Never quite follows the recipe. Doesn't really measure. Tastes with her fingers. Somehow, it always works.

The things I succeed at, and one at which I fail.

Posted: May 5th, 2008 | Author: johanna | Filed under: Johanna | 21 Comments »

I’m quite a competent cook. I have enough skill, competence and imagination to be able to cook lots of things. I can make things up on the fly, and I can follow a recipe. I’m a pretty darn good cook.

Friday, I made some pretty bitchin’ burgers for dinner. It seems to be a thing with us…. but they’re so delicious that Friday Night Burger Night doesn’t seem like such a bad idea. These burgers had shredded gruyere in the middle. I have to figure out how to seal the burgers so the cheese is a pocket, not a clump.
Clearly I must study Keetha’s work more closely. And ask her for tips. Lots of tips.

But they were still quite the yum.

Saturday, there was no dinner. Jesse and I were going to make something he’d found online – the Hot Brown – as a kind of “bistro supper”, which is fancy shmanss for dinner after midnight. But, I didn’t get out of work until after the Food Emporium had closed…. so unfortunately, there was no din din that night.

Sunday though, I did something that I love to do. I roasted a chicken before I went to work at 3, and made my kind of potato salad.
There is potato salad, and potato salad. And then there is the way I like potato salad. I don’t like lots of mayonnaise. In fact, I don’t like mayonnaise at all. I make mine with lots of little potatoes, as opposed to big Idaho potatoes. I buy the bag of tiny potatoes in red, white, and purple that Whole Foods sells. I cut them into quarters, because I really like bite-size bits. I boiled them in salted water, and then made a vinaigrette of olive oil, white balsamic, garlic, thyme, mustard, and scallion. I threw it in the fridge and let it sit while I went to work.

When I got home, we took some of the chicken, and some of the salad, plus a bottle of wine, up onto our roof, and enjoyed the beautiful weather and watched the sun set and said hello to Manhattan and Brooklyn. It was wonderful.

And yes, I will admit, we ended up drinking a second bottle of wine up there. And watching our neighbor shoot firecrackers off hte roof. It was funny.

Tonight, I made chicken salad with the chicken that was left (and I will soon make stock with the carcass). I used a similar vinaigrette, and added a little mayonnaise for thickener. It was pretty darn delicious. I’m really excited to eat the rest of it.

Jesse and I were thinking about things to make this week, and I mentioned that I love falafel. I’ve never been able to make any to my liking. I’ve had lots of good falafel, including the bitchin’ stuff that I had today at lunch.
I have read about 65 recipes on Falafel. I’ve made the recipe from the Culinary Institute of America textbook. I’ve made them like meatballs. I’ve added egg. I’ve added no egg. Breadcrumbs. No breadcrumbs. About a million different varieties. They either don’t stick together, or they’re so sticky it doesn’t work out. I’ve rolled them in flour. I’ve rolled them in breadcrumbs. I’ve made patties, balls, I’ve shallow fried them, and contemplated deep frying them. Basically, I cannot make falafel. It’s really frustrating too, because I love falafel. Every time I eat it, I want to eat it for 3 days in a row. I’ll probably have it again tomorrow, because it’s so good. I wish I could do it at home. If anyone has any insight, I’d be thrilled. I need just a little help because I’m almost there, which I can tell. I’m just not really sure what I’m missing. I need to learn. It’s frustrating.

This week, we will possibly have another go at falafel. Hopefully I will photograph it. Hopefully it will be ok. If it’s not, maybe somebody can help me out. Go to it, foodies. GO GO GO!!!


21 Comments on “The things I succeed at, and one at which I fail.”

  1. 1 Karl said at 2:33 pm on November 16th, 2014:

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