Thursday, April 2, 2009

Doing easy things the hard way

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For the life of me I cannot seem to hard-boil an egg, no matter how, ahem, 'hard' I try. I have used timers, checked for how quickly the shell dries on exposure to air, I've even left the egg in boiling water over the set time and still, there is a runny centre in the middle.

I know sometimes people find usually 'easy' things the most difficult to do and I tried to think of other examples. I came up with making toast without burning it (and trying to get it all golden, crumbly and crunchy on the outside, moist and soft on the inside!), cooking fluffy rice that also separates (this still has me stumped!), and of course the old addage of not knowing how to fry an egg or boil water. Even some restaurants cannot cook pasta to be al dente , and this is probably the only difficult/easy thing I can get right!

And, as far as keeping indoor plants alive, a huge 'you have got to be kidding' races out of my mouth before you or I blink. I even managed to destroy artificial lush green leaves. How you ask? They went mouldy after a particularly humid end of summer and had to be disposed of. Sad, really.

What are the 'expected' easy things that you find near impossible to perfect (and they can be outside the kitchen, of course)?


Natalie said...

Oh dear Mervat! I just can't get white tissues out of my colours wash. DER! I check pants, but still miss them.

Anna said...

Merv you are the CHEF! And i know one day you will either write a cook book,or own your restaurant, and im sure you will find a way of mastering the rice and egg cooking mystery.And for the life of me I cant master making the bbq - garlic dip, even though mum has shown me several times, and for me i get the easy way out sometimes and use uncle ben's rice. Egg i cant stand the smell of boiled egg so i never ever boil them md does that. I LOVE YOUR COOKING AND ALWAYS LOOK FORWARD TO SOMETHING NEW YOU HAVE INVENTED!

Lisa said...

i was just reading another post about boiled eggs.whats goign on ? is it an easter thing?

I usually BOIL them up for a minute or two, then turn the heat off, leave them on the stove, on the heated element in the hot water until they are needed a couple of hours later for sandwiches etc, when as luck would have it , theya re just right and minimum power used..........

btw- still rving about the beautiful rocks- so totally special- i gave you an official THANK YOU on my blog this morning.
smooches dear sister xxx

see you there! said...

I'm ok as long as I don't get distracted. I nearly set the house on fire recently while running some garlic bread under the broiler and talking to my GD at the same time.

Multi-tasking is definately not for me.


MyHijab said...

10 mins will get the eggs hard boiled! I do it nearly every saturday (we love boiled eggs!)

To get the rice perfect, the size of the pot needs to not be larger than the cook top. once the pot is larger than the cook top, the rice does not cook evenly and u end up with crunchy bit. Tried and tested (and u all seem to like my rice.... right?).

as with the toast, i like it burnt so i can't help you there!!

lakeviewer said...

The whole blogging, transferring pictures, linking...all these things that others do so easily become major chores for me. Forget about setting up a recorder for a certain time.

Suko said...

Your post reminds me that I often burn two things: sesame seeds (when I try and "toast" them) and frozen pizza. No matter how much I try to stay attentive, these goods are too often burnt beyond use!

Now I will read the comments, and see what others have admitted!

Sarah Lulu said...

I can do the eggs but for years making jelly defied me.

Loida of the 2L3B's said...

I was surprised when I read this post. I thought I was the only one like that.. I mean, I can cook and all but cooking hard boiled eggs exactly the way i want it? I'm 45 y.o. now and up to now i'm still ill-equipped to do it right. :(

Kayleigh said...

This is so funny :) I can't hand wash stuff for beans, like sweaters...they look awful no matter what I try. If it has to be hand washed I give it to my mom to do for me -- and I'm 45, lol!

I finally mastered brown rice by doing it in the microwave. All you need is a covered glass casserole dish (like 2qt or so)...1 cup rice to 2 cups water. Nuke it on high for 5min, then without touching it or opening the door nuke it for 40min on 50% power. It doesnt' save ANY time, but it always comes out perfect and you can serve & store it in the same dish.

Mervat said...

Natalie: I actually do the same thing. My solution is to zap the 'fluffy' clothes in the clothes dryer or just wash again!

Anna: I don't know about being a chef, maybe just an enthusiatic cook! I actually haven't used Uncle Ben's Rice in years. I may just try it know, just for fun ;)! I am making a choc cake tody to take to M & R's house...can't wait!

Lisa: I don't know if its easter or rather it's getting cooler in the morning and I guess it's nice to have a warm breakfast these days. I will take on your advice (maybe for breakfast today!). As for the rocks, you are so welcome. I am so glad you like them. The one from Lebanon in particular has been with me since December 1994 when I experienced my first white winter. It was magical and I have two others from the same place; holding & smelling them takes me back to that time. Very special. Smooches back to you sister.

Darla: I'll bet the conversation was worth it though!

MyHijab: Thanks for your advice too. You know I am going to try that now. So, that is your trick with the rice?? As for toast, I will remember you the next time I burn mine and then throw it away- for me there is nothing worse!

lakeviewer: Oh, you seem to be doing pretty well. I have seen the images on your blog and they are stunning to say the least. As for recording devices this has always had me stumped and there is no use in me bothering any more!

Suko: Hey you bring up a good one...sesame seeds. I always toast a second batch after burning the first!

Sarah Lulu: Jelly was one I could never get right...the kids usually ate the crystals before giving me a chance to make the jelly!

Loida: Believe me you are not the only one! Some great advice here...

Kayleigh: It is so sweet of your mum. I am following your brown rice recipe. Thank you so much for this. I can never get the brown rice to be tender enough and can;'wait to try this out.

Thank you for your honesty everyone. Some great advice I will definitely come back to again and again. xxoo

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