Good Receipes Gone Bad (alternative Title: Cooking Disasters)

Today I'm going to post something a little different. Most of the recipes on this blog are posted after we have tested them and actually come up with a recipe that works. Admittedly, some of these things work out the first time we try them, others do not. We never show you the dirty side of being a true cook. We never talk about when things...well...just don't work out. I'll be the first to admit that I am much more of a baker than I am a cook. Don't get me wrong, I can pull together a great meal, but I bake and create works of sweetness with much more ease and comfort. I made perfect Chocolate Souffles the first time I tried, on a whim, one night, with nothing but a recipe from a chocolate cookbook I have on hand and some leftover chocolate. I'm always a little uneasy when I am cooking something for the first time, and I will NEVER cook something big for the first time for other people. I always try out my dishes first. For those of you that read my other blog (That Kind of Girl), the dish that I first made when Memphis came over, I tried out the night before. So yes, that means I bought enough for 2 separate versions of the dish, and yes, it means I actually had leftovers from my first attempt (which worked out quite well) in the fridge while I was cooking the second attempt for him. I even do this with new recipes because I've found, that sometimes, every once in a while, even if you follow a recipe to a tee, it just doesn't work out. This is what happened the other night and I thought I would share with you home cooks out there my disaster because I want you to all know, messing up is half the fun. And sometimes, messing up means creating a whole new piece of art in the kitchen. Other times it means throwing away a whole lot of food because things just did not work out. I realize, especially being on a budget, that can be a hard thing to face. And I have, on occasion (like with this attempt) ate it anyways. But never in a million years would have fed it to someone else.

A few days (weeks?) ago, I was at Shannon's house getting my fix of the Food Network (I am cable-tv-less and get my fix of cable tv at her house). Paula Dean in all her magic was on tv and was making this receipe for Squash and Zucchini Cakes and I thought that those looked like an awesome way for me to incorporate 2 vegetable that I could otherwise care less for into my life (you know the rule "fry it, therefore it is good"). Only I thought I could make it with a Chipotle Ranch dip...because Ranch makes everything better. Hey, I never said I was a healthy cook most of the time all of the time. One of the things that they don't tell you in the recipe is to squeeze the shredded squash and zucchini in between paper towels to remove a lot of the moisture before cooking. Paula did however mention this on the show. APPARENTLY I did not squeeze enough of the moisture out because my cakes did not look like hers (go look at the Food Network picture)....nope, mine looked like this:

Ok, so besides the greasiness factor, you can't really get the full affect of my 'cakes'. They looked kind of crispy on the outside, but no, they were a mushy mess that was barely held together by the egg/breadcrumb mixture you add. They did taste quite good, if you could get over the baby-food texture. And then I threw away the other half of the mixture because I couldn't face it. It was 11 pm and I was just eating my 'dinner'. And as a side note, the whole 'Chipotle Ranch dip" idea didn't work out so well either. I am going to attempt to make them again, but have decided to try baking them first to remove some of the moisture, then frying them for the crispiness factor.

However, I did manage to throw this together in about 5 minutes (with 20 minutes of cooking):
Summer Fruit Crisp with Flaxseed and Pecan Crust

So needless to say, THIS is what I really ate for dinner that night. And THIS is what my kitchen looked like at the end of the night:

Hey, I never said anything about being a tidy chef! My motto has always been "A messy kitchen is the sign of a successful meal" (even if it was only half true this night!).

1 comment:

Shannon's mom said...

I love to do dishes I will work for some of that sweet stuff any time.