Day 237: Would you like some batter with your battered batter?

August 25, 2007

This afternoon we had L’s new colleague T over for lunch, and we asked if he wanted to stay for dinner. We were clear to say that the menu was beyond our control, and that he’d probably get better food if he came back tomorrow. Nevertheless, he stayed for Crispy Fried Sesame Shrimp, Zucchini, and Mushroom Caps with a Ginger-Soy Dipping Sauce, and in fact was the frying master, while L and I basically sat around for a bit. We’re so polite- come for dinner, the food sounds bad, you can cook it, then we can blame you if it tastes bad. Not really, well maybe.

Anyway, T dredged slices of zucchini, mushroom caps and shrimp in boxed pancake mix, then coated them in pancake mix batter with added sesame seeds. He then deep fried a mountain of food. You were supposed to be able to shake off the excess batter, but it clung to the items for dear life. The batter ended up being pretty thick, in fact everything was ginormous, like super-sized deep fried unidentified objects. The fried stuff was served with a dipping sauce of tamari, water, lime juice, grated ginger, crushed garlic, sugar (in our case honey) and hot sauce. L and I made the sauce so we weren’t entirely opting out this evening.

We each had a few pieces, and it wasn’t terribly bad, it was just so very battery. And the fact that the pancake mix is a little sweet to begin with did not help matters. This wasn’t exactly tempura with a light crispy batter, more like junk food of the worst kind. Actually the things inside were quite nicely cooked, but you had to get through/ peel off a lot of coating to get there. Really, the interior items could have been microwaved. The dipping sauce at least was a little zingy- we omitted the extra oil which was supposed to be included- but really it just ended up being a salty aside to the fatty meal. Not the greatest dinner in the history of dinners by any means. A clue to that is always how swiftly people stop eating, and how much food ends up being thrown away. This is also one of those meals were a few hours later you are incredulous that you actually ate any part of such a thing, leaving you filled with a little self-loathing.

However, moving on, tomorrow we will be making Sautéed Salmon with Spicy Fresh Mango-Pineapple Chutney, which is made with fresh mango yet tinned pineapple.

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  • Reply Jojo August 26, 2007 at 8:52 am

    Yeah, that looks like not a very healthy meal. Nice try though.

    Did I mention… I’m listening to Julia Child’s autobiography on CD right now, and it makes me want to try some of that classic French cooking. Some of it sounds awful (what is aspic? and I won’t do brains!), but a lot of it sounds like just basic cooking, going back to the fundamentals. Anyhoo, just thought I’d throw that in there 🙂

  • Reply Helen | One Year Project August 26, 2007 at 8:27 pm

    At least you’d learn something classic- pretty sure Julia Child didn’t make hot dog salad or serve every fifth meal with “exotic chips” from a bag!

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