It was bound to happen sometime....
With as much as I cook, I am actually surprised that it didn't happen sooner.
Last Friday I wanted to try out this yummy Asian Chicken Salad that I had heard about from my friend Yvonne who runs the website www.triedandtasty.com
I also thought it would be good to try it with those little crispy rice noodles that come on Asian dishes....so I went to the store and tried to buy some. Little did I know that they don't come pre-made, you have to cook them yourself to make them puff up and be the way you want them to be when you put them on a dish.
So I went home, put on a small pan of oil, let it heat up, and proceeded to head into the living room to finish an e mail I had started writing before I went to the store to let the oil heat up.
Then, I heard a strange noise....
In my curiosity, I got up and went into the kitchen to see what the noise was.
Apparently the oil had gotten too hot and combusted on itself and started on fire...and everything else that was around it. It started to melt a plastic piece that was on our range hood, hence the noise of the plastic hitting the top of the oven as it fell and splashed oil everywhere.
So I walked in to find a fire flaming higher than our cabinets and melting everything in site. The cabinets were starting to burn so I knew I had to be quick about putting this thing out. I screamed to Chas for help, who happened to be napping in our bedroom and had no idea I was attempting to burn the house down.
Even though it was a grease fire and we knew that it is a no no to put water on oil, we just had to get this thing out fast before it was uncontrollable. So, he ran outside, grabbed a pile of snow (in his skivvies, uh-hum), and dumped it on the main part of the fire.
Lucky for us it worked, but it was too late for the range hood and the smoke had already filled out entire house. Opening up the windows was good to let fresh air in, but it immediately made the soot go everywhere in our house, and we spent the next 4 hours cleaning it off the walls, cabinets, bed, dresser, etc.
I will just say that we are blessed, and very lucky. Blessed that we have such a great landlord who merely laughed and replaced the range hood the next day and supplied us with paint to touch up the ceiling in the kitchen. Lucky that it wasn't worse and neither one of us was hurt and it didn't burn anything worse than it really could have.
Lesson learned. I will never cook with oil like that (ok at least not for a while), and, I will never leave it unattended. Just in case it decides to start fire on itself again in the future.