta is concerned, anything that has to be labeled "cheese food" is probably neither of those two things.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Cheflambo

                                                                                                                                                                    i think life is too short to insult a friend and complicate a night when you've simply been invited over for some pizza. i mean - seriously. just go, eat pizza with people and then when you're drooling over your exquisite meatballs alone - but with the "right" cheese - wonder if you're having as much fun.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: bu dat

                                                                                                                                                                      OP would probably feel very righteous and think yes, yes I am having a better time!

                                                                                                                                                                2. You should let it go because the person you are angry with (disappointed by) is YOU. Leave that poor woman alone. She doesn't get it. She's not giving your food the "props" that you think are deserved. You're feeling slighted. That does sound disappointed but in the scheme of things it's really no big deal. She was eager to see you and/or eat and she didn't want the delay of your getting fresh cheese. (I personally would have waited for the real deal!!)

                                                                                                                                                                  At your house, you'll do it your way. Only you will know if she's going to be insulted if you buy her fresh cheese and grater -- if she will love it, then go for it. If not, then just let it go.

                                                                                                                                                                  7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Bite Me

                                                                                                                                                                    The green can isn't just a poor substitute, it's its own foodstuff. It has a weird funky sour taste that some people are accustomed to and I dare say addicted to. It's a little like Hershey's milk chocolate with its burned-milk taste. Europeans can't understand why we eat it, but to a lot of us in the US chocolate is supposed to taste that way. As a kid, I thought I hated cheese because most people I knew served the dried Kraft or other processed cheese that all tasted like baby vomit to me. That is probably part of the flavor profile of a lot of cheeses but with those ones it's obnoxious. To me-- to other people it's a salty yummy flavor.

                                                                                                                                                                    Anyway, attempting to educate people about food is risky and trying to educate them out of their comfort foods is more so. On

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: bibi rose

                                                                                                                                                                      But of course.
                                                                                                                                                                      Sometimes the question must be asked. What is worse, the pretentious know-it-all about food or the green can.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: latindancer

                                                                                                                                                                        I think it's not a good idea for chicaraleigh to buy cheese, garlic, and grater for her friend. Her friend has her own system going on within her family -- it may be more important to sit down together for a meal with the green can and garlic powder than to spend more time getting things perfect.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: latindancer

                                                                                                                                                                          And that begs the question of how many try to look "not guilty" on these boards while they have them both in their refrigerator? I just added Kraft Singles to my shopping list simply because cheddar or swiss won't stay melted in a cheese sandwich for the length of time it takes me to eat the whole thing. Kraft Singles make great cheese sandwiches with a container of Campbell's Soup At Hand Creamy Tomato!

                                                                                                                                                                          As for the green can, I don't currently have one, but I do need to pick up a small one. When I was a kid, my Irish born mother would make tacos with seasoned hamburger and Kraft Parmesan for the cheese. She's been gone for a while now, but when I want to resurrect her as young as she was when I was young, nothing does it better than her really crappy tacos with Kraft Parmesan as the cheese. <sigh>

                                                                                                                                                                          Food is a lot more than what comes from the ground, or bleeds. Food is often a from of magic capable of conjuring up the past. If it takes a green can to do it, nothing wrong with that!

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Caroline1

                                                                                                                                                                            So true so true, I have kraft singles too. I often make a fried egg sandwich for breakfast when I leave early cuz I don't get to have lunch so I love something hearty but it may take 30 minutes by the time I finish. It melts well. Most times I don't eat it but I totally agree.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Caroline1

                                                                                                                                                                              Often like a magic carpet, too. Every time I go to this place on the ocean I am immediately taken back to the coast of Spain and one particular place and meal. Deja Vu.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Caroline1

                                                                                                                                                                                That's beautiful, Caroline. Thanks for sharing. And you're so right. There are just some things that mean more than the ingredients.

                                                                                                                                                                        2. I saw this post when it had only one reply. I am really surprised that it has garnered so many replies. You say nothing, you don't bring "real" cheese the next time. You eat the pizza that she suggested ordering. You know that, chicaraleigh :) I think you ARE venting. Maybe there's something else that you're not even aware of. And, as others have mentioned, you can teach by example at YOUR house. I love your posts otherwise :) Keep 'em coming.

                                                                                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                            I may suggest to her what she should have and try to teach her, but each his or her own. I wouldn't admit that the green can was fresh, I would be honest and say I have the green can stuff but I don't have fresh, but maybe she thinks that is, obviously she does. I would just tactfully mention to here that she couldn't get alot of good fresh cheese for not much more and you tend to use less fresh than canned and it is so much better. She just may not now. I still would never say anything. I would make sure I mentioned it after dinner and made it part of a conversation so it didn't seem obvious.

                                                                                                                                                                            To me my friendship is more than food. If it was unconfortable to mention I just let it go ... not worth it. Many of my friends think Kraft Mac and cheese is jt!! Others are gourmet. So I just blend them all. Probably why I sometimes have parties that have a mix. If I did all top gourmet foods for appetizers and dinner 1/2 my guests would not eat ... honestly. They are not adventurous, wouldn't even try. I know them. The other half, they try everything. So know your guests. Don't try to impress just some, impress them all. And if it means that green can or velveeta ... by all means it will be at my party. I'm entertaining my guests not food critics. I just want everyone to be happy when I cook and it if is cheeze wiz on a cracker, so be it.

                                                                                                                                                                          2. On some threads people wax quixotic over the blue box mac & cheese on others they shun the green can. We need to get lives folks. We raised 5 kids on a lot of generic green can and lot of doctored jarred sauce, a lot dry pasta and some wicked good meat balls and very occasionally on the fine grated Reggio. I'm sure nobody remembers which was which.
                                                                                                                                                                            Cherish people, not the brand.

                                                                                                                                                                            13 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                                                                                                                              I owe you breakfast for summing it up so beautifully. I've had dinner parties that were take and bake pizza along with their salad and jug wine. Moving-in boxes piled high. And those are the dinners that I sometimes remember the best and most. People coming together. Thanks, P

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                                                                                                                                Oh Pass, you sweet ol' cabron! Come on over and we'll toast some marshmallows...

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Scargod

                                                                                                                                                                                  Naw, pasta carbonara, w. boxes sphagets, cheap bacon, and the green box. Carlo Rossi Chablis too. Back to our sixties roots. Or maybe a jug of Almaden Chablis?

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                                                                                                                                    I could do it... Chab Liss? Ripple? Rice-a-roni and bacon! Twinkies for dessert. Screamin' zonkers for entertainment...

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Scargod

                                                                                                                                                                                      Frozen onion rings, chile dogs, frito pies and Pearl Beer, no scratch that one, Live Oak Ale or Bar Harbor Ale? Christ! I'm a beer snob! "Life's too short to drink cheap beer". Chile snob too. At least I choose my snobisms and they are pretty low brow. But no chin food, even Uno Pizza.

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                                                                                                                                      Almeden Chablis, mom mom and dad have a bottle right now, lol

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: kchurchill5

                                                                                                                                                                                      Thanks. Life's short, do what you think is right, not cool and you have few regrets.

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                                                                                                                                        My dad used to save "good bottles". He'd buy jug wine & use it to fill those other bottles. For company, he might start out with a real bottle of what he considered the good stuff, then bring out the bogus bottles after everyone had drunk a glass or two. With family, it was jug wine (fondly known as Dad's rot gut) from the get-go. We still keep a box of wine on the ledge over the counter between my kitchen & family room. A glass fits very nicely underneath, and it's very convenient for everyday use.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: PattiCakes

                                                                                                                                                                                          Been there, done......

                                                                                                                                                                                          We have been known to smuggle in Nalgenes of box wine into outdoor concerts.

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                                                                                                                                      Nah, no biggie.

                                                                                                                                                                                      Jfood had a personal chef growing up. You may know her. Mrs Swanson. And the her cousin moved into the neighborhood, you may know him too, Colonel Sanders. And Mac and cheese was mac, milk and velveeta. And jfood thought it was very cool to fry some frozen breaded fried shrimp. Let's not forget Celentano ravioli, stauffer's frozen pizza,

                                                                                                                                                                                      Now he tries to give better food advice to the kids. One wants to go back to school for a MS in Nutrition. Proud Pop there.

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: jfood

                                                                                                                                                                                        Ooooh....that frozen breaded fried shrimp....I used to enjoy it back in those days before I knew how to cook.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: neverlate

                                                                                                                                                                                          All the later posts made me really hungry, so I made myself a grilled spam and american cheese sandwich on wonder bread with miracle whip and french's yellow mustard!

                                                                                                                                                                                    3. OK... I can't take it any more! I CONFESS!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                      What's the only thing worse than a can of the green stuff?
                                                                                                                                                                                      A MASSIVE GALLON JUG OF THE GREEN STUFF!!!
                                                                                                                                                                                      (Sour cream included for scale, only)

                                                                                                                                                                                      I feel so ashamed... I work my arse off to make great sauce, then I do this...

                                                                                                                                                                                      I have been inspired to go for the parm regg today (I have the grater).

                                                                                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                                                                      6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: woodburner

                                                                                                                                                                                        I see you're inspired (so I'm not worrying about you slitting your wrists)!
                                                                                                                                                                                        Try keeping a chunk in a grater, like so... http://www.akitchen.com/store/cheese-...

                                                                                                                                                                                        You can even put it in a zip-lock and whip it out at will. Very little effort.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Scargod

                                                                                                                                                                                          Like this Scargod?
                                                                                                                                                                                          http://www.accidentalhedonist.com/ind...

                                                                                                                                                                                          Kraft thinks of EVERYTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Boccone Dolce

                                                                                                                                                                                            I guess this flopped? (the article was from 2006)
                                                                                                                                                                                            I've never seen it; not that I would be looking for it...
                                                                                                                                                                                            There is the inference that this IS better than their already grated stuff.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Boccone Dolce

                                                                                                                                                                                              Gee Boccone, wonder what gave you the idea to post that??
                                                                                                                                                                                              See my earlier post below :-P

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: woodburner

                                                                                                                                                                                            OMG, I nearly spit out my drink looking at that picture! You are my hero! I'm not afraid to admit I am a green can user. Don't get me wrong, I love good cheese, but I live alone and don't eat pasta that often-I can't stand to see food go to waste.

                                                                                                                                                                                            I say fuggedabout the whole thing. When you're at her house, eat what she has cooked/suggested. You can always invite her over and then do it your way.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: woodburner

                                                                                                                                                                                              LMAO!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                              SO FUNNY!

                                                                                                                                                                                              I am glad you admitted your problem, now you can face it, and overcome!
                                                                                                                                                                                              Believe me, you will never go back!

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. While I feel your pain, I think I would have accepted the "green can o' stuff," and made do. During the meal, I would have turned the topic to great cheeses, and would have offered to drop some off, for friend to try. Maybe even suggest a cheese and wine tasting. You could even throw in some nice olive oils, and balsamic vinegars. She (the friend) possibly has never experienced the "good stuff." Use this as an opening to introduce her to it. It is likely that next time, there will be no "green can of stuff" in the 'fridge.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Your next to last line is the key. Go with that and you will have done good. She might not "get it for a bit, but with exposure and training, she will.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Hunt

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Something to make Everybody happy!! It's real, and it's grated fresh.

                                                                                                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                                                                                1. I'd have to agree with akg. She was nice enough to invite you over. Maybe you should have just gone with the pizza that she suggested. I would never insult the hostess about the green can! I know many people who use that to this day and think it's fantastic...they also think entenman's cakes are the best cakes in the world! When I am a guest in someone's home, I eat whatever is offered. BTW, I did offer a gal at the office personally grated Parmesan Regianno. She thought it tasted just like her green can -- go figure.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Get over it. Stop being such a food snob. Supposedly she's a friend of yours.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    26 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Jacey

                                                                                                                                                                                                      This post is starting to strike a nerve with me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I am middle-aged, I have lived abroad, traveled a bit, dined in many many wonderful restaurants - from hole in the walls to Michelin starred places, and I am a rustic home cook.
                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm pretty new to the Chowhound community, and I was so excited to join because I thought I might be able to exchange ideas, opinions, recipes and experiences with some like minded food obssessed people, such as myself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Early on, however I noticed a heck of allot of food snobbery, allot of name-dropping etc. going on in the posts, I was quite disappointed, since that's not my thing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Well all throughout this post - we see the poor OP is being accused of being a "food snob"!!!
                                                                                                                                                                                                      HA!
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Anyone that consumes food - should know that the "little green can " is GROSS -let's face it!
                                                                                                                                                                                                      I am shocked that anyone a part of the Chowhound Community would question this!

                                                                                                                                                                                                      If the OP had been referring to a jarred pasta sauce - wouldn't we all be in agreement that this is a CH no-no? wouldn't we all be as shocked and appalled as the OP was over the can?
                                                                                                                                                                                                      So why all the accusations of "food snob"???
                                                                                                                                                                                                      When in fact allot of us in the CH community ARE food snobs???

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I also have to add that the OP was just venting... and I'm sure exagerrating her "shock" just a bit for affect.
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Lighten up! She never insulted her host, or anything of the sort. I am sure they are still good friends.
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Rant over!
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Thanks!

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Actually I think the jarred sauce debate comes around fairly regularly too. There's no consensus.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: bibi rose

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Really my word!
                                                                                                                                                                                                          So the Chowhound community is not all that it would like to think it is then! IMHO

                                                                                                                                                                                                          (Don't take my comments so seriously - I exagerate my disgust! I could care less what floats anyones boat!)

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                                                                                            You're going to find all levels of foodie-dom here.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I just posted on a topic where people were listing their favorite sugar-coated breakfast cereals and said I thought the subject of 'favorite sugar cereal' was an oxymoron on a chow board. Not for the people posting there!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Fortunately (or unfortunately...depending) for me I have a very wide level of acceptance for things food. I'll eat lunch at Carl's Jr. then go home and make Shabu Shabu on a butane burner in an authentic Japanese Shabu Shabu pot. I'll also get into very long posts here about the comparison between hand-cut and machine cut pastrami, then use the dreaded green-can Parmesan if I need to for some reason.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            It's not that I don't know and appreciate the difference. It's more like I definitely prefer one but don't get all crazy about the other. If I like it I'll eat it....... or at least not fret about it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Midlife

                                                                                                                                                                                                              LOL - I was one of those who posted!
                                                                                                                                                                                                              IMO there's nothing better than good ole Capt'n Crunch!

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                                                                                                And we usually on weeknights use the green can a lot (or the blue one) but, never, never, never eat chocolate covered sugar bombs. Different strokes, a lot.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  What's that I feel tugging on my leg???

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Unless, of course, you're not the same NellyNel who posted:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  "Anyone that consumes food - should know that the "little green can " is GROSS -let's face it!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I am shocked that anyone a part of the Chowhound Community would question this!"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Yes, it's gross....... but I'm not above sprinkling some on my pasta in a pinch. Actually I'll do almost anything to avoid using this stuff, but I do understand those that use it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Capt'n Crunch - The Foodsnob's Favorite !!! ;o)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The little green can is non-chowish.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Jarred pasta sauce is non-chowish.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Captain Crunch is just fine.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I think you have a credibility problem.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      So is it correct to say you don't like food snobbery but you, considering yourself a Chowhound, think the green can is gross and all jarred pasta sauce is a no-no yet you think Captain Crunch is the best?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Um...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: latindancer

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Wow!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I think it was pretty clear that I added that bit about the Cap't Crunch for the irony, and to poke fun at myself! So the above comments are completely redundant!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The post was very clear.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Perhaps it's your intention that's unclear.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: latindancer

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Sorry?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            What do you mean?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The intent was to make people laugh!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            After a rant bout how gross the green can is - but I love Capt'n Crunch

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I was poking fun at myself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Problem solved! Top the pasta and meatballs with Cap'n Crunch and fuggeddibout the green can and the grated parm from Italy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Actually discussing sugary cereals to me is a bit disgusting. I wish this thread hadn't been cross-contaminated. Like you cutting up your chicken on my vegetable board.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                What? You don't like Sugar Coated Chocolate Bombs? Next trip the the States buy some Calvin & Hobbs comic books, your daughter will lover them. You will become the Nagon King and she the Booger Being!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Don't let the crushing mandables of death give you an atomic wedgie!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Calvin

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Can't. Dana Zsofia doesn't speak or read English. Fortunately, our local papers have Calvin & Hobbs - in Spanish. I hope she will like C&H - now that she's starting to learn how to read.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                                                                                                It's not the green container that people are supporting, it's friendship. If your good friend likes the little green container, or Capt Crunch cereal for that matter, does that lessen your friendship? Looking down on your friends doesn't make for good friendship.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: chowser

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I agree- the question wasn't about whether or not the green can is gross (to most, it probably is). It was about whether or not it should be upsetting that a friend doesn't realize it isn't real parmesan. Thats why it's posted in NOT ABOUT FOOD. It's not about the food. Its about whether or not the OP was justified in reacting the way she did to the social situation.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I think it's a shame that there is even a debate going on about what it means to be "chow." Chow "no-nos" are so lame anyway. It just makes some people feel good to put other people down behind the protection of a computer. This is a site for people who LIKE FOOD. If a person really likes junk food, or maybe they can only afford the dreaded green can, or they live to eat pasta but don't have time to make homemade sauce all the time and prefer the best jar if it money can buy--- they aren't any less chow than anyone else. If you think they are, then I feel sorry for you.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: CoryKatherine

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wow, where did you come from??? I haven't read your posts before but you hit the nail(s) on the head from my point of view. Thanks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      lol i'm the girl getting railed in the food network thread for preferring to be "entertained" while i learn (from alton brown) rather than be "really educated" some of the more sophisticated (dry) television foodies

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: CoryKatherine

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        You have a more fatalistic view than I do. To me, disagreements aren't "being railed" (being railed is the poor OP here). They're part of what makes CH go around. And not loving someone doesn't make him/her a hater. I don't consider you a Jacques Pepin "hater".:-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: chowser

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          lol WOW I never even said anything about Jacques Pepin except maybe that he was a highly skilled chef and less of an entertainer. As it happens, I watch him and enjoy it so that is silly. I haven't done anything but defend my guy against the slew of insulting comments ;)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Also I think maybe you're taking my term "hater" a little too literally. I don't know anything about you, but in my age group and region it's a very loosely-used term. For example, last night I told my boyfriend to stop being a hater when he started complaining about the wheat bread again. He doesn't hate wheat bread. He likes wheat bread. He was just hating on it because he prefers his mom's wonder bread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: CoryKatherine

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            LOL, but you called people haters because we said Alton Brown was more of an entertainer than a highly skilled chef. The term "hater" probably has different definitions out there. I've thought of it as meaning people who dislike something for no good reason, just to dislike it. I've heard it used derogatorily, that dismisses any legtimate concern/reasons eg, if I said I didn't like the Jonas Brothers and didn't think it was great music, I'd be told I was a hater because they're amazing. It could be an age/regional thing but then I'd never use hater so I'm probably an old fogey.;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: chowser

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I think when i said hater i was actually referring to whoever called Alton Brown "pedestrian." I was outraged! What a demeaning term. Lol.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              But I see your point about the usage of the term and I can assure you I will tread more carefully from now on ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I keep jarred pasta sauce on hand without apology....no-no or not. And I believe there is a difference in appreciation of food and love of food and being a food snob or elitest.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: NellyNel

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Me three - several of 'em. And once in a while I'll even use one without doctoring it up first.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. I never realized what a Pandora's box I was creating with a simple "who moved my cheese" kind of question....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Of course some of my OP was designed to be some what titillating, of course I haven't stopped being friends with her, of course I am not a food "snob", in fact - I'm probably the furthest thing from a food snob. Did you read my post post about the dill pickle/ham/swiss cheese treat that I'm fond of?!? ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Rarely will you find me suggesting a fancy restaurant or criticizing anyone's predilection for a certain food stuff, food family, style of cooking, etc. I'm the one suggesting we go to the taquieria with the great carne asada or the Korean spot that just opened up or the Turkish place with the best kofte I've had this side of Istanbul. Or a meat and 3 spot or the bbq joint that's a hours drive but has the best eastern style cue I've ever dipped a hush puppy into.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm open to all sorts of "low-brow" (not my word!) foods as long as it tastes good. I truly believe that MOST food that is prepared with love is going to taste good. Sure, maybe not like my Mom or Grandma or I would make it - but I'm open to the nuances of experiencing old familiars in new ways. Or new foods entirely.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Essentially, isn't that the essence of what we all strive for? To open minds and expand horizons (both ours and others) when it comes to food & all things food related?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                If I'm invited to someone's home, or restaurant or whatever; I eat what is given to me with no complaint (at least not to the host!). I've consumed some God awful stuff over the years but I've always managed to walk out with my head high. Well, there was that one time that the honeycomb tripe sent me running to the bathroom.....It's a texture thing!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I have to say that I do find it rather amusing that my post has relegated me to be viewed as a neurotic, despotic cheese & leftover wielding food Nazi - ready to take on the world one pizza joint at a time - LOL ....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                It really wasn't that way at all!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Sure there was an invite for pizza (followed by a "hey, would you mind stopping by to grab it since you have to drive by the pizza shop to get here").

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Sure, I brought pre-prepped food - but they weren't left overs. It was a fresh batch of sauce and meatballs that I cooked up for the express purpose of freezing for meals later in the week, month, year, what ever.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Sure, I was personally horrified by the green can - but I kept my trap shut....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Sure, I learned a valuable lesson - REMEMBER THE CHEESE, STUPID!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm hoping that I can clear the air on the perception that I'm a terrible person or that I was being rude...that was never my intent, my question was "do I bring up the cheese thing or just let ride" BTW - I got the answer loud and clear.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                With that being said, here are a few things that I offer for consideration. My intent is not to beat a dead horse but to shed some additional light on this particular situation....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                My friends call me when they need ideas for dinner, or their potatoes or gravy turn out lumpy or they want the low down on the Chinese place that opened up. Why? Not because I'm a food snob, not because I'm an authority on all things food....it's because they know I love and appreciate food in its many many forms.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Remember the plea for help for the 70's appetizers...that was for said friend's party - she asked "hey - can you please come up with some 70's inspired apps?" (Thank you again for all the ideas!)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Thanksgiving last year - "Would you mind bringing the turkey & gravy because I know I'll eff it up"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                They know that I spend hours every week thinking, reading, learning and talking about, and most importantly - eating food. They know that I come to CH for inspiration, ideas, introductions to new food things and camaraderie from individuals who share my passion for food.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                They know that if we're going out of town I'll already have a line on some highly recommended places to eat (thanks for the recs!)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Just like they know if we're going out of town, I'll slip off to check out the local farmers market or grocery or some unique cheese shop or some other crazy food related adventure. They know if we're hanging out some where, I'm going to be checking out the locals, introducing ourselves, finding the spots where the locals go.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                They also know to leave extra room in the trunk for whatever goodies I'll be hauling back....Just like I know I have to save room for all of their shopping bags of shoes, handbags and clothes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                They know they can call me on a Sunday night or Monday evening and ask "what's for dinner" because they know that I've cooked up a big batch of something over the weekend.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                For me, one of the greatest joys that I have in life is when I put passion and love into a dish and someone says "that was damn good, what was in it?". I love it even more when I can tell them about some strange (read...different or new) ingredient that they weren't expecting, had never heard of, were afraid to try, didn't understand WHY or HOW fresh could be better than processed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I think if everyone would take a step back and really think about - isn't that what we all really want? To share in the things that bring us joy or happiness?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                And let's face - haven't we all waxed poetic over bagged lettuce, instant couscous, pre-bagged teas, horrible - but sometimes yummy - processed foods, which coffee is best, the pros & cons of velveeta, fresh versus dried pasta, good wine - bad wine, good hot sauce versus bad hot sauce, ketchup on hot dogs, what real BBQ is, the best store bought stock.....I mean, the list goes on and on. It's what makes us who we are...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I appreciate all the time and effort that you folks have put into to providing some guidance - as I've stated before - I didn't intend for this to come across as the biggest crisis I have had this year (or hell, this lifetime) nor did I anticipate all the feedback (both good and bad) that this post created but I do thank you again for setting me straight on what to do about the cheese ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                14 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That'll teach you not to get into a game of telephone here!!!! :o) Some of these topics just develop a life of their own.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I think you've missed the most basic critique here: If you're invited for delivery pizza, you don't offer to bring your oh-so-wonderful, made from scratch meatballs. Go eat the pie that your friend is graciously inviting you to share and leave the upscale stuff for entertaining in your own home. (And screw the cheese.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: pikawicca

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Believe when I say I am NOT missing the basic critique but what I think a lot of people missed was the premise of the invitation. Secondly, a key point missed, though I tried with obviously no success - to explain my friendship with PW ---pizza woman--- and our friendship when it comes to food. Lastly, I think what was missed by many was the basic question I asked.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Let's for a moment take the pizza/invite thing out of the equation for the following reasons:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1) it was an invite to come on over, pizza was a suggestion. Food is rarely at the top of her agenda - pizza is a stand by for their family, a simple "fill in the blank" food when queried "What's for dinner"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2) I was asked if I could stop by the pizza shop to pick up (and presumably pay) for the pizza
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3) I offered an alternative which she was thrilled with as she is one of those people that happens to like my cooking (bless her heart!) and often calls me to say "hey, what did you cook over the weekend - can I have some?"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      So, with the pizza/invite issue on the table for now, let's think about this...you're asked to bring a dish to a party. There is some key ingredient that really makes this dish work. You forget to grab the key ingredient. You make a courtesy call letting host know you're going to be a few MINUTES, not 15 or 30, but a few, because you have to stop at the store.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Host says, "don't worry, I have that on hand". So, what do you do when you get there and their version is simply just not what you needed, wanted or expected? Maybe it's a fresh herb and you get handed dry herbs, maybe it's fresh tomato and you get handed sun-dried, maybe it's fresh cracked pepper and you get the canned ground stuff. Maybe you need balsamic and you get handed red wine vinegar?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The question I was trying to get an answer for is would you try to enlighten them on why your preferred food type is potentiallh better or do you just ride it out. Again, I'm hoping to eliminate the emphasis on the pizza/invite topic

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        You do not enlighten. You ride it out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          It was nice of you to offer to bring your food and share and it sounds like you have that type of friendship. I agree w/ c oliver, though, that you ride it out. People have on hand what they enjoy and I'd be bothered if someone came to my house and complained that my coffee wasn't adequate. Coffee from a store, ugh, to go with a home made dessert? Maybe the person might have expected home roasted coffee or coffee from a better purveyor? Oh well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: chowser

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            This thread has served a purpose for me (even though this isn't the first of its type). We have neighbors who will have a little neighborhood gettogether maybe once a year. They ALWAYS serve margaritas. I don't actively dislike margaritas but I never want more than one and really don't want one. So i've tended in the past to bring a little flask with vodka (my drink of choice) in it. I'm not going to do that any more. I'm going to drink that drink (blended at that which I really don't like), smack my lips and say thank you so much. It won't kill me. So thanks for bringing this up (yet again). You changed one set of stripes, OP, but perhaps not in the way you originally imagined :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              This thread has made me wonder if I've ever offended people w/ my selection of food at home. I serve chocolate chip cookies but rarely use plugra butter or valrhona chocolate. I don't roast my own coffee and only occasionally have locally roasted coffee (though I happen to right now). Maybe my wine is inadequate, maybe they hate my choice of EVOO. Where does it end? Good thing I'm not neurotic. As I said to my family when I served tofurkey, "It's dinner. Eat."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: chowser

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Well I think "offended" is a really strong word...I think you'd have to be insane to be "offended" by a hosts offerings!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                (I immdiately think of my old boss who -when was taken to the theatre as someones guest - was truly offended by the seat he had It wasnt good enough for himself - and he told the poor guy so in front of a whole group of people!!)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Anyhow - perhaps "surprised" is a better word?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                If someone is known to like good food, and then, as a guest in their home you are served a frozen dinner - I would imagine the reaction to be that of surprise - not offense. The strongest reaction might perhaps be "distaste"!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                ...If someone served you store brand catsup - instead of Heinz - you might think to yourself for a moment "Eww"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                But if you know someone well enough to welcome them into your home, one would think that these reactions would have no bearing on the relationship.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                And if it did - well it couldn't be a very strong relationship in the first place.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                If someone really is offended by the lack of valrhona chocolate in you cookies - well who needs 'em?!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I suppose this conversation has come full circle!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        So are you saying you're surprised you've created a mountain out of a molehill both on the board and at your friend's house?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: latindancer

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The "mountain out of the molehill" was created on this board, NOT at her friend's house.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: PattiCakes

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I disagree.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The OP was asked over for pizza. The OP, in turn, turned it into something more elaborate by her own admission.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              When a person turns an otherwise simple gesture into something larger and then complains about it....it's drama.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            It just goes to show you can't be too careful!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: chicaraleigh

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I want to live in your town and get invited over - or invite you, your turkey and gravy over to my place!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Take your lumps and don't forget the cheese next time. It'd be pretty silly to jeopardize a friendship over some second rate cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. You don't happen to live in San Jose, cook great ribs, and be married to a guy who brags about 'em so much that he volunteers you to bring them to other people's backyard BBQs, do you?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Heh!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ricepad

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The ribs tread is like a zombie, just when you think you've heard the last of it it reaches it's arm out of the grave and grabs you!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. I say end the friendship now. The most important thing when choosing your friends is whether or not they use high quality cheese products when dining. I cannot stress this enough.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: MattInNJ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Now YOU really made me laugh_out_loud. Unfortunately I would have enough friends if I did that. I'll look past (and keep my big mouth shut) over the green can, jarred sauce, whatever I'm served. Thanks, Matt

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Edit: Oops, meant to type "wouldn't have enough friends."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: MattInNJ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm so glad you put this in perspective.......no more wondering who to hang out, what to wear, whether or not they pick up their part of the tab, where to go so everyone will be happy, worrying if their SO is a actually a SOB....all I have to do is qualify with a simple question up front:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      "What kind of cheese do you prefer"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      thanks for the big chuckle!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: MattInNJ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "I cannot stress this enough."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I'm totally using that. I agree with c oliver. I laughed out loud.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        MattInNJ for the win.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: MattInNJ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I <3 MattinNJ - I seriously laughed out loud and choked a little.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MattInNJ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            This comment made my day. In fact, I am going to implement a cheese test in all of my relationships.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Hi everyone,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            This thread is getting increasingly personal and judgemental, so we're going to lock it. Please read this link, which was created for just such threads. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/3609...