I’m the type of person who is tolerated more so than liked (lots of heads nodding). Mothers-in-law are notoriously difficult (lots of heads nodding emphatically). You might be surprised, then, to learn my mother-in-law has entrusted me with killing her.
My Mother-in-law Wants Me To Kill Her
This is no trivial burden to bear and I find myself both humbled and unsettled. Why choose me? Our relationship is congenial, sure. By pop culture standards one might even say we get along swell. But there is no shortage of loved ones just as capable as I to execute such a deeply personal request; some willing, even eager.
Yet I am who she chose. Not directly, mind you. She hasn’t explicitly asked me to help send her to her maker; to the great beyond; to the endless dirt nap. Some things are too difficult to verbalize directly so we employ metaphor and symbolism. Fear and shame morph us all into English majors in such situations. But I understand. Why else would she routinely ask me to cook this meal whenever she visits?
This meal to which I refer is Pork Schnitzel and Hot German Potato Salad or as I cheerfully call it, Bavarian Suicide. I adore this meal so I happily oblige whenever my mother-in-law requests it. It is delicious and filling and warming; a perfect wintery feast for intimate family gatherings. It also harkens back to my German ancestry, no small concession for a woman of British heritage married to a Dutchman.
As you can see in the picture, I also toss in a side of green beans to add colour as well as give the impression that the meal is somewhat healthy. The beans are drowning in butter so it’s a patently false impression. The beans are also not the source of the bleak nickname I’ve bestowed upon the meal nor the proof that my mother-in-law wishes me to kill her.
That, rather, comes from the fact that not only is this a fried meat dish, but the salad is the only recipe I’ve seen where bacon drippings and scrapings are specifically kept and added to the finished product. Where every other recipe recognizes bacon grease as liquefied heart exploder and quickly encourages the chef to discard it, Hot German Potato Salad not only keeps these typically waste products but defiantly and proudly includes them. The result is a mouthwatering skin moisturizer you ingest and allow to ooze out from your pores rather than slather over your body.
Schnitzel the Size of Church Hymnals
The calorie count for a plate of this fare is best ignored completely lest your digital calculator watch be overtaxed. Granted it’s not as appalling as the schnitzel I devoured in Köln, Germany which was literally the size of church hymnal, but it’ll still run into the four digit range.
Accordingly, I don’t make this meal often and rarely at times outside of family visits. However, it has been fourteen months and counting since my in-laws were last here. The cravings are intensifying as the ground freezes over and the snow starts falling once again. I’m confident my arteries have recovered. A bit, anyway. Enough to risk another attempt at euthanizing my mother-in-law, as is her inevitable wont. Because I understand. Unless…
… she’s trying to set me up for murder.