So, I heard the good news today that my book has shipped from the printers to the distribution warehouse, so it should be only about 2 more weeks. Yay! I’m very excited about this.

Sometimes meals, no matter how promising, fall short of your expectations. The following post is a lesson in unexpected food fails.

Exhibit A:


Look at these beautiful baby artichokes. I didn’t even know such a thing existed. I fell in love with the brilliant colors, and when the vendor told me how easy they were to make, I was sold. No steaming and choke-scraping, just peel back a couple of layers, trim the tops, saute and viola!


So pretty!


Here they are, sauteed with some garlic, olive oil and kalamata olives (to give them that familiar briney taste from jarred artichokes). In the background, some black bean patties from Macheesmo (they actually held together- horrah!), topped with mushrooms and some yellow cherry tomatoes and blueberries on the side. Each step in preparing the artichokes was a lesson in the art of nature. I eagerly bit into my first one and…

Blech. Chewy, tough on the edges and flavorless. Oh well, can’t win them all.

Exhibit B:


Here, I tried to replicate my favorite treat from Blossoming Lotus– maple smoked tempeh… yeah, not so much. But it was edible. I don’t know what it is, I love tempeh at restaurants, but it always falls short at home. The requisite brussel sprouts and a quinoa pilaf, with chopped bell pepper, onion and chopped green beans filled out the meal. I added a can of chickpeas to the leftover pilaf and it made for some great lunch leftovers.

But, meals that flop can all be remedied with a good ol’ slice of cake.

Exhibit C:


I’m much better with a bag of icing to pipe, then writing with melted chocolate. Alas, my sad attempt at Ringo’s drum kit.

Yeah, once I realized how bad it was going I gave up. I was working from memory and would have been aided by looking at the cake. I also had a little melted chocolate explosion that kept me from filling in the letters. Oh well, the Yellow Submarine Cake was a good enough ode to The Beatles.


Besides, we all know it’s what it tastes like that really matters. My standby cake is the chocolate cake from my German Chocolate Cake recipe in the cookbook. I added some chocolate chips for extra chocolatey goodness. Between the two layers, I spread a thin layer of straight up peanut butter and then a portion of vanilla buttercream icing that I’d added some peanut butter to. I frosted it with the remaining vanilla buttercream and ruined it, I mean, wrote on it with melted chocolate. So nommy… I’m such a sucker for chocolate and peanut butter. This cake was for my brother’s 15th birthday. He is visiting us and he’s also a huge Beatles fan and a lover of chocolate and peanut butter. He’s also appearing in the new Cohen brother’s movie coming out this fall! How cool is that, his first movie and it’s a Cohen brother’s flick! Granted, he has no lines, but he filmed for several days and a scene that he was an extra in is in the trailer. Pretty sweet…

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11 Responses to sad füd

  1. Sandy says:

    Cake is my middle name. Like, yum!

  2. Andrea says:

    Yummy looking cake and cool brother story. My son was an extra in a Keanu Reeves/Morgan Freeman movie but we could only see him if we watched his scene in slow motion! (You could see him really well in slow motion but not at all at normal speed.)

  3. Josiane says:

    Your meals were beautiful! Too bad they weren’t as yummy as they look…

  4. Courtney says:

    Awww…I am sorry the artichokes didn’t turn out. They look *beautiful*–what a let down! I LOVE artichokes (I seriously used to ask for them every year without fail for my birthday dinner growing up…forget pizza or mac and cheese–this weird-o wanted artichokes!).

    I hope your brother had a happy birthday! Wow–he just turned 15?! There must be a bit of an age span between you two!


  5. Nora says:

    aw, i know how you feel! i spent like 2 hrs last night making the stewed miso tofu and potatoes from vwav last night, and i just didn’t like it at all. :(

  6. Vegetation says:

    I have so many of those disasters it’s just not funny anymore (you should have seen the risotto I attempted to make the other night! EEK!!). The artichokes looked pretty though!

    And cake makes ANYTHING better. Especially chocolate cake….with peanut butter is even better!

  7. Kiersten says:

    Sorry about your recent kitchen failures. Everything still looked pretty! I’ve had a few kitchen failures too lately, it’s always so disappointing when that happens. Better luck next time.

  8. wherestherevolution says:

    I can’t wait for your new book! Your first one is a standard in my kitchen!

    When I make tempeh, I steam it first, or microwave it for a little while in a covered dish with some water. Also, I love marinating it and just baking it in the marinade- until all the marinade is absorbed. I get great results with these. I <3 tempeh.

  9. wherestherevolution says:

    oh, this is bazu, by the way!