Sunday, October 11, 2009

Cautionary Note

When working with dried herbs it is frequently advised that the herbs be rubbed between the palms of the hands to release their oils and flavors before they are put into the dish. I've been doing this a long time with no adverse effects... until tonight.
While preparing a rub for a chicken dish I poured a quantity of dried oregano into my palms and proceeded to rub my hands together to crush the pieces. After dumping the oregano into the bowl I felt something odd in my palm and took a close look. I was surprised to see a splinter of some kind sticking out of my skin. I grabbed it to pull it out and couldn't get the danged thing to budge. I finally had to get a pair of tweezers for a really good grip and managed to tug the little bugger out. Imagine my surprise to find that it wasn't just a splinter but something akin to a cactus spine! The reason I had such a devil of a time removing it was the tiny barbs on the spine.
Upon showing it to Fayme she suggested that I use a mortar and pestle next time instead of my palms. The only mortar and pestle we have is pretty tiny so I think I'll be on the lookout for a larger one. That little spine hurt and I don't want to repeat that experience if I can help it.

Jeez... I know to be careful with sharp knives and I don't cook bacon naked... but I never expected to get hurt by oregano!

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