eggs, seafood

Day 141: I think I’ll go and make some toast

May 21, 2007

This evening we spent the best part of an hour attempting to craft Crab Tortilla (Egg Pie) and Shredded Plantain Hash Browns. This meal is a fry up, if ever there was one; I added gallons of olive oil in the course of the cooking. The egg pie (mmm sounds so appetising) begins with green pepper, onion, celery and pre-shredded hash brown potatoes being chopped in the food processor. I didn’t think it made a great deal of sense to bother to buy a bag of hash brown potatoes, only to put them in the food processor, but maybe I’m just being picky. Now we have lots of potential hash brown meals to make with the remainder of the bag. The vegetables were supposed to be finely chopped, which they were, but they were also so wet that they were the consistency of mushed up cucumber. No matter how much oil I used, the vegetables just soaked it up and stuck to the bottom of the (non-stick) pan. Chopping by hand would have been much more successful. A mixture of egg, cream and hot sauce was poured into the pan, and swirled around with the mushy vegetables. At this point it resembled a deep, pale green, lumpy omelette. The crab was mixed with Old Bay seasoning and poured on top of the egg, and sort of mixed in a bit.

Meanwhile, L shredded the green plantain and grated an onion into the bowl. Some flour and salt and pepper were added, and the mixture was formed into hash browns and fried. Back to the egg pie, I had a feeling that the mush was sticking to the bottom of the pan, so I called L in for backup. He flipped the egg mixture onto a plate without burning himself, which I thought was pretty impressive. Unfortunately the “golden” part of the omelette was stuck to the bottom of the pan. More oil and a switch of frying pans later, we attempted to cook the egg pie again. It would not stick to itself, only to the pan, despite our words of tender loving encouragement. Eventually we cut it down in size so that we could add copious amounts of oil and turn up the heat to brown the bottom. All roads led to disater; photogenic this meal is not.

Eventually we ended up with a lump of something that didn’t seem raw, and we served it with the hash browns and fruit salsa. It looked like we’d cut out part of a winter sweater and fried it, and served it with some fried carpet. It tasted almost as good. Both elements tasted raw, and each was as unappetising as the other. The omelette was like a hash brown fishy egg hybrid, only really badly made. I’ll concede that we may have messed this up somehow, but this is a lot of hassle for some fried things. Why not fry the hash brown potato mix and serve it with an omelette? Just a suggestion.

At least this was funny. It was so vile it was amusing. And now the condo smells of fried eggy fish. Which is marginally less offensive than Baby A’s post-operative breath. Tomorrow we will be making Bacon-Makes-It-Better Corn Chowder with Tomato and Ricotta Salata Salad. Sounds like an improvement on todays effort.

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  • Reply The Home Cook May 22, 2007 at 11:38 am

    Your experience is another reminder of why I wonder sometimes if anyone attempted her recipes in a regular kitchen before the book was printed. Just from reading the ingredients that went into the processor I can see why it was so wet – onions, celery, peppers and potatoes all contain copious amounts of water. If you process them all together you’d need to drain them off before attempting to fry them or the result would be what you experienced.

    In this project do you ever deviate from her instructions when you know they don’t make sense or is the point to follow them to the letter?

  • Reply Helen | One Year Project May 25, 2007 at 8:49 pm

    We sometimes catch things that are ridiculous- such as frying bacon in olive oil- and compensate, but generally we follow along. Also because we do a new recipe every night, I have to say that quite often the brain is not too engaged, so we just do whatever we are told.

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