i think i firgured a few things out. first, i finally made chicken i can eat. i made chicken drumsticks last night, they were good, but i added vegetables. they were still ok but not that great. today i just marinated them in spices, didn't add any veges, and they were awesome.
i think one of the problems i had was adding too many ingredients, specifically vegetables. maybe it's the way i cut them, or it's just not gonna work in a basic recipe.
also, i don't like the taste of plain beef. that was one of my problems with cooking beef (other than ground beef). for some reason the beef doesn't get the flavor that i want. i'm gonna try marinating my steak and cook in the over instead of the stove. i usually add the ingredients right before or during i cook, didnt marinade.