Friday, October 28, 2011

Need Room / Guest / Cold, Pain / Cheap Fast Spaghetti

I finally got around to emptying out a lot of the contents of the tank looking for the heater and moving other stuff around where I can get to it when I need it without having to empty it again. Unfortunately all of the stuff you see in front of it needs to go back in it and that's where the problem comes in. I put it back in there as is and it will have to be stacked back on top of the stuff I just arranged where I can get to it. I SURE NEED to build some shelves in there, but that will have to come later.

I just happened to look at one of the tires under this trailer as I was coming back in this morning and saw the large walking stick on it. I bet it was cold because it was 38 degrees according to the thermometer in the It'll Du earlier. Don't know how these guys handle freezing weather, but if they don't it's time may be nearing the end.

Cold, Pain? Yep... with the cold weather comes all the damn joint pain and my right knee has gotten to be the worst of all. Last night it got so bad that it was almost impossible for me to get up and down. Just bending that knee a little too much caused agonizing pain so I didn't move around anymore than I had to. Getting up and down the steps of this trailer isn't much better than just getting up and sitting down. Looks like I may have to build a ramp to be able to get in and out of here. I'm actually thinking about building a splint to wear when its giving me trouble so I can't bend that knee at all. That won't help being able to get up and down much, but at leas it should help the pain or at least cut down on it. I'm sure I'm going to have to live with the pain though because surgery isn't in my future. BTW... the heater felt mighty good several times last night and early this morning to.

Here you have another one of my makeshift dishes. I guess you could call it spaghetti? Anyway I'd used the flavor packet out of a pack of shrimp Top Ramen noodles for a rice dish I concocted a few days ago and didn't want to trash the noodles. I've made spaghetti like this before, but used the flavor packet though. This time I used half the water called for. (About 1 cup to boil the noodles in. Added garlic power to the water as well as Italian seasoning, salt, pepper and some ground Oregano. I boiled the water with the seasonings first and then added the noodles. After that I placed the noodles in the water and boiled them for 7 minutes and there was still a little too much water so I added about a table spoon of 5 minute rise to absorb the rest of the water. Then I added the last 2 table spoons of butter I had and an 8 Oz can of tomato paste and simmered it for a few minutes. It was actually about as good as any meatless spaghetti as I've had. Didn't have any meat this time, but the next time I get the hankering for spaghetti I'll make sure I do. This makes a real fast batch of spaghetti and could have probably fed two, but I pigged out on it myself. I'd suspect using 2 or more packs of the noodles and maybe some diced tomatoes with a little meat of some kind (Diced Spam should be real good) and it would probably make a good meal for several. (Especially with some garlic toast and shake cheese)


  1. David - Reckon that some shelving would certainly help LOL

    Do you know that stick insects are the Bushman's God. And that female stick insects eat their mate after copulating LOL

    Are you able to heat some dry beans or pearl barley and shove the warm beans in a sock. Then drape that sock over your painful knees to sooth the pain.

    With the noodles - if you turn the heat right down towards the end of the cooking time, and allow the noodles to absorb the water that you're cooking them in, then they will be more easily digested / absorbed when you eat them. And pasta is what long distance cyclists eat to give them energy so hopefully they will help you get through the cold months ahead ;) But your recipe does sound delicious :)

  2. Dani, main problem with making shelves is making the back part round to fit the contour of the tank. Either that or make a bunch of narrow shelves and place them side by side. When I get the material to do it I guess I'll try it.

    BTW there is a ladder in the center of the tank and a scuttle hole in the roof with a hinged lid. I'm thinking about building the small pyramid I mentioned some time back on top of the tank and a bunch of small stuff could be stored up there.

    Nope... can't say I knew either of those about the insect. BAD GIRLS! I know they eat other insects though so they're worth letting them stay around.

    Only way to heat something like that would be on the stove. I'd have to run the generator to use the microwave.

    I don't think the Ramen noodles are your average pasta, but maybe they are. I do know its a heck of a lot faster to make spaghetti like I did than the normal way with real spaghetti. No boiling, straining and then rinsing involved. Most people probably wouldn't know it wasn't spaghetti either.

  3. Sorry to hear about your knee. The last time I saw you, you were walking just fine. You were getting your mail and John pointed you out to me and I introduced my self to you and shook your hand. That was a couple of years ago near the grub shack.

  4. I like spaghetti, but the typical spaghetti noodles are too thick for my taste. The thin spaghetti noodles are great, but what i really like is angel hair. much thinner than spaghetti. with about a cup and a half of water, or two cups, a serving of angel hair can be al dente in about 5 minutes. add a bit of del monte pasta sauce ($1.00 a can at dollar general), and it is damn good for quick and easy spaghetti. The angel hair is less than a dollar. with 2 dollars worth of ingredients, you can have at least 3 meals.

  5. Cheff-Boy-R-U

    Hope the weather warms and your knee greese starts working soon.

  6. Hey Tffn....if you want to build some shelves, head up to my place and grab a couple of sheets of some of that older "fuzzy" OSB I have laying around, look for a few warped/twisted 2x4s laying on the porch...and make you some shelves.
    I'm serious dude...!!
    I can email you combination for the gate lock.

  7. And as for the knee issues...liberal oral doses of brown liquid will cure anything....for awhile.

  8. DD, yeah I remember that, but I don't think the weather was cold at the time. I can't believe at your age you don't have a lot of joint pain in cold weather. If not you are a very lucky man. Both of my knees have been screwed up from when I was in an accident when I was in the army (Since 1969). They've always given me hell in the winter, but I still managed being a construction stump jumper for about a year before I switched to HVAC. My left one was usually the one to give me so much pain, but for some reason now my right one has gotten a lot worse.

    Dave, the difference is that the Ramen noodles are very versatile and can be used for all sorts of stuff and they are dirt cheap. I had regular spaghetti here, but just had tomato sauce and no spaghetti sauce. That is also very versatile and cheap so that's usually what I keep around. I used to dice spam in small cubes and put in spaghetti when I used to make it before I came down here and like it a lot better than hamburger and it speeds stuff up a lot to because you don't have to brown it before adding it. I just didn't have any around at the time. If you've never used spam in spaghetti I'd highly recommended trying it. It is GREAT!

    lou, I think Cheff-Boy-R-U's off the wall spaghetti is a lot better than Cheff-Boy-R-D's canned stuff is. ;) Both knees are doing better for now. I just never know when that will change.

    Bigfoot, I'll E you. As for the amber liquid that's also very versatile and I keep it around when I can. Trouble is that I use it for so much stuff (in coke, in sprite, in DP, straight and... it goes fast. ;)

  9. Dave, I know it takes energy ($) to heat anything up, but that's what you need on that knee. A cheep CVS heating pad will do wonders. A hot water bottle will do the trick, also. A cheep, easy to make solar water heater can be made out of black plastic lawn and leaf trash bags. The lawn and leaf ones are made out of thicker plastic, and thus hold up against abrasion and punctures better. All you do is put a few gallons of water in one and lay it out in the sun. You just have to be careful with the bag opening to keep the water in. One of those Solar Showers that they sell at sporting goods stores for campers would be great. They are made of very thick plastic, and hold up to abuse well. All you do is put some water inside, hang it in the sun for a few hours, and, voila! hot water. Good luck with it all.

  10. Allen, I'm sure I'll get buy it each time it gives me hell. Just a matter of getting past the cold spells.

  11. Hi David,

    I know how you feel. I have a bad shoulder (torn rotator) and it always hurts more in cold weather. But glad you guys are having some relief from the 120 degree weather.

    Wish I were down there already. We will be there the week before Thanksgiving. Look for you then...will have gifts for I'm not a whiskey drinker, so if I get some this year from customers here, I'll bring it for you..


  12. Terry, I've got a torn rotor cuff in my left shoulder to so that's just more pain to put up with in cold weather. Fortunately lately its been warm enough that the pain hasn't been bad, but I know that will change later on.

    Right now is not a good time to be here unless you plan to go to the chili cook off and stay there. From what I hear some of (if not all) of the heat has already made it down south. I'm going to head to Alpine in a few days for supplies rather than going south and will try to make sure I don't have to go south for at least a week or until the heat leaves.

  13. We won't be there till the week before thanksgiving, so the chili cook off will be done by then.

  14. Yeah I know Terry. Just added that because of you saying you wish you were down here and for anyone that might be planning to come down other than for the cook off.

  15. Just saw a guy on TV showing how to cook spaghetti without needing to rinse in cold water at the end. He put dry spaghetti in the bottom of a large frying pan, added cold water, then heated it. Because the water started cold the pasta didn't stick together. When it was cooked the way he liked he took it out of the remaining water with tongs, and then said you can use any remaining "starchy" water in soup/sauce/gravy for another meal if you want. Sound's like a great way to do it when water is in short supply!


  17. Anon, I'll have to try that.

    warrior, If you're talking about at the cook off It has been lifted for cooking and camp fires, but rules apply. Everywhere else? I don't think so... so I guess its about time for a demonstration for Brewster county commissioner's houses maybe?

  18. The burn ban was extended for another 90 days:

  19. OE, you know the burn ban wouldn't be so hard to live with if the idiotic ban on using propane cookers, BBQ pits and even briquettes wasn't added to it. In my opinion that is no more than local government control freaks pushing their BS on us. Then add the lifting it for the chili cook off with all the drunks there and not for us just adds insult to injury!