Monday, March 11, 2013

"The Quarter of Six Cookbook" (for Daylight Savings Time) - Ginzu Goulash (a/k/a American Chop Suey)

Date I made this recipe:  March 10, 2013 (Daylight Savings Time)

The Quarter Past Six Cookbook by Joanne Lamm
Published by:  Lamm-Morada Publishing Company
© 1982 – ISBN: 0-932128-03-3
Recipe:  Ginzu Goulash – p. 24

Like most Americans, I cannot fathom why on earth we switch to Daylight Savings time, especially since we lose an hour of sleep in the springtime, but it is so and no amount of endless chatting about it on the internet will make it otherwise.  Seriously, I have never seen so many articles on various media websites such as my local paper, CNN or even the HuffingtonPost discuss this topic.  Guess we must all be stuck in the winter doldrums with not much else going on.

Not that this shift to daylight savings time meant that we’d be getting more light in these parts because the view from my computer has looked the same all winter – gray and bleak.  The sun, when it appears to shine its light on us, is a rarity, almost making me question whether or not I am living in some alternate universe like The Twilight Zone.

At any rate, bleak weather aside, of course I had a “time” cookbook at my disposal and 24 pages in, I just had to – and I mean had to – make Ginzu Goulash to usher in Daylight Savings Time.  And I’m telling you right now, you will likely be underwhelmed, nay, even disappointed, for this is no culinary masterpiece but the name itself sold me and when I saw the ingredients for your basic American Chop Suey, there was no going back.

For those of you my age, not only will this recipe for chop suey – the American version – bring back all kinds of memories, but the recipe’s name – Ginzu – had me back in “Ron Popeil” land in about two seconds flat.

You all remember Ron, right?  Ron, the best hawker of cool crap you didn’t even know you needed, was famous for his 1970’s TV commercials in which he told you  “It slices, it dices, Just set it and forget it” and the always popular “But wait, there’s more,” encouraging you to stay tuned to see what extra items came with your product order.  Out of all the TV pitchmen at the time, Ron was the best and although he did not sell the infamous Ginsu knife, he invented, hawked and sold numerous other products under his company, Ronco.  (For all you New York City residents, every time I think of Ron I also think of Crazy Eddie - now THAT guy could sell electronics!)

So Ginzu (note the different spelling!) Goulash it was.  To make this, get out your can opener.  Be prepared for absolutely no flavor.  Serve it over rice because that’s what one does with bean sprouts, water chestnuts and mushrooms, and if you have a chance, get on YouTube to watch Ron’s hilarious commercials and take a trip down memory lane. (Right now I’m watching the commercial for Buttoneer – “a way to put buttons on, pleat drapes…” – hahahahahaha…..)

Ginzu Goulash – no serving size given – “Bring the mysterious East to your dinner table in the form of this sumptuous Chinese goulash.” (Ann’s Note: Chinese goulash???!)
1 pound hamburger meat
One 8-ounce can bean sprouts, drained
One 3-ounce can sliced mushrooms, drained
One 8-ounce can sliced water chestnuts, drained
One 8-ounce can green beans, drained
One 8-ounce can tomato sauce
1 teaspoon onion salt (Ann’s Note:  you can also substitute garlic salt)
2 tablespoons soy sauce

Crumble and brown the hamburger in the skillet.  Drain grease.  Add all well-drained canned items plus onion salt and soy sauce.  Heat and serve.

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