~ C.E. Schwilk ~ Society, It Smells Like Meat

An omnivore attempting vegetarianism, a writer attempting to get published, just another person just trying to stay out of jail.

Slowly Cooking Does Not a Slow Cooker Make

My better-half knew from the start – I am not a cook. I don’t even like cooking. It stresses me out and I swear a lot. I could make a sailor blush on a normal occasion, but cooking bumps up this potty-mouth of mine to 11. I blame my mother; for the cooking hatred, not the swearing, although they could be related. I love my darling more than I hate cooking, so I have made my ultimate sacrifice to attempt to cook, and feed our family of two. (the pets are safe from my chemistry experiments, lucky them)

ImageDespite my anti-cooking sensibilities, I’m pretty good at it, except for the time when I tried to make Punjabi Curried Kidney Beans. In my defence, I didn’t use a slow cooker (as this recipe was from Anupy Singla’s Indian Slow Cooker cookbook) but chucked everything in a pot – and prayed a lot. Also, just days before the better-half cracked and destroyed our slow cooker (the glass lid shattered; whether or not it was latched is still unknown) – so that wasn’t my fault, either.

It started off well enough. Most of the prep work was done for me (my darling doesn’t trust me with sharp objects, so the vegetables were sliced and quartered appropriately – I just had to cut up the tomatoes). I basically just had to put everything together at the allotted time and turn on the stove.

Our apartment soon filled with the wonderful smell of spices and everything looked pretty. I loved the green cilantro against the red kidney beans and the onions and garlic just made my tummy growl in anticipation. I’m a texture sort of person, too, so seeing everything simmer in the pot, the cumin very pungent and the smell of garam masala is something that always makes my mouth water (we put it in nearly everything we cook here).

I followed directions exactly, minus “put it all in the slow cooker” part. I figured just as long as I stirred it and kept a close watch on it, I’d be fine. Perhaps that was the true error of my ways. I didn’t keep a close watch. I got involved in Other Stuff and I left things on the stove just a little longer than necessary without checking. How was I supposed to know that I had to stand over the cooking pot all day? I probably should have started cooking at about 8 AM and had the burner on lower than medium. That could have been it, too.punjabi curried beans

By dinner time, there was a burning smell – that I could not detect being that I don’t have a very good sense of smell (another reason to be wary of cooking for other people) and the food was absolutely ruined. I had a bite of it and it wasn’t good, barely edible, but I would have eaten it were I starving. As it were, the better-half quickly whipped up some vegetarian burgers and salad to keep me from shamefully eating that mess.

We’ve cooked it since (and purchased a new slow cooker) but this is one of those dishes I will probably have nightmares about for the rest of my life.

Talk to me!

What’s your worst cooking fiasco? Was it something you love to cook or a brand new dish you wanted to try? Did you try making it again or banned it from your kitchen?


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