A Strange Thing Happened on My Way to Domesticity

After you get past the fact that my stove looks like a page out of 60s nostalgia, look closely at the photo. Do you see the broken glass?

So, here’s what happened . . . I was feeling very domestic, so after I made 2 homemade apple pies (from the apple picking outing of last week), I made a large lasagne casserole for dinner on Saturday night. I over loaded the pyrex pan, and, knowing it would run over the sides, I placed it on a cookie sheet to bake.

After 45 minutes at 350 degrees, I removed the casserole from the oven to set for 15 minutes. Then, I served up the casserole in bowls since it was messier than usual. Since it was a laid back Saturday night, we let the kids watch tv while they ate. I left the kitchen with my portion, and I didn’t re-enter the kitchen until I was finished. I was taking my bowl back to the kitchen, and I found glass all over the floor and the casserole dish broken in several places. The casserole explosion didn’t happen until at least 30 minutes after being removed from the oven.

First I double checked that I hadn’t left a stove burner on. No, that wasn’t it. All the burners were off. Ultimately, I guess it happened just because the pyrex couldn’t handle the heat. In addition to the mess to clean up, I was sad because the casserole normally provides for 2+ meals for our family. Needless to say, I didn’t want to try to salvage any for fear of including a piece of glass in someone’s food.

I was thankful this happened while we were all in a different part of the house and none of the kids mindlessly entered the kitchen bare-footed.

It was just strange.

12 thoughts on “A Strange Thing Happened on My Way to Domesticity”

  1. Strange, scary — yes. But the loss of so much good lasagne along with the pyrex piece seems almost tragic to me! I’m very thankful nobody was hurt and that you at least got one serving each before the breakage.

  2. Wow, what a shame. Sounds like something that would happen to me–I’m always having minor disasters in the kitchen. All I have to do is look at a knife and it jumps up and cuts my finger.

    I’d like to learn from this, but I’m not sure what the lesson is… don’t keep a pyrex dish sitting on a hot cookie sheet?

    Anyway, my condolences on the loss of your leftovers and your dish.

  3. How very weird. Jay would certainly agree that the loss of homemade lasagna (his favorite meal!) is a true tragedy. I’m so sorry for the broken dish too, and glad no one was injured in the explosion. Wish I could have a piece of one of your pies!

  4. Mom,

    Yes. I am very sad about the pyrex baking dish. I now have only one.

    I hadn’t thought about it, but perhaps it was the cookie sheet that held in the heat. However, I am not sure how I would have pryed the baking dish from the cookie sheet when it was full of heavy lasagne. Perhaps the lesson is: “Don’t insist on stuffing all the ingredients into one baking dish. If you find yourself with more than you need, make a second small batch of your recipe.”

    Yeah, I know Mark would have enjoyed lasagne in his lunch today on his long day away from the house. He had to settle for chicken salad.

    Re: the pies– I usually don’t bother with a homemade crust because of time, but I actually gave it a whirl. Niether one looked great, but the taste was good. We only cut one of those, so Mark had some pie in his lunch today.

    One last thought–I didn’t mention that Simon, the new dog, was outside at dinner time. He was having some digestive issues because of having eaten too much people food, so we thought it best to put him out while we ate. If he had been inside, he might have gone after to food that fell to the floor with the glass in it.

  5. Major bummer! Homemade lasagna isn’t exactly a 10-minute throw together like I usally do for dinner!

    Glad Simon was outside…you think his diarr…sorry…his “digestive issues” are bad now! Whew, imagine what that glass could have done to his little insides…better yet, don’t!

    I think the lesson is: better to eat in front of the TV than at the kitchen table!! 🙂

  6. Wow! I thought pyrex was *designed* to handle extreme temperature changes… “from the freezer, to the oven, to the table…” Glad you did’t have lasagne a la glass! All the food sounds delicious, though – you always were a good cook!

  7. okay, this is sort of nerdy of me, but this happened to one of my dishes last Christmas when my mom was here. she took a pyrex out of the oven and put it on a cookie sheet and it exploded instantly. so when i ran across a note in a back issue of cooks illustrated with the headline “when pyrex explodes,” naturally i was interested! here’s what it said- “…they are prone to shattering when exposed to sudden and extreme temperature changes. Naturally, this prohibits their use under the broiler or over direct stovetop heat, but the tempered glass bakeware is also vulnerable to sudden drops in temperature, known in the industry as downshock. Downshock would result from adding cold liquid to a hot pyrex dish or from placing a hot dish directly on a cold or wet surface. It is considered safe, however to transfer a Pyrex dish directly from the refrigerator or freezer to a hot oven, provided it has been properly preheated- some ovens use the broiler element to heat up to the desired temp.” That doesn’t explain why it took 30 minutes though. Glad no one was there when it happened, and that you at least got one meal out of it before all the rest was lost!

  8. Abby,

    I appreciate the input. It doesn’t completely explain it to me, but I also regularly look up information on things that puzzle me.

    You know, the stove is from the 60s. Back then, they thought people wanted to do everything with the “push of a button.” So, those buttons are supposed to be for changing from various temperatures. You know, Hi, Med-Hi, Med, Lo. Of course, on my stove only 2 burners work at all, and varying temperatures are not even in the equation.

    We do have a “new” stove just like this one in our garage. It is probably about 20 years newer that our brown one, and it is white. We bought it for $50 from a little old lady in Des Peres. It came with the range hood, too. We just haven’t installed it yet. The stove goes into a weird little compartment in the cabinetry, so it isn’t as easy to replace as a free-standing stove.

    I looked in to getting a new stove to fit in the weird little compartment, but the price was out of our realm.

    The good news is that the original brown stove came with only one rack. When we bought the “new” white stove, it came with 2. So at least we can now put more than one thing in the 22-inch wide stove at one time.

    Now that I wrote you a book after your simple question, you will never comment on my blog again.

  9. I know I already commented above, but your notes about your 60’s stove with its push buttons that don’t really help perform the functions it was originally designed to perform reminds me a bit fondly (just a teeny bit, mind you!) of our vintage dishwasher, which we just this week said farewell to. It had push buttons galore, none of which did much anymore, except to further increase the already rather loud volume of it running through its ineffective “wash” cycle. But it was supposed to have been a really top-notch dw in its day…er, decade, also the 60’s!

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