First off allow me to apologize for not uploading anything on the Homeskillet for a while. For days I have been in a dark dark place, a state of mind to rival any of those that have survived war, torture or a Pauly Shore movie marathon on TNT. This horrible condition was completely self induced mind you; I could have gotten out at any time. But when you are in too deep the only way to truly escape is digging deeper until you come out the other end, bruised, bloodied and covered in a layer of thick aerosol cheese.
Was it worth it?, I often ask myself, sometimes weeping gently in the bathtub as I rock back and forth, clutching my knees to my chin, eyes cinched tight as the cat sits on the toilet licking its butt. That is a solid and worthy question. Still raw and trembling from the recent hell trial I put myself through, I find myself whispering gently during regular sleepless nights: Dear God (a.k.a Tony Iommi), I hope so...
The ordeal in focus here happened when I watched one of my favorite chefs, Hugh Acheson (http://hughacheson.com/), cooked a disgusting “meal” from a book I had no idea had made it to print. It was a simple dish, a staple in most American households either as a main course or an appetizer, but one that was inspired by pop culture dreck and then perfected by another flesh wound in the stench arena that is “reality television”.
|Watch it here: http://www.eater.com/2015/5/15/8611479/kris-jenner-nacho-recipe-kardashian-nicole-simpson|
They were nachos. But not just any kind of nachos. Oh no. They were the recipe that a certain Nicole Brown-Simpson (remember that mess from the mid 90s?) loved and passed on to the author of this apparent “cookbook” that was “written” by the matronly star of the why-is-it-so-popular show “Keeping Up with the Kardashians”, Kris Jenner.
Kris Jenner? Kris Jenner wrote a cookbook? Wait...Kris Jenner can cook? Wait...wait...none of this makes sense. How did...? Who thought that...? Wait...what? No man. Kris Jenner does not have a cookbook published. A cookbook? C'mon. You've got to be...
Um, nope. Here it is. “In the Kitchen with Kris” it says. Before I knew what hit me, I had a copy in my hands and, worse yet, in my house! So it was true. There is a cookbook out there with Kris Jenner claiming to be the author and head “cook”. Sure. Why not. I mean if Snooki and J-Woww have books out that tell you how to live your own life (just like them) then why not someone who I thought didn't even know what a garlic press is.
“Is it for squeezing, like, little limes?” I could almost hear one of them speak. That is if I actually caught one of the episodes and not immediately hit the button on my remote trying to remove them from my screen. Still, I've seen enough of the show to get a hint of what it's about. I guess. Does Kris Jenner do a lot of cooking on the show? Yeah. That's what I thought...
But I really wanted to be fair going into reviewing this book. I mean, what if Kris Jenner is an amazing cook? What if she can lay down a souffle smackdown to make Bobby Flay run for cover as he pulls the soulless ginger hair from his head? What if?
So I opened the book to find this dedication:
And this photo:
Then I realized I was actually in for a ride. Not a fun ride, not an educational ride, not a ride where I come out enlightened at the end gleaming “I'm really glad I did that.” No. I could already tell this was going to be a bleak and baleful journey, with grimace inducing recipes, epic eye rolling inspiring musings on life and vapid tales of “celebrity” blessings and the fact that she was married to a dude that did not want to be a dude and her famous daughter got that way by making a sex tape and owning an orbit enticing and internet breaking butt.
As a fooder professional, I knew the job was going to be dangerous when I took it. So I carried on; reading the anecdotes, studying the recipes, following directions and finally eating my own foot because I locked myself in an abandoned refrigerator near the Santa Cruz wash due to the near lack of flavor and necessity from her passages.
Let us travel these tasteless roads together shall we?
Flipping through the glossy pages of this culinary tome, I quickly realized that ol' Kris here was more into selling a sort of lifestyle than anything else. First few pages were slathered with gawdy 80's era dining room decor, the type of swirly gold leafed designs that used to symbolize opulence, which now occupy the dusty shelves of your local resale depot with cat lady grandmothers picking over them with cigarette stained fingers. Horrible. I didn't take any photos of them. Why would I? This is the Homeskillet, dedicated to all things food and awesome, and her taste in plates and settings was more inspiring to my vertigo and easy gag reflex.
Then came the recipes. "Recipes". Okay, maybe I am sounding like a snooty snot here but at first glance her recipes were the type of easy make, easier bake varietals that one would come across on the back of a bag of shredded cheese. I went a little blind for a moment reading them so I retreated to my family of cookbooks that I actually use and enjoy.
|That's right....more David Chang. Sorry.|
|Yes, that is a vintage children's book above Thomas Keller's "French Laundry Cookbook" and made more sense than Kris Jenner's concoctions.|
My brain and taste buds began to rattle so I killed a case of Hamm's beer and went to bed.
Going back to Kris' cookbook I realized that there weren't a lot of photos of the food. Who does that? I mean, that's why I'm not a huge Rachel Ray fan (one of many reasons mind you...) because her stupid cookbooks don't have enough pictures. You need pictures! I want pictures of the food. It's such an essential, a basic basic in my opinion. The first thing you do is that you eat with your eyes, that's why eating is an all sensory experience and, like, the best thing ever. How hard is it to put a bunch of pictures in your cookbook? There is obviously a budget here. You know, Kardashians and TV and Bruce (well, Caitlin now) and all that, you think they could afford a shot of her kebabs or summer salad or something.
Nope. Not really. But I did find this one:
|Yes. THAT Kim...|
And this one:
|The dad that paid for all of this crap...|
So it became apparent, quite quickly, that Kris Jenner is hyper aware of who got her to where she is. And a cookbook now. Why not? To quote Jane's Addiction: Cash in now honey / Cash in now! Because in a few short years this book, along with their names, could be just as synonymous with faded pop garbage like the Hiltons and Vanilla Ice's and such.
Wait, doesn't Vanilla Ice have a reality show now? Probably...
|I knew it!|
So another day was done and I had to ease the strain by putting a large straw in a box of wine then went out and committed petty crimes.
Wait. There are pictures of food in the book. Not much, but some. And, just like the home decor that was burning the eyes earlier, these shots look like they belonged in a collection called "The Sad Mom's I Give Up Food For A Family That Hates You Anyway".
|Enchiladas covered in shaving cream and orphan tears.|
|After exfoliating your feet, top on the pile of flavorless noodles tossed with ketchup.|
|Pretty sure this is an image from a Village Inn menu circa 1993.|
|Please steam your broccoli until it is a dark green, blanching out all flavor and texture and then go watch "Schindler's List" to try and cheer you up.|
I couldn't take anymore. So I drank a whiskey called Peg Leg Ronaldo's and slammed my toes on the legs of the living room table multiple times until I was clear headed again...
Then it was time to get down. Let's try the recipes!
If you can image a gaggle of chicken parts literally praying to be put out of its misery, then you might have a sense of what I was dealing with here. Does Khloe Kardashian even know what buttermilk is, outside of a line of moisturizer her and her sister Kourtney sell under their Double K brand of stuff you don't need? Not too sure.
So that night I ate a bag of roofies and took advantage of myself.
I didn't even attempt. Rather I drank turpentine, burned all my shoes and air guitar'd naked to the collective works of Captain and Tennille.
Not too sure what a "mashie" is but it resembled a tight loaf of control top nylons stuffed with horse glue and albino sex criminals. The flavor was elementary school cafeteria perfection and that inspired me to snort thumb tacks and then proceed to parade without a license which got me arrested and finally I received a decent meal and I wept happily into my man gruel and juice box.
|Here they are. Nicole's "famous" nachos...|
|I don't see OJ here but, well....uh....|
|Oh. They are to die for....|
Hallucinating, I took off one of my arms and began to beat the invading horde of Martha Stewarts that were descending on me screaming "Why Metal Mark? WHY?"
I don't know imaginary Martha Stewarts. I. Don't. Know...
Trying to make sense of it all, I busted out my notebook and began to score my thoughts down on my whole experience.
Nothing. Pages and pages of mind vomit and I came out as empty as her concept for a lemon tart dessert. I couldn't make sense of any of this. Then, I realized that I skimmed over an image in the book, another life advice from the queen B of D list celebrities.
This. This is what Kris Jenner suggests a "well stocked" fridge is supposed to look like:
So I took one of those Gatorades, poured half down the toilet, filled the rest up with furniture varnish and went to Toys R Us and stole as many My Little Pony's as my shorts could fit and handle.
Another night in jail. Another scrumptious free meal.
It was here, exhausted, famished, drained, hungover, baptized and given the key to the city of Murdoch, WY, that I knew my journey with "In The Kitchen With Kris" had to come to an end.
So I asked our cat, Lil Poundcake, what she thought about it.
|I don't speak cat, but that look shrieks "I will kill you"...|
Maybe it was the large amount of harmful chemicals I had ingested in a few short days, but I'm pretty sure she zoned in on my brain waves and instructed me to "bury it".
Yes, oh wise and fuzzy master. I will do thy bidding.
|Back to the abyss, foul demon!|
Thing is, it didn't work. Like a zombie bad penny, the cookbook arose and came back to me. Frustrated, confused and slightly aroused, I had no other choice than just to leave it for dead by the dumpster.
|And there it sits to this day...|
Sometimes when I get lonely or nostalgic, I'll go out to the dumpster and visit Kris and we silently recall and revisit all the good times we had.
Yeah. Good times...
|Another image from the book. This...but no food photos.|
|With Bruce. Pre Caitlin days before her nachos made him wanna cut it off...|
Well kids. That's the Homeskillet take on Kris Jenner's cookbook. It was the best of times....no it wasn't. It was the worst of times. But it was....times.
Don't say I didn't warn you here. But the only way to deal with a foul culinary mistake such as this, might I prescribe lots of violence and abusive substances. It's the singularly reasonable notion to ride out the level 8 hell ride you will be subject to.
Or, better yet....just stay away. Just say no. Don't do it. It's probably the best advice I can give you in this fragile state that I am now in.
Now...go. Leave me. Leave me to regain the sanity and regrow the man that I know still lives within me.
Sorry Bruce. I mean...Caitlin. I now know what you had to go through. Perhaps I too will join you on the other side. But first, I'd have to get the 'go ahead' from my wife.
Yeah. She said no. Sorry man.
Anyway, here is my final thought on the matter:
Camera and Typing:
Mid June, 2015
"Legalize Drugs and Murder"