A Celebration of Failures

I’ve been thinking about doing this in place of a Wordless Wednesday for a while now, and by a while now, I mean months.  I’ve been sort of hesitant, because someone who wants to be known for being a pretty experienced cook in the kitchen probably shouldn’t be posting her kitchen “oopsies” for all the world to see.  But I try not to look at it that way, and I thought this would be a fun and encouraging post for others to see.  The way I see it, if you’re not making mistakes, you’re either:  1.  Not taking enough risks, or  2. Not learning.  Yes, I admit that the majority of the things I make come out really well, but there are times when I try new things and they just don’t work, or a recipe needs to be tweaked.  I’m sure Thomas Keller or even Gordon Ramsay have duds every once in a while.  So if you have a kitchen oopsie moment, embrace it and learn from it. Here’s a celebration of failures:

Here I tried to make “risotto” with spaghetti in place of rice.  The idea was to toast the spaghetti, then add stock little by little until the noodles absorbed the liquid, and we achieved a starchy sauce.  I toasted the spaghetti a little too much!

This one is from a while back.  I learned the importance of swirling the meringue flat onto a tart when using the broiler.  The top gets burned otherwise!  If you want height to your meringue with even browning, you have to use a kitchen torch, end of story.

My attempt to make spaghetti carbonara resulted in scrambled eggs and bacon pasta.  Breakfast, anyone?  The pan can’t be too hot when you’re making it!

And last but not least, sweet potato doughnuts, burned on the bottom.  I tried to bake two sheets of them at the same time, but apparently being in the lower third of the oven is too much for the doughnuts.  Center baking only, one sheet at a time!  They look so much better when they’re not burned, don’t you think?

Alright, fortunately that’s it.  Thank goodness my kitchen oopsies are rare, but here they are!  I hope I didn’t embarrass myself!  HAHAHA!  See you tomorrow for a recipe.  I think I’ll make sure the photo is extra pretty and the recipe is perfect, to restore my reputation!  Thanks for reading, and I hope that some of you enjoyed this and were encouraged in some way! =)

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14 Responses to A Celebration of Failures

  1. alyssa says:

    I agree, everyone who is taking risks and trying to learn something new in the kitchen is bound to have a mistake. Even recipes I’ve made tons of times, from time to time you can have an “oppsie!” I love this idea! I can make 10 great dishes and then one dish doesn’t come out the way I was hoping and I start to think, well maybe I’m just not meant to be inthe kitchen! Plus, I think some of your “mistakes” are great pictures and great ideas (spaghetti risotto sounds pretty cool!)

  2. I think this is an awesome idea! Well done on embracing your oopsies.
    Have a great day.
    🙂 Mandy

  3. daisy says:

    We all have “oopsies.” That’s how we learn or discover something new. It’s all part of cooking. Heck, sometimes the mistakes still taste good, even if they’re not pretty. I’m sure your meringue pie still tasted great once you scrape off the burnt parts.

  4. Such a great post. I’ve had some doozies. I haven’t mutilated anything lately, oops better knock on wood.

  5. Norma says:

    Terrific post. If I shared my oopsies with you you would have such a laught. The wort was when I put a roast in the oven and completely forgot about it….

  6. I think it’s great you’ve shown your failures! Guess what? We all mess up. And if you don’t, then you aren’t trying enough new things.

  7. I think it is important to show mistakes, everyone can learn from them! Good post!

  8. I totally have a spaghetti carbonara fail, too! mine was soupy and flavorless. I almost prefer your scrambled version. 😉 http://bravenewfood.wordpress.com/2011/03/26/spaghetti-carbonara-fail/

  9. What a great idea! I am sure we all have oopsies… that could take prizes in the “ultimate failures”. Laughter, a great sense of humor, and learning from our mistakes is all part of the test kitchen philosophy.

  10. Marco says:

    Without failures there would be no celebtaions. Even the best hitters in baseball get out 7 of 10 times!

    BTW have you tried the French recipe Rabbit in a Mustard Sauce yet?

    • Joanne says:

      I have never seen rabbit available in any groceries I’ve been to, so I haven’t ever made it. I have however had it in a restaurant before. It was amazing…one of the best dishes I’ve ever had! What makes you ask?

  11. Ann says:

    I think this is a WONDERFUL post! It’s nice to know that even experienced, amazing cooks such as yourself have their moments! One of my most popular posts was the one where I made something I didn’t like….go figure!

  12. InCucinaDaME says:

    Brilliant post, normally my “oppsie!” happen when I am ever so anxious if a special guest is coming to supper that I f$%$k up the whole meal…

  13. I’ve had a similar adventure but WITH a kitchen torch… got a bit to eager to brown the meringue and I burnt a little off my bamboo chopping board! PS Baking is always full of “fun” surprises. Those latter donuts look delicious!

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