Slow Dancing with the VM

I’m just going to say this, right up front…

Very very VERY few of you are going to make it to the end of this blog post without being deeply disturbed. If you have any Ativan, pop one (or two) now.

If you are a drinker, go ahead and mix up a stiff one…

…or do whatever it is you kids are doing these days for “fun”.  Snort cinnamon or eat Tide Pods…  you know, I don’t judge.  Whatever you need to do, you know, to help you cope with disturbing mental images just go ahead and get that going.

Here… watch this gif til the medication kicks in.

Trippy, huh?



…the other day I was naked in the kitchen dirty dancing with the Virgin Mary while a squirrel watched.

Yay! Now let’s dive right into today’s recipe!


Did you need me to explain something about that statement?



…if I must.


My life seems to be long stretches of “boring repetitive nothing unusual-ness” broken up by intensely active little fits of “everything in the universe need to happen NOW”.  As it happened, on that fateful morning, medical beds were being delivered for my in-laws, who were traveling 1,060 miles to spend the 4th of July with us. As it also happened, the fuel company was coming to look for a gas leak somewhere in my attic…

Maybe THAT’S why I’m so strange.  I’ve been sniffing propane for who knows how long!

They suspected a gas leak was in the attic space near the kitchen.  The only access to that space was directly above my 400 pound cement Virgin Mary which I have in a corner of my kitchen.

Why do I have a 400 pound segment Virgin Mary? Why DON’T you?

I like her.  She’s pretty to me.

I’m not a religious person, but for some reason I fell for her.  She spoke to me.

::cue harps::

“Scoooooott… I’m prrrreeeeety.”

OK, maybe she didn’t speak to me quite that literally.

We were living in Poplar Bluff Missouri.

A few miles down Highway 51 I found a cement yard in a tiny little town named Qulin MO.

Who knows what I showed up there to look at, but I was fascinated by the place.

…and there she was.

I liked the blue.

I liked the wear and cracks and chips.

She was my Queen of wabi-sabi.

I bought her.

They loaded her up with a forklift.

Wait…  is that propane tanks behind her?  What is the connection between Virgin Mary and Propane?

I dropped her on my feet trying to get her out by myself.  Yeah, those are my boots squished under 4 pieces of cabinet grade plywood.  See…  when she spoke to me and said,

”Scoooooott… I’m prrrreeeeety.  Yooooouu should buuuuuyy meeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.”

…I sort of didn’t think of how I was going to unload her. If Mark came home and she was still in the truck he could easily have said “What do we need a 400 pound Virgin Mary for? Take that thing back.”  Since I didn’t have an answer for that…  Because I couldn’t verbalize my beautiful vision for her… I wanted her.

Somehow through “Divine Intervention” and a good hand truck I got that Virgin Marry in the house by myself,  and she’s been hanging out with us ever since.

She even moved twice with us.

She likes to celebrate the special occasions and holidays.

Here she is at Christmas hanging with good ol’ St. Nick.

Here she is gazing lovingly at… ice cream… for some reason.

Here she is celebrating the release of the Star Wars prequel Rougue One.  Silly VM. Chewbacca wasn’t even in Rouge One.  It’s kind of disturbing that I have so many pictures of VM.

(…and yes, for all you photo quality snobs, those were pictures I took with my phone camera and uploaded to FaceBook, then saved down to my iPad then uploaded to this blog.  They been through a lot.  I wish I looked half that good…)

If you could pan up in that last picture you would see the access hatch to the attic where they suspected the leak was. The last time the fuel guys had been there, they told me to move to VM so they could go up and have a look around. Luckily, I keep The VM on big thick soft furniture mover pads so she doesn’t scratch the floor and to move her.

Moving her is a slow process which involves full body contact, but once you get the rhythm down, it’s more of a swinging shuffle. Grab her by the left hand and swing her forward while you wrap your other arm around her and use your full body to make sure she doesn’t topple over.  Then, grab her right hand and swing forward while holding with the left arm and full body.  It’s sort of a waddle/dance.

Before we go any farther…  you should also know something.

I like squirrels.

I could write ad nauseam on the topic of squirrels…

HOWEVER I won’t…



All you need to know if that I have many many squirrel friends. One squirrel comes to my door and looks in if I forget to feed them.

(yes. i feed my squirrels. shhhhhhhhhh. i’m not sure Mark knows.)


On this fateful clear morning, the man arrives to deliver and set up the medical beds we rented for the in-laws. He arrived later than I expected and it took a bit longer than expected to set the beds up. Once I sign the rental forms and get the delivery guy on the road, I strip off my clothes and jump in the shower.  Mid shampoo I realize the gas repair guys would be showing up at any moment, and Mary still stood proudly under the access hatch.

I flew out of the shower, dried a bit…

…and full body tackled the Virgin Mary and started to waddle dance her across the kitchen… completely nekkid. Did I adequately explain you that moving the VM is full body contact…  I can now tell you honestly it’s FUUUUULL BODY contact.

I got her waddle danced over to the kitchen garden door well out of the way, and I happen to notice one of the furniture mover pads had waddle danced out from one of the corners.  I bent over, squat a bit and grunted around till I got the pad back under her.

Got the visual?

You are probably thinking about now that I turned around and the gas repair guys are standing at the door and its some big awkward thing…

While that would be about par for the course…


Have you ever been judged by a squirrel?

Altogether, its a shaming experience.

Look at him.

That gaze is clearing saying “Scott, I can see your* nuts.”

Silly silly squirrels are really not good with grammar. *It should be “you’re”.

I JUST want to take a moment to remind that little squirrel (who I am sure reads my blog) that I’ve watched from my kitchen window many many times as he does things with his nuts that I’m pretty sure are illegal in most countries (except Germany.) Squirrels do enjoy a nice roasted peanut.

I’m confident he won’t hold it against me that I dirty danced with the Virgin Mary… though, I haven’t seen the raccoon since. Maybe all the critters out the back door know now.  (I refuse to call them Backdoor Critters because… well…)


How about a nice chorizo to clear out that dirty mental image?

Now, that chorizo is not just a random vaguely suggestive picture. Its part of the recipe I’m going to urge everyone to try.

…because it’s DELICIOUS.

It’s also a sandwich!

I know!


It’s one of those sandwiches that gets ahold of you and you want it again and again. How many times have I said on this blog “You are going to just have to trust me”?



You don’t really need a recipe, just a magic combination of ingredients.

There are only five.

  • Bread.  Choose a nice crusty baguette… or whatever you have on hand.  Maybe not Wonder Bread…
  • Dark Chocolate.  Not Semi-Sweet, or Milk.  Dark.  Best quality your store sells, or that you can afford.
  • Chorizo. Get a really good pork chorizo.  My favorite brand was Dartagnan. 
  • Goat Cheese.

I hate hate hate hate hate hate haTE HATE GOAT CHEESE.  barf.

I use Kasseri cheese which is Goat (eerp) Cheese and Sheep Milk Cheese mixed together.  It tames the goatiness of that vile goat cheese.

Try the goat cheese if you (eerp) want.

That tanginess is needed for this sandwich.

I tried Cream Cheese.  I tried Feta.  I tried Cream Cheese and Feta.  It needs the musky goatiness of the goat cheese.

I’m OBSESSED with this sandwich yet I get repulsed by one of its ingredients.

I know.  I’m complicated.

OK, so we’ve got Bread, Chorizo, Dark Chocolate and Goat! Cheese!

The magic ingredient that cuts through it all and brings it all together…

  • Lemon Zest.


Chorizo, Goat Cheese, Dark Chocolate and Lemon Zest on a crusty roll.


Sizzle your Chorizo till its nice and done, and the chorizo grease coats the pan. Cut it in half so it fits on the sandwich better. Peel it if the casing bothers you.

Put your cheese on both sides of the baguette. (If its real goat cheese shmeer it on.) Top with chopped dark chocolate and lemon zest. Flop on your chorizo.

Grill baby, grill! Smoosh it down panini style. The grease from when you cooked the chorizo earlier will coat the outside and make it even better and help it not stick.

Flip that baby once.  You want the cheese and the chocolate to be just melty but not runny.  Its still going to be delicious if it gets that way though…


I literally couldn’t stop eating this as I was taking pictures.

You will get chocolate on your face. You will not be mad about it, I swear.

Please, give it a try.  The spicy chorizo is countered by the almost sweet almost bitter dark chocolate.  The chocolate tempers the musty cheese and the lemon somehow, magically brings the entire thing together in a satisfying crunch.  Heaven.It works on so many levels and reminds me of molè, but one nobody but you has discovered.

…and please, don’t tell anyone I dirty danced with the Virgin Mary.


  1. A. Mary is lovely, and I think the kitchen is perfect for her. That is where you create foodie miracles, right? It is also the source of your most colorful verbal outburst, right
    B. I also love and feed squirrels. Steve knows but told me not to tell the neighbors.

  2. Seriously that sandwich was flippin’ amazeballs!

    And the VM has a mildly sly grin on her face when I last visited. THIS must have been why. 😉

  3. *Laughing out loud* The sandwich looks ahh-maa-zing. And love your VM. Don’t blame you for bring that masterpiece home. Makes one wonder exactly the history of where she’s been in life. She’s beautiful! And now Keto is on the back burner.

  4. I can almost taste the sandwich with your pics and story!! I’m truly curious, though, what was the inspiration for this combo of ingredients?? So creative and yet SO delicious!

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