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Fire Alarms & Pot Roast

March 15, 2011


Sitting here trying to write/type/keyboard amidst the noise & all of a sudden the smoke detector/fire alarm is screaming! Off I run to the control panel for the security system, following the instructions to bypass the alarm & shut it down – nothing happens – the alarm continues to scream. I unplug the silly thing from the wall – it continues to scream. I grab a phone to call the local number on the outside of the official looking locked wall panel – “this number is no longer in service.” I call the phone number on the outside of the boxier official looking locked wall panel – it’s an “1-800” number – there is hope. A real human being answered the phone, suggested I unplug it from the wall. Been there, done that. She put me on hold while she located the person who could help me. Lovely Mozart streaming through the phone – ahhh. Finally Hope (really!) answers the phone – she said that if the wall plugs were unplugged to open the boxy panel & unplug the wires from the 9-volt-looking black battery. I did & there was silence. Finally.


Not for long – hammer, hammer, nail gun, pop, saw, saw, nail gun, pop.


Firehouse Pot Roast

This is a recipe from The Firefighter’s Cookbook, published in 1986 to benefit the New York Firefighter’s Burn Center Foundation.


  • Flour for dredging
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 3 1/2 – 4 lbs. fresh brisket (1st cut)
  • 3 Tbsp. salad oil
  • 1/3 tsp. thyme
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 cups canned tomatoes (undrained)
  • 1/2 tsp. powdered ginger


  1. Mix flour, salt & pepper.
  2. Dredge meat in the seasoned flour.
  3. Heat salad oil in a Dutch oven, add the meat, and brown well on all sides.
    Pour off fat.
  4. Add thyme, onion, and garlic.
  5. Stir until the onion begins to brown, then add the tomatoes and ginger.
  6. Cover tight and simmer until tender (about 2 1/2 hours).
  7. Remove to a heated platter.
  8. Thicken gravy, if desired, with a little flour mixed with water.
  9. Serve with either buttered noodles or mashed potatoes.

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