Wednesday, September 13

I Feel Like Chicken Tonight

Ok, so I lied. Last week I tried making dhal and swore that I'd never go back into the kitchen again (although technically that would be impossible since it's on the way to the den where this computer sits, but you know what I mean). However since then I had spoken to my mum and told her about my culinary escapade, and instead of laughing at me (I've had worse) she told me to try chicken instead. Gasp.

And so with dearest mother's blessing, I did just that; today, the night before my parents were due to return from holiday. Now, unlike with the dhal, the recipe my mum gave me was very, very simple. It went something like this:

  1. Defrost chicken.
  2. Wash chicken.
  3. Put tiny bit of oil in pan.
  4. Heat pan.
  5. Place chicken in pan.
  6. Add salt.
  7. Add turmeric.
  8. Add and any other random spices (I had a choice of green, grey and off-white powders)
  9. Heat both sides for six minutes or so.
See, my mum knew exactly what I was (not) capable of, and so made sure I had as straightforward and idiot-proof instructions as possible. This is in contrast to last time when my friends totally overestimated how much common sense I had in the kitchen. Plus, I know that chicken is done when the insides are not pink anymore, which meant that I had a target to aim for. Fantastic - I was confident I'd cook a good meal. However, I was feeling the same way about the dhal too.

Tonight actually went pretty well. I think I might have used too much oil in the beginning, but that was easily solved with a little drainage action. Other than that the recipe went off without a hitch, the food was smelling wonderful, I felt like I was totally in control at all times and I definitely enjoyed it more than I did last time. It did take me around 90 minutes in the kitchen, sure, but I had a really late lunch anyway so I was on track for dinner when I finally ate.

As for the chicken, well, it certainly tasted nice. Most bits (there were three in total) may have been a bit too well done, but after last week I wasn't taking any more chances (by the way my brother took the rest of the dhal to his home, found it was raw and so boiled it for another half hour before it was finally ready to eat. Whoops), and as my mum (yes, her again) always says, it's better to overcook than under.

Of course, I'll have to wait till tomorrow before I tell you how well cooked it actually was. The last slab of meat was a bit thick and so might have needed a bit more time than the other pieces, but still I remain confident. Still, I'd appriciate it if you would refrain from betting whether I'll have the runs over the next few days or not. Cheers. Oh, and as always, piccies are on Picasa. (EDIT: And as it happened it passed the SIL test the next day. Whoop!)

As for my cooking in general, well, I think my decision from last week still stands. As much fun as today was, I still don't have to do it (not really), and I can think of many other better things to do instead. I have to admit though; there really is something different about eating a meal you've cooked yourself. And if the above proves anything at all, it's that the best person to teach you how to cook really is your mum, even if she happens to be a billion miles away at the time.