Give me life, liberty and toilet paper; As an American, in this post-COVID-19 obsessed world, that’s all I really want right now.
It appears we now live in a world chock full paranoia over COVID-19. People are just nuts. In our mountain resort town, yesterday our ski resorts closed, a month early for the ski season. It’s so frustrating as that will drastically hurt our local economy and we have two feet of snow in the weather forecast for tomorrow! It does not make sense to me as wouldn’t you be at least six feet away from people if you are skiing or snowboarding? Getting outside, whether it’s hiking, mountain biking or skiing seems like a great option, to me, in a world where all the malls, Disneyland and movie theaters are closed. Maybe this Coronavirus will be good for our technology-obsessed world in the long run. Maybe people will actually get off their couches and get out onto the hiking trails and woods of this great planet of ours.
In my world, Coronavirus is becoming a real pain in my ass. A week ago I went to Costco to buy wine at ten a.m. when they opened. It was a Friday and when I pulled up there were fifty people waiting out front with big ass Costco shopping carts. I figured this was normal for a Friday at Costco. By the time they opened, there were three hundred people waiting to get in! It was insane! I went straight to the wine, and the nuts and the cheese, as any normal person would, while everyone else grabbed as many toilet papers as they could shove in their big ass Costco shopping carts.
A Costco employee even yelled at me for “Going the wrong way” into the toilet paper area. This isn’t a freeway entrance! It’s the paper goods area of Costco! I didn’t even look twice at the toilet paper as we had some at home. I was not concerned. Now looking back at that moment, as we only have six rolls of toilet paper left in our house I’m starting to panic a bit. Because there is literally no toilet paper to be had in this rural mountain town I live in.
I went to the grocery store today in our ski town, on a Saturday morning, something I never, ever do. I try to stay away from the places the tourists go on the weekends. I got to the market at eight a.m. and every parking space was full and I got the last shopping cart. This is just insane, I thought.
Now let me say, I am not going to be that person who is buying every damn box of Kleenex and all the toilet paper but we are also smart and we watch the news and whole cities in New York State are being quarantined. All we need is for that to happen in our town. It could easily happen anywhere and we could also be self-quarantined for a month. I just want enough toilet paper, I mean one package so we don’t have to use a pee rag!
I mean I am a hiker and a camper. I have been known to use a pee rag while on a twenty-two mile hike out in the woods. We are lucky and we do have bidets in all our bathrooms in our home but having toilet paper in my bathroom is a luxury I think I deserve because I am an American and I live in a first-world country. I’ve peed in a hole in the ground in a stinky bathroom in India, with no toilet paper more times then I can count and it’s just unreasonable to think we live in a world here in the United States where toilet paper has become a luxury.
India. Riding camels on the beach and using disgusting bathrooms with no TP.
At the maddening crazy grocery market in our hometown of Big Bear Lake yesterday, I was told if I want toilet paper I have to get in line an hour before the store opens, at five a.m. It doesn’t even get light now until close to six-thirty a.m. That means standing out in the twenty-six degree cold for an hour just to buy toilet paper! Does this not seem insane to anyone else?
What does the Coronavirus, a TP shortage and self-quarantine have to do with this awesome keto macaroni and cheese? Even before Costco started limiting the amount of toilet paper you can buy, I was scouring the shelves of every local Costco for these amazing hot links. They are just Farmer John’s hot links but they are just fantastic. I recommend for sure using Trader Joe’s cream cheese in this recipe also as their cream cheese is much higher quality than that crap Philadelphia brand.
The other way I bring this recipe full circle back to the Coronavirus pandemic is this is the time to eat healthily and treat your body like a temple. Okay maybe I fill my temple full of cheese but I also add lots of healthy veggies like cauliflower! You can also do this with broccoli. Use your favorite brand of hot links but I prefer these Farmer John ones. If you are self-quarantined in your home, enjoying the unlimited supply of toilet paper and looking for a healthy keto recipe, you should whip up some of this easy gluten-free “Mac and cheese” tonight!
Cauliflower “Macaroni” and Cheese with Spicy Hot Links
1 bag cauliflower florets
3 cloves roasted garlic, chopped
1 cup cream cheese
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon white pepper
2 teaspoons ghee
Farmer John hot links, chopped into bite-size pieces
2 cups sharp cheddar cheese
3 teaspoons parsley
1/4 cup spicy pork rinds, crushed
Cook the cauliflower in boiling water 3 minutes. Add to an ice bath and set aside.
In a saucepan melt the ghee and add the garlic. Cook just a few minutes. Add the hotlink pieces and stir until browned. Remove the hotlink pieces and set aside. Add the milk, and the cream cheese to the pan on the stove and stir until melted. Add paprika and white pepper. Stir in one and a half cups of the cheddar until melted.
Spoon the sauce in a baking pan over the cauliflower and hot links. Add the last half cup of cheddar to the top of the dish. Bake at 375 for 15 minutes until the cheese is melted. Turn the broiler on to high, cover the top of the dish with the crumbled pork rinds and broil two minutes, just until toasted. When baked, garnish with the chopped parsley.