Friday, February 26, 2010

A Culinary Masterpiece Gone To Waste

My sis-in-law came over today so we could knock two movies off of our Gilmore Girls movie list. We enjoyed Sixteen Candles during the kids nap time and An Officer and a Gentleman after the kids went to bed.

Ashlie was kind enough to bring lunch out for all of us. And it was good. Love me my Thai food. And the kids enjoyed their BDonald's.

For dinner I decided to make a double batch of chili with homemade stewed beans. This was my first time making beans and I may or may not have called my mom about ten times for instructions. I'll never tell.

I was super excited about this recipe and was hoping to post it here today. But, alas, I left Auntie Ashlie in charge for a few minutes and...well, let me back up.

About two days ago Nathan and I were talking in the living room and I was suddenly overwhelmed by the smell of garlic powder. Realizing my "energetic" two year old was missing from the room I jumped up to run to the kitchen with a picture of mountains of garlic powder covering my kitchen floor.

I was wrong. About the garlic mountains. I was correct in assuming who was guilty. Abiah just doesn't do that kind of stuff and Amelia is too short to reach that cupboard. And I am constantly chasing Hazel away from that cupboard.

Anyways. I was relieved to see there was only a small amount of garlic powder sprinkled/dumped on the floor. As I went to clean the mess up I realized that the mess would have been much bigger if I actually had more than 2-3 tsp on hand.

Mental note: pick up garlic powder. Mental note: stored. Mental note: lost in storage.

So as I'm preparing to make chili tonight I go to the afore mentioned cupboard to pull out the salt, cumin, chili powder, and garlic powder and... ZING! Mental note found! A few hours too late.

I turned the meat that was browning down to low and left the beans boiling on high. I told my SIL Ashlie that I need to run to my mom's. (She lives about five minutes away. And no, Nathan doesn't hate that.) I tell her that status of dinner and let her know it shouldn't be a bother but she might need to look after the beans once or twice. I didn't call my mom for the eleventh time to let her know I was coming over. I knew she'd be there and be glad to see me (I'm her favorite! Shhh! Don't tell my sisters.)

I was gone for about twenty minutes. and when I walked in the door...smoke? I smell smoke. No. I smell something burning! I hurried to the kitchen. And sure enough my beans. My precious, first time cooking them beans!

Ashlie trying to look innocent. Don't let her fool you!

My extensive training as my mother's daughter had prepared me for this very moment. I knew NOT to scrape the bottom of the pan. I also knew to calm down and not yell at my SIL. Everything would be okay. I transferred the unburned beans to a new pot and found that only a small layer on the bottom of the pan had been burned. Whew!

Small layer of burned beans after being scraped out of the pan.

Then more of my training came into play. Season the heck out of the chili to cover any "smokey" flavor that there may be. When I had accomplished this I brought Ashlie a small dish of the chili to try. When I handed it to her she asked, "What's this?"

"Your mistake that I fixed," I said. And then I told her that I was going to use this against her for the rest of her life (bitter much?) and we had a lovely rest of the evening together.

Finished product. Mmmmmmm!

I do hope to publish this recipe soon as it is a favorite. But since using homemade beans I realized I'm going to have to rework the amount of each spice used.


LaFonda Dunlap said...

Good looking rescue!!!! Hope they tasted as good as they looked! Ashley does a pretty good job trying to look innocent, but you have pictures to prove it!

Rachel said...

LOL! Your SIL-Bitterness is quite amusing! I've done that before too - but don't usually remember until it's too late not to scrape the bottom of the pan.