So I cooked yesterday, in my (finally) clean kitchen, for pretty much the first time.
Anyone who talks to me knows I like to cook, but I prefer baking. Baking was kind of tailor-made for me. I love sweets, I love crafting little sugar-coated delicacies. I like making desserts pretty as well as tasty. Cooking is a lot about how a thing tastes. You add pinches here and dashes there, using the recipe itself as a guideline. There’s room for more (or less) and a lot of it is edible mistakes. Baking is much more precise. You need a specific amount of flour and butter and sugar because otherwise the confection will not taste right. Many mistakes are not edible (or only barely edible) because of this. It appeals to my OCD nature.
But I did it yesterday. I took the plunge and finally cooked more than just mac n’ cheese in my stove. I honestly haven’t done like any cooking in this apartment. Part of it is living with two boys and my house never being clean.
I fixed that part on Friday. April 1st was my spring cleaning day. I know, it sounds like a bad joke but I needed the weather to warm up a little and it was as good a time as I could think of. I took care of the two areas I actually participate in: the bathroom and the kitchen (I refuse to take care of the living room, since I never use it.)
I took advantage of my now beautifully clean kitchen and decided to try a recipe I found on an odd blog. I happen to be a fan of the Showtime TV series The United States of Tara. Briefly, the main premise is that the title character is a woman living with DID (Dissociative Identity Disorder, also known as split personalities.) One of her Alters (that is, her alternate personalities) is a 50’s housewife, by the name of Alice. Showtime has given all the characters their own blogs, so I checked some of them out. It’s on her blog (http://aliceindomesticland.tumblr.com/) that I found this recipe.
Butter-Crusted Scalloped Tomatoes
2 ½ cups of tomatoes
2 tbls chopped onions
2 tbls sugar
1 cup bread crumbs (soft)
2 tbls butter (melted) plus more for pan
2 tbls grated Parmesan cheese
Butter an 8×8” baking dish. In a bowl, combine tomatoes, onions, sugar, salt and pepper. Pour into the baking dish. In the bowl, toss the bread crumbs with the melted butter, then top the baking dish with these. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake for 25 minutes in a preheated 400 degree oven.
For the record, I don’t have an 8×8″ pan. I do, however, have some glass pie dishes. The 23cm one worked perfectly. And boy, Alice was right. These things make you sleepy. Especially when drinking a glass of sweet red wine with it.