prairie woman cookin’

pioneer woman

This week MJE finally had enough of dated TV shows and made the switch to the channel of what’s happening now, the Food Network. The line up during my time slot is eclectic, Rachel Ray, the Barefoot Contessa, some buxom bleached blonde chef who talks to her food and of course, teeth and tits Giada. But by far the most compelling character on the roster is the Pioneer Woman. A corn-fed, thirty-something redhead who favors violently patterned clothing, speaks in a baby voice and wears pigtails, without being ironic.

She and her husband Lance (or is it Link) live out on the prairie somewhere with their passel of home-schooled kids. He refers to her as Ma so I’ve never caught her given name. Lance or Link seems to spend all his time trucking cattle from one place to another while Ma keeps the home fires burning and massive quantities of good all American food piled on the table.

Speaking of which, the pioneer woman’s hearty entrees always come with lots of fixin’s. There are no “g’s” in the pioneer woman’s gerunds. She’s always gettin’ something out of the pantry, or choppin’ something, or usin’ what’s on hand because she isn’t goin’ shoppin’ until the end of the week. But bein’ a good prairie cook she always has ample supplies in the basement,  in preparation for the apocalypse no doubt.

The episode I watched involved Ma and her best friend June planning a graduation party for their daughters who have been besties since birth. If a kid is home schooled I’m not sure what graduation means other than you are literally kicked out of the house, but at least Ma and June’s girls got a party before they hit the pavement. And what a shindig!. It had a steer ropin’ game, huge chalk boards for well wishers to write sappy notes to the graduates, a chocolate fountain and a Dixieland band, which seemed a bit off the western theme but way to think outside the box Ma.

The menu was mexamericana snout to tail. Tortilla chips and cheesey dip, tacos, chili (with all the fixin’s of course), and for dessert, rice crispy treats for dippin’ in the chocolate fountain. And boy did ma cook like a madwoman for the do. Frankly MJE thinks June took advantage, but what do I know. Ma made everything from scratch, even the cheesy dip, no Velveeta and Rotel for the prairie cook. And the secret to her rice crispy treats: addin’ mini marshmallows at the end!

The party was a huge success. The girls loved it. And watching the gang trying to line dance to Won’t You Come Home Bill Bailey was worth every minute of MJE’s precious gas chamber time.