Serious Eats: Talk

Not just a slump--a string of cooking failures!

Hi Eaters,

So, in the last week and a half, I (who rarely burns things) burned a simple chicken curry dish to a black char, triple salted a caldo verde into oblivion, made meatballs and absentmindedly added so many breadcrumbs that they tasted like wallpaper paste, added greek yogurt into a hot mushroom sauce, thereby curdling the yogurt and ruining the sauce, which would have been ruined anyhow since I majorly overcooked the noodles it would have been served on and...sin of all sins, forgot to salt chicken thighs before doing the simplest of Pepin's chicken recipes.

I've never had such a consistent streak of boneheaded cooking failures. Some of the problems seem to be from absent-mindedness, others...who knows?

I may have turned a corner yesterday...I managed a pot of chicken soup (albeit with rotisserie chicken) and a flourless chocolate cake with success (although I accidentally turned off the oven five minutes into baking time and didn't notice until the cake should have been finished, thereby doubling the 'cooking' time.

Have any of you experienced a string of cooking fails of this magnitude? Consistency in methods used to be my strongest cooking point. How do you pick yourself up and dust yourself off after a string of cooking disasters?

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