I know the world would be a boring place if we all thought alike. I often wonder what makes a person “tick.” What makes them think and act the way they do?

I recently read about a contest that was held titled “What’s The Most Outrageous Thing You Would Do?” A 19-year-old university student beat out 6,000 competitors for the $10,000 prize when he decided to eat a tree.

He donned a tuxedo and sat at an elegantly set table complete with china and candles and began to eat an 11-foot birch tree. His pruning shears cut the tree branch by branch all the way from the topmost leafy twigs to the tree’s roots. He used French salad dressing to help wash it down. Eating the tree took 18 hours over the course of three days. After winning the contest, he said that as trees go, birch isn’t that bad. Then, he complained about an upset stomach.

Michael Lotito is known as “Mister Eat-Anything.” He has made a living by consuming used items such as glass, metal and more for the last 50 years. We all need iron in our diets, but he pushes the limit by consuming 2 pounds of metal each day. He has eaten bicycles, televisions and even supermarket carts. Before each performance, he drinks lots of mineral oil and consumes a great amount of water during his “meal.” He takes apart whatever he is eating and takes piece by piece and gulps it down. He once ate an airplane. It took him two years before the last “bite” was finished.

Doctors have discovered that he has quite a unique stomach. The lining in his stomach is twice as thick as a normal stomach lining. The acids in his stomach are unusually powerful. Don’t try this at home!

Hope you enjoy this week’s recipes. Thanks for reading.


1 pound ground beef

1 cup coarsely chopped onion

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 (16-ounce) cans red kidney beans, drained

2 (16-ounce) can black beans, drained

2 (16-ounce) cans Ro-Tel Tomatoes, undrained

2 (16-ounce) cans yellow and white kernel corn, drained

1 (1-ounce) package taco seasoning mix

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon pepper

2 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

Toppings: sour cream and shredded cheddar cheese

Brown ground beef, onion and garlic in a large Dutch oven, stirring often. Drain and add next seven ingredients and 4 cups water. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce. Simmer for 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Stir in cilantro before serving. Serve with desired toppings.


1 (7-ounce) package vermicelli

3 cups chopped cooked chicken

1 (8-ounce) package sliced fresh mushrooms

½ stick butter

1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

1 can cream of mushroom soup

1 (16-ounce) prepared Alfredo sauce

½ cup chicken broth

¼ cup white wine

2 flat cans chopped green chiles

1 small jar diced pimiento, drained

1 cup frozen green peas

½ teaspoon pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, melt butter and saute’ mushrooms for about five minutes. Stir in chicken, Parmesan cheese and all remaining ingredients. Spoon mixture into a lightly greased baking dish. Top with additional Parmesan cheese, and bake for 30 minutes or until bubbly.


2 cans cream of mushroom soup

1 (16-ounce) container cottage cheese

1 (12-ounce) jar roasted red peppers, drained and cut into strips

4 cups chopped cooked chicken

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

½ cup chopped fresh basil

1 teaspoon black pepper

9 no-boil lasagna noodles

4 cups shredded Italian five-blend cheese

Mix soup and next six ingredients in a large bowl. Layer three lasagna noodles on bottom of lightly greased 13-by-9-inch baking dish. Spoon and spread one-third of the soup mixture on noodles. Sprinkle with one-third of the cheese. Repeat layers three times. Bake covered at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Uncover and bake for 15 more minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

• Contact Lee Ann Flemming at lafkitchen@hughes.net.

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