Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Every One is Not a Winner

Just because a recipe sounds good doesn't mean that it will be a winner when you make it. This can be true even when the beautiful picture depicting it makes your mouth water just looking at it or if it contains some of your favorite ingredients. When you collect as many recipes as I do, you’re bound to run into a few flops. This week I ran into a bunch.

The first, Black Bean Pork and Zucchini from Cooking Light, sounded like my kind of recipe. I like black beans. I like zucchini. What could go wrong? Well first off, I must admit I didn’t exactly follow the recipe. I had chicken in my freezer, but not pork, so I actually made Black Bean Chicken and Zucchini. I’m not sure if chicken and pork made all that much difference in the recipe, but something didn’t taste all that great about this recipe to me. I think it might have been the black bean sauce or the ginger. In any case, I don’t think I’ll be making it again. I’m hoping to find another recipe I do like with black bean sauce since I have a whole jar of it in my refrigerator.

The second flop wasn’t a huge surprise – Roasted Beet Pizza. It actually wasn’t that bad, considering it was a pizza with beets on it. My big mistake here was that I didn’t let the beets cool long enough after roasting them and before slicing them to put them on the pizza. Since they were so hot, I couldn’t slice them thin enough. If they had been sliced thinner the pizza would have been easier to eat. Instead, the beets fell off as I bit them. I forgot to put the honey and salt on after cooking and also substituted red beets for the golden beets the recipe called for. The pizza was topped with shallots and feta cheese, which tasted good together and may be all I put on my pizza next time.

Finally, I made Sesame-Miso Cucumber Salad. I can just about make creamy cucumber salad in my sleep, so I thought trying something new would be good. The dressing is a spicy Asian one that is supposed to made with sesame seeds, white soybean paste or soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil and honey. Having spent all my grocery money on black bean sauce, I used soy sauce for the soybean paste and olive oil for the sesame. This one wasn’t the biggest flop, but I don’t think I’ll save the recipe either.

So three recipes, three flops. But is there one common denominator? Actually there is. Well, besides me, anyway. All the recipes were not made according to specifications. Would making them exactly as described, with the exact ingredients have made a difference? There's probably a lesson to be learned there, but I guess I’ll never know. I have too many other mouthwatering recipes in my stack to try.

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