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Old 03-14-2012, 11:26 AM   #1
Sous Chef
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Cooking defeats - What have yours been? Did you learn anything from them.

One that comes to mind right now, is my attempt to deep fry home made samosas, and getting oily mush as a result.

I was too stubborn to admit defeat so tried cooking all of them in the fryer despite seriel failure, rather than stopping after the first one, and then also had the unpleasant task of cleaning the gunk out of the deep fryer, and then not knowing where to dispose of it without making a leaking disgusting bag of garbage, so I put it in the toilet, which blocked the toilet as the oil congealed on hitting the cold toilet water.

What I learned
I learned to bake samosas, rather than fry. I suppose, I could try shallow frying them, but baking seems better, because shallow frying would probably still cause the pasty to become soggy with fat.


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Old 03-14-2012, 11:40 AM   #2
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When making batter dipped onion rings, don't drop a whole handful in the hot oil at one time. They will cook up as one multi-coiled onion ring mass the size of a softball!

WHAT I LEARNED: Drop batter dipped onion rings into the hot oil one at a time so the coating on the first one has a chance to set before the second one hits it.

Lest you think that's my only mistake:

Never break an egg into a flat dish and microwave it. It will result in an explosion (no, I am not exaggerating) and little particles of cooked egg all over the inside of the microwave, including in all those tiny little holes used for venting.

WHAT I LEARNED: Break the yolk first, then microwave.

"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
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Old 03-14-2012, 12:15 PM   #3
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No matter what else you worry about falling into it, NEVER put a lid on a pan in which you're heating oil. When you take the lid off, superheated oil will immediately flash.

And when it flashes, put the lid back on. Do NOT try to move the pan off the burner. Other lessons that go with that are that burned skin never tans again, and physical therapists are sadistic.
"Kitchen duty is awarded only to those of manifest excellence..." - The Master, Dogen
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Old 03-14-2012, 04:49 PM   #4
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When I was very young all of my defeats revolved around attempting to make "gourmet" meals when I invited people to my home. I finally wised up and started making TNT country meals that I had made a hundred times. So I guess I really learned to be myself.
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Old 03-14-2012, 04:55 PM   #5
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I tried a whole wheat pasta dish with homemade pasta. We went out to eat that night.

What I learned......I am just fine with dried store bought pasta.
What else I learned....Whole wheat pasta sucks even the store bought kind.
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Old 03-14-2012, 05:03 PM   #6
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Never ever ever cook ham studded with cloves in a crock pot with orange juice for 10 hours.

What I learned.
1. Orange juice will get a burned taste that is over powered only by the overwhelming taste of clove.

2. Keep the number for pizza delivery handy at all times!
Quoth the chicken, "Fry some more."
AB - Good Eats: Fry Hard II
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Old 03-14-2012, 07:55 PM   #7
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Fails always make you a better cook! Mine are too many to mention. Best thing, being able to look back and laugh at yourself!
Emeralds are real Gems! C. caninus and C. batesii.
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Old 03-14-2012, 08:02 PM   #8
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Never boast about a dish you have made a few times and think you can wing it without referencing the recipe at least once.

What I Learned Shrek will always use the phrase "Harvard Beets" to wind me up...at least until one of us goes. I better go last or he'll tell the story at my wake.
“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.” - Albert Einstein
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Old 03-14-2012, 08:16 PM   #9
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do not take pizza dough from the fridge and try to stretch it to make a pizza right away.

it will never stretch out when cold no matter how hard you try.
It seems like taste buds get along really well, just by their name...
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:23 AM   #10
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There was that one time I tried to make my baby eat steamed puréed celery Babyfood. My poor baby! How I tortured her.

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