A Life Askew

Bumbling Through One Day At A Time

Cooking D’uhs and D’ohs!

on March 20, 2012

While I was making breakfast this, uh, morning..  While I was making breakfast today, I had to keep reminding myself to walk away from the potatoes and let them cook.  I have a terrible habit of hovering over them, while stirring too often, and then wondering why they take so long to brown…

Which got me thinking about all the really stupid things I do when I’m cooking that I totally know better than to do.  So, I’m making a list of “D’uhs and D’ohs” that we either all do, or you’ll say, “D’uh!” as you read it. 🙂

I wanted to try to add snazzy pictures, but I’d have to steal them, and well, that’s stealing.  And I haven’t gotten into the habit of photo-journaling all my stupidity yet, but I’m getting there.

Anyhow, here goes:

The 10 Biggest D’uhs! and D’ohs! of My Kitchen

  1. If you want really brown pan fried potatoes, without nuclear high heat on your stove, walk away.  I have to force myself to stay away from my potatoes to let them brown.  Often I still don’t and I get over mushed, hot, still not brown, potatoes.
  2. DO NOT walk away from your grilled cheese.  I always get distracted and come back to a cheese filled briquette.  If I could some how switch my cooking methods for the grilled cheese and potatoes, I’d be fine.
  3.   Plug in the appliance you’re working with.  I cannot even begin to count how many times I have turned on my crock pot and walked away without it being plugged in.  Or hit the on button on the mixer to actually be surprised that nothing happened.  Or got mad that dinner wasn’t even warm after 30 minutes on the stove, that wasn’t on.  Or waited an hour for coffee.  Or even got mad that my computer wouldn’t turn on (without a power supply).  Anyhow, you get the idea.  If you want something to work, plug it in and then turn it on.
  4. Plan ahead, a little, at least enough to get out a big enough bowl the first time.  I would probably have 1/3 less dishes to wash if I would just use the right pots and pans and bowls and utensils the first go round.
  5. This is kind of more, 4a… Plan ahead again, but this time, for things that are time sensitive.  Like slicing the cheese for your grilled cheese sandwiches BEFORE you put the buttered bread in the pan.  This could also help with number 2.
  6. Make sure you open the right part of your spice containers.  For example, the McCormick spice tins have both “pour” and “shaker” openings.  Mixing up the two could be disastrous.  Or, rather, it IS disastrous.  And you never, ever, live it down.
  7. Don’t EVER EVER EVER EVER EVER leave potholders on the stove top!!  I used to be really good about that.  And then I had a kid and my brain fell out.  And I have a really bad habit of-
  8. Making sure I am turning on the correct burner.  I have burned more potholders, and rice, and other low temp things because I’m an idiot and turned the wrong burner on high.  I’m lucky I haven’t burned down my house yet.  I’m gonna claim innocence on a couple of them after my range was replaced.  Why can’t they just put those damn nobs in the same order on all of them!!
  9. Not all sticks are made equal… Make sure you know what increments the products you’re using come in.  Like, when switching from stick butter or margarine to stick shortening.  They are not the same measurements….  And will make your brownies greasy.  (Okay, this one wasn’t me, but it’s still funny true.)
  10. And last, but not least, make sure you have all your ingredients before you start anything.  I’ve gotten halfway through more cookies, cakes, dinners, breakfasts…  Well, you get the idea, I do it a lot.  You’d think I’d know better by now, but it’s usually eggs or milk.  Things that other people use and don’t mention we’re out of.  Things that I naturally assume we have on hand.  And then we don’t.  Things that I have to drop everything for so I can drive 30 minutes to the store to get.  (I should just buy chickens and a cow.) Things that are stupidly easy to look in the fridge and verify we have….

And that’s it for now.  I’m sure there are about 50 more things that I commonly screw up, but luckily for my sanity I can’t think of them.  Ten should be enough for now anyhow. 🙂

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13 responses to “Cooking D’uhs and D’ohs!

  1. atelian33 says:

    I’m just starting to explore the Art of the Kitchen and I’m learning a lot of these lessons as I’m going as well. The wrong burner and the correct size pots/pans really hit home for me. I’ve gone to make soup before, turned on the wrong burner and ended up with a steaming kettle of tea instead. Thanks for the great lessons.

    http://www.adamtelian.com

    • alifeaskew says:

      Hey! You’re certainly welcome! I hope they are really lessons and not frequent mishaps for you. 🙂 And thanks for reading! I’m super new at this and it’s really encouraging. 🙂

  2. While generally quite proficient in the kitchen, I set out to make ginger molasses cookies one day. I got half way through the process and only then realized that I didn’t actually have any molasses(a key ingredient). I managed to make due and ended up with some delightful ginger cookies, however, I was not happy about the fact that I had to change course half way through.

    • alifeaskew says:

      Those sound really good… Luckily, molasses I usually always keep on hand because I make my brown sugar as I go. 🙂 Thanks for sharing! It’s nice (and validating) to know I’m not the only forgetful one out there. 😀

      • That was the reason that I didn’t realize that we didn’t have any. It keeps forever, and it’s generally assumed, at least in our house, that there’s perpetually some in the cupboard.

        Also, I’ve turned the wrong burner on numerous times, as well. Thankfully I manage to catch my mistake before anything bad happens.

  3. This post is so me! I have done all of these things…in the last week! You should also add “don’t put plastic items on stovetop until it has totally cooled.” I have ruined two phones and many spoons that way 🙂

    Funny!

  4. alifeaskew says:

    I did forget that one!! I’ve lost more stupid tuperware that way…. 😀 Thanks! Not to sound like a broken record, but this whole blog thing is really encouraging with responses like this!!! Thanks thanks thanks!! 🙂

  5. Just found your blog, oh my goodness you are hysterical! And I’m sure it’s not because I am also guilty of every point you made.” Plug in the appliance you’re working with. ” Still laughing! Thanks!!

  6. Cristen says:

    I would like to inform you…mixing up the measurements of a stick of butter (1/2 cup) and a stick of shortening (1 cup)…wow, whoever did that was just DUMB… *hanging head in shame*

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