Saturday, August 6, 2011

My Cooking Venture

If you remember a couple weeks ago I decided to jump in and finally attempt to make Nick's mom's/nana's homemade meatballs and marinara recipe (here) and I didn't do too bad. Both Nick and I were pretty impressed that everything turned out similar to how it tastes when his mom makes it. (Score 1 point for me!)

Fast forward to Wednesday night of this week (remember in my early Wed morning post, I planned my grocery shopping list focused around new recipes: here) - I left work earlier than normal and hit up Hy-Vee for a long list of groceries. I was planning to make four meals that would feed us through the rest of the week/weekend for both lunch and dinner. What did I make, you ask?
  • For dinner that night, I found a recipe online for taverns (yes, we call them taverns, not sloppy joes, in our small town) and they turned out damn good. (1 point)

  • Nick's mom's lasagna recipe. I always loved when she would whip one of these up and on her Omaha trips put one in our freezer. I attempted this creation and for my first time EVER making lasagna I would have to say I did good. However, where the recipe said to cook the noodles til they are "almost" done? I failed here, the noodles were still a bit hard. Plus, the last layer of cheese melted completely around the top layer of noodles and it just didn't look as yummy as it does when his mom makes it. (0.5 points)

  • On the Cooking Light website, I found a recipe for Chipotle Chicken Chile, which I figured Nick would LOVE. I made it (proud of myself for sauteeing real chicken, not using the stuff from a can) and it just didn't seem too appetizing - very watery and the stewed tomatoes didn't seem to cook all the way. I love how Nick tried it and said "if I put enough crackers in it it should taste ok." Thanks for trying to make me feel better, buddy. (0 points)

  • From the same website, I pulled off a Creamy Tomato Balsamic Bisque recipe that I figured would be perfect to bring to work for lunch each day. It took 50 minutes to cook the basic mixture at 500 degrees in the oven only to have to then pour it into the blender to mix (note to other new cooks out there: despite having the lid on the blender and holding it down with your hand - steaming hot, red liquid will STILL spray out, burning your hand and staining one of your favorite tanks...) Then it asked to put the mixture in a sieve to sift out the big pieces....well if you forget to put the bowl under the sieve the soup will go down the drain....seriously I'm a lost cause. (0 points)
All in I give my attempt 1.5 points out of 4 total. Definitely not great, but I'm not giving up. You will see more of my conquests posted here as I encounter them. Wish me luck!

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