Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Something Smells....Onion-y

Because I have recently graduated from college, and due to this lovely recession we are experiencing I've started to play a daily game called "What's The Least Amount of Money I Can Spend" (Creative, I know).

Preferring not to go through my bank statements and highlighting the unnecessary buys, therefore sparing myself the shameful remorse from things like $10 lattes and $15 lunches, I decided to just halt all spending possible.

A bit drastic, yes, but I tend to be more responsive to "full stop" efforts rather than simply cutting back. Rent and bills don't count, obviously, otherwise I would be kicked to the curb in about a month.

I just assumed, and rightly so, that most of my money goes towards food. Well, and drinks. Alcoholic drinks. Eating out and going out are two ways to deplete the bank account.

So as a result Neighborhood Walmart has become my new best friend and I've become somewhat unsocial.

The upside (besides spending less) is that I've gotten into cooking. Nowhere near gourmet, but just basic home cooked meals that have yet to end in disaster. During this recent development I decided to bust out the old crock pot and give it a whirl. I went with trusty beef stew as my first one-pot meal.

Here is the recipe, courtesy of (this is an exercise, so pay attention):

4 carrots
3 potatoes peeled and cut into cubes
1 stalk celery, cut
1 diced onion
a pinch of paprika
1 1/2 cups of beef broth
1 tablespoon of Worchestire sauce
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 bay leaf
2 pounds beef
Now. Which one of these items do you think ruined the next couple of days for me?

The culprit = 1 diced onion.

First of all, a whole onion?! Really, That's a lot of onion. I'm downright disappointed in myself that I doubted my instincts and followed the recipe. I actually hate onions (unless they are onion rings, in which case they are delicious) but I figured it would add flavor and I should just get over it. Wrong.

Second, I stupidly decided to put the ingredients in at 8pm and let it cook while I sleep, planning to take it out at 8am and then voila! I can take some to work for lunch. Well, at 2am Lola decides to take a running leap over my body and dart around the room in a burst of hyperactivity, causing me to bolt out of bed in a frenzy. In the process, my nose catches a whiff of something...unpleasant. I open my door and wham! the stench of too much cooked onion slaps me in the face. You would think I would decide to abandon the beef stew idea right then and there, but no. Being somewhat still asleep I merely thought it would just die down as it continued to cook. HA!

For the next 6 hours I dreamed about onions, smelled onions, and felt like I was sleeping in an onion.

By 8am I was most definitely not taking beef stew to work for lunch. Nor did I want to eat it for dinner. Or, really, ever again.

Sitting at my desk a few hours later I feel as if I am carrying multiple onions in my pockets, purse, and maybe even one hidden in my hair.

I stroll up to the receptionist and waft some of the air around me towards her.

Me: Do you smell that?
R: Smell what?
Me: I don't know, anything, what do I smell like when I'm standing near you?
R: I don't smell anything.
Me: Are you sure?? I don't smell like beef stew, or...(practically spitting the word out) onion?
R: Um, no.

I decide it's just me. A few hours later I meet up with my boyfriend.

Boyfriend: You smell funky.
Me: (groan)
Boyfriend: (wrinkles nose) Why do you smell like food?

A few tablespoons of salt, spoonful of peanut butter, two hands rubbed raw, and a shower later, I think I have succeeded in getting rid of _____ (I cannot even bring myself to say the name now).

Today, I put on my clothes for work and the rank smell is back. Or it never left. My apartment is hoarding the onion smell and every item belonging to me reeks. I detest, no, loathe, beef stew. I will never eat it again. I will also not go within 6 feet of an onion for a very.long.time. And I'm wary of the crock pot.

How did attempting to be frugal land me in this mess? And yes, I still smell like onions. Any suggestions how to forever rid myself of the atrocity that is inhabiting my apartment, clothes, hair, and fingers? Anyone?

post signature


  1. Sorry about the onion-mishap... I have no clue how to get the onion smell out, unfortunately. However, I too hate the smell, so whatever you find out, let us know!

  2. Stopped in from SITS! I totally understand what you're saying about the cooking rather than eating out! The problem is once you get good at cooking, eating out gets harder b/c it has to be a really good restaurant (not fancy, but GOOD food you couldn't make at home.)

  3. Your blog smells like onions. :P This is a big reason I don't have curtains in my house. They just hold onto the food stench. Sorry but no real suggestions except to try to air the place out. Yes, I realize it's the wrong time of year for open windows. The smell that always gets me is bacon. We can make just 2 slices of bacon and the house smells of it for a week.

  4. Wow, that's intense. Or at least the smell of onions is intense. All I can suggest is to air your apt out, get some yankee candles, and that's about all I can think of. Good luck girlie. Have you went back to eating out?

  5. I know I shouldn't laugh... but I can't help it. Get some charcoal (the pulverized kind works best but even non-treated bbq charcoal works) and let it sit out. It absorbs smells better than baking soda (more surface area).

    And next time, check out the reviews of recipes before you make them. Frequently, they have many suggestions of things people have done to change them that work out well. And if you need recipes... I've got new pretty easy ones each Tuesday.

    Oh -- and you can still go out. Just drink water instead of alcohol. It's not so bad; I've done it.

    And thank you so much for coming to visit my blog. Today has been so much fun and so lovely to see the response and fun comments. I really appreciate it. I hope you enjoyed my blog and come back to visit soon!

  6. Oh my gosh Sloane. I'm laughing so hard... I'm so sorry. I've got tons of receipes if you want some :)

  7. A.: I've discovered that baking soda helps. I put it in small bowls around my apartment. I hopefully won't ever have to do this again since I will never eat beef stew again ;)

    The Blonde Duck: Yes, eating in definitely helps in saving money for sure. Except in this case, since I threw all of the beef stew out without even taking a bite. Just thinking about taking a bite grosses me out. Ew. Thanks for stopping by from SITS!

    Call Me Cate: Your comment made me laugh, you're so witty :-)

    Femme Star: No, I haven't gone back to eating out cause this has been the only cooking disaster so far. And I hope the last.

    Michelle: It's ok to laugh, I think it's funny now that I'm looking back at it :-) I think I've got most of the smell out of my apartment with baking soda and open windows, but I might try the charcoal thing anyway. Thanks for taking the time to check out my blog! I loved yours!

    Dara: I bet you're kind of glad we had to cancel dinner tonight, huh? I might have made YOUR house smell like onions! haha, just kidding. I think I'm stink free now, thank goodness.

  8. i would suggest investing in fabreeze, but it might not be in the budget.

  9. Oh, Brooke, Febreeze has been an attached 3rd arm the past week. Check out my latest post for the stuff that works ;-)

  10. Oh honey, I'm laughing - so sorry!!

    Your writing was so descriptive though, I could smell it all the way across town.

    Next time try red onion, or better yet, a can of Chunky Beef Stew. Target has it on sale this week for $1.00/can. Wise investment.