Good intentions in the kitchen do not equal edible! It is confession time!
Yikes! I have been asked to share a moment that I have not been successful in in the kitchen. Specifically where I failed at my attempts to serve healthy (awesome tasting) nutritious food. It is funny how my memory focuses on my successes and buries those less then desirable moments.
However, all it takes is asking my teens what mistakes or failures they remember in the past years. (I have to say, that my daughters are really so gracious when it comes to my creations.)
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My recipe might be a failure when the results are barely inedible! Here are a few failures from my experience. It would be fun if you could see the expressions or the laughter that comes with the re-telling of these kitchen failures.
- The Brown Smoothie. Finally, I had saved up enough to purchase my very own Vitamix professional blender. Fun, exciting! I could not wait to try every recipe in the book. This blender could crush ice, fruit, and really anything in seconds. I began serving simple smoothies that were quite delicious. One day, my daughters were not feeling well, and I thought I would make a powerful healing smoothie! I began tossing power foods like spinach, garlic, and blueberries into the Vitamix. Unfortunately, it produced a smoothie that was greenish, brownish with an unusual smell. Still optimistic, I poured it into small jelly jars, and served it my daughters. They hesitantly took their first sip. Wow! The combination was so bad, they could not get it down! (Purchase a Vitamix blender here!)
- Zucchini pancakes. We all love pancakes and I was so excited to try a new recipe. (Notice, that excitement does not equal edible either!) The recipe I found only had 3 ingredients! Grated zucchini, chopped onions and eggs. I followed the recipe carefully making sure to pat my zucchini dry before adding the other ingredients. I poured them in my cast iron skillet and fried them up. Despite my enthusiasm for a new healthy pancake they did not go over very well. They tasted nothing like pancakes and more like a fried green mess. (I use Lodge cast iron cookware).
- The “Perfect” Chocolate Chip Blob. I wanted to create the perfect tasting grain-free chocolate chip cookie. Most of the recipes I find use almond flour, which will not work in our family. We have a tree nut allergy in our house, so we bake with grain-free, tree-nut flours. I also wanted to use low glycemic sugars like maple syrup, xyla, or coconut sugar. I created my recipe, and even wrote down what I used! (Now that is optimism!) The batter was beautiful, making each potential cookie look promising as I placed them in the oven. My disappointment began when I removed the baking sheet. They did not look like what I had envisioned. It gets worse, they did not taste like I had hoped either (the cassava flour flavor was overpowering). I was ready to toss them out! My daughters came running due to the chocolate chip smell and eagerly tried one of my cookies. They thought these blobs tasted super! It took some of the sting out of my failure, but it was not what I expected or hoped. Since I can envision and almost taste what I am trying to achieve, I will TRY again!
5 Lessons to be learned from Failing in the Kitchen!
- Mistakes happen; learn from them. When you spend time in the kitchen, mistakes happen, either from experimentation, a poorly written recipe or human error. Regardless of the reason for the mistake, their is always a lesson to be learned!
- Not everyone will like everything! It is okay to have individual tastes and preferences. I personally have my opinions about certain flavors and textures. When a family member does not prefer a food that is served, it does not mean failure.
- Show Kindness. I know how it feels to fail in the kitchen, and it makes it that much easier to extend kindness. Ultimately, showing kindness to yourself when those fails happen is most important.
- Practice Vigilance. I am thinking of the time I wanted to perfect baked gluten-free doughnuts. Pumpkin. Blueberry. Chocolate. Cake. Coconut. I kept trying different combinations to get just the right moisture, consistency, and taste.
- Keep Baking!!! Giving up is not an option. So please, let the experimenting continue! The more you try new recipes, the more success you will experience. Plan on having a failure!
My response to failure has been noticed. It is fun to have my teenagers in the kitchen. Yes, they love to experiment and try new recipes. They even have some failure stories of their own. They desire perfection just like their mother. I had no idea how significant my response to failure would be to their future in the kitchen.
Failure is not negative, it just has it’s own way of teaching us. Therefore, when we learn from those failures (however painful) it can turn our disappointment into confidence.
Do you have any kitchen failures (that may even seem humorous now) to share?