Independent Study



As much as I joke about my lack of kitchen skills, I rarely make a truly inedible meal. There was the time I forgot to put noodles in a lasagna, and my recipe for “barf tuna” is legendary, but most of the time my cooking doesn’t repulse. That said, a giant pot of putrefaction has recently taken up residence in the garbage can under my kitchen sink.

Every meal is an opportunity for learning (and, as it turns out, grease fires). Here’s what I learned today:

  1. If a recipe doesn’t specifically call for soy sauce, there’s probably no reason to include it.
  2. Silken tofu and firm tofu are not interchangeable.
  3. Corn starch isn’t as harmless as it looks. (On the plus side, I now know how to make glue.)
  4. Domesticated animals exiting the kitchen while you’re cooking is the international sign for “Please find a takeout menu.”
  5. Rice noodles ≠ spaghetti
  6. If you think it might be a mistake, it is probably a mistake.

And my final lesson of the evening: A cast iron pan is no match for a bad cook with unshakeable optimism.