Cooking

Because that novel isn't going to delay itself

Cooking

Postby bcomet » 11 Jan 2011, 15:14

I went on this adventure to cook a Malaysian dish. It was pretty interesting. A lot like researching a book. I had to learn about ingredients I had never heard of before and how to handle them. (Thank goodness for u-tube. It's like cooking school in little bites.)

Finally, I made my dish.

It took me two-three weeks of research and six hours in the kitchen (with only one lost pot: the teflon came off... and one lost ingredient that had to be replaced and redone because of that).

My husband loved it. Had three helpings.

What I learned:

1. Cooking can be a good adventure.
2. There is such a thing as too much chili pepper.
3. One can overdo lemongrass.
4. I hate everything coconut! coconut milk, coconut flakes, toasted coconut, coconut oil. Yuck yuck.

Any recent/old good cooking stories or adventures?
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Re: Cooking

Postby stephmcgee » 11 Jan 2011, 16:18

I'm with you on most things coconut. But Red Lobster's coconut shrimp tastes like donuts. They're delish.

I spent a semester in culinary school. It's not for the faint of heart.

Recently, I attempted a Chinese noodle dish. Not so successful. Oh well. Nothing as dramatic as losing a pot, but it just wasn't tasty. I blogged about it at my food blog where I'm chronicling a slow-paced journey to teach myself some new dishes, new cuisines, etc.

It sounds like you had a lot of fun, but 6 hours in the kitchen? Yikes! I'd love to hear more about the dish.
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Re: Cooking

Postby bcomet » 11 Jan 2011, 17:25

We had to go to five different specialty stores to find all the ingredients.
Some very bizarre (to me anyway).

It was really fun, actually. All these strange thingys and then learning what to do with them.
(Like I said, thank goodness for u-tube and the internet! I had to look up all these different sites just to identify what to do with what!)

Much prep was required. Probably would have taken an experienced cook an hour, but prep alone took me two and a half hours.

Then the adding things together, which included eight steps. Then the cooktime which was around three or more hours. My goodness, my kitchen has never smelled so fragrant.

But, as I said, coconut... I will never cook with it again as it seems to upset me, but as coconut goes, my husband loved the dish.
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Re: Cooking

Postby stephmcgee » 11 Jan 2011, 19:42

Ah, a slow-cooked dish. That explains it. It sounds like it was amazingly delicious.
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Re: Cooking

Postby cheekychook » 11 Jan 2011, 21:43

I cook a lot. A lot. Like a lot, a lot. My two biggest culinary disasters involved burning sugar.

Disaster one: Baking cookies that required the balls of cookie dough to be rolled in powdered sugar BEFORE baking. Rolled them, coated them in sugar, placed them on the cookie sheet, placed the cookie sheet in the oven, watched in horror as 3 of the balls from the furthest back row rolled right off the sheet onto the bottom of the oven. Powdered sugar burns. Quickly. And smokes. A LOT. And it's nearly impossible to reach into the back of a 400degree oven. Chaos ensued. Smoke alarms sounding. Small children crying. Cats scattering. Black smoke billowing. It wasn't good. (Note: I still make those cookies but now I bake them on a rimmed cookie sheet and I am oh-so-careful when I place it in the oven!)

Disaster two: I make this awesome pork roast with a maple/dijon mustard/cider vinegar glaze. Everyone likes it so much I always make sure to cook enough for leftovers. The glaze is amazing. Sweet, tangy, shiny, translucent. I had a good-sized bowl of it left over one night and popped it into the microwave to reheat it. I thought I set the timer for one minute and thirty seconds. THOUGHT. I went into my husbands office to talk to him. A few moments passed. We both said "Do you smell smoke?" I had actually set the microwave for thirteen minutes ( 1:30 apparently left my fingers as 13:00). Once again, kids crying, smoke alarm blaring, black smoke billowing, only this time there was a full-on pyrotechnics show in the microwave to accompany it all. It was January. It was 17 degrees out. We had to open all the windows to get the smoke out of the house. It took hours. The microwave, sadly, did not survive this episode. Now when I make this still-favorite pork roast I stand and stare at the microwave the entire time I reheat the sauce. At least I learn!
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Re: Cooking

Postby Watcher55 » 11 Jan 2011, 21:48

Pyrex
Roast
350 degree oven
Needs water
POP
Mickey Dee's anybody?
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Re: Cooking

Postby bcomet » 11 Jan 2011, 22:04

I knew that writers would have the best food/cooking stories. (I have been to a couple of the holiday parties here.)

Too Funny!

I try to serve novel appropriate food to my crit group when my novel is up too. Theme food. My last crit involved dark chocolate brownies, chocolate and raspberry ice cream, and raspberry soda. Decadent. Decadent.
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Re: Cooking

Postby Sommer Leigh » 12 Jan 2011, 07:04

I HATE coconut! I can't even stand the way it smells, and I really can't stand the texture of it. It is wrong on so many levels. Yuck! Yuck!

Christmas night I was making dinner for my husband and myself and I was making au gratin potatoes in a new pyrex dish I received as a Christmas present. We were sitting on the couch watching Inception as everything cooked when there was a big explosion. My brand new pyrex dish exploded all over the oven. I'd been sick with the flu for days before and I was finally getting my appetite back. I wanted those cheesy potatoes more than ANYTHING else I was making. It was so tragic.

But! Happy story! This last sunday I got it into my head that I wanted BBQ pulled pork sandwiches. I don't know why, I don't like pork. I don't like much meat. But my tastes have been changing lately and for whatever reason, this is what I wanted.

So I vaguely remembered a recipe of pulled pork sandwiches that I'd liked ok. A quick search on Allrecipes.com gave me my inspiration. I got a pork shoulder, put it into my crock pot, filled the crock pot to cover the pork with 3 small bottles of A&W rootbeer, and set to cook on high for 6 hours.

6 hours later the meat was so tender it literally melted and fell apart when touched. I drained the liquid, shredded the pork, and added only a little Sweet Baby Ray's Brown Sugar and Hickory BBQ sauce. Only a little because the meat was so delicious and flavorful it was kind of unnecessary. So delicious! We ate them with coleslaw and roasted red potatoes with roasted garlic cloves. My husband has already requested more this coming weekend. I highly recommend. Delicious!!!
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Re: Cooking

Postby bcomet » 12 Jan 2011, 11:22

Sommer Leigh wrote:I HATE coconut! I can't even stand the way it smells, and I really can't stand the texture of it. It is wrong on so many levels. Yuck! Yuck!


Totally with you.

An explosion during Inception? (playing Twilight Zone––the tv show––music)

Root Beer? Wow, I would never have thought of that!
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Re: Cooking

Postby Robin » 12 Jan 2011, 14:55

Sounds like a grueling task- 6 hours cooking. I only do that for Thanksgiving. Not a huge fan of Coconut milk, unless its in curry and done the right way.

Off topic a little: Hey Cheeky, Did you ever post that chocolate cake recipe? Its been haunting me for a few weeks.
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Re: Cooking

Postby Watcher55 » 12 Jan 2011, 16:14

I eat coconut right out of the bag. I tried to eat a coconut once, but I ruined three peelers - that's why I buy it in the bag.
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Re: Cooking

Postby bcomet » 12 Jan 2011, 19:51

Robin wrote:Off topic a little: Hey Cheeky, Did you ever post that chocolate cake recipe? Its been haunting me for a few weeks.


I so agree. What a picture! Yummmm!
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Re: Cooking

Postby cheekychook » 12 Jan 2011, 21:16

Robin wrote:Sounds like a grueling task- 6 hours cooking. I only do that for Thanksgiving. Not a huge fan of Coconut milk, unless its in curry and done the right way.

Off topic a little: Hey Cheeky, Did you ever post that chocolate cake recipe? Its been haunting me for a few weeks.


I didn't post it yet, but I'm planning to post it as one of the recipes on my blog. Probably not for a few weeks, though. If it's a chocolate cake emergency and you need it now PM me.

Same goes for you bcomet.

:)
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Re: Cooking

Postby dios4vida » 14 Jan 2011, 15:36

I was raised by an amateur chef. When I was a kid we would regularly eat a different, new meal every night without repeats for months on end. I have a Rolodex full of recipes from all nations with many, many different flavor profiles. I rarely have the energy to cook these days, but I'm a pretty darn good cook and I don't often encounter ingredients I'm not familiar with. (Oh, and I'm in on the 'I hate coconut' club, too!)

Funny story before my cooking stories: When my husband and I were dating, he asked if I wanted to take cooking lessons from his Mom. (Yeah, I know. How insensitive. It was a good thing I was already in love with the guy.) I told him to let me cook for him and then let him decide. He agreed. So I made chicken picatta (chicken breasts, pounded, lightly floured, and then browned in a lemon/caper/garlic sauce) for him. He devoured the meal and didn't mention cooking lessons again for a few months - when he mentioned that I should give lessons to his Mom. :)

My biggest cooking disaster came from a simple ingredient mistake. I was making spicy orange beef and you're supposed to add cornstarch at the end to thicken the juices into a sauce. I accidentally grabbed the baking soda instead of cornstarch. The soda turned the juices a flourescent shade of green that bubbled like a witch's cauldron. We promptly threw that away and went to Taco Bell.

I've had a quiche boil over in my oven. Scraping burnt eggs, cheese, and ham from the bottom of your oven is not a fun job.

Last but not least: This Thanksgiving my sister hosted the family at her house and asked me to make rolls. I have a great egg bread recipe that makes delicious rolls, but it only makes half a dozen of them. Not terribly familiar with the ins and outs of bread, I just tripled the recipe and went about things as usual. Well, instead of a nice, firm dough after the first rise I had goo. And I didn't realize that until I'd poured the entire (triple) batch onto my countertop. I then proceeded to try to knead some flour into it, thus getting the sticky goo all over another countertop and my hands. I had to get my husband to help me scrape it all off me and half of my kitchen and into muffin tins in an attempt to salvage the bread. It took half an hour to get it all cleaned up (on Thanksgiving morning), but the good news is that the rolls were scrumptious. :)
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Re: Cooking

Postby junaidj988 » 14 Sep 2011, 03:51

Watcher55 wrote:I eat coconut right out of the bag. I tried to eat a coconut once, but I ruined three peelers - that's why I buy it in the bag.


hmmm coconut yummy specially coconut chocolate. :geek: :|
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