There is a threat of inclement weather here in Mississippi tonight. A THREAT. I have seen photographic evidence that the bread aisle at a major grocery outlet has been purged. I fear the same for the dairy department. So what do you do with bread and milk when snow and ice keep you home for a few days (or in our case, until noon tomorrow)? I pulled this out of the archives from January, 2011, in case you need some tips.
I tend to stay a little behind. A case could certainly be made that this is due to my gift of procrastination, but we can discuss that tomorrow. I live on the cutting edge of fashion, circa 1997 – that’s the year I got married, and my bride has been trying to bring me up to date ever since. I am always leap years behind in technology. We did buy a flat-screen TV, and one of my New Year’s resolutions was to get our 1998 VCR hooked up to it so we can watch all our VHS tapes.
I was behind yet again this week in preparing for the winter storm. I saw a friend at Wal-Mart Friday who was traveling to Oklahoma on Sunday – that is, she said, if the snow doesn’t keep us from going. I assumed she meant the snow in Oklahoma. Then I heard Sid Salter talking about the mad rush Mississippians make to the grocery whenever snow is predicted, and how it would probably be gone by Monday. Hmmmm. Maybe I should look at the weather. Sid probably doesn’t care if it’s snowing in Oklahoma. Usually it’s my daughter who is calling the time-temp-weather number as soon as she arises, and she had not mentioned anything of a blizzard. Then my wife went to the store to get some bread – not because of snow – we were just out. She said the crowd was crazy – I was beginning to catch on.
I have always been curious about the near desperate race to obtain milk and bread prior to a storm. First of all, what can you do with just milk and bread? If the roads are so bad that I have to camp inside for a few days, what can I actually make with those two ingredients alone? I know I am not the first person to ask these questions, but I have never really seen answers, either, so I decided to explore.
I began by “googling” my own brain. The search results were limited. Of course, there is the simplest of the simple: a glass of milk and a piece of toast. That might work for breakfast for a day or two, but it could get pretty old three meals a day for the rest of the campout. French toast is another, more exotic possibility – but it usually requires eggs. Ditto for bread pudding, but let’s be honest: I do enjoy a good bread pudding from time to time, either sweet or savory, but is that really what people are planning to make with their precious milk and bread?
Clearly I did not have much luck rummaging around my own mind for milk and bread recipes, so I moved on to the world-wide inter-web and searched my favorite recipe site. The first key words I tried were “bread and milk”. The number one recipe was titled, believe it or not, “Bread and Milk”. Being a copyrighted recipe, I won’t repeat it here, but it was extremely simple and only required a bit of sugar to supplement the basics. The rest of the top ten was much more interesting: three bread puddings, two kinds of meatballs (plus one meatball sauce that didn’t even call for bread or milk), two canederli’s (Austrian style liver dumplings with speck), and a lasagna. I wonder how many people clogging the aisles over the weekend were stockpiling ingredients for liver dumplings? Seriously, speck?
Finally, just for kicks, I searched for “milk and bread”. Again, at the top was the milk/bread/sugar dish, then two bread puddings, another set of meatballs, cretons (some sort of breakfast pork spread – really, Emeril?), Maid of Honour cakes, cinnamon rolls, two varieties of mac and cheese, and a sausage scramble that didn’t even call for bread. Some of these sounded pretty good, but most required far more ingredients than just milk and bread. The lasagna asked for twenty extras. Wow. And trust me, unless you keep the rinds from Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese hanging about, it is unlikely you are making this lasagna during a snowstorm.
After doing this intensive research I’ve come to several conclusions. One, I need to install the weather app on my phone. Two, as long as I am risking life and limb to get to the grocery before the next storm, I should get eggs, too. Three, since the snow began to fall I have had neither a drop of milk nor crumb of bread. Finally, Austrians must really know how to shop for snow days – I went to the grocery last night, and they are still out of speck.