What a gorgeous morning, huh? Cool, low humidity – a perfect day to throw a roast in the Crock-Pot to simmer, filling the house with enough succulent beefy aroma to drive the dog nuts all day long.
An intelligent person would have thought ahead and removed the roast from the freezer the night before so it could thaw before placing into the slow cooker but sometimes you just have to run with spur of the moment ideas, especially when they're great ones, right? So I held the roast under running water long enough to get the wrapper off, coated it with coarse Kosher salt, cracked black pepper, a few herbs and spices, and dropped it into the waiting crock.
It didn't fit – just about an inch and a half too long. Now what? I got out the big butcher knife, put the roast on the counter and started hacking away. No luck. Next I tried a long blade with a serrated edge. Nada. Tried slashing at it with one of those broad ax-looking things. Nope. I got out the meat mallet and pounded the heck out of the back of the ax-looking thing with it. Little wet chunks went flying but there was no appreciable headway.
Finally, I trotted out to the garage and sorted through Ben's old hacksaws, settling on a nice blue one with a dangerously long, sharp blade. After 10 minutes of steady sawing, I was only half an inch into that hunk of meat and sweat was trickling down my face and chest. I may as well have not showered this morning at all.
It was now 7:20. I was exhausted and still needed to dry my hair and put on makeup before work, so I gave up and slapped the roast back into the crock pot with the end hanging over the edge. More coarse salt, more freshly cracked black pepper, more spices, and a little luscious merlot because I decided it was absolutely necessary to open the bottle even though it was only 7:30 in the morning. I cocked the lid on as best I could, balanced precariously on the end of the roast.
I'm having tender, delicious beef roast and tiny green beans with strawberry shortcake for supper tonight come hell or high water.
Hurrying to beat the clock, I snatched the carton of overripe strawberries from the refrigerator and chunked them up into a bowl, slicing any mushy bits off into the sink. A good coat of sugar and a splash of red wine (since it was handy) and the plastic-wrapped bowl was ready for the fridge.
Then I looked around the kitchen. Two large butcher knives. One ax-looking thing. One metal mallet. A 15-inch blue hacksaw streaked with blood and shreds of raw flesh. Bloody bits spattered over countertop and tile. Lots and lots of dark red juiciness dripping from the counter, down the sink and the edge of the stove. Kosher salt everywhere.
"It's obvious, Watson."
"What is, Inspector?"
"Murder, Watson. Murder."
"But where's the body, Inspector?"
"It's elementary, my dear Watson. See the blood in the sink?"
"Yessir. Lots of blood. But no body."
"Watson. Look at all these knives . . . the saw . . . the mallet . . . coarse salt. Our killer murdered her victim, probably by slashing his throat. Then she salted him down to drain the blood. She may be Jewish, Watson. The Kosher Killer . . . Hmmmmmm . . . Might be good press in this one - write that down, Watson. Where was I?"
"Draining the blood, sir."
"Ah, yes. After salting and draining her victim, the killer obviously hacked the body into pieces small enough to fit into the garbage disposal, thereby rendering him (no pun intended) into particles of unidentifiable flesh. Could be anything. Watson, stick your hand down that garbage disposal and tell me what you find."
"SHRIIIIIEEEEEEEEKKKKKKKKK!!!!! Something red and sticky, sir! Don't make me do that again! Please, I beg you!"
"Watson! Calm down, Watson! Those are strawberries, not murdered flesh. Hmmmmm. . . We'll need to investigate further. Come, my dear Watson! We'll take these murder weapons down to Scotland Yard for further inspection. Get an evidence bag, Watson."
"Yessir, Inspector. Right away, sir."
Sigh. Sometimes I get carried away. But dinner is going to be flat out awesome!