Speak to anyone close to me, and they will probably tell you that one of my more charming traits (I hope) is that I am a complete and utter failure in the kitchen. Actually, “failure” is putting it lightly. When it comes to my horrible culinary skills (or lack thereof) and frequently disgusting–sometimes dangerous–end results, the word “catastrophe” is much more fitting.
My very first kitchen catastrophe happened when I was a teenager. I’m the oldest of five and frequently babysat my siblings while my parents were out. On one such occasion, I decided I was going to surprise my parents by baking brownies, but not just plain, old, boring brownies, no, I was going to make heart-shaped brownies. I’d been eyeing this hot pink heart-shaped silicon (or so I thought) pan that my mom had purchased a few weeks earlier, and this was my chance to finally get my grubby hands on it. Sadly, the silicon pan was not silicon at all. It was plastic. Extremely, regrettably, meltable plastic. Needless to say, we had neither brownies nor a heart-shaped pan by the time I was done in the kitchen that day.
Since I was a teenager when that first fiasco happened, you’d think that I must have gotten better at this cooking thing by now. No, no I haven’t. As a matter of fact, I’ve only added more outrageous kitchen catastrophes to the list.
- Finding pantry food that is well past the expiration date. As in three or four years past. Oops.
- Using my slow cooker for the very first time and completely, and I mean completely, liquefying my southwest shredded chicken. Instead of drinking my dinner that night, I ordered out, because I don’t actually want to poison myself.
- That time I tried to make my own Italian-esque mozzarella balls. You know, the type in flavored oil that are THE BOMB. I’m half Italian, this should have been a victory. It wasn’t. It was flavorless mozzarella balls coated in dry seasonings that kept getting stuck in my teeth 😦
- One of my favorites: the time I preheated my oven without checking inside first and almost set fire to a sadly forgotten and stowed away pizza box. This was actually pretty scary and had me shaking for a good hour or two. And the smell…dear sweet baby Jesus, the smell.
- I’ve had quite a few failtastic milk related kitchen catastrophes. The top two, however: 1) Accidentally eating sour milk because I didn’t check the expiration date before making a bowl of cereal, and 2) Now more vigilant in checking milk before using it, I too enthusiastically did the sniff test and snorted milk bubbles up my nose. Adulthood – nailed it.
- Still, I’ve saved the best for last: that time I liquefied a potato. As in the potato was sitting in my veggie bowl for so long that it actually liquefied on the bottom. One night, I came home to a RANK smell in my kitchen, like spoiled fish or weeks-old garbage in a NYC alley. After some investigating, I went to pick up the potato from the veggie bowl, and it dribbled through my fingers.
My parents have often told me that I probably shouldn’t live on my own, and although I greatly resent that–SINCE THEY RAISED ME AND SHOULD HAVE DONE A BETTER JOB AT TEACHING ME HOW TO COOK SO I COULD SURVIVE ON MY OWN IN THE BIG, BAD WORLD–they aren’t wrong. Alas, I value my independence far too much to get a roommate, and I’m totally not in the soon-to-be-married phase of my life yet. So, for the foreseeable future, fake!adulthood it is! And, you know, thank goodness for GrubHub, and the like, or I’d probably starve to death.