Mandy's Marvelous Meals

Recipes, tips, tricks, and my journey into cooking fabulous food!

Time to Throw in the Kitchen Towel!?!?

on March 31, 2012

Sometimes things just don’t turn out the way you thought they would.

Whoa! That is one big kitchen disaster!

Have you ever had one of those days in the kitchen where you think you’re doing such a great job and then the result is something like the picture above? I’ve always been a good baker, but I suppose that is because I’ve always been one to follow directions and follow them well. But now that I’ve been getting more adventurous and trying things on my own either by altering a recipe or attempting my own recipe I am finally seeing that it’s not as easy as I thought it would be.

Yesterday I was so motivated to try out some new stuff and serve Hubby a great Friday night dinner. I was actually excited that I had lots of extra time to spend in the kitchen. I started by attempting a new muffin recipe, but the result, as seen above, was quite scary. I didn’t let it get to me though…I tried again and this time the result looked pretty good.

Moving along to make dinner I  decided to try this recipe for Vinegar Braised Chicken which I came across in Food & Wine Magazine.  I made Hubby chicken thighs as stated in the recipe and followed it pretty much exact except that I did not add the Leeks. For mine I used boneless skinless chicken breast and substituted lighter ingredients (such as no butter, only 1 tsp. of olive oil and fat free sour cream instead of creme fraiche). It seemed like things were going along ok, but then as I began to cook and the kitchen started filling with a smoky haze it seemed like everything was beginning to go down hill. My attempt at making a side of pasta (which I’ve made before) tasted strange so I ended up throwing it away and just threw some Green Giant veggies & sauce in the microwave.

Whenever I make something new I always ask Hubby to rate it on a scale of 1-5.  I’m sure a lot of husbands out there would not dare tell their wives what they really thought about certain meals, but my Hubby has always been completely honest with me about it. I love this about him…even though I may get a chip on my shoulder for a minute or two I like to hear what he says and see how I can improve.  When we ate dinner last night, I could tell he really didn’t like it and this was confirmed when he said his rating was about a 2.8 (and I’m thinking he was just being generous rating that high). Disappointment overwhelmed me and I don’t know why….I never considered myself a perfectionist. I’ve never really excelled at anything…I was always just average and completely happy with that. But over the years when it comes to cooking I’ve started to become a little neurotic. I can’t even remember the last time Hubby gave me below a “3” rating and I always strive for at least a “4”. Nonetheless, I got over it.

Personally I thought the chicken was ok….it did have a unique flavor due to the tarragon and incase you didn’t know Tarragon tastes like black liccorice….so this dish may not be for everyone.

When we were all done I said to Hubby,  “well at least you’ll enjoy dessert.”

Or so I thought…

Hubby took one bite and made a face. I asked him what was wrong and he said he didn’t like it. He put a paper towel over it and pushed it away. Wow, really? That was a first and that was the point I became absolutely defeated.

You may be wondering why did I share this harrowing story of cooking disaster? I guess to reach those of you out there who have had “bad kitchen days” and to remind you and myself that when you fall off the horse you have to get back on. Don’t give up…there’s no need to go back to ordering pizza every other day…you can do it!

So today is a new day and I’m already thinking about what I will make to redeem myself. Remember…one bad day in the kitchen doesn’t mean you’re not a great cook…

Shake it off and try again.


4 responses to “Time to Throw in the Kitchen Towel!?!?

  1. I have definitely had bad kitchen days. When we first got married, i started a family cookbook to capture both sides of our families recipes. Great idea, except i kept having him rate every recipe I made with a “is this cookbook worthy.” After awhile he asked me not to please not ask him anymore because I would get so defeated when something wasn’t up to par. Now every now and again, he’ll eat something and smile and say, “this is cook book worthy!” Makes me soar…. Know exactly where you are coming from.

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