(Today’s assignment: publish a post based on your own, personalized take on today’s Daily Prompt)
Today’s prompt is Ring of Fire. Here’s the description:
Do you love hot and spicy foods or do you avoid them for fear of what tomorrow might bring?
It was early September. We had just moved from Michigan to Pennsylvania, new territory for us. The weather was so different! In Michigan, there was already frost on the pumpkins. We had gathered as much as we could from our garden, mostly the root vegetables that didn’t need to be canned or frozen.
In Pennsylvania, however it was still summer-hot. People were harvesting tomatoes, corn, and a variety of other tasty plants. Because we were new in the church family we had come to work for, many new friends shared their harvests with us. They were generous, bringing bags, boxes and baskets of fresh produce. I canned a lot of it, and we loved using all that goodness in our meals every day.
One day, a friend brought me a basket of tomatoes and peppers. “Theyre sweet peppers,” she said. “I sure am glad you like them, because we have more than we can handle!”
I cooked up a big pot of stew that afternoon, filling it up with fresh tomatoes and peppers. It smelled absolutely wonderful. However, after I had cut and chopped and seeded, I noticed that the palms of my hands were starting to burn. You have to understand that I was pretty young, inexperienced, and had never dealt much with fresh peppers before.
When Terry got home, I was holding my hands under cold water. “What on earth–did you burn yourself?”
“I don’t know,” I replied. “After I got the stew going, I just started to feel my hands getting really hot.”
We tried to figure out what it was, but couldn’t.
Until, that is, we sat down to eat. We each took a mouthful of the stew at the same time. If you can picture us, sitting across the table from each other, looking at each other as our eyes grew wider and started to gush tears, our faces turning crimson, then both of us rushing to the sink where we spit out the stew and ran back to the table for water,water, water!
When he could finally talk again, Terry said, “Well, I guess we know why your hands are burning! Didn’t you know those were hot peppers?”
“She said they were sweet! I’ve never grown peppers before, how was I to know?”
Right about then, the phone rang. It was my friend. “Linda, I just realized that I put a handful of hot peppers in that basket. Just wanted you to know, they’re the long thin ones. You only need a little tiny bit when you’re cooking, and make sure you wear gloves when you chop them–and make sure you clean out all the seeds. Enjoy!”