Wednesday, December 15, 2010

School's out! It's cooking time!

I cook a lot.  I pretty much try to cook something for dinner every night.  Some people, it turns out, think I'm crazy.  But my parents did that for us growing up, so I thought it was the norm.  What, you don't cook every night?  But, the last three weeks saw a major decline in my cooking due to the major increase in school work.  We ate a lot of frozen stuff and mac 'n cheese.  But now, since school is officially done (for now, not including stuff I have to keep up on for ongoing projects), I can cook again.  Yay.

I had been saving my last sugar pumpkin because I always wanted to make pumpkin soup and serve it in an actual pumpkin.  I took on that challenge last night.  I looked up how to do it online and followed the directions.  Well, not for the soup but for the pumpkin prep.  I cut off the top and cleaned it out like a jack-o-lantern.  I sprayed the pumpkin with cooking spray and put it in a 325 degree oven for about 45 minutes.  During the hour, I sauteed my onions and celery, blah blah blah... whatever, I made the soup.

After 45 minutes or so, I checked the pumpkin and it looked perfect.  Still nice and firm but also starting to soften up.  I took some of the meat from the inside and added it to the soup, making sure to leave it nice and thick to help keep the pumpkin's structural integrity.  I ladled the soup in the pumpkin and it looked great.

So why don't I have a beautiful picture of a glistening golden pumpkin filled to the brim with delicious creamy pumpkin soup?  Because the pumpkin failed.  Apparently, pumpkins cook a lot faster on the bottom than the sides, and the bottom of my pumpkin just gave way, letting all of the soup pour all over the stove.  Lickily, 80% of it ended up on the cooking sheet so I was able to save most of the soup.  FML.  I cleaned out the pumpkin and threw it back in the oven to cook the rest of the way so I could puree it like the rest of its friends and use it for more delicious things.

So that's it.  I'm never going to try it again.  The need is out of my system.  My sister made me feel better though.  She pointed out that in Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, Barbara Kingsolver did the same thing.  That must mean I'm just like her.  I'm cool with that.

Since I am vehemently opposed to posts without picures, here's a picture that has nothing to do with what I just talked about:

Nikolai, cock down.

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