Posts Tagged ‘kitchen disasters’

kitchen gadgets of doom

October 19, 2009

My flat in the UK, a new temporary post-doc-studies accommodating asset, is furnished, which includes pots and pans and things in the kitchen. Most of these are new or at least clean. Only the oven, split into a baking and a grilling compartment, has seen way too many moons and could apparently not be cleaned any more. I am looking forward to a 19th century-style ur-British day of coal mining one day. For now, I’m happy to consider here the various things I am renting.

First, there is the scooper. This is a bent slotted spoon made from heat-resistant black plastic, apparently, or hopefully, used for scooping up sausages from their greasy bath. The plumber, who came after a week to fix a leaking tap, forgot his keys behind the wooden panel in front of the bathtub and used the scooper to retrieve them. (more…)


(lack of) dedication, and punishment

February 11, 2008

A former member of my household had a tendency of putting the rice pan on the burner and leaving the kitchen for other tasks. I have, consequently, developed an extended repertoire of technical solutions for getting a layer of blue-black rice out of any kind of pan (most effective is a conical steel brush on a power drill).

I have endlessly tried to fill the time it takes to get the ingredients of a Cappuccino processed respectively hot enough with useful other tasks. Scraping burned milk off the stove is no fun, so I have stopped trying.

While my herbal tea steeps (that is, if I’m having herbal tea), I go away: I hate waiting and I hate burning my mouth. Most of the time it is cold when I return.

A shoulder of pork in a cosily warm oven, snuggled against the sides of a heavy pan and comfortably coated by its rub, doesn’t need your agonizing about its state every minute. But most things cooking simply don’t like being left alone at all. So today I had this beef roast, carefully trimmed and treated with the most delicious of rubs (pepper, juniper, cloves, powdered bay leaves, you name it). I put the oven on real low, put the meat on a bed of veggies, added a dash of wine and went writing posts for my harpsichord blog. I returned into the kitchen once to turn the roast, but I forgot that I could have checked its inner temperature already then, just for keeping in touch, kind of. So, yes: sigh. We had perfectly spiced, completely cooked-through roast beef today. I sliced it really thin and made thick gravy to cover its old-leather-belt-color. But I’ll have to learn to do better than that, even on Sundays.