Should I Eat the Mystery Meat?

For me at least, it’s the time of year when thoughts turn towards cleaning out the freezer.

Using my years of experience in dealing with Mystery Meat, I’ve made this little diagram to help you assess whether to eat or dispose of any unknown meatlike products you may find.
Mystery Meat Infographic

Note: If you do decide to eat the Mystery Meat – a chili dish is always a good idea as enough chili will drown out any taste ickyness.

Oh, and a little disclaimer that if you get food poisoning – it’s not my fault! I mean seriously! Why the hell are you taking food safety advice from me?!?


Surfing on a rainy Saturday

It’s been raining all day today, and I was kind of bored and feeling like I needed to surf something a little more than sites with animals doing cute and weird things. Here are some of the cool sites I played with today!

PicLits – I’ve been a member on piclits for a while, but until recently I didn’t realise that others could see and comment on your piclits. Basically, it’s a site where you find a pretty picture and create a poem that’s uploaded to it. This is one of the first piclits I made:

PicLit from

See the full PicLit at

Then I created some social media accounts on Digg and StumbleUpon, if you’re on either, please friend me.  I haven’t bookmarked much on either yet.  Digg has a link to a site with free ebooks and StumbleUpon has the ebook link, a couple of videos from the hailstorm in Melbourne today (so I can remember to show them to my brother next time I see him) and a link to a funny article about police being called about a naked woman tied to a tree that turned out to be a consensual thing.

I learned to speak Italian at Live Mocha … well, I haven’t mastered the language yet.  But so far I can identify people – and I know how to say She is Fat, I am Fat and You are Fat.  Plus, I can say “I am a female, I am short” and this is me saying it!  

I downloaded 1984 (the book, not the album) from Planet eBook because although I’m pretty sure that I read it while I was at school I don’t remember much about it.  I assume it must have been assigned reading, otherwise I expect I’d have paid more attention.

Then, because reading 1984 on my laptop reminded why I really need to get an iPad or Kindle or something similar… I went looking for an audio book at Books Should Be Free.  What I really love about this is that you can sample the books before you download them and there’s a huge range of books.

And a couple of places you can have some great fun with pictures (I’m sure you’ve all seen my “Glamourman” shot below), it was made at Photofunia but there are a heap of other great places to play with pictures listed at 25 Websites To Have Fun With Your Photos

Cool eh?

Handy hints

So here are some things I’ve learned through trial and error…. mostly they actually ARE useful

  • Put jeans and similar stuff in the clothes dryer & get them out as soon as the cycle finishes and you won’t have to iron them.
  • Spray cooking oil on your freezer after defrosting it and the ice will just leap off next time.
  • If you burn stuff in a saucepan, put some cooking oil in it, & heat it for a while. The burnt on gunk will just fall off!Yep, everything's colourful at Chez Shary</ul> <p>n
  • Bicarb soda will clean almost anything without too much scrubbing. It’s especially great for coffee cups and bathtubs/showers.
  • Vinegar is another good cleaning thing, especially for glass & similar stuff, it just pongs a bit if you don’t rinse it well.
  • Vinegar is also good for getting rid of the gunk in kettles and anything that gets water deposit problems. Just put it in & boil then empty & rinse VERY well.
  • Put foil on your oven trays & you can just change the foil each time you use ’em rather than washing the tray.
  • Your car really doesn’t need a lot of oil!

Cooking tips

These are a few of the tips I have found over several years of being culinary deficient.

  • Chocolate bars are not a good substitute for sugar when making coffee.
  • Neither is icing sugar.
  • NEVER pick up the toaster by the toasting slots until it has cooled down.
  • If you need to test whether the oil is hot, use a piece of meat, or vegetable, not your finger!!
  • Always check that the lumps in the gravy are not the meat.
  • Leave the door of the griller OPEN when toasting bread rolls.
  • If you’re doing the washing up, take the rubber gloves off before getting anything out of the oven. Thanks to Lisa
  • Do not roll out pastry onto newspaper.
  • Do not keep the Domestos bottle next to the washing up detergent bottle. Thanks to Noelene
  • If you use enough chilli, anything tastes good
  • Aloe vera gel, straight from the plant will stop almost ANY burn from scarring (Trust me – I know)
  • Do not boil 2 minute noodles in an electric kettle – They’re VERY hard to get out. (OK, so I didn’t actually do this!)
  • The following is not a good hamburger recipe: 1 bun, 1 hamburger pattie, 1 egg, 1 onion, 1 can mushrooms in butter sauce, 1 slice cheese, a couple of slices of Philly cheese, Dijon mustard, seed mustard, mayonaise, steak sauce.
  • Don’t wash your coffee cup – eventually you won’t need to add coffee the dregs will be enough
  • Don’t squeeze the bottle while you’re opening it

My colourful kitchen