I’m beginning to distrust the word easy. Yesterday, it was yoga. Today, it was ‘1001 Fast Easy Recipes’ that pulled me a fast one.
The book sat on my shelf nearly the entire past two years. I like cooking, and love grocery shopping but I rarely use recipes because I tend to prefer to stick to what I know. Meat, fish, pasta, rice, egss…I know the basics. When I’m starving, I don’t want to scratch my planned meal for some cereal.
But today, I stepped outside my culinary comfort zone. Which was, if I’ll be honest, thanks to a coupon. Walgreens offered a ‘Buy 1, Get 1 free’ canned salmon. $2.19 for two 15 oz cans? I couldn’t resist. Even though, well, I didn’t actually know how to prepare canned salmon. Hey, it’s like canned tuna, right? Ah, not so much.
On the walk back from Walgreens, I pondered what to do with the confusing can. Finally, it came to me. Salmon patties! I’ve eaten them a million times…they have to be simple to prepare, right? Sure, says ‘1001 Fast Easy Recipes.’ All you need is 1 (15 ounce) can pink salmon with juice, 1 egg, 1/2 cup cracker crumbs and 1 teaspoon baking powder. I didn’t have the cracker crumbs, so I substituted Wheat Thins, which I figured would work just as well. The recipe made me have a few important relevations:
1.) Can openers are confusing, and I cannot comprehend how to use one. Because of this sad fact, I had to use a huge kitchen knife to stab the can of salmon continuously (likely creating a few neighborly enemies) until it finally came open. A juicy mess.
2.) Recipes are there for a reason. People test them. If it says to drop the mixture by teaspoons, do it. Cup size will not work.
3.) It’s probably not the best idea to eat something as it’s being cooked. Especially when it contains eggs.
4.) You actually do have to wait for the hot oil to spread in your cooking pan. Otherwise, your prized patties will burn.
5.) Patience is a culinary virtue I do not have. You’re supposed to wait until a side browns to flip. It may be okay to do it a bit early when you cook chicken, but if something isn’t actually in solid form, trying to flip it after 30 seconds will it an inedible mess.
6.) If you’re going to make fish, be prepared to deal with the consequences. You will not be able to say sayonara to the smell for at least a few days.
Of my 12 or so salmon patties, only 4 were actually edible. Fortunately, those edible ones were actually pretty good. But I’ll give myself a D+ overall. I burnt too many to get a good grade and plus, the fact that I can’t open a can is just plain embarrassing.