Friday, August 15, 2008

Cooking Failures

Something is happening to me . . . and it's not good. I am rapidly losing my skills in the kitchen. I've never claimed to be a master chef. But, I am creative and have consistently put good, (mostly) healthy meals on the table for years for my family. Witness the downward spiral . . .

Disaster #1: During our first trip to a Canadian grocery store we were confused and overwhelmed. We wondered why the yogurt was so expensive - and didn't realize until our next trip that we had shopped in the Kosher section. It was also an honest mistake when we bought "Low Fat Old Cheddar." I didn't see the "low fat" part but assume "old cheddar" indicated a sharp cheese (my personal favorite). So, when I tried to make a cheese-based soup a few days later . . . I was very confused when the cheese didn't melt as I was expecting. Instead it formed hard globs of a glue-like consistency. Both Autumn and Jeff tried sawing at the globs with their spoons . . . bless their little hearts . . . before I gave them full permission to dump the bowls into the trash (or, in what was our pre-garbage disposal period, into the sink-side organic waste bin).

Disaster #2: Believe it or not, I attempted soup again - albeit a different recipe. This one was not entirely my fault . . . I did make the mistake of adding flour directly to the soup for thickening (idiotic, I know . . . Mom you taught me much better!) So, despite the little hard nuggets of floating flour globs, it was going to be an edible meal . . . until Autumn had a meltdown and I spent a little too long in her bedroom 'talking it out.' Burnt soup. Definitely not edible.

Disaster #3: Even when I try new recipes . . . they never turn out this bad. How hard could Sweet and Sour Chicken be, you say? Apparently too difficult for me. It took so long to prepare that I didn't even waste time adding vegetables. The runny sauce tasted like rice vinegar (nothing sweet, nothing sour) and the rice (always perfect in my pressure cooker) was a soupy mess. I actually attempted to strain both the rice and the sauce. Yes, gross.

Disaster #4: Fajita night. I had cut the chicken ahead of time and we had fresh onions, portabello mushrooms and red peppers ready to go. Things were going well and the chicken and vegetables were perfectly grilled . . . until I dumped the McCormick Fajita dry mix packet into the pan. I've used it before and it was fabulous. As I was dumping it in, I immediately knew something was wrong. I tried to dismiss the idea that the entire meal now smelled like detergent. I even tried to choke down a piece of chicken while thinking happy fajita thoughts. And, before I dumped the entire meal down the garbage disposal (yea!) . . . I had Jeff try a bite and confirm my fears. Yes. Detergent. Possibly poison. Maybe worse.

So, that's it. I'm at a cross-roads. I can put back on the apron or settle for breakfast food every night (Jeff's specialty). If I make a few more meals like these . . . my family might make the choice for me.

And . . . as a sidenote . . . I opened the second McCormick Fajita packet in our pantry (both purchased in Heber) and confirmed the same detergent smell. Jeff did call McCormick and they are sending us some free coupons.


  1. at least you attempt to cook, meals around here consist of cereal and papa murphys pizza. Hopefully 6 months down the road I can do it again but for now, it is what it is. That's funny though.

  2. Don't give up! You are a wonderful cook. You gotta love nights like that when you know that your hubby is just waiting for you to give him the go ahead and throw it away. I always know it's bad when Aaron reaches for the hot sauce & doesn't stop.

  3. So funny! I'm glad I'm not the only one who does things like this. Kirk really has taken over in the kitchen so he can eat a good meal.

    Hope you are doing well! We sure miss seeing you around!

  4. So funny! I'm glad I'm not the only one who does things like this. Kirk really has taken over in the kitchen so he can eat a good meal.

    Hope you are doing well! We sure miss seeing you around!

  5. I know you can cook better than what you are trying to serve those poor little souls. I know I have gained a few pounds on your cooking. Although now I could handle a few of your disaters. Straight from the pot to the disposal unit without ever passing my lips. Keeps the weight off.
    I have not heard any disaters about southern fried chicken or southern fried steak or black eye peas or spoon bread or stewed tomatoes. I am going to have to stop now and find me something to eat. It will have to be some more cucumbers. Eva planted my whole garden with cucumbers so I have no choice but cucumbers.

    Love Dad.