Saturday, July 17, 2010

Dawn: 0; Food: 1

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Ever have a day where nothing works out in the kitchen? One of the days where you feel like you are working against the food instead of with it?

It all started with these strawberries. We bought them at the farmer's market only to realize that nearly all of them were over-ripe and needed to be used immediately.

So I decided to make some strawberry ice cream. We'll get back to the ice cream later.

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We made oven fries for dinner and forgot to spray the pan/foil before baking.

This resulted in every.single.fry. having to be peeled off (some in pieces) individually.

Also, I pulled out the tray with a knit potholder. I'm not sure why I did this. My thumb popped thru and I now have a blister. I did manage to save the pan of fries from plummeting to the floor. My thumb is currently throbbing.

Mental note: buy some burn cream as I burn myself often.

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These were actually not a failure because B made them and they tasted heavenly. Blue cheese burgers with sweet onion marmalade (that my mom & I made) on top of some fantastic buns.

Wait, there are no buns. We didn't have buns, or lettuce, or tomato.

B had his burger on an English muffin and I had mine on a sandwich thin.

These burgers are 1/3 of a pound (I know, B makes big burgers) and the sandwich thin practically disintegrated as I ate it. Sandwich thins are not made for juicy man-burgers.

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The real failure starts with dessert. I decided to make the strawberry ice cream and thought I might be able to introduce basil. It's a good pairing, I promise.

I heated the cream and custard with basil, strained and then added minced basil as it froze.

Let me tell you what is wrong with this ice cream.

1. You absolutely cannot taste the basil. At all. So weird.

2. Too much strawberry. I know this sounds odd but too much strawberry results in too little sugar and cream. It means that the ice cream was more tart then I like. B likes it and it really isn't bad- it's just not quite right.

So we have tart strawberry ice cream with unknown green flecks.

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I thought maybe I could just make a chocolate sauce to use on my ice cream. I wanted to add a sweetness to the dish because I like my ice cream sweeter than B does. I couldn't taste the basil anyway and really one can't have too much chocolate around the house.

My original recipe yeilds 3 cups of chocolate sauce and since I didn't need 3 cups I thought I might just cut it in half and then send some to my parents. So I started with the base which involves sugar, water and some corn syrup. I used half the amount of what the recipe called for. I let it boil for 5 minutes.

Then I started whisking in my cocoa powder. I dropped the whisk... actually it sort of bizarrely lept out of my hand splattering the kitchen with chocolate molten lava. Do you know how hot boiled sugar concoctions get? I felt quite triumphant when I was able to report to B that I did not burn myself during the explosion.

After clean-up and regaining my composure and a few unsurprised looks from B, I finished mixing in the cocoa.

I did this while holding an ice cube in my right hand. My hand got tired and I leaned it on the skillet sitting on the stove. The stove wasn't hot but the oven was and the cast iron skillet just soaked up the heat. Add a burn to my wrist to the list.

It was then I remembered that I should have halved the cocoa powder. The result?

The result is slightly bitter chocolate sauce. I'm calling it cocoa sauce. This is not a good thing as I'm sure you've at some point tried cocoa powder or bakers chocolate. I mean, I'm not about to waste it but kinda bitter sauce on kinda tart ice cream just doesn't work.

As I was removing it from the heat I felt a stinging in the center of my palm. I'm not sure how but a drop molten lava bitter chocolate must have hurled itself at my open hand.

Add burn to palm to the list.

In the end everything worked out. The fries were fine and the burgers were fantastic. The ice cream is perfect for B and I love it with just a little bit of strawberry preserves as a topping. The chocolate sauce will be blended with some vanilla ice cream and maybe a bit of malt.

Most the evening consisted of B shaking his head and me giggling uncontrollably. We still managed to end up fat and happy.

Ever have one of those days in the kitchen?

12 comments:

  1. I think pregnancy is affecting your skills in the kitchen. Perhaps you should let B work his magic in there until Peanut is born :)

    PS. I feel like I'm being squished :)

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  2. Holy Moly Andy! Believe me, we all have those days. It is just pregnancy brain. I guess I had better stop using that as my excuse though.

    And what in blazes is sweet onion marmalade and how do you make it???

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  3. Toss that knit potholder!! I'm a klutz and I want my potholders to be such that I don't have to be mentally careful in using them. "Thin" just doesn't cut it. And the silicone glove? I donated that to the local thrift shop. Felt like I was wearing a steel-workers mit! lol

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  4. Definitely pregnancy brain! And ditto to the knit pot holders. I've been burned by pot holders so many times it's not even funny!

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  5. Wow--a lot of effort there, even if there were some pitfalls.

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  6. Nice to know even you can have food blunders:)

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  7. I don't know, it looks to me like everything worked out perfectly.

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  8. Girl, sometimes we just have those days!!! I'm making B.L.T's tonight. I don't think a person can mess those up. Adrain wants me to add an avacado. I've never heard of that. Weirdo husband. :)

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  9. I have NEVER had a day like that in the kitchen. Everything I do turns out perfectly. I have no idea what you're talking about...

    Ahem.

    Do you know that stuff like the whisk flying out of your hand happened to me a lot when I was pregnant??? I just got so klutzy in a crazy erratic way. It's this weird pregnancy phenomenon I think.

    This will be haunting me for the next month or so:
    "Blue cheese burgers with sweet onion marmalade". OH my mouth is watering!!!

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  10. It's true, pregancy brain and there's only one cure. : )

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  11. I have those days all the time and I've been cooking for more years than you've been on the planet! It's all part of the fun.. Carry on!

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  12. aww yeah I've definitely had those days. Sometimes I'll try to mix things together thinking it's going to come out tasting fabulous and it doesn't. Famous quote from Match, "I love you honey but this tastes like throw up!"

    Those burgers look delicious.

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