(Long weekend means going out of town to visit family. I’m attempting to queue something up but this may be my last post of the week. If it is, then I hope everyone gets a long weekend and gets to enjoy it!)
Pinterest is a strange place, at the same time practical and fantastic, full of great ideas and really stupid ones. It’s also, despite it’s very intention, where inspiration goes to die. I, like most people, pin away in great binges and then never try anything. Not being a crafty person, the forgotten ideas tend to be recipes. I love cooking and baking, but I also might be the laziest person ever. I’m trying hard to make more real meals, and less “it came from a box/the freezer aisle” meals. That means I’m finally using the ideas on my damn “recipes” board, and I’m here to tell you all about it. Here’s the verdict on two recent recipes:
The recipe I pinned for “sliced baked potatoes with herbs and cheese” from diywithmenow.com is not accessible because the link is blocked for being dangerous. “Oh well,” I said to myself “It can’t be that hard.” I did find another Pinterest reference recipe though, as I have no idea how long a potato should actually be baked for. I basically just referred to the comment under the pin for this particular recipe which said “bake at 425 for 40 minutes” As you can see, my potatoes didn’t unfurl quite the way they do in the picture. They were also rather hard in the middle so they probably should have baked longer. I also think I needed to but them through more but didn’t have any handy tricks to gauge my depth. We peeled the spuds and then I sliced them and rubbed them with olive oil, sprinkling them with regular table salt because I’m out of sea salt. We baked them for 30 minutes and then I pulled them out and added the cheese. We then baked them for another ten. They were served with a side of sour cream mixed with herbs de provence. Tasty, I just need to work on getting them well baked the whole way through. I bet they’d also be great with some chives and bacon. Oh, and the biggest tip I think I could possibly give you: bake them on tinfoil! We had some runaway cheeses in the sprinkling process, and there was just no way to get them to all stay on their spudly steeds. The tinfoil was great because it caught all the extra olive oil, salt, and baked on cheese and I could just wad it up and toss it and not waste time scrubbing my pretty baking sheet.
Next was the meatball sub casserole. Nothing I have ever made in my life has made me feel so Midwestern, and I once made a green bean casserole (I had to hand-sautee the onions because the entire fucking world sold out of those French’s Fried Onions that you’re supposed to sprinkle on the top, making that green bean casserole one of the most gourmet things I’ve ever crafted). This also might be the most unhealthy thing I have ever tried to make, and I’m an avid pie baker. The recipe is pretty simple, make your meatballs (it recommends making actual real bread crumbs and herbs meatballs, but we just rolled up some plain old hamburger). Pre-bake the meatballs while you prepare the rest of it. I used some fresh Italian bread to line the bottom of the pan. Then, here’s the part I had trouble with. I read this recipe in advance, I knew what was coming, I prepped all the ingredients and I was not prepared to be as absolutely revolted as I was by the act of mixing cream cheese and mayonnaise and then spreading it on a food I was supposed to consume. I’m not a mayo person to begin with, I make sure it never touches my sandwiches and only like it in a few select recipes. This recipe tasted great, Manbeast loved it, but I merely poked at my few meatballs and felt starved because having made it I could not bring myself to eat it. Perhaps ignorance is bliss, as Manbeast returned to the kitchen as I was pouring the sauce on, maybe not seeing the delicious Italian bread slathered with an unholy mixture of regular mayo and low fat cream cheese made this meal edible to him. The world may never know.
If I make it again, I would skip that step. Just bread, cheese, sauce and meatballs. No mayo, no cream cheese, maybe some garlic butter. I’d also like to try it “upside down” with the meat and sauce and some cheese on the bottom and then put the bread on top (with some cheese of course) so it gets toasted. Next time. Just no more mayo.
I can’t complain too much though. I got two recipes that, while not amazing stand alone successes, are worth tweaking to my own desires and trying again. No Pinstrosities here!