When I decided to make Sloppy Joes for the family I really should have checked to see if we had all the ingredients. My bad.
Missing were two standards to the recipe, Worcestershire sauce and steak seasoning. But I went ahead and browned the chuck, mixed in the tomato paste, substituted onion powder for the real thing, sprinkled in the brown sugar, had no peppers, forgot the mustard and then tried to pull off culinary alchemy by adding some Italian seasonings, a little smoked paprika, garlic, more onion powder and a little chili powder.
Everyone was starving when dinner was finally served and I thought maybe I had pulled it off until my wife said something ambiguous like, “These don’t taste right….what did you do?”
“Oh, just made ‘em special” I replied with nonchalance.
“Well”, she continued, “they’re not too bad. They just don’t taste like Sloppy Joes.”
And it was at this point that my youngest son looked up and asked, “You mean this isn’t the spaghetti sauce from last night.”