Here is my mini mid-week update!!! I stumbled back into the kitchen and tried to cook again!
I would like to first start out by saying that it was a very rocky road. I almost went blind. I almost burnt down my apartment. I wasted many a produce. I cried (involuntarily) at one point. It was a journey of somewhat-epic proportions.
But here are some things I learned (some things could be considered common sense, but alas, I figured out the hard way):
Oranges don’t smell so good when they are on the brink of combustion.
Chocolate that has expired three years ago doesn’t melt properly
Putting scorching hot liquid in a plastic container will slightly warp it.
Leaving scorching hot liquid in a plastic container will ruin it.
Not checking in on boiling substances with lots of sugar will always lead to mishap.
When there is a lot of “steam” by the oven, it’s probably smoke.
Putting your eyes in smoke can cause eye irritation (and involuntary tears).
Ribbons make everything look better.
So here’s the deal-io:
I have some oranges. Well, not some….a crap ton of oranges. Mainly because I want to cook with them. So there isn’t some weird coincidence here…I bought them because I wanted to make some stuff. But starting out the story like that makes it seem a little cooler.
I initially just wanted to make candied orange peels. But this story actually goes back awhile. In short: I made them a long time ago and they turned out horrific. I am aiming to correct past confectionery mistakes now. The end.
Back to present day.
I go and start making the tasty dessert and leave my concoction boiling on the stove. I check back every five minutes with no apparent texture change (despite the heavy amounts of sugar that could make a marathon runner go diabetic). Then, I leave my stove for 10 very quick minutes and **BAM**, all hell breaks loose. The pot is slowly churning pregnant looking purple bubbles that are spurting out slivers of charred orange zest. From far away, it simply looked like a lot of steam was coming from the oven area. WRONG.
[Note Bene: Please let me remind you…I have no real cooking experience. So what may seem like common sense for most, I am probably lacking in the kitchen area. My boyfriend cooks while I always clean everything, so it’s not like I sit on the couch 24/7.]
At this point, it is obvious that this back of orange peels (that took about an hour to cut…) is beyond repair. And if I had left the oven unattended to read one more Wired.com article, I would probably be homeless right now.
Day two begins with a slightly better start. As I make a second batch of strawberry jam I try again at making candied orange peels. All is well:
Cut oranges without cutting myself. Check.
Blanch oranges and bring syrup to boil. Check.
Dip in sugar, blah blah blah… Check!
Things are looking up! Until they don’t.
See, I wanted to have half of my batch dipped in chocolate. Apparently, I can’t handle melting chocolate. I guess this is a really complicated process. Here’s what went down:
I tried to melt 100% cacao and add sugar. I ended up with a weird mess that looked like dog feces.
I tried to melt Hershey’s bars, but they expired in 2008. I found this out after I tried melting them. Tried being the key word.
Then, I finally ventured out into the real world (aka Target) and got a bar of Lindt chocolate. Bingo. This stuff melted like the Tupperwarecontainer with hot syrup leftover from the orange peels!
After all of this, I had two huge mixing bowls full of oranges. So I made marmalade! I actually have never had marmalade, so I will have no idea if it came out right. But it looks like all the pictures on the interwebs. All is well that ends well!
Her Morning Elegance.The Opposite Side of the Sea.Oren Lavie
I Saw the Light.Transference.Spoon
Island In The Sun.The Green Album.Weezer
Kiss With A Fist.Lungs.Florence + The Machine
L.E.S. Artists.Palm Out Sounds.Santogold
Lake Michigan.Asleep At Heaven’s Gate.Rogue Wave
Lasso.Wolfgang Amadaeus Phoenix.Phoenix
Lay Down Your Weapons.Underhanded Romance.Scissors for Lefty
Logos.Dynamo.Faded Paper Figures
Mad Word.Donnie Darko Sountrack.Roland Orzabal
Modern Nature.Faces Down.Sonre Lerche
Mr. Pitiful.Unfamiliar Faces.Matt Costa
My Moon My Man.The Reminder.Feist