Saturday, December 3, 2011

Three recent cooking discoveries

1) The good:

Generally speaking, I don't like cilantro.  For most of my childhood, my impressions of cilantro were based solely on the large sprigs that were placed inside Vietnamese sandwiches, which we often picked up during shopping trips at the Vietnamese supermarkets in Sacramento.  I would very deliberately unwrap and open my sandwich, extract the cilantro, and hand it to my dad (who likes the herb).

Last weekend, though, Andrew and I wanted to cook dinner and remembered a garlic-lime fish recipe from Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything.  We didn't have the cookbook in the car, and an iPhone Google search only turned up a recipe for shrimp (or squid) with cilantro, lime and garlic.  It looked easy, and we got shrimp at Whole Foods, so game on.  Turns out, when combined with garlic, lime and a little fish sauce, cilantro and I get along perfectly well!

2) The bad:

I was making scrambled eggs the other morning and didn't want to open my newly-purchased milk just to add a little for tenderness, so instead I whisked in some low-fat Greek yogurt.  The result was objectively edible, but subjectively disgusting.

3) The ugly:

It turns out that if one is using the pre-cooked chicken breast strips from Trader Joe's, it is highly inadvisable to leave the entire package in the refrigerator for three days, freeze half for later use, defrost that half, and then leave the defrosted half in the refrigerator for a couple days before actually cooking with it.  I really shouldn't have been surprised that food poisoning was the result.  (Mom, if you're reading this, don't worry; it happened a month or two ago, and I was fine after a day or two).