After a long hard day parenting, homeschooling, laundering, chauffeuring, and general upkeep of my family, I thought that I would slave over the stove to cook them a wonderful meal.
Because that’s the kind of gal I am.
All of the stove burners were occupied with homemade mashed potatoes, steamed fresh green beans, and Jensen’s hot dogs. Jensen required hot dogs because salmon was on the menu, and he gleefully reminded me that he is allergic to fish.
Therefore, the salmon was relegated to the oven. On the broil setting. Using a recipe that I’ve used many many times. Simply, I make a marinade of olive oil and garlic, and them I add salt, pepper, and a little of Emeril’s secret seasoning.
I threw some shrimp on the broiling tray, because I had a hankering for shrimp. I doused them with a bit of the marinade.
When it was time to turn the salmon, I scooped up the shrimp, and returned the salmon to the broiler. All was going splendidly, as I hustled the potatoes and green beans over to the table, to make room for the broiler pan to sit on top of the stove.
I opened the oven door to check on the progress, and I was greeted by flames. Centered in the pool of marinade where the shrimp once stood. I quickly closed the oven door, turned off the oven, and assessed my options.
Save the salmon.
I mean, have you priced salmon lately?
I grabbed the pot holders, opened the oven door, and retrieved the broiler pan containing two beautiful salmon fillets and shooting fiery flames.
I calmly sat the pan on the stove top. In the meantime, Emme had flown out of the room and ran down to Fiddledaddy’s office. “DAD! FIRE!” This was when both Cailey and Jensen were made aware of my predicament, and began screaming and crying, both falling to the floor.
I was aware of none of this. As hard as it may be to believe, but in the face of an emergency, I become very focussed. And very calm. And very quiet. Eerily so.
I decided that the best way to put out the blaze, and at the same time save the salmon, was to smother the flames with a handy tea towel hanging on the stove handle.
Unfortunately, when I prepared to smother the flames, the tea towel inadvertently fanned the flames and they grew to a rather alarming size. Undaunted, I decided that I would wet my tea towel, and give it another go at smothering the flames, taking care to avoid moistening the salmon.
However, Fiddledaddy had his own idea and stepped in by grabbing the kitchen sink nozzle, pulling it out to its full extension, and spraying water all over my stove, me, and the beautiful salmon.
There was a good deal of commotion that followed. I argued the case of attempting to save the salmon, he argued the case of keeping the house from burning to the ground, Emme argued that she should have been allowed to use the fire extinguisher at will, and Cailey and Jensen were left to wail on the floor.
And what luck, all of our windows were open, so that the neighbors were able to enjoy our pre-meal time banter.
When the air cleared, and everyone calmed down, I quietly squeezed the excess water from the salmon and placed them in a saute pan. Fiddledaddy talked to the children about fire safety and how we need to have a plan in the event of an actual emergency. Everyone has a job.
He told Emme to first get him, then the fire extinguisher. He told Jensen to remain calm. And he told Cailey to go get mommy’s camera for a blog picture.
I received no instruction. I’m guessing that’s because he perceives that it is difficult to teach an old dog new tricks.
At the end of the day, the salmon was saved, and we discovered the merits of having a regular fire drill built into our action packed schedule. I was left to mourn the loss of my after dinner shot glass of Choco-Vine. And how really nice it is to go out to dinner.