Sunday, December 23, 2012

The Pioneer Woman

Dear Pioneer Woman woman,
Ree Drummond - The Pioneer Woman

I just need you to know that you are beginning to pose a bit of a problem for me. I discovered your Food Network Program three or four months ago. I don’t know how long your show has been broadcasting since I had pretty much stopped watching Food Network. It seems that competitions had taken over and that just doesn’t sit well with me. I used to watch the network a lot because I would learn from cooks comfortably preparing recipes that I could use and experiment with. I liked the fact that they seemed to be explaining stuff just for me. But when they made cooking a competitive sport, I lost interest. I liked it so much better when the food was the subject and not personalities jousting with each other.

I have Direct TV which I am sort of stuck with. One thing that I am able to do is scan through the titles of programs on different channels and select the shows I want to record on my fancy DVR. I think I saw The Pioneer Woman buried in there a few times. Finally I surmised that the title didn’t seem so much like a competition so, ya’ know -- just to see, so I pushed the button on my remote to record one of them. Finally one early weekend morning I settled down with my coffee to see what you were all about.

I have to say that the opening sequence caught my attention. You know – cowboys, the entrance to your ranch, your dog, and the open Oklahoma prairie. But what caught my attention was your voice. You spoke slowly and calmly simple explained that, “My food is simple, yet scrumptious and all my recipes have to be approved by cowboys and the kids…and me.” Then you follow up with, “Here’s what’s happening on the ranch.”

Now that is an introduction that caught my attention. Laid back, calm, picturesque, and inviting me to stay tuned. I paused, refilled my cup, and settled in to watch the show. I watched your husband and kids dropping off feed for the cattle, and then your basset hound settling down to watch you in the kitchen as you began to prepare a meal for the family when they return from their chores. Yeah, it looked simple and scrumptious and you calmly showed me how I could do it.

Marilyn, my wife, walked in yawning walking zombie-like toward the coffee pot. With coffee in hand, she stopped and sat down with me to watch. You have to understand, Marilyn does not watch cooking shows. She considers them boring. But you captured her attention.

I just have to say that after watching one show, I pushed the magic buttons to record every one of your future shows, even those repeats. I have now watched quite a few of your programs. Yeah, your ranch life and your family seem perfect and yeah, some of it seems a little staged. But that is okay because it makes me feel good. And I will even forgive some of the competition presented….that roping contest, and that time that you beat your husband at skeet shooting. I even smiled when you went to the church social complaining about all those Baptists that hog the restaurants in the area right after church.

You tell me that you are ‘Lee Drummond, a writer, blogger, photographer, mother, and I’m an accidental country girl’.  You are also becoming a problem in our house.

I guess I am interested in trying about half of the recipes you present. I did braise a roast using unsalted beef stock like you suggested. I normally use left-over coffee from the coffee pot with some of that powdered gravy mix for braising. I figure the result was a toss-up between the two of us. I did prepare our turkey for Thanksgiving like you said – you know, soaking it in brine. I guess it was juicier. I’m not sure because it seems the rest of the extended family grabbed most of it before me. But what I like most are the side dishes and appetizers and desserts.

My problem, Ms. Drummond, is that on every show there is one recipe that I really want to try. Even that one where you took club crackers and piled up Parmesan Cheese on them and wrapped each cracker with thin bacon and plopped them in the oven at a couple of hundred degrees and let them cook for a couple of hours. It all melded together and you then threw them in a big baggie and stored them in the freezer. ‘Just pull out and heat when company comes over. They will love ‘em’. (Yes, I am also fascinated with substituting brown sugar for the cheese for a sweet variation.)

You see. Every show has a recipe that I have to try. So I save the show. Now I have seven of your programs saved on my DVR. They are beginning to compete with ‘The Good Wife’ and that Tom Selleck program ‘Blue Bloods', ‘The Middle’, and all those other weird shows that Marilyn records. I know. You have a a fancy blog filled with recipes (and a bunch of other stuff that I need to wade through)…but you have a gazillion recipes there. I can’t remember which ones I had recorded, so I have to go back to the recording….so now you have made my life too complicated. Besides, it just works better when I see you doing it on my TV screen.

I have made a pact with myself to prepare ahead of time, watch one of your recorded shows, and prepare the recipe on the spot. That way I can delete the recording. I figure if I cooked it once, I will remember it. This will take a bit of time and aforethought on my part – and I have been lousy at aforethinking.

But you have more shows to come. Aaaarrgh!

So you are disrupting my life and probably a lot of people like me. I hope you are satisfied.




  1. Hahaha you ate too funny. I'm sure you can just get the recipes from the online site. I checked. Bet you did too! maybe the girls in the show have a way of casting their spell to get you yo watch :)
    Happy Holidays to you and thanks for dropping by now and then.
    Glad to find you're posting again too.

  2. AAahhhh Jerry! I love your posts!! I'm sorry if I had you worried, I too have not blogged for quite a while and I appreciated your comment today :) I am just peachy, things are more wonderful than ever actually. I hope to start blogging more frequently, it's just that life has had me quite busy! Many blessings to you my friend!! We'll chat again soon :)

  3. Ah, so that's what you've been doing when you haven't been here! Merry Christmas!

  4. Stopping by to wish you a wonderful Christmas and a wonderful Holidays with your loved ones. Thank you for all your lovely comments and visits in the past year.

  5. Wonderful post, although I haven't cooked in a long time. Instead I've become the # 1 customer in the take-out food section of the local supermarket. Wishing you a very happy Christmas.

  6. The TV is insidious, is it not? :-)

    Hope you had a merry Christmas, Jerry. Sorry about the whoopin' the Vikes handed your Texans!

    Greetings from Minneapolis,


  7. Glad to see you back here again. And wish I was a better cook.

  8. Her wonderful receipes should keep you quite busy. Have a Happy New Year!

  9. What a shame. You made my hunger for good writing go away. But you made my hunger for hearty food, which is a great deal stronger, more tangible and more urgent, kick up a notch. Thanks a heap.

  10. I don't actually have much access to TV, but I do like cooking shows...mostly, I like seeing you up and posting again (I don't do too much of that myself these days and that's why it's taken me so long to come across I'm off to read about 'Not Lying to Dogs') :)