There’s nothing too interesting going on around here, so my natural inclination is to talk about food.
Specifically, my food.
I don’t mean to brag, but when it comes to all things culinary, I’d give myself a solid A-. I love trying new recipes and I think that over the years, I’ve definitely mastered the basics and possibly even a few advanced techniques.
Perhaps not surprisingly, Scott would disagree with this personal assessment.
When it comes to my cooking, Scott seems to have a selective memory. Looking back over the past several years, I’ve had two major disasters occur in the kitchen. Both of these went down when I was fairly new to the concept of preparing my own food.
The first was in college. I insisted Scott let me make him a batch of my mom’s vegetable beef soup while at his apartment one evening. My method involved tossing all of the ingredients into an extremely large stock pot, turning the burner on high, and promptly leaving the room so that I might watch the latest episode of The Hills. I was hungry and didn’t want to miss Speidi’s faux wedding in Mexico — I figured this speedy cooking style would fit in nicely with my priorities for the rest of the evening.
Ten minutes later, Scott inquired as to what the strong burning smell coming from the kitchen was. Rushing to the stove top I made the disappointing discovery that all of the ingredients were charred and cemented to the bottom of the pan. I had wasted nearly thirty dollars of groceries. (On the bright side, I’ll never forget that you can’t rush homemade soup.)
My other mishap occurred when we were living in Syracuse. Scott and I had become the proud owners of half a dozen overripe bananas, which I had every intention of turning into a delicious loaf of banana bread. Again, my hastiness got the best of me. I decided that mixing the dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately and then combining them at the end would not only take far too long, it would create extra dishes. Combining everything in one bowl from the get go was the obvious choice. I mean, it all ends up there anyway, right?
So very wrong.
The end product was less like bread and more like a soggy banana meatloaf crouton monster with burnt edges and a creamy grey center. I tried to throw it out before Scott could witness it in all of its grotesque glory , but of course, I was too late.
Six years, and hundreds of successful recipes later, these are literally the only foods I’ve prepared that Scott actually remembers.
Despite successfully cooking dozens of delicious soups since college, every time I start fixing some, he finds it necessary to remind me (in an extremely condescending tone) not to throw everything in the pot at once and then turn it on high.
As if I didn’t remember.
And if I hear “Oh no! You forgot that you have to mix the dry and wet ingredients together at the end…didn’t you??” one more time, I think I just might burn a loaf of banana bread to a rock hard brick simply so it will cause more damage when I chuck in his general direction.
Needless to say, every time I try coming up with a new meal, Scott is extremely skeptical. I’ve dug myself a deep hole, and no matter how many savory dishes I whip up, he’ll never forget the stupid soup and banana bread.
When he came home last week to find me removing skins from the dozens of tomatoes our CSA provided, he flipped.
“Katrina! What are you doing?? I was going to make salsa with those!”
“Oh, I’m sure we’ll get more next week so you can make salsa. I wanted to try this new tomato pie recipe I found online. Apparently, its way better than the tomato cobbler I wanted to make.”
“Tomato Pie?!? No! That sounds terrible! How will you keep the tomatoes from getting all watery? I don’t want to eat a pie full of tomatoes!”
I rolled my eyes and continued peeling the skins. It was too late to turn back.
A few hours later, this baby came out of the oven.
And it was delicious.
But of course it was delicious! I mean…I did get the recipe from Paula Deen, after all. I don’t think that woman is even capable of making anything that’ s not delicious.
Here’s the recipe I used, in case you want to make your own tomato pie.
Instead of using a cup of mayonnaise for the topping, I did a half cup of plain greek yogurt. I also threw in an extra tomato for good measure and used crumbled goat cheese (highly recommended) and shaved parmesan as opposed to cheddar and mozzarella.
Scott’s final verdict?
“Wow. This is really good.”
I could almost see his memories of the burnt soup and grey banana bread vanishing into thin air as he enjoyed bite after bite of my Paula Deen creation.
Until I made him tell me how good it was no less than fifteen times, that is.
I also may have danced around the table, throwing sprigs of basil while singing “I was right and you were wroooooong!!!”
Whatever. It was totally worth it.