I made the decision to start this blog after an epic fail in the kitchen. I was making a fish casserole…which when I opened my cookbook and saw the recipe I chose back at the beginning of the year I have no idea why I would have chosen it.
To back track…in the last few years I have been REALLY getting into cooking. I really enjoy cooking and making foods that I know what the ingredients are and having a control over what I am putting in my body. I have several Pinterest boards with a ton of recipes pinned. Also I have a quite large collection of cookbooks. I was noticing that I never really looked at the cookbooks after I initially got them, they just sat on a shelf. So for my first real New Year’s resolution I decided that I would go through all my cookbooks and tag the first recipe in each that looked interesting. I would take the first cookbook from the shelf, make the tagged recipe, then find the next recipe that seemed interesting and tag that one. The book would go back on the shelf and I would take the next book off the shelf and repeat. I decided if I would commit myself to one recipe a week and if I had time in the week I would make more. In the almost 6 months I have been doing this project I have really learned quite a bit. My first cook book recipe from the project I had to make a mayonnaise to accompany the rest of the dish. Soon after that I made a tomato sauce (which if anyone knows me know I hate everything tomato so the fact that I made and ate a tomato sauce is bananas!). Then I made Chinese Five Spice which was fun to track down the necessary ingredients and then toast and grind then. My husband Matt and I have shared some really stellar meals I would have normally made and some not so great. What is most fun is when you make something that you really don’t think is going to work out but then it’s awesome! I had a recipe for stuffed peppers. It was a crazy amount of steps (something prior to this project I would have never attempted). First you cook ground beef and ground pork. Then that has to cool and you stuffed them into piquillo peppers. That then has to firm up in the fridge. Then you dipped in an egg wash and breading, fried them, let them cool, then cooked them in beef broth. I really didn’t have much hope of them being that great but to Matt and my surprise they were amazing! I love surprises like that!
So back to the epic fail…something with the word casserole is typically not appealing to me. But I had tagged this recipe for one reason or another so I was going to have to make it. First you slice potatoes thin and boil them until they are tender. Then you take a casserole dish and coat the bottom with olive oil. Then you lay the potato slices, top those with slices of tomato. Then you season with salt and pepper and add a layer of firm white fish. You coat the fish in a spice mixture containing ground cumin and paprika along with fresh cilantro and parsley. Then add another layer of tomatoes. Then you add peel from preserved lemons (I had preserved my own the week prior – so at least I learned something from this recipe?) And then add sliced green olives. Season with pepper and add ¾ cups of water to steam the fish I guess? Finally top with about a tablespoon of olive oil. Cook covered in the oven for a half hour, remove the foil and cook another 20 minutes. When I pulled the casserole out of the oven I could tell the fish wasn’t anywhere near cooked, and the potatoes and tomatoes were a soggy mess. Even tasting a bit of the fish on an edge that was cooked it wasn’t tasty…in fact it was pretty gross.
So I called The Carvery (if you ever go to Windsor, Ontario make sure you eat at The Carvery….the sandwiches shouldn’t taste as good as they do!) and picked up sandwiches for dinner. We had a nice dinner on the deck while the kitchen stunk of fish…and the next day it still stinks! Moral of the story – NO MORE CASSEROLES!!
P.S. Post from now on will include photos…have to get in the habit of photographing while cooking!!