Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Crash's Journal July


                                     During my summer vacation,

I cooked.  Only about five dinners, and four of them were pasta dishes, but I cooked nonetheless. You see, whenever I decided to eat in and "cook", that usually meant going to Food Emporium and picking up a prepared rotisserie chicken, a bag of Ore Ida fries, and a bag of prepared salad mix.  Just so you understand my starting point.

I finally dialed in a spaghetti Bolognese sauce from America's Test Kitchen.  Pretty easy, but it still requires about four hours to cook.  My chopping skills are pretty lousy, but I do like the work involved in making the sauce.  You've got to brown the carrots, celery, onions, the ground pork & beef, then simmer the milk, simmer the white wine, and then simmer a big ass can of tomatoes.  Four hours later, you've got something that tastes a whole lot better than a jar of Ragu tomato sauce.  (I also used the BRS' Chris' Pot one time).  

My biggest test was my last meal that I cooked on Monday.  A Texas style barbeque beef brisket on a charcoal grill. Not only was this fun to do, but it turned out great.  I basically smoked the heck out of the brisket for eight hours.  I also made mashed potatoes, gravy, some somen noodles mixed with Japanese mayonnaise, celery, onions, and smoked salmon (under Mi Yong's supervision).  I served the brisket on oversized sliced bread, added some rolls, and polished off a bottle of red wine and a six pack of Stella Artois. All in all a great meal.

My lesson learned?  I never cooked before because I thought I didn't have the time, but now I've learned that taking the time to cook is the best part.  It also helps to sip a glass or two of wine while you cook.


  1. America's Test Kitchen? Julia Childs weeps for your soul. (Actually I use their cook book quite a bit, the oatmeal cookies rock, though I disagree with their contention that you can make a proper gumbo roux in 20 minutes. Everyone knows a good gumbo roux is properly timed in ice cold long necks consumed while stirring.)

  2. Claim the point this month, but I certainly had higher hopes for you, Crash. You only cooked 5 times? And four of them were spaghetti sauce? We need to get together and [really] cook. We'll call it 'recovery dinner' or something.