Whenever Les and I are cooking together, I am a stickler for following the recipe, but he'll throw a dash of something in that's not included in the recipe and he'll say, "It's a recipe--not a law!"
Some amusing anecdotes of why I think it should be a "law":
1. My friend Jenny does not cook and she was telling me that she loved Key Lime Pie. I told her it was easy to make and gave her my recipe. She looked at it and said, "Whenever it says to separate eggs I know it's not easy!"
2. My husband's nephew's wife did not cook and he loves my homemade vegetable soup and I invited them to dinner when I fixed it. The nephew asked, "Aunt Sue, will you tell her how to make vegetable soup?" I proceeded to tell her to get a cheap cut of roast and "boil the Hell out of it" for broth. She asked, "Exactly how much time does boiling the hell out of it take?"
3. A friend wanted my recipe for Lemon Meringue Pie and when I e-mailed it, I wrote to use the "zest" of the lemon and she thought I meant to write the "rest" of the lemon; unfortunately, as you can imagine, her pie was not successful.
4. My friend Bobbi's daughter not only roasted a turkey with the giblet package inside--which I have heard of others' doing--but she also fixed a pot roast with the blood package still attached to the bottom and she wondered why her family got sick!
5. The first time I made gravy I put in too much flour and I ended up emptying the gravy from the skillet to a pot and then to another pot as I kept adding milk; I used an entire gallon of milk!
6. When my friend's Bobbi's daughter was 10, she was visiting with me and she stayed for dinner. When she went home her mother asked what we'd had for dinner and she said that everything was good but that I had NUTS on my noodles. Bobbi told her that couldn't be true because she had eaten my noodles before, but when Bobbi asked me I said, "I had Noodles Almondine!"
7. During the Blizzard, we ran out of fresh meat, but we had canned meat like Spam and corned beef. My mother made chili using the corned beef and we all thought it was delicious! For all the years afterward, we would talk about the corned beef chili and how great it was. Finally about thirty years later, we were surprised to have a big pot of corned beef chili and it was just plain AWFUL!
8. My sister-in-law was known for her wonderful home-made bread. One time, feeling like Lady Bountiful, she sent a loaf home with one of her son's friends. The next time she saw the boy she asked how the family liked the bread and he answered, "It was almost as good as Pennington's!"
9. I was talking to my former sister-in-law who was from Texas and she was mentioning what a terrific cook my mother was except for that "sweet stuffing" she made. I protested that my mother never made "sweet stuffing" and she answered that she always served it after dinner. It was then I realized that she had confused BREAD PUDDING with stuffing!
10. As a young married, I saw salt fish on sale at Kroger. As we both love fish, I bought a package and it looked like a nice white fish. What I didn't know was that the fish is supposed to be SOAKED overnight to take out the salt! It was inedible!